Roughan on Super Fund


If your income is down in the recession and you are taking on debt to maintain the family’s living standard, would you borrow a bit more to put into a superannuation fund?

Nor would I. Nor would John Key, Bill English, Phil Goff, Jim Anderton or Peter Dunne, I suspect.


Goff, smelling fear, declared Labour opposed to suspension and called on the Government to make its position clear. Anderton called it “raiding the piggy bank”. Dunne, minister of tax collecting, declared it “a very bad idea”.

All of them know it would be sensible.

Yes I refuse to believe Phil Goff is that stupid. He knows it is the sensible thing to do, and why Cullen designed the scheme to allow a contributions suspension. But he is getting a bit desperate with his ratings, so punted for stupidity, even though he knows better.

Deficit adds to the debt loaded on future taxpayers, unless inflation erodes its value in the meantime. Either way, its a thankless legacy.

To increase public debt by a billion dollars and put that money in a superannuation fund risks presenting our tax-paying children with costs that could exceed the fund’s earnings on that sum.

And to date the Fund has generated less money, than if it had been in risk free Government bonds.

Roughan also has a go at , saying it is unfair to cut taxes in a deficit. He forgets (or omits) that you can also cut spending to reduce the deficit, and longer term a low tax eonomy will have better economic growth than a higher tax one.

The problem is not the rate of tax. It is that NZ is not producing enough income to generate that tax. And you won’t generate more income by increasing tax rates. You’ll destroy it.

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