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Inequality Rises

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, November 10th, 2010 - 53 comments
Categories: equality, wages - Tags:

Wages rose for the rich and fell for the poor this year, according to a Employers and Manufacturer’s Association survey.

Managing Directors got a 3.7% rise from $190k to $197k, whilst the unskilled production workers beneath them saw their wages drop 6.5% or $2000 to $29.5k.  On average unskilled workers wages dropped, semi-skilled workers wages were almost static (before inflation), and skilled workers saw a rise at or about the same as inflation.  Management did best, although their rates varied wildly from double-digit to pay cuts; overall they managed more than 2.5%.  IT and Human Resources did particularly well for some reason.

So what do we learn from this?  The recession (along with its coming double-dip), combined with this government, hurts the poor the hardest.  They do the work that creates management wages, and they are getting ever less from it.

A less equal society causes many social problems, so why are we moving that way?

We need more democracy in the workplace (co-ops), greater unionisation so that workers can fight for better pay, and a better wage settlement system, where there can be national agreements on wages across an industry.  And we need the wealthy to realise that sharing the company profits will increase their own happiness.

Marty: Bunji beat me to the post but I thought this graph I made would be an interesting addition. It shows the average annual pay rise, after inflation under the National and Labour governments, for the 25 job types that are provided free by the EMA survey. Note that all were positive under Labour and more than half a negative now, only one is higher under National than Labour, and they’re ordered by income (highest at left) so the steeper trend line shows the difference in pay rises for high-income vs low-income employees has increased since the recession.

53 comments on “Inequality Rises”

  1. great post, bunji. Hope you don’t mind me tacking my bit on the bottom there.

    of course, there’s another way that inequality has increased hugely in the last few years which these figures don’t show – higher unemployment. Most of the newly unemployed had lower paying jobs in the first place.

    I’ve used IRD data to work out how the income decile’s incomes changed between 2001 (when the series starts) and 2008. The most dramatic thing is the increased average income for the lowest decile, which I have to attribute to higher employment and higher minimum wage. I’ll do a post on it tomorrow.

    ps – jack johnson? Bit more of a Billy Bragg man myself

    • Bunji 1.1

      No probs Marty – great graph.

      Looking forward to the income deciles post.

      And Jack Johnson: that’s what a 2.5 year old daughter does to your music catalogue. Gotta love that Curious George. No?

      • felix 1.1.1

        “that’s what a 2.5 year old daughter does to your music catalogue.”

        FFS Bunji you’re supposed to be the adult in this relationship. If you don’t play proper music how will Miss 2.5 find out about it?

        • Bunji 1.1.1.1

          Wow, I didn’t know there was such anti-Jack Johnson feeling. I’ll get her onto my new Tommy Ill, and my old Public Enemy straight away…

          • pollywog 1.1.1.1.1

            re: the old stuff

            X-Clan or NWA…FTW !!!

            though early ATCQ, J-Beez or De La will do just as nicely…

            • freedom 1.1.1.1.1.1

              i know a couple of kids that loved the Clash and the Pixies at her age

              then there is this little gem
              pity the guy talking misses the point of it all, but the kid is brilliant!

              • aj

                My two girls got hooked on Sweet Home Alabama. Fortunately the apparent politics of the song didn’t stick

          • felix 1.1.1.1.2

            re: anti-Jack Johnson feeling

            I feel no antipathy toward him personally, he seems like a nice guy. It’s just that – to paraphrase Bill Hicks – he’s also a demon sent from hell to lower the standards.

  2. DeeDub 2

    Yep, a great post.

    But PLEASE can we NOT have the eternally bland, and largely talent free Jack Johnson on this site?

    I’m with Marty G. let’s have a committed socialist like BB instead, eh?
    Ta.

