OnPoint by Keith Ng

Read Post

OnPoint: Budget 2010: What’d you expect?

275 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 6 7 8 9 10 11 Newer→ Last

  • recordari,

    From the opposite point of view, here's the Wall Street Journal Index of Economic Freedom. We do well on that list also.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Apparently it's only 174,000 new jobs according to Treasury - even my hearing is optimistic, see.

    I wonder if they factored in the jobs that will continue to be be lost as public sector budgets stay below the rate of inflation and cost increases? Maybe the private sector will hire those people for all that policy devleopment and research and so on that they do? Or perhaps we will have a real brain drain, not just plumbers moving to the gold coast.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • BlairMacca,

    He's got something there. When the only country in the OECD with a lower tax burden than NZ is Mexico, and still we're being told that we must cut taxes, it points to some interesting absence of lateral thinking on the part of our politicians. If taxes are what holds an economy back, we should be going absolutely gang-busters. Instead we're trailing the OECD on most of their other measures of economic performance. Maybe Key has realised that the only OECD ranking at which we have any shot of being number one is the lowest tax burden, and he's acting accordingly?

    Exactly. I mean are people in Australia going to think, ohhh I can come back to New Zealand because I get a small tax cut, and foresake the extra BEFORE tax pay, better working conditions, superannuation, penal rates etc etc etc????

    Wellington • Since Apr 2007 • 208 posts Report Reply

  • ScottY,

    I do have to agree with my fellow plutocrats that eating babies is overrated.

    The children of the undeserving poor are so malnourished these days that they are either quite flavourless, or having been fed or a steady diet of junk food since birth, tend to leave a slightly chemical aftertaste, and give one gas.

    The answer, dear boy, is to farm them industrially, thus ensuring they receive all the right nutrients. Of course, try getting a resource consent for that sort of activity. Bloody nimbies will stop you in your tracks. PC madness.

    West • Since Feb 2009 • 794 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Clarke,

    It's ok. Now we can grow them in a test tube, and select for yummy-ness. Hopefully some of that science and technology money our government has been shouting about will go towards this sort of research.

    -36.76, 174.61 or thereab… • Since Nov 2006 • 164 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I reckon Danyl is dead right about the government's Budget media management and the poor response from the left.

    * Whatever you think of the budget itself we have to admit that it was a masterpiece of media strategy: they got the issue of tax-cuts for the rich out well in advance, set expectations around it, took the critique from the opposition and then reversed all the expectations. The rich still get massive, MASSIVE tax cuts but the story is around the larger than expected changes to lower and middle income brackets – because those are news, the changes to the top end aren’t.

    * Labour still haven’t figured this out – they’ll still explaining to middle income earners that they get nothing when those people can just look at the charts in the newspapers and see that they do actually get quite a lot. Sure, they lose some of it through GST, inflation etc – but if you’re explaining you’ve lost. I’ve been saying for years that National’s media strategy is in a whole other class to Labour’s and this is yet another example of that disparity between the parties.

    * Part of the strategy was a disinformation campaign: English has been solemnly telling us for months that tax changes had to be ‘revenue neutral’. The package he released today is not even remotely revenue neutral. He’s borrowing around half a billion dollars a year (at least) to pay for all of this. Naturally all the the pundits that criticised Labour’s plans to borrow for more government spending as ‘irresponsible’ are falling over themselves to praise English’s ‘solid’, ‘sensible’, etc borrowing for tax cuts. Jackasses.

    Journos are also letting Key and others give examples of $50k salaries as if that is "average" - when it is well above what most New Zealanders bring in, sadly.

    And no sign of any way to change that other than the same old magical thinking about "incentives" and "encouragement" that we saw the last time English et al had their hands on the tiller. If we can't make that approach work with one of the lowest personal tax rates and costs of doing business in the world, isn't it about time to acknowledge that those are not the things that are holding us back as a nation?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Journos are also letting Key and others give examples of $50k salaries as if that is "average" - when it is well above what most New Zealanders bring in, sadly.

