The interview is here. Some extracts:
GUYON Thank you Phil for joining us this morning, we really appreciate your time. Thursday’s Budget we’re almost certain to see a rise in GST to 15%. Now I know you’re looking possibly at some exemptions to GST, but can you say that Labour would restore the general level of GST back to 12ý%, should you be elected in 2011?
PHIL GOFF - Opposition Leader
No I can’t make that promise because I don’t know whether it’ll be financially viable, or whether the situation can be reversed in that way.
Yet that didn’t stop Phil doing a taxpayer funded nationwide bus tour called “Axe the tax”. He doesn’t even believe in his own slogan.
GUYON The Sunday Star Times this morning, asks 50 prominent New Zealanders to ask questions of John Key. One of them’s from Colin Meads, and he asks whether the government is doing too much for the Maori people. Can I ask his question to you? Is the government doing too much for Maori people?
PHIL I think it’s doing the wrong thing, it’s entirely about symbolism, you know a flag over the Harbour Bridge – what we should be looking at is the 37% of Maori boys aged 15 to 19 who are currently not in work, not in education and not in training. Are we doing too much there? No, we’re not doing enough, and that spells out economic and social disaster for this country if we tolerate that situation.
Again, part of the problem here is Labour abolishing the lower minimum wage rate for teenagers. An unskilled 16 year old seeking their first job is simply often not going to get hired at $12.75 an hour. Labour have priced young workers off the market.
If a 17 year old can get a part-time job at say $10/hr, then in a couple of years they will have the skills and experience to get a higher paid paid.Tags: Phil Goff, Q&A