Posts tagged National


2011 Budget – my black and white take


So Bill English of the National Govt has released his third budget.

Rather un-election year like since it isn’t the major spend up that we have seen in the last 20 years or so in election year.

Everyone has given their opinion so far:

Anyway .. here is my black and white take on it.

The Good The Bad
Financially prudent Lack of vision – how is the govt going to GROW the economy
About the right balance of “give” and “take” One could say some of the big issues are still not resolved – student debt, health care, superannuation etc.  Although in fairness this is only term one, and on some of these issue there is small movement in the right direction (eg student debt).
Good to see new TARGETED health and education spend.
Partial asset sales with a Govt majority (50%+) shareholding.  Good to see this happens AFTER the next election, so we get to vote on it

Overall I give it a sold B. Can’t give it an A since there is no long term vision.

I think the media got all the headlines wrong about the budget, but that’s not new is it?   Focusing on what was cut, or that “middle NZ hurt” isn’t the main story.  The main story is about returning to the black one year earlier than planned, all while investing 5billion extra cash for the rebuild of Christchurch.

While talking about taxes, here’s a very informative resource (hat-tip: Kiwiblog) on where taxes actually go in NZ can be found here. Written by Mark Hansen – who blog about it here.

Oh, and I can’t really comment on the budget without posting this.  Key caned Goff (are we surprised?).  I am waiting for Labour to be a real opposition and talk about alternatives (rather than just “no don’t cut that”).

Black and White Version: Solid B for Bill.  The right balance, and economically prudent.  Needs work on vision (see me after class Bill).

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Labour and National – Recent Economic Policy Announcements


Both Labour and National have announced various economic policies for New Zealand over the least few days. (although the media seam more interested in Goff’s hair dye, maybe coz that’s more interesting?)

The mainstream media, and plenty of blogs give plenty of views and in depth commentary, so here’s my back and white take on them both.  Before I start the context needs to be set:

  • NZ (and most of the world) just out of a global recession
  • NZ borrowing $300m a week just to fund current activities
  • Govt expenditure as a % of GDP extremely high (ver 40%) due to massive growth in last 10 years (almost 50%)
  • NZ close to a downgrade from credit rating agencies due to high dept and future borrowing – something needs to be done (downgrade means higher interest rates in NZ – hits everyone).

Richard’s Black and White Summary

The summary Labour: Up to 1st $5,00 tax free Partial sale of selected Govt assets floated, as part of 2011 election policy
Good, bad, other? Stupid.  Aimed at vote catching. Interesting.  Novel.  Courageous even
The good Everyone gets some cash.

Frees up capital for other projects.

Being on selected assets ony , we know what we are voting for.

Means (ultimately) less borrowing.

The bad Not feasible.  It will cost 1.1billion, and even a new top tax will only collect in 30% of that.  The rest is made up with reducing tax evasion, but in fact introducing a new top tax bracket will only make tax avoidance happen more through income shifting.  remember Labour also has a policy of no GST on fruit and veges – costing a further 250 million in lost revenue.  We have to BORROW this!

Some wont like “selling stuff”.

In a perfect world we wouldn’t sell anything some would say, but I think AirNZ is a perfect example of how it can (and does) work well.

Feasibility? It isnt. Very.

Overall rating

(our of 5 stars)

Two stars (only coz some uninformed people will vote for it) Four stars

Black and White Version: Labour still has no vision.  National shows that you can put options to the people to vote on.

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