Sunday, February 03, 2008

Fran O'Sullivan on Labours deception

Fran O`Sullivan has a good column today. Read it here. She indicates how Labours deception in its unsuccessful attempt to win an election led to the Mother of all budgets and benefit cuts in 1991. Clark last week dragged up Richardson's 1991 Mother of All Budgets, claiming the social dysfunction caused by its slashing of the welfare state was responsible for the current generation of violent youth offenders.

If she truly believes Richardson's benefit-slashing budget spawned a tribe of young Damiens then she should set about trying to rectify the conditions.We want our Prime Minister to seek answers and try and unite us in facing up to some unpleasant realities.Not play "dog whistle" politics by trying to seed in the public's mind the belief that electing National to government again would simply exacerbate youth murder sprees if the Key Government embarks upon a hidden agenda.

Clark's not on solid ground when it comes to hidden agendas. As deputy Prime Minister and Labour's key strategist at the 1990 election she helped perpetrate the big lie of that campaign. In 1990, New Zealand was teetering towards economic recession. But the Labour Cabinet kept claiming right up to election day that the Government's accounts were in surplus.

National Prime Minister Jim Bolger's plans for a decent society were scuppered when he was confronted by officials just one day after the election with news of a serious fiscal crisis that they had kept secret under Labour's orders. The Bank of New Zealand was about to go belly-up, something senior Labour ministers had known about for weeks, and the Treasury was forecasting a $3.7 billion deficit for the 1991/92 year which would blow out to a $5.2 billion deficit by 1993/94 unless drastic actions were taken.

Bolger's Cabinet had to cut costs to avert a major credit rating downgrade for New Zealand.
Helen Clark should just call the election now and get her misery over with sooner rather than later.




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