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Most kiwis support more tax

Written By: - Date published: 10:27 am, May 11th, 2018 - 199 comments
Categories: capitalism, Economy, greens, labour, newspapers, tax - Tags:

You know the right wing mantra that reduced taxes will bring nirvana to us all?

Well most kiwis disagree.  From Isaac Davidson at the Herald:

A majority of New Zealanders say they would support higher or new taxes to maintain funding for schools, hospitals and transport systems, according to polling by trade unions.

And despite the Government ruling out income tax rises, there appears to be public support for them – at least for the wealthiest earners.

The Council of Trade Unions (CTU) commissioned the polling by UMR to inform its submission to the Tax Working Group.

The working group’s recommendations will influence the Labour-led Government’s new tax policy, which it will take to the 2020 election.

The CTU’s polling on income taxes is notable because Government has already ruled them outside of the tax working group’s terms of reference.

Asked whether the union body wanted the Government to change that decision, CTU secretary Sam Huggard said income taxes “should still be part of the mix”.

“The working group has flexibility in terms of recommending further reviews,” he said.

“So if they were convinced with our argument they could recommend Government consider further reviews in this area.”

And the detail in the polling is fascinating:

A majority of people said top earners in New Zealand paid too little tax, and 66 per cent of people supported a fifth tax bracket for those earning well over $70,000.

The top tax rate now is 33 cents for income of more than $70,000.

The CTU, which represents 360,000 workers, wanted those earning more than two times the average wage to be taxed at 38c.

Labour has previously called for a 36 per cent tax rate for people earning above $150,000, though that is no longer party policy. The Greens went to the election with a policy of a 40 per cent tax rate for top earners.

Did you know that the top tax rate in Denmark was 60%?  New Zealand’s top tax rate is 33%.

And the overwhelming majority of Kiwis prefer higher taxes so that we can fix up our failing infrastructure.

Nine out of ten of those polled said public services like hospitals, schools and transport needed more funding – a figure which surprised the union.

Two-thirds of them agreed that the Government should raise taxes to ensure that public services remained at the same level in future.

Huggard said it was “an inescapable fact” that Government would need to raise revenue in coming years to rebuild public services.

The polling showed that there was a public mood for raising more revenue and looking at a wider range of revenue beyond just company tax and income, he said.

That included removing tax on the first few thousand dollars of personal income – a move that was backed by 87 per cent of people.

Other popular alternatives were an environmental tax for companies which continued to produce pollution, or taxes on wealth, such an inheritance tax.

And the most radical tax proposal, introduction of a Tobin tax was remarkably popular with 37 % supporting the introduction on an automatic tax on every automatic financial tax and with 53% opposed.

Clearly kiwis want their government to function properly. And are prepared to fund it so that this occurs.

199 comments on “Most kiwis support more tax ”

  1. James B 1

    A union poll of 900 people is not “overwhelming majority of Kiwis” and the two questions were loaded….Stop the “Tax Waffle”

    • mickysavage 1.1

      A scientifically conducted poll by a reputable polling company … and the article does not give the text of the questions asked.

      • Baba Yaga 1.1.1

        Bullshit. If this was a genuine attempt to be in any way unbiased, a third question should have been asked:

        3. Do you support using the increasing revenue from a growing economy to invest in more public services, rather tan tax changes.

        This survey is conducted by UMR, Labour’s toyboys, and commissioned by Labour’s funders. Don’t pretend this is anything other than utter bullshit.

        • mickysavage

          Just checking have you actually read the UMR report?

        • AB

          “using the increasing revenue from a growing economy”
          And how do you grow the economy? Clue – the answer is NOT tax cuts as the cartoon above so brilliantly shows.
          At least not the sort of tax cuts that we normally get, which favour the rich. There are a couple of ways of using tax to help grow the economy:
          a.) Redistribute the tax burden so the rich pay more tax and the poor less. The poor spend much of their income into the productive economy. The rich invest windfall tax cuts into speculative bubbles in the hope of harvesting capital gain. Capital gain is just such an easy gig compared to being the mythical entrepreneur who goes out and sets up a new, innovative business and grows the pie! As we see with our housing crisis, encouraging the pursuit of capital gain just causes widespread harm. Higher taxes on the rich also encourage them to work harder and be more productive, rather than just cruise along (lol)!
          b.) Increase the tax take for a specific period of time and have the government spend that on productive activity to make up the infrastructure shortfall.

          The poll result above is a nice indicator that people are maybe getting these very basic ideas. The brilliance of the cartoon above is the fact that there are so many empty watering cans lying around. The fact that the same idea has been tried so often and not worked is clear evidence that it is ideology and not economics (though perhaps economics IS just ideology?)

          • indiana

            …or maybe there are no workers to lift the watering cans because they have moved to economies where they are taxed less? If there are no workers to water the pot plant, what hope do you have?

            • Draco T Bastard

              Plenty of workers here who are paying their taxes.

              There’s plenty of rich people who just bludge off of the workers and don’t pay their taxes if they can possibly help it.

              The problem is the rich – not the workers.

            • UncookedSelachimorpha

              Quality of life is usually better in countries with higher taxes….go figure.

          • Baba Yaga

            “And how do you grow the economy? Clue – the answer is NOT tax cuts as the cartoon above so brilliantly shows.”

            There is no mention of tax cuts. This pathetic excuse for a poll was about tax increases.

            As for the impact of tax cuts, I prefer evidence to cartoons. The tax cuts initiated by National during the GFC kick-started our economy and led to one of the fastest recoveries in the developed world.

            • tracey

              Can you point to proof that the tax cuts to our top earners did anything of the sort? Especially as traditional economics suggests stimulating an economy does not come from cutting top taxes. You might be mixing up the impact of the tax cuts with the later influx of i surance money.

              On the one hand tgey cut top taxes on the other they increased everyones taxes through raising GST 2.5% and fuel tax 6 times…

              • Baba Yaga

                “Can you point to proof that the tax cuts to our top earners did anything of the sort? ”
                No, because that isn’t what I said. Everyone working received tax cuts. Those tax cuts stimulated the economy and led to the one of the fastest recoveries from the GFC (and a recession at least in part induced by Cullen economics) in the developed world.

                • Korero Pono

                  “Everyone working received tax cuts”

                  So true… but so very very deceptive (and simple) at the same time.

                  Whilst every working person received tax cuts, for many low income workers those tax cuts were negated by the subsequent rise in GST. In fact many low income workers were far worse off because it.

                  Those benefiting from the tax cuts were those on the highest incomes, middle to low income workers were either no better off (middle income earners) or were worse off (low income workers). (Rashbrooke, 2013).