    • freedom 2.1

      agreed, certain people in the entertainment industry should be handed blindfolds and led outside for the crime that was the movie Curious George.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    The Left have to make sure this message gets out, and to make sure the working classes regain their class consciousness. These adverse changes in income inequality are only going to get worse over the next 12 months – and people must be told, this is not your PERSONAL fault and responsibility, you are caught in a wave of SOCIETAL and GOVERNMENTAL pressure and which you are labouring under.

    In other words, do not blame yourself, stand up and make your voice known to the Government and oppose its kowtowing to the wealthiest class in NZ.

    • burt 3.1

      The Left have to make sure this message gets out; National continue trend set by Labour!

      But hey lets pretend redistribution works exactly like Dr. Cullen said it would becuase that’s the way it works in socialist la la land.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        Labour’s new platform: new wealth GENERATION using the real economy, and then a FAIR DISTRIBUTION of that new wealth through society.

        Social democracy is the only realistic way forwards, the low cost energy, asset and debt bubbles that Ponzi Capitalism rely on are unsustainable in the medium and long term.

      • bbfloyd 3.1.2

        yet another freudian slip by old faithful burt… you know it’s your kids who are supposed to take the ritelin, not you?

    • Vicky32 3.2

      I spent 18 of the last 22 months blaming myself, Colonial Viper, so any reminder that it’s not my fault is very welcome, thanks! 😀
      Deb

  4. freedom 4

    The grouping of ‘skilled and ‘unskilled’ that economics throws about, irks a lot of people, is it not time we addressed this blatant misnomer.

    Just because people are on a low wage does not mean they are unskilled. Surely there is a less derogatory way of relating income brackets. Say, simply using income brackets. Not assuming the level of ability a person has is directly related to their employment renumeration.
    EG a computer tech getting $120 an hour to check you plugged the monitor in?

    For example, in today’s world it is very difficult to sell Art, especially carvings. Unless you want to produce gimmick tourist crap that is regurgitated without merit, thought or respect for the recepient.

    I can spend thirty hours designing and carving an item and be lucky to charge $300. I have hi-level design skills, exceptional technical skills and do not replicate my work, ensuring pieces that are original and unique. ‘People’ say I should be charging $60-$90 an hour for the quality of my works but i don’t see a marketforce which genuinely values original work, let alone a willingness to pay $1800+ for a bone carving.

    Consider the chef who has studied for ten years and still only gets $17 an hour on a Saturday night shift, or the cabinetmaker who crafts real wood furniture you will live with for years, he has been working his craft for thirty years and is lucky to find work paying more than $20 an hour.

    Whilst many out there are working in low income jobs with minimal ‘skills’ the overpowering image created by collectively equating pay levels with abilities is in need of an overhaul. If people are to contribute to an economy they must feel valued in the economy.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Stats NZ often cut their individual income data in a few different ways: part time/full time, then university (or tertiary) qualified, also university professionally qualified.

      But yeah, we are a low wage economy, and spending $1800 on a crafted item, no matter how nice, is something that only 5-10% of the population would ever consider.

    • Lanthanide 4.2

      ‘Unskilled’ means someone can be trained to do a job while on the job, or possibly with a week or two worth of training. You can pick generally anyone off the street to do this sort of job.

      ‘Semi-skilled’ would be the sort of job where you need real training courses to do, probably at least 6-8 weeks or longer.

      ‘Skilled’ or ‘Professional’ would be any type of job that needs 1+ years worth of training, or a university degree or apprentice-ship to attain.

      These categories completely adequately explain what level of labour mobility as well as the general pay scales involved. It’s not meant to be derogatory, it’s just describing reality.

      Also, you’re not going to pay someone $120/hr to plug in computer monitors. I work as a software developer and the starting salary for a graduate here is $45k. I know they hired a guy to do desktop support, basically as ‘semi-skilled’, and were paying him something like $25-30k.

