The Super Issue.
When should we be able to retire?
There was a poll last week which asked if now was the right time for a tax cut. Which is quite an odd thing to ask really, don’t you think?
We’ve got to pay back the money used to keep paying people and stop businesses going under during the pandemic. Our country faces a very large bill to clean up after all the weather events we’ve had. There is massive underinvestment in infrastructure, and our social services in education and health are crying out for more money.
Who in their right mind would think now was the right time for tax cuts?
It is a silly irresponsible question. But it isn’t really asking if now is a good time, or not. All it’s really asking is would you like to have some more money in your pocket? To which, funnily enough, people say yes. It is only human nature to want more money to spend, without thinking about what that money would otherwise have been used for.
For example if the question was would you be prepared to work two years longer for a few extra bucks in your pocket now? You might get a different answer.
Look, I don’t know what sort of tax cuts people are imagining. But for many they’d be a lot less than the $51,000 National and ACT are planning to take from every man, woman, and child in this country, under a certain age, by raising the eligibility for superannuation by two years.
Ros: I want the entitlement age to stay at 65 as I think NZ has it right. At 65 when I retired from a high stress job - I couldn't have carried on working. There are far too many others in the same position, let alone those whose bodies have given way because of their type of physical work.
At their party congress this weekend Labour committed to keeping the Super age at 65. Whereas National and ACT are committed to raising it to 67.
National have said their change will be staggered over a 15-20 year period, ACT’s policy is to make the changes immediately. So the actual timeframe for a change would be contingent on coalition negotiations between the two. It would ultimately depend on just how much Christopher Luxon wants to be Prime Minister.
It is worth remembering just how many people would be impacted by this change. Under Seymour’s policies it would be everybody not yet retired, for National that would be everyone under the age of 50.
We’re talking about kids playing games at school, preschoolers eating play doh, and babies gurgling in their prams. Even the unborn in the womb, that group National claim to care so much about.
Of course with a lower life expectancy Māori are disadvantaged yet again. Although judging by their approach on other issues I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that for National and ACT, impact on Māori is not a major consideration.
Janis: I am against the age level for Super being raised. It is true that Māori, and pasifika are disadvantaged because statistics show they die younger than other ethnic groups. I have seen that first hand. My pasifika husband died at 59 yrs old. The men in his close group of friends all died before 65.