Adolf over at No Minister has a very good, almost scholarly dissertation on the differences between National and Labour. Something for journalists to file away for reference in the coming months.
However, we think that this governments steely leadership is worthy of note as well.
Ministers like Judith Collins have managed to face down public service Humpreys who are well past their use by date. Its a tough thing to do - as our dad would say - they are cunninger than a shithouse rat.
Collins has shown clearly that while she knows front line police on the street do a great job, the strategic direction of the police force was lacking. The culture was shit. It was a boys club. She has appointed a tough bugger in Peter Marshall to set things right , he knows what she expects police to achieve and he can be sure in the knowledge that she will unfailingly back him to the hilt and give him all the support he needs when the chips are down.
Crusher Collins has shown she is not a Minister to be trifled with. It is apparent that she gave Broad and Pope a wee push out the door. She gave them enough time to gather their wits and exclaim it was all their idea when plainly it wasnt. The fact that her desire to see them gone was leaked, shows clearly the shake up of the police ivory tower was very popular with the rank and file.
We can never understand New Zealanders medias subtle condemnation of changes to the leadership of the public service with the advent of a new government. Firstly its the government perrogative to choose the CE's they want to work with. They need to know that the people they are working will support the policies they are trying to implement.
The public service is a slow acting dull beast, made fat and lazy from years of over indulgence. The smart and the passionate get mired in process designed to keep account of outputs not outcomes.
For New Zealand to get ahead of the game - that must change. Crusher , is thankfully leading the charge.