Bulletins and Reports

Bulletin 23/8/2017

Summary:

National keeps spreading misconceptions about taxes – by the Minister of Revenue, no less.  Labour keeps pushing on housing.  Few new policies as the candidates are busy campaigning.

 

Echo Chamber National:

(!) The definition of “capital gains” is specifically wealth that you didn’t work for.  If you own a house and the government creates a housing bubble so the value of your house doubles without you doing anything, that is, by definition, money you didn’t earn.  The correct question is “why bother working and saving if you can sit on your house and gain money without doing anything to earn it”:

 

Acting the socialist for the votes:

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

On education:

 

On housing:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

On trains:

 

Debating:

 

On housing:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

Governments shouldn’t invest in trains (but billions on roads is good):

 

Boo taxes, and nevermind what ACT said previously about paying down the debt:

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

Nothing significant.

 

Bulletin 22/8/2017

Summary:

Peter Dunne will not be contesting this election – the responses from the other parties are mostly gracious.  National’s big announcement for the day is an ambitious push for more free trade deals – it sounds good enough, but the TPP shows us that those deals don’t always go according to plan.  Labour has some responses for National’s record on trade, and they also release a campaign ad.  The Greens promise a capital gains tax to rein in house prices.

 

Echo Chamber National:

On Peter Dunne:

 

(!) Misleading use of quote marks.  The “quote” is not of the journalist, but of himself being quoted by the journalist.  The only person to use the words “false promise” is Bennett himself:

 

On free trade negotiations.  Note that all this hinges on the whims of foreign governments:

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

On Peter Dunne:

 

On health funding:

 

Propaganda:

 

On National’s trade deals:

 

On transport:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

On Peter Dunne:

 

On trains and highways:

 

On infrastructure:

 

On a capital gains tax:

 

On trade:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

Attacking National:

 

On immigration:

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

On Peter Dunne:

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

On Peter Dunne:

Bulletin 21/8/2017

Summary:

Labour continues to get a lot of media attention after yesterday’s big campaign launch, announcing plans for more trains and more education funding.  National feels compelled to respond, scaremongering on a capital gains tax, and announcing a bit more money for education and healthcare.  The Greens announce policy for free public transport for young people.  Peter Dunne has announced that he won’t be seeking re-election, but they haven’t said it on Twitter yet.

 

Echo Chamber National:

Quotes Grant Robertson saying they’ve been talking about taxing housing speculators since 2015, but that’s National’s definition of “starting to appear”:

 

(!) A capital gains tax on investment properties is not a tax on small business in general, only property speculators.  It suppresses only the housing bubble.  It encourages job creation because it shifts investment dollars out of houses and into businesses.  It doesn’t affect incomes except for property speculators.  Hudson literally listed all the wrong things, and left out the one thing that’s correct – correcting the house price bubble may potentially push recent mortgagees into foreclosure because it wouldn’t make sense to finance a mortgage that costs twice the value of the house before even factoring in the interest:

 

“$2 million to help 200 teachers move from overseas”, that’s $10,000 each, which is less than half a year of rent:

 

On healthcare costs:

 

(!) Or you can lay another track to increase capacity:

 

But we do like trains:

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

On National’s highways:

 

More trains:

 

On the teacher shortage:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

On fossil fuels:

 

On political donations:

 

On National’s highways:

 

On Labour:

 

On public transport:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

On education:

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

Nothing significant.

 

Bulletin 20/8/2017

Summary:

National is lying again, cherry-picking statistics to suit their agenda – the insulting part is that the very data they link to disproves their conclusions, and they’re so arrogant that they think you’re too stupid to notice.  National also announces more highways.  Labour’s campaign launch draws a big crowd – Ardern’s speech focuses on poverty, education, housing, mental health, climate change, water quality.

