Thursday, 24 November 2005

Cullen: 'Whoops!'

DOMINION: Millions at stake in loan loophole

Economics genius Michael Cullen says he will be talking to Inland Revenue about 'closing the student loan loophole' exposed by one Thomas Banfield, who reclaimed his voluntary student loan repayments and whacked it in the bank to earn interest -- a smart thing to do when your loan is interest-free and the bank is giving you back eight per cent on your deposit.

'Closing the loophole,' Cullen calls it. But Cullen's 'loophole' is not the ability to reclaim voluntary repayments; the 'loophole' is the whole no-interest, money-for-nothing, student-loan election-bribe fiasco. Labour said during the election that 'there was unlikely to be a big rise in the number of students taking out loans, even if they were interest-free.' As anyone with a brain knew at the time, they were wrong. It's looking like another $1 billion error.

(Supplementary question: If you publicly predict an outcome that you know by your own judgement is the opposite of what will occur, is this a lie? Or just an election promise.)

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