Sam Morgan

Sam Morgan’s high horse just died

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Sam I’m-so-green Morgan is all over Twitter all day every day telling people to live better, cleaner and more profitable lives.

And then he smokes out Wanaka

Thick smoke spanned the hillside directly behind Wanaka’s upmarket Heaton Park and Far Horizon subdivisions and several Mt Aspiring Rd properties yesterday.

Initially, the smoke blew away from Wanaka, but by mid-afternoon yesterday much of the sky around the town was screened by smoke.

Wanaka resident Jo Gumpatzes described it as appalling. “Can you imagine being a tourist coming to town today to look at the mountains, to look at the view, and you can’t even see them. It doesn’t do anything for Wanaka as a brand, it doesn’t do anything for New Zealand … it’s just appalling.”

Lake Wanaka Tourism (LWT) general manager James Helmore said he understood farmers needed to burn off and he was aware they were trying to move away from the practice.

However, it was “disappointing” to see such a widespread burn-off.

Mr Hypocrite isn’t popular with his townfolk, that’s for sure   Read more »

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Corporate bludgers costing Kiwi households up to $800 per annum

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Bludging is rampant in NZ society.

But it is corporate bludging that is most outrageous.

And it is costing us a pretty penny. The Taxpayers’ Union has released a new report into corporate welfare and bludging.

The Taxpayers’ Union has launched new a report, Monopoly Money, which examines the cost and case for New Zealand’s extensive corporate welfare programmes. The report follows recent comments by TradeMe founder Sam Morgan, who questioned the Government’s corporate welfare programme, despite having been involved in companies that have received grants in the past.

The report, which examines the cost of corporate welfare examines government spending since the 2007/2008 budget, shows:

  • Since National took office, corporate welfare has cost taxpayers $1-1.4 billion ($600 – $800 per household) per year
  • If corporate welfare was abolished, enough money would be saved to reduce the corporate tax rate from 28% to 22.5%
  • If applied to personal income tax rates, the saving would allow the 30% and 33% income tax rates to be lowered to 29%
  • Alternatively, the 10.5% rate (applicable to the first $14,000 of income) could be reduced to 7%.    Read more »

For once I agree with Sam Morgan, but he’s a bludging hypocrite himself

Sam Morgan has taken a swipe at the Government’s ongoing corporate welfare via the Callaghan Fund and sparked a stoush with Steven Joyce the minister responsible for handing out the welfare.

TradeMe founder Sam Morgan has called the Government’s research and development policy a “subsidy for private investors” during a cut-and-thrust social media exchange with Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce.

The Government yesterday announced its Callaghan Innovation had awarded a further $32 million over three years to 22 high tech companies under the Research and Development Growth Grants scheme.

The latest companies come from a wide range of industries from aviation to horticulture and include two companies that floated in the past year – online travel software company Serko and software company GeoOp.

News of the grants prompted Morgan, an entrepreneur who has been involved with a number of grant recipients in the past, to take to social networking site Twitter and say taxpayers were “giving free money to publicly listed tech companies to benefit wealthy tech investors”.

“Serko. Good company. Just raised lots of money on NZX. No constraint on raising more capital. Successful grant recipient. Unnecessary,” Morgan said.    Read more »

Sledge of the day

What is it with wealthy people who are also socialists and their propensity to act like sanctimonious, all knowing oracles, and worse their propensity to tell us they know better than the rest of us.

Once such person is Gareth Morgan, but his son isn’t far off.

Read more »

The Most Boring Millionaire in New Zealand

Surely this is now a tie between Sam and Gareth Morgan.

Rod Drury has made more money for Sam Morgan than Sam made for himself.  We know because Sam told us so.

Sam, who still drives a Volkswagen Golf, has about 20 projects on the go in the developing world, mostly focused on alleviating poverty.

His father shares his taste for simple cars, driving a Toyota Yaris.

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…….

If you are going to be rich and drive a boring car then really the money is wasted on you. I view fast expensive cars as a positive externality and it is every stinking rich person’s duty to own and drive around as many as possible so we can see them on the streets.

“Most of life I think doesn’t really change, but anything to do with money . . . you sort of need to recognise that you don’t have the same level of problems as ordinary people do with mortgages and affording a holiday once a year or whatever, those become non-problems.

“But everything else is pretty much the same, you know. The dishwasher still doesn’t empty itself.”          Read more »

Trotter on the left’s problems

Chris Trotter is a thinker, he is a great sounding board for what is happening on the left.

