Stealing from the future

My parents generation came through the Depression with the very firm belief that saving for a rainy day was better than borrowing to enjoy the sun today.

My generation got a reminder of the good sense of that when the ag-sag of the 1980s hit.

We didn’t like it at the time but the tough prescription of Roger Douglas’s Budgets were a very necessary correction of the policies of successive governments from the early 1970s. They spent more than they earned, taking the country into debt which was in effect stealing from future generations.

Reducing the burden of the state and freeing the economy to allow better growth were worthy aims which were subverted by Labour from 1999. Michael Cullen reduced public debt and achieved Budget surpluses but he also increased government spending, gave welfare to people in want rather than need and increased taxes.

The worst damage was done by the extravagant promises which Helen Clark used to win the 2008 election. The productive sector was in recession but it was disguised by high government spending and consumer spending and escalating property prices fuelled by borrowing.

We were already in recession when the global financial crisis hit. Recovery has been patchy at best and the economic impact of the Christchurch earthquake has been the last straw.

The government has recognised the seriousness of the situation and is making it clear there will be no pre-election lolly scramble. There won’t be any increased spending at all – if there is more in one area it will have to come from less in another.

The left either can’t or won’t see the sense in this which gives voters a very real choice in the election.

Labour and its potential allies  want to steal more from the future. National knows the lesson the Depression taught my parents still hold true.

2 Responses to Stealing from the future

  1. Fredinthegrass says:

    Wise words, Hp.
    We can only hope the voting public can see through the “sham” Labour is proposing. It is not rocket science to see the mess our finances are in, but it will take a courageous government to do what is necessary.

  2. gravedodger says:

    Ele, you are in a purple patch this morning. Two very appropriate posts on the options that face us as a nation.

    George Santayana said “those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” and that philosophically inspired statement has been paraphrased throughout history ever since.
    “Socialism will only last until there are no people left to fund it” is slowly dawning on thinking minds when in fact Dame Margaret espoused it some 40 years ago, “I am from the government and I am here to help”, Ronald Regan’s 9 most terrifying words in the english language. These thought provoking themes are indicative of the threats to western civilisation that are so widely ignored by so many in government today.

    The civilisation of today has been constructed by many ordinary minds and a few exceptional ones that ignored the strictures of past thinking and dogma and developed new methods and ideas that although mindful of history and aware of the lessons, traveled to new horizons for the betterment of all. The American constitution is one of the more dramatic manifestations. Hitler, Lenin, Mao all managed to motivate their people with dictatorship coupled with rhetoric, coercion, murder, mob hysteria and propaganda, all employed in various combinations and timings and apart from Hitler were overcome by “education” and “knowledge” when the ruled masses came to a collective point of awareness that revealed the truth to them and subsequently remembered the lessons of history that condemned their completely false utopia to the scrapheap.
    The human spirit can flourish to amazing heights of achievement but only if it is free to learn, innovate, act, assimilate , communicate, co-operate with others and enjoy the rewards that will eventuate. When the minority, and that is all a government is, imposes, controls, legislates, or otherwise attempts to manipulate outcomes for political reasons then the “law of unintended consequences” will immediately reduce the output of the human spirit and we will all be the poorer.

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