I know it was well before Simon ever got rolled, but you may remember we predicted that the election was going to be way closer than a lot of people were saying because by the time the cold and dark and despair of July and august came around and the economy would be weighing very heavily on a lot of people’s minds.
Well Simon is gone, and so is Todd, but Judith has worked it all out.
The economy is the nuclear moment for many of us, and we might have spent a bit of time on The Warehouse these past 24 hours, but it is no different to the plight of many hundreds if not thousands of companies all over this country who have in fact gone through or will go through exactly the same thing.
Laying hundreds off is no different to laying one off if you’re that one. And the reason this will play into the way we vote is because the halcyon days of the lock down are well past, and we have moved on with the inevitable, what next scenario.
The prime minister, you will note, still talks about the pandemic, still sells it as being real and present when it isn’t.
The reason she is doing that is because they worked out scaring us was good for polling. That twee line last week about recognising that there was an election coming but really there was a pandemic to deal with was calculated because they know with Collins real opposition has arrived.
And they know historically economies swing elections and they know historically National are the party of the economy.
And as each day goes by and more and more New Zealanders have their future tipped upside down sooner or later, people are going to start asking ,where is the recovery, where is the plan, where is the growth.
Knowing that, Grant Robertson using other people’s money isn’t any sort of long term answer.
The fact we have been in level one now for a while has helped, and the government gets credit for that, but the level of artificiality about the place is still staggering and that’s coming to an end.
If The Warehouse, having taken the wage subsidy, can still lay off the numbers they are, and they’re far from the only ones, how many more join that queue come September 1st?
And how many of those jobless quite rightly ask themselves whether teddy bears in windows, closed borders and a tanked economy with no real answer outside welfare is really worth voting for.