Monday, March 19, 2007



Doing something about the super fund

Last month we learned that the New Zealand Superannuation Fund was investing our money in nuclear weapons, cluster bombs, and genocide. Now the Greens have started a petition to end this practice, and oblige the fund to invest in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. You can download a copy here [PDF]. While Parliament has a poor record on petitions (something I may be posting about in the near future), there is a bill in the ballot to require this, and this petition would be a strong show of support for it to be adopted as formal government policy.

8 comments:

What a delicious irony. The Greens want to listen to public opinion on something as highly technical as the best investment practices, but don't want to listen to 80% of New Zealanders who say the anti-smacking Bill is bad law.

Posted by Insolent Prick : 3/19/2007 04:09:00 PM

It's a moral issue, not a technical issue.

Posted by Commie Mutant Traitor : 3/19/2007 04:23:00 PM

There's a world of difference between petitioning Parliament and petitioning for a CIR. One is an inherant function of parliament in which the outcome is solely up to the relevant select committee; the other is a legal process which may lead to a poll (though the results are not binding upon the government). Another difference is that you don't need to be enrolled or even eligible to vote to petition Parliament - anyone can do it, including corporate bodies (which really does suggest that someone should have sought the signaturs of children on the anti-smacking legislation...)

If you're curious, you can read about petitions to Parliament here, and CIR petitions here.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 3/19/2007 04:25:00 PM

If politics gets deeply involved in the Cullen fund it would be better to abandon the idea, because it will criple it's ability to make money. that would be a shame.

In reality if NZ buys shares in haliburton amongst other companies they don't need to feel much more responsible for Sudan's actions than they do every time they fill their car with petrol etc, maybe less so.

Posted by Anonymous : 3/19/2007 06:10:00 PM

Insolent prick, you're wrong if you're implying any kind of inconsistency in position. There is nothing technical about not wanting the savings pool invested in unethical activities. Writing a law to fix an existing legal loophole which allowed assault might well be considered quite technical.

The Greens don't decide policy on public opinion and never have. They are undoubtedly the best example of a party deciding policy opinions from a clear philosophical base. If you want to be more interesting, argue about these philosophies and the best implementation in law, rather than childishly looking for hypocrisy. If you don't have the faculties for that, post on kiwiblog.

Posted by Monkey : 3/19/2007 07:00:00 PM

Bullshit, Monkey. "Unethical investment" is simply a pinko term for companies that you don't like. It is totally arbitrary, and used for ideological purposes. You want fund managers--whose sole brief is to maximise the returns on investments for the benefit of all New Zealanders--to suddenly jump to the tune your particular prejudices about companies that are acting lawfully in the international marketplace.

Fund managers aren't politicians. They aren't trained to keep an ear to the ground and understand why every pinko dislikes a certain US company. What they are trained to do is analyse a company's commercial performance, and make judgements on whether to invest or not.

I/S: You're deliberately fudging. You want non-politician fund managers to listen to your political views about the highly technical nature of investment performance--which, by the way, you don't appear to have any particular expertise in--yet you are quite happy for politicians to ignore the will of the vast majority of New Zealanders about how they discipline their own children. That is hypocrisy.

Posted by Insolent Prick : 3/20/2007 08:09:00 AM

If you were to be fair you should give people the option. Ethical investment or maximum return. Of course payments out of the scheme should also take into account the performance of what type of fund you chose.

I don't want my payments invested based on the political flavour of the government of the day. I don't care if its invested in companies with a nuclear subsidiary or armament manufactures I want max return.

Make empty political gestures with your money not mine.

Sb

Posted by Sb : 3/20/2007 11:35:00 AM

I/S: You're deliberately fudging. You want non-politician fund managers to listen to your political views about the highly technical nature of investment performance--which, by the way, you don't appear to have any particular expertise in--yet you are quite happy for politicians to ignore the will of the vast majority of New Zealanders about how they discipline their own children. That is hypocrisy.

Furthurmore you and the Green Party think people should eat more fruit and vegetables but also oppose selling poisoned milk to school children! Oh the short-sighted hypocrisy of the left!

Posted by Danyl : 3/20/2007 11:38:00 AM