web analytics

Bill’s Magic Numbers

Written By: - Date published: 8:12 am, June 12th, 2011 - 16 comments
Categories: bill english, debt / deficit - Tags:

Bill (and John and the entire National caucus) have been telling us that we are required to borrow $380 million each and every week, so that we’re scared into accepting cuts cuts cuts to services in their budget.  Apparently we aren’t required to at all.

In fact they’ve been borrowing about $100 million extra each week – $5 billion for the year – because now’s a good time to borrow.  Which it may be, but it also helps Bill look good.

Right now, when they’re borrowing $380 million instead of $280 million, that extra $100 million of foreign loans is pushing our exchange rate up, causing harm to our businesses – who are, coincidentally, shedding jobs left, right and centre.

But come July and the new financial year, Bill has $5 billion in the bank.  His austerity budget hits as well, but it makes nothing like the difference that bringing forward borrowing does.  He can magically only borrow $100 million each week – because he’s already got the cash in hand – and claim to have done a sterling job at reducing government borrowing in the lead up to the election.

Without the additional borrowing, there’s a lot less pressure on the exchange rate, which should hopefully come down.  That, combined with a brief fillip from the Rugby World Cup should mean there isn’t the constant flow of job loss stories come election time – Bill’s ‘fixed’ the economy.

English has form on dodgy statistics – he seems to spend more time working out getting the numbers to look good that actually getting a plan together for the economy.  He came up with Key’s figures of incomes having risen 10% under National’s watch, but only 3% under Labour’s… as long as you looked at after-tax figures rather than real incomes; only included employed people, so when low-wage people lose their jobs by the tens of thousands wages ‘rise’; included Labour’s tax-cuts before the 2008 election as National’s doing; discluded any overtime; and worked on the average instead of the median, so that when bosses got 14% pay rises and workers less than 2% the number gets skewed.

No simple looking at median incomes for Bill, that’d get him the wrong result… (in fact incomes have fallen under National)

I look forward to the results of Labour’s cost of living survey, to see how many people feel better off with National’s “Brighter Future”.

16 comments on “Bill’s Magic Numbers ”

  1. jackal 1

    It’s an old Mafia con to get the mark (New Zealand) into debt. Particularly if the mark has something you want, in this case our SOEs. The problem is that National is taking a huge gamble with our money, which is dependent on factors out of our control. If there is another financial crisis, National would have sunk New Zealand into a huge hole that will take centuries to dig ourselves out of.

  2. ianupnorth 2

    So nearly $90 per week for every man woman and child – good work Bill, I am sure at this rate you’ll get it to a nice round $100 by the end of the year; far sooner if the Nats get back in and those that can depart these shores.

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    This is the type of stuff that needs to be shouted from the roof tops. It proves, quite clearly, that NAct are mismanaging our economy. I’m pretty sure you’ll find that the extra interest payments that they’re paying will cost more than what they think they’re saving.

    And, at the end of the day, a government never needs to borrow.

  4. RedLogix 4

    I linked to Brent Edwards RNZ weekly “Focus on Politics” piece late on late on Friday night, but it bears repeating:

    NZ deserves better than budget lies

    [audio src="http://podcast.radionz.co.nz/fop/fop-20110610-1836-focus_on_politics_for_10_june_2011-00.ogg" /]

    Covers this issue nicely. Cunliffe performs well.

  5. Colonial Viper 5

    Nothing is below Bill English and his NACT mates. Thank goodness the media finally figured it out and manned up.

  6. Lanthanide 6

    I really have to wonder who the “incomes have risen under National” line is supposed to fool?

    I guess all those un-thinking idiots on >$80k who themselves got a nice pay rise, listen to the stat and go “yeah, that’s seems about right”. There might also be some useful idiots in the $30-80k range that think similarly. Meanwhile everyone else will just hear this number and say “well I’m not better off” and wonder what he’s talking about. Seems like it can only breed distrust and discontent amongst the masses, to me.

    • Afewknowthetruth 6.1

      ‘incomes have risen under National’

      They have.

      It’s just that the cost of living has risen much faster.

      Politics is all about what is NOT articulated.

      All politicans and budding politicians steer well clear of anything connected with reality -like peak oil, fiat currency collapse, environmental collapse etc.

      • bbfloyd 6.1.1

        “incomes have risen under national”… tell that to everyone i know who works.. be prepared to be ridiculed.

  7. seeker 7

    Bill should hang his head in shame at conning an entire country.

    If he and John were in my class at school I would say that if Bill had not been so easily led by John, who is has an natural ability to gain peoples trust and then manipulate them, he would probably not have behaved so badly. Bill wants to behave honourably ,but he gets into bad company like the Nat Gang and down he goes
    .
    John will make a good money trader for they have no need of intelligent, long term vision or strategies to improve life, just tactics to make more money for themselves. And I believe, from a video I saw on the subject, that money traders get told by the companies they work for to gain the client’s trust and then exploit them. John will be excellent at this.

    He is always positive and cheerful, when he is carrying out an older and more powerful child’s bidding so they will like him more , give him their sweets and help him rise through the ranks of the gang.

    This ability will stand him in good stead if he were to become PM for he will want the power but will have no real idea what to do with it as usual, but if told what to do by the Act gang and later by Phil O’Reilly from the Bus, Group, he will carry out their agenda and get their wishes granted easily by doing what he does best- spin to gain trust.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      …that money traders get told by the companies they work for to gain the client’s trust and then exploit them.

      It’s one of the “rules” in How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie. In fact it’s a large part of the The Customer is always right mantra.

  8. MrSmith 8

    I find it hard to believe that Billy can borrow money on the presumption that it will be more expensive later in the year, is treasury giving him this advice?, if so it’s not worth the paper it’s printed on.
     
    How is he allowed to play the markets with our money, interests rates could go down later in the year for all we know.
     
    Home loan rate in the UK is around 0.5% I think.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      And the US Fed is lending the big banks newly printed money at between 0.0% and 0.5% interest rate.

      Its a rort.

      Countries get squeezed while Key’s investment banking mates get the best deals.

  9. Jenny 9


    All this spiralling debt has fuelled the neoliberal version of economic growth, of which asset price appreciation has been a fundamental driver. This asset price appreciation allowed individuals like John Key along with other financiers like him to amass huge personal fortunes.

    But at some point the reality that the debt can’t be repaid strikes home. The bailouts of banks, the US effectively printing money, is only delaying a collapse of the global economy like nothing seen before. We need to understand and prepare for history changing events.

    Chris Martenson explains the connection between economic debt and resource depletion

    Death by Debt – Chris Martenson Friday, 10 June 2011

    One of the conclusions that I try to coax, lead, and/or nudge people towards is acceptance of the fact that the economy can’t be fixed. By this I mean that the old regime of general economic stability and rising standards of living fueled by excessive credit are a thing of the past. At least they are for the debt-encrusted developed nations over the short haul — and, over the long haul, across the entire soon-to-be energy-starved globe.

    Chris Martenson

    To expand on David Lange’s famous comparison of financiers to reef fish – Our government’s borrowing and increasing debt is not original and is just blindly tailing along with all the other international reef fish in which Key and his mates are but a small minnow in a swarming mass all driven by personal greed, all mindlessly following each other down the giant maw of an approaching whale shark.

    Pertinent to our government’s borrowing of $380 million a week, on the promise/hope of an eventual upturn. Chris Martenson writes:

    If everybody owes everybody else, then kicking the can down the road only works if there’s more wealth, more growth, and sufficient economic activity down that road to service the past debts. If any one participant drops the baton in the debt relay race, the absurdity of the situation becomes unavoidable and the cause is lost.
    When we hold this view, it is abundantly clear that adding more debt along the way only increases the burdens and is therefore ultimately counterproductive, although it does grant the gift of additional time to avoid facing the truth.

    Ominously Martenson writes:

    …..there are no historical examples of any country ever digging itself out from so deep a hole, and yet we find that the entire developed world has bravely pushed itself deep into unknown territory, seemingly without any serious discussions about whether or not this made sense.