      • freedom 4.2.1

        the computer tech example is from a real incident a coule of years back in a friend’s office, i just included it as an extreme case of how tasks are valued differently, a clumsy choice as i was attempting to refer to more curent times, i will find a better example in future.

        it does not change the fact that labelling a group of peole as unskilled , low skilled etc in this current employment climate is nuts.

        We have redundant senior office mangers working as shelf stackers in supermarkets
        We have fabricators with twenty years experience mowing lawns and grubbing roadways

        reality has screamed down the bus lane as political & economic labels sit in traffic

        • Carol 4.2.1.1

          The semi-skilled etc categories have always been a rough guide to socio-economic levels. They relate to social status as well as income. But also, within those categories there have always been problems and anomalies, especially related to gender. For instance, jobs traditionally done by women, tend to get paid less than jobs of a similar skill level traditionally done by men.

          I don’t know the current wage levels, but it used to be that something like a job for someone with a sub-degree vocational training of about 2 years in child care, would be paid less than someone with a 2 year training to be a plumber.

          And the wage levels tend to differ between the public and private sectors for “skilled” and “professional” jobs

        • Lanthanide 4.2.1.2

          I don’t think they’re labelling the people as being unskilled, but more the job that they’re in is unskilled. Your example of senior office managers working as shelf stackers only confirms it – *anyone* can be taken off the street and given an unskilled job. I agree that the description is not the best and is a little ambiguous, but that’s what is used and it’s better to simply think of the term as applying to the job, and not the person filling that job.

          Also, for the guy plugging in monitors at $120/hr, he was probably contracted to do more than that at that office. Or perhaps he was hired to do a job that he simply couldn’t do, and it was difficult to get rid of him, so they kept him on doing something productive even if he was being way overpaid for it. Or maybe they hired him to do a specific job for a client, which then got delayed for a week or two so in the meantime was doing the work available, etc. I seriously doubt that him being paid $120/hr for desktop support type job was a permanent job or one that he was hired to do at that pay level.

          Note that I’m talking about desktop support here, infrastructure engineers could still be doing this sort of menial work as just part of the job, but also the rest of the project like speccing, buying, installing and configuring servers etc. Someone still has to plug in the monitors, and it might be more cost effective for that person to just spend the couple of hours doing it rather than going through a big rigmarole of hiring someone else just for that. Infrastructure jobs are often sold as fixed-price to the customer, so it doesn’t matter what staff you use to get the job done, just as long as it’s done.

        • felix 4.2.1.3

          Your friend’s office could probably save a bit of cash by learning how to plug the monitors in themselves. Just saying…

      • mcflock 4.2.2

        let’s be hippies and say you’re both right – while a charge-out rate of $120/hr is on the high side, I know of at least one in-house IT department that works on the idiot management principle of “full cost recovery” and charges a similar rate. So yeah, all departments are required to buy IT services in-house, but their internal budgets all get gouged because it’s frowned on if they give money to another organisation.

        And most of the IT staff are tertiary students who basically act as “have you turned it off an on again?” filters – sure are hell they aren’t paid even $40/hr.

    • Shane Gallagher 4.3

      @Freedom;
      This is one of the real tragedies of a low wage economy – most people cannot afford a nice piece of art work or good artisan made furniture etc. – most of the artists I know who do okay for themselves sell most of their artwork overseas but most struggle massively.

      Most people are barely getting by and to be honest I have no idea how many people do survive on the appalling wages most people get – and it is made worse by the fact that we have to pay full international “market” prices for our foodstuffs… grumble…. and then you have rich “people” like many in National telling us all to tighten our belts while sloshing down a glass of Otago Pinot Noir… I remember hearing Katherine Rich saying that Kiwi shoppers were the most “price sensitive” in the OECD and I nearly yelled at the radio that was because they are the most poorly paid! When I came here from Ireland I took a two thirds pay cut on what I was earning and was barely able to support my small family and we were living in what I can only describe as a glorified shed of a house. Sorry – rant over…

      • freedom 4.3.1

        rants are healthy, i think more people should vent the reality of their situations.
        i hope things improve for you and for us all.
        i really hope you are finding plenty of fun, enjoying your new life in New Zealand
        ============================================================

        Shane’s comment and a few others have got me thinking…just an idea for the Standard, how about a Rant Board for fully anonymous therapeutic vents.

