Vote Labour and we’ll give you $10,000 a year

October 10th, 2013 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Michael Fox at Stuff reports:

The Government’s lowest-paid workers are being promised a $10,000-a-year pay rise under a Labour government.

Why stop at $10,000? Why not $15,000?

However, the expected cost to the taxpayer of its proposed remains unclear, with Labour claiming extending it to the core public service would cost $30 million a year and National putting it at $68m.

Labour have not made clear if their policy will apply to contractors such as cleaners? They constantly highlight how the cleaners at Parliament should get the living wage. But the cleaners are not employed by Parliament, plys Parliamentary Service is not core public service. So will Labour’s policy mean a “living wage” for Parliament’s cleaners? If not, then how cynical to use them as the poster childs for your campaign – and not deliver a policy that applies to them.

Based on a 40-hour working week on the living wage, an employee would earn $38,272 before tax, compared with $28,600 on the current minimum wage.

Insane. No 16 year old in the public sector on less than $38,000 a year full-time.

 

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172 Responses to “Vote Labour and we’ll give you $10,000 a year”

  1. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    Another reason to never vote for the socialist Labour Party!

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  2. smttc (711 comments) says:

    So, scrapping the youth wage, hiking the minimum wage to $15.00 and introducing a living wage of $18.40 isn’t an attack on vulnerable workers?

    Oh the irony.

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  3. thePeoplesFlag (222 comments) says:

    Labour has already said it will apply a living wage initially to those directly employed by the government, then slowly extend it to all those organisations that contract to the government. It isn’t a matter of “if” this policy will apply to contractors such as cleaners, it is a matter of when.

    It is about time the rising tide lifted more than just super yachts.

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  4. WineOh (608 comments) says:

    … except Government departments will still have the same budgets to work within, so perversely it encourages them to outsource more of those basic functions to avoid paying the higher rates.

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  5. smttc (711 comments) says:

    “Vote Labour and we’ll give you $10,000 a year at the same time as we pull the WFF carpet from underneath your feet.” If you have children mind. If not then it’s all good.

    What a capricious policy.

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  6. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    The comrade thePeoplesFlag immediately jumped to the defense of his political masters.
    Reds of the world, unite!

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  7. eszett (2,374 comments) says:

    No 16 year old in the public sector on less than $38,000 a year full-time.

    Since this seems to be your favourite example, I’d be curious to know.
    How many 16 year-old full time employees are in the public sector?

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  8. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Oh well, that’s the Labour Party for you with Cunliffe at the helm and Robertson in a senior position: reckless and feckless

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  9. alloytoo (468 comments) says:

    Well that’s a bit better than their electricity bribe of $300 a year……

    Does no one understand basic economics anymore?

    Implement something stupid like this and it leads to inflation as the market adjusts upwards for all the factors that currently dictate pricing.

    Then of course the reserve bank will raise interest rates (it won’t care that it’s wage push inflation) and after a whole lot of run around no one will be better off.

    Then some idiot will announce an adjust to living wage to compensate for inflation…….and off we go again.

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  10. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    How many 16 year olds are there in the public service ? This sounds like a storm in a teacup. Compared to other Labour policies this one is one of the more workable.

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  11. SW (235 comments) says:

    Does anyone have data on how many 16 year olds work in the public sector?

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  12. tvb (4,255 comments) says:

    And the people who miss out. What about them. And what about relativities they will want an increase to maintain their relative position. It will go on and on. Just when the economy is starting to heal from the last labour binge they come forward with more extravagance.

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  13. Prince (92 comments) says:

    Even more insane, the only recipients of the increase will be those without families or dependants. Those who need it most will find it stripped away through WFF and supplement cuts as their wages increase. Such analysis would be too complex for our advocate-journalists.

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  14. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    waaahh wah wah wah, bleat bleat bleat ….

    pathetic. What a cretin, resisting with everything you’ve got (which is fuck all) every attempt to do more for the slave workers.

    $30million for foreign owned tiwai point, no problem. $30million for kiwi workers, much problem. Says it all.

