Now ACT want a referendum

What is it with referendums? ?Colin Craig wants to run the country by them, John Key wants to change the flag, and now ACT want a non-binding waste of taxpayers’ money for one as well.

The ACT party is calling for a referendum on whether the retirement age should be increased.

Leader David Seymour told the party’s annual conference it wasn’t tenable to keep paying out super payments from the age of 65.

ACT received less than 1% of the party vote in last year’s election.

ACT Leader David Seymour closed his speech to the party’s annual conference by challenging political leaders to support a referendum process to determine the future of New Zealand’s superannuation system.

“If the public can vote on the New Zealand flag, a matter that is largely symbolic, why not follow the same process for another intractable problem, one that politicians have been dodging for decades.

It is actually an occasion where a referendum may make sense. ?No political party is likely to push the retirement age up, in spite of it being sensible to do so as we become healthier and live longer. ?Labour tried to run on such a policy last time and was caned for it. ?A referendum would take the decision away from any political party and it can then be implemented as the ‘people’s will’.

If they have such a will, of course. ?

“Almost everybody realises that change must be made eventually. We are living longer, and the baby boom generation is starting to hit retirement age. On current settings the cost of NZ Super will rise from over 4% of GDP now to close to 8% by 2060, with most of the increase happening in the two decades to 2030.

“Policy must adapt to people’s increasing life expectancy. But there are other issues to consider and options to weigh, like provisions for those unable to work past 65, whether there should be some element of means testing, indexation issues, the relationship with KiwiSaver arrangements, the possibility of flexible starting dates for taking up superannuation, and the arrangements for new migrants and citizens returning after decades away from the country.

Mr Seymour called for a cooperative approach on the issue, directly challenging each political party to support this process for resolving the political impasse of NZ Superannuation.

Oh well. ?That’s?that dead in the water then.

But seriously. ?Instead of a referendum on a flag, we should be talking about the retirement age, and a referendum will give all the parties a free pass by not being associated with “pushing” for an increase.


– One News