Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Pure Perigo

ACT politicians are "conviction politicians," says Helen Clark?  Bah humbug, says Lindsay Perigo at SOLO:

6n_douglas2_150308_180One great thing about [Roger Douglas], as I argued recently, is that he's a conviction politician. But his convictions are not libertarian. If anything, Roger's return opens things up even more for Libertarianz. Rodney's born-again soft-cockery and Roger's compulsionism mean the chasm between Libz and ACT is greater than ever. 

And what about those 'cabinet prospects' for Dodger Rugless that have got a few people hyperventilating?  Perigo again:

Rodney wants National to commit to putting Roger in cabinet. Key says: "I'm not going to go and run a government that slashes benefits and privatises off all the assets that the state continues to own; I'm not going to run a radical agenda." Rodney says he wants nothing more radical than "caps" on taxes and spending.

Time was when blokes flashed their members to see who had the biggest. These guys are competing to see who has the limpest.

Nothing much left to say, is there?


  1. I think John Key said it all...and the more he says things like that, the more a certain demographic will leave the National party to ACT or Libz.

  2. PC, you should ask your comrades and contributors at Solo to take the Libz debate out to the wider world of blogosphere. All they do over there is just barking aloud from distance that nobody hears them? If you want to be serious about contesting a seat in the coming election, then take the debate out there. I see LibertyScott is almost a one man band in the world of blogosphere (many rightwing blogs, business blogs, leftwing blogs, nutter's blogs) arguing hard & promoting the the Libz principles. I also see Sus debating in other blogs as well? Where are the rest of the so called diehard Libz?

    I recalled a comment here at NotPC last year (2007), that the majority of the crowd who read this blog or follower of this blog (including Solo blog) are converts already. If you want to win minds & hearts, then take the debate out to the wider world.

    See, readers at The Standards, for example, (I assume that) most of them don't come to read NotPC or Solo, so they don't get to know about the Libz philosophies. You see LibertyScott & Sus who go there to debate, now The Standards readers are starting to take note of what actually Libz stands for.

    Motivate your troops to take the fight out there. Follow what LibertyScott & Sus are doing, because it is pointless to criticize the current government's policies (or other political parties) during the regular Friday night drinks get together at Ken (watching super-14) or at the Castle, when all involved are no one from outside but Libz themselves (the already converts).

    I bet you that no one hardly reads the Solo blog apart from the Libz members themselves?

  3. You might say that the Libertarianz have pure convictions but they will never be politicians. Which means they will never amount to anything.

    Act are not ideologically pure but at least they have a libertarian bent. If you actually believe in the superiority of libertarian policies then the best way to convert significant numbers of voters to seeing your way is to show them it working in practice. And for that to happen you need to be in parliament.

    Sadly, the perfect is indeed the enemy of the good and a vote for the Libz (with our MMP rules) is essentially a vote for the continence of the Labour vs Labour lite hegemony.

  4. The other way to look at this is that their positions reflect what wins votes. Positions nearer to the libertarian view are it seems, sadly, unelectable in NZ.

  5. This will make very litle difference to ACT's fortunes. They have several vocal supporters on the internet, but that is not indicative of their support at ground level.

    I think this will be the first election where NZers show a mature understanding of MMP - I predict 3rd party votes are going to drop away significantly.

    ACT is not going to eat into Libz votes - if you think Key is neither fish nor fowl, ACT is far worse given their posturing about 'freedom'.

    Agree Liberty Scott does a good job. He always makes a mature argument - appealing to reason not emotion - over at The Standard.

  6. "The other way to look at this is that their positions reflect what wins votes. Positions nearer to the libertarian view are it seems, sadly, unelectable in NZ."

    I'm not sure this is completely true, you know.

    In 1984, the New Zealand won 12% of the vote with a pretty hardarse libertarian platform, and with that threw National out -- and once Douglas went about implementing parts of that platform, Labour were voted back in with an even greater majority in 1987 with a mandate for more of the same.

    Looks to me like a reasonable appetite there for something towards the more hardarse end of the spectrum.

    And then there's the ACT party. It achieved its best electoral success in the years when it was offering up the radicalism of abolishing income tax and abolishing regulation -- whereas now when it promises to "cap" tax and "slow the growth" of new regulation it just looks more and more irrelevant has begun disappearing off the map.

    And what do you think got National back in the game under Don Brash? It was a misguided hope by many, for sure, but what they hoped for wasn't what Bill English was offering three years before, that's for sure.

    So I'd say there's still a significant unmet appetite for libertarian views in the electorate, perhaps 200-300,000 people who still feel politically homeless, and still able to sway an election.

  7. "PC, you should ask your comrades and contributors at Solo to take the Libz debate out to the wider world of blogosphere."

    Yes, there's something in what you say. Obviously nearly 1000 a day read this blog, and a slightly lesser number read SOLO and the Libz site (though many more read Libz and SOLO press releases and Op Eds), but Libz supporters and SOLOists (which I can assure you are two separate things) would be well advised to spread their commentary further through the blogosphere than they do now if they really do want to disseminate their good ideas more widely.

  8. You guys need to find a willing electorate like a New Zealand version of the 14th Congressional District of Texas and get a good thing going there and work your way into Parliament. I don't agree with every policy of the Libertarian Party but I do with most and I'd like to see a voice for freedom and personal responsibility in Parliament.

  9. PC, can you point out to me any government in this world who has a spending cap?

    I mean, it's not radical, everyone has it, right?

  10. Yeah PC, a big chasm between Act and Libz now, enough for you to crack 500 party votes this year.

    Why do you bother?

  11. Rodney's Tax Cap and Reg Responsibility platform is definitely not soft. The dynamic effects of this approach are profound and powerful, with a chance of being saleable upfront. Maybe there is a bit of hardness envy going around.

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  13. FFS you ACT soft cocks, maintaining government spending at current levels is terrible when your own press releases note it has gone up $20B since 1999 (and that's despite gross underfunding of the military).

    Now repeat after me: "We need to cut government spending." There, see if you can say it without scaring yourselves, let alone the voters.

  14. Andrew, you've missed something:

    The Tax Cap allows increases with inflation.

    As long as the economy grows quicker than inflation, then government spending reduces as a % of GDP overall.

  15. "I think this will be the first election where NZers show a mature understanding of MMP - I predict 3rd party votes are going to drop away significantly"

    Anonymous, the 3rd party vote already dropped away significantly at the last election, with the "presidential" focus on Clark and Brash. I do agree the third party vote will again be squeezed this year with the Clark(?) v Key battle, but no more than last time.

    In 2005, the third party vote totalled 19.8% (including parties that didn't make it in Parliament).

    In the 2002 General Election, the third party vote was approaching double that, at 37.81%

  16. do not seem to grasp that a major cause of inflation is Government spending.

    Were Government spending to fall in actual dollars..(e.g the NZ Government slashed spending to, say, $30 billion per year and froze it at that figure)...there is no inflation problem to worry about.

    Furthermore, were taxes slashed so we only collect the $30 billion...(in the example I gave above)...and we continued to cut taxes periodically so we only collected and spent $30 billion per year, all would be rosy in New Zealand.


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