The lucky country: Aussie tax system more progressive than NZ’s

Written By: - Date published: 10:25 am, January 21st, 2010 - 55 comments
Categories: im/migration, International, tax, wages - Tags:

It fascinates me that in all this talk about ‘catching up with Australia’ via tax cuts, nobody bothers to look at the Aussie tax system to see what they’re doing.

Keith Ng has a cool interactive graph on the portion of all income earnt by different income groups and the tax they pay. He compares what we have now with Australia, a flat tax, and if income was shared equally. I can’t copy over the interactive part which gives a lot more detail but here are the NZ and Australian graphs side by side – the width of the wedges is their share of earnings, the area of the wedges shows the share of income tax they pay (eg. the bottom 50% have 17% of earnings and pay 12% of tax in NZ, in Aussie they have 25% of earnings and pay 12% of tax):

Keith’s conclusions:

* Rich people have a very big slice mainly because they have a very broad slice. That is, they pay a lot of tax because they make a lot of money. Duh.
* Rich people get taxed more on their income (their slice sticks out more). That’s because we have progressive tax systems. Duh.
* How progressive? At the top end, New Zealand’s tax system is less progressive than Australia. Rich peps in Australia pay more than they do in New Zealand, both proportionally and in absolute terms.
* At the bottom end, New Zealand’s tax system is *far* less progressive than Australia. If you zoom in to the bottom 50% (you need to go to the original graph for that) , you’ll see that Australia curves in very quickly that’s because the first $6,000 of income is tax free, which means that poor pricks pay very little tax.
* On top of this, Australia’s bottom 50% have a bigger share of the total income. This is not a tax issue, nor about the income disparity between New Zealand and Australia. Income is more equitably distributed in Australia, even before tax is taken into account.
* It’s not some kind of tricky accounting. Australia has a tax-free bottom bracket, and at the top end, it goes all the way up to 45% (New Zealand’s top rate is 38%). Australia’s tax system is simply more progressive. This means it’s low income earners who have a tax incentive to move to Australia, and rich peps who don’t.

Add to that the minimum wage in Australia is $14.31. Surprise, surprise, the people going to Aussie are not rich people going to tax advantages. It’s mostly low-income workers in jobs like construction who get better pay and have less tax, as well as professions like medicine that pay a whole lot better. Tax cuts for the rich isn’t going to change that, only higher wages and a fairer tax system will.

ps. Keith, could you email us your source data?

55 comments on “The lucky country: Aussie tax system more progressive than NZ’s”

  1. ghostwhowalksnz 1

    SO we are going to match the Aussie rate of 45% ?

    Yet the clamour for the business tax rate to match 30% is coming for the people who fund National ( & ACT)

  2. BLiP 2

    Makes me wonder what that tax working group was really doing before sending some minion down to the archives to fish out and dust off the failed 1980’s “chicago” manifesto.

  3. burt 3

    SO we are going to match the Aussie rate of 45% ?

    Only if we have the same rich prick threshold – theirs is currently over 2x ours. Hard to argue $150K AUD is a good income, easy to see that high school teachers in NZ are not earning that sort of money but our tax system calls them rich.

  4. burt 4

    A junior Dr in NZ is paying the top threshold, they earn almost twice as much in Aussie but still don’t qualify as rich. Can anyone remind me again why we have such a low perspective of rich in NZ other than to ensure the middle earners shoulder an unreasonable burden of taxaton to keep them poor.

    • Pascal's bookie 4.1

      So what rate are they paying in Australia?

    • Sam 4.2

      So it’s acceptable if you’re a wingnut to blame the system for making you poor, but if you’re not a wingnut then it’s not? Is that like how Garrett says his upbringing made him a bigot, totally at odds to ACT party policy?

      You really need to have a look at the real world, dude, you’re completely deluded.

  5. burt 5

    Pascal’s bookie

    Roger Douglas wants to set the rich prick threshold at $31200.

    http://www.rogerdouglas.org.nz/?p=425

    Is it the tax free up to that level that upsets you ? Would you like to keep the status quo where low income earners pay tax from the first dollar they earn or would you rather I didn’t highlight that because the selective representation of what Douglas has written makes a good sound bite against a backdrop of “rich prick” thresholds ?

