Just left the tiniest of rants on this post at The Standard and wanted to save it for posterity.
As I say in it, I do appreciate that saving is a thing Kiwis are bad at, and god knows as a smug white university-educated Auckland-born woman who’s managed to buy her first home before the age of 30, I do have occasional authoritarian twinges where my brain about how Some People Just Won’t Take Care Of Themselves.*
I then stomp on those twinges with big hobnailed boots because that way lies voting for ACT.
Anyway, it goes thusly:
I get that people need to save. I get that Kiwis are pretty bad at this.
But some angry little part of me really, really resents fuckin’ baby boomers who got free varsity education, or didn’t need a varsity education to get a good career, who got cheap houses at low interest rates, who could raise a family on a single income and then decided investment property was the way to go after other/overlapping members of their generation fucked everyone’s faith in other investments, and thus in a multitude of ways made it so fucking hard for people my age to save and buy a house and service a mortgage, now want to say “Naughty children, you have to save for your retirement instead of paying down your mortgage / paying off the debt you accrued because your parents raised you in a value-free consumerist society!”
It’s full of generalisations and based on a solid foundation of “it’s not faaaaaaaair”, but you know? It’s another reason I (despite actually being quite chuffed Labour has
bitten gently gummed the bullet on the retirement age, though Idiot/Savant provides more than sufficient cynicism to balance that out) just can’t get behind Labour this election.
I hereby full acknowledge that I do expect too much in my dreams of a party which addresses things like private debt and lack of savings by actually challenging the basis of our self-obsessed consumer culture. But a girl’s got to dream.
*It gets especially bad when viewing those sorted.org.nz television ads with the woman saying “It doesn’t seem like real money, you know?” WHAT DO YOU THINK IT IS, WOMAN aaaaargh *stomp stomp stomp*