                  • Babayaga

                    You make the mistake of not understanding the disproportionate amount of GST the wealthy pay on discretionary spend.

                    • Incognito

                      You make the mistake of not understanding the disproportionate amount of GST the poor pay on essential spend.


                    • Korero Pono

                      I don’t make that mistake at all , perhaps you should have that conversation with Max Rashbrooke and tell him how ‘right’ you are (pun intended).

                    • Baba Yaga

                      Do you know what discretionary spend is? How much discretionary spend do the poor have?

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “I don’t make that mistake at all…”
                      Yeah, you did. Rashbrooke referred to tax cuts, not GST. The cash wealthy spend far more on discretionary items that than ‘poor’ (a relative term, but I’ll use it for the purposes of this discussion), and pay the GST accordingly.

                    • Ed

                      You are either a fool or a shill.
                      I sense the latter.
                      Sad really.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “Sad really.”
                      Do you agree that the wealthy spend more on discretionary items than the poor?

                    • Ed

                      The poor spend a much larger proportion of their wages on GST than the rich.
                      Here you are again, spending your time, arguing the corner of the wealthy.
                      Why do you defend them?

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “The poor spend a much larger proportion of their wages on GST than the rich.”

                      There you go, making claims you haven’t supported with evidence. And what does that claim even mean? Tax is collected as a quantum, how much total tax is collected from the rich as opposed to the poor? How much tax do the poor even pay, net? Sweet FA as it happens.

            • UncookedSelachimorpha

              ” The tax cuts initiated by National during the GFC kick-started our economy and led to one of the fastest recoveries in the developed world.”

              Yeah right. More like an earthquake and allowing unplanned and unsustainable immigration.

              • Babayaga

                Rebuilding a major city, sure, but that growth slowed some time ago. Our economy is growing across many sectors, and will continue to in the foreseeable future due to Nationals economic prudence.

                • UncookedSelachimorpha

                  Prudence, like stopping payments into the superfund, a decision which lost the country billions.

                  Being greedy and selfish, is not the same thing as being economically wise or prudent.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Do you support using the increasing revenue from a growing economy to invest in more public services, rather tan tax changes.

          That is actually a loaded question and is thus deceitful. It assumes that 1) we have a growing economy and 2) that it thus produces more money available for public services.

          Considering that the public service is underfunded and that giving tax cuts to the wealthy hasn’t resulted in either huge growth or greater amounts for public services we must assume that one or both of those assumptions are wrong.

          • Enough is Enough

            “That is actually a loaded question and is thus deceitful”

            I think that is the point he was trying to make. The two questions asked by the CTU were equally loaded. The questions infer that:

            1. An increase in taxes is required for public services to be maintained at the level they are today; and

            2. Public Services will run down if taxes do not increase.

            Unless you want public services to be run down (which other than the 1%, no one does) you can only answer CTUs question one way.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Link to the actual questions please.

              Without those then you have nothing to base what you’re saying upon.

              • Enough is Enough

                I am guessing you haven’t read all the comment below??

                Have a look at comment 6.2

                And for the record, in my view public services are underfunded and we should be collecting more revenue from the rich to improve the broken public sector.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  So, you’re basing your entire analysis on one question?

                  • Enough is Enough


                    I’m pointing out the survey loses credibility when it asks loaded questions like that. The dozens of comments on this particular post (from both the left and right) demonstrate that.

          • Baba Yaga

            “That is actually a loaded question and is thus deceitful. It assumes that 1) we have a growing economy…”
            No, it doesn’t. The question is framed for a time when we do have a growing economy. Oh, and by the way we do.

            ” and 2) that it thus produces more money available for public services.”
            Well duh. What do you think is happening now with the government coffers? Where is Labour getting all of the money it is splashing around like drunken sailors?

          • phil

            It is even worse than that.

            It assumes that a growing economy is desirable. Clearly it is not: it is destroying the natural environment which in turn will cause the collapse of our civilisaton and of the economy along with it.

        • tracey

          Like the pre 2014 election polling which asked me which party leader I preferred and left of the Green co leaders but offered Bill English? That kind of BS polling which people like you loved cos it said your team was winning?

          • Baba Yaga

            Do you have any evidence I ‘loved’ that sort of polling? Sounds as dodgy as Phil Twyfords housing promises.

      • JM 1.1.2

        Please select from one of the following poll options:

        a) the government should increase tax to at least maintain public services at their current levels into the future, or,

        b) tax collected should stay the same while reducing public services.


      • Enough is Enough 1.1.3

        Micky I support higher income earners paying more tax.

        However the question asked in the survey was more leading than the pro-smacking question from a decade ago.

        UMR loses credibility when the issue is framed in this way. It was a terrible poll question

      • Notreadyet 1.1.4

        Well you need to find out what they were then before writing such an article, my understanding is that the questions we’re framed in such a way that there would be either more tax or less services

    • Ed 1.2

      Are you for real?

  2. indiana 2

    “The poll of 700 people took place In late April and had a margin of error of 3.7 per cent.”

    Were only the CTU Members polled? Well maybe only 0.21% of them.

    About the Council of Trade Unions Te Kauae Kaimahi
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions Te Kauae Kaimahi brings together over 320,000 New Zealand union members in 31 affiliated unions. We are the united voice for working people and their families in New Zealand.

    • indiana 2.1

      Another analysis of the poll questions:

      • James B 2.1.1

        b) tax collected should stay the same while reducing public services,,,

        Says it all…Loaded

        However I do believe that those who are creaming it at the top should pay more Tax or close the loop holes that allow them to avoid Tax. Lets start with the Politicians!

        • cleangreen

          We need more tax here, as a small country with many poor and rich investors are now flooding in here and stealing our assets.

          We are finding since our public assets are shrinking so is our tax base is shrinking as our government earnings are lower now.

          So we must tax the rich and the carpetbaggers, and opportunists who are only here to rort the system.

          Make NZ a “user pays”tax base not a ‘subidised for the rich and the poor’ false economy.

          • Gosman

            Stealing your assets??? How exactly are you assets being stolen?

            • Stuart Munro

              Privatisation has never produced the promised benefits. Since that was the premise under which they were privatized, they should revert to the previous model. All of them.

              • Gosman

                What were the promised benefits?

                • Stuart Munro

                  Lower costs and improved services.

                  • Gosman

                    Not really. Privatisation can never deliver those in all cases. It is more about not wasting Government money on risky commercial enterprises and allowing them to actually functional like proper businesses instead of government agencies.

