Nats continue to have a quid each way on tax cuts

Written By: - Date published: 11:39 am, December 11th, 2016 - 15 comments
Categories: bill english, national, spin, Steven Joyce, tax - Tags: , , , ,

Key was always pushing tax cuts, English was always cautious. Was it incoherence or was it a deliberate cop bad cop routine? Either way we seem set to continue with this sort of nonsense. English remains realistic – Bill English gives financial update, says reducing debt and earthquake recovery more important than tax cuts

English himself remained cagey about the chances of any tax changes, saying they would only take place if “economic and fiscal conditions allow”, while there were higher priorities.

“We need to absorb the impact of the Kaikoura earthquake…and we’ve got to focus on paying down debt, so that sets constraints on other choices.”

There was no “explicit provision” for tax cuts, but the Government would consider its options for Budget 2017 or later as the financial situation continued to improve.

The impact of the the Kaikoura earthquake is not yet known, and paying down debt is going to take years, by his own logic English cannot be offering tax cuts in 2017. His position last year was unequivocal – English rules out tax cuts this year and next.

But Joyce has taken over the role pusher – ‘The money we get comes from hardworking Kiwis’ – Steven Joyce says tax cuts remain in ‘the mix’ under Bill English Govt.

The presumptive Finance Minister is not ruling out tax cuts going into election year.

Incoherence? Flip-flops? Left hand doesn’t know the right hand? Deliberate strategy? Imagine the media field-day if there was this kind of confusion at the heart of Labour’s economic policy.

Key got away with this kind of bullshit for 8 long years – are we going to let it continue?

15 comments on “Nats continue to have a quid each way on tax cuts”

  1. red-blooded 1

    There’s no way we should be talking tax cuts while they still haven’t restarted payments into the government super fund.

    Joyce is the master of spin and his first priority is quite simple: to win the election. I see a cut coming…

  2. Grey Area 2

    “Key got away with this kind of bullshit for 8 long years – are we going to let it continue?”

    Hopefully Key’s spell has been broken. Some of us have had an equivalent of Harry Potter’s cloak of invisibility but in our case it shielded us from the flood of National Party BS. Others will shrug off the soporific effects of the spell and wake to a bright new world awash in possibilities such as rebuilding a nation based on fairness and integrity that we can be proud of once again rather than a tax haven with embarassing statistics for inequality, poverty, homelessness, etc. Others never needed the spell.

    Joyce got one thing right – the money the government spends comes from hardworking NZers as it always does. So by his “reasoning” National keeps holding out the carrot of tax cuts, along with repaying debt, infrastructure investment …….

    The rather large elephant in the room is tax evasion and avoidance. When that gets addressed I might start to give any credence to a National Party bullshitter like Joyce. Not going to happen though is it?

    In answer to the multi-choice question: Cynical deliberate strategy.

    • michelle 2.1

      If we have so much surplus why are they letting people suffer unnecessary the surplus has come at too high a costs to many NZers. This is not good enough we have big ACC problems ( John Miller taking our govt to court and winning)), mental health is in a mess( young kids being taken from schools and of the side of the road) , public health services run down and not coping with the numbers, Winz shooting and other issues, Police cuts with lots of unsolved burglaries, selling HNZ and other assets to prop up education and health but both areas still under funded and still not good enough for the taxes we pay, far too much Immigration them bringing in unskilled cheap labour to keep the business masters happy. All this and more under Bill English and now he is talking about social services and I heard Collins mention the word poverty ( probably to help with her pm bid ) really these bastards caused and created the mess we are in. And all this now they are trying to say they are going to do this and that well really do you really believe these people when they have lied, bullshitted and bullied us for 8 years.
      ps. where is our Saudi trade deal we spent 11.5 million of our taxes on?

  3. paul andersen 3

    right wing politicians being morally ambivalent ?? shocked!! there target audience stupid/greedy enough to fall for it, ,,,unshocked

  4. Incognito 4

    Tax cuts will be a huge mistake, again.

