Bill’s Super changes “courageous” but Winston will save him from himself

Changing the retirement age has been a political hot potato…

Not for nothing had John ‘finger on the pulse’ Key declared change would come over his dead political body, said the pundits. Labour dumped the policy after defeat in 2014 because it was too toxic, they all agreed.

On Radio Live, Mark Sainsbury ruefully reckoned politics has ruined any chance of a decent superannuation debate before one had even begun.

In the New Zealand Herald, political reporter Claire Trevett put it like this the morning before Bill English’s announcement:

“Memo to Prime Minister Bill English: When your campaign platform is one of certainty and stability, it doesn’t pay to torpedo it yourself by hurling in a great dollop of uncertainty.”

When the PM didn’t get her memo and announced the change anyway, she responded with another piece pointing out this was like feeding kryptonite to Winston Peters and strengthening his hand.

Wasn’t kryptonite Superman’s outer-space poison?

Soon after, the piece was amended online like so:

“English’s announcement was akin to feeding Popeye his spinach.”

Never wrong for long.

Luckily Winston will never allow this change through. ?It will be a bottom line for any coalition talks.

And frankly, Bill will love it that way. ?The whole thing was a stuff up from start to end. ?Now he can claim to have been the mature one, but in the interest of MMP-based unity, he’s had to shelve it for a term to appease other coalition partners.