After slamming the government Robbo, with his next breath, says Labour will increase taxes

As I said previously Grant Robertson knows as much about finance as Jacinda Ardern does about child rearing.

After slamming the government over tax cuts in his next breath he announces Labour will fight the election proposing tax increases.

Labour is planning to announce tax increases before the next election to help fund its spending plans but will leave the detailed work until it is in government.

Their spending promises are shaping up to be massive. Billions upon billions, and the only way they can fund that is by stiffing us with tax increases.

In a pre-Budget speech to a business breakfast on Monday, Labour finance spokesman Grant Robertson said a Tax Working Group would be set up after the election to develop ways to correct the imbalances between the productive and speculative parts of the economy.

“While we want a comprehensive review there will be some interim steps that we will announce before the election … to ensure that we have the revenue to address pressing issues, particularly in health, education and housing,” he said.

“I think it’s only fair to New Zealand we go to the next election with some sense of the direction of our tax policy. We want the Tax Working Group to do the detailed work but I think it’s only fair for New Zealanders that they see the path we are on.

Typical Labour, they want other people to do their thinking for them. Phil Goff promises a tax expert panel, so did David Shearer and so did David Cunliffe. They are going to fight an election on a promise of tax increases but not tell us how, where, who and how much. Why don’t we just elect the expert panel instead of the Muppet Show.

“So we will have some specific things to say about the tax system before the election.”

Robertson would not say what those changes might be, but it is understood extra taxes on property speculation could be part of the mix.

And probably a rich prick tax, like Helen Clark put in place.

The working group would look again at a capital gains tax (CGT), dropped from Labour’s platform when Andrew Little took over as leader in late 2014, and a land tax.

A capital gains tax would not be part of the party’s platform in 2017, but it was not off the table for the working group.

“Very little will be out of scope for the working group. We want that to take a broad approach.”

“We do need to look at the range of options. There are issues with the CGT, as we brought it forward, that we need to explore but clearly that has to be one of the options a tax working group would look at.”

Its mandate was to “rebalance” the tax system.

Do you really believe that Labour won’t implement a capital gains tax after winning an election? If you do I know where you can buy a bridge at a real bargain.

Labour can’t be trusted. But hey, if they want to fight an election promising tax increases then go right ahead.


– Fairfax


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  • metalnwood

    How many years of not having the responsibility of running a government do they need to come up with this stuff?

    What do they do for eight hours a day? Fleshing out ideas is what they should be doing, if years at eight hours a day only gives them ideas with no substance then they are not good enough.

    Heck, even Len Brown was able to lie to us and say rates increases but only small ones. Can’t you at least so that Labour. They have no idea.

  • Dan

    Once again Labour have pointed the knarled finger of doom at “The Rich” (who dont vote for them as a rough rule) and punched middle NZ hard in the chops.

    Then they head into an election with a tax policy that revolves around creating a working group to make a tax policy.

    This is great news for another 4 years in opposition.

  • oldmanNZ

    a tax working group, a group who will justify their existence by putting out new tax constantly on the hard working to pay for non working .

    this working group is likely to look at other tax as well as the CGT and land Tax,
    sugar tax
    salt tax
    fat tax
    carbon tax (they need the greens)
    rental tax
    car tax (to pay for rail)
    inch tax (the bigger one you get the more tax you pay, like for a TV)

    • Miguel

      There won’t be a fat tax. Too much impact on the Labour-loyal PI community, and it gets suspiciously close to being a prod to personal responsibility….

      • contractor

        Perhaps resurrect Clark et al’s “fart tax” on those nasty farmers which the Greens would love.

  • sheppy

    “Very little will be out of scope for the working group. We want that to take a broad approach.”
    or to put it another way, we will tax anyone in anyway possible to find as much money as possible to waste on our pet causes. We will stop at nothing in our quest to tax “rich pricks” no matter how low in terms of income a “rich prick” actually is.
    We will announce tax increases before the election to fund popular bumper sticker slogans, and then when we are in power we will really ramp it up to stuff anyone earning a living, especially those who don’t agree with our ethos.
    Once we have done that we will set up state funding for ourselves and reluctantly other political parties to ensure that we can keep ourselves in power and forcibly removing money from your bank accounts for the foreseeable future.
    Further more, in association with our Green colleagues we will abolish living in cars by ensuring that no-one can afford a car.