    • Pascal's bookie 5.1

      No burt, just pointing out that if “rick prick thresholds” means anything, (clue: I don’t think it does), then Douglas wants a much lower one.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.2

      RDs proposals are exactly the same as they were 30 years ago – become wealthier by being more expensive.

    • felix 5.3

      Isn’t “rich prick threshold” just your name for the top threshold, burt?

      If not, then what is it?

  6. burt 6

    felix

    Yes I guess calling the threshold applied to the top end of the income scale a rich prick threshold is too confusing for some. Pointing out that high earners in Aussie pay more tax than NZ and low earners pay less is also something that was highly unpopular when Cullen was steering the economy to the rocks. But now it seems to be the rage. It is hard to keep up some times and especially so when the principle of an issue is less important than who said what about it.

    Perhaps you could help me come up with a new name ‘top tax rate threshold’ is just missing that Je ne sais qua.

    • Pascal's bookie 6.1

      You mistranslated ‘spin’ there burt.

    • felix 6.2

      I don’t know burt, “top tax rate threshold” seems to work for most people.

      Pointing out that high earners in Aussie pay more tax than NZ and low earners pay less is also something that was highly unpopular when Cullen was steering the economy to the rocks.

      Strange, I don’t recall you screaming that from the rooftops.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      Pointing out that high earners in Aussie pay more tax than NZ and low earners pay less is also something that was highly unpopular when Cullen was steering the economy to the rocks.

      I seem to recal that that was said quite a lot of times – especially on this blog. It was the RWNJs that were trying to say such differences didn’t exist.

  7. tsmithfield 7

    If increasing the tax rates on the rich is so cool, why not tax at 100% on the wealthy?

  8. burt 8

    Why stop at 100%, if you make it 400% then you will get everyone earnign the same very quickly. The overalls will be made in one size, grey for normal and red for special ocassions (like when standing in bread queues etc).

    The great socialist dream of nobody earning too much and nobody earning too little will never be achieved while people are allowed to keep their own income rather than receive a standard allowance from the glorious state.

  9. tsmithfield 9

    felix “If a glass of wine is enjoyable then why not drink it all day?

    If swimming is healthy then why not live in the ocean?”

    You didn’t actually answer the question. Why not tax the wealthy at 100%?

    Answer that, then you may also answer why it is equally stupid to tax the rich at other high rates.

  10. burt 10

    felix

    I did a post about it in March 2006, and did reference it a lot around that time.
    http://burtnz.blogspot.com/2006_03_01_archive.html

    Sadly the original stuff links are gone.

    Just popping back to this one. I had hoped that after a whole page of stuff feedback about this there would be some more information put out by the Govt to justify it’s potential caught with a good spin on.

    “Thinking about a move to Australia? Think again, warns Prime Minister Helen Clark.
    Because across the ditch you’ll run into higher taxes, higher property prices, higher unemployment, plus compulsory medicare and superannuation, she said in Palmerston North yesterday. ”

    See stuff : http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3597243a10,00.html

    I also borrowed an official avg household income figure of $65,5209 from here.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3603795a6160,00.html

    I postulated that as the tax rates had different graduation points and rates, I would need to calculate both the tax on the income as if was earned by a single person as well as splitting the income between two people. To give a fair comparison for the average NZ household income.

    Australian tax rates from here were used:
    http://www.ato.gov.au/individuals/content.asp?doc=/content/12333.htm

    And NZ rates are from here:
    http://www.ird.govt.nz/income-tax-individual/itaxsalaryandwage-incometaxrates.html

    As an Individual an Australian pays $15,516 as tax on a gross income of $65,520.
    An Individual in NZ pays $16,822.80 as tax on a gross income of $65,520.

    The Aussie pays $1,306.80 less tax on an income $65,520

    As an Individual an Australian pays $5,688 as tax on a gross income of $32,760.
    An Individual in NZ pays $6,388.20 as tax on a gross income of $32,760.

    The Aussies pays $698 less tax on an income of $32,760.

    So that was the averages disposed off, how about the lower incomes.

    Lets say Joe earns $18,000 a year.
    In Aussie the tax is $1,800
    In NZ the tax is a whopping $3,510

    The Aussie is paying $1,710 less tax on an income of $18,000.
    In NZ you pay almost twice as much tax when you earn $18,000. a year. It’s just my opinion but I think this a very bad look for a Govt that claims it represents the lower to average income working people of NZ.

