Watching the Media party and Labour scoff rats over Kiwibank is hilarious


The Media party and opposition politicians really don’t know what to say about the government’s announcement yesterday that Kiwibank was selling down 45% of Kiwibank to the Super Fund and ACC.

The fact that it was Sir Michael Cullen announcing it meant that rat-swallowing was the order of the day.

You see the left-wing have been telling us for years that the reason Bill English was able to steer us through the global financial crisis was because of the brilliant state of the books that Michael Cullen left them in.

They can’t hardly start attacking this scion of the left and hero of Clarkism now can they?  

Barry Soper had to damn with faint praise:

The father of the Cullen fund, Michael, has for some time been the head of NZ Post, and therefore the bank’s chairman as well, an institution he’s clearly warmed to with all his personal money now being directed through it.

Cullen’s always been good at shifting money around without necessarily having to spend it, so what better way to finance the bank than through his fund buying a slice of it, along with the ACC investment fund. Together they’re worth $60 billion, so the $495 million they’ve earmarked to buy 45 per cent of Kiwibank is small change.

It may be something of a money go round, with the bank staying in the Government’s hands, but with the investment funds doing what they should be doing more of anyway, investing in a Kiwi company.

But who would have thought the fund Cullen founded for our retirement would have, at his behest, been buying into a billion dollar bank he didn’t want a bar of?

Jim Anderton can afford to have a wry smile on his face.

Kiwibank has not been sold. It remains in 100% government ownership and NZ Post has had a capital injection. It sounds good, but no where near as good as selling both organisations. Unfortunately, in the current political environment, that is impossible.

Meanwhile I’m going to enjoy watching the opposition and Media party tucking in to a big plate of BBQ rat.


– NZ Herald


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  • Seriously?

    Funny to watch the squirming.

    495 million out of a 60 billion fund is “small change”, but 26 million on a referendum out of a core Government revenue of some 75 billion per year is the end of the world as we know it.

    • Second time around

      .. and most of that $26 million went to NZ Post.

      • kayaker

        New Zealand Post is having a good year, every which way!

      • Bryan

        so do we need more flag type referendums to bring NZ post back to profitability, so lets have one on
        “when should Winston retire” or
        “which leader should Labour choose next”
        or “which leader in the Greens is the greatest waste of time and money.”
        That should lift their profit

  • JeffDaRef

    “Cullen’s always been good at shifting money”

    Yes – he did a great job of shifting our taxes into the pockets of Toll Holdings when he bought back Kiwirail…

    • biscuit barrel

      He must be Chairman of Xero too, because their accumulated losses are around the $100 mill mark.

  • Second time around

    Kiwibank needs more capital if it is going anywhere. One issue is that NZ Post is currently the guarantor, but if that role goes to the NZ Super Fund, the nation’s long term retirement savings could be put to risk bailing out bad business decisions of a government owned bank. An example would be where a Labour government strong armed Kiwibank into taking on dairy debt at interest rates below cost.

    • biscuit barrel

      Dairy debt is around the $30 bill level and banks are allready covering those farmers ‘underwater’, ie have to borrow more just to keep going.
      The ones Im worried about are sharemilkers as they didnt buy up expensive land, just financed the cows through the bank. ( and they dont get help via Fonterra for its shareholders)

      The dairying bailout will happen. And it will come before the next election in 18 months.

      Allready the banks are putting dairying partnerships of mostly townies into receivership, and any farmer who has a holiday home but wants more money to pay to run the farm will have it for sale.

  • Tim Brown

    The CEO of Kiwibank said some of the sales money would go to the Government as a special dividend. That would mean that some of the money would be converted from capital in the Super Fund and ACC into income for the government, thus reducing the deficit. Effectively a little bit of raiding the nest egg to fund today’s expenses. Not quite just a money go around for the government.

  • Nesher

    Actually I am with David Seymour on the KiwiBank “sell”. The Nationals is more and more leaning left. It is not a surprise that they are more and more often in agreement with leftie politicians and the Media Party.

    • woollyone

      I think we have blame MMP. National has to swallow a few dead rats to stay in the box seat. It is very much a case of slowly slowly catchee monkey. Small changes slowly so as not to frighten the horses.

  • venator

    Nice photo. It’s not often that Soper cooks for himself and his niece.

  • axeman

    Of course Seymour is right but this is as good as it gets. The shareholders have plenty to invest but not our of the Govt coffers.

  • wilson

    National should get cullen to announce eveything they do. Nothing from the left, after he said the spies should spy more. Now this. Key must sit there laughing to himself. Thinking this is to easy