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UBI

Written By: - Date published: 8:47 pm, January 7th, 2014 - 359 comments

New Zealand was once considered one of the best places on earth to live. It could be again …

All hail RBNZ independence! – Armstrong

Written By: - Date published: 10:32 am, October 5th, 2013 - 94 comments

Old man Armstrong’s out on the Herald’s front lawn this morning, shaking his fist and telling those bloody kids in Labour to stop questioning whether the Reserve Bank is doing the right thing. They should sit quietly and accept whatever the Bank decides to do. This is called ‘consensus’, apparently. Problem is, Armstrong provides no justification for complete RB independence.

UBI. (Universal Basic Income).

Written By: - Date published: 11:58 am, September 5th, 2013 - 230 comments

The concept of UBI has a long history in New Zealand.

Of course, we already have a UBI for those over 65.  Which has been extremely successful at eliminating poverty amongst the elderly, at a very moderate cost by international standards.

Why I electorate vote Cunliffe: op ed

Written By: - Date published: 12:10 pm, August 23rd, 2013 - 137 comments

I wasn’t going to express my opinion on the upcoming Labour leadership selection process. However, the usual right leaning MSM hacks seem to have been following the current Labour caucus leadership in naming Robertson as the frontrunner. This is my op ed testimony for my frontrunner, the MP for my electorate: Cunliffe.

The magical world of New Zealand’s, Neo-Liberal right wing.

Written By: - Date published: 6:06 am, August 1st, 2013 - 82 comments

It has been obvious that some people live in a different world than the rest of us. One where Chicago school economics, work! One where you save the village by blowing it up! One where global warming can be stopped, Canute like, by legislation. One where dropping wages and giving everything to bloated financiers, makes […]

Should a country be run like a business?

Written By: - Date published: 2:50 pm, June 22nd, 2013 - 102 comments

Many business people say that a country should be run like a business. Maybe they are right. It should be run like a SUCCESSFUL business. It is appropriate for Government to take lessons from business success, and the reverse. But when it comes down to details, right wing Neo-Liberal business do not want Government and country they govern to become too successful or democratic…

Why Doug Heffernan wants you to keep paying too much for power

Written By: - Date published: 7:32 am, April 29th, 2013 - 49 comments

John Key has committed to giving up the National Party’s leadership if he loses the next election. That didn’t stop him from committing the next National Government from reversing NZ Power and putting up electricity prices whenever it comes to power . It got me thinking about the people who are so keen to kill NZ Power in its cradle and why. Today: MRP CEO Doug Heffernan.

One day older and deeper in debt

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, March 21st, 2013 - 103 comments

There’s this almost puritan kind of myth that we’ve got so much international debt as punishment for our spendthrift ways. We ‘live beyond our means’, apparently. But it’s not true. If ‘our means’ is the money we make in exports, then most of the time, they exceed what we spend on imports. Yet, we run a $10 billion deficit as a country. Why? Because of the profit outflow.

Hatin’ on the left

Written By: - Date published: 8:45 pm, February 10th, 2013 - 432 comments

So Trevor Mallard thinks it’s smart to stick the boot in to Russell Norman for linking to an article about using the printing of money as a tool of monetary policy. Well it says a lot more about the state of the Labour Party than anything else. It just goes to show what happens when […]

Reserve Bank admits problem, sits on hands

Written By: - Date published: 1:27 pm, January 31st, 2013 - 14 comments

Inflation is still below the Reserve Bank’s  target band of 1-3%. It says: “ This mainly reflects the impact of the overvalued New Zealand dollar.” The high and overvalued dollar keeps import prices down , but kills exporters who must provide for our economy’s future. The Reserve Bank’s obsession with the very different problems of the 1980’s means that as a country we are eating our seed corn.

Turei: Green Party retrospective

Written By: - Date published: 11:26 am, December 19th, 2012 - 44 comments

Green Party co-leader, Metiria Turei, was confident and clear on TV3, talking about their consistent, disciplined & successful year &: the RONS tax, MP pay rise, government’s poor record, the economy, printing money, jobs, equality issues and child poverty.  Little on green issues. Zero on the climate.  [Update] Turei RNZ interviews.

