Dump MMP or change it?

09/08/2010

A media release from the Business Council for Sustainable Development says a poll shows most of us support changing from MMP.

Thirty eight per cent say they will vote to change to a different voting system and 32% to retain the current MMP one while 26% remain undecided, according to a new nationwide ShapeNZ survey of 2,261 New Zealanders.

When the undecided are invited to specify which option they most lean towards at present, the desire for change becomes firmer. The country then votes  46.6% for change from MMP  37.5% to retain the current MMP system.

After applying leanings, the number of undecided falls from 26% to 11.9%.

The BCSD concludes its release by saying:

The Business Council does not have a policy view on MMP reform. It commissions ShapeNZ to provide the public with an opportunity to contribute to policy making.

The Campaign for MMP, as it’s name implies, does have a policy view on MMP and its take on the same poll is that a modified MMP would be broadly supported.

“Campaign for MMP recognises that many people who support MMP want to change it in some way, and we have strongly supported the government’s initiative to commit to an independent review of MMP.”

“The ShapeNZ survey shows people regard the performance of MMP as better to the old First Past the Post. We think most people don’t want to dump MMP, they want to make it better.”

“The critical message that needs to get out in the lead up to next year’s referendum is that a vote for MMP in 2011 is a vote for setting up a process to improve it,” Sandra Grey said.

This is cart before horse territory.

Voting for a system because you want to change it comes with the risk that you won’t like the changes.


Should the government borrow?

11/04/2009

Should the government borrow:

* to enable middle and upper income families to buy luxuries?

* to buy and maintain high country farms?

* to fund the Families Commission?

* to support a bloated public service?

The survey  commisioned by the Business for Sustainable Development didn’t ask those questions, it just asked if the government should borrow to fund tax cuts.

But if the previous government wasted so much money on these and other money wasting projects the current one wouldn’t have to borrow to fund them now.

Had the previous government  not overtaxed and overspent we’d have had tax cuts long before now.

If it had spent more on policies which promoted economic growth instead of those which stifled it we’d be in a much better position to meet and recover from the recession.

But it did which leaves this government to clean up the mess and get the economy growing again.

Because the previous administration spent the lot, this one has to borrow. That’s not bad in itself as Adolf at No Minister points out:

. . . just so long as the borrowing is funding capital expenditure and only sufficient tax is taken to fund operating costs and service the debt over the lifetime of the asset.

That’s what prudent people and businesses do and it’s not imprudent for governments to do it too.


%d bloggers like this: