The New Zealand economic reforms of the 1980s and 1990s were largely a failure. This can be seen from the large negative divergence post 1984 in New Zealand’s real output per capita in comparison to Australia, our usual benchmark. New Zealand’s comparative position vis-Ã -vis unemployment also worsened. Poverty and social inequality increased.
Australia undertook various reforms, however, these were moderate and measured in comparison to the evisceration that took place in New Zealand. The author of many of the New Zealand reforms was Roger Douglas, now a prominent ACT party MP.
Recently Don Brash’s taskforce spent $400,000 of taxpayers’ money recommending that New Zealand’s path to economic salvation lay in embracing the failed policies of Rogernomics. This is the same Don Brash who expressed to the ACT party’s annual conference the view that many voters are “venal and ignorant“.
Huljich is the country’s largest KiwiSaver provider. Don Brash is the chairman of the Huljich KiwiSaver Scheme. Brash claims that the scheme has a “commitment to socially responsible investment”, it offers “open and honest communication”, and that it has a “track record that speaks for itself”.
In 2009 Huljich was investigated for the illegal door to door marketing of its schemes. We now have the revelation that Huljich returns were manipulated. Gareth Morgan goes so far as to say that Peter Huljich, the Managing Director/Chief Investment Officer told “lies”, is “not fit to make financial offers to the public” and that the Huljich schemes should be wound up.
Don Brash is reported as saying that the non reporting is “regrettable” after previously failing to recall aspects of the transaction. It is noted that Brash’s high standing and standards are used to promote Huljich:
As well as his financial and economic wisdom, Don brings a reputation for financial probity, prudence and commitment to Huljich Wealth Management.
Given Brash’s failure to resign from Huljich, his muted public response to the serious allegations made against Huljich, and his intemperate outbursts against his fellow citizens, why does anyone still listen to him?