August 24, 2014
First thoughts about National’s Housing Policy
- It is probably clever. $20,000/couple is not an election bribe any other party will be able to match and it is targeted at a very specific group of people: first-home buyers on low and medium incomes. Presumably National has decided that these are an important demographic in this election.
- It is easy to ridicule. Pouring taxpayer money into the housing bubble is not a great way to solve the housing affordability crisis. If the subsidy increases prices by $20,000 then the government is simply wasting money. I guess the Nats will argue that it will increase the demand for new houses, or that they’ll gut the RMA to increase the supply.
- It is not a ‘gamechanger’. It’s probably what the Nats were planning to do before Dirty Politics, and they’ve decided to go ahead with it and pretend everything is business as normal. Good luck with that guys!
- National’s ideology and values are not (yet) delivering any policy ideas during this campaign. Free money for first home buyers, free doctor’s visits for children and MOAR ROADS are not right-wing (or ‘center right’) ideas, in the way that the partial sales of the energy companies was. Having a popular right-wing party simply unable to campaign on its values or ideas is a pretty sweet place for the left to be, long term. It would be nice to be in government, but having National in there implementing left-wing policies for us is the next best thing.
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