    Some 3news journo on the midday news yeasterday actually said that 50k was the average income.

    Can't work out why Goff keeps using "average" (actually about 40k) as a measure when everyone who cares to know knows that three quarters of earners earn less than that.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Clarke,

    What sort of average are they talking about? Mean? Median? Or Made Up?

    -36.76, 174.61 or thereab… • Since Nov 2006 • 164 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    What sort of average are they talking about? Mean? Median? Or Made Up?

    The latter, looking at Statistics NZ information on income in the June 2009 quarter. Unless our economy has grown at a phenomenal rate in the last 12 months - and isn't the Budget predicated on no such thing? - the median individual income from all sources is about $28k/year, and the mean is ~$36k.
    The only way I can find an "average wage" that approximates $50k is if I use the mean income of persons in paid employment, which I guess is a fair enough stat to use but ignores the fact that the median for the same group is far closer to $40k than $50k.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    ...on the midday news yeasterday actually said that 50k was the average income.

    they should raise their game!
    ;- )

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    It seems that the whole underlying premise of this budget (and many others before it) is: 'What tax cuts can we give to make us more popular?'

    Not quite. If popularity was what they were interested in, then they would simply have cut the lower and middle rates and shifted the top threshold, delivering the same gains to 90 - 98% of the population while not delivering an enormous windfall to the rich.

    The fact they didn't do that suggests that delivering that enormous windfall was a core goal. This was about delivering to their donors.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1717 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    The fact they didn't do that suggests that delivering that enormous windfall was a core goal. This was about delivering to their donors.

    I actually don't think the politics are that stupid. I remember some piece of evidence about tax cuts to uber-rich people. Despite the fact that 99.9% of people would never get near such an income level, they supported them because they aspired to be that rich.

    (This piece of evidence may have actually been on the West Wing, sometimes I cross over).

    I don't actually think many people in the National Party would be giving out tax cuts simply to reward themselves and their donors, though there may be some of that. I suspect that most of them, like many NZers, believe that lower taxes are good for the economy and lead to businesses coming here and educated people staying and all the stuff that Key and English fronted up and said. Often wrong, but not normally corrupt.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • webweaver,

    I'm putting my hand up to join a bunch of others here, to say that I didn't mind paying the top rate of tax, and that I'm feeling more than a little uncomfortable now it's come down (and by so much! 5%! crikey!).

    I completely believe in paying taxes - I know my taxes pay for all the great things that we share as a society, and I would FAR rather "my" taxes went on paying for vital services for people like Geo's daughter, rather than being given back to me and burning a hole in my pocket. I don't need it!

    When they were talking about the budget on telly last night and they were saying how they were closing trust loopholes and stuff, I was thinking to myself "there are clever ways to not pay as much tax via setting up trusts??" who knew?

    It's not something I would ever consider doing - to me it's wrong - it's immoral to rort the system so you pay less tax than you should - and shame on those who do it.

    I guess I'm "part of the stupid half of the top tax bracket who didn't illegally hide their income in trusts." heh.

    And Steve Barnes - you are wrong when you say that people on higher incomes rarely charge by the hour - well, you're wrong in my case because I do - and I work hard (I don't do long boozy lunches!) - because I love what I do - it just so happens that I work in an industry that pays reasonably well, but I certainly didn't plan it that way.

    I feel guilty about that when I compare the good that I do in society with the good that, say, a teacher or a nurse or a carer of the old and infirm does - and then I look at what we each get paid for doing what we do. It's fucked up, for sure.

    I/S - thanks for your spreadsheet. I feel a little sad that I got lumped together with the "tiny percentage of parasites at the top" - we're not all greedy selfish bastards, and actually some of us didn't ask for this - I vote Green - I'm no friend of National - so I find it ironic that I'm benefiting from their damned tax cuts.

