A couple of policies highlight the gulf between Liarbour and National.
First, let us look at National's health policy, which proposes voluntary bonding for certain medical staff.
The policy cleverly targets those skills we need the most and does so in a most cost-effective way.
It is not a simple case of simply throwing money at a problem.
Bonding would still be voluntary so there's no restrictions on freedom at all.
People can still bugger off overseas if they want, but they then won't get the extra help.
Indeed, that is the problem with a universal allowance.
Despite the extra cash thrown at the students, they could still bugger off to Australia, the UK, or wherever, whose economies would then benefit from the taxpayer-funded education, while the skill shortages would remain back in New Zealand, the country the country that had funded the graduates' skills.
So well done National for coming up with a sensible, cost effective policy that will deliver positive results.
As an academic, I thought she might have remembered her own schooldays.
Obviously, it was such long time ago, as indeed it is getting that way for myself.
But I recall that once you reach the later years of schooling , classrooms are split into two, unofficially, between the 'swots' and the 'dossers'.
Obviously, the swots want to learn and get on, while the dossers do not. And what do they do, but disrupt the classroom, making it harder for the rest to learn.
Rather than keeping people in class who do not want to learn and make it harder for the others, government would be best to let them go. You don't need to be too educated to stack supermarket shelves. That's where these dossers need to go. I also wonder if Clark's policy is also aimed at keeping dole queues artificially down.
But anyway, I would rather government funding focus on the basics. There are still too many schools where standards are already too low. More effort is now required on the 3Rs. How much are trendy teaching methods to blame for cases like this?
UPDATE: Liberty Scott looks at Dear Leader still wanting to 'own' 16 and 17yos.