Friday, December 12, 2008

Turns out it's not just the disgruntled losers of the left

If you're feeling just a tad uncomfortable with the new government's first steps in power, you're not alone: notoriously Tory paper The New Zealand Herald has an editorial and an opinion piece from the political editor decrying National's methods.

The editorial, "Drug decision should be left to Pharmac", addresses "the ad hoc funding of Herceptin":

"National's decision to disregard Pharmac creates several problems. In the first instance, the Herceptin extension sets a difficult precedent. It suggests the Government is open to the sort of pressure that prompted the coining of the rule of rescue. Other small groups of sufferers may impose just as strong an emotional pull. Wisely, the previous government was content to leave such tough decisions to Pharmac, a body tasked with, and experienced in, making them.

... Ironically, a National government established Pharmac in part to prevent just this lobbying."

Meanwhile, political editor Audrey Young sez, "New Government wrong to ram through legislation":

Legislation is being rammed through the House without going through the scrutiny of select committees. Five bills are to be put through all stages this week and next.

... It might be okay for National to push one bill through all stages under urgency but there is no excuse for so many to be - other than to give the perception that the Government has ''momentum''.

Pushing bills through all stages without such scrutiny should be reserved for exceptional circumstances.

... National argued strongly before the election that Labour's changes to the emissions trading scheme bill warranted a return to select committee scrutiny.

In the words of Steve Maharey, perhaps that was just one of those things you say in Opposition."

On a related note, I created what I hope might serve as a hub for people organising political discussion and activism here on Facebook. Please pop over and take a look!

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