So it's a fair question to ask: if and when this lot do get thrown out, how much better will the other lot be?
If talk was action, we'd seem to be a whole lot better off. At last month's National Party conference, for example, John Key told his troops, "we believe in the principles of the National Party. We believe in individual freedom and individual responsibility. We believe the government should underpin our society but not dominate it." Sounds good, doesn't it. And blogger and National Party cheerleader Insolent Prick insisted here at Not PC the other day that "National believes in reducing the size of the state, and encouraging private enterprise."
Now, I'm naturally pleased to hear noises like these, and to hear at least one National supporter with his heart on his suit's sleeve affirming what are supposed to be his party's principles.
I'm pleased, but (given the appallingly statist performance last time the Nats were near the levers of power) I really wonder if a word of it is really true?
At the time he made that statement, I invited Insolent Prick and and any other National Party supporters reading that thread if they could list for me the top ten most substantive ways in which National proposes to reduce the size of the state, and encourage private enterprise.
I got no response.
Assuming he overlooked the challenge, I figured I'd issue it more openly, right here on the front page. Specifically,
what are the top ten most substantive ways in which National proposes to . In what ten ways does the party whose principles promote greater freedom and increased personal responsibility actually plan to roll back the state, and to actually promote greater freedom and reduced coercion?Feel free to post and let me know, since I'm sure there are readers here as curious as I am to hear what those top ten policy planks are -- or even if there are ten.
And here's a second related challenge:
just how many of the Clark Government's scurrilous attacks on freedom have they clearly and openly pledged to overturn?I suspect the answers to both challenges will be published on a very small postcard, but please feel free to correct me. I promise to publish all substantive and provably correct answers here on the front page as they appear.
[NB: If any other party supporters wish to promote their own party's policies as judged by the same criteria, then please do feel free. I assume we can take it as read that Libertarianz is one party at least that fits the bill.]
UPDATE: David Farrar offers his contribution to the challenge (about which I'll make no comment at this stage). First, the Nats' top ten planks to reduce the size of the state, and encourage private enterprise:
- Lower Taxes
- Allow state house tenants to buy their state house
- Partial privatisations of some SOEs
- Enable private/public partnerships for new roads
- Greater subsidies for private schools, allowing more poorer families to attend
- Tax Deductions for childcare so parents can choose public or private without discrimination
- Use private hospital capacity more in health sector
- Move government assistance from universal to targeted in some areas
- Reinstate private management of prisons
- Allow private sector competition for accident insurance
- Repeal the Electoral Finance Act!