The National Party are once again trying to make political capital over the Trans-Tasman wage gap, even though they created it in the first place and have no policy to fix it. Like I’ve pointed out a dozen times before:
1. Yes, we have a wage gap with Australia and it needs to close.
2. The wage gap we have now opened up by 50% under the last National government due to their neoliberal employment relations policies. When you take rights off workers their wages fall, and under National most Kiwis’ incomes did fall.
3. Under Labour’s Employment Relations Act the harsher edges of those policies have been removed and wages have started to rise again. The gap with Australia has remained static. More needs to be done, but those are the facts.
4. National has no policy to lift wages. The only policy it does have on wages is to take rights off workers, which as we saw in the 1990s will only see downward pressure on wages and a further widening of the wage gap with Australia.
5. Cutting taxes will not lift wages, it will only reduce the tax people pay on them. In any case, to close the gap with Australia, National would have to abolish income tax. And that’s not going to happen, even in their wildest dreams.
In short, yet another hollow, discredited attack from a party that has no credibility on wages.