Saturday, December 16, 2017


It would be churlish not to give Labour's mini-budget a passing tick.   Grant Robinson was bequeathed a 'set of books' the envy of many countries and a lot different from the decade of deficits 'they' gifted  National back in 2008.   Add to that record low unemployment and healthy projected GDP growth and 'they' had considerable room for maneuver on the back of 'their' promise to reverse National's tax cuts legislated to take effect from 1 April 2018.    

Labour's budget was old style Labour.   'We' know better than you how to spend 'your' money.    And they certainly spread it around like pixie dust.    You would have to expect both Labour and the Greens to get a post-budget bounce in the polls based on the 'good feel' factor ... not so sure about Winston First although you might ague that they might also benefit from the winter power subsidy for recipients of NZ Superannuation clearly directed at placating the permanently bewildered NZF demographic upset at losing their tax cut. 

But lets look at the various spending initiatives and ask whether it's quality spending.   The answer has to be NO.    Take for example that winter power subsidy.   It's not targeted.   Every pensioner gets it whether they need it or not.   So perhaps someone can set out the justification for the likes of say Winston Peters to get it.   The man's on a salary of $334,734 plus a non taxable allowance of $16,980 plus his parliamentary superannuation which he accessed when he lost his seat in parliament estimated at $60,000 +/- plus his NZ Superannuation at $15,651 (now he's sorted that little problem out) for a total of $427,635+/-.    Why does someone earning $427,635 need a subsidy to help cover his winter power bills?    Answer, he doesn't.    Even the so called Working for Families tax credit scheme has abatement provisions built into it.    So, why not this?   

No-one can argue against targeted expenditure to meet an identified problem but untargeted government largesse is wrong and dumb particularly as the budget has an identified structural weakness in the very limited provision for public servant salary and wage increases over the next three years.   A government of the 'Left' is going to have its work cut out working through State employee expectations. 

Finished work yesterday.   The Veteran and Mrs Veteran are off to Lake Rotoiti shortly where we will celebrate our Golden Wedding anniversary.   Christmas eve in Terendak, Malaysia, 50 years ago and it still seems like yesterday.

Limited blogging between now and when we return.   Merry Christmas to all our readers and especially my blogger colleagues and may 2018 be all you want it to be.


Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Well done on your maiden half century, Vet. Fifty years is a long time to play a straight bat. May you both make many more runs.

pdm said...

Congratulations and Merry Christmas to you and Mrs Vet as well as all the best for 2018.

Noel said...

There is talk that MBIE whose focus was business under national is to have it's Divisions (formerly Ministries) as stand alones but under the umbrella of MBIE.
Wonder if that will reduce these costs

George said...

Have a good one

J Bloggs said...

Congratulations to you both!! May you have a splendid holiday season and a wonderful 2018!