Including a podcast of the weekly hoon with co-hosts Bernard Hickey and Peter Bale, plus special guests Robert Patman from the University of Otago and former Labour MP Sue Moroney
I listen to the USA PBS Newshour, Democracy Now, and Colbert online. All spent a significant amount of time reporting on Jacinda's "retirement". That has never happened before her time as PM. Not even John Key or Helen Clarke. NZ elections were rarely reported on. Before Clarke (and the Lord of the Rings), few with less than a graduate degree even knew where NZ was. (When my mom in the USA tried to send packages here after we moved here in 95, the postal people rarely knew where she was sending it to...many thought it was in Europe. Seriously.) Jacinda is an international superstar – more than any leader that I know of bar Volodymyr Zelenskyy. I have seen nothing like it.
She had death threats against her family - tripling in the last few years. She had a 4th estate harassing her (in my "study" 2:1 all Herald-syndicated political op-ed pieces attacked Labour). The business community (and perhaps the Reserve Bank) have appeared to have possibly engaged in a capital strike to get rid of her. Who could withstand that?
Thank you so positive about the future. Sue Moroney inclusion was a bonus, not least as it provides a gender balance. However so far in my reading/listening the 'blokes' have shown they understand how to be unbiased.
The big question is whether Chris Hipkins will change the course of the Labour Government to steer it to victory. Clearly the identitarianism must go, and that sack of divisive policies that have angered large sections of the population: 'Three Waters', ill-defined co-governance, 'hate speech' legislation, income insurance and the rest.
But that won't be enough. We learn from the NZ Election Study 2020 that the typical swinging voter is a 52-year-old woman (probably European) who owns her own home and has an income between $102,000 and $149,000 a year; is a National voter who swung to Labour in 2020 but this year will return to National, her true home; she may think herself 'centrist', but is much more likely to be right-wing; she does not strongly agree that income differences are too large, but may somewhat agree, though is just as likely to disagree; she may sort of think the Government is responsible for providing a decent living for the unemployed, but is much more likely to think the Government definitely should not, than definitely should; she either thinks the Government spend on welfare benefits is about right, or thinks it should be reduced, and definitely doesn't want it to spend more.
In short, forget the swinging voter.
Instead, look to the 700,000 who didn't vote in 2020 because they saw no one who spoke for them.
Will Labour under Hipkins begin immediately to do the things it ought to have done in the past five years but hasn't:
Bring in land tax, and lower the threshold for the top tax rate of 39% to $130,000 a year, just above double the median fulltime income. Apply the 39% rate to all trusts and closely-held companies.
Use that revenue to make the first $25,000 of everyone's income tax-free.
Or better, introduce a UBI, an unconditional basic income for everyone.
Make NZ Superannuation a tax-free benefit, boost it to $800 a week to meet the renting retired person's cost of living, but put everyone who signs up for it on a special tax rate of 50% on all other income, so that Super is better for those who need it and worse for those who don't.
Make early-childhood care and education free for all.
Make medical care and dental care free, accessible, timely, and effective.
Restore unemployment and other benefits to the levels they were before Ruth Richardson trashed them in 1991, so that people can live in dignity.
And for everyone's sake, forget promising to help people to buy their own wildly overpriced home: instead, build 100,000 state houses for secure, lifetime income-moderated rent by all who want them.
Yes please to having Sue Moroney another time.