What I want from a 4th term Labour-led Govt

Written By: - Date published: 1:59 pm, September 8th, 2008 - 140 comments
Categories: election 2008 - Tags:

With the election fast approaching, here’s a non-exhaustive list of policies I would like to see from a 4th term Labour-led Government. Hopefully, other Standardistas will have time to make their own wish-lists too:

– Serious investment in low-oil/low-carbon infrastructure. If we’re not to let peak oil catch us unprepared, we have to get serious now. I would like to see a fourth term government set sustainability rules for new housing developments, switch far more money into public transport, and subsidise sustainable building techniques.

– Deepen democracy. We need to rebuild people’s interest in politics and empower them to believe they can make a difference. Citizen assemblies should be used to tackle tricky policy issues – like electoral funding and euthanasia. Citizen assemblies have popular legitimacy because the policy is developed by ordinary people and put to the people in referenda. Overseas experience shows that when ordinary people are asked to learn about an issue and develop a policy response they come up with leftwing answers. There needs to be a new emphasis on teaching democratic participation in schools. And the parties of the Left need to focus on rebuilding themselves as the mass parties they once were. This helps to protect social democracy from the Crosby/Textor, ‘me, me, me’, false popularism of the new Right.

– A sovereign wealth fund run along the lines of the Cullen fund with a mandate to bring into public ownership assets of importance (both in NZ and abroad) to the New Zealand economy. Economic conditions globally are undoubtedly going to get more difficult in coming years. We need to act to ensure that important assets are run in the interests of New Zealand, not foreign owners. The fund could receive its investment money from an annual injection by the Government, by offering bonds through Kiwibank, and/or by setting up a Kiwisaver fund for the purpose.

– A review of the Reserve Bank Act to find better ways to keep the lid on inflation than strangling the export sector.

– Lifting the minimum wage to at least $15 an hour, improving the bargaining power of workers through MECAs, preventing passing on of union-won benefits to other workers (a union-busting practice).

– Re-nationalise Contact and reunite the power companies to get rid of this ridiculous system we have now.

140 comments on “What I want from a 4th term Labour-led Govt”

  1. In no particular order:

    – Initiatives to get uni fees down. As a student who is facing graduation with 10k of debt on his head I’m getting a bit tired of being talked down to on issues of student debt by those who got their education for free.

    – Lessons on politics and citizenship in schools as advocated by Sue Bradford. It was depressing to hear a previous co-worker declare New Zealand to be one of the states of America. Obviously that was an extreme example but there is a huge lack of awarenss among young people in this country.

    – A crackdown on employers who exploit youth. The practices employed by some are a downright disgrace. Split shifts, casual contracts for genuinely part-time workers, stingy managers, unfair dismissals. I think it’s about time the young in this country were treated with a bit of dignity when it comes to work and if it requires legislation then so be it.

    – A genuinely independent foreign policy. Helen Clark was wise to not drag us into the Iraq quagmire but what the fuck happened when the Butcher of Qana strode into town? A bench warrant was issued for this scumbags arrest for war crimes but Michael Cullen overruled it!

  2. Joe Blogger 2

    – Increased front line police officers in high crime areas like South Auckland.

    – The setting up of a government fund to immediately pay out court fines/compensation to the victims of crime and for debt to be paid back by the offender to the Government instead.

    – A directive issued to all judges that offenders involved in multiple crimes should receive consecutive sentences not cumulative.

    – An overhaul of the Welfare system to allow easier access to assistance to those in genuine need and easier administration by those involved in the process.

  3. lprent 3

    Oh darn I’ll have to find some time for this.

    I have to say that I’m such a centerist / business orientated compared to to the youthful exuberance Steve or IT displays. I’m interested in really boring parts of government that make a difference over the long term.

    For instance in the area that Joe Blogger is taking about, I actually see one crying need. We have to be able to move cases through the court in a more timely manner. At present the main constraint seems to be the actual capacity of courts in NZ. It is ridiculous that it can take 14 months to get a trial in a criminal case at district court level.

    I’m not even going to talk about the delays in a civil trial at the High Court.

    Those things are more fundemental to having an equitable system of justice than the quick-fixes/soundbites that Joe Blogger is talking about in his first 3 points. It is also a lot harder to achieve.

  4. Bill 4

    Within the current social democratic framework….

    Raising benefits to pre 1991 levels.
    Reverse their scrapping of special benefits.
    Scrap the ERA
    Promote meaningful expressions of democracy in the workplace.
    Free health care and education.
    Get back control of the reserve bank.
    An unequivocal abandonment of neo-liberal economic policies.
    Take important industry and infra-structure out of private hands

    Going beyond the current social democratic framework….

    1) Developing substantive dialogue and exchange (trade and cultural)with Venezuela. Learning from and implementing variations of processes successfully developed through the Bolivarian Revolution.

    2)Standing up on the world stage as supporters of a multi polar world.

    3)Devolving power and decision making to the local level.

    Guess I better not be holding my breath then?

  5. principessa 5

    Free Public Transport.

  6. Muldoon Magic 6

    [deleted]
    [lprent: goodbye Rob. He was almost sounding rational there…]

  7. Bill 7

    Muldoon Magic… “Then we can have in a Centre right Government that is Business friendly with an economic vision to grow the Economy…”

    Where the fuck you been lad? What you think you’ve had for the past 9 years? A centre left government? Wow!

  8. Just a few one liners:

    More support for Asian language teaching in New Zealand schools.

    Reintroduce overtime and penalty rates.

    A tax bottom free bracket.

    Remove the secondary income tax (which hurts those trying to pull an income from two part time jobs).

    Remove the two week stand-down for benefits (two weeks is a long time to survive without money).

    Greater support for peace building initiatives internationally.

    Reduce the amount of tied aid.

    Riparian planting along all waterways.

  9. whoops, should be – a bottom tax free bracket (up to $6k, perhaps?)

  10. Billy 10

    To be left alone.

  11. Chuck_NZ 11

    A recount

  12. Vanilla Eis 12

    George: The secondary tax rate is there to protect you from being hit with a tax bill if your combined income exceeds 38k (soon to be 48k?).

    You can still apply for a rebate at the end of the financial year for all the extra money you paid in tax. It’s not perfect (admittedly, those working two jobs are least likely to be able to give up a few dollars extra a week in exchange for a lump-sum once a year) but it’s not over-taxation.

  13. Tane 13

    Now Billy, you don’t want that. Your wealth is built on legally codified power relationships. Remove that legal protection and you can wave goodbye to your fancy fennel and pork rolls.

  14. IrishBill 14

    Tane has a point, Billy. But apart from the minor stuff like laws to make theft and murder illegal and a bit of taxation (which is low by international standards), can you tell me exactly how the government has intruded on your life in the last three years?

