Mike Munro, writing in the Weekend Herald, as usual, did not fail to disappoint. To most people this government has been the worst in living memory, but not to Mike Munro. On Munro’s bucket list of people to criticise is one, not unsurprisingly, Christopher Luxon.  Mike is convinced that the man who was CEO of Air NZ can’t add up. This would seem, on the face of it, a rather discourteous comment to make towards a man who very successfully ran major companies both here and abroad.

I researched Mike, thinking he might have achieved something similar and so be in a position to comment from experience. It seems not. Communications and allied government activities appear to be more Mike’s background. Probably one of the most notable entries on Mike’s CV would be working for the woman who, single-handedly, destroyed this country and is currently being heckled on the streets of Canada. She’s being accused of emitting excess carbon dioxide on her gadabouts.

Not to worry, Mike is so convinced that Christopher is dumb at maths that he’s reverted to childhood and come up with a nursery rhyme to suit. He starts his article entitled ‘The hole in National’s credibility’ with an air of juvenility saying, ‘There’s a hole in your tax bucket, dear Christopher, a hole. And with what shall you mend it?’ According to Mike the remedy so far has been to try and swagger the problem away.

Mike ruminates over various numbers that might constitute the supposed hole but can’t figure it out any more than the economists can. He says the foundations of the edifice known as National’s Back Pocket Boost are beginning to crumble. National, says Mike, is heroically claiming that the numbers in the PREFU don’t make the funding of about $15b of tax cuts over four years any more difficult. It’s like they haven’t noticed how tight the finances are, he says. Mike might like to reveal who’s responsible for this shocking state of affairs.

He might also like to know how few believe the PREFU figures any more than he believes National’s figures. There is an element of the pot calling the kettle black here. You could reasonably argue that the PREFU figures are no more believable than National’s tax ones. David Farrar makes the point that tax forecasts are inherently variable. He reminds us that the current tax take was $3.5 billion less than forecast in the Budget. That figure, David says, is ten times the hole claimed in National’s foreign buyers tax. Where are the journalists on this? Another case of facts not suiting the narrative.

The economic performance of the Labour Party has been at best woeful and at worst deplorable. The reckless wasting of taxpayers’ money is worthy of a summons to appear in the court of public opinion. That appearance is due on October 14 and a guilty verdict appears the most likely outcome. Grant Robertson, if he doesn’t cut off his imaginary ankle bracelet and abscond, will have a good few years to cool his heels. Mike should be reflecting on this rather than a hole in Christopher’s bucket. I would suggest Christopher’s bucket holds more water than Grant’s ever has.

Perhaps Mike thinks Grant, a university debater cum political hack and backroom office boy, is better at economic management than the man who has run both Unilever in Canada, as President and CEO, and Air NZ as CEO. Under Luxon, Air NZ returned record profits, and saw all-time high customer satisfaction scores and the highest levels of staff engagement. In a political sense, the company is the country, the customer is the voter and the staff are his MPs. If he achieves with National what he achieved with Air NZ then two or, most likely, three terms in government await.

Come election night we all know who will be in need of a bucket – Mike and his band of nonfunctional, unproductive comrades. They’ll be throwing up, and not just their hands, in utter disbelief at the indigestible figures. Little (including Angry Andy) will they realise they have only themselves to blame. They will go down in history as the Party that managed to turn an almighty victory in 2020 into a calamitous defeat in just over a thousand days.

Let’s hope they’re all at Party HQ on election night because, as the old saying goes, ‘misery loves company’.

A right-wing crusader. Reached an age that embodies the dictum only the good die young. Country music buff. Ardent Anglophile. Hates hypocrisy and by association left-wing politics.