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307 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 1846457 14-Aug-2017 15:40
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My comment on Bill Gates was complimenting him for his generosity We also have very rich people in NZ Who give generously to assist others.

 

There have been examples of this recently.

 

But we still have many who don't see the value in assisting those less fortunate and who are very critical of the way they live

 

and have never "walked in their Shoes" and seem to want to build their own personal wealth well beyond what is really necessary.

 

We all saw the complaints about the Green Party Co Leader and her fraudulent behaviour  and bayed for her downfall but we turn a blind eye 

 

to those who have be able to dodge or find ways around the tax system which has cost the country far more than she did according to various articles.

 

Being able to set up Trusts and take benefit of the system which many of those on lower incomes cant afford the costs and don't have the income to carry out such procedures is an

 

example of a system which benefits some more than others.

 

I dont pretend to have the solutions apart from education but this is also not readily available for those in the lower socio economic groups. Look at the cost of University these days.

 

I now rest my case and would like to see what others have to say and also where they stand. Good to take part in such topics...


774 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 1846464 14-Aug-2017 15:53
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@gulfa  Good chat :-)

 

...the challenge when tackling the ultra-wealthy is that they (and their fortunes) are inherently mobile.  By punitively taxing them, you merely drive them offshore.   You could argue that as being a "good thing".  You could also argue that having people like Owen Glenn or Mark Dunajtschik in NZ has a profoundly positive effect.

 

 

 

@MikeB4 Yep - the last one was indeed Sir Keith.  (1960-1972)


 
 
 
 


8914 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1846468 14-Aug-2017 16:01
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6FIEND:

 

 

 

This is a commonly rolled out statement...  Have you got any data or reference to back up the assertion that inequality is increasing?  The most frequently used measure of income inequality shows this flat or slightly decreasing over the past 20 years.

 

Reference: The New Zealand Initiative

 

 

 

 

 

I don't like that chart - nor "spin" from assorted "think tanks". (Nor do I like the NZ Herald - all that chart probably shows is their recent decline to click-baity headlines)

 

For a start, the OECD country with the lowest Gini coefficient is Iceland with ~0.24.  

 

Starting the Y axis at 0 is a bit disingenuous IMO.  

 

Here's a chart using raw government data - with a bit less "spin" applied - and it doesn't look quite as rosy.

 


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Ultimate Geek
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  # 1846480 14-Aug-2017 16:13
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Fred99:

 

... it doesn't look quite as rosy.

 

 

Nor does it show any significant widening of the inequality gap since the turn of the century.


8914 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1846514 14-Aug-2017 16:47
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6FIEND:

 

Fred99:

 

... it doesn't look quite as rosy.

 

 

Nor does it show any significant widening of the inequality gap since the turn of the century.

 

 

But it certainly does since the reforms of the '80s - there's been a profound increase in income inequality.

 

The last Labour government stepped right to centre, the present National government stepped left to centre.  Some minor tweaking (which made almost no difference at all to most people's lives) but otherwise business as usual - along a path that needs to be at least halted - preferably reversed.

 

 




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  # 1852990 26-Aug-2017 14:40
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I still don't know who to vote for. If the Greens seem close to 5%, I will probably vote for them because I don't want their voice to be silenced. If TOP gets there, I might consider them, but it would be an effort. If NZ First becomes the third party, I definitely won't vote for them because I can't stand Winnie and I don't trust him. They also have some real f-wits in their ranks.

 

I harbour both libertarian and progressive sentiments, which makes it really difficult for me to choose. I could not imagine myself ever voting for ACT, but David Seymour supports some policies I strongly agree with and no-one else dares touch, like assisted dying. It is a quandary. Fortunately, not too great, because ACT doesn't have a snowball's chance in hell of getting more than one MP so I wouldn't waste my vote on them anyway.

 

None of the other minor parties are worth considering. If it becomes a two-horse race, I might vote for Labour for the first time ever in my life because I would rather see Jacinda Ardern on Parliament TV for three years than Bill English, but I probably won't unless something else spectacular happens (and with this election, anything is possible). But I never vote for mainstream parties. I prefer to support viable small parties, because they help keep the big ones honest. In spite of Mike Hosking, I have voted for the Maori party in the past but this time I may just withhold my vote altogether. Or maybe I will dangle it for whoever is prepared to go to the trouble to convince me they deserve it. Come out for tea, Jacinda. If you are prepared to do that, you can have my vote. Yeah, you too, Bill English. I have to be fair.

 

 

 

 

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


SJB

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  # 1853034 26-Aug-2017 17:05
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I don't like the way each party drip feeds the electorate the various lollies on offer. I lose track of what each of them are offering and I bet some of the promises are quietly swept under the carpet during a governments term. Also they can announce policy so close to polling day that there is no real opportunity to question it.

 

I would much prefer it if they adopted the UK system and each party published a manifesto of everything they were going to do in government at the start of the whole campaign. That way it's easy to compare the offerings and to have an in depth discussion about them instead of bouncing from one policy to the next as it is here. You also have something definitive to beat them with when they are in power and go back on something they promised. 

 

I probably won't bother to vote this time. I'm not particularly fussed which of the major parties gets in and it looks like the Greens are out of the picture. Actually I might consider them if they just stuck to environmental policy but they are a complete turn off for me when they bang on about social issues. There are other parties who can do that.

 

Ardern looks a bit lightweight at the moment to me and a term as opposition leader could set her up nicely as a really effective PM. And I don't even recognise most of the shadow cabinet. At least with the Nats you know who and what you are getting.