    So I also looked at a reasonably large salary.
    Lets say Joe earns $100,000
    Aussie: $30,550
    Kiwi: $30,270

    The Kiwi pays $280 less here on an income of $100,000.

    So the cross over point in the progressive models used is somewhere close below $100,000.

    A quick look at massive income of $280,000
    Aussie: $115,150
    Kiwi: $100,470

    Kiwi pays $14,680 less tax on an income of $280,000. Once again it’s just my opinion but I think this a very bad look for a Govt that claims it represents lower to average income working people of NZ.

    So the truth of the matter would appear to be, that the average Kiwi is better off in Aussie tax wise. Lower income earners are a lot better off in Australia tax wise and high income earners pay more tax in Australia.

    I wonder was she using a large dollop of spin or was she thinking of her own income when she made the statement. Perhaps she thought she was addressing the business round table.

    • snoozer 10.1

      your numbers ignore the other taxes aussies pay – complusory super, medicare, stamp duty, capital gains.

      you’re comparing apples with half a banana

      look at the tax wedge to see how much of the money an employer pays for labour gets taken in tax before the employee gets their net income – http://jimdonovan.net.nz/wp-content/uploads/2009/05/oecd-tax-wedge.jpg

      • Zaphod Beeblebrox 10.1.1

        You don’t pay the super- your employer does. If you want to you can top it up yourself, you can- tax free. I call that a government gift.

        • snoozer 10.1.1.1

          if you imagine the supply and demand graph for labour complusory super is part of the cost the demander pays for labour but it doesn’t get to the supplier. in theory if it weren’t there people would get higher gross wages instead.

          Not that I’m against it, mind. I’m just pointing out the tax situation in Aussie comapred to NZ isn’t how burt imagines it.

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 10.2

      Remember also that in Oz GST is 10% and food attracts no GST. Electricity, Gas, Phones are considerably cheaper over there. If you are poor you are much better off over there

  11. burt 11

    snoozer

    Keep up, now Cullen & Clark are not trying to say taxes are higher in Australia there is no need to run that interference. It is OK now to speak the truth about relative income taxes.

    • felix 11.1

      I suppose if you’re just going to ignore all the other taxes as snoozer points out you’re doing then you might have a point.

      Meanwhile back in reality…

  12. Sam 12

    It’s always amusing to see how the tories cope when presented with actual facts rather than Crosby-Texter spin. Oh so many tears.

  13. tc 13

    This whole catching up with Oz is a strawman so the Nat’s can reward their backers (the wealthy) off the back of the everyday low/middle income earners.

    Oz has a CGT on a sliding 7 year basis to ping those caught investing in property to make a buck…..it gets taxed, unlike here where it fuels house prices and those doing it pay no tax.

    Oz has compulsory super (employer and employee contributions) which is Pre tax, can be self managed and allows you to increase the pretax contribution toward retirement so they have an enforced savings regime and a generation now retiring with no State assistance required.

    Oz is a resource economy with enough oil/gas/minerals to export forever with a broad tax system underpinned by these self managed super schemes.

    this was mostly created by the Hawke/Keating admin however unlike here the right in Oz are far more pragmatic and rational so they left it alone knowing it was the way forward unlike the idelogical luddites in NZ’s right wing NACT vehicles.

    Oz is a lucky country indeed, blessed with resources the world demands and visionaries like Keating back in the 80’s who made the hard calls and an opposition not bound by ideology that reverse what the last lot did……simply because they can.

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 13.1

      I remember when CGT was introduced by Keating. A few rich people squealed but no one really cared. Why is itthat its is the first thing rejected by Key?

  14. burt 14

    Sam

    It’s always amusing to see how the tories cope when presented with actual facts rather than Crosby-Texter spin. Oh so many tears.

    It is interesting you use the word ‘tory’ in this thread. The post I pasted in before was in response to the labour dim-bulbs talking about Aussie tax cuts in 2006 as “tory tax cuts for their rich’ which when actual facts were applied (IE: actually looking at the rates in use and the nature of the progressive models between Aussie and NZ) showed how Labour in NZ were ‘tory’ compared to the govt in Aussie of that time which was being called a ‘tory’ govt. This thread shows that taxation is more progressive in Aussie and the truth is that it has been that way throughout the entire Labour govt rule of 1999-2008. The whole 9 years of Labour we had a less progressive tax system than Aussie had and the whole time our Labour apologists were calling Aussie a tory govt.

