As rightly pointed out over at Kiwiblog, when you make something free you distort incentives around use of that good or service.
The previous Government introduced a Supergold card, offering concessions and discounts on various goods and services. In all their wisdom, they offer free off-peak travel on certain public transport. One such service was the Fullers Ferry to Waiheke Island.
It has now been reported that pensioners flocking to Waiheke Island have delivered more than $750,000 in Government subsidies to Auckland ferry operator Fullers in the first five months of free travel, with an average of 200 pensioners per day taking in the journey.
Who could possibly have foreseen that response?