When I set up this blog, I did so with the intention of promoting classical liberalism and not with the intention of endorsing any political party. Unfortunately, my primary motivation for writing, as it has turned out, is anger. As such, I usually only work up the motivation to write something when someone on the Left advocates something stupid. So while I haven’t endorsed anyone on the Right, I have frequently dis-endorsed those on the Left.
This is no doubt partly reflective of my various personality flaws, but it’s also because there are simply no classically liberal parties in Parliament. ACT, who could be, have yet to shed their socially conservative element, as was made all too clear during the debacle that followed Brash’s tentative suggestion to maybe decriminalise cannabis a little bit at some point. Maybe.
So, I shall cleave to my original purpose and refrain from giving a positive endorsement to any one party in this election. I will be voting, however.
I stand firmly behind my dis-endorsement of all parties on the Left. Labour under Phil Goff has veered wildly toward its Old Labour, unionist roots. This, combined with the fact that any Labour-led government oozing forth from this election would include a substantial Green contingent, would make it the most statist, interventionist, heavy-handed meddlesome government since Muldoon. Not since McGillicuddy Serious has anyone proposed so great a leap backward as would be visited upon us by Goff and his five-headed chimera.
While some of their policies have merit, taken as a whole, particularly as a coalition, a left-wing coalition would be economically ruinous.
While the current government have not shown the flinty, reformist zeal of Roger Douglas or Ruth Richardson, they have demonstrated a willingness to incur some political risk to advance an economically liberal agenda. This is the first government in New Zealand history I am aware of that has passed a zero budget in election year. And starved of the oxygen that the proposed partial sell off of the state-power companies has provided, it’s hard to believe that the Left’s campaign would have got the legs it has done.
When you vote this weekend, I urge you to use your vote to keep the current government in power. They’re not classical liberals, but they’re a bloody sight better than the alternative.