Bob Christie [if he gets your surname].
Spell it backwards and it's still correct.Bob that is.
Children are a big big experience and responsibility.Congratulations. Good luck.
p.s. I admire your work.
They also loathe being the opposition.
Sure. Which is why I felt a pretty surprising surge of sympathy (and respect) when Helen Clark conceded the election and resigned in the same breath. It was just sad seeing Muldoon and Lange on the backbenches, and respect for Helen deciding she wasn't going to go out like that.
I should say, that baby is DUE on Wednesday, but when s/he decides to turn up is anyone's guess. And so I do have a pass to the Music Awards, and I might pop in for a couple of drinks towards the end there, but with Backbenches Auckland special on Wednesday night (all welcome), and a day-trip to New Plymouth to cover the campaign for Q+A, I might be pushing my luck somewhat, baby or no.
Can I just point out that some time in the next three decades your partner will take revenge on you for this "less than 100% attention to me and my baby".
I do have problems with this policy that I’ve laid out at some length elsewhere. Is the only way to sustainably fund super screwing over the young, Maori and Pasifika (who statistically have lower life expectancies than Pakeha) and the working poor by moving the goal posts further away?
I don't get this argument. For starters, people with significantly lower life expectancies are already getting screwed over by the current system. The only way not to screw them over is to have no centrally funded super system, but to have your own personal account (a la kiwisaver). That's sure as hell not going to work out very well for Maori and Pasifika who are going to retire on average with a hell of a lot less.
The problem there is life expectancy, not when we start funding superannuation.
I don't get the argument that this change will cause the elderly to be poor, maybe I missed something in the announcement? If you are able to work and have work, you get nothing. But you're earning, so you are only worse off in missing out of two years of super.
If you can't work, or don't have work, Labour made it very clear that you would be getting a generous benefit - I presume something equivalent to the super. So the people that can't work through their body being buggered or other reasons are no worse off in 20 years than they are now.
The only people that are worse off are those people that can work until they are 67, and surely if there's savings to be made, those are exactly the people that should be missing out because they're the best off?
Aren’t student living allowances means tested? And who knew it’s NOT about the economy?
Means tested on your parents income to boot.
I come at this from a diametrically opposed place to you, Ben: I have almost no desire to continue working into my seventies. Fuck that. I’ll be old. I could be doing something fun instead.
Which is damn great with me. But if you were to set a personal retirement age of 60, should we start paying you then? No - everyone gets the same age, and it might move at some stage. If anyone chooses to retire early for whatever reason, that's a personal financial decision that they should prepare for.
Congrats on the baby Damian. Welcome to the rest of your life.
But if you were to set a personal retirement age of 60, should we start paying you then?
I get that. It's not that I disagree. I think I'm just a bit peeved by these ideas floating around the retirement discussion, both here and elsewhere, that if you're a sprightly sort of 65, tally ho old bean, why not keep on trucking doing your terribly enjoyable and fulfilling job? As I said, uh, diplomatically on Twitter, "The answer to the question 'why shouldn't people keep working into their 70s?' is BECAUSE WORKING FUCKING SUCKS AND WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE."
(Here, where I am not limited to 140 characters, I can note that of course not ALL jobs suck, but most of them obviously do, or they wouldn't be jobs, and I am sure that the lovely person I have hired to come and clean my bathrooms while I am Hugely Pregnant would greet the well-meaning suggestion that she should continue to work for some unspecified longer amount of time with a giant bird-flip, and I wouldn't blame her one bit.)
BECAUSE WORKING FUCKING SUCKS AND WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE
I’m so pleased that I’ve been working on my drunkorexia all week that I will only need one vodka to become blissfully ignorant of this.
“The answer to the question ‘why shouldn’t people keep working into their 70s?’ is BECAUSE WORKING FUCKING SUCKS AND WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE.”
Well that's certainly true to an extent.
