Well, that was very successful wasn't it.
It was "explained" to me a few months back that the set-up of the "Super" City, with all its attendant expense, dislocations and disruptions, was intended to make left-wing Auckland governance impossible ever again -- that the cost of campaigning over such a vast new principality would make Auckland safe for "centre-right" government (whatever that means) for most of the foreseeable future. (The idea, you see, being that lefties have no money of their own with which to sell themselves.)
The ACT Party's entire political capital of fifteen years was put behind this ruse. After all, we've been waiting fifteen years to see what they would do when they got to where they always wanted to go: a seat at the top table. "The battle for freedom is not a battle of ideas," we were told. "The ACT Party exists simply to earn parliamentary representation and get a place in government, and when we do, look out!"
So after fifteen years of nothing doing and ACT finally does get itself a ministry, a whole ministry to do what it wanted with, we suddenly find out what it was all about for all those years that ACT supporters kept the faith, and kept up their donations.
It was for this!
It wasn't to gut local government, or put the chains back on. It wasn't to constrain the councils and remove the "power of general competence" that Sandra Less gave them years ago, following which ratepayers everywhere have been paying the price. No, after fifteen years waiting for a ministry, the most important thing Rodney Hide could find to do was to make Auckland safe for Len Brown.
So much for the idea that the ACT Party has any idea what it's doing.
Or that it’s possible to somehow trick people into freedom and smaller government, instead of ;oudly and openly advocating the ideas that would make either possible.