For four years at least Bill English has been promising to get the govt’s budget back into the black. However our debt has grown as each successive budget has failed to produce a surplus, and in this time I would say our interest on debt in real terms has cost the NZ economy around $30 billion.
In his pre-budget speech on Wednesday, English still stuck to the weak “we can’t cut spending because it will hurt people” line and said even though he expected tax receipts to fall by another $4.5 billion due to deflation and low milk prices, he would not be cutting spending. He talks just like Helen Clark or any other socialist-
“If this last year falls slightly short of surplus, and we’ve got smaller surpluses in the next year or two, we’re not going to let that change our plans to get on with decisions that we think are going to result in a stronger economy and a better community.”
The interesting thing about National’s claims to be good economic managers is that this will be the seventh budget in a row with a deficit, and about the fourth that was “unexpected”.
Sending the clear signal that they’re hopeless at predicting future trends, and isn’t that what good economic management is all about?