                    • tracey

                      Max Bradford promised both

                    • Tuppence Shrewsbury

                      Still fighting the last generations battles tracey. You’ll always win them against yourself in the shower

                    • Tracey


                      Just ensuring people understand Max Bradford and more recently the Key govt extolled the lower costs and better services the private sector coukd provide. Like SERCO.

                      Bradford isnt a ghost Tupper, he lives on in many members of the NAT and ACT partied. The lies remain alive, breathing and regurgitated by supporters and MPs alike.

                    • Gosman []

                      There is no guarantee the private sector does things cheaper and better than the State sector in all circumstances. They generally do but it is largely irrelevant in relation to arguments over privatisation.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      No, what it’s really about is scurrilous assholes making off with public assets and cash flows.

                      Best reason to close that shit down – it never lives up to its promises, and it is invariably more expensive than public provision.

              • Gosman

                Why do you think no mainstream political party in NZ is making that a major platform Stuart?

                • Stuart Munro


                  They don’t strain themselves to represent their citizens.

                  And a few are indeed still dumb enough to buy neo-liberal lies.

                  • Gosman

                    Yet not even NZ First is busting a gut on the issue.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      There’s the potential of a public resistance point. While the majority probably do favour tax increases, the usual suspects (MSM & brain dead morons like Hosking) will piss and moan every step of the way. NZF are busy atm, trying to keep enough promises to retain their base. The finer points of representative democracy will only be pursued if they are pressed to do so.

                    • Gosman []

                      Are you trying to claim the issue of renationalisation won’t attract people to NZ First?

                    • Stuart Munro

                      It doesn’t come for free – NZF can’t have repossession of the stolen assets just for the asking.

                      Although the powercos, having obtained these assets under false pretenses, do not deserve to be paid for them, the expectation is that when they are renationalized they will receive some payment in relation to the value of those assets.

                      As the coalition struggles to find funds to repair the gross negligence and fiscal improvidence that characterized the last government the last thing they need is greater demands on their funds.

              • cleangreen

                100% Stuart; Privatisation is the right wing stealing from us as our tax paid assets.

                But it seems Gosman doesn’t know what ‘privatisation’ means obviously.

                • paul andersen

                  he does know what privatisation means, but thinks (incorrectly) that he is above it, it wont affect him, or he can buy shares in an appreaciating asset.always wrong on the first two and a gamble on the third.

                  • Gosman

                    No. I think taxpayer funds are better spent on core government activities like infrastructure and schools and hospitals rather than in commercial enterprises.

                • Gosman

                  Hiw is it stealing from you?

                  • In Vino

                    The funds for charter schools come out of Education funds, and the funding for state schools is thereby increased by less – as a right wing Govt always ensures.

        • indiana

          but its a “A scientifically conducted poll by a reputable polling company”…its not fake news.

      • Baba Yaga 2.1.2

        Yes, this poll is so amateurish it makes you wonder how serious UMR really are as a polling company.

        • cleangreen

          UMR is good as a sounding board, with a good track record of where we need to go believe it or not.

          • Baba Yaga

            Not on the basis of this poll they aren’t. They should hang their heads in shame.

            • indiana

              Why would they? The CTU most likely gave them the questions and all the UMR did was collect the data. The CTU should hang their heads in shame for wasting money on these sorts of expenses, when they should be spent on their members, not lobbying for the Tax Working Group.

              • Baba Yaga

                You could be right. Imagine how the left would squeal if the EMA gave loaded questions to David Farrar and published the resulting crock.

                • tracey

                  They dont need to load them. His inherent bias helps

                  • Baba Yaga

                    As does the CTU’s!

                    • tracey

                      Except the CTU dont get half the media exposure farrar et al get

                    • Babayaga

                      Neither should they. They are virtually irrelevant.

                    • Incognito

                      You said:

                      They are virtually irrelevant.

                      I raise you:

                      The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions Te Kauae Kaimahi brings together over 320,000 New Zealand union members in 31 affiliated unions. We are the united voice for working people and their families in New Zealand.


                      You were saying?

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “You were saying?”

                      That they are irrelevant. That you have to cite from a union mouthpiece is a case in point. As is the fact that workers have votes with their feet over many, many years.

                    • Incognito

                      Well, I called your bluff and you lost, badly! You must be badly suffering from dyscalculia; Joyce was no good with big numbers either but at least he had evidence of his lack of economic nous.

                      In any case, I did not cite; I provided information about the CTU membership with a link for your convenience. You’re welcome, BTW.

                      I did count 20 pathetic comments of yours so far under this Post, which is pretty impressive for an irrelevant bunch (i.e. CTU) representing over 320,000 irrelevant NZ workers commissioning an irrelevant poll conducted by an irrelevant polling company to inform an irrelevant Tax Working Group on an irrelevant subject.

                      If it is all so irrelevant to you why do you bother commenting here in your pathetic manner?

                    • Ed

                      Are you a member of Williams’s taxpayer union?

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “Well, I called your bluff and you lost, badly! ”
                      No, you used a union mouthpiece to try to make out unions are still relevant. Unions can prove their relevance by stopping the exodus of members. They have failed.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “Are you a member of Williams’s taxpayer union?”
                      No, but I like a lot of what they do. Keep the bastards honest, particularly when it’s Labour or Labour Mayors.

                    • Incognito

                      Hmmm, over 320,000 “union mouthpieces” vs. one pathetic little RWNJ roar squeak called BY.

                      Time to call and you lose again.

                      Oh my, it certainly does feel like Groundhog Day 😉

                    • Baba Yaga

                      What is the total work force of NZ, and what % of that work force are in unions? There’s your answer. They are largely irrelevant.

          • Gosman

            How is the question asked in any way not biased towards higher taxes?

            • You_Fool

              How do you know what the questions were?

                • Anon

                  Yeah but they’re not even questions, especially with that poor grammar.

                  • JM

                    And if that’s the case why are media outlets running with the alamist pro-tax headlines? Doesn’t this make it………propaganda.

                    • Anon

                      They’re just parroting the CTUs press release as far as I can tell. Sadly I don’t expect much better from media these days.

                • MikeS

                  Shame they didn’t get the Tobin tax quite right It’s supposed to be a very low percentage (0.1% or less) tax on high volume financial transactions, not on all financial transactions.

                  So the average person won’t be affected, but a tiny tax can become large amounts of revenue for the government when it is applied to things like multi million dollar currency speculation transactions, etc.

                  Those moaning about the questions are being disingenuous. Government revenue comes mainly from income tax. If you want to increase public services then you have to spend more money which means you need t collect more taxes. This is what happens when public services have been underfunded for years.