    They will not help the Precariat to get ahead and be better off.

    They will not stimulate the economy much.

    They will not be invested in such a way that it will lead to an increase in productivity.
    They will end up where 99% of the money ends up.

    Cynical is too soft a word to describe National’s awful striptease and greasy-pole dance to stay in power and simultaneously give themselves a nice little (indirect) handout courtesy of the New Zealand Tax Payers.

  5. mosa 5

    Vote 2017

    National party -Tax cut despite the deficit – Labour steals your money.

    Labour party – social investment – Public service’s – National takes your money and after giving most of it away to the rich folk gives that hard worker a little of it back.

  6. Gristle 6

    Joyce has indicated a policy reshuffle coming up over the next 2 months. Changes?

    1. Tax cut backdown to the extent of being general. Perhaps something limited to addressing the tax bracket creep. So it’s a bob each way.

    2. Inquiry into abuse of state charges. (Makes no sense as to why it was so emphatically taken off the table over the last couple weeks, except to make space for English to put it back on.)

    3. Going hard on selling state houses.

  7. Incognito 7

    “There will be a freshness of some new policy positions,” Mr Joyce told TVNZ’s Q&A. [my bold]

    “We’re heading into an election for a fourth term – you have to go through a process of head checking yourself on all your policy positions. Many will stay the same and a few will change,” he said.

    “One of hallmarks and virtues of this government is that it has been sensible, predictable and pragmatic.” [my bold]

    A little policy tinkering here & there, a few ‘new’ faces, some moving of deckchairs, a little window dressing and voilà we have a battle-ready National Party aiming to win a fourth term in 2017.

    In other words, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

  8. saveNZ 8

    Apparently Hooton was saying on radio NZ from Natz internal polling, that John Key’s popularity was lower than Clarks at the same time and that his negative scores on arrogance and smarmy were higher than Clarks at the same time.

    So my guess is that John Keys 8 years of lies were coming to an end to Joe Public. And Key left because he wants to swan around the world telling everyone how great he was as PM and leave the crap to English to sort out.

    But as we can tell from 8 years of poor economic management under English he’s
    not exactly Mr Mastermind of the Economy. So tax cuts or no tax cuts Natz have zero new ideas apart from asset sales and will run a soporific campaign to try to bore people against voting against them.

  9. Incognito 9

    Experienced and outspoken economist Michael Reddell does not seem to be a fan of Steven Joyce as Minister of Finance:

    The prospect of Joyce as Minister of Finance isn’t encouraging.


    But it is difficult to optimistic about the directions in which as Minister of Finance he would guide the overall approach to economic policy.

    In my opinion, Steven Joyce has failed to lift R & D (spending) in New Zealand to healthy and sustainable levels. Mr Joyce has also attempted to erode the autonomy of NZ academic institutions by meddling with the number and composition of TEI Councils, all pretty legal, of course.

  10. Tamati Tautuhi 10

    Listen we are a Rockstar Economy and the hard working people of NZ deserve a tax cut
    and there is enough room in the Balance Sheet to accomodate one, despite our overseas borrowings climbing from $12 Billion to $120 Billion over the past 8 years under the current National Government?

  11. Bob 11

    ” Imagine the media field-day if there was this kind of confusion at the heart of Labour’s economic policy.”
    From your own listed quotes:
    “English himself remained cagey about the chances of any tax changes, saying they would only take place if “economic and fiscal conditions allow”, while there were higher priorities”
    “There was no “explicit provision” for tax cuts, but the Government would consider its options for Budget 2017 or later as the financial situation continued to improve”
    “tax cuts remain in ‘the mix’ under Bill English Govt”
    “The presumptive Finance Minister is not ruling out tax cuts going into election year”

    All of the quotes you listed say exactly the same thing, tax cuts aren’t a priority, but if conditions allow they will be considered. If you think this is incoherent I can see why you think NZ media is biased, and it has got nothing to do with the NZ media…you may not like the message, but it is consistent and the public can understand it (even if you can’t).

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