    Horrible. horrible horrible horrible scheming snaking suppressing self-serving stinking

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  15. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    vto +1

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  16. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    We do not have a problem in this country with people being paid a wage they can live on, for a decent days work. We have a problem with people being paid for not working and for having babies.

    If we are not going to pay people enough to live on [for working] then they are going to take the other options. Many young women can not see the returns on working their arses off and simply pump out babies.

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  17. mikemikemikemike (320 comments) says:

    What do you have against a 16yr old earning $38,000 a year DPF? – it almost sounds like you are advocating a salary based on age rather than skill. If the job is worth that much a year, then it shouldn’t matter one spot how old or young the person is that is doing it.

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  18. labrator (1,849 comments) says:

    What changes will be made to social welfare rates as a result of these promises Cunliffe is making?

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  19. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Compared to other Labour policies this one is one of the more workable.

    The impact to youth employment is only one of the issues with implementing the ‘living wage.’ What do you think employees who have more experience in the same roles, or who consider their roles to require more skills and have greater value, are going to do if those less experienced or skilled suddenly get pay increases that reduce the gaps between their earnings?

    Why they will demand more, of course. To retain the income premium for their skills, experience and value of roles.

    The flow on effects of the ‘living wage’ will be far greater than advocates try to make out.

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  20. labrator (1,849 comments) says:

    $30million for kiwi workers, much problem. Says it all.

    Please show us your maths for this. The law of unintended consequences says you’ve likely got it all wrong. All the councils that said they’d support it have so far backed out of it and now Labour is ignoring the lessons they’ve learnt.

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  21. Reid (16,111 comments) says:

    What a cretin, resisting with everything you’ve got (which is fuck all) every attempt to do more for the slave workers.

    So why not make it $50 p.h. if legislating people out of poverty is your answer? What a mean bastard you are, only $18.95 – what’s wrong with you Liarbore people, hearts of flint, you have. What would Lenin say?

    $30million for kiwi workers, much problem.

    It’s not $30m der, it’s $300m once the people who are currently on $18.95 turn around and say: hey, I’ve got heaps more experience than they have, I require more, and so on and so forth. Of course Cunliffe already knows this, the fact he doesn’t mention it shows you what sort of person he is, doesn’t it.

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  22. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    Greens have already pointed out that they want the same for all workers, not just public servants. And it won’t be long before they remind us they want it for all people (as per them wanting ‘Working For Families’ for all families), regardless of whether they are employed or not.

    And then the cost will be what? I hope they’ve been planting plenty of money trees, we might be needing them soon.

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  23. SW (235 comments) says:

    Is it accurate to describe a pay increase for people working 40 hours a week to be labelled giving money away?

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  24. Judith (8,460 comments) says:

    That sounds like a great idea. I was thinking of getting a new car, that would pay for the leather upholstery I want.

    Where do I sign up?

    (quite frankly there is currently no political party in NZ that deserves my vote, so I may as well ‘sell it’ to the highest bidder)

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  25. wreck1080 (3,815 comments) says:

    To start….Labours idea is absolutely nuts.

    But part of the issue is that CEO’s and other senior managers are grabbing an ever increasing slice of a companies wage output.

    Why does todays CEO earn 500 times the lowest salary when 30 years ago it was maybe 50 times . I don’t see that todays CEO’s are any cleverer.

    There certainly are some jobs out there where people not being paid fairly. But, this will always be the case and it is up to those people to learn new skills but I do recognise that this is largely impossible for some.

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  26. anonymouse (708 comments) says:

    @SW according to this
    http://www.ssc.govt.nz/sites/all/files/public-service-trend-report-2012.xls

    There were 100 staff in the core public service between 15 and 19

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  27. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    It’s not just wage relativity that’s the problem, it’s also cost inflation. Which leads to wage inflation. Which…

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  28. flipper (3,847 comments) says:

    The only change that Labour has made since Walter Nash made his infamous and specious 100 pound bribe to all taxpayers circa 1954, is the size of the bribe offered, but 100 1954 pounds = $10,000 in 2014.

