INDEPENDENT NEWS

Irresponsible Act opts for Lotto economics - Clark

Published: Mon 15 Nov 1999 11:58 AM
Labour leader Helen Clark said today that Act had abandoned any claim to economic credibility by proposing tax cuts funded by asset sales.
"Mr Prebble used to say that good government was good housekeeping," Ms Clark said.
"Every good housekeeper knows that selling assets to pay the bills is a desperation measure, not a sustainable way to keep the books balanced.
"Act's dodgy budget starts with the even more extraordinary assumption that somebody will pay $1.2 billion over book value for Television New Zealand. This figure appears to have been plucked from thin air.
"Act's figures show about half the asset sale proceeds being used to fund a tax cut. Pursuing this irresponsible strategy would only lead the country into a mad downward spiral of further asset sales and decimated public services.
"When Act's expected Lotto bounty from TVNZ failed to appear, it would have to start selling everything else. New Zealand Post, the electricity state-owned enterprises, National Radio, ACC, schools, hospitals, water supply networks and roads would be part of Mr Prebble's garage sale.
"When everything was gone - and probably long before that - Act would have to slash public services to match its massive cuts to Government revenue. This is the brutal truth it is leaving out of its bumper-sticker election campaign. Mr Prebble prefers New Zealanders not to think about the American-style health, welfare and education systems his policies would inevitably produce.
"I believe New Zealanders want public services rebuilt, not slashed irreparably. People have had enough of state asset sales and they want to keep what remains. Mr Prebble's plans to take both asset sales and public service cuts to new extremes show he is trapped in a blinkered ideology. His plans to use asset sale proceeds to balance the books rather than repay debt show that ideology is now coupled with total irresponsibility."

Next in New Zealand politics

A New National For New Zealand
By: New Zealand National Party
Cancer Society Hopes Final Pharmac Report Is Stronger
By: Cancer Society
New Zealand Response To Assist Peace And Stability In Solomon Islands
By: New Zealand Government
Child Poverty Monitor 2021 Highlights Persistent Inequities In Rates Of Child Poverty
By: Child Poverty Action Group
Bridges Appointed Finance & Infrastructure Spokesperson
By: New Zealand National Party
Waitangi Week
By: Waitangi National Trust
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILE © Scoop Media