    There you go Robbo, I released the bits you didn’t….

  • Keeping Stock

    I guess this billboard can be dragged out again, albeit with different faces…

    • Miguel

      That was a brilliant campaign. Were it not for the student loan bribe, I think National might have pipped it.

  • Ross15

    If they replace Little with Robertson I think Labour will be worse off.

  • JC

    To fight and win the next election Robbo needs money that can only be supplied by big business and crony capitalists, so the real question is what is he promising those guys to get them onside?


  • BigDogTalking

    National just need to remind the electorate what Labors definition of rich is.
    When last in power they introduced a new tax tier for personal income which was set at $60k if memory serves (now 70k) so with the full time median income now being $51k better watch out, there may be a lot more “rich pricks” under Labors definition out there than people imagine.

  • Tom

    As the next election is probably a done deal will they still go ahead with their tax review so voters know how much it will cost them to have a labour government before the 2020 election. Want to bet they dont?

  • STAG

    I already support two dole bludgers! is this no enough for you Robo? Should it be 3 or 4, why not 5?!?! How much is enough of my money Robo?

    I’ll soon need it myself at his rate, but hey at least we’ll all be equally poor.

  • axeman

    So a CGT only works and is paid when you sell the property so all that will do is create even more shortages and speculators will hold off till the next Govt gets elected and abolishes it. The problem is not the tax take its the tax spend. Until the Govt starts spending the the current tax take wisely why would I want to contribute more.
    How can we have poverty with the number of obese young and old people from low socioeconomic areas all of which have sky dishes.
    I took our family of four to McDonalds a while back and it was just over $40.00. I pointed out to my wife that we could have had steak potatoes and Leaks for that at home for less, or a Roast Beef or Chicken meal. Yet these fast food restaurants are packed.
    I know I’m generalising which is dangerous but I’m sure I’m not the only that observes this. How about giving me a tax break for me taking responsibility for my own health, making sure I keep the weight off by swimming twice a week and circuits alternate days as well as paying for health insurance. At least that way when I need some surgery I’m not a burden on the health system and I can get in and get the job done.

    • STAG

      I have a feeling we’re about to see this sort of clear policy comprehension from another Labour “Leader”.

    • localnews

      Great point about health insurance, you are paying twice. If it was tax deductible the burden from the public health system would disappear overnight. Same with education

      • Michelle

        And we still have to pay ACC even though they tell me my injury is age or degeneration.
        We have health insurance so would be happy to not have to pay ACC for other injuries and get more private insurance cover
        Every year you pay up then at the end of the year ACC wants another top up all for nothing

  • Keyser Soze

    Australia has CGT, stamp duty and restricts foreign buyers to new homes and they too have a housing ‘crisis’ for the same reasons we do – inept councils. Rather than allowing ACC to spend $4b on a train tunnel to nowhere JK should have installed a governor to spend up large on infrastructure to green fields housing developments.

  • Catriona

    Well, according to Little I’m a ‘Parasite’ as I am an Employer. I fear they’ll bang the minimum wage up to $19+ and, therefore, put a lot of people out of work. Then what, Robbo? Would the Labour Govt pay benes rage equivalent of the minimum wage or are they doing that already?

  • Keyser Soze

    Bye bye Labour, as if simply being inept wasn’t enough of a handicap now you want voters to choose between tax hikes or tax cuts! Turn the lights off in your parliamentary offices on the way out.

