Queenstown, not surprisingly, is in a world of trouble, and the Government seemingly doesn't want to know.
One of the Government's early Covid lines was, "we can't save every job".
And I am not sure many would have expected them to, but what I would've thought most would've wanted is a fair attempt at it … if the argument to save those jobs was decent.
My rule of thumb is that if your business has its doors shut for reasons beyond your control, you deserve help.
Just last week the Government, under urgency, changed the law around help for lockdowns of seven days or more if your income had had a 30 per cent hit.
That sort of thinking and action makes sense.
It's not your fault you are in level 3 and can't serve customers.
Why then is Queenstown, and the tourism industry more generally, any different?
The tourism door is the border and the border is closed.
We all know the numbers around the value of the international tourist - the gap between them and us tiki-touring around during the school holidays is about $6 billion.
What realistically are we expecting these people, this industry, to do with a shortfall like that?
How is it fair that the cafe closed for a week in Auckland can apply for and get support, and yet the tourism industry and those flow-on businesses have had such a limited amount of assistance -- and now it appears the tap is being turned off for good.
The original logic was it was these very businesses that still needed to be around for the so-called bounce back.
When the borders open we need a tourism industry ready to receive the visitor. What's happened to that thinking?
Tourism in general has been treated hopelessly. Surely the irony cannot be lost when you look at the Attorney General's inquiry into the STAPP programme.
The programme that seems so gerrymandered and shambolic no one knew who qualified, far less those who actually did and yet didn't apply. Some got millions, some got nothing, so bad was it that MBIE at one point suggested the whole thing get wound up.
For a country that only does a couple of really big things, ie dairy and tourism, it seems an odd old business that we would treat one of them with such scant regard.
What most New Zealanders sadly have forgotten as we celebrate the so-called "bounce back", all that spending on cars and renovations, is that it's made artificially more impressive by the debt we are racking up at record levels. We owe $100b and counting. It's a massive Band Aid, once filled by Chinese, American and Australian tourists.
The Australians get it. The Morrison Government as we speak is considering specific cash help to those in the industry once their job keeper scheme winds up. Yet again common sense drives their decision-making.
The Jobseeker there and the wage subsidy here worked reasonably well. They retained jobs, they bought time, they allowed businesses to adjust, reset, and come out the other side.
Obviously the complexity of this is the difference between a direct tourist job and an indirect one. If you're a helicopter pilot in Queenstown, or a bungy jump operator, the link between you and an American with dollars is fairly easily established. But what if you're a retailer in Rotorua or Taupō or Arrowtown? How much of it was tourism, and how does a government measure it, and what is a sensible level of help?
The cold hard reality is that with upheaval comes change. Our economy has and is changing. Big cities are struggling, provincial centres are booming, people are at home over Zoom, office space isn't what it was.
But what we know for sure is our borders will open eventually, and tourism will be a major part of who we are once again, so telling businesses to talk to their bank the way the Government is, is not helpful. Cutting them adrift isn't helpful.
For a Government with money for public holidays, sick leave, recent announcements for arts, sports, Rainbow relief, you'd hope our former biggest foreign income earner might get a better deal than it currently is.