National “deliberately keep them” poor

I asked Metiria Turei for a clarification from a question put to her on Campbell Live:

@metiria Not clear from @CampbellLiveNZ - do you think National willfully neglect children and deliberately keep people poor?

Her response:

@PeteDGeorge @CampbellLiveNZ I think they deliberately keep them (min wage, benefits) The burden is borne by the kids.

This is similar to the implication from a recent question to John Key in Parliament:

Metiria Turei: When will the Prime Minister drop his inequality denial and admit that his policies are creating a growing class of people who sit at the bottom of the most unequal education system in the developed world?

I hear similar to this this often, to the extent that National and John Key hate the poor and hate kids.

How National’s rich mates are going to get richer by keeping everyone else poor has never been explained to me.

There will always be a political battle between encouraging business growth which will (hopefully) result in more jobs and better paying  jobs versus transferring wealth from the middle class and the rich to the poor.

We already do both, the argument is on what balance will work best.

National, like Labour, have an orthodox approach. Greens have a much more socialist ambition – Turei has talked about “equality recently in Turei on kids and inequality:

To have every citizen be deeply free – our institutions, economic, political, social need to be purposefully built to deliver equality.

Just making little tweaks in a band aid response to inequality is not good enough for our kids.

And if you suggest that this approach may be flawed and tweaks to the current approach might be less risky or less flawed you can get accused of hating the kids and hating the poor.

It’s going to be an interesting election year.

And if Labour, Greens and Mana (who are socialist as the Greens) get to form the next Government New Zealand could be in for an interesting experiment.

I hope we don’t end up like Greece. We may have to learn to say “oh σκατά!”

Government spoon fed

Greens play rich versus poor

Russell Norman is promoting a Capital Gains Tax in part by playing the rich versus poor card.

Capital gains tax would hit rich, not poor  (ODT)
Rich people benefit from not having to pay a capital gains tax, Green co-leader Russel Norman says.

Class politics like rich versus poor is dirty politics, and it often ignores complexities.

I think we should have a good look at the merits and drawbacks of a Capital Gains Tax, but rationally and not emotionally.

Dr Norman said the research highlighted those on lower incomes earned money from wages which were fully taxed while the largest proportion of capital gains was earned by those at the upper end of the income spectrum and this income was untaxed.

This ignores a number of things, including:

  • People on relatively low incomes also benefit from untaxed capital gains
  • Most people on high incomes pay much more tax than those on lower incomes already
  • Capital gains are often used to finance retirement, including health care and care of the elderly, which reduces costs to the state
  • “Rich” people benefiting from capital gains often use that money for a wider circle of people who aren’t “rich”, for example for children’s education, parent’s care

It’s far from being a simple rich versus poor argument. Argue for CGT on it’s merits, not by promoting rich envy.

Ironically Green voters tend to be reasonably well off people rather than poor people.

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