Rodney has a point, even if he uses Jacinda to make it

Rodney Hide has a good point, even if he had to use Jacinda Ardern to make it.

Loo-gate provided new Labour deputy leader Jacinda Ardern an opportunity to stand for something and win some votes. She didn’t take it.

The mini-scandal was occasioned by her declaring her proudest DIY moment was installing a new toilet in her Pt Chev house.

The problem being that in her part of New Zealand that’s an offence under the Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Act.

Following investigation by the board, Ardern apologised and escaped with a warning rather than a charge.

Ridiculous isn’t it. you’d think that the Act in question was a hangover from our unionised days, but I looked it up and it turns out the Act was passed in 2006 by the Clark government.

[H]ow glorious would it have been if she had gone into bat on behalf of homeowners and business people everywhere?

Ardern worked in Prime Minister Helen Clark’s office and has been an MP for nine years.

If she can’t figure out the DIY rules, what hope the rest of us?

She could have usefully and forcefully made that point.

She could have opined it’s impossible for people to be compliant with the law – unless they are wealthy and able to bring in professional help for every little job.

We are overwhelmed by rules and regulations at home and at work.

We are like Ardern. We don’t know what we can and can’t do. We just get on with the job and hope we don’t get caught.

If Ardern had ripped into the madness she would have had those of us on the sidelines cheering.

We would have a champion. Someone who understands how it’s impossible to be compliant with rules you never think of or know about and the worry that engenders that someone from the council, a business competitor or a troublesome neighbour can make the sort of trouble Ardern suffered.

Besides, what’s the point of the rule? The toilet was successfully installed and there has been no issue. Indeed, it was Ardern’s proudest DIY moment. Good on her. I have had such moments myself.

Why is Government busy robbing homeowners of them?

Why indeed. Like Rodney, my Dad built a house. It was our beach house and I remember him toiling away each weekend building it. It is still standing, and a government MP now has it as his beach house. The house is easily 40 years old. My Dad was a perfectionist, but I don’t think he’d try and build a house these days with all the silly regulations.

Red tape is robbing a generation of the ability to own a home. It’s robbing them of the satisfaction of providing for their family. It’s not just costing us homes but our jobs, too.

It’s a huge cost to being in business.

It has become impossible to hire or fire without professional advice. Everywhere you turn, mad rules and regulations and the need to get consent are costing us homes and opportunities. We could be so much better off.

Ardern had a taste of the madness. Her brightest DIY moment was blighted. She could have stuck up for herself. And in doing so, stuck up for all of us. But no. She apologised.

She is part of the problem, not the solution.

Yes, she is.


– NZ Herald