        No replies! No attacks on other commentators! The author still enters an email address so full moderation and site-control is possible but the site randomly assigns a name or number that removes the ‘known’ identifier of the regular commentary. Even three rants in a row would show as different unique authors, unless a person specifically chooses to use a previous name/number

        Just a full-on ‘the first thing you have to do is get angry’ styled opportunity for others to see how folks really are coping with life today. An anonymous, honest and dare i say it educational vehicle driven by people’s disasters and celebrations, their fears and triumphs all focused on helping build compassion and community in this crazy little world.

      • Olwyn 4.3.2

        Going with the localised low-wages alongside international food prices, there is also housing, which reveals the line between the the haves and have-nots as much as wages do. We have permitted home-ownership to become broadly unaffordable, especially in places those places where people can get the kind of work that would otherwise pay a mortgage. But we have not replaced home ownership with any real stability in rental accommodation. I cannot stress enough how harmful I think this is: it deprives people of the ability to form long-term plans, it robs kids of continuity in their education, and above all robs people of the grounds upon which lives are built – it is no wonder there are a lot of solo mums and so-called dead-beat dads under such conditions.

        • Vicky32 4.3.2.1

          Even the kids have a problem! (My son, a yuppie in the full sense of the word) has lived in 4 different places in 2 years after leaving home. It’s really getting to him.)
          Deb

    • Adele 4.4

      Teenaa koe, freedom

      I totally agree with you. I think the labelling derives very much from a capitalist ethic that values people as productive units only – ignoring any other usefulness they may have to society. If we value the intrinsic worth of the ‘worker’ than don’t diminish the contribution of their work as ‘unskilled’, or ‘semi-skilled.’

      That these terms are used as a matter of convention simply speaks to a convention perpetuated by those who perceive of themselves as having ‘skills’ (economists, consultants, policy makers, academics and politicians). Puukana to them.

      • Colonial Viper 4.4.1

        Well the skills you speak of aren’t the skills which form a productive economy. Fitters and turners, die makers, mechanics, maintenance engineers, software developers and testers, electronics engineers, hardware and software designers,…

        Economists, consultants, policy makers and academics? Meh. As a whole they’ve detracted from the real NZ economy in the last 30 years, not added to it. Or at best, kept it at some kind of flatline.

  5. M 5

    CV, I live in a smaller centre and it seems the information is getting out as there is a lot of unemployment in my neck of the woods so this tends to focus the minds of those so affected.

    Yesterday I was speaking with a chap who works at the local mall cleaning and we were discussing NACT and what a wally Key is – he told me that most everyone he talks to these days is of the same mind.

    Wonder how many people these days would openly admit to voting for NACT?

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Yes, I think a clear case of buyers’ regret is starting to set in. However, people with solid incomes and secure jobs still get taken with his smile and wave. And surprisingly, even if they are Lefties. I believe the wedge to drive is: “You may like John Key and yes, he’s a pretty relaxed kinda guy, but you should understand why NATIONAL is undermining your livelihood as a worker to help only the wealthiest in the country”.

      Also agreed, the unemployment and wage level situation in small centres continues to be appalling. Trying to find a job which pays even $18 or $20/hr in a town of 10,000 or 20,000 is a virtual impossibility unless you have the right connections. And the more Key and English sell their ‘recovery’ the more out of touch they are going to seem. All the strength to them.