                  As costs for everything go up year by year then obviously you have to increase taxes (if larger tax base doesn’t produce enough funding) to maintain public services at current levels.

                  If wage growth had happened as profits increased over the last 40 years then government income would be much higher and tax increases might not be necessary. Greedy business owners (shareholders) and executives are to blame, so they should be taxed…..hard.

                  • Anon

                    “As costs for everything go up year by year then obviously you have to increase taxes (if larger tax base doesn’t produce enough funding) to maintain public services at current levels.”

                    See, if this is true, then eventually we’d have to have a 100% tax rate.

      • mickysavage 2.1.3

        Indiana it is the Taxpayers Union.

        RWNJs have been given the message question the questions without knowing what the questions are!

        • JM

          The RWNJ’s looked for the questions…you just looked for…the headline.


          • Pat

            Well the RWNJ’s will be somewhat concerned about what those questions and responses indicate…..the only saving grace for the bathtub brigade is the sample size.

            • JM

              “Well the RWNJ’s will be somewhat concerned about what those questions”

              Probably because the suggestive language used in the survey was overloaded with LW-progressive-bias to form a false narrative of “most kiwis”.

              The reality is “most kiwis” see the wood for the trees and hate being led down the garden path.

              • Pat

                If “most kiwis” see the wood for the trees and hate being led down the garden path whats the explanation for a 2:1 ratio (minimum) in favour of an increased tax take then?…..surely the respondents wernt ‘taken in’ by the ‘LW progressive-bias’ of the questions?…

                i.e..”Do you agree or disagree that overall public services like hospitals, schools and the transport system are in need of increased government funding?”

                ….very devious and confusing that, innit?

          • Draco T Bastard

            You obviously didn’t read the link you posted.

        • indiana

          …and is the LWNJs message to question the polling company? The reality is that this poll is aimed at softening the public reaction to higher taxes, be it from income tax, new taxes or increasing existing consumption taxes. This poll never asked about making tax neutral changes.

          Australia have announced income tax reductions, and the Labour opposition responded by say they would reduce income tax by more than what was announced!

          • Louis

            New Zealand is not Australia.

          • Draco T Bastard

            The reality is that this poll is aimed at softening the public reaction to higher taxes

            Doesn’t appear to be that way. It appears that the polling company asked the people what they wanted and reported that.

            That just happens to be different from what you believe that the people want and so you’re upset about it.

            • Gosman

              You really think that do you? The way the questions were phrased I’m surprised they had anyone disagreeing with higher taxes.

            • Herodotus

              Really, the poll asked people what they wanted ???
              Not sure how you you can honestly make that statement.

              The polling company prepared questions (that I cannot see any link to the list of questions, only the outcome report) so in the framing of how a question is raised they also frame the outcomes.
              “92% of New Zealanders agree (totally agree + somewhat agree) that public services are in need of increased government funding.” What info. was given to inform the respondents that “public services are in need …”
              or that “Almost two thirds (65%) said the government should increase tax to at least maintain public services at their current levels ” So is there pressure to maintain public services that current taxation policies will not meet? I don’t know how were the respondents prepared to be able to make an informed response ??

      • Louis 2.1.4

        Take anything Farrar’s Taxpayers union says with a large dose of salt, it’s an arm of the National Party.

  3. Stunned Mullet 3

    Poll of people says ‘tax those other people who earn more than me some more please, but don’t increase my taxes or I’ll kill you.

    • cleangreen 3.1

      National were increasing taxes on everything they could as they allowed increased Electricity prices cigarettes,alcohol, and many many other such as increasing fuel and GST to 15%!!!!!

      So yes we think labour now need to balance the books by charging the richer of us more as they can afford to pay but the poor are now strapped.

      Time to pay the piper time is here.

  4. JM 4

    “A scientifically conducted poll”

    Ahahahahahahahahahahaha don’t make me laugh.

    Oh, too late.

    • Anne 4.1

      Gosman, Indiana, Baba Yaga and you would no doubt regard a poll conducted by Cameron Slater as having a good track record.

      • JM 4.1.1


      • Gosman 4.1.2

        No. I would NEVER promote a poll by that fool.

      • cleangreen 4.1.3

        Yes Anne; – the trolls have been let out on the town today haven’t they just?

        • lprent

          Just an observation, the original Pratchett trolls hard issues with sunlight.

          The typical RWNJ troll has a similar problem with taxes. In fact they have a problem with paying for anything apart from toys to compensate for their lower brain size.

          But they are also noticeable for their demand for subsidies like roads for their dick compensatory devices. And they don’t expect to have to pay for them. Just look at the Road Transport lobby group that Ken Shirley runs for a prime example of how it works. They want other taxpayers and road users to pay for their axle weights destroying roads.

          Of course the other characteristic is that you typical RWNJ troll can’t take criticism of a joke directed at them. They have hysterical fits of calling it unfair…. Look at Cameron Slater for the prime example.

  5. savenz 5

    Any move on income taxes is mostly a waste of time as so many wealthy people live here or have permanent residency here but don’t live here or work here but still get to have ‘free’ health, education, ACC, policing, super, etc etc when they deem to come into NZ. This can’t go on.

    At the same time so many people have been encouraged to have companies and trusts for a range of reasons not related to tax avoidance (although looking at the Panama papers types enquiries show that NZ is becoming a great place to hide or divert money) and this can be used to reduce income taxes.

    Due to the whole student loan debacle form the 1990’s we have become a country that seems to be repelling educated NZer’s and forcing them overseas to work to pay off debts while encouraging ‘skilled’ workers with no degrees at all who apparently can be chefs, Burger King mangers and retail staff. While these are valid and hard working professions – becoming a nation of shop keepers and cheap restaurants while repelling all our experienced doctors, nurses, IT staff and entrepreneurs is leading to a massive drop in productivity.

    It seems weird to expect Kiwi taxpayers to pay the first year of study for an aspiring level 5 IT worker while taxing more of someone who has decades of NZ experience in IT for example and thinking they are ‘rich’ on $70k – especially when companies in NZ spend their entire careers on reducing wages and valuing cheap over value for money. Dream on if you think we are still going to be a viable social democracy in another decade, instead we will have become like the Phillipines!

    The rise in ‘working poor’ is due to low wages and our rip of culture here which for example has now made a 1 bedroom Kiwibuild house that is ‘affordable’ cost $550k. Four years ago in Auckland you could get a freehold studio apartment for $160k and buy a 3 bedroom starter home for $350,000! It’s nothing to do with the taxes because taxes have not changed in that time (apart from John Keys 0% tax havens and the gift duty drop so that people can launder money much more easily). It’s the immigration drive that is doing it while jacking up the prices with poor workmanship and high prices because it’s not about hiring a skilled worker anymore, it’s about bumping up profits anyway possible.

