Sunday, May 19, 2013

An Alternative Budget.


An alternative Budget, From Matt McCarten.
  Matt has posed this as a "left wing" budget.

However many of the ideas would have been considered centrist economic thinking not long ago.
Just shows how much right wing extremists have dominated economic thinking.

"1. Abolish 15 per cent GST. Replace with 1 per cent financial transaction tax as recommended by the New Zealand Bankers Association. Same money."
An idea which is being looked at seriously all around the world. It does need adoption by many countries at once to prevent banks dodging it.
"2. Abolish PAYE on wages and salaries. Replace it with a wealth tax and a capital gains tax when shares, businesses, land and property are sold. People are taxed when they're cashing up, not when they are making it."
Actually an idea of that noted arch socialist, economic thinker, Adam Smith. "Tax the owners of capital and land, not labour and entrepreneurs, because they produce the wealth".
"3. 90 per cent Death Tax. You can't take it with you. Grown-up kids should earn their own money anyway."
True, but I think their should be a threshold, say, a million dollars. No reason why one family should be allowed to accumulate ever increasing wealth over generations., and many sound economic and social justice reasons why they shouldn't. However parents should be able to pass on some to their kids.
"4. Rent-to-buy homes underwritten by the state. Limiting homes to two a family and having a capital gains tax will keep prices affordable."
Exemptions for family homes or restrictions on the number of homes a family has may not work. How do you define family?  Better to again have a threshold. Maybe set at the current median price.
"5. State-created work schemes for all long-term jobless."
Not bad, but I think a Guaranteed income is better, bearing in mind that in a steady state sustainable economy we do not need all those working hours.
"6. A living wage set at $20 an hour minimum. It would be a stimulus package."
Contrary to often expressed opinions from the rabid right, minimum wages increase demand and increase jobs and business profits. A better form of stimulus than gifting money to the banks, who lost it in the first place.
"7. No tax on profits kept in a business."
An incentive to invest in business growth, entrepreneurship and employment, not speculation.
"8. Free public transport in major cities. That would get people out of their cars."
Likely to save on roading, energy, and other costs long term.
"9. Victims get 100 per cent state compensation for loss or injury. Offenders work it off if necessary.
I hope that is extended to those who knowingly sell harmful products and politicians who work against their constituents best interests.
"10. Make KiwiSaver a state-owned fund and buy all the Government's non-core commercial assets."
Still doesn't give the investment in sustainable productivity we need for the future, but better than putting it in the financial lottery that is overseas financial markets. The same ones that lost all the US pension funds.

All in all a much more progressive and sound budget than National's recent mean spirited and dysfunctional, joke. 

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