  6. BLiP 6

    Verily, for so beloved of King John The Clueless of Charmalot was the underclass that he speaketh: go forth and multiply

    • freedom 6.1

      i have a lot of trouble watching any images of John Key as i have a brother who has a disturbingly similar appearance, as well as his vocal mannerisms and actions. It is difficult because that particular brother is bloody funny and whenever I see the PM I see an impersonation by my bro’

      As we were raised on the Goons, Python, Q, and others you can imagine the problems in keeping a straight face when looking at or even listening to the PM, regardless the quality of his new material.

  7. burt 7

    bunji

    You didn’t add politicians into the graph. That circa 9% pay rise the previous PM got every year between 1999-2008 would look rather hideous if put on that graph… would make the CEO fat cats look like they have good company….

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      How much does the PM make these days? About 9% of what the Fonterra CEO guy makes?

      Stupid unequal system, and the Fonterra guy makes about 120x what the average NZ wage earner makes. That is, makes in 3 days what the average NZ worker takes one year to earn.

      Ridiculous filthy system, out it goes.

  8. randal 8

    this is war of the rich against the poor.
    the rich are scared and greedy and cant tolerate equality because then they must be measured by wgt they do and not by what they have.
    its not rocket science.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Class consciousness has got to be revived on a massive scale.

      Even those on $50K, $60K and $70K per year are being ****’ed over by this Government. And even if they feel they are doing OK, they can see their kids and their grandkids struggling, and intuitively will know that something is very wrong.

    • Jim Nald 8.2

      Uh huh.
      You reckon Bill English is “rebalancing” the economy for the rich elite and cronies, and against the working poor?

      Watching Parliamentary Question Time and, here he goes again, with rebalancing blah blah ..

      Oh, did someone point out that “rebalancing” is a weasel word?

  9. just saying 9

    Love the way you’ve cut off the head of the fat cat with most of the money.
    Quite right.
    Very French solution.

  10. Vicky32 10

    “IT and Human Resources did particularly well for some reason.”
    IT, yes, they are useful people, but Human Resources? By and large people who work in Human Resourvces, or ‘People and Programs’ (sic) as Westpac call their HR department, are simply parasites on the worker. Three quarters of their day is spent justifying their existence, by making up more and more silly psych tests and assessments for the hapless candidate to waste time in…
    From my blog:
    “HR as a ‘profession’
    Human Resources, (or People and Programs (sic) as one Megacorp call their HR Department), is a parasitic profession. Thousands of eager young women graduate from Business courses at the lesser tertiary institutions every year, and something must be found for them to do. The men who presumably run these departments are never seen – perhaps they’re too busy having power lunches with ‘clients’?
    Meanwhile these young women (or girls, as they like to call themselves) run the HR department. They use jargon (jobs are ‘roles’, the unemployed are ‘candidates’, psychological testing, is ‘assessment’ – more about that later!)
    There’s a kind of nepotism involved. These “girls” like to choose people like themselves, “girls” or men from the same schools, same backgrounds, belief systems and even suburbs! National or ACT voters are preferred, and those who are too independent in their thinking discouraged.
    Psychological testing.
    It’s the latest toy for the HR girls (and boys, those few the worker sees). But as I’ve discovered, they don’t really understand it themselves. Having ‘failed’ a test at one of the Megacorps, I asked the H.R bunny to explain why the software had flagged me as “not recommended”. She couldn’t tell me, she didn’t understand why, herself! Like far too many in her profession, she operated the system, but hadn’t the least idea how it worked. She lost her temper, and I am ashamed to say I lost mine, the result being that I will never know why Megacorp 1 didn’t want me.
    Megacorp 2 uses the same software and the same test, with the addition of one or two others – including group role-play. Megacorp 2’s system is even more of a trap for the worker… in my “feedback”, I learned that I had failed to tread a very fine line (that I honestly hadn’t known existed) between failing to advocate for the position I’d been given to role-play, and continuing to advocate for that preference when I should have abased myself to the group when it was clear that my ’cause’ was lost! This was all for the sake of a call centre job, answering phones for rotating shifts over 24 hours. (Not that in reality, any one’s going to phone Megacorp 2 at 03.00 asking for their credit card limit to be increased. Not unless they’re a gambler, clinically insane or or overseas.) The strangest thing about the whole experience at Megacorp 2, is that they had invited me to attend their assessment day!
    Had you ever wondered why your bank fees are so high? Megacorp 2 devoted 5 HR people to testing, interviewing and ‘be-friending’ us, for a day. I wasn’t foolish enough to think that the idle chat while we waited for ‘tests’ (only one of which actually involved skills!) and interviews was simply that, ‘chat’. Despite that I knew that every idle word would be reported back, it didn’t help me at all. I discovered from my “feedback” this morning that the head of the team had made up her mind five minutes after I arrived. Pity. I’d have saved myself a day wasted at Megacorp – at least I got to drink their coffee! Your bank fees go on overseas profits, yes, but also on the time of 5-6 HR people, (half a million a year, is my estimate), new buildings (the artwork in Megacorp’s cleverly concealed CBD HQ would have cost another million at least), state of the art, boasted-of coffee machines on every floor, and an air of luxury better suited to a top hotel. All of this is not for the benefit of the workers, but for the HR parasites.”
    Deb

