National’s bungling and Key’s duplicity have been all over the news for weeks – a “Never ending stream of blunders and stumbles”. I think it’s now clear that they are unfit for office anywhere but Planet Key. Which is unfortunate, because here on Planet Earth we are probably (because Peter Dunne will never grow a spine) stuck with them for the next two years.
On Planet Earth, New Zealand, things are not going so well for the 99%:
Inflation outpaces incomes
Family incomes have increased by less than the rate of inflation and Opposition parties are renewing calls for an increase in the minimum wage. Statistics NZ’s latest income survey shows median weekly incomes rose by just $6 in the year to June compared with the previous 12 months.
Labour’s finance spokesman, David Parker, says it’s the lowest annual increase since 1999. “With weekly incomes rising more slowly than inflation, Kiwi families have less money at the end of the week than they did this time last year,” he said on Thursday. “At a time when jobs are hard to come by and losses are announced every week, many families are in real trouble because they can’t earn enough.”
The Greens say the figures mean that since 2008 household weekly incomes have risen 3.7 percent while the cost of living has increased 10.1 percent.
We’re often reminded that global recovery will be a long time coming:
No recovery until 2018, IMF warns
Fund’s chief economist Olivier Blanchard says global economy will take a decade to recover from the financial crisis
The International Monetary Fund’s chief economist has warned that the global economy will take a decade to recover from the financial crisis as the latest snapshot of the UK economy suggested that growth in the third quarter will be at best anaemic.
Olivier Blanchard said he feared the eurozone crisis, debt problems in Japan and the US, and a slowdown in China meant that the world economy would not be in good shape until at least 2018.
It’s entirely possible that there will be no “recovery” at all. It’s entirely possible that global failure of neoliberal economics combined with the growing impact of peak oil and climate change means that the game has changed forever. Planet Earth needs radical new ideas and urgent action.
New Zealand needs to be leading the way (or at least taking part!). But we’re stuck. Stuck with a dysfunctional government. Stuck with a government that doesn’t understand the problems, let alone have any solutions to offer. Stuck with two more wasted years before anything can change. Two years is a long time on Planet Earth.