Whaleoil transcript: Part two of four – Leighton Smith and Simon Bridges on education, the RMA and immigration

Leighton Smith

Newstalk ZB ? Part two

Starts at 5:16

Leighton

Education. Changes announced last?. By the way if you would like to have a short discussion with Simon Bridges, if you have a question that you would like to ask him, 0800 801080. We can get two or three calls in, you can ring right this very moment.

The announcement made at the end of last week for tomorrow?s school shake up.? Comment?

Simon

Pretty simple, what I worry about is that we move to more centralisation. That never goes well. I think the reality is, this should be about parents, ahh? we want to make sure it?s about locals, and I worry that what this is, is one big power grab? more centralisation. That?d be in theory ok if what we were getting out of that somehow was a universally stronger education system of excellence but that won?t be what we will get.

Leighton

Who was the best education minister of the last thirty years?

Simon

Hmmm? that?s a really interesting question. I think Lockwood Smith, arguably. I think he had a vision of what he was trying to do, he believed in excellence in learning. I mean, my view of this is this: you?ve got to have a system where it doesn?t matter whether someone goes to the ?worst? or the ?best? school. And I fear in NZ at the moment that we are getting away from that. Actually, at those so-called ?worst? schools they are just not going to get the learning they need to compete in the 21st century and the dream of someone growing up and being able to be a physician, a rocket scientist, you name it, I worry, if we keep going down the track, we are on? this government takes us? that will be a dream of the past.

Leighton

All right. I don?t mean to detract from Lockwood Smith but Merv Wellington for me. Back in the? back in the eighties. He had? he was pilloried? he was shredded? if it was today, you?d read the social media and you?d wonder what had happened to the world.

Simon

I?ll give you? I?ll give you an international one. Michael Gove in the United Kingdom. He effectively had the courage to take on the unions? umm? to push for real learning? for independent schools and some of the things that would deal with those at the bottom really getting ahead.

Leighton

All right. 21 to 11, Newstalk ZB we?ll take calls after the break. (Break)

0800 1080 questions for Simon Bridges. Steve, morning.

Steve

Good morning. Hey um? look um? Simon, you had nine years in power?

Simon

Yep.

Steve

To do something about the two main reasons? why there hasn?t been land supply in Auckland and we saw prices ratchet up. I?m in the building industry and I used to scream out at the tv for nine years saying why aren?t you guys doing something about the Resource Management Act and the Auckland City Council well before we got to this point, and now, you know, after the fact? you?re? you?re now talking about it?

Simon

Yep, yep.

Steve

So, so it?s all something new.

Simon

No, I agree, so here?s what we?ve got to do. Next year we have to show you the colour?

Steve

Why didn?t you do that before?

Simon

I?ll answer that. Next year we have to show you the colour of our money and slap an RMA bill on the table to get around your point. Um? we had one term where we had the numbers, our first term, we should have done it then, we didn?t. We did phase one, but it wasn?t enough. In our defence the second couple of terms we simply never had the numbers. And NZ First, for example, talked the game, said, oh they might look at it, they never would, they wouldn?t engage with us. Now ultimately, I?d make this point to you Steve, over what is it ? 30 years we?ve had the RMA, we?ve had tinkering, we?ve had adding to the patchwork quilt, that?s not good enough, we need to rip it up and start again with fundamentally a new bit of law. Mea culpa, I accept we didn?t do that in nine years.

Steve

Also, also Simon quickly – I think you need to come out, start afresh, say you guys stuffed up there was a housing crisis.? I?ve always been a National voter but it?s annoyed the hell out of me that English and Key never admitted it. Everyone else knows, the writing was on the wall, you got ten? you know?

Leighton

Make it short Steve.

Simon

I hear what you say. Look I?m not afraid to say we stuffed up when we did, all I would say to you, there?s a bunch of stuff that we did that actually this government is picking up, aah? we got to it too late.? I think in the end we had some good stuff.

Leighton

All right. There?s a lot of people who think that the immigration into this country has been outrageous and that?s the cause of much of our? much of our problems. You say?

Simon

I think it depends where you are. If you are in Auckland right now you?ve got infrastructure and housing issues, yeah, as a result of amongst other things immigration.? Go to the South Island though, go to Canterbury I would argue that they need another 100-150,000 people. Go to Timaru…

Leighton

You can?t make people move.? You can?t take people into the country and make them stay somewhere they don?t want to be.

Simon

I wonder about that. I wonder if actually for NZ a good policy wouldn?t be if it?s points or whatever it is are getting people to move where we want people to be. I personally think, say if you did that in Christchurch, they stayed there a couple of years, they would stay because it?s a great place to stay and raise a family.

Leighton

Do you know? jeez, according to the email I?m looking at, you ain?t seen nothing yet. Go to the new roading in Christchurch, there?s no business back there yet, well bugger all the business, and I can?t even see them going back there.

Simon

Well Christchurch is starting to see the city that it wanted, but I think ultimately? you know we don?t have a high housing crisis in NZ, maybe in parts of Auckland, absolutely, but go to Christchurch, they?ve got more than enough supply?.

Leighton

This? this is actually talking about bicycle lanes, there is no room for cars in the central city, you can?t park anywhere there without walking a bloody mile, all bike and bus lanes, cars are finished in Christchurch too.

Simon

I don?t disagree with that. But then I will tell you that right now in Christchurch the council has decided not to build car parks. Why are they doing that? It?s fundamentally simple ? social engineering. They want to see people onto their bike. I?m all for encouraging it, but come on, we do need car parks as well.

Leighton

They?re morons. Michael, good morning.

Michael

Yeah, hi Leighton and Simon, I just wanted to um? understand a little bit more from your perspective?

Recording ends. ?

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