    • M 10.1

      Deb

      Anti-spam: acting, LOL!

      Fantastic observations. From humble beginnings in the public service where a staff clerk did staff (now HR) administration and payroll there was an explosion in the ’80s into all sorts of stuff. I remember EEO was a full-time job for someone who seemed to have an inordinate amount of time to swan around gossiping and ensuring her hair and make up were perfect, and on a massive salary too. I really appreciate seeing people looking sharp for work but hell, does a person have to be paid to ensure they are for half the day?

      Why can’t employers as part of the interviewing process get a candidate to do a Myer-Briggs test or whatever the flavour of the month is test-wise and then begin the interview proper. Most interviewers with a bit of nous can make notes on whether or not answers are consistent or ‘gel’.

      An old workmate and good friend put the HR phenomenon in a nutshell very well by saying she thought the HR thing was nothing more than a bunch of grown women playing employment agencies all day, and as you say making up a whole bunch of blather to justify their existence. Not too different from economists playing around with their graphs all day and making predictions that are often wrong. Hate to say it but many in this field are also some of the most disingenuous people you’re ever likely to meet – you wouldn’t want to turn your back on them.

      As you say they have the blinkers on and operate the system but would appear to be incapable of independent thought.

      Parasites is on the money – definitely a case of style over substance.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        Perhaps you have seen Catbert – the Evil HR Manager

        • M 10.1.1.1

          No, lol and a feline is the perfect character.

        • Vicky32 10.1.1.2

          Oh yes, I love the character of Catbert! Thanks, M, you are so right… I just tangled with the HR woman at a school where I worked last year… they were caught out lying to IRD and saying I had worked there from 4.08.09 to 12.1.10 – I so wish that had been true, but no, it wasn’t – and because of IRD/WINZ data matching WINZ wanted me to pay back the student allowance and UB I had got during the period of my “employment”. Luckily I was able to convince the woman in the data matching unit that the benefit people already had all the details of the 7 weeks I had *actually* worked there… So, I rang the HR woman and asked WTF? Her answer was “I know nothing”: well, no surprises there!
          Warning to all – avoid AIS St Helens, as a school and as a workplace. Unethical might as well be part of their name.
          Deb

          • Vicky32 10.1.1.2.1

            I wonder – can anyone with a better knowledge of tax/employment law than I have, theorise for me what they might have gained by telling IRD I worked for them for 5 months when it was actually 7 weeks? Or maybe it’s NZQA they want to convince… as I have quals and they need teachers what have them?

            • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.2.1.1

              they paid a mate out of the school’s wages using your name on the payroll. Just theorising.

