The new boy on the block: The Opportunities Party (T.O.P.)

Businessman Gareth Morgan has introduced a new party to the New Zealand political system. It is called The Opportunities Party, and its philosophy appears to be

But wait. What is The Opportunities Party and what do they stand for? According to Mr Morgan, the Opportunities Party is intended to give people a fair go, and enable the younger generation to have the same opportunities that the older generation(s)have had.

Before I draw any conclusions about The Opportunities Party, I want to see what the costings of their policies will look like. Mr Morgan has said that his tax regime will not charge a single dollar more. Mr Morgan might regret that promise when his other policies such as health, education, social welfare and so forth come out as all will need significant Government funding. As Mr Morgan is not a politician, it could be potentially said that he is just using the opportunity to impart what he believes is the best party and why people should vote for it.

The environmental policy of T.O.P. appears to be a three way cross between Labour, the Greens and New Zealand First. It puts fresh water, climate change, the Resource Management Act and the impact of tourism near the top of its priority list. Mr Morgan’s war on cats might be aimed at protecting the native flora and fauna, but it needs to be a war on possums, with Government funding to develop safer and less problematic poisons that break down more readily in the environment.

With regards to immigration though, I see good intentions with not so good ideas about how to make immigration work for New Zealand. Without going into specifics I think I begin to see loop holes in Mr Morgan’s ideas about making immigration sustainable. Those loop holes are a combination of badly written policy and half hearted attempts at correction, on the basis that “She’ll be right”, or “this will be just fine – we don’t need to do any more”.

Mr Morgan’s party is promising policy on climate change, health, education and our constitutional arrangements. Will he take a step to the left now that he is in office, in return for time being granted to further develop the policy platform, find good candidates to impart the policies and get on with some serious fundraising. So close to the election, Mr Morgan and his party have a lot of ground to cover quickly if they wish to catch up with Mr Trump and the Trumpolution.

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