  15. Vanilla Eis, thanks for clarifying that. I’m also not sure what effect the recent tax cuts will have on this situation (if any).

  16. You want to have trade with Venezuela? why not come out and say what you really want, you want us to be socialist.

    [um, Brett, you’ve been asked not to post while stoned. There’s no embargo on trade with Venezuela at present. We probably do a little trade with them. I am a socialist but my post is on practical policies next term, I don’t expect a Labour-led govt to overthrow capitalism and institute socialism next term. SP]

  17. Billy 17

    IrishBill, by way of example, it has stopped me and Tane enjoying a tab in the boozer.

  18. burt 18

    1) put the best interests of the public ahead of the best interests of the Labour party.

    Too much to ask?

  19. randal 19

    A JOB

  20. Billy 20

    Ooh, nice. Can we please organise randal a job in the PM’s office?

  21. Can you organise one for me too? I’m finishing this degree sometime next year.

  22. Anita 22

    I’m going to restrict myself to only four points (the list would be endless otherwise).

    – end poverty in New Zealand. End child poverty in 3 years, all poverty in 6. This means increasing both financial assistance to our poorest and access to all services

    – health and education are rights. No-one in NZ should pay to access core health or education services – no “optional” fees; free all the way.

    – dismantle the capitalist market-based economy. Let’s be a country focussed on people not stuff.

    – honour, accept and include diversity in all its forms. This means sorting out genuine gender equality, real equity for people with disabilities, repealing legislation designed to enforce conformity (eg the Terrorism Suppression Act), and addressing political participation to name only a few.

    Wow – four isn’t many, I didn’t even have room for climate change 🙂

  23. IrishBill 23

    Billy, what’s a tab?

  24. Bill 24

    Brett.

    I don’t want either of ‘you’ to be anything in particular. Or did the ‘us’ refer to some constituency you represent? Or some entity you over empathise with? Whatever. Same answer.

    Meanwhile, there is trade with Venezuela. What’s your problem? Socialism? Like Freddie and Mae getting nationalised to save the sorry collective arse of private institutional investors?

  25. Billy 25

    Cigarette.

  26. Billy 26

    dismantle the capitalist market-based economy

    With what do you propose to replace it, Anita?

  27. Billy 27

    I don’t expect a Labour-led govt to overthrow capitalism and institute socialism next term.

    Me neither. Seems to be Anita’s humble goal though.

  28. Bill 28

    Reading through the comments here, it strikes me that most of what is wished for, can only, maybe, be associated with Labour in a ‘once upon a time’ fairy story way.

    So any such changes will come about in a Labour led government only very much in spite of Labour.

    Still want to see them done for misleading advertising/branding. In fact, put that to the top of my wish list.

  29. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left 29

    Heres what Big Bruv of Kiwiblog “expects” from a 4th Term Labour Govt
    * 24 hour state funded child care
    * Gay adoption
    * One social worker per child
    * Late term abortion
    * Changes to rape laws that put the onus on the accused to prove his innocence
    * Hate speech legislation
    * Mandatory race, gender and sexuality quotas in senior business appointments
    * Massive increases in DPB and unemployment benefits for single mothers

    so what I want from a 4th term Labour Govt is simple

    keep up the Working for Families (no increases needed)

    Extend the FREE ECE to two year olds

    And most importantly free anti-paranoia drugs for Big Bruv and his buddies
    we have let them suffer needlessly for too long

  30. Tane 30

    Meanwhile, Matthew Hooton well and truly jumps the shark over at policy.net with:

    Would a 4th term Clark Government abolish the free press?

  31. Sarah 31

    1/ Lower the first two tax brackets and raise significantly the third (to around 47%). Allow more individuals to take more control of their lives and shape their own destinies.

    2/ Substantially increase spending within Education. If New Zealand wants to be prosperous in the future then we need to work on education and we need to increase human-investment.Add ten grand straight away to the pay packets of all teachers. These are the people who will build and nourish our next generation. Bring in initiatives to lower university fees. Get rid of zoning and increase competition between our children within the education sector.

    3/ Remove beauracacy within health and ensure that the output of operations and doctors services match the money which goes in.

    4/ The disenstablishment of the Standard.

    5/ Wait. A 1st term National-led Govt instead.

  32. Bill 32

    dismantle the capitalist market-based economy

    With what do you propose to replace it, Anita?

    Sorry for crashing in. Here you go Billy, and Magic Muldoon…http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Participatory_economics. No market. People and socially useful production only. Have a read.

  33. Muldoon Magic 33

    [deleted]
    [lprent: goodbye Rob.]

  34. What I want from the Next Government who ever they may be.

    Policies based on stats and hard data not bad science.

    Acknowledgment that Taggers are criminals and not artists

    More Police, and more rights for the Police.

    Business studies to be compulsory at schools.

    A Flat tax.

    GST to be taken off of all food.

    More money on Health.

    Any policy that is not based on race.

    Try to mend relations with our traditional allies.

    Any party that wont ask you where you are from or what your religion is if you want to immigrate here.

    A party that would make any immigrate sign a contract that they wont go on welfare.

    A party that stands up for people saying what they like, how they like.

    A party that will try to have as little as impact on people’s daily life as possible.

    A party that believes in personal responsibility.

    [lprent: Taggers are definitely not artists around here. Anyone starts trolling to leave their mark and I terminate their access with prejudice and a few well chosen words – usually when they boast of their self-inflicted martyrdom. Taggers take all kinds of forms, I think you should widen your scope.

    Actually I tell a lie – there are some taggers who are tolerated here. I find that I have a morbid fascination… ]

  35. george 35

    free public transport

  36. I have to say agree with Anita on her four points, particularly a determination to end child poverty in this country. I can’t say I think Labour have any intention of abolishing the current order however. Their modus operandi is very much ‘strong market based economy, with Government intervention for gaps and failures, in order to pay for a high level of social services’. Classic ‘social democrat’ style Government.

    What is needed is the Government using better ways of measuring wellbeing than GDP, such as the tools Marilyn Waring has developed.

  37. Patrick 37

    I really wish the righties actually had something to contribute, but it seems their minds are as vacuous as the National party policy platform.

    Anyway, here are some thoughts from me:

    – Massive spending on public transport. Electrify Auckland’s railways, extend it to the North Shore and Airport. More, better, trains for Wellington. Look at electrifying the main trunk line between Dunedin and Chch, and if feasible, reintroducing a passenger service on that.

    – End child poverty. This is huge, and while I have some ideas on how to achieve it, I don’t think any of them alone could do it.

    – Increase funding for state owned schools to a level where they don’t have to ask for donations from parents. Then ban it.

    – Continue to increase the minimum wage, also look at increasing benefits.

    – Alter the certification system for builders and construction works to a tiered system.

    – George, I love your riparian planting planting idea, that’s going on my list.