              • Vicky32

                Yes, thanks, that makes sense! (They would have assumed that I would never know about it.)
                Deb

  11. Herodotus 11

    Marty, I notice you referred to pay increases, from reading this I take it you refer to gross pay, so tax rates are not taken into account? then there is tax creep that meant that in many cases under Lab many were going backwards in real terms in disposable incomes. Plus the many new taxes, increase in taxes/duties that have been thrusted upon us over the years just to take more away from us and we see less been delivered back from govt services.
    You can throw up many graphs/stats regarding Nat/Lab yet many know that life has been and still is getting harder, and neither Nat or Lab has a clue what do to.

    • Herodotus 11.1

      Final comment the OCR was 4.5 when Lab regained power in 99 and was 7.5 on them leaving, morgage rates were about 10% (floating in 08) this hit households hard. Do not paint that under Lab all was rosey. It was hard for many, and some of these were families in the top income brackets.
      We see marginal diminishment of our incomes over time, as we become ever increasing slaves to debt.

      • Colonial Viper 11.1.1

        Herod. real incomes in NZ have not kept pace with per capita GDP growth. The fact is that those who hold capital wealth are skimming off the positive difference created by ‘productivity increases’ from ordinary workers, and they manage to do this when real pay rates and conditions are essentially suppressed. Australia makes us look even worse, but their economy is being given billions a month by one of the few countries in the world with truly excessive capital reserves – China.

        As for your point on increased mortgage rates. Well, the 5th Labour Govt should be held accountable for letting the property and debt bubbles to become such a large feature of our economy. They also knew that our interest rates were attracting a shed load of hot speculative highly liquid inflows from countries like Japan. There was no excuse for it as none of it was in the best interests of the ‘real economy’ or the country. Forcing our currency to strengthen so that we can buy cheap trinkets from China and South Korea, while our exporters closed down, our farmers got paid less and NZers stayed unemployed. Stupid.

        yet many know that life has been and still is getting harder, and neither Nat or Lab has a clue what do to.

        I think on degrees of cluelessness, National/Brash/English/Key wins top prize. Labour knows that NZ needs to make some tough choices around how it is going to generate more added value goods and services in its economy and how it is going to make sure that it is paid for those things internationally.

        And these are things that Labour is directly addressing in 2011 – currency controls, CGT vs PAYE, RB Act, affordable state subsidised housing, R&D incentives, savings incentives, real economy sector assistance, minimum wage increase to $15 during their first term in office, Government procurement policies, shifting capital out of the property market (= lower property prices), building up + use of the Cullen Fund.

        Some of this stuff is really going to hurt some sectors which have risen up around the asset/debt/financial speculation of the last 15 years. But it must be done, and perhaps even more.

  12. Luxated 12

    Two quick corrections to Marty’s addendum.

    Note that all were positive under Labour and more than half a negative now, only one is higher under National than Labour…

    Firstly according to the graph Human Resources Managers did seem to have a very modest pay cut in real terms under Labour, secondly both Human Resources Managers and Registered Electricians have had greater pay increases under National.

    Doesn’t really change the underlying statement mind you.

  13. john 13

    The ACT-nat party look up to the US for its free market(Not true when NANNY STATE bails out the banks for trillions the US is country run for the rich,it is not a free market) and downer on Welfare.Yet inequality in the US is at BANANA REPUBLIC levels with all the sad consequences that flow from that, including a rapacious wealthy elite that off-shores most of the manufacturing so their profits and their wealth increase, Result!? 43,0 0 0, 0 0 0 Americans exist on food handouts!If they didn’t get those they’d be looking like Somalian famine victims after a few months! Refer link:
    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article26792.htm

    I can’t understand why Wodney and John can’t just emigrate there and leave us in peace.

    • Vicky32 13.1

      “I can’t understand why Wodney and John can’t just emigrate there and leave us in peace.”
      Because there they’d be teensy wittle fwogs in a giant pond! 😀
      Deb

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