    Same bribe, with two zeros added, by the same pathetic mob.

    But hang on. Are not state employee’s wages set by private sector bench marks? Oh, well never mind….

    Arnold Nordmeyer had the job if recovering the cost….and boy did he do a “good”: job on the poor misguided souls that put him in power.

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  29. davidp (3,558 comments) says:

    Cunliffe is in hock to his union backers, and we know that most union members are public servants. Vote Labour and you’ll have a government that is run for the benefit of the public service unions, rather than for the people of NZ. It’s the same as has happened in Greece and some of the US states… public servants have privileged employment and loot the country while it goes bust. Some of the US states are little more than public service pension schemes these days.

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  30. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “It is about time the rising tide lifted more than just super yachts.”

    lol the left are sad little creatures.

    ya know who will really pay for a policy like this? hard working bastards making 60k upward. i dont know many blokes earning 60k who have a super yacht.

    it looks like labour are abandoning the strategy of trying to win back the west auckland man.

    hopefully there arent enough selfish shit heads who will happily bring down an entire country for their selfish greed.

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  31. SW (235 comments) says:

    Thanks anonymouse.

    So we are talking around $100,000 a year. Lets be generous and call it $500,000 a year.

    So in 60 years this concern of DPF’s will have cost as much as Tio Point.

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  32. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    All the councils that said they’d support it have so far backed out of it…

    During the election campaign the current mayor of Dunedin said he was pushing the DCC CEO to implement a ‘living wage’. He subsequently claimed it could be done within the current budget.

    This wasn’t ‘the council’ though, he hadn’t consulted at all with his council and said there was no need to consult.

    Once they found out about it some councillors disputed it being able to be done within the current budget.

    The mayor also wanted a ‘living wage’ to be a requirement of any council contractors, but according to a statement from the CEO’s office there could be difficulties with this:

    Re contractors, it would theoretically be possible for DCC to specify in its contracts that we would only be willing to contract with employers paying over the ‘living wage’ in some instances. However in some cases, for example contracts where NZTA funding is involved, we have stringent requirements around contracting methods and having DCC impose this condition would likely be problematic.

    I don’t know if Government would have similar problems with placing demands on contractors.

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  33. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    Post title could alternatively read

    “Cunliffe- Raise private sector taxes to fund public sector pay rises”

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  34. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    SW – I think the govt should give Dime 500k a year. who cares right? in about 60 years that will add up to what we spend on the DPB every week..

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  35. nickb (3,675 comments) says:

    Interesting to See David Cunliffe is now qualifying every huge bribe with the phrase “subject to the need for fiscal responsibility”.

    What a yellow coward. Running from his promises a month into the job?

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  36. chris (589 comments) says:

    @nickb That’s his “get out of jail free card”. He can promise the world (and a pony) for now but that gives him his out when they actually create their manifesto / get into power.

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  37. SW (235 comments) says:

    dime – sorry but you make no sense ha. You are one person – the 500k would be for 500 people – and not given, but paid in wages for work.

    And what you say about DPB, how does that go against paying people moreto work? Would a bigger gap bewteen the dole and low paid work not incentivise more to go and get work?

    Regardless, can you actually imagine working 40 hours a week and living off 28k pre tax a year in NZ? That shit is crazy isn’t it?

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  38. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    An important factor is will NZ First agree to all of this? WP probably won’t commit himself “until after the election” but for Cunliffe to keep all his promises he will have to have a coalition that will agree to them all.

    Greens will agree, Mana will too. What about the Maori Party? I don’t see any way UF would go along with it.

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  39. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    SW – i was making the point that you think money is trivial.

    heres another example then:

    “how bout the government top up 500 kiwiblog peeps wages by 1000 bucks a year. just for the fuck of it. in 60 years it will be the same as *insert something YOU dont like*”.

