“the Budget will forecast strong wage growth and strong employment growth over the next couple of years, well outstripping inflation.” [Emphasis mine.]
He says “predictions” forecast “positive growth.” Yes he does.
And it is on that basis that his government plans to use this week’s Budget to set “a credible path back to surplus.” A “forecast.” Some “predictions.” By the same folk with failed crystal balls who didn’t see the global financial crisis coming, who said bailouts and deposit insurance would work, who every year since 2008 have been saying that recovery is just around the corner, and who this year have been talking up a worldwide recovery that still refuses to happen.
In other words, it plans to hack a path back to surplus based on wishful thinking about the future, some money saved by some magical Welfare for Working Families changes that will (by some magic) benefit most and hurt some not a lot, and by a magical public service initiative that will involve telling the public service in a very loud voice to spend a lot less money.*
Clearly, a lot rests on that wishful thinking. And the loud voice.
Here’s a cartoon from 1933** featuring the then Prime Minister and Finance Minister. Perhaps someone should pin it up on this Prime Minister’s wall.
* Thanks to Lyndon Hood for the quips. He does good quip.
** Cartoon from the 1935 ‘Farming First’ magazine shows then NZ Prime Minister Forbes and his Finance Minister Gordon Coates.
UPDATE [10:17am]: Slightly edited, and links added.