  • Trev_A

    CGT is a tax on inflation, great for Labour. What happens if things go backwards (Housing bubble burst) do the landlords get refunds when they bail.
    CGT also slows things down for people wanting to get ahead. Not good for the economy.
    Many people I know start or buy a business by selling their second property with very tight budgets, with a CGT hitting them on the sale and on the purchase price of the business I guess you have to wait a few more years to act. With the exemption of no CGT on business sold to retire the old owner may stay on for a few years.
    Many New Zealanders living off shore have money and assets in trust here because there is no CGT, unlike their new country, I can imagine the exodus of capital should Labour correct the sin of having no CGT to prop up their spending.

    • Zanyzane

      The CGT that Labour and Greens want is not isolated to property. It is a wide ranging tax and includes a 15% tax on the sale of holiday homes, inheritance, sale of businesses, share portfolios, bonds etc.

      • Trev_A

        CGT would put the breaks on enterprise and is pulling up the ladder for those who want to get on with things. They say they need it to sort out house prices in Auckland but know it wouldn’t work. They just want the tax to spend and want to get it from people that wont vote for them.

    • Zanyzane

      Listening to Russell Norman on Q&A when the tax on property discussion came up, he actually stayed clear of that silly discussion. He was focused on 2 things. Climate Change and Nuclear War. The only tax he advocated was a carbon tax.

  • rua kenana

    A property speculation tax was been tried before, by the Kirk-Rowling Labour govt in 1973-4, in a typical feeble Labour attempt to “do something” about the then massive house price rises caused by the then massively excess immigration numbers.
    That Labour attempt was utterly useless. Owners hung on to their houses rather than selling them so house availability to new buyers went down rather than up. The tax raised almost no revenue and it’s only useful result was to help Labour get massacred in the 1975 election.
    Political parties just don’t get elected by saying they’ll raise taxes. Among other things this indicates they’ve little idea how to use the existing tax revenues effectively. Key understands this. Labour, perhaps fortunately for us all, doesn’t.

  • Zanyzane

    The Tax working Group have already met and have already discussed over 12 months paid for by the NZ taxpayer some years ago. What a complete waste of time, effort and tax dollars

    1. Tax on invested equity for all property owners including old folks and retirees and force them out of their houses. This is the most favoured option by the Tax Working Group.
    2. Land tax on all property owners including old folks and retirees and force them out of their homes.
    3. Reduce personal tax rate and increase GST to 15% which the government adopted. Guess what? This increase has boosted the internet retail business to now $1 billion plus which no GST is paid for overseas purchases. Since then we have seen the many retail businesses in NZ shutting shop or sold to overseas interest.

    Grant Robertson is an idiot. Why waste Taxpayers money? Just go read up on what the Tax Working Group has done before and decide how far you want to take option 1 and option 2.

  • Keanne Lawrence

    It is sheer lala-land thinking from Labour but nothing new there. They are begging for votes based on a water colour picture which will soon wash off with the first shower to reveal their true intended direction.
    It seems that every sensitive or important issue will be dealt with by another Expert Panel after they are elected. No doubt made up of hand picked lackeys who will find their final recommendations included in their briefing package. Just after the remuneration details for their selection. Called “expert” but read as scapegoat.

  • Big fella

    Here’s the analogy. National, vote for us and we will give you a cuddle every day. Labour, vote for us and we will give you a clip around the ears, every day. Hmmm one is comfortable and one is not. Doesn’t take too long to work out what might be best for me going forward. Muppets.

  • Miss Phit

    When will labour learn. If they keep their mouths shut people will vote for them, but if they open their mouths they drive people away.

    Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than open your mouth and remove any doubt.

  • PhantomsDoc

    “Grant Robertson said a Tax Working Group would be set up after the
    election to develop ways to correct the imbalances between the
    productive and speculative parts of the economy.”

    Never hearing this term before, I take it that the “productive” part of the economy is made up of those that work and generate income and revenue while the “speculative” part is that where the people speculate that they may get a job and become “productive”???

    If so, I’m all for correcting the balance of the economy back to the productive.

  • Bryan

    oh dear I had heard they were thinking about doing a retake of DUMB and DUMBER
    I think we have found the two lead actors Rob a Little