‘What crisis?’ Rudderless ship, stormy seas

Written By: - Date published: 8:03 am, October 14th, 2012 - 132 comments

There is ample evidence of a deep and lasting crisis, but in the delusional world of Planet Key it doesn’t exist. The EPMU Job Crisis Summit  opened a much needed conversation.  Russel Norman likened the New Zealand economy to a rudderless sailing ship In Stormy Seas.  Will the summit be the start of a sea change for NZ?

Research-based opinions

Written By: - Date published: 11:12 am, October 11th, 2012 - 62 comments

Bill English on quantitative easing: “There are big risks with it and it is just barmy to suggest that in an economy growing at all that you would do it”. So, are the countries that are using QE to push up our currency growing? EU: -0.3% (14 of the 27 member states are growing), US: 2.1%, Switzerland: 0.6%, Japan: 3.3%. So, yes, countries use QE while growing – and it lets their businesses undercut ours.

Nats: no plan, no hope to offer

Written By: - Date published: 9:06 pm, October 7th, 2012 - 8 comments

I turned on the news hoping to see the Nats’ rebuttal of the Greens’ detailed plan to protect Kiwi manufacturing like our competitors are doing. Instead, I saw a smirking fuck who has overseen the loss of 40,000 manufacturing jobs say ‘the high dollar’s good’. Joyce actually says a over-valued dollar is a good thing. ‘Flat-screen tellies are cheaper! Pity you don’t have a job to buy one!’

Greens call for new tools, QE to save jobs

Written By: - Date published: 9:51 am, October 7th, 2012 - 327 comments

40,000 manufacturing jobs gone in four years. Manufactured exports in free-fall. Tourism revenue collapsing. If that’s not a crisis, what is? Why is the government going to do? Nothing. Nothing. On Q+A, Russel Norman put forward a solid proposal: lower the OCR, new tools to stop housing booms, and quantitative easing to pay for Christchurch […]

Hands on Labour

Written By: - Date published: 9:51 pm, August 16th, 2012 - 31 comments

Fresh ideas to grow a stronger manufacturing sector, on top of the major changes Labour has already signalled featured in a speech given today by David Parker to a union audience in Wellington. David Cunliffe was there too,  and I particularly liked the  discussion afterwards. The key players are receptive to good ideas and it looks like Labour will have a real alternative to offer at the next election.

Darkhorse: Roger’s legacy – the fallacy of economic efficiencies under a neoliberal regime

Written By: - Date published: 10:02 am, July 16th, 2012 - 18 comments

Darkhorse writes amazingly insightful economic pieces on his ‘How Daft’ blog (the title gives you a clue as to what he thinks of the current state of affairs). The neoliberal experiment has been an abject failure by any rational measure. And there are alternatives. Darkhorse has given us permission to syndicate his posts, the originals are here.

Darkhorse: The Reserve Bank Act; Or why we are broke

Written By: - Date published: 9:20 am, July 9th, 2012 - 47 comments

Darkhorse writes amazingly insightful economic pieces on his ‘How Daft’ blog (the title gives you a clue as to what he thinks of the current state of affairs). The neoliberal experiment has been an abject failure by any rational measure. And there are alternatives. Darkhorse has given us permission to syndicate his posts, the originals are here.

Positive Money & the Wizard of Oz

Written By: - Date published: 1:58 pm, July 7th, 2012 - 13 comments

In our current system, we give men like Bob Diamond the immense power to create money. Need it be so? The Positive Money movement wishes to change that, and give that power back to Government. The first Labour Government used the power to create a better NZ – we could do that again.

Know when to fold ’em

Written By: - Date published: 7:29 am, June 19th, 2012 - 8 comments

Key’s ditched  the surplus target that was so important a month ago –  yet another casualty on the way to the brighter future. The Queen may have asked him why he didn’t see European contagion coming. Shearer is right – Europe is an excuse for a government that has run out of ideas. Labour does have a fresh approach – we need to hear more.

