In Lefter 10 ‘A Good War’, I said that “National’s efforts will expand an increasingly desperate unemployed sector which will work for less and less money and under more onerous conditions.”
I also said “… instead of NZ trying to trade its way out of this recession, Prime Minister John Key will just follow his experience. Which means he’ll borrow to raise money while pursuing a right-wing agenda of making the lower classes poorer while rewarding his wealthy Pakeha cronies with more access to that wealth.”
I hate it that I’m right in this case, but National’s first budget confirms exactly what I imagined back then. It’s just so commonly a right-wing response.
For the record, I don’t care about scrapping future tax breaks – they were only going to benefit the wealthy anyway.
I’ve also said before that it’s a shame this recession will give National license to push out the right-wing agenda much more quickly. I believed that National was going to tread softly for the first term to win a second, and then it was all right-wing guns ablaze. However, the recession has made all that subterfuge unnecessary as any measure, pronounced with faces grave, can now be blamed on the recession.
The Herald reported that business has welcomed Budget measures. Surprise! So have the medical and science fraternities. So has the private school sector, that privileged breeding ground of National and Act supporters. (You know it’s true. Well, so does National). While most New Zealanders face cuts and unemployment, private schools get 30 million dollars more!
However, union groups and public educators are among those not so impressed. This is also predictable. National would actually prefer that unions and their members simply evaporated. They virtually made it happen, too, a few years ago. ‘Workers have rights? Preposterous! That would be an impediment to profit.’
Bill English also dealt to the Super fund. Does that surprise anybody, with National’s record? Muldoon did the very same thing, disenfranchising a generation of their old ages in the process.
The tried and true path to negotiating a recession (although it may be a Depression soon) is to invest in skills, thereby stimulating the jobs market, or at least preparing for a turnaround. Infrastructure is ripe for investment too, and pays dividends in the future for the whole country. Instead, National is intent on merely propping up its class. While doing nothing for long-term or even immediate growth.
Unemployment is forecast to rise. Of course it is – then business owners can demand lower wages and impose worse conditions. This is nirvana for the greedy, and see how they love it. It’s evil, frankly.
Remember the ‘jobs summit’? Why did Bill English tell a meeting of business representatives a few days before the summit that good times were coming, because soon business ‘leaders’ would be able to ‘do anything’?
It’s treason, if you ask me. Against most New Zealanders. And does anyone still trust John Key’s ‘management’ after Melissa Lee and Richard Worth? He’s been so keen to get on TV at the drop of a hat – suddenly he’s absent or running for cover.