The bouncy orange condom man visited my mailbox today.
I really love the concept of Citizens Initiated Referenda but they have never lived up to their promise. I can’t think of one that was not muddleheaded even if I agreed with the general concept.
Here is this year’s effort:
This is another one of those run-on questions so beloved by petitioners. In their effort get the result they want they have conflated several concepts. With this wording even those who support selling 100% of the power companies along with KiwiRail, the Post Office, and the Chatham Islands should really vote no. A simple “Do you wish the government to stop selling assets?” would have served up a clearer message.
But this referendum is not designed to change the government’s policy (as if they could). By making people who actually support the asset sales (they exist) answer in the affirmative, the result will become a reed with which to whip the government. Turnout, not helped by the mouthful of a question, will be low so the opposition will be able to say that the asset sales are only supported by 15% (or whatever) of the population. Nevermind that only another 20% (or whatever) bothered to vote no.
There is another point, and sadly here I have to agree with David Farrar here. Ugh, I feel so dirty, but I will carry on.
For those who haven’t been paying attention, the last 2 elections went something like this:
The electorate has already voted twice to sell assets, it was a big issue in both of the last two elections and nobody can act surprised about the government’s direction.
There is another general election next year. Objections should be raised then.