    Like the IT example, construction is the same, we have become stupid and lazy as a country and employers have been enabled to screw our own industry and workers and students and then bring in unskilled or fake workers to do construction.

    At the same time large and bureaucratic companies have got more and more power and are able to take the contracts such as in CHCH. Many tradies moved there for work only to lose money as the insurance held up everyones claims for years. By the time they were allowed to go ahead (sometimes taking years) they were jumping up and down they couldn’t get anybody – Doh – most firms can’t wait a year without any work and survive!

    The majority of these jobs are a rout from employment firms for residency and putting more mark ups and complexity into NZ that has too many unskilled and fake subcontractors working at low wages contributing to large remedial costs and mark ups by the profiteers and now mean that a one bed apartment is $550k, tripling in 4 years with all the routs!

    Stop the routs and employ Kiwis and only bring in workers on $100k Plus so at least they have hopefully a real skill to offer and the job is valid!

    At the same time try to lure skilled Kiwis back and keep them here with higher wages and decent conditions.

    Even the low paid work like apple picking, who is going to go down pay a fortune for accomodation for 3 weeks work! Before all the immigration this was work for local people who seemed to be able to milk the cows and pick the apples in the old days without somehow flying in slave labourers, while Kiwis are on the dole. It’s works out better to be on the dole than take these crap jobs that have become crapper and crapper over the years so now they are reliant on slave labour and routs to keep their businesses going!

    That’s not even getting into the ‘free water’ and non existent pollution controls that have not been addressed.

    Bring in a Tobin tax so at least we can extract a few pennies from all the free loaders.

    • savenz 5.1

      Also in many cases it is not the primary producers fault aka the farmers and horticulturalists, the rise in supermarket cost cutting and driving down the prices of raw commodities and putting in more and more onerous conditions, while ensuring farm sizes are bigger, has created a system where they can only stay in business by employing slave labourers or bonded type workers.

  6. You_Fool 6

    Does anyone have a non-biased link to confirmation of the poll questions? what has been posted above seem to be from a Tax Payers Union press release, and how they know is not clear, and I would trust them to speak the truth about as much as I trust Trump not to tweet for 24hrs

    In addition the herald article seem to indicate that more than questions were asked that showed the same leanings towards increased tax and more spending on core services

    • Gosman 6.1

      Looks like UMR employs the same tech people as the Standard 🙂

      • Anon 6.1.1


      • mickysavage 6.1.2

        Fuck Gosman that is cheap.

        Do you know that TS survives on a pitiful amount of money each month and does not need advertising. It is a tribute to the dedication of well meaning individuals. There is no commercial aspect to it, no hunting for advertising dollars, just the well intentioned scribbling of some dedicated individuals.

        I thought you guys were into this, minimal cost and no reliance on the state?

        • Anne

          Yes, that was cheap and nasty. I wonder if Gosman is big enough to apologise?

          I donated today. Just a small amount because I can’t afford any more. Maybe others could do likewise.

        • Gosman

          And I thought you guys could take a gentle ribbing.

          • In Vino

            Bullshit. No gentle ribbing – your usual caustic attack, but when you got called out for being in the wrong, you resorted to bullshit pretence of ‘ribbing’.
            So are all your submissions on TS ‘ribbing’?

    • JM 6.2

      From the horse’s mouth.


      The pro-tax headlines are based off the Public Service maintenance question:

      Some experts like the Tax Working Group have concluded that to maintain the same level of public services that New Zealand currently has into the future, the overall amount of tax that the government collect needs to increase.
      Which one of the following statements is closest to what you think, even if not exact?

      a) the government should increase tax to at least maintain public services at their current levels into the future, or,

      b) tax collected should stay the same while reducing public services.

      • savenz 6.2.1

        Stupid closed world thinking and questions. They should have kept it open and asked ‘why do you think we need more money’ and ‘How do you think the money should be raised’ and see what people really think and actually listen to what people think.

        For a start the Natz kept the Ponzi going, by increasing debt and so are the councils, not even an option in the questions, but clearly already in common usage by our government officials!

        Nothing about fake accounting by using PPP’s… costs massively more and never delivers apart from increasing risk and complexity, but great for the sound byte and financial people and large construction firms love the profits …

        That could also look at things like reducing lazy immigration because clearly what they are doing is not working out if the government needs so much more money and public services are being reduced for it, taxing those who are not tax resident in NZ but hold assets here, how to combat the billion dollar turnover company that earns zero profit… etc etc… (For a start higher wages would help or the Tobin tax!)

        Bigger fines for employment or consumer fraud by companies or organisations rather than a weak shake of the head (on the other side, employee fraud is a jail term)…. etc etc

      • mickysavage 6.2.2

        And the bias is where? To be honest the logic in the questions is overwhelming.

        • Enough is Enough

          The questions infer that:

          1. An increase in taxes is required for public services to be maintained at the level they are today; and

          2. Public Services will run down if taxes do not increase.

          Unless you want public services to be run down (which other than the 1%, no one does) you can only answer CTUs question one way

        • Gosman

          Stop for a moment thinking with your ideological blinkers on MS. I would have answered in the affirmative if I had been asked those questions. If a dyed in the wool rightist would have answered yes to higher taxes don’t you think that might mean the questions may have been phrased in a biased way?

          • MikeS

            Gosman. you sound like you think there should be another option? You’ve stated that you would have answered in the affirmative so you want increased spending on public services.

            Increased spending on public services requires increased tax revenue. If not higher taxes then how does the government get the increased revenue required?

          • mickysavage

            The reality is:

            1. An increase in taxes is required for public services to be maintained at the level they are today; and

            2. Public Services will run down if taxes do not increase.

            There is no magic money tree. Middlemore reports show what is happening. Our nation is descending into a mire because we had a bunch of cost accountants rule it for the past nine years.

            • Gosman

              That is merely your opinion MS. It is debatable whether it is reality. That is why the questions were biased and the survey results are next to useless.

            • Tuppence Shrewsbury

              No an increase in the tax take is what’s needed. Not “taxes”

              the best way to increase revenue is encourage more people to shop with you. This government is doing the complete opposite so wants to charge some people more. See how well that goes over an extended period

          • Stuart Munro

            Nothing biased about it Gossie my boy – there is no alternative. Ring a bell?

  7. savenz 7

    Also at the same time you have very sophisticated MSM and the rise of the paid for content as well as the Cambridge Analytica type firms creating individual realities which has meant government policies, experts and the so called polls are not not worth anything.

