Anger and disappointment on the left
For many on the left, the decision is an indictment of the whole idea that this Government will be transformational. Danyl Mclauchlan argues that the CGT programme was one of four key policies agendas for this Government – the others being KiwiBuild, the Carbon Zero Act, and the Wellbeing Budget – and there are clear problems now in delivering them .
He despairs that Labour axed the tax after first initiating “one of the most bafflingly disastrous public policy debates imaginable, making John Key’s flag-change campaign look like the Normandy landings”.
He says any strategic wins from ditching the tax, will come “at a cost of one of Labour’s most important, long-term policies, and it was their failure to control their coalition partner or even attempt to make the argument for taxation reform that forced them to pay such a bitterly high price.”
Mclauchlan argues that Ardern could have won the debate and got a mandate for the changes, but simply didn’t bother. In contrast, even John Key, managed to use his political capital to campaign on and win unpopular policies.
Other leftwing bloggers are very unhappy. No Right Turn is now calling for a leftwing boycott of the Labour Party: “If you want change, don’t vote Labour, don’t donate to Labour, don’t volunteer for Labour. Give your vote, your money, your time and effort to another party, any other party that promises change, than the one who betrayed you. Because if you don’t, Labour will continue to treat you like a fool, and continue to promise change while delivering none”
They also argue the decision means the Government won’t have the money to afford many of their future policy goals: “Effective policy costs money, and this government has just robbed itself of that vital tool. Remember this next time they plead “poverty” as an excuse for not doing something: they chose to be poor. They chose to have a government which could not afford things. They chose to not be able to do the things they promised”