Sunday, October 7, 2007

Rod Oram goes into bat for Hubbard and City Vision

It's true. Read his SST column here.

Some teasers:
But finding the best leaders among this crop of candidates is difficult. Most of them offer only vague views on these issues. And voters' overwhelming preoccupation with keeping down rates means that the little debate there is focuses on the minutiae of who spent what rather than on seeking strategic solutions to better governance and financial performance. This is leading to some dishonest campaigning.

The worst case is Citizens & Ratepayers. In a mere two-and-a-half page election manifesto it makes an array of vague promises of all the wonderful things it is going to do for Auckland and yet it also pledges to peg rates to inflation. That's economic nonsense. It simply can't be done. Auckland needs more investment and ratepayers are going to have to pay their fair share.

Citizens & Ratepayers is also indulging in political nonsense. It says it will review Auckland City's 10-year spending plans if it wins control of the council. But it refuses to say which projects they would have to axe in order to keep the lid on rates. People deserve to know what they are voting for.


Auckland City, though, poses a problem. Alex Swney is in many ways the bravest and most interesting candidate, particularly in his views on governance reform. He advocates a two-tier structure: a regional council based on the existing 21 local electorates; and a series of super community boards. He has also shown good leadership and deft local politicking as chief executive of Heart of the City, the CBD business association. But late into the game and with low name recognition, he is an also-ran. Instead, the poll leader is John Banks. He says he learnt a lot from his crushing defeat three years ago. He's promising to be "10% less Banksie" and more conciliatory. "This time I don't think it needs people like me to tell people what to believe. I'm not thinking of big new developments. I got into a lot of difficulties at the ballot box last time."

This new persona is vague and contradictory, yet often still belligerent on the campaign trail. Worse, this new Banks will disappoint his loyal supporters who loved his old confrontational style. And this new Banks, so inexperienced in the art of constructive compromise, will disappoint any new supporters. He admits that if he were elected mayor, working effectively with City Vision councillors "would be the greatest test in my life". So that leaves Dick Hubbard. He deserves a second term. He learnt and achieved a lot in his first term, notably rebuilding investment, council capability, decision making and a sense of long-term vision for the city which were all deeply damaged by his two predecessors. And he did so with the severe handicap of an unreliable deputy mayor, Bruce Hucker, who was foisted on him.

Above all, he has the commitment and leadership skills needed to help the Auckland region achieve effective governance reform in time for the next election.
Let's get this straight. Len Brown (Communist) good. Dick Hubbard (hopeless idiot and Labour in drag) good. John Banks (ex National cabinet minister) bad. Cit Rats (Nats in drag) bad.

Too little, too late Rod. Banks will win in a land.....slide. The City Visionless, big-spending, socialists are goneburger. Not even you, the leftie SST or the Herald can stop this now.

If my wife didn't want a Sunday newspaper in the house I would cancel my subscription forthwth on the back of this article. It is ill conceived and partisan hackery at its worst. The reason I won't buy the Herald at all, and never will again, is because of the hatchet job it did on the Banks campaign in 2004. And now the SST is dishing up the same tripe.



Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Did Hubbard give him a lifetime's supply of crunchy crapola?

Aaron Bhatnagar said...

Don't be so down on Rod Oram Gooner. He was such a pompous windbag in his article that it took him until the every end to say he was a Hubbard supporter. Most people will have stopped reading by paragraph 2 or 3.

Had he put his endorsement of Hubbard right up front, in the headlines even, it might have been unhelpful for Banks. So, putting it in perspective, this rooster can't even endorse or put the knife in properly.

But, best of all, Oram's article came 2/3rds of the way through the voting period. What kind of help is that for Dick Hubbard? Where was Rod Oram in the week leading up to the voting papers being posted?



Good Lord, Gooner!

I didn't know people still read Rod Oram, let alone him seriously.

I haven't done so in ages.


take him seriously