Hold the front page: Winston Peters and Jacinda Ardern are getting on together. Both appear determined not to open our borders.

Now that Europe is having fun in the summer holiday sun, and we are officially invited, and Ardern, true to reputation, says it's too dangerous. You get the sense she longs for the good old/bad old days where we were all locked down, doing as we were told, and "be kind" was all she had to say each day.

The fresh, brash new world of economic carnage and job loss is causing her some real consternation. The border is a mess, more personal protective equipment (PPE) is needed, and they're running on borrowed money. It's all a bit angsty.


Coming to the rescue is Winston 'give me a bubble now' Peters, who says who cares what the EU thinks, we are not being flooded with foreigners.

I think he's missing the point. The question we need to be asking is, what's the plan?

Articulate the plan. If the borders are to remain closed, closed until when exactly? Ardern says the transtasman bubble is up to the Australians. What's that exactly mean? What are we looking for, or waiting for?

When Peters said the Cook Islands bubble is closer than you think, is it not? I thought it would be underway by now. They have no Covid, we have next to no Covid, so what's the problem?

The power and importance of the question is because if you are keeping the borders closed, we need to know until when.

Is it until there is no more Covid in the world? Is it until there is a vaccine? And if that's the case, what the replaces the gargantuan hole in the economy while we wait for that to happen?

It's even more important given eradication isn't happening, and vaccine may or may not. So for how long do we wait until it becomes apparent plan 'A' isn't happening and therefore we need plan 'B'? And what is plan B?

None of these questions, and certainly none of the answers, have been forthcoming. Tourism, planes, holiday makers and hotels are worth $12-13 billion to this economy.


While that is no longer happening, what's the replacement? What's the strategy? And surely, tell me it's more than more printed money.

Welfare is a patch up, it's a band aid, and it's temporary.

Are we now saying it's permanent? Is that as good as it gets? Are we reliant on local tourism and the Jobseeker welfare scheme?

Peters and Ardern appear good at telling us what isn't happening.
What we need desperately from them is, what is happening.