    Spinoff is a case in point, where the whole purpose of journalism is to support the advertisers interests such as the construction industry routs with article after article asking for more ‘skilled workers’ – how can you call a worker skilled on $20p/h? It’s at the minimum level of living wage.

    Now there is even lobbying to give work to illegal workers bought in by firms who profit from the scam. Here is a thought, give the employment firm a huge fine, might bring in tax dollars, rather than saying, good one, bring in illegal workers who apparently don’t take up housing or ever need health care, or have any children, on top of all the rest of the problems in our social systems of rising prison numbers and people who slip through the system.

  8. David Mac 8

    We are free to pay more tax than we are legally due to pay. Just transfer it to the IRD.

    Those that support paying more tax need only do so, it’s easy.

    Those that are waiting to be legally bound to pay more tax don’t support paying more tax or they would. They support not breaking the law.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      And all that does is support more bludging.

      • Bewildered 8.1.1

        Do you work Draco or are you a bludger, live off others re black and white definition of the word If so are you grateful for those that do work and give you means By default a rich person does not bludge as lives off his own means, the question how much he deserves for those means is subjective to individual opinion ( from kill the rich, jealousy to respect for achievement ) but irrelevant in market based society as long as means are legal, definitely not bludging though

        • Draco T Bastard

          Do you work Draco or are you a bludger, live off others re black and white definition of the word If so are you grateful for those that do work and give you means By default a rich person does not bludge as lives off his own means,

          A rich person does nothing but bludge. They do not live off their own means but by the means of others work. That’s what interest and dividends are – the result of others work being given to those who haven’t done anything for it.

          People who are unemployed, on the other hand, are unemployed because the rich don’t want to employ them because then wages will increase and thus decrease their bludging. These people need support not because of their own choices but because of the choices of the government as they support rich people’s desire to wages down.

          • David Mac

            I’d be concerned about consigning myself to a life of self appointed victim driven poverty if I chose to see the world like that Draco. I like Rarotonga and boats too much to join you. I think what matters is the contribution that each of us make to the society that supports us. The degree of tax that some of us might pay is a small part of that contribution.

            I think what matters, regardless of our station in life is our answer to the question: What did you do for NZ last week?

            When approached holistically, a part answer to that question may be: I got a 4 year old a little bit closer to grasping the alphabet before they start school.

    • MikeS 8.2

      No we aren’t. IRD wont accept tax payments unless accompanied by the correct paperwork showing how much is owed. They won’t accept more than what is owed.

  9. Anon 9

    Hmm why do the elderly want higher taxes? Could it be they already have wealth (house, car) and want the young to pay for their pension? And what will happen to the young when they’re old, now that wealth is exponentially harder to accumulate?

    And what even is meant by tax staying the same? At the same tax rate tax take still increases as population expands – assuming a constant rate of employment. Which means funding should be able to scale even at the same rate, rather than failing down.

    So yeah, the question asks about a misleadingly non-realistic scenario.

    • McFlock 9.1

      Except that 90% of respondents also think essential public services need more money.

      And your assumption that an x% increase in population corresponds to an x% increase in tax take (immediate or lagged) without an >x% increase in demand for public services is pretty bold.

      • Herodotus 9.1.1

        Remember for everyone earning over the $17k 1st tax threshold, is every year paying more tax as a % of their income than the year before 🤑.and that is not taking into consideration increase gst on CPI increases . So yeah we are paying ever more in tax already.even if the govt had promised no tax increases, they conviently forget about tax creep.

        • McFlock

          While my heart bleeds for those poor people on over $70k, none of those points are relevant to my statement.

          • Herodotus

            To make things more understandable to you. My comment had NOTHING to do with anyone over $70k, it related to anyone earning over $14k (my error when I mention 17k), as they then go into the next tax bracket and as a % on income they pay a higher % of tax..
            For you as I gather the comment went over your head
            you earn $14k tax is $1,470 or 10.5%
            you get an increase as per CIP of 2%
            New income $14,280 tax is $1,519 or 10.63%
            Comprehendeeeee ??? I hope so
            So govt receives more tax and if the worker is on WFF or other entitlements they could reduce as income increase. The Govt wins both ways more $$ and pays out less = more the spend on other govt services 🙂

            • McFlock

              true, had a wee number-tumbling moment in me noggin. Read 17 as 71.

              It could have been 7, or 1. It’s still irrelevant to the question as to whether leaving things as they are and hoping that population increase and bracket creep will somehow magically undo three decades of intentional underfunding.

              • tracey


                I notice that many govts say they have put more money into something when sometimes that is not enough to meet the increased cost of stuff. All govts do this and it annoys me

            • MikeS

              You’re assuming wages are increasing each year. Many low income earners haven’t had a pay rise for years.

              • tracey

                MikeS exactly. Something few want to genuinely discuss/address in our political world. We know growth in GDP alone cannot be the answer

      • savenz 9.1.2

        McFlock – that is what we have been told for the last few decades by government we need more migrants into NZ to help support the Kiwi oldies as we have a static population. It now looks like we would have been better off investing in our own, Maori for example or our youth, because for some reason it’s turned out the other way, we need more taxes from Kiwi’s because now not just the Kiwi oldies to look after, it’s the low paid workers, the migrants aged parents and the amount of people who seem to just get residency and not actually planning to live here, but legally allowed to claim free health care, etc…. such as Peter Thiel types. His citizenship has already cost the opportunity for a Kiwi taxpayer to benefit from his sweetheart deal… and we hear that Queenstown now needs exemptions because mansions of 30 million are so plentiful down there if foreigner’s can’t buy them, who will, and they also need exemptions for bonded labour migrants because nobody can afford to live there on low wages… do we want that spreading… Auckland a basket case already for all public services, now the rots spreading to Wellington they seem to be more interested in the problem.

        In many cases it is nothing to do with the migrants either, it’s third party immigration people who are profiting from selling them a lie to come here. I’m not suggesting shutting NZ off aka Trump style but clearly when the top 5 skilled entry point to NZ involve minimum or close to minimum wages, and a large amount of migrants on $90k+ apparently ‘abandon’ their parents onto the state, warning bells should be ringing both on why people are coming into NZ in the last few years and their moral state of mind!

        All helps the right, because as the left starts to put up the taxes, guess what the working population not benefiting or actually having their wages lowered by fake competition, don’t want to keep paying for government folly, especially when so many people on no incomes in NZ seem very well off, because it is a problem that has deliberately been created and NZ is not an even playing field any longer.

        • McFlock

          Working-age migrants are the closest we get to an increase in population having a corresponding increase in tax revenue – babies don’t make anything for decades, and older people are consumers more than producers.