    • David 9.1

      Nice post Jenny: I am thinking the ultimate longer term effects of overleveraging (and yes its ideological framing) have not even begun to dawn on us yet.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Tokelau Language Week reminds us to stay united and strong
    Staying strong in the face of challenges and being true to our heritage and languages are key to preserving our cultural identity and wellbeing, is the focus of the 2020 Tokelau Language Week. Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio, says this year’s theme, ‘Apoapo tau foe, i nā tāfea ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ announces a third P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    The Government has deployed a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea, announced Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “New Zealand has long supported ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Pacific trade and development agreement a reality
    Pacific regional trade and development agreement PACER Plus will enter into force in 60 days now that the required eight countries have ratified it. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the announcement that the Cook Islands is the eighth nation to ratify this landmark agreement. “The agreement represents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Securing a pipeline of teachers
    The Government is changing its approach to teacher recruitment as COVID-19 travel restrictions continue, by boosting a range of initiatives to get more Kiwis into teaching. “When we came into Government, we were faced with a teacher supply crisis,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “Over the past three years, we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exceptions for a small number of international students with visas
    The Government has established a new category that will allow 250 international PhD and postgraduate students to enter New Zealand and continue their studies, in the latest set of border exceptions. “The health, safety and wellbeing of people in New Zealand remains the Government’s top priority. Tight border restrictions remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • First COVID-19 vaccine purchase agreement signed
    The Government has signed an agreement to purchase 1.5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 750,000 people – from Pfizer and BioNTech, subject to the vaccine successfully completing all clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, say Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods and Health Minister Chris Hipkins. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • International statement – End-to-end encryption and public safety
    We, the undersigned, support strong encryption, which plays a crucial role in protecting personal data, privacy, intellectual property, trade secrets and cyber security.  It also serves a vital purpose in repressive states to protect journalists, human rights defenders and other vulnerable people, as stated in the 2017 resolution of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ministry of Defence Biodefence Assessment released
    The Ministry of Defence has today released a Defence Assessment examining Defence’s role across the spectrum of biological hazards and threats facing New Zealand. Biodefence: Preparing for a New Era of Biological Hazards and Threats looks at how the NZDF supports other agencies’ biodefence activities, and considers the context of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020
    New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020 Hon David Parker’s response following Thomas Piketty and Esther Duflo. Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, wherever in the world you might be. I first acknowledge the excellent thought provoking speeches of Thomas Piketty and Esther ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Kaipara Moana restoration takes next step
    A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed today at Waihāua Marae between the Crown, local iwi and councils to protect, restore and enhance the mauri of Kaipara Moana in Northland. Environment Minister David Parker signed the document on behalf of the Crown along with representatives from Ngā Maunga Whakahī, Ngāti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand and Uruguay unite on reducing livestock production emissions
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Uruguayan Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries Carlos María Uriarte have welcomed the launch of a three-year project that will underpin sustainable livestock production in Uruguay, Argentina, and Costa Rica.  The project called ‘Innovation for pasture management’ is led by Uruguay’s National Institute of Agricultural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 3100 jobs created through marae upgrades
    Hundreds of marae throughout the country will be upgraded through investments from the Provincial Growth Fund’s refocused post COVID-19 funding to create jobs and put money into the pockets of local tradespeople and businesses, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced. “A total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health volunteers recognised in annual awards
    Health Minister Chris Hipkins has announced 9 teams and 14 individuals are the recipients of this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards.  “The health volunteer awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other New Zealanders,” Mr Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community COVID-19 Fund supports Pacific recovery
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says a total of 264 groups and individuals have successfully applied for the Pacific Aotearoa Community COVID-19 Recovery Fund, that will support Pacific communities drive their own COVID-19 recovery strategies, initiatives, and actions. “I am keen to see this Fund support Pacific ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community benefits from Māori apprenticeships
    Up to 50 Māori apprentices in Wellington will receive paid training to build houses for their local communities, thanks to a $2.75 million investment from the Māori Trades and Training Fund, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Ngāti Toa Rangatira Incorporated to provide its Ngā Kaimahi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Training fund supports Māori jobseekers
    Rapidly growing sectors will benefit from a $990,000 Māori Trades and Training Fund investment which will see Wellington jobseekers supported into work, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Sapphire Consultants Ltd. to help up to 45 Māori jobseekers into paid training initiatives over two years through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Ruakura Inland Port development vital infrastructure for Waikato
    The Government is investing $40 million to develop an inland port at Ruakura which will become a freight super-hub and a future business, research and residential development for the Waikato, Urban Development and Transport Minister Phil Twyford, and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The funding has been has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Appointments made to Defence Expert Review Group
    Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today the establishment of an Expert Review Group to review a number of aspects of the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) structure, information management and record-keeping processes.  The Expert Review Group’s work arises out of the first recommendation from the Report of the Government’s Inquiry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • No active community cases of COVID-19
    There are no active community cases of COVID-19 remaining in the country after the last people from the recent outbreak have recovered from the virus, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “This is a big milestone. New Zealanders have once again through their collective actions squashed the virus. The systems ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Clean energy upgrade for more public buildings
    More public buildings will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. Minister Shaw announced that Lincoln and Auckland universities will receive support through the Clean-Powered Public Service Fund to replace fossil fuel boilers. Southern, Taranaki, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago