Tuesday, 11 August 2020

Free Press, 11 August 2020


We’re Off

ACT’s Change Your Future bus tour is off and rolling with the first stop in Whangarei last night and Waipu, Mangawhai and Warkworth today. The list of scheduled events is growing and can be found here. The election cannot just be Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. ACT’s candidates are going on tour from Whangarei to Invercargill to take the election on tour. There is no taxpayer funding for this tour, we must fundraise every kilometre. If you’d like to pay for a kilometre, or more, please donate here.

Disaster Prime Minister

David Seymour rounded off three years in Parliament with a widely praised and watched speech. His point: “we have a disaster Government led by a disaster Prime Minister, because, if it wasn't for the disasters, what we would have is a long series of let downs, where everything the parties over there promised in 2017 has been a failure.”

Case In Point

There are some situations you cannot hug your way out of. The COVID recovery is one of them. The Government is not announcing when we might be able to go to the Cook Islands. The Prime Minister has said it is too difficult to separate passengers from different planes at the airport. We should have been able to go there months ago. Sadly this case is a barometer of the Government’s ability to solve problems after the disaster has peaked.

Another Case In Point

During lockdown there was a shortage of PPE and the Government said wearing masks was not necessary. Now we are all told it would be helpful to have some masks. We might even have a day where everyone wears one as a ‘practice.’ Where is this coming from? Free Press has enough experience in government to know cock ups are much more common than conspiracies. Why? Because conspiracies are a lot of work and governments are incompetent.

Is Community Transmission Being Covered Up?

We are often asked if there is community transmission but the Government is covering it up. We don’t believe anything of the sort is happening. Covering up positive tests would require a cast of dozens at minimum, it wouldn’t happen. The reason for the fear mongering is a combination of the Government liking the state of fear and knowing its public health capability has barely improved since February.

What We Need

Even those doing well are concerned that the buoyant economy is a false economy. The number one thing the Government can do to guarantee everyone’s economic security is get smarter about public health. Unfortunately the Government’s approach is far from smart, and it’s not just the Cooks and mask advice where they’re falling short.

Cost-Benefit Analysis

The Productivity Commission has published a report showing that the five day extension to Level 4 lockdown cost far more than any conceivable benefit. Free Press says the Government must start assessing whether its interventions make people better off. Ditto for weighing the COVID and non-COVID health impacts.

What We Don’t Need

This week Labour releases its tax policy. We are starting to understand what the true cost of a spendthrift government is. National have ruled out tax cuts. ACT will be standing alone on behalf of the hardworking taxpayer while everyone else wants to lump them with the costs of COVID and the Government’s happy-go-lucky approach to it.

A Faster Recovery With Lower Taxes

ACT alone is campaigning for a faster recovery with lower taxes and less debt. Only ACT has released a fully-costed alternative budget in the face of the Government’s plan to borrow $140 billion and counting. At the same time we need a Government that is serious about public health.