New Zealand's two big parties would both like to make infrastructure an election issue this year. The socialist party wants to tax and borrow and spend to build infrastructure; by contrast, the socialist party promises to borrow and tax and spend to build infrastructure.
It's always good to have a real choice at an election.
Naturally, with the subject becoming a political football -- with nationalisation being the new black, and privatisation becoming the new 'p' -- it's an area from which investors are wisely steering well clear, and so far this election cycle most intelligent commentators have too.
Thank goodness then for a large helping of common sense from Roger Kerr, who opens a piece in the Dominion thus:
Much discussion about infrastructure is confused. What is infrastructure and how is it best provided?
Infrastructure is a loose term covering a collection of industries and assets. The government does not have a major role to play in many of them...
Thus is it not possible to talk sensibly about any general infrastructure problem in New Zealand...
Paul Walker summarises one of the only rational commentaries on NZ's 'infrastructure problem' to emerge in recent months: 'Kerr on Infrastructure.'