      • Gosman 9.1.3

        Essential services can get more money WITHOUT the need for tax increases.

        Maybe a more pertinent question would have been “Do you support giving more government funding to Health and Welfare or to students from Middle and Upper Income families for Tertiary education?”

        • Enough is Enough

          As we will see in next week’s budget essential service are getting more money without any tax increases.

          • Gosman

            Excellent so why the need to phrase the question the way it was phrased?

            • Enough is Enough

              I have no idea.

              It has destroyed the credibility of the CTU’s submission

              • McFlock

                Because “more money” still doesn’t necessarily mean “enough money”.

                • Enough is Enough

                  There is never “enough money”

                  • McFlock

                    Actually, like any value integer, there can be. It just depends how wide a reasonable person would want the margin for error to be.

                    For example, I’d posit that the routine existence of homelessness, or kids going to school without food or proper clothing because of financial difficulties in the home, strongly suggests that the level of funding for social services addressing those problems does not meet a reasonable estimation of “enough”.

                    The same can be applied to any service: if its basic objectives should be fulfilled but are patently unfulfilled and a reasonable amount of additional funds would enable those objectives to be achieved, then those additional funds would be “enough money”. On the flipside, if all the objectives that have been identified as reasonable have been achieved, then the service does not need more money. It has “enough money”.

                    But if an unreasonable level of perfection is required then “enough money” becomes overwhelmed by diminishing returns and might actually cause more harm than good.

        • McFlock

          Tertiary education is an essential service. That’s why we’re short of folks from doctors to plumbers and builders. Because we haven’t properly funded education for decades.

          • indiana

            …and yet many of these qualified people are in NZ as UBER drivers because NZ won’t recognise their qualifications from overseas. Immigration did, so that they could enter NZ a highly skilled migrant.

            • McFlock

              Yeah, insisting qualifications be genuine and according to the NZ standard is a bugger, ain’t it. Would you want your brain surgeon to be unaccredited in NZ?

              Your tenants’ plumber, maybe you’d be cool with that. What about the plumber doing your en suite?

        • tracey

          Or do you support giving enough money…

          More money isnt always enough money

  10. savenz 10

    exactly…”the same tax rate tax take still increases as population expands – assuming a constant rate of employment. Which means funding should be able to scale even at the same rate, rather than failing down”

    .. that is where the low wage economy is coming into it… NZ seems to be getting poorer, increasing our share of people who need income support for their Low wage but ‘skilled’ job and their future families, while the idea seems to be to take from those existing workers that have not yet retired but are experienced workers who are already often paid way under the going rate for their skills and experience… and NOT getting the community services card, gold card, rates and school donations help, the WFF, the accomodation supplement, food parcels, that our low wage economy demands is needed by more and more people…. to help those poor restaurants and construction companies and farms keep making their profits…

  11. Herodotus 11

    A majority of New Zealanders say they would support higher or new taxes to maintain funding for schools, hospitals and transport systems, according to polling by trade unions.
    Why do we accept the basis that we need to spend more just to maintain the existing ?
    Perhaps if govts didn’t waste money in buying votes to plaster over major issues that we face NZ.
    We have a housing problem, whats the solution ? Throw more money at the problem. Be it accomodation subsidies or student allowances. Allow degradation of the environment Govt steps up to fund.
    Leaky houses/schools/hospitals why should the tax payer pay the cost of the remedials.
    If as we are told NZ economy is growing should not the tax base also increase, keeping pace ?
    No its the cost we incur as tax payers paying for bribes parties give to govern.

  12. Philg 12

    Government by poll, survey and opinion ‘journalism ‘ has become an unfortunate reality in the MSM. Too many folks in PR and too few real investigative journalists or impartial academics in the media. When did you last hear a non bank/finance sector sponsored economist in our media?

  13. mac1 13

    Has anybody read “Viking Economics” by George Lakey? I read it last year and from memory it argued that the Viking economies of Scandinavia welcomed high taxation as through their history of collective organisations and political history in general they learnt that the benefits outweighed the personal cost. They, high earners and all, appreciated having free education, a top class health system, and an economy that facilitated employers and workers alike.

    Since I read it, a new edition has been published with an afterward answering discussion points raised since the first edition.

    Kiwis who support higher taxation as per this poll very possible have similar beliefs.

    What I’d like to see is business, farmer and employer related leaders looking at Lakey’s ideas as he makes avery strong case for “Viking Economics” which do not depend upon pillage and plunder but upon a strong collective and socially connected sense of nation and community.

    • indiana 13.1

      What product do those Viking Economies export the most? Does this product that is exported, contribute to the total revenue generation of these economies or do these economies only rely on the income tax of their workers?

      • mac1 13.1.1

        The countries in particular are Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

        What is the major export earner for them would have to be researched.

        I’m off for a well-earned beer having just introduced two students to the intricacies of diminished chords and the song “Nobody Know You When You are Down and Out” which is apposite for our times.

        • indiana

          Enjoy your beer…but just for Norway only:

          • mac1

            The best I can do is to offer this as a relevant part of a review of Lakey’s book by a London University professor of economics. Re Norway.

            “After a history of very difficult industrial relations, the country came to a settlement between unions and business in the 1930s that has, broadly, and with the Quisling era a disruption, survived to date. As a result, business is seen not as being in opposition to the social model but rather as a part of it. This is evidenced by the fact that the state quite positively encourages people to set up their own businesses. Among Lakey’s more surprising statistics are those on entrepreneurship, where Scandinavian rates exceed those of the US. His explanation of this is, to me, and based on my experience as a one-time practising chartered accountant, very obviously correct: Scandinavians can afford the uncertainty of starting a business because the risk of ill health, old age, education for their children and even, to some degree, failure is accepted by society as part of the bargain made for the gains the business will deliver, which it will settle by way of tax paid and opportunity provided. No UK graduate now has the security to take risk in that way. No wonder the Scandinavians can win.”

            • David Mac

              Norway is easy – from pauper to rich uncle in a few decades on the back of North Sea oil.

              The others, first of all, they’ve been trying to get it right for 100’s of years longer than us. The coastal Swedish village I lived in got it’s start in 1700. The rocks around Oregrund (Iron Rock) were rusty, loaded with ore. They loaded them in ships that sailed to Sheffield in England. The village had a history of twice being burned to the ground, Russians raiding across the Baltic.

              The Swedes work like demons, it was an awakening for me. Yes they feed the kids up to 3 meals a day at school, that’s so Mums and Dads can start and finish work at 7.