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  40. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “And what you say about DPB, how does that go against paying people moreto work? Would a bigger gap bewteen the dole and low paid work not incentivise more to go and get work?”

    yes, i am against paying people above market rates. the easy option to to DECREASE welfare. done

    “Regardless, can you actually imagine working 40 hours a week and living off 28k pre tax a year in NZ? That shit is crazy isn’t it?”

    fuck yes i can imagine it! thats why i studied hard (well, got a degree, actually studied fuck all :) ), but i have worked fucking hard for the last 15 years to ensure i dont know what its like to like on 28 stacks. but i can imagine it. urgh.

    i just find it sad that people demand more for doing their shit job when they could put that energy into bettering themselves.

    but lefties dont agree with that. they seem to think people are stupid, its too hard, lets just take from those who achieved.

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  41. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    I think it’s a fucken great idea.

    The war put a comb through the workforce and got rid of all unessecery jobs, and this will too, along with the inflation that goes hand in hand with it as employers won’t be able to afford staff. Sales will fall. Tax receipts will too.

    Lots of women will then soon find themselves back at home as they are generally in unproductive jobs, such as being public ‘servants’, human resources ‘personel’, or ‘service workers’ in the private sector. All pointless jobs.

    The workplace will then be for the productive – the family man who can commit to working for $18.70hr – like it used to be.

    House prices will also collapse and we won’t then have any need for Labour’s CGT either.

    Government will also decrease in size and scope due to lower tax reciepts.

    I like Cunliffe – he’s more of a conservative than I ever thought possable!

    And besides, with the left making Key insulate all the homes in the country, we won’t have to put up with women whining about being barefoot in the kitchen! :cool:

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  42. Chi Hsu (96 comments) says:

    As opportunist as Labour are, DPF is clearly in full spin mode for the National Party given that he keeps referring to 16 year olds on $38,000 a year as if that’s supposedly taboo for some reason, but if it was say a 30 year old there would be no need to single them out. I have nothing but respect for a 16 year old if he or she is able to obtain work in the public sector, it clearly shows that they started thinking about earning money and getting into the work force at a young age. I wish I was as forward thinking and career focused at that age instead of spending my time on computer games.

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  43. hannity (152 comments) says:

    So why not make it $50 p.h. if legislating people out of poverty is your answer? What a mean bastard you are, only $18.95 – what’s wrong with you Liarbore people, hearts of flint, you have. What would Lenin say?

    Or $1 ph , if keeping an inefficient business afloat is your answer.

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  44. SW (235 comments) says:

    Dime – I get where you’re coming from, but there is a huge difference between saying that everyone should get paid the same regardless of abilities and saying that the lowest paid workers should be able to earn enough to actually live off.

    If everybody became business men, doctors, lawyers etc then who does the graft? You seem to ignore that cleaners are essential. Someone needs to do those jobs.

    I don’t think a cleaner’s earning 38 stack rather than 28 stacks would see people like you and I suddenly decide not to work hard and do more profitable careers!

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  45. davidp (3,558 comments) says:

    Chi hsu>I have nothing but respect for a 16 year old if he or she is able to obtain work in the public sector

    It gets back to this idea that Cunliffe is promoting of public servants on one hand with high wages, guaranteed job security, and lots of other benefits. And the rest of us who are essentially feudal serfs working to support them.

    You’re creating a society where some 16 year olds obtain a public service job and are set for life. While most 16 year olds will have to pay more tax to support them. Where is the fairness in that?

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  46. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “If everybody became business men, doctors, lawyers etc then who does the graft? You seem to ignore that cleaners are essential. Someone needs to do those jobs.”

    the left seem to think the job you start is where you end up.

    everyone i know how has money did a low paying job at some stage.

    if youre 40 and have kids and you earn 28 stacks then youre an asshole. you have kids you cant afford and youre relying on your neighbors to fund your life. you cant survive without charity. you have failed at life.

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  47. srylands (392 comments) says:

    “I don’t think a cleaner’s earning 38 stack rather than 28 stacks would see people like you and I suddenly decide not to work hard and do more profitable careers!”

    No. But it WILL mean that I decide to sack my cleaner who cleans my house every fortnight and clean it myself. One unemployed cleaner. As my marginal tax rate will be 39 cents, I also need to work longer to generate the after tax income to pay my cleaner.