    – Encourage more “brown field” housing developments, ensuring maximum access to public transport.

    – Reform of the DHB system. I have no idea how or why, but make sure that health professionals and community health people are well included in this.

    I think I should stop before I get carried away…

  38. Ben R 38

    WINZ to offer food/health/clothing vouchers for essential childhood items rather than money.

  39. BENR

    Excellent policy.

  40. Brett, seriously, not while you’re stoned. I mean look at your wish list:

    Policies based on stats and hard data not bad science. – which polices are based on bad science now? this better not be some retarded anti-climate chance rants.

    Acknowledgment that Taggers are criminals and not artists – um,tagging is crime, that seems to be acknowledgment.

    More Police, and more rights for the Police. Police have powers, not rights, and any particular powers you want them to have? arbitrary arrest? and how are you going to pay for them when you’re cutting taxes?

    Business studies to be compulsory at schools. dumb on so many levels.

    A Flat tax. 27% flat tax? I didn’t think so. So what would you cut?

    GST to be taken off of all food. And where would lost revenue be cut?

    More money on Health. This after you’ve slashed taxes.

    Any policy that is not based on race. which are now?

    Try to mend relations with our traditional allies. They are mended

    Any party that wont ask you where you are from or what your religion is if you want to immigrate here. – they have to ask where you are from and they don’t ask your religion.

    A party that would make any immigrate sign a contract that they wont go on welfare. – so a tax paying citizen wouldn’t be allowed to get a benefit if they need it just because they immigrated here? Racist.

    A party that stands up for people saying what they like, how they like. people are allowed to, they can even spend huge amounts trying to influence people’s votes, they just need to be honest enough to say who they are.

    A party that will try to have as little as impact on people’s daily life as possible – this is the same party you want to give more powers to the Police?

    A party that believes in personal responsibility. – If you believe in personal responsiblity then why do you want a more powerful State that has more powerful Police to force people to behave in certain ways? Surely, demanding the State do more to control people’s behaviour is the antithesis of personal responsiblity.

  41. Patrick, you know how to end child poverty?

    Please tell us, because no one on the face of the planet has been able to figure it out.

  42. Steve:

    Why is making business studies compulsory at school dumb?

  43. Wish it would stop raining 43

    The list could be endless but here is something that would give me more incentive to stay with labour and not party vote green

    more investment in adult literacy and numeracy issues. Many people have difficulty gaining better skills for better jobs, however it is so under resourced the waiting lists are huge (and often relies on volunteers

    Decent training programmes for the long term UE/SB and IB. It was so annoying to be almost placing a long-term UE client and then boom they were off on another course to keep them off the UE books and would have to plead with case manager to be able to keep working with them because you were almost at the point of them being work ready to go into a course. Many of my clients had been on heaps of the same type of course, were cynical and costs tax payers a lot

    The public sector acting as good role models and walking the talk by giving people opportunities and second chances to work there. Especially ESOL migrants and people with criminal records.

    Treating tertiary students like adults when they hit 20 years old so they are not at the mercy of mummy’s and/or daddy’s income. Think of it as an investment if they get the same as someone on the dole to get decent skills to put back into the community.

    Recognising that the voluntary sector is dwindling, yet society has relied on the unpaid labour of many. Give incentives to people who do want to volunteer such as recognised time off work

    If someone is working two part-time jobs because that is all they can get, stop penalising them with secondary tax.

    Bring back studentships and bonds for people to pay their way back from their studies by going to less popular areas

    Cut back on Public Sector head offices (especially middle management) and employ more people in the service centres or regional centres so these centres don’t have to be told they have to save $5 a day per person etc or a completely understaffed while head office employs another policy analyst

    Don’t ever ever ever have a go at solo parents again especially single mothers to try and satisfy employers’ needs to have cheap labour but try and fob it off that it was a positive way to get women back into the workforce – Helen you almost blew it for me there!!

  44. Crank 44

    End child poverty…lasting world peace.

    This post is starting to resemble a Miss World pageant.

    [lprent: A pathetic attempt at satire. F. Why did you bother to write]
    [lprent: As crank pointed out – observational comedy, not an attempt at satire. I’d say a B- for observational comedy]

  45. insider 45

    – Free money

    – The right to take money off other people to spend it on projects I think are best

    – The right to take assets off people and companies I don’t favour and to give to those I do, or to run them myself because I am far smarter than anyone who actually does it for a living

    – more free money

    [lprent: An poor attempt at satire. D-]

  46. Personal responsibility is making sure people understand that the Government is not responsible for where you are in life, that the Government is not there to offer you cradle to the grave support, the Government is not there to pay your bills, you are and you alone.

  47. Matthew Pilott 47

    Brett Dale, how does compulsory business studies fit in with your concept of personal responsibility?

    And incidentally, given that humans are societal animals (that looks wrong, but I’m sure the concept is discernable), why do you want to undo the work of our civilisation thus far? Do you, for example, seriously thing society is regressing in every way (and how can you determine that accurately enough to be sure you’re correct)?

  48. sean 48

    * more hospital and health board management staff so we can work out where all the money is being misspent
    * fart tax on greedy farmers
    * raise the top tax rate to 45% so that more income can be redistributed to more deserving Kiwis who do the real work (like supermarket workers)
    * free public transport for people struggling on benefits
    * free university for Maori people
    * compulsory KiwiSaver
    * tax foreign owned banks so they don’t rip off hard working Kiwis as much
    * abolish the ability to claim interest payments on property investments as expenses, so the greedy investment property owners stop ripping off hardworking Kiwis

    [lprent: An interesting attempt at satire. C-]

  49. The PC Avenger 49

    Brett, it’s a pity those countries that do take responsibility for their citizens, do offer cradle to the grave support, and do assist in paying bills tend to be the best countries to live in, with the highest standards of living, high per capita GPD, low crime, and high generational mobility. Otherwise your “I GOT MINE” world view might have some merit.

  50. Matthew:

    I believe that children should go to school, I just think what we are focusing on the wrong subjects.

  51. PCavenger:

    Name the countries please.

  52. Brett, you’ll hate the answer. Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Iceland.

    And before you go “but they’re rich” (indeed they are), these policies were begun well before their prosperity. And it’ll probably surprise you that these “nanny states” rank as some of the happiest on earth.

    I believe in personal responsibility. But I also believe that the policies of the right trap people in poverty, where a swing of bad luck can wipe out all that hard work and responsibility you’ve taken.

  53. Crank 53

    lprent,

    I think my comment fell into the realm of observational comedy rather than satire.

    Can I please be re-marked.