 

 


 
 
 
 


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  # 1853148 27-Aug-2017 07:10
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Has this web site come up in this discussion yet?
http://newzealand.isidewith.com/

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  # 1853163 27-Aug-2017 08:09
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NZF wont win 61 or 62 seats, I think I can safely make that claim. If you voted National and they win, you get a National Govt. Same for Labour if they win. What if you voted NZF? You dont know whether thats a National or Labour Govt. Quite bizarre. 


127 posts

Master Geek


  # 1854542 29-Aug-2017 08:58
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Wiggum:

 

 

 

"Poverty" will always exist in new Zealand, because of its very definition. The solution you describe above will not get rid of "poverty"

 

"Poverty as defined in New Zealand are the households that make less than 60 per cent of the median disposable income."

 

So think about that. It means no matter how rich the country is and no matter how high the median household we will always have a class of people that are described as living in poverty.

 

 

This statement has been playing on my mind for some time and I've had several discussions with people go no where because I haven't been able to get my head around how this definition could be right. It turns out it is right but the subtle difference between median and mean makes a huge difference here - especially with the growing gap between upper and lower classes.

 

This site does a good job of explaining how one word makes a huge difference and why that is one of the main definitions of poverty used: http://www.inequality.org.nz/why-the-poverty-line-is-valid-and-265000-children-really-are-in-poverty/

 

*EDIT - Typo




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  # 1854654 29-Aug-2017 11:33
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There are lies, damned lies and statistics. I don't take arguments that play with statistical comparisons very seriously anyway. My definition of poverty is not having enough for the basics of a decent life - adequate food and shelter, proper clothes for the kids, enough extra for minor luxuries. To someone without enough for these things, it doesn't make a blind bit of difference how much the richest have, or how little the poorest. If you are going hungry, playing with numbers doesn't help to fill your stomach.

 

There are people who want to blame the poor for being poor. This is like the old Calvinist idea that those who are well-off must be more worthy because they have been blessed by God. This makes  it easy not to have to feel guilty for not helping the less fortunate. After all, it is their own fault! So we get media images of inarticulate knuckle-walkers queuing up for their benefit to buy alcohol and tobacco while their feral kids help themselves to the neighbours' possessions. This kind of thing may satisfy some primal urge of the self-righteous, but it doesn't help those in real need.

 

I don't doubt there are some who take advantage of the system. There always are. But these are not representative of the majority, and pretending they are is disrespectful of those who truly are disadvantaged.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


1199 posts

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  # 1854719 29-Aug-2017 12:27
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caminham:

 

Wiggum:

 

 

 

"Poverty" will always exist in new Zealand, because of its very definition. The solution you describe above will not get rid of "poverty"

 

"Poverty as defined in New Zealand are the households that make less than 60 per cent of the median disposable income."

 

So think about that. It means no matter how rich the country is and no matter how high the median household we will always have a class of people that are described as living in poverty.

 

 

This statement has been playing on my mind for some time and I've had several discussions with people go no where because I haven't been able to get my head around how this definition could be right. It turns out it is right but the subtle difference between median and mean makes a huge difference here - especially with the growing gap between upper and lower classes.

 

This site does a good job of explaining how one word makes a huge difference and why that is one of the main definitions of poverty used: http://www.inequality.org.nz/why-the-poverty-line-is-valid-and-265000-children-really-are-in-poverty/

 

*EDIT - Typo

 

 

Its no good having discussions about poverty when everybody seems to have different definitions as to what the word means.

 

My definition, and as discussed here before clashes with other peoples definitions. I have been to places where I have witnessed real poverty. Its heart wrenching, its sickening, especially when witnessing kids bearing the brunt of it. I believe that this has educated me up on the matter quiet considerably. IMO poverty is the lack of basic essentials to live and/or the state of being extremely poor. In other words, without help, death. Poverty always includes most of the following, lack of running water, lack of a roof over ones head, and a severe lack of food. Its got nothing to do with a lack of education, a moldy house, a lack of school shoes, and/or lack of transportation etc.

 

Now I'm not denying that unfortunately we have some very poor people in NZ. The important thing to remember is that there is a big difference between being poor (even extremely poor), and to living in poverty. Anybody who tries to convince me otherwise is going to find it extremely hard, especially because a loaf of bread here in NZ can cost as little as $1.

 

Unfortunately the word seems to be used too frequently nowadays, especially by politicians in the hope of gaining support.

 

On the subject of inequality, there would be a huge problem if some people were living in real poverty, and we had the filty rich. Countries like this exist today (South Africa, Mexico, Chile are examples). All worth a visit if you want to experience real poverty! In NZ we don't have nowhere near the same levels of "poverty", but we base our assumptions on our median disposable income. This is very incorrect, as as stated before. We will then always have poverty. IMO there is nothing really wrong with financial inequality either, just as long as some people are not living in real poverty, the world will always have the poor. Lets just try and rid the world of real poverty first, because that's where our support is most needed.


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  # 1854722 29-Aug-2017 12:29
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Rikkitic:

 

My definition of poverty is not having enough for the basics of a decent life - adequate food and shelter, proper clothes for the kids, enough extra for minor luxuries.

 

 

Minor luxuries? Decent life? You need to get out and go do some traveling. Go wisen up to what real poverty is, or check the dictionary.


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  # 1854729 29-Aug-2017 12:39
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Well, the campaign promises are mana from heaven. Flowing thick and fast. I'm due a new lawnmower, maybe there will be a campaign promise for that too. On a serious note though, is it tit for tat, are these all real policy promises? Not saying they aren't good things, but it annecdotally appears to be throw money at the people month


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  # 1854730 29-Aug-2017 12:40
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I am still undecided





Mike
Retired IT Manager. 
The views stated in my posts are my personal views and not that of any other organisation.

 

There is no planet B

 

 


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