But there is a long term problem if we keep helping people live longer through various means, but keep them working (and therefore paying taxes) for the same amount of time (probably in reality shorter as people are at school and more likely to do tertiary education and therefore many won't pay taxes until they're in their early to mid-20s).
Maybe it's counteracted by the change with more 2 income families, working mothers and fathers, etc, but I doubt it.
I also don't think it's just a babyboomer issue. Of our welfare state with unemployed and sickness beneficiaries and DPB recipients getting so much flack, superannuation is more than those three all put together, and then some more. And that's before the baby boomer retirement bubble hits. It's a tremendous amount of money and a small change like this actually saves a lot. As long as no one is actually pushed into poverty or other serious problems - which by my reading of the policy it prevented - seems like a good idea.
I also hate the idea that there's this third rail in politics which is death if you touch it. Labour has gone and touched two apparently - CGT and raising retirement age - and maybe it won't help them, but it certainly hasn't seemed to be death, and now people are saying that because it's now policy they'll stick with it so it'll eventually happen when they win.
Seems like we need to touch more third rails if that's the case.
(Here, where I am not limited to 140 characters, I can note that of course not ALL jobs suck, but most of them obviously do, or they wouldn’t be jobs, and I am sure that the lovely person I have hired to come and clean my bathrooms while I am Hugely Pregnant would greet the well-meaning suggestion that she should continue to work for some unspecified longer amount of time with a giant bird-flip, and I wouldn’t blame her one bit.)
Absolutely. But there's a counterpoint, which is that yes, she might work for two years longer if able, but she'll pay less taxes or get more government spending on health or education or something else because the government for her whole life. So it's not all bad.
Re: Baby boomers’ supposedly free education.
I can rant for a long time about the changes to the education system from the mid-80s onwards. But this myth of a golden age before those changes should not be swallowed whole.
An anecdote (I hope she won’t mind): When my mother announced she was going to go to university, her father refused to pay for it. ‘What do you want to go to university for? Get a job as a secretary until you get married.’
Mum did go to university, at the same time as several well-known politicians of the same generation. Because she couldn’t pay for it herself (this ‘free’ education), she had to bond herself to someone who could.
When she finished her degree and her department asked her to become an assistant lecturer, she could not take them up on the offer, despite how much she’d’ve liked to, because she had to go work for the people who’d paid for her to go in the first place.
But then, she was still pretty lucky: her mother had a scholarship to go to secondary school – secondary school! – but couldn’t take it up because she had to work instead. So Mum actually being able to get an education at all was quite a big deal. Something she had to fight tooth and nail for. And boy does she regret what might have been!
Yeah, they had it so easy. (And I'm not so sure this is the right place for this.)
Sorry. I've decided my personal marketing slogan should be 'Danielle: Harshing Your Mellow Since 1974'.
So it’s not all bad.
Also noted in policy, if she cannot work for reasons of health or work related issues, she will be paid from 65 so it is trying to consider and factor in the physical type jobs that domestic certainly is.
Personally my age means this would affect me and I don't mind because the country is in debt and at 67 I would have done 2 more years with kiwisaver so I feel I can contribute to do my bit. I just got my whopping increased Rates bill, and although I expected it, it was not nice, but I want rail in Auckland so will do my bit for that also, even though I'll blame Rodney Hide :)
However it affects people, some of us can handle the difference and those that can't will be looked after. At least it will still be here. Just as all other benefits should be too. If we stay on the same track, and sell our Assets, then where are we gonna get our benefits from? China? World Bank? Maybe Key could tell us where we get 380 mil from each week now.Doubt it.
Re: Baby boomers’ supposedly free education.
I don't know how old your mother is, but baby boomer is a specific term for the generation born between 1946 and 1961 (give or take a year at the end).
I was born in 1947 and I can also confirm that 'varsity education was emphatically NOT free where I went to Canterbury in 1968/9-
give or take a year at the end
Doesn't it go up to 1965? Or do those people get to be 'Generation Jones'?