    [lprent: Sorry – I thought it was in the stream of satirical right derived estimates on left wish-lists (there must be a useful thesis in there for someone – if only for questions about the distribution of anti-paranoia drugs as someone earlier pointed out.).
    But you are correct. Your comment appears to not be from that sequence. This is what happens when I document code all day. ]

  54. Crank 54

    George Darroch,

    ‘And it’ll probably surprise you that these “nanny states’ rank as some of the happiest on earth’

    Interestingly these countries you mention have the highest suicide rates in the OECD. Perhaps Not the socialist utopia that they appear.

  55. Bill 55

    Is it a case that

    a)right wing commentators on this blog are so privileged as to not require government policy to improve aspects of their life?

    or

    b)right wing commentators on this blog are numpties?

    or

    c) a combination of a) and b) applies?

  56. Anita 56

    Crank,

    Interestingly these countries you mention have the highest suicide rates in the OECD.

    Reference?

    The first <a href=”http://www.oecdobserver.org/images//1792.photo.jpg”ref I found (OECD 2005 using 2002 stats, so you might have something newer) shows Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Iceland well in the lowest half of the OECD and all better than NZ.

  57. Your using Denmark is an example?????

    Just dont become a cartoonist there.

  58. Draco TB 58

    1.) 0% interest home loans for the home that you live in and would cover up to 100% of the value of the home. These would be funded from the reserve bank by the simple expedient of printing the money. Any registered financial “person” would be able to administer these mortgages for a fee which must be a fixed sum/year. Repayments would be set as a percentage of weekly income (there will be strict income testing on these loans). There would be strict conditions on the loan such as not being able to get one more than once every 5 years. These would be first extended to those most in need then, over time, extended to everyone.

    2.) Legislation supporting the concept of a Self Owned Enterprise. Strict rules to be govern these such as not being able to sell shares, employees of the business are the controllers and a minimum reinvestment from profit.

    3.) Full funding of schools and universities and a universal student allowance that can actually be lived on.

    4.) Free biannual physical checkups for everyone. This is both to encourage better eating habits and to try and catch cancers in the early stage of the disease.

  59. Crank 59

    Anita,

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_OECD_countries_by_suicide_rate

    According to this they all higher than NZ, Aus, US, UK (all the evil capitalist bastards).

  60. Felix 60

    Ok Brett, I wasn’t planning on it anyway but please do tell me why I shouldn’t become a cartoonist in Denmark.

    Apart from my appalling sense of humour and lack of artistic ability of course.

  61. Anita 61

    Crank,

    Nope. According to your reference Norway and Iceland both have lower suicide rates than NZ, Sweden has the same rate, and Denmark’s is higher.

    Anyhow that reference’s stats are a bit bogus because they don’t match year-on-year, so even if they did show what you said they do (and they don’t) they’d still be dubious. You could try to OECD figures I put in, or the MoH ones.

  62. leftie 62

    I heard the rumours of a universal student allowance a while back. I think a livable one is a great idea. It would be very useful to those that have a mortgage, but want to change career or even get a career. Any attempt to reduce students racking up debt has got to be a good thing.

    A genuine attempt to lift wages, tax cuts don’t cut the mustard with me, especially under a National Government (heres your tax cut, now screw you with employment law or increased costs for public services). Keeping unemployment low is a good start, now other steps need to be taken. Lets give the Right something to really cry about, and stop their empty harping about the NZ/Aus wage gap, plus Kiwis taking flight overseas.

  63. higherstandard 63

    After reading the wish lists above it appears whoever gets into parliament isn’t going to please many of those making comments.

  64. higherstandard 64

    Some kind of odd illusion to the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy I think Felix.

  65. Lord Hyperbole 65

    By jolly golly the mere thought of another round of Miss Clark’s regime will make me rather irate. Suicide and outta here rates are going to triple at the hideous prospect.
    [lprent: You’re looking to me like a troll. Lift your Standard or leave. So far I haven’t seen anything useful in any of your comments. ]

  66. Bill 66

    Draco TB

    you number 2.) Legislation supporting the concept of a Self Owned Enterprise. Strict rules to be govern these such as not being able to sell shares, employees of the business are the controllers and a minimum reinvestment from profit

    already exits. Its the Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1908. Workers own nominal (cant trade or accrue in value) shares. The workers are the owners.

  67. vto 67

    Draco, your number 1 (at 6.35pm) would be a dream come true for all those wide-boys you no doubt have little time for. Make lotsa rules and distortions, make lotsa loopholes and contortions…

    And as for Bill who said;

    “Is it a case that
    a)right wing commentators on this blog are so privileged as to not require government policy to improve aspects of their life?”

    That statement would have to illustrate one of the most profoundly disturbed outlooks on life on planet earth I have ever heard.

    You sound like you play accidental tricks on yourself.

    Crank said it best when he compared the wish lists on here to some Miss World pagaent.

  68. Anita 68

    hs,

    After reading the wish lists above it appears whoever gets into parliament isn’t going to please many of those making comments.

    Sad but true.

    Why do we have governments that are so much less courageous than the voters?

  69. mike 69

    “A JOB” randell – if you have been unemployed for a while you would surely have made it onto the sickness benifit with the rest of them by now?

  70. higherstandard 70

    Anita

    “Why do we have governments that are so much less courageous than the voters”

    Possibly because they have to live in the real world and not the bizarre fantasy land inhabited by some of those commenting.

  71. Tougher law enabling registration of companies and greater powers to the courts to intervene and impose liabities on directors and shareholders.
    Mandatory abitration in industrial disputes which dispupt public services, such as health and education. Centralised industry bargaining.
    Certain end to cruel farming practices such as battery hen farming. Increase funding for science and reseach and mechanisms which ensure scientific independance.
    More genuine power sharing with Maori.
    I agree most with others of the need to end poverty by not providing tax cuts and investing that money and more into communites.

  72. Bill 72

    HS

    “Possibly because they have to live in the real world and not the bizarre fantasy land inhabited by some of those commenting”

    What? Governments exist to facilitate the functioning of the market. And the market is a construction which could be termed as delusional with ‘nice’ psychotic side effects.

  73. vto 73

    alexandra;
    “Tougher law enabling registration of companies and greater powers to the courts to intervene and impose liabities on directors and shareholders.”

    That is the whole point of the limited liability company. The limited liability. The legal structure more responsible for the creation of today’s wealthy society than almost any other.

    It would be a fooooolish fool who effectively got rid of that. It allows people to tke risks they would otherwise never at all in their wildest dreams entertain. Ever used one?

    If people do not wish to take up the risk of dealing with such a legal beast then best not take up that risk.

  74. lprent 74

    mike:

    …if you have been unemployed for a while you would surely have made it onto the sickness benifit with the rest of them by now?

    Oh a reader of urban myths… How disappointing. Either that or you have no ability to do basic maths just like Judith Collins.

    Tell me Mike, what happens to population percentages when you have an increasing population? For instance if you have say 1.5% of 2 million, and then have 1.5% of 2.5 million? The absolute numbers go up right.