His post on The Daily Blog is a must read, but to save you the hassle of going to that site here are the best parts.

Labour will take comfort from the fact that its vote has remained steady at 34 percent. It shouldn’t. Unless 100,000 Green voters have undergone a Road to Damascus conversion to John Key’s easy-going conservatism and are now declaring themselves National Party supporters, the poll result is simply reflecting the extreme volatility on the left of New Zealand politics.

The most likely sources of National’s 6 percentage point surge to 51 percent are Labour and (to a lesser extent) NZ First. Buoyed by optimistic economic forecasts and dismayed by the Opposition’s presentational gaffes, the voters who had drifted back to Labour over the past few months now appear to be rushing back to National.

Labour are putting about that the One News poll was a rogue because voters moved from Green to National. Only the most stupid of commentators would buy that spin and Trotter certainly doesn’t.

Most political analysts are attributing the sharp decline in Green Party support (from 13 percent to 8 percent) to Russel Norman’s secret meetings with Kim Dotcom. Norman’s purpose in approaching the German IT entrepreneur was to dissuade him from setting up a political party whose demographic appeal is certain to overlap that of the Greens. As if this wasn’t bad enough, Norman then managed to convey the impression that the quid pro quo for Dotcom’s standing-down the Internet Party would be a Green Party promise to prevent his extradition to the United States.

If the pundits are correct, then the Greens’ relationship with Dotcom has undone years of careful branding on the part of the Green Party leadership.

A critical factor in the Greens appeal – especially to left-of-centre voters – is the impression, conveyed by successive Green leaders, that their party is “above” or “in front” of politics-as-usual. The Greens’ proud claim has always been that they want no part of the backstairs, you-scratch-my-back- and-I’ll-scratch-yours transactional politics so characteristic of the National and Labour parties.   Read more »

Why corporate welfare must end

Corporate welfare is as evil as normal wlefare…it creates bludgers who get use to taking but it is worse for corporate welfare, because those bludging ratbags then inevitably sell the company offshore and the corporate welfare is all gone into the bulging pockets of the former owners.

Chris Keall explains about another corporate bludger who has sold out.

For staff of companies like Navman and The Hyperfactory it’s a familiar story. A hot NZ technology company is sold to offshore buyers, with its founder pledging jobs will stay in New Zealand – only for that promise to melt away as the new owners take control.

The latest casualty is NextWindow, a company whose revenue hit $60 million+ as it supplied touchscreen technology to PC makers like HP, Asus and Lenovo.

The recipient of a $6 million, no-strings government grant is gutting its local office, a source close to the situation tells NBR ONLINE.

Layoffs will see 11 staff left in NextWindow’s Auckland office, which at the time of its 2010 takeover by Canadian company Smart Technologies housed around seven times that number.

Powerbyproxi leases space in the same building. CEO Greg Cross tells NBR his company has already taken over space vacated by NextWindow.  Read more »

Sam Morgan continues piss take on his Dad

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Gareth Morgan never had this in mind

Mad Gareth Morgan wouldn’t have thought this might be a consequence of his cat killing ways:

Details of how a man killed a kitten then placed its remains on his former girlfriend’s bed caused an audible gasp in the Nelson District Court.

Abraham Zacharia McIvor’s angry rampage on the night of January 10 ended with him stomping on the head of the seven-week old kitten, beside which he placed a note warning his former girlfriend she was next, the court heard.

McIvor, a 25 year-old labourer, admitted yesterday wilfully ill-treating a kitten causing it to die, intimidating and assaulting his former partner and a charge of wilful damage. He was remanded in custody for sentencing on March 4.

Meeanwhile his son at least has a sense of humour:  Read more »

Trade Me sale reported

Fairfax must really be in the crapper if they have sold their cash cow.

Fairfax Media is reportedly selling its remaining stake in Trade Me for about A$650 million (NZ$810m).

If the sale were to proceed, it would considerably pay down the company’s debts.

The stake is reportedly being sold to a range of New Zealand and Australian institutions in a placement through UBS, according to market sources.

The quoted sale figure would exceed what Fairfax paid for Trade Me in its initial investment five years ago.

Fairfax bought the online auction company from founder Sam Morgan and his fellow private investors for NZ$700m in 2006 and previously recouped NZ$364m by selling a 34 per cent stake through Trade Me’s initial public offering in December 2011.

It may pay down their debt but it also removes a money spinner…leaving them with assets that are failing in any case…perhaps this is a death spiral.