Picking apart the ‘promises’ of this election

November 6, 2011 Chilling_Silence Personal Rantings

Disclaimer: I’m (apparently) quite a right-winged political supporter, though I’ve found that pretty much everything Colin Craig and the Conservative Party does seems to fit pretty darn closely to how I feel on social / political issues (Most of which my religion seems to heavily influence my feelings upon them also, as well as what I’d call ‘common sense’, but alas I digress). I voted National last year, just so you know …

NOTE: This doesn’t take into account prior broken promises from either party, I don’t really care about that right now. This is just a quick look at promises that are already “broken”, before they’ve even been made.


I’ve noticed some terrible misconceptions going around about this years election. I figure it’s worth quickly clearing some of them up and setting the record straight. Some of them are pretty stupid little oversights, others are just outright wrong and retarded.

The first and most appallingly obvious blunder is by the Labour party. Fact of the matter is it’s the total opposite from the truth:

Here they’re standing for a “fairer” tax system “for all”. What they’re really doing is appealing to the masses by promising cuts for the better majority of people, thereby hoping to win voters, even though they’re lying about what they’re doing. It’s not fairer for all. In fact it’s the opposite. It’s making those who already work their asses off and therefore pay more tax (Because they earn more) even more ‘punished’ because they will have to pay more tax under this Labour regime. Not only that but Labour are wanting to target family trusts and other things that higher income earners have used at times to balance their tax to the rate of 33%, and scrap that so more high-income earners pay even more in tax yet again.

Figures shown here on Kiwiblog show that under 10% of households are paying 70% of the nations taxes. Yet, under this Labour promise to make a fairer system for all (Presuming that fairer means that everybody pays the same percentage), they’re taking everybody for a joy-ride. It’s not going to be fairer. It’s going to appeal to the mass-suckers who take it at face value and hopefully will win them some votes. Clever, but not honest.

Then, we keep going a bit further ahead and look at “Removing GST from fresh Fruit & Veggies“.

Terrible idea, end of story.

According to a few places, families spend between $10 and $30 a week on Fresh Fruit & Vegetables. When I was initially running the numbers through my own head, thinking back to when I was living at home with a family of 8, I thought that $40 would have been a ‘conservatively high amount’. So if we stick with $40 and presume you buy some incredibly expensive fruit and veggies, like Strawberries when they’re out of season or whatever, you’re going to save yourself around $6 a week. True, that’s going to add up to just over $300 a year, however there are a few arguments against it:

1) Those not buying fresh fruit & veggies are likely buying other foods for the convenience, such as fast-food, or frozen veggies, and not about to switch to save a couple of cents here and there.

2) The administration costs of figuring out what is and isn’t will arguably also put up other prices.

3) I think it’s funny how Goff has been on the other side of the fence for some 20-odd years about removing GST (Saying it’s not going to increase the purchasing of items by those who need it most, nor is it effective because GST is a “one size fits all system), and has only recently “switched sides” on the matter, in order to win votes. It’s a shallow & flawed promise at best.


Mana party are promising “Jobs for all” on their billboards.

I was out of work about 18 months ago and seriously considering getting “on the benefit”. I attended a class where I had to watch a 15 minute video that basically says “Yeah we’re here to help you get a job!”. Awesome! Then, the guy comes back in to the room, says “Right there’s jobs up here on this corkboard, and several thousand down the back on those stacks of paper”. Taking a stab in the dark, I figure there’d be close to 10,000 jobs.

The paper had a few details, where the job was, what it was doing, and if you needed any qualifications. Most would provide training on the job.

Now I work in IT, I’m a computer guy, and I’m not physically the most “fit” person in the world. Weedy is how I’ve been described at times. Still, I can lift a brick, if I had to do brick-laying. I could wake up at 4AM to work in a bakery. I’m patient and responsible, so I could work with special-needs kids after-school part-time too. But instead they sat me down, asked what sort of job I wanted, and told me they would phone me in a week or two and see if any jobs in IT had come up. Thankfully I found a job a few days later on my own.

There were two things that amazed me:

1) I was able to and fully within “my rights”, as it were, to turn down all those jobs and still qualify for a benefit. Simply because I didn’t want to get up at 4AM to go work in the local bakery.

2) About 7-8 of the 10 people in the room with me at the time didn’t even bother to get up and look at any of the jobs on offer. They were just there for the free handout.

Where am I going with this?

Well there’s a few things I see wrong with this picture. The main one being the promise of “Jobs for all”. The jobs are already there, they’re just not being taken. They don’t have to be taken and you still get a free handout, which in itself is wrong. If you’re going to be getting a hand-out, you should be actively trying the jobs. If you CAN do it, you should do it. None of this “Nah I don’t feel like waking up at 4AM to work at the bakery”. No, you shouldn’t get to pick and choose. You’re capable of waking up at that time, and whilst it may be a bit of an adjustment, and it may mess with your social life for a little bit, it’s a job and you do it anyway, and you get paid for it.