    Then if you’re a mathematical moron like Judith Collins you start claiming that the number of sickness benefits is spiraling out of control.

    Steve did a post on the inability of some Nay’s MP’s to understand maths..

  75. Pascal's bookie 75

    Tane Meanwhile, Matthew Hooton well and truly jumps the shark

    Don’t he but, and you see he ends up giving props to dear old Bryce, who supports him in comments. Sheesh.

  76. No kidding Vto! Thats one side of the argument. However the prinicple of limited liability has come at a huge price of the many who have been abused and just plain ripped off. Protection of the unconcionalbe is not the role of the law. It is not the role of the law to put above all else, economic interests of a few at the expense of what is right and decent. Whats more what I think is fooooolish, is your patronising and misrepresentation of what I said. I was not calling for the end of limited liability, but a strengthening of the legistlation to enable the judiciary to do what they ought to.

  77. rave 77

    Self-owning businesses? Do you mean like farmers co-ops? Did you notice that while we are making wish lists, the co-ops are being bought up by listed companies one of which is part-owned but not self-owned by John Key?

    The semi-nationalisation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Fay by the US federal reserve gives the lie to all the profiteers that they owe their profits to the market. The market only exists because the public subsidises the private losses.

    Since this fictional nationalisation does not actually mean that ordinary people as workers and taxpayers can now self-own FM and FF we need real public shareholding.

    Steve’s proposal that more state investment based on a Sovereign Fund is one model of actually putting public property rights in the hands of ordinary people, as opposed to using their meagre wages to keep paying rents and taxes to bale out the billionaires until they take back control.

    Hand in hand with this Steve is right to say we need more education and participation in politics so that the majority can actively take control over that public shareholding. That is, the ‘sovereign’ is not the bosses’ state masquerading as ‘public’, but the people who produce the wealth and now own it.

  78. vto 78

    and a more positive post… if labour gets a fourth term (heaven has forbid it btw) and continue along their recent direction then how about this to aim towards a fifth term;

    1. further easing of tax rates (remember when taxes are cut the money doesnt leave the system, it continues in a faster spin cycle and the multitude of other taxes hoover up extra through the extra spinnage).

    2. back off the nannyisms and trust in your fellow manwoman.

    3. do not rush laws through parliament.

    4. get Cullen to say something nice about rich people.

    5. take your hands off the electoral system. that is for the people, not the government.

    6. continue to be brave in foreign policy.

    7. etc

  79. “Why do we have governments that are so much less courageous than the voters’

    That’s because parties that want to please 35-50% of the voters are by nature conservative, trying to please everyone and not take any unnecessary risks (even ones with potentially great payoffs). If you want spice, in the MMP environment, you’re best to vote for a minor party like NZF, the Maori Party or the Greens, who only have to please their limited 3-10% constituency. Of course, the larger party is likely to resist their attempts to make things interesting, as we saw in 1996-1999 and 1999-2002, when two parties with opposing philosophies were paired. Weren’t those years fun?

    Wait for the next round of fireworks, and see another test of wills. Clark vs Norman/Fitzsimons? I hope they’re not going to be lambs to the slaughter, should their side carry the election.

  80. vto 80

    oh alexandra, who’s the patronising one? I responded to the simplistic nature of your comment in kind.

    Either way though – if you weaken that limited liability then you will reduce the risks people are prepared to take, with consequent consequentiality. Who wants to be a director of a company today? Ask Bryers – even he didn’t want to know, and he is a true crook.

    There are plenty of laws available to punish the naughty amongst us. The problem imo arises in enforcement and in caveat emptor.

  81. Paul Robeson 81

    Gee

    there was some interesting stuff there before that degenerated.

    Is Sarah (bless her cottonsofts) John Key? she seems to have some severe conflicts…She wants to be nice, but she wants to hate the left wing.

    She wants wages to be raised for teachers- the PPTA being one of the few surviving unions during the ECA – but she imagines a first term National government will do this. Perhaps.

    Very JK- cut taxes significantly, slash bureacracy and increase spending.

    I am more than a mite concerned that all these worthy social ideas are being put forth without some serious discussion of investment in public transport. The systems in our cities are sub-par.

    Apologies Patrick- somehow missed that.

    But are petrol prices likely to be lower, the same or much higher in 30 years? If we have a significant increase in no-car or recreation-car families will our infrastructure be able to cope?

  82. Janet 82

    I would like the new government to do some real thinking about promoting democracy, inclusion and participation for all citizens. Maybe a serious discussion about lowering the voting age to 16 or younger, and more use of citizens’ juries. It would be great to see all three NZ official languages taught from year 1 (that means te reo and NZ Sign) and the teaching of other languages encouraged. More emphasis on citizenship studies in and out of school (eg through TV discussions). The promotion of equity (that would include getting rid of child poverty and inequities in health, education etc). And discrimination of all kinds banned so eventually it becomes such an uncommon concept that legislation won’t be needed. That’s a start/

  83. Anita 83

    Janet,

    Thanks-you, I want to come live in your world! 🙂

  84. Owen Glenn 84

    [deleted – identity theft]
    [lprent: Just another idiot]

  85. Draco TB 85

    Bill:

    already exits. Its the Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1908. Workers own nominal (cant trade or accrue in value) shares. The workers are the owners.

    A quick read of that legislation indicates that it is not quite what I’m after. It’s also a great example of legislation that needs updating.

    VTO:

    Draco, your number 1 (at 6.35pm) would be a dream come true for all those wide-boys you no doubt have little time for. Make lotsa rules and distortions, make lotsa loopholes and contortions

    Would you clarify please?

    That is the whole point of the limited liability company. The limited liability. The legal structure more responsible for the creation of today’s wealthy society than almost any other.

    True, but we really need to question if we wish to continue that way considering that people are causing huge amounts of damage, making millions doing so and aren’t held responsible in any way. There are also other forms of investment available – not just the capitalist one.

    Rave:

    Self-owning businesses? Do you mean like farmers co-ops?

    Not really. Co-ops are reasonably good but they are owned by those in the co-op. A self-owned business is by itself but the control of that business would fall to it’s employees. Any profits after reinvestment would also go to the employees.

  86. r0b 86

    Free education.

    Proper public transport (as part of a range of measures to address climate change).

    State funding of political parties – every cent visible and publicly accountable (get private funding and influence out of the political process).

    A fifth term. Heh.

  87. vto 87

    Draco, I wondered whether that may have a little confusing. What I meant was that your suggestion was too riddled with potential problems. And the old truism that complications increase exponentially – make a rule, double the complexity, make two rules and multiply it by four, three rules and multiply it by nine.

    Too complex. Too many rules = too many loopholes.

    Th thought behind the idea is good but human nature being what it is it would get abused to high heaven and create distortions from here to contortionland.

