Friday, September 29, 2023

Lushington D. Brady: Election 2023 - How Deep Do You Want It?

The Climate Cult has New Zealand’s political class almost completely in its grip. You can vote for any colour, so long as it’s green. The spectrum of party policies ranges from wishy-washy mint to poisonous emerald.

The sad truth is that the entire political class is so terrified of the media inquisitors that no one dares utter even a whisper of heresy.

Our extreme summer made it a top-five issue among Kiwis – and the potential for wildfires and scorching temperatures in a coming El Nino-influenced season promises to place it front and centre once more.

Even through a pandemic and a cost-of-living crisis, surveys have shown increasingly widespread concern over climate change – and an appetite for action from our political and business leaders.

What a load of codswallop, to put it kindly. Ipsos surveys show that “climate change” has barely blipped New Zealanders’ concerns over the past 18 months – and is very much not a “top five” issue right now. What really matters to Kiwis are bread and butter issues: the cost of living, crime, housing crisis, and healthcare. It’s the economy, stupids.

Globally, surveys by Ipsos and Pew likewise show that climate change doesn’t even make the top issues worrying people. More notably, climate change is a boutique issue which vexes less than a third of minds in rich Western countries – and barely registers with people in poor countries. People around the world worry about much the same things Kiwis do – and climate change ain’t one of them.

But the media-political class don’t live in the same world as real people – and it shows in their policies.

Of the two major parties, there’s green with a putrid tinge of pink, or toxic blue-green algae.

Labour is sticking with plans to measure and price emissions at farm level by 2025 – with all raised revenue going back to the sector to help it meet its climate targets – or otherwise force the sector into the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) by 2026 […]

National, too, is putting the ETS – which it views as the primary vehicle to meet our 2030 and 2050 targets – square in its policy sights.

“National, too” might as well be the party’s motto.

Especially when they’re fully committed to the same demented “renewables” policies that have been such a disaster in Europe, and are currently crippling Australia’s energy grid while driving power prices through the roof.

Elsewhere, National proposes to fast-track the consent process for new renewable power projects – it touts a goal of doubling the country’s renewable energy generation – while scrapping the need for consent for upgrading existing transmission and local lines infrastructure.

It’s also floated building 10,000 more charging stations for electric vehicles.

Seriously, if Labour and the Greens jumped off a cliff, National would be running right behind them, screaming, “Wait for us!”

Even the supposed Great Policy Difference is little more than window-dressing.

The party would reverse the ban on new permits for offshore oil and gas exploration – one of the boldest climate moves of the Labour-led government’s last term – and cancel long-gestating pumped-hydro plans for Lake Onslow.

Because pumped-hydro has been such a stunning success, here in Australia.

The only real difference between the majors is how deep they’re going to shove it up your arses. Do you want “just the tip” from Act and National, or go balls-deep with Labour and their tail-waggers, the Greens?

Labour is sticking by that project, its offshore oil and gas ban, and the subsidy for EV buyers, who’d also benefit from its plans to put charging hubs in place every 150km to 200km on main highways by 2028.

This week, Labour announced more plans in a climate “manifesto” – including a new post of a Minister for Just Transitions, a 12-point plan to boost renewable electricity generation, removing diesel generators from schools, pumping $300m more into NZ Green Investment Finance and steering $50m towards climate-focused research.

Though Labour is maintaining many of its existing flagship policies – including pledges to phase out coal boilers by 2037, offer rebates to homeowners for green retrofits and improve access to public transport – it this year notably ditched its “cash-for-clunkers” scheme that was aimed at helping clean up our aged vehicle fleet.

Probably because that policy was such an obvious, embarrassing failure for the Rudd-Gillard Government here, ten years ago, that even Labour in NZ had to see it.

Then it’s time to wallow in the deep-green swamp.

The Green Party goes to the election with pledges to price farm emissions, ensure government decisions match efforts required to limit warming to 1.5C, and enable the independent Climate Change Commission to set the supply of units in the ETS.

It saw pricing farm emissions as an urgent priority and didn’t support Cabinet-set levy-based schemes, considering them too vulnerable to lobbying.

It’d also phase out nitrogen fertiliser on farms, ban all oil and gas exploration, increase public transport subsidies, raise fees on high-polluting vehicle buys and place a hard deadline on importing fossil-fuelled cars.

But the Greens look almost like paragons of hard-headed sense, compared to the scribble-face loons.

Te Pati Maori, meanwhile, has put forward dramatically different climate policy for agriculture – including pulling methane emissions into ETS and phasing out synthetic nitrogen fertiliser by 2025.

It also wanted an end to new onshore oil and gas permits – and a withdrawal of existing onshore and offshore oil and gas permits within five years – while proposing a national Maori strategy for renewable energy and clean tech.

As well, the party would ear-mark $1b for Maori-owned community energy projects and solar panel and insulation instillations on marae, kura, homes and papakainga housing developments, as well as $300m for a fund to incentivise Maori farmers to “transition to regenerative and value-add farming practices”.

In other words, the Greens want to turn NZ into Sri Lanka, while Te Pati Maori want to turn it into Venezuela but with voodoo. Best start cultivating a taste for your household pets, Kiwis.

Then there’s the “yeah, but, no, but, yeah, but…” pale-green lot on the supposed right, who know that the Climate Cult are lunatic zealots, but are too scared to say so outright.

At the other end of the political spectrum, Act favoured repealing the Zero Carbon Act and its carbon budgets with a “no-nonsense climate change plan” it said would tie New Zealand’s carbon price to those paid by our top five trading partners.

The party wanted the ETS to have a hard cap on net CO2 emissions while ensuring it created a price to drive reductions – and proposed regulations to provide carbon credits for wood products that stored carbon for at least 50 years.

At the same time, it’s indicated a halt to work to meet our nationally determined contributions set under the Paris Agreement, while also repealing the Clean Car Standard and EV discount and scrapping plans to price farm emissions […]

NZ First held a similar stance on pricing agricultural emissions, which it didn’t support in “any form” unless adopted by trading partners, but it nonetheless supported a standardised reporting of farm-level emissions.

It also backed agricultural emissions mitigations being supported with ETS revenue and funds ear-marked for the purchase of overseas carbon credits.

As the saying goes, you don’t have to believe in Santa to know that people will still celebrate Christmas. Likewise, New Zealanders might not be that concerned about the ultimate Rich People Problem, “climate change”, but that doesn’t mean their parties aren’t going to ram climate derangement up their backsides, whether they want it or not.

Lushington describes himself as Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. This article was first published HERE


Rob Beechey said...

The location of the Wellington based mental asylum is clearly sign posted. We are witnessing a grotesque spectacle in the run up to this deplorable election.. Each candidate is demonstrating how well qualified they are to be admitted so that they can exercise their mental instability onto an ignorant public. The score cards measuring the candidates extreme mental health is being marked by our MSM. The more deranged the more likely they are to receive high marks rewarding them right of passage to the asylum called parliament. Upon arrival these new inmates will conjure up delusional concepts specifically designed to destroy our economy and make all our lives miserable.

Anonymous said...

Then there’s the “yeah, but, no, but, yeah, but…” pale-green lot on the supposed right, who know that the Climate Cult are lunatic zealots, but are too scared to say so outright.

And that is why the woke fascists are getting away with this BS, relying on good men and women doing nothing.

Anonymous said...

Well said Ron B.

So much for our inalienable rights and pursuit of happiness with inmates in charge eh.

I despair.