Say anything stupid – just get on telly.

It’s blettingly obvious that the first rule of politics is get heard and get seen and it doesn’t really matter what you are saying – it won’t hurt if you throw in the old catch phrase ‘cost to tax payers’ etc.

National’s transport spokesperson Maurice Williamson was on the telly this morning ranting about how it will be the taxpayer who will be footing the bill for extra security at regional airports after the hijacking affair recently. A Somali woman tried to hijack a regional plane between Blenheim and Christchurch.

Most regional airports and some of our major ones rely on the public to not bring on weapons etc, as there aren’t the resources to provide the sort of screening that might have resulted in the woman being prevented from getting on the plane.

Today a Cabinet paper on regional airport security is apparently being presented to the government. It is possible that greater security at regional airports could ensue, although we just don’t know to what level and who will be funding it.

And that’s the crux of my issue here. Williamson and National don’t know a single thing about the details. They do not know what will be required of airports, who will provide it and who will be paying for it. But in their typical ‘we’re not paying for it mentality’, they are assuming that the taxpayer will be footing the bill as regional airports won’t be able to cover the extra costs. He looked most concerned for the long suffering tax payer. What really dissapoints me over this sort of thing is;

a) he is talking all speculative stuff, he doesn’t know any of the details,
b) that doesn’t prevent him from crying for the taxpayer on national TV
c) there was no mention of what National would do in the situation. Would they make the tax payer pay. I would find it almost unbelievable that the party that doesn’t want to pay for anything would cover these costs.

So the first rule of politics was gold for National first thing Monday morning. Get on telly, sound like you care about the poor taxpayer once again, and never let the public know what you would have done.

Volume over substance is Nationals stance, and as long as you are in the public eye that’s all that matter.

** Update **

See it works. Someone at the news website was watching the telly this morning too, and now this is serious news worthy of second place on the web site.

MP warns of cost of x-ray screening passengers
National’s transport spokesman is urging the Government not to spend too much money on heightened security for small planes flying to regional airports.

What a golden rule, say anything and the buggers will publish it.


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