    Re limited liability companies and the occasional damage – is it really that bad? Sure there are problems but perhaps some sort of measure would be appropriate first. I consider the benefits of the system as it is today outweigh any downsides. It would take serious and long deliberations before adjusting that particular setting imo, given the potential downside resulting from such interference.

  88. vto 88

    Owen Glenn is that really you?

    Good luck for tomorrow and give ’em heaps

  89. Owen Glenn 89

    [deleted – identity theft]
    [lprent: Just another idiot]

  90. Lew 90

    I guess, by the lack of punctuation and general incoherence, that `Owen Glenn’ here is in fact Rob.

    L

    [lprent: could be – now moderated to hell]

  91. vto 91

    excellent. all eyes will be on you.

    Did you sail your boat down?

  92. Owen Glenn 92

    [deleted – identity theft]
    [lprent: Just another idiot]

  93. vto 93

    oh dear. You can borrow mine – its an old beauty from the 1930’s but its survived afloat through every storm since. You may need such a proven rider on the storm while you’re here!

  94. jaymam 94

    Owen Glenn, if that’s really you, on what occasion did you first meet Helen Clark and not know who she was? I have the meeting recorded on tape.

  95. Dean 95

    Draco:

    “1.) 0% interest home loans for the home that you live in and would cover up to 100% of the value of the home. These would be funded from the reserve bank by the simple expedient of printing the money.”

    You do understand the concept of inflation, don’t you?

    Actually, I think this quote should be repeated back at you every time you post.

  96. Dan 96

    SP, congratulations on a great thread. The substance of peoples’ replies suggest the Nats mistake of being slow with policy is a bigger negative than they anticipated. With the exception of the bovver boys on the right, a whole raft of policies have been raised from across the political spectrum, most of them centre/ centre left with very little to frighten any NZ citizen. The idealism and humanity implied is great. Maybe that is the difference between the Nats and the rest: the Nats looking after self, those of the centre and left looking after community as well as self.

  97. Proctor 97

    While I’d love for student debt to be forgiven I’m thinking that this is one of those sweet fantasies that won’t actually be realistic.

    To be honest – I’d be pretty happy with a continuation of L/P/G’s current policy path, with perhaps more emphasis on sustainability.

    And the idea of raising teacher’s salaries by $10K – brilliant. Do it. I couldn’t be one but fully respect those that are mad enough to be a teacher.

  98. burt 98

    Dan

    That is complete poppycock. “the Nats looking after self, those of the centre and left looking after community as well as self.”

    Which part of driving productive, entrepreneurial people out of the country is good for the community? This so called ‘good for the community’ stated above is a pile of “wish list” BS. It’s like someone sitting down at home on Wed night with their ‘Big Wednesday’ ticket in hand saying ‘Then I’d buy this, then I’d buy that…’

    I ask one thing;

    1) Put the best interests of the public ahead of the best interests of the Labour party.

    Too much to ask?

  99. mondograss 99

    Progressively fund a teacher aide for each classroom, beginning with the decile 1 schools and going forward from there. Up to the schools whether the aide spends their time in a specific room, or working with certain specialist programmes or kids, but it would alleviate a huge drain on school operations grants\parents donations and would substantially improve the quality of primary school education by the simple expedient of allowing the teacher to spend more time teaching and less time having to manage the kids\keep them on task etc.

  100. Draco TB 100

    VTO:

    Too complex. Too many rules = too many loopholes.

    Th thought behind the idea is good but human nature being what it is it would get abused to high heaven and create distortions from here to contortionland.

    The problem with truisms is that they’re only partially true 😛
    Such a scheme could be kept extremely simple especially once it’s in place and available to everybody. I did consider that it would be open to abuse which is why I suggested the 5 year cool down and that it can only be applied to the house that you’re living in. These should effectively prevent speculation and everybody trying to buy up hundreds of houses to rent out.

    We do needs rules though and do have them so arguing that having some to do with home finance is going to be too complex is a little disingenuous.

    Re limited liability companies and the occasional damage – is it really that bad?

    Considering all the collapsing finance companies over the last couple of years can we say that it’s occasional?
    It’s not that simple of course but such systems are put there simply to protect people from taking full responsibility of their actions. If a person buys shares in a company that knowingly poisons a stream means that that person is responsible for that action even if they didn’t make that decision or even know that the decision had been made. That’s the nature of supporting actions by a company and by buying shares you are supporting those actions.

    I do find it amusing that people always go on about personal responsibility but then come up with lots of ways (limited liability, trusts, externalities etc) to avoid that responsibility.

    Dean:

    You do understand the concept of inflation, don’t you?

    Yes, I do. Any money printed by the reserve bank needs to be removed from the economy so that it remains inflation neutral. This, amazingly enough, is how the present banking system works. Ergo, this system really won’t make any significant difference to inflation if it’s introduced slowly which I said would be the case in the original post.

  101. Jared 101

    What I would like to see from the next government, not necessarily a labour led coalition.

    -Increased funding for Schools. The education system is severely under funded with unrealistic development programmes in place that schools cannot achieve under current funding levels without additional support. People chastise schools for asking for a donation, but many rely on donations for the developments that the government love to wank on about. If people want education to be truely free, then schools need more funding.

    -Lower taxes at the bottom. In many ways I envy the Australian Tax system where income up to $6000 isn’t taxed. Lower taxes would be nice overall, and I think there is certainly room to move further than Cullen is letting on. Borrowing to support tax cuts aren’t necessarily a bad thing either, considering the impact increased income would have on consumer spending and saving.

    -Renationalise public transport operators so that subsidised routes are not out to provide a profit to operators, but to only break even. Free public transport would be nice, but I would prefer a nominal fare that covers costs only.

    On that same note, I think there is far too much of a focus on rail within Auckland. Rail reaches primarily West and South only, and even then only those close to the rail feed onto the routes. Far more of the population cannot utilise rail efficiently, and a more effective option than Buses and rail needs to be looked at.

  102. Dean 102

    “Yes, I do. Any money printed by the reserve bank needs to be removed from the economy so that it remains inflation neutral. This, amazingly enough, is how the present banking system works. Ergo, this system really won’t make any significant difference to inflation if it’s introduced slowly which I said would be the case in the original post.”

    No Draco, I really don’t think you have thought your cunning plan through.

    What will happen to house prices?

    I can’t believe im debating “print more money!” with someone who believes it’s a good idea.

  103. John McCain 103

    [deleted – identity theft]
    [lprent: another idiot]

  104. John McCain 104

    [deleted – identity theft]
    [lprent: another idiot]

  105. Mausist 105

    I would like to see a programme to properly insulate every house that needs it. As George Darroch pointed out on PA system, this would help reduce energy use and lower the burden on the health system. It would also maintain the construction industry after the end of the housing boom, at least for a while, in the Keynesian stylee.