    Now I just need to figure out what charity or charities I would do the most good giving my tax cut money to. Seriously.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 332 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Now I just need to figure out what charity or charities I would do the most good giving my tax cut money to. Seriously.

    Walk to your nearest soup kitchen. They seriously need your cash.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • steve black,

    A first level analysis of my situation (highly unusual perhaps) using the tax change calculator suggests that I am going to be worse off by $162 per year under the new regime. Does anybody have nice links to speeches by National leaders promising "everybody will be better off" or "nobody will be worse off"? Or were the promises always qualified by "almost" or "hardly anybody"? So who do I complain to? :-)

    How I managed to be worse off: I'm retired but a little young to get Super (thus no compensation for the GST rise). I spend all my money on living because I'm past the age of saving. I get no other government assistance because I have too many assets. My pre tax income is about $30,000 so the new regime says I get $275 more per year. Except that a chunk of my income is derived from a rental house and the removal of depreciation means I will pay $437 more in tax with that change. Net loss $162 after reducing my taxes. Big brother has raised the chocolate ration again. The rental house has no mortgage and has run at a profit for years. It makes up about 25% of my portfolio of investments which provide me with income to live on in retirement.

    If that isn't enough, I am also facing a huge increase in my ACC levy because I drive a veteran BMW R65. This has a 650cc engine which is less powerful and slower than many modern 250cc motorbikes. But they measure displacement not power (as if either of these that were an adequate measure of risk anyway). I have over 40 years of motorcycle riding with no crashes. Now I don't think I can afford to keep it, and the resale value will have been wiped out. Not amused.

    sunny mt albert • Since Jan 2007 • 116 posts Report Reply

  • webweaver,

    Walk to your nearest soup kitchen. They seriously need your cash.

    Yeah I was thinking about that. City Mission or something, you reckon?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 332 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Clarke,

    "there are clever ways to not pay as much tax via setting up trusts??" who knew?

    Most people in the top tax bracket who have an accountant with anything resembling a pulse, from my experience. Which, admittedly, isn't all of them.

    -36.76, 174.61 or thereab… • Since Nov 2006 • 164 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    City Mission or something, you reckon?

    They had to do an extra unscheduled collection just last week. So you know they need it.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Ward,

    And for all this supposed waste in Govt spending, the major thing they had to cut was early childhood education? Doesn't scream "lots of fat in the system to just chop out" to me...

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1727 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Clarke,

    The fat exists. It's just that they are, for some reason, choosing to look in the wrong places.

    -36.76, 174.61 or thereab… • Since Nov 2006 • 164 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Webweaver, your skills are valuable too - can I interest you in some pro-bono work for a good cause?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Unless our economy has grown at a phenomenal rate in the last 12 months - and isn't the Budget predicated on no such thing? - the median individual income from all sources is about $28k/year, and the mean is ~$36k.
    The only way I can find an "average wage" that approximates $50k is if I use the mean income of persons in paid employment, which I guess is a fair enough stat to use but ignores the fact that the median for the same group is far closer to $40k than $50k.

    And with the exception of Gordon Campbell, not one of our so-called "journalists" can work out that simple fact. It goes over their heads, every, single, time.

    the poor response from the left.

    Russel Norman and Metiria Turei have been saying good things, but they lack the delivery and ability to appeal to a facile media.

    I miss Sue Bradford.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    And meanwhile (literally meanwhile, while all the political reporters were locked away with the budget) the human rights commission was calling for the welfare bill to be rewritten

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1115 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    Walk to your nearest soup kitchen. They seriously need your cash.

    Or if you're desperate and jobless, and want to keep the 'jealous masses' in check...

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5445 posts Report Reply

  • webweaver,

    Webweaver, your skills are valuable too - can I interest you in some pro-bono work for a good cause?

    Let's talk! Email me!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 332 posts Report Reply

First ←Older Page 1 6 7 8 9 10 11 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.