At least Parker’s onto it

Written By: - Date published: 5:33 pm, June 5th, 2012 - 80 comments

The news out of Europe, China and Australia is looking worse by the day. What’s coming at us doesn’t look pretty. I was about to do a post saying I hoped someone in Labour was doing some scenario planning and was very pleased to see today that Parker’s  eyes are open.

Hickey on playing by the rules

Written By: - Date published: 8:49 am, February 5th, 2012 - 129 comments

While the rest of the world is moving away from the ‘hands off’ monetary policy that became fashionable in the 80s, our government insists on playing by the outmoded neoliberal ‘rules’ of a clean float. Well, what happens when everyone else ‘cheats’ by printing free money to drive their currencies lower and we sit on our hands? We lose our assets and our exporters.

Who’s walking the talk on economic sovereignty?

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, October 10th, 2011 - 27 comments

Who said this on the double downgrade: “We have this ongoing challenge of a negative investment balance – the profits and dividends that go back to the foreign owners of New Zealand assets. We need to generate the kind of savings that will help New Zealand buy back those assets. A good example would be the Z petrol stations that were bought off Shell (by The Cullen Fund and Infratil).”?

Vampire Economics: The Reserve Bank Act

Written By: - Date published: 1:03 pm, August 19th, 2011 - 50 comments

I came across this blog called Howdaft written by Darkhorse recently. It consists of five posts written in June. Five of the best pieces of leftwing economic thinking you’ll see anywhere – something we’ve been short on recently. I’ve tried to contact Darkhorse, but no luck. If you’re out there, drop us a line. In the mean time, here’s one of the posts.

Keynes vs Hayek debate at the London School of Economics

Written By: - Date published: 12:28 am, August 6th, 2011 - 25 comments

BBC Radio 4 in the UK has a very interesting debate pitting followers of Keynes vs those of Hayek

Hickey’s prescription for the currency

Written By: - Date published: 12:26 pm, August 3rd, 2011 - 36 comments

The neoliberal myth is that government economic policy doesn’t really matter, it can’t affect the economy – apart from being an anchor on growth. The truth is, government is the biggest actor in our economy. What it does matters. Bernard Hickey has listed 10 ways that the government could act to get the exchange rate down.

Dutch disease

Written By: - Date published: 5:10 pm, June 21st, 2011 - 68 comments

No it’s not a virus. It’s our dollar surfing on a dumper. Gareth Morgan and Neville Bennett have both written about it recently. Bennett says “There is increasing evidence that New Zealand is ailing. The symptoms are a high exchange rate, excessive foreign debt and a decline of the manufacturing sector.” The resulting damage if nothing is done, says Morgan, is  “a hollowing out of our non-commodity producing businesses, no correction in our household savings rate and in time, a balance of payments/external debt crisis as those factors conspire.” Bennett is not in the camp of those who say nothing can be done and offers some ideas backed up by the IMF. We need more thinking like that.

Expansionary austerity – fail

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, April 21st, 2011 - 32 comments

Expansionary austerity is the idea that cutbacks in government spending can stimulate economic growth.  Empirical evidence shows that it doesn’t work.  Current experience shows that  it’s not working in Britain, and it isn’t working here.  Like “trickle down economics” this favourite of the political Right is not so much a theory as a deluded fantasy.

Hickey on borrowing

Written By: - Date published: 6:58 am, March 28th, 2011 - 79 comments

The latest piece from economist Bernard Hickey is a despairing warning on the subject of borrowing.  With the current government making things worse not better, is there any way out of this downwards spiral?

Today’s Economic Roundup

Written By: - Date published: 10:16 am, March 10th, 2011 - 33 comments

Digested: the Reserve Bank cuts rates, the dollar weakens, oil prices rise and Sovereign Homes goes out of business.

Monetary Policy

Written By: - Date published: 7:14 am, February 14th, 2011 - 12 comments

John Key wants to take credit for Allan Bollard’s good work. The Reserve Bank is having to step outside its remit to save our economy from a National government and this is the thanks he gets…

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