    There is no reason why anyone should be able to see their breath inside, during the day, in a home in New Zealand (unless they’re playing silly buggers with the freezer).

  106. RedLogix 106

    I can’t believe im debating “print more money!’ with someone who believes it’s a good idea.

    errmm…’printing money’ is exactly what the commercial ‘fractional reserve’ banking system does everytime it creates a mortgage.

    All Draco is suggesting is that perhaps the creation of money supply could be a public sector function, operating to benefit New Zealand rather than a privatised function that currently enriches the owners of several large Australian banks.

  107. Dan 107

    Burt, back your “poppycock” claim with some data. I am sure some are disallusioned businessmen, but the majority in my experience tend to be retirees, the young with a sense of adventure, and young married couples, all attracted by the advantages of the larger and more diverse economy in Australia. All are motivated by individual betterment. The prospect of higher wages in Australia also encourages individuals, but higher wages are not on National’s wish list.
    NZ still rates very highly for the ease of doing business. As many have already pointed out, there are a series of taxes and fees in Australia that mean apparent tax advantages are not so crash hot.

  108. vto 108

    Draco, re limited liability companies and the occasional fallout, you referred to the losses by many finance companies of late. Your implication is that these companies have been criminally run, leading to their failure.

    wrong wrong wrong. Sure there are one or two which appear to have been at the hands of rogues. But these rogues would be operating in business no matter the legal structures available to them. So the argument you make I dont think solves the problem.

    But further – there is some myth circulating out there in sillyland that these companies failed because of bad people at the helm. I tell you what they actually failed of (from very close personal experience).

    They failed because the punters all decided to pull their money out at once. It is called a run. Few financial insitutions ever survive them.

    So quite frankly the problem rests at the feet of the depositers. Their own greed saw them get excited at the prospect at the thought of an extra 2% per annum over a bank (who cares about the risk ay?), and then now their own fear (other end of the spectrum from greed) sees them acting like lemmings in taking all their money out.

    That is what has happenned.

    It is of course very sad when people lose their savings. But they should take responsibililty (or their advisers). The info on the business these finance companies transacted was all there for the checking.

    Anyway, there are mullions of companies operating in NZ. What is the proportion that cause problems or are rogues? And once you have that answer, ask yourself whether anything would change with whatever new structure is put in in replacement.

    You would do considerably more damage than good by sheeting home excessive liability, especially to the shareholders.

  109. vto 109

    So Draco, it logically follows (re finance company failures) from the facts of the situation and your line of reasoning that liability for the losses should be sheeted home to those responsible, namely the depositors. Not just for their own losses, but those of the finance companies and those of fellow depositors. Can’t have you cake and eat it too…

  110. Lampie 110

    Correct me if I’m wrong. National now supporting “anti-smacking” bill unless evidence suggests otherwise. I thought they were against it? Any case, another “me too” and “cover my ass” no leadership example from John Key.

    Mr Key, for God sake, actually show what you stand for, grow some balls!!

  111. Bill 111

    All this talk of company structure leading to potential rip off scenarios; of externalising (socialising )costs while privatising profits…simple solution.

    A production and distribution system sans market.

    Anita wished for it and many others have implied it with their wish to end child poverty and other inequities.

    If you go here http://www.zcommunications.org/znet/topics/parecon and actually read through it, you’ll see that almost everything on the various wish lists is achievable.

    The cause of inequity and impoverishment and the one common underlying factor in all those things people wish to see changed, eradicated or improved is the market.

  112. A Republic Advisory Committee 2008 – 2010, election of the Governor-General by public nominations in 2011, commitment to a referendum on a republic by the year 2015, prompting the debate on the issue, entrenchment of the existing statutory constitutional framework…

  113. Janet 113

    I see that John Key is now going to take money away from the Families Commission which is doing some world leading social research on the nature of families and give it to Christian parenting groups!!!!

    Let’s get back to some idealism and hope for humanity.

  114. Bill 114

    Christian parenting groups? For real? So Maori and a ‘million and one’ other kinship arrangements are…what? Oh dear.

    Actually, what precisely the fuck IS a ‘christian parenting group’ when it’s at home?

  115. vto 115

    it’s where you teach christians how to behave properly

  116. Bill 116

    vto

    and proselytise those who are not Christian; instil in them a ‘proper’ morality; have them ‘adopt’ Christian norms of behaviour…sounds very ‘lost generation-ish’ to me; very ‘civilising’.

    Janet

    you have a source?

  117. Pascal's bookie 118

    “it’s where you teach christians how to behave properly”

    lolz

  118. Felix 119

    And Key may well be kissing Peter Dunne’s support goodbye with that ill-advised bit of sucking up to the chrissos.

    If I were a Key supporter I’d be so disappointed with his performance.

  119. Bill 120

    What the hell is Key on about when he says “The current Government won’t touch them because they’ve got a Christian-based perspective?”

    According to the website :- The Families Commission undertakes research, provides policy advice, consults the public and provides information to families and those who work with them

    Parents Inc runs programmes.

    Besides,Parents inc are certainly not short of money. They have a pile of sponsors… After the major corporate sponsors AMI, Toyota etc it has 50 organisations giving it grants

  120. Bill 121

    “The current Government won’t touch them because they’ve got a Christian-based perspective?’

    During the year ended 31 March 2008,
    $75,524 was received from Community Organisation Grants Scheme,
    $261,455 from Aoraki Polytechnic (Community Education Funding) and $100,000 from the Lotteries Grants

    (https://www.parentsinc.org.nz/assets/PDFs/Annual-Report-2008.pdf)

    Wish the government wouldn’t touch me to the same degree!

  121. RedLogix 122

    It’s all very easy being cynical about religion, the history of all of them is an extraordinary thing… but an honest appraisal also reveals an enduring core of those ancient bulwarks, love, hope and charity.

    Yes those words do sound very old fashioned, redundant even in this modern age… but let me for a moment indulge in some broad hand waving. All human society has three deep roots, the material (science/technology/commerce), the philosophical (the political/legal dimension) and the spiritual (religion/arts) entwined together.

    Science without faith becomes cold and dehumanised.

    Politics without faith descends into tyranny.

    Faith without science is mere superstition.

    To my mind, a just and healthy society happens when these three forces act in a mutual, synergistic balance, each evolving as civilisation progresses. From the material and philosophic perspective the modern world has experienced massive upheaval and change over the last few centuries, we have abandoned many old ideas and institutions that we once taken as unquestioned givens by our ancestors (eg the divine right of kings, feudalism, a physical heaven and hell). Modern science has given us a wholly different view of material reality and our modern notions of human rights and justice drive our political systems in ways quite unimaginable to the kings and emperors of old.

