Monday, April 16, 2012

Ruth Richardson Speaks to a Nation. A Nation is Confused.

A year ago God struck down Christchurch with an earthquake in retaliation for NZ clinging to social democratic values.

The worlds tectonic plates are sentient and possibly communists. Change is coming for the beautiful people, like Steve Jobs, though he is possibly not so beautiful now. iThings have transformed the very fabric of how we function. Politics, public policy and the public sector have been absent from this revolution except for all those revolutions that have been happening around the world, but that’s neither here nor there.

The relationship between the individual and the state has evolved fitfully and incrementally in developed nations and latterly more violently in nations where citizens struggle to overthrow despotism or escape the tyranny of the elites. Nations such as the United States, Greece and the United Kingdom.

On the upside, the i-era means the locus of power is with the individual. Never before have the iDesitute and iHomeless been more powerful.

iIndividuals are DYNAMIC, know no BOUNDRIES, with FORCES UNLEASHED.

On the downside, the bankruptcy of big state "solutions" has exposed economies and populations to wrenching change of business as usual. Big state “solutions” like bailing out all the finance companies with tax money so they have the opportunity to cause yet another global recession ten years down the line while CEO’s make millions in bonuses.

So against this backdrop here is my sketch of what the new institutional order might look like for politics, policy and the public sector over the next ten years.

There is a pervasive worry that the politicians are not up to it and I can confidentially suggest that this will be the case after people have read this; that much of political discourse has degenerated into a form of reality TV contest, but that may be my inner-Snookie speaking.

The democratically elected who are answerable to the public are no longer capable of fixing things. Instead of voting them out and putting in place those that can improve things we should instead hand over the power to the private sector, for they are like gods. Worship them, iMortals.

The Generation Z politicians, the so-called digital natives, will have chips in their brains that will enable them to instinctively understand the demand to constrain the reach of the state after hours and hours of playing SimCity and reducing taxes to 1%. The style will be one that celebrates diversity of the wealthy and the elite, honours personal opportunity and responsibility, and eschews the privileges of insiders, with outhouses to be installed in all corporate owned housing sectors. The focus will be on outcomes and a championship of the individual choices that can better lift performance and so promote better outcomes. If you choose to be poor the outcome will be starvation which will mean less welfare and more money for shoes for the rich.

The sacred cow of the state as the primary economic driver and social crutch will be well and truly slaughtered and the new generation of politicians will live to tell the tale. Hindus are therefore not invited to this new Utopia but the bbq promises to be amazing. Ladies, bring a plate.

Policy will be radical, we’ll keep hold of a pretence of regulations within the financial world and money will rain down on the rich like slaughtered holy cow blood.

As the dawn breaks and we realise that we’ve spent all our asset sales money that was keeping us temporarily afloat, we will embrace the noble and achievable mission to finding a mate for our money.

All this is known as drunk typing.

The big policy reform is de-friending the state for being a loser.

This friendless loser has traditionally been evil enough to monopolise health, education and social welfare, areas which are disgustingly enough not generating profits for iIndividuals.

These "Dirty Commie Berlin Walls" that stop the making of profits out of education and health will slowly but surely fall with personal technology aiding the exercise of personal power and control as I use my iPhone to buy stocks in Auckland Girls Grammar and asset strip Starship Hospital.

The consequences of social welfare without personal responsibility has been cruelly exposed time and again with people daring to be poor and kept alive by the noble elite.

Burke's "little platoons" have much to commend them and efforts to pass the baton from the state to the non-state sector will surely intensify as more Corporations step in to sponsor sports events at military bases.
The problem is that the private sector has innovated apace, but the public sector has not. The private sector both innovated a global financial breakdown and innovated away to subsequently tap into public sector funds.

In New Zealand we still insist on providing public education and health and doing so to some people who might otherwise not be able to afford this. Thankfully we have seen sense and have begun massive public sector cuts, but we need to define what the state should be doing, which is quickly disappearing, never to be seen again.

Governments must be determined to make a fist to take the public sector by the tail and to really swing it about until it hits the private sector ceiling and is finally put out of its misery. The mandarins are the unelected government with real staying power and have every incentive to entrench a discredited status quo unless reformed root and branch. I must remember to eat lunch and tidy up the backyard.

The evidence is overwhelming that a large state makes for low growth. The evidence is my say so, and truly what more is needed.

The DYNAMISM waiting to be UNLEASHED over the next ten years drives my optimism that the economic and social ambitions that nations hold dear can be achieved. That ambition is that every rich person will be able to buy the luxury car fleet of their dreams.

However, if you don’t let us dismantle the public sector to make way for the private the hand break will be applied and the country will surely crash into the “Berlin Wall” while the social powder keg explodes killing us all.
Steve Jobs gave us phones and music players and different types of computers. We must build on this success by selling to Apple and becoming iNew Zealand.

* iRuth Richardson is a former Finance Minister. This article was the result of a drug binge drinking session while reading Ayn Rand and listening to Pink Floyd.

Original article can be found here:

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