Which is what irks me about the likes of Labour (And other lazy buggers sitting at home) dogging the shake-up of the welfare system proposed by National.

There’s a ton of jobs there already, just waiting to be filled. If people weren’t so picky about the work they were doing, then it would be fine if a solo stay-at-home-mother who’s kids all go off to primary school went out for 2-3 hours during the day and worked part-time. But instead, people have become so apathetic & complacent that the sheer prospect of working is a nightmare. Welcome to the real world.


Owning our future, and the sale of state assets

This one really irks me, but it’s being tossed around so much and it’s incredibly misleading.

Lets work it out.

According to Labour in their YouTube video, it’s around 300 million dollars a year, these assets bring in.

If we can sell up to 49% of them for a conservative 6 billion, that’s the equivalent of 20 years worth of income (However because the ‘state’ will still own 51%, you could argue we’ll still retain 51% of that 300 million, equating the payback time to 40 years).

How much does this country borrow each week, in interest alone? Apparently we borrow 380 million every week .. Yet these so-called “Assets” don’t even provide that in a whole entire year!?

What’s wrong with keeping a majority share-holding (Including powers of veto) but allowing 3rd party overseas investors an interest in these assets? They’re still technically majority-owned by New Zealanders as they currently are.

When you look at it like that, why WOULDN’T you want to sell them off?


First $5,000 tax-free

What’s the point in this? It’ll put around $1500 a year into your pocket at max, but they’re going to be increasing the amount higher-income earners earn by around $9,000 a year. What incentive is that to earn more money when you’re going to be taxed harder for it? There’s a reason why the supposed “Top of the top” don’t pay tax, because they’re clever enough to earn so much, they’re also clever enough to know they’re being royally screwed, and would be even more-so under Labour.

The reason that the top tax-bracket was brought down was to decrease the incentive to avoid tax entirely.

So why the first $5,000 tax-free? It’s a copy-cat of Australia where the first $6,000 is tax-free. That’s all.

How will that be paid for? By taxing other people more. “Fairer for all”? I think not.


Increasing the minimum wage from $13 an hour to $15 an hour

How is this a good idea?

A young teenager pushing trolleys doesn’t specifically deserve to be earning $15 an hour.

What about flipping burgers? What’s wrong with starting out on $13 an hour?

Initial reports have indicated that many smaller businesses in NZ would either have to increase their prices in order to offset this (Increasing the general cost of living), or have to lay off staff where the business is no longer able to sustain that. That means where a company can currently hire 7 people on the minimum wage, they could now only hire 6 for the same price. That’s a decrease in productivity of around 14% for the same amount of money.

IF you’re earning the minimum wage, doing something like flipping burgers, then do something about it. Take one of the management courses that McDonalds offer in order to better qualify yourself so you’re more suited to a wider variety of jobs, or don’t do a job that’s only “worth” the minimum wage?

It’s intended to “help low income earners”, granted, but it doesn’t look like it will. Worst-case scenario, people will lose their jobs over it. If a small team has a budget for 7 people, they’ve now only got a budget for 6 people. That means somebody has to go.

People losing jobs, vs people struggling on the current minimum wage. You do the math, it doesn’t add up.


Scrapping the “90-day employee trial” law

Labour wants to scrap the 90-day trial law.

Basically if you suck as an employee, your boss can give you the sack. They don’t have to have any sort of rhyme or reason. Maybe you comb your hair in a way they don’t like, it doesn’t matter, they can sack you.

However, if you’re a good employee, you’ve basically got nothing to worry about. If a company is willing to sack people willy-nilly over nothing within the first 90 days of a staff members employment, then you don’t want to work for that company anyway. You want to work for one that will value you.

Basically this law is about giving more people a chance, knowing that if it doesn’t work out, you can give them the boot. It means that companies don’t have to worry about being “locked in” with an employee right from the word go.

Why scrap it?

Basically the only reason you’d want this law scrapped was if you were a lazy bastard with nothing to offer in the role (eg you’re not suited for the role you applied for). Unfortunately it’s these people who also seem to bleat the loudest about the likes of this, and the Welfare reformation. Doesn’t mean they’re right in their noise though.


Anyway, I’m sure there’s more, but for a starting point, you can see there’s a *lot* of crazy ideas being flung about, and some of them have not had much thought, logic or reasoning put into them.

Elections 2011, Jobs, minimum wage, national debt, own our future,

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