    Equally the old churches and institutions of religion have fallen away, and I suggest, are yet to be replaced with a form that is both intellectually and ethically robust to minds and hearts of future generations.

  122. higherstandard 123

    Bill

    “Parents Inc. receives no direct government funding although a portion of our funding revenue comes from Aoraki Polytechnic (community education grants) as well as from New Zealand Lottery Grants and Community Organisation Grants Scheme (COGS).

    From their report it appears this accounts for 7% of their funding.

    Regardless of this I’m not sure from the comments above whether commenters are arguing that money diverted from the parents commission to groups such as Parents Inc is a good thing or a bad thing.

    In my opinion they appear to do a very fine job and would merit direct government funding.

  123. Draco TB 124

    VTO:

    Your implication is that these companies have been criminally run, leading to their failure.

    That was not my intention. I was trying to show that when you support the actions of a company by buying shares in that company that you should take the bad (losses) with the good (profits). Limited liability prevents this allowing people to have their cake and eat it to. Depositer runs have been a fact of banking since the fractional reserve banking system was introduced.

    Like I said earlier – the present system has got us here but is it the system that we need to go into the future with? I’m saying that it isn’t due to the fact that it collapses regularly (due to peoples greed and stupidity as you pointed out) and is failed system due to requiring poverty to work as well as it does.

  124. r0b 125

    Good stuff RL – thanks for that.

  125. higherstandard 126

    RedLogix

    I hope you don’t take this as being too patronising but that’s a brilliant comment well done.

  126. outofbed 127

    So Key abolishes family commission, bye bye United future
    so Key abolishes Maori seats, bye bye Maori Party
    So Key won’t work with Douglas, bye bye Act
    So Key won’t work with Peters, bye bye NZF
    Just the Greens and Progressive left then eh ?

  127. Vanilla Eis 128

    oob: You forgot the possibility of a grand coalition of Labour and National – but who gets to be PM?

  128. higherstandard 129

    Elvis

  129. vto 130

    Draco, acknowledged to some extent but to sheet home losses and liabililty to shareholders is completely contrary to the whole purpose of limied liability companies. It has some downside, as you poiint out, but it is responsible for ridiculously more good than bad. Just look at how the (naughty) capitalist system has developed since its invention, and the increased wealth, across the board, since then.

  130. Bill 131

    HS
    I don’t quite know how direct government funding would work. Isn’t that the function of COGS etc…to funnel funding and attempt to create a spread of such funding?

    Do any community groups get direct government funding, faith based or otherwise?

    I ask because I don’t know. I’d be surprised if that was the case.

    Parent inc have access to tax payers money and, I’d assume, have access to the Families Commission same as any other orgs based around family issues.

    JK was being disingenuous….again.

  131. bill brown 132

    “Science without faith becomes cold and dehumanised.”

    Science with faith is not science.

  132. rave 133

    I would like the members of the Labour led government and all its supporters to read this moving statement by the Cuban Celia Hart who was killed in a car crash not long after she wrote it.
    It is about how global warming is visiting the ‘demon’ onto the Caribbean and how Cuba’s revolution gives it at least some basis for human resistance.

    http://www.marxmail.org/msg48175.html

  133. Roger 134

    Just four things:

    Extend ECE to Playcentres so that all NZQA-approved ECE providers have access to 20 hours free pre-school education

    Make kiwisaver compulsory and use more of the savings here in NZ to reduce reliance on overseas capital

    Optional Income Splitting for tax purposes to provide greater flexibility for parents and

    End Child Poverty by 2017.

  134. Robinsod 135

    Make kiwisaver compulsory and use more of the savings here in NZ to reduce reliance on overseas capital

    Agreed but also make the rate variable under the reserve bank act and use it as one of the levers to control inflation.

  135. Nedyah Hsan 136

    A bounty for those frakking possums. $10 a skin. Possum fur is warm, well regarded, and they’re a complete pest. Screw PETA.

    Abolishment of Family Trusts being exempt from bankruptcy proceedings. The assets in the trust would have to have got there somehow.

    Set minimum jail terms. No parole at all. Manslaughter = 15 years minimum.

    No extras in prison – no tv, no sky, basic food. Basically make prison as unattractive as possible, while still treating prisoners like humans.

    Education: Graded pay scales for teachers 1 -3 years $50,000 4- 7 years $70,000 8 – 12 years $100,000. Every four years in teaching, the pay increases by $10,000
    Increase state funding to schools.

    Disestablish PHARMAC and set up a new drug approval authority with a specific mandate to test new drugs in NZ and not wait for overseas testing.

    Bring back the NZ Safety Authority. Our safety standards used to be the envy of the world. When it was disestablished , the quality of products sold to us dropped drastically. E.g. an egg beater that was bought in 1975 still goes perfectly. An EB bought in 2007 fell apart after 6 months.

    Drop personal tax to 29% maximum.
    Remove LAQC tax advantage. Allow people to be eligible for rebate of up to 30% of interest charged on a personal mortgage (must be in personal names, not in trust or other)

    Of course, it’s all just a pipedream

  136. Anita 137

    Nedyah Hsan,

    Disestablish PHARMAC and set up a new drug approval authority with a specific mandate to test new drugs in NZ and not wait for overseas testing.

    Pharmac is the funding agency, Medsafe is the approval authority. I think you’re saying you want to replace Medsafe.

  137. jbc 138

    Nedyah Hsan – an eclectic wish-list. Interesting.

    Education: Graded pay scales for teachers 1 -3 years $50,000 4- 7 years $70,000 8 – 12 years $100,000. Every four years in teaching, the pay increases by $10,000
    Increase state funding to schools.

    I’ll agree that many teachers should be paid as the valued professionals that they are (ie: a whole lot more) – but I think that pay increases for seat-warming longevity is not a good recipe for educational outcomes (or for retaining good staff in any organisation for that matter). The smart/keen ones will be lured/pushed away long before.

    I think that an excellent teacher (no matter what their age or experience) who motivates their students and lifts their attainment year after year is worth more than 10 stale old cranks. At least that’s what I’d want for my kids anyway.

  138. Bill 139

    Somewhere up this thread there were comments about JK intentions on the family commission.

    So, after flip flopping he says:-

    “Some of the advocacy undertaken by the Families Commission has been important, but some in our view has also been unnecessary and I would like to see more spent on the coalface,” he told reporters.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/4686768a6160.html

    Except the Families Commission does not ‘do’ advocacy. From their site…

    “Under the Act, we are mandated to focus on families generally, and cannot advocate on behalf of individual families or cases.”

  139. Most of the items on the (sane) wishlists above are already Alliance policy, and fully budgeted too. So why not give your support to a party that wants the same things you do, instead of futilely hoping Labour will change?

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    5 days ago
  • Praise after first firearms collection event
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    5 days ago
  • New Police constables deployed to regions
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    2 weeks ago