Comment of the Day

Mikev wrote

So Ardern claims Neoliberalism has failed & Interventionist governments have served NZ well. This is a timely reminder how “green” & lacking in worldly experience she is. She was 4 years old when arguably NZ’s most interventionist Government was kicked out of office.

Under Muldoon, telephones took 6 months to connect in some areas of Auckland. TVs were disassembled before being shipped to NZ so workers could reassemble them here, thousands of people worked for NZ rail which hardly anyone used, a trip to Australia was a shopping trip and as long as you could get your purchases past customs you saved at least the price of your airfare on your buys. Muldoon introduced car-less days, a wage & price freeze & if he thought he could get away with it he would have legislated to stop the tide coming in. Margarine was only available on prescription and imported goods were strictly controlled by an import licence system which guaranteed huge profits for the licence holder and huge retail prices for the consumer.

Ardern needs to get real & pay attention to history. Neo liberalism has not failed it has brought a measure of fairness to our tax system through GST & flattening of the tax rates. Jim Bolger stating that it has failed is a condemnation of his own term in office where many reforms were deferred for political expediency. Ardern would do well to read Richard Prebble’s book describing the increased tax take the government received after scrapping marginal tax rates at 66c in the $. Hardly anyone paid it, tax accountants made a fortune & the economy stagnated under that interventionist government.

What has failed in relation to Labour’s 1984 – 1987 reforms is the lack of political guts to continue the reforms that Roger Douglas started. Luckily, judging by the latest polls the electorate are seeing past the personable image and finding sensible policies lacking. Taxing ourselves rich is like standing in a bucket while trying to lift it by the handles.


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