The latest broken promise

Photoshopped image credit: Pixy

One of the things we were promised by this government was an adherence to the fiscal responsibility rules, meaning that government spending would remain within certain parameters, to allow for reducing debt and paying for existing services. Socialist governments are famous for spending money like there is no tomorrow; after all, it is other people’s money. This government promised to be different. By promising to adhere to the rules around fiscal responsibility, they essentially claimed that they would be as responsible with taxpayers’ money as was the previous government.

Well, guess what? 18 months in, that promise just went out the window, along with just about everything else they ever promised. This government really is a joke. quote.

The Government this morning announced that it will shift its debt target from a single figure to a percentage range.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson explained the Government is looking at a range of around 15 to 25 per cent of the GDP.

“Essentially, our current 20 per cent target falls in the middle of the new range that will exist from 2021/22 onwards,” Robertson said in a speech this morning to the Craigs Investment Partners investor conference.

end quote.

Don’t you just love the way this government treats its voters like idiots? So let us just stop and think for a minute as to exactly why they might want to move from a specific target to a ‘range’. Then let’s be honest. They are not doing this because they want to reduce debt, are they? No. They want to increase debt by an extra 5%. And don’t forget – this is after their little ‘off balance sheet’ trick with debt for Kiwibuild that they pulled last year. quote.

This would give the Government wriggle room to spend more – potentially up to $15 billion – based on the additional 5 per cent of GDP available to them.

Alternatively, it could opt to spend a little less and aim to further pay down debt. end quote.

Take it from me. They are not doing this so that they can pay down debt. If that was their aim and it was actually possible, we would know about it, as they would be shouting from the rooftops about how prudent they are. quote.

National Party finance spokesperson Amy Adams said the move was an admission of defeat on fiscal responsibility.

“This is a blunt admission the Government can’t manage the books properly, it is not wriggle-room. This makes the fiscal hole look like a puddle,” she said.

“This decision will mean billions of dollars more debt because the Government can’t manage the books properly and wants to spend up on big wasteful promises in election year.” end quote.

Yes, it will. It wants to bribe the voters. Remember Helen Clark’s interest free student loans bribe in 2005? We are probably looking at a repeat of something like that. With a slowing economy though, that is the last thing they should be doing. quote.

But Robertson said the move to a range reflected the fact that circumstances could change over time and did not necessarily mean moving to the outer limit.

“A range gives governments more capacity to take well-considered actions appropriate to the nation’s circumstances,” he said.

“It establishes boundaries within which debt is kept to sensible and sustainable levels and where fiscal choices are driven by impact and value,” Robertson said.

A newspaper. end quote.

Yes Grant. Of course, you are managing the economy brilliantly. Oops. I just had to duck out of the way of a flying pig.