    Needless to say when Labor took over in Aussie the taunts of “tory’ stopped and now that we have a National govt the Labour apologists feel secure enough to actually face the fact that we have a less progressive tax system. It’s not the tories who are running from the facts.

    • Sam 14.1

      Why yes, I too like to prattle on about completely unrelated things so as to avoid talking about things that make me uncomfortable.

  15. burt 15

    felix

    I suppose if you’re just going to ignore all the other taxes as snoozer points out you’re doing then you might have a point.

    Meanwhile back in reality this thread is about income tax thresholds, which I was adressing much to the displeasure of people who still want to believe that NZ isn’t a tory tax model by comparison.

    I’ve said I would rather see flat taxes, but I have also said over and over – if we have a rich threashold then aim it at the rich – not the bulk of tax payers.

  16. roger nome 16

    “if we have a rich threashold then aim it at the rich not the bulk of tax payers.”

    Yo Burt – about 80% of tax payers earn below $50,000 in NZ. That’s how unequal the income distribution is. Feel free to plant your face in your hand now.

    Here are the stats:

    http://www.stats.govt.nz/Census/2006CensusHomePage/QuickStats/quickstats-about-a-subject/incomes.aspx

  17. burt 17

    Sorry guys it is time you faced the hard cold reality; Clark & Cullen overtaxed low-middle income NZ while giving a free ride to their rich mates. The gullible supporters of their redistribution rhetoric totally ignored the fiscal reality of what was actually occurring, totally ignored who was most hurt by fiscal drag and totally ignored that our Tory neighbours were taxing low income workers less and high income workers more than our socialist and proud of it govt.

    OK, if we can accept that we can then open our minds to how we can improve the tax system rather than just argue for status quo because we were misled by people who we though were telling us the truth.

    What is it going to be; live in the distorted view of the past your previous masters sold you or face the reality that they lied to you and fix it ?

    • snoozer 17.1

      “Clark & Cullen overtaxed low-middle income NZ while giving a free ride to their rich mates. ”

      evidence?

      I thought you were crying because Clark and Cullen put the top tax rate up to 39%, hardly a free-ride for the rich (and I can tell you, one thing Labour doesn’t have a lot of is rich mates)

      And clark and Cullen gave low and middle income NZ a 410 a week tax cut by cutting the bottom rate. What did National do? Oh, tax cut for the rich.

      • Herodotus 17.1.1

        Tha C&C couple also inferred that a single income family can survive on less money than a doulble income family on the same gross wage
        So for case study a family income $95k with 3 16-18 year olds you are entitled to $55/week FTC and In work $60/week and after tax of $95-20=$75k + benefits
        Single income same family structure
        $95-27.6= $67.4k
        Both get the same WFF, why does it cost less for 1 earner in a family to live than 2?
        Same family but all 3 children are under 12, WFF is $0/week,In work =$42/week but the after tax figures are the same.
        Nice to see what is valued within this society!!

        • Descendant Of Smith 17.1.1.1

          That reflects the point I made elsewhere. Once the baby boomers had raised their families and their kids were leaving home and mum could go out to work income splitting was no longer needed.

          I had 3 kids under 5 when that was removed and I know it made life much more difficult at the time – as did the removal of universal family benefit and high mortgage interest rates.

          I’m more than happy for families to have the choice to combine incomes for tax purposes or have them assessed separately depending on whether they have children or not.

          Universal Family Benefit in my view should never have been thrown out, would clearly reduce bureaucracy and avoidance and benefit envy by the better off.

          Income splitting also gives more choice and support for those where only one partner can find work or one partner has to look after children with disabilities for instance. This would more than likely result in a reduction in DPB numbers or at least new cases coming on.

          Socially these options are both more acceptable to the general public as well. I’m sure people hate having to apply for the current forms of assistance through WFF.

          I know there are arguments against both these things but both seem to resolve many of the issues that emotionally people are finding difficult with the current systems.

          • Descendant Of Smith 17.1.1.1.1

            Just curious now: Do the well off front up to apply for WFF like normal people or do their accountants send in the forms?

