Who is next on the Government’s list for performance pay? Under the guise of reform they seem to want the whole of the public service placed on this insidious platform. We all know there is no theory or logic behind their moves, because this government is incapable of thinking in terms of theory. The only driving factor for their attempts to bring in performance pay is that of cost cutting.
I am not advocating New Zealand spending way beyond its capacity to pay, but I am questioning this ‘one cut suits all’ approach. That they are now targeting the police puzzles me. We want good, well-balanced people joining the police force. They attract enough criticism now with bringing this latest attempt at ‘reform.’ Who is going to join the police if there is the prospect of lower pay, because in the long run that is what will happen, just as it will in teaching or nursing, social work and God knows who else. Why would this government go down this road if there wasn’t some sort of ‘savings’ to be made?
We have seen NATIONAL Governments make cuts in the past and then see the need to recruit skills that are needed because we have lost ground during the cutting phase. Of course the bills for ‘exerts and consultants rose so some of the savings were wiped by that alone.
I hear some of you saying---‘but where’s the money going to come from for your lofty ideals?’ Fair comment. I do live in the real world.
My belief is that of we want world class education, health and welfare systems, and then we have to pay the taxes that pay for them. When governments change, they play with the tax system and make cuts or increase expenditure accordingly and the cycle continues. This cycle has been with us for many years. When any government is brave enough to make real changes that would have allowed NZ to have a huge buffer against economic downturns, the next government cuts the initiative.
I am of course speaking about the Superannuation scheme that Labour brought in back in the 70’s. Muldoon came in chopped it. If we had continued with that scheme, NZ would have been in a similar situation as Australia. We would have a massive amount of money in the bank. Now we have National doing the same as it meddles with Kiwi Saver and a Prime Minister who says that he will not tolerate movement in that area .
This short term thinking based around election cycles has all but killed NZ’s capacity to make real changes. It is time that politicians of all hues put aside their own selfish agendas and had a uniform approach to matters of taxations, retirement and savings schemes so NZ benefits--- not the politicians and their wish to remain at the ‘trough.’
Let an informed public make some of these decisions through ‘binding referendums.’ So instead of whipping the diminishing public service sector, take a look at the bigger picture!