Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Politics and the Internet... Sort of...

My vote this year will be decided solely on what the new government can do for me. Selfish I know, but I'm tired of thinking about the greater good. The idea of paying $30,000 of interest on my student loan so that everyone can get superannuation is ridiculous to me - is that money realistically going to be there in 50 years when it's time for me to retire?
Labour's "No Interest on Student Loans" policy sounded good, but I heard a few things that put me off: it might only be on loans drawn down after April next year, for example. I wanted to check everything out before I decided, I want to make my vote count... towards my future wealth.
I went to the Labour Party website www.labour.org.nz, to look at the Policy Cards and get some clarification, but the website was as vague as the information I had already recieved! The website has separate sections for women, education, every left-wing thing you could think of, but none of these provided me with answers. There's not even an FAQ section. So I asked one of those "Ask Me" enrollment people around Uni - "Who will be elligible for no interest: new loans, or existing loans, or both?" He told me: "Keep watching the news and they should clarify it for you." So much for making my vote count - I can't even figure out what it's counting for. I guess this is one of those occasions where you realise that the wealth of information available online is mostly useless. I think I'll still vote Labour though, just in case :)


At 6:35 AM, Blogger Luke said...

Yes - why, in 2005, aren't the party websites better. The tax calculator on the Labour Party site doesn't even work for me in any number of browsers: very ominous! Then the Nats tax calculator seems to say tell you you'll get "NONE" from a Labour government no matter what income you enter into it: very dishonest! I like to think, though, that none of the parties could bribe me to 'vote with my wallet'. But I'm not being pious here. As you rightly say, it's a bit easier to think about the 'public good' when you're in a reasonably comfortable income bracket and not saddled with large student debts! I do agree with Laila Harre, though. She pointed out that her and her husband have a combined income that puts them in the top bracket. She enjoys two holidays a year and very comfortable lifestyle. Don Brash wants to give her another $10k back in tax cuts! Her argument is that it's obscene to think that people in her income bracket are the most deserving of the biggest tax cuts. Hard to argue with that.

At 8:10 AM, Blogger Kevin said...

Interestingly, from my perspective it's very unsurprising that none of the party websites give clear information.

The internet is ubiquitous enough to be aligned with Media as a whole now, and no party uses Media to release policy when they can release Propaganda.

Interestingly, I checked out the National website about 6 months ago and found their Education Policy. It ends at highschool. There IS no tertiary level National policy, period.

Intriguing, no?

At 8:38 AM, Blogger Luke said...

Sure, your're right, but when something parades as a number-crunching "calculator", claiming to give you hard figures, it's totally unacceptable for it to either not work or tell blatant lies!

At 9:47 AM, Blogger Kevin said...

True, that is one of the more lamentably obvious examples of someone trying to get away with murder in this campaign.


I wonder if this is something the media has been made aware of yet. That could be inherently amusing...


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