            • Herodotus 17.1.1.1.1.1

              Apparently you can apply on line, but some friends I know have been caught out by being eligible when applying but with promotions, bonus, change of jobs exceed the income levels then have to refund the money. No time is a good time to repay an overpayment. What got them was that they were unaware of such things until when the books were balance after the fin year, and many still have from these experiences feel in a similar vein as the free pre school. Oversold and under delivered. My personel feelings for families earning over $80k was that they should not have been eligable and the money to those closer to the poverty line and unable to utilise WFF, but that is a lossing personal oponion !!

              • Descendant Of Smith

                I was just thinking that given you can’t remove emotion from decisions (including political ones) that if we were going to give more to the well off bringing back those two policies would meet that need, simplify things for everyone and probably have some quite good social outcomes.

                There’s also a deep seated emotional attachment to the universal family benefit that we were once proud of. The reduction in bureaucracy for most people would be welcome – maybe a few less public servants even.

                I would think given the reduction in real wages for many people over the last 20 odd years that there might still need to be some targeted assistance at the bottom but this type of policy would take care of that middle group who are more than likely resentful of being made to feel like bludgers by having to apply.

                It’s probably quite easy to consider that tax cuts at the top are attractive as a better option for people when they resent having to put their hands out for WFF even when they are on a good income.

                I do think that is something Labour got wrong – while moving the entitlement thresholds up may have made good fiscal sense and no doubt has plenty of economic and policy analysis behind it it doesn’t resonate at an emotional level.

                People feel much better getting something that everyone is entitled to ( in this instance everyone with kids).

      • burt 17.1.2

        snoozer

        Was the bit where I said; ” live in the distorted view of the past your previous masters sold you or face the reality that they lied to you and fix it ?” completely lost on you ?

        Under Labour we ended up with 75% of high school teachers paying the top tax threshold and now we hear that of a selection of the 100 most wealthy people in NZ about half are not paying the top threshold.

        Think carefully then see if you can reconcile the concept of fairness with that situation.

  18. RedLogix 18

    now we hear that of a selection of the 100 most wealthy people in NZ about half are not paying the top threshold.

    Invariably because they diverted income to companies or trusts. Is there anything in this report that tackles that issue burt? Or have I missed something?

    • burt 18.1

      RedLogix

      You probably only though about the property tax in terms of it being passed on to people paying rent. The reality that some of the most exclusive properties in this country sit quietly empty between visits from the top threshold dodging owners is something to ponder.

      • RedLogix 18.1.1

        The reality that some of the most exclusive properties in this country sit quietly empty between visits from the top threshold dodging owners

        Sounds like a certain residence in Dipton…but I digress..in this sort case the rules don’t need changing, merely enforced.

      • burt 18.1.2

        That being the case my statement that Labour didn’t take the steps required to address it are even more valid….

        Umm, we had the tools to address that but it wasn’t politically expedient to use them – Perhaps it was not in the public interest to prosecute.

        • RedLogix 18.1.2.1

          This is true, but perhaps they already had enough powerful people lined up against them.

          Funny how even mention of a CGT was ‘political suicide’ in Cullen’s time, but somehow it all became acceptable talk once the govt was changed.

          • Zaphod Beeblebrox 18.1.2.1.1

            Except for the PM- he’s been treating CGT like it was the plague.

            Did you read Mallard’s blog where he claimed Cullen offered English a CGT if he gave bi-partisan support? Bet English wished he took up the offer now!

  19. Herodotus 19

    It was never politicial suicide, there was no conviction on their behalf, just like giving the IRD added resources at an appripiate time to chase those who speculated on property ( in some cases putting the property on the market before completing the S&P agreement to purchase). Sure there was some cases in Queenstown and a few other isolated cases. Now the rush is over the IRD are now becomming over aggressive in their approach to land transactions within the last year, yet they appear gun shy to review anything within the 2002-6 period.

  20. RedLogix 20

    Actually it was the National govt of the 90’s that directed IRD to quietly leave the distinction between an investor and a trader deliberately left so unclear that it many people even forgot that the rule existed. (A trader’s capital gain is treated as taxable income, whereas an investor’s isn’t.)

    I believe that it was some years before this massive loophole came to Cullen’s attention, and it was only in Labour’s third term that IRD was directed to aggresively pursue the rorters.

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    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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