Are the wheels coming off the bus?

Stacey Kirk writes: Quote:

When Ardern?returns to Parliament on Monday -?following six weeks of maternity leave -?she is set to walk into?a?building storm?over plummeting business confidence that?threatens?to shake the economy in real terms.

In an?interview with?Stuff,?ahead of her return,?Ardern gave assurances that her Government’s agenda did not come at the expense of economic growth.

They went “hand in hand”.

“I absolutely believe that our agenda will grow the economy, will make sure businesses are in a position to grow and prosper, because I need that economic growth to be able to lift the wellbeing of all New Zealanders.

“These are not two separate agendas – they absolutely work hand-in-hand. I think New Zealanders absolutely see my emphasis on the wellbeing of New Zealanders. Now what I’m hoping they’ll also see is the agenda that’s always existed for us around growing the economy,” Ardern said.?End quote.

Lots of hope there, absolutely. She really has no idea. She is saying and praying that there is economic growth, because if she doesn’t get that then all her spending plans are toast.?Quote:

Her comments come at the same time figures showed?a?slight rise in unemployment?- the first since December 2016 – though unemployment remained low. Job creation had slowed, two major construction company had collapsed in recent weeks and?more industrial action was in the offing.?End quote.

Welcome to a Labour government. There is no Michael Cullen in this government.?Quote:

But while economic growth had slowed, the overall picture remained positive. Migration was strong, the Government accounts were solid and spending was up. Despite farmers registering low levels of confidence, commodity prices were strong and the dollar was down, benefiting exporters.?End quote.

But hang on, they wanted to reduce migration? Now it is a plus, and strong.?Quote:

Despite that, New Zealand had dropped from near the top of one OECD table on business confidence, to second from bottom, and that threatened to slow investment and growth.?

Arguments remained over how much of that the Government could reasonably be held responsible for,?but what was once just the “elephant in the room” had become a dark pall that the Government had to address.

National Party finance spokeswoman Amy Adams said the Government had to “change course”.?

“With New Zealanders bombarded with negative economic indicators this week, it’s time for the Government to get its head out of the sand, recognise the damage it’s doing and focus on turning things around.

“Economists are now predicting New Zealand’s economic growth could drop to as low as 1.5 per cent at the same time the world economy is forecast to grow at around 3.9 per cent in the coming year.

“This matters to New Zealanders. Every lost 1 per cent of GDP means $800 million less revenue for government,” Adams said.?End quote.

But its all OK becuase Jacinda is back, with her baby. Did I mention the baby? Oh yes, and the baby.?Quote:

Ardern was expected to make a significant announcement at her post-cabinet press conference on Monday. It’s understood the trade-related announcement would be a signal to business about the Government’s seriousness in addressing confidence issues.

And she also hinted at further moves designed to bring business around to the Government’s way of thinking.

“What I intend to do is, within a month at least, bring together some of the work we’ve been doing in earnest around working together with the business community, to make sure that we are?tackling?some of the challenges that we’re facing collectively,” Ardern said.? ?End quote.

What did she even say just there? I certainly have no idea. It is all just platitudes and slogans. Bringing together some work they’ve been doing around working together? What??Quote:

“But what I’m really proud of is that we know and recognise some of the challenges that businesses are saying to us they have. Finding and attracting skilled labour, making sure that we grow our exports, diversifying our economy beyond housing and dairy – those are challenges we’re tackling head on.”??End quote.

What a ditz. This is what she took six weeks off for? This rubbish? She’s proud of recognising some of the challenges? What a fool.?Quote:

Ardern conceded there was big change ahead, but the economy was in a good position.

“We have incredibly low levels of unemployment relative to the OECD in particular. We have good solid growth forecast for the future. We have a surplus and, relative to other countries, our debt’s in pretty good shape too,” she said.

“When you tackle challenges that creates a level of uncertainty. Because you’re creating change. We are modernising our economy, but we need to bring everyone with us.

“Within the month,?I’m committed to bringing those strands together and doing a significant speech on the economy and we’re very much focused on addressing some of those concerns I’ve heard. But I feel absolutely confident we’re tackling this head on and we can bring business with us.”? End quote.

Oh great, she’s going to do a speech, then go to the United Nations on a royal tour. Whoopy!

Our prime minister is so conceited and as shallow as a bird bath.