 

Echo Chamber National:

Campaigning:

 

(!) This is a building boom relative to the aftermath of the Great Recession of 2008.  If we look at longer-term trends, current consent numbers are comparable to 1950 – 1980 averages.  We should also note that the current uptick in housing construction follows a larger surge in population growth, thus this boom is merely struggling to keep pace with demand (http://m.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/population/estimates_and_projections/dwellings-household-trends-1991-2015.aspx ):

 

(!) This graph is deliberately truncated to mislead (see full data set at https://data.oecd.org/lprdty/gdp-per-hour-worked.htm ).  The start date of 2005 is below long-term trends for New Zealand.  If 2004 or 2007 were picked as starting dates, then New Zealand would be shown to be below OECD average.  Limiting the data set to the selected countries also misrepresent the data.  Comparing with all OECD countries, New Zealand is in the bottom half in percentages terms, and significantly below OECD average in real dollar values.

 

(!) A “NZ tax resident” is very different from a “NZ resident”.  Actual NZ citizens and legal residents are only 40% of the market.  57% of the market are people who pay New Zealand taxes, but are neither NZ citizens nor residents.  You qualify to be a tax resident merely by owning a house in New Zealand, which is tautological when we’re talking about property investors.  From the IRD website on tax residency, “Even if you maintain ties (or even a physical home) in other countries you can still be a New Zealand tax resident. As long as you have a permanent place of abode in New Zealand you’ll always be a [tax] resident”:

 

More money for roads:

 

That’s because family farms are sometimes sold to property developers, Steven:

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

Campaigning:

 

On housing:

 

On a hospital for Dunedin:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

Campaigning:

 

On migrant worker conditions:

 

On National’s new highways:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

On National’s Dunedin hospital announcement:

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

Campaigning:

 

ACT likes big government spending on highways:

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

Nothing significant.

 

Bulletin 19/8/2017

Summary:

New Zealand First announces policy to raise the minimum wage, cut GST on essentials, and tighten tax laws for multinationals.  ACT says raising the minimum wage raise unemployment.  National promises a new hospital for Dunedin, though opponents say it’s been promised for a long time now and National never delivered.  National continue to tell half-truths about Labour’s proposed capital gains tax and water royalties.

 

Echo Chamber National:

New hospital for Dunedin:

 

(!) House prices in Auckland has approximately doubled in the past 5 years.  Halving current prices only means correcting the price bubble:

 

WooOOooo paying for the upkeep of our country is scary:

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

On Dunedin hospital promises:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

On water extraction:

 

On cannabis law reform:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

On the minimum wage:

 

On GST:

 

On multinational tax avoidance:

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

On the minimum wage:

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

Nothing significant.

 

Bulletin 18/8/2017

Summary:

Parliament is adjourned until after the election.  The parties talk about their respective issues, but no significant new developments.  The latest poll looks good for Labour, bad for the Greens.

 

Echo Chamber National:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

On water pricing:

 

On housing:

 

On multinational tax avoidance:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

On the Trans-Pacific Partnership:

 

On water quality:

 

On polls:

 

On climate change:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

On the Trans-Pacific Partnership:

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

On housing:

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

Nothing significant.

 

Bulletin 17/8/2017

Summary:

After years of ignoring housing, National realises housing is a huge election issue, and is now talking about how much they’re doing about housing, without any hint of irony.  Labour has plenty to say about National’s failure on housing, and the Greens and the Maori Party also talk about housing.  Most people seem to have stopped talking about welfare and WINZ since Metiria Turei stepped down, but that conversation continues in the Greens echo chamber – the mainstream may not be paying attention, but the Greens look like they’re the only ones who care about the poor right now.

 

Echo Chamber National:

National finally notices the housing disaster.  I feel obligated to point out that those numbers are not sufficient to end the housing shortage:

 

The maximum HomeStart grant is $20,000 per house:

 

On free trade:

 

Echo Chamber Labour:

On housing:

 

On water pricing:

 

Echo Chamber Green:

On housing:

 

More trains:

 

On welfare:

 

Echo Chamber New Zealand First:

Blame the immigrants:

 

On the economy:

 

Echo Chamber Maori Party:

On Treaty claims:

 

On housing:

 

Echo Chamber ACT:

Nothing significant.

 

Echo Chamber United Future:

Nothing significant.