              Things have changed there this century. Social services etc have been slowly stripped back, no longer affordable. EU membership, the influx of foreigners and refugees that have grown up hungry are weighing heavy on their infrastructure.

              On the world stage we pitch the All Blacks, Zespri, Fonterra and 100% Pure.

              The worker ant Swedes have many international sweetheart brands. Volvo, Spotify, Husqvarna, Astra Zenneca, Ikea, H & M, Sandvik, ABB, Swedish Match, Saab Grippen, Atlas Copco, Skype.

              When I was living there in the early 2000’s bus drivers drove new cars. Grandparents took the grandies to Disneyland on the State pension. This is no longer the case.

  14. tracey 14

    The good news is that from now on we will see full and frank disclosure of all questions and methodologies for all polls ever published from now on. Win for all of us.

  15. tracey 15

    I thought of the following article while reading this thread and something I read a while ago on Formation of Mens Attitudes by Jaques Ellul.


  16. Paul Campbell 16

    Top tax rate in Australia is 45% PLUS a 5% state payroll tax (pays for schools, police, etc one has to compare apples with apples).

    However our real tax inequality is that people who labour spend their whole lives doing back breaking work pay tax on every dollar they earn, while trust fund kids who live off capital gains don’t pay a cent.

    Here’s what I want to see happen:

    1) undo National’s “revenue neutral” reducing of the top marginal rate while increasing GST, Key claimed it wasn’t going to effect anyone effectively transferring a giant chunk of tax from the very rich to the poorest of the poor. If Key was right, and it really is revenue neutral none of his worshipers will complain – in reality it will increase the top marginal rate on those who can afford it

    2a) a capital gains tax at your marginal rate on all income, with:
    2b) no capital gains tax on the family home if you sell it and buy something of the same value, or more within 18 months, the tax liability rolls over into the new home
    2c) no capital gains tax on the family home one time during your life if you sell it and buy something much cheaper (that’s the kids are gone and we’re pairing down exemption, it frees up larger housing for families)
    2d) long term capital gains in local companies of more than 2 years are taxed at the least of some lower than high marginal rate, say 25% and your own marginal rate – this is what most countries think of when you say “capital gains tax” – a LOWER tax rate rate to encourage investment in local business
    2e) convert kiwisaver schemes so that money paid into them is pre-tax, so you pay your tax (much of which is going to be capital gains) when you take it out, along with the tax on any increase – likely you will pay that tax at a lower marginal rate when you are retired

    I did my OE in the US from the 80s until the 00s 2a-e) is essentially the capital gains tax regime there, 2e is called a “401K”

  17. cleangreen 17

    lesson for the right wing folks who are not aware that the National Party viciously taxed the hell out of us and for initiatives to enable private investors to profit at taxpayers’ expense.

    Of course National placed yet another tax on Government building projects with a 6% tax on costs to build those assets and buildings it was explained in a discussion on RNZ today.

    Read this excellent tax article here.


    • The irony of this is that New Zealand is already one of the lowest-taxed countries in the developed world:

    • Personal income tax rates on average are the third lowest in the OECD

    • New Zealand charges less tax on high income earners than virtually any comparable country. Our 33% top tax rate is far below the OECD average of 42%, let alone Australia’s 49%. It is therefore one of the least effective at redistributing income to reduce inequalities.

    You might think that the transfer of key assets from public to private hands finished with the Government’s flogging-off of Genesis shares earlier this year. You would be wrong. National is planning a whole new raft of initiatives to enable private investors to profit at taxpayers’ expense.

    • Charter school promoters are queuing up to collect tens of millions of taxpayer dollars diverted from the already-under-resourced public school system

    • Private-Public Partnerships are still being considered for new hospital buildings

    • Contracting-out of services formerly provided within the public sector is roaring ahead

    This creeping “privatisation by stealth” is just as big a threat to the quality, integrity and cost of public services as the more open, barefaced looting of the public estate by private speculators, finance-sector operators and corporate opportunists during the great privatisation drives of 1988-1999 and 2010-2014.

    The National Government’s determination to push ahead with selling off state-owned assets in the past three years has been driven by two things:

    • pure ideology (a distaste for government enterprises in general, combined with a blinkered vision of the purposes for which they exist), and

    • powerful vested interests in the financial and investment community with close ties to the National Party.

    The vested-interest pressure comes from those who organise the sales (collecting fees and bonuses along the way) and from those who hope to turn a quick profit at the taxpayers’ expense by buying shares cheaply and then selling them off on a rising market. Neither of these groups has any interest in the public good. Both are motivated by private greed.

    • Paul Campbell 17.1

      yes, our taxes a very low by 1st world standards, I pay more than 10% less at the high marginal rate here in NZ than I paid in in the US – again you have to include state taxes to compare apples with apples

  18. Steve Alfreds 18

    They could have included a third option for National and ACT:

    C) Should the government cut taxes and sell-off all remaining state assets so we can live in a free market nirvana?

    We have to pay for the country’s services and infrastructure somehow and taxation is a vital source of Crown revenue. The last government was so obsessed with returning surpluses and not increases taxes that it failed to maintain key infrastructure and services.

  19. dv 19


    Watson being chased by IRD for 60million

    The restructuring saw a complex chain of loans and share transfers between entities – with Watson making $291m in loans to Cullen Group to enable the sale of his Cullen Investments shares, then assigning these loans to two Cayman Island companies – that Inland Revenue alleges served no purpose except to avoid paying $59.5m in tax.

  20. CHCOff 20

    There are two facets:

    1) A shared life quality as relates to basic standards across the population in housing and quality of life outcomes.

    2) Enough widespread purchasing power distributed throughout the population to ensure the Economic System is being calibrated to a ‘living’ value system totality, to ensure it’s allocative and creative powers are and remain adaptive and relevant (meaning not wasteful & inefficient).

    Nationalisation (via specific industry expertise) tilting the fields towards favoring the small business operators, via market related commisions, in the Speculative driven areas of different industries. That would double whammy production chain value corrections and also, as speculative value essentially produces no wealth but money, economic sustainability value into the business cycles.

  21. The Chairman 21

    As they tend to be less progressive taxes, one wonders how voters will feel about enabling legislation that would allow councils nationwide to levy their own taxes such as fuel taxes, land value capture and tolling?

    “The CTU’s polling on income taxes is notable because Government has already ruled them outside of the tax working group’s terms of reference”

    And therein lies the problem.

    Income tax, which is progressive and has public support isn’t even being considered by the tax working group while regressive taxes are.

    Considering Labour are going to go into an election with their tax policy, why would they rule out taking into account a progressive and clearly popular tax option?

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