web analytics

Hickey on how Key’s failing the kids

Written By: - Date published: 11:20 am, October 30th, 2011 - 15 comments
Categories: debt / deficit, john key, superannuation - Tags:

To: Sir John Key (former PM of New Zealand)
Address: Somewhere warm and comfortable
Date: August 6, 2026
From: New Zealanders born from 2002 to 2011, living in New Zealand, Australia, UK, US and Asia.
Subject: Happy 65th birthday

Dear Sir John,

We congratulate you on your 65th birthday.

We hope you are enjoying your retirement after your 24 years of service as an MP and your 12 years as Prime Minister.

We understand you are due to receive the New Zealand Superannuation from the taxpayers which, when combined with your wife Bronagh’s pension, still works out at 66 per cent of the average wage.

We also understand you will also be receiving a pension on top of that from the government from your years of service as an MP and Prime Minister. And we understand you have retained your wealth from your years as a successful foreign exchange trader and investment banker, including the tax-free capital gains made on the various properties you owned.

We had thought of buying you a present to go with your pension, the NZ Super and your own private savings, but we’re a bit short of cash at the moment.

In fact, we’re not that thrilled with some of the decisions you made 15 years ago, which mean we’re not feeling that flush right now.

We are the generation born between 2002, when you became an MP, and 2011, when you won your second of four terms as Prime Minister.

We wonder why you insisted on spending our inheritance to ensure you were voted back in.

We’re now either about to graduate, are unemployed or have just started work. Our taxes are about to go up to pay the interest costs on the debt you incurred and to pay for the healthcare and pension costs of your generation.

We understand your government borrowed $20 billion alone in the 2010/11 year. We remember the appalling earthquake, but most of this was to pay for middle-class welfare measures that Labour and National used during the 2000s to get themselves elected.

The tax cuts you delivered to your fellow wealthy New Zealanders had to be paid for with borrowings of $2.8 billion in the 2010/11 year alone. What happened to that money?

All we see now are excruciatingly high house prices in Auckland in particular.

We can’t afford to even think about buying a house here.

Those people of your generation that owned property when we started being born in 2002 became fabulously wealthy and paid no tax on those capital gains.

You and your generation then decided to keep the retirement age at 65 and the payment for a couple at 66 per cent of the average wage, even though the Retirement Commission, Treasury and a host of other experts told you that you could not afford to keep doing it, particularly now.

We understand you even said you would resign if you ever increased the retirement age or changed the 66 per cent payout.

We had a look through Hansard and found a quote from October 4, 2011, where you said you weren’t concerned about economic outlook beyond 2025. Why? We care. Why didn’t you?

Kind regards,

Bernard.

———————————————-
A chilling vision of the future. The way to avoid it seems to be to make sure that Key doesn’t get four terms, but only the one.

15 comments on “Hickey on how Key’s failing the kids ”

  1. Zaphod Beeblebrox 1

    Those tax cuts amount to generational theft. Give tax cuts to high earners now and don’t pay into the super fund. Whats more important ? Higher house prices in 2011 or not having the ratings agencies slashing our credit rating because we are too hedonistic to save for the future?

    Hickey is right on to it.

  2. Lanthanide 2

    I can’t really take anything Hickey says seriously because he’s essentially spouting double-talk and I’ve never seen him actually acknowledge or address it.

    One of his favourite topics is young New Zealanders moving off to Australia after they’ve graduated here because there are no jobs and the jobs in Oz are better paid. Then, in the next breath, he is calling on the government to get rid of interest free student loans because it’s unaffordable middle-class welfare and driving up the deficit.

    Well which is it? You take away interest-free student loans and you’re giving even more incentive for these graduates to move to Australia, where they will *need* to get a job with a higher salary in order to pay back the loan in any realistic time frame.

    • Nick C 2.1

      I’ve never understood this as an arguement for interest free loans. Reduced government expenditure as a result of abolishing IFSL would mean lower taxes and lower interest rates on other borrowing such as mortgages. You would pay the interest on the loan whether you live in Aussie or NZ, but you would only get the benefit of lower taxes if you live in NZ. So there is just as much or more incentive to stay in NZ.

      I also just dont buy the idea that people are mainly motivated to seek higher incomes overseas because they have debts. From my experience the people who move overseas for work arent the ones in financial hardship due to loans. They are people who are already quite comfortable, but got job offers with vastly higher salaries which they couldnt really refuse.

  3. Phaedrus 3

    So correct. Hickey’s credibility is high, especially as a reformed monetarist. Great to see this in the NZ Herald as well. The smile and wave facade is cracking, the mask is slipping and the real Key is being revealed.

  4. gingercrush 4

    Hickey looks seriously sick.

  5. gingercrush 5

    Its the same thing he does every few months. Just a rant that gets slightly adjusted whenever someone announces something. Of course prior to 2008 he was calling for a low flat rate. Since he went the other way that part has been removed. But the gist of it remains the same.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Not a ‘rant’ – a narrative of where we are going wrong and why as a nation.

      We ignore it at our peril.

      If it seems to you that Hickey is being a broken record, fair enough. Its because NZ’s underlying economic themes which need to be changed have not been changed.

      And it seems to me that the 3000 New Zealanders leaving for Australia every month (including his family members) agrees.

      • Zaphod Beeblebrox 5.1.1

        So do Fitch’s and Standard and Poors- unlike the NZ media they can see what is going on.

      • gingercrush 5.1.2

        So lets remove working for families then and get interest back on student loans and implement a land tax on everything and reduce government spending to a pittance of what it is now. For that is Hickey’s wishlist.

        • McFlock 5.1.2.1

          His solution might not be something I agree with (although I’m not sure your summary does it justice), but he certainly identifies the problem. A bit like Marx, in that respect.

    • bbfloyd 5.2

      not a very convincing effort to shoot the messenger really…. insulting and patronising pseudo analysis, while occasionally momentarily amusing, is still pointless…. there’s more than a hint of “rant” about your comment itself…. is there a personal issue you aren’t sharing with us?

  6. Nick C 6

    Absolutely raise the age to 67. Annoyed by Key being hamstrung by this stupid promise, and I suspect that once he retires there will be a consensus that we should. To be fair to him I think he was motivated to do it in 08 to a) Try get rid of Winston b) As a responce to Clarks hysterical cries that Key would cut and sell everything, its entirely reasonable for him to think she would have started talking about superannuation to scare seniors when people realised that he wasn’t going to sell every state asset the minute he got elected.

    The other thing we should do is means test. I used to find it odd that Labour opposed means testing: Surely it allows more money to be saved which could be spent helping their poorest constituents. Then I realised that Labour dont care about their poorest constituents as much as they care about power.

    • dazed & confused 6.1

      Means testing? How would that work?

      Perhaps the supposed “well-off” at a certain cut off point have to sell their house and pay their rent and live off the invested income perhaps. Those who have the family home in an ideal trust world would of course be exempt. A targeted Super would not work, as it would just be avoided through trusts.

      In theory I like the United Party’s policy framework that appears to give flexibility, letting those people who work and stay active for longer opt for a larger amount later and a lesser amount for those who wish to take it up earlier…I’d need to really study the figures, but it could help address certain demographics and professions where premature aging is a characteristic.

      • Nick C 6.1.1

        You would have a dual asset and income test, with a sliding scale as to how much benefit is recieved. Only those who were very wealthy would recieve nothing, most people who go into retirement with good savings built up would still be recieving money.

        I disagree that you could use trusts to avoid the laws. Many aspects of the have to deal with the fact that people keep a substantial number of their assets in trust and have developed to do so, bankrupcy laws being an example.

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
    5 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
    1 week 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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