    It will also mean that at my local cafe the cost of my Sunday brunch for 2 will incresae from $40 to $50. So we brunch at home. One unemployed waiter, and possibly one closed cafe.

    But fuck it. If people are so stupid bring it all on. The upside is that when you add in all the other policies it will be a one-term government. I plan on moving to Melbourne and watching the show from there for 3 years.

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  48. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    3rd world and low skilled immigrants have created the problem.

    They work for fuck all. Pay no tax. And get WFF.

    And buy up all the cheap housing.

    Now employers are to be stuck with an INFLATED “LIVING WAGE”!!!!!!!!

    3rd world and low skilled immigrants are of no benefit at all.

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  49. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    dime, I agree with your central point. The trouble is that the charity pays about the same as the work for some people and that is just not right. The incentive is not there. I knew a woman who worked in a pretty stressful job and was only a few dollars better off than if she stayed home with the kids. And she was on way above minimum wage.

    It is a difficult problem to address as I am not for increasing the burden on those who are doing well. The problem is not people being too rich, it is people being too poor.

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  50. Kleva Kiwi (281 comments) says:

    30m cost. Not likely.
    What about all the people who are earning $18.40 an hour atm. All of a sudden all these unskilled workers are getting paid the same amount to do a job of less skill. Will they not expect to get a pay rise? I know I would be pissed if I was earning said money to do a skilled job that I had spent 3 years training for and then the cleaner started getting paid the same.
    Whats the point in upskilling yourself when you can just get the same money for not trying…
    The first steps to communism.

    If you don’t want to get paid like scum then stop acting like scum and get some skills to make you worth something…

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  51. Yoza (1,678 comments) says:

    dime at 10:22 am

    if youre 40 and have kids and you earn 28 stacks then youre an asshole. you have kids you cant afford and youre relying on your neighbors to fund your life. you cant survive without charity. you have failed at life.

    vto at 9:18 am

    Horrible. horrible horrible horrible scheming snaking suppressing self-serving stinking

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  52. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    “…..Whats the point in upskilling yourself when you can just get the same money for not trying…”

    It also stops school leavers from entering the workforce as people won’t upskill and move ‘on up the ladder’.

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  53. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    thePeoplesFlag

    It is about time the rising tide lifted more than just super yachts.

    Oh yes – in 1999 we were promised that Labour policy would be a tide that lifted all boats – it failed and we ended in deep recession before the global financial crisis.

    Oops – we wanted to forget reality and fall back to socialist slogans ….. Sorry for the reality check that your ideology is a crock of shit !

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  54. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    If you don’t want to get paid like scum then stop acting like scum and get some skills to make you worth something…

    What a jumped up wanker !

    I would not call a decent person who works for a living “scum”. How about all those “scum” stop doing their jobs and see the result ? You will notice the effects of that a lot more than if many of the non-scum higher paid workers stopped doing their job. Someone who speculates on markets and produces nothing will not be missed, unlike cleaners, rubbish collectors, old folks home workers, service workers and many other low paid jobs.

    Get over yourself.

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  55. SW (235 comments) says:

    S,rylands – If you don’t mind me asking what do you currently pay your cleaner? Is it less than 18 quid an hour?

    And no, it won’t effect your local cafe unless it is run by the government. If minimum wage goes up to 18 bucks for everyone overnight your food might go up by that much (although I would be suprised if every employee at your cafe earns below 18 quid, so it is unlikely to be a 10 buck increase) – but seeing as that is not being proposed I guess it isn’t an issue.

    Dime – yes you are right, every cleaner should be a young buck on the way to being a CEO. That would be a sustainable and effective workforce!

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  56. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    Yoza#

    “The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal.” – Aristotle

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  57. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “Dime – yes you are right, every cleaner should be a young buck on the way to being a CEO. That would be a sustainable and effective workforce!”

    they dont have to be CEO’s. They should be ASPIRING to be though!

    or if they are a plumber working for a guy, aspire to be the guy who employs other plumbers, apprentices. we should all be looking to move up and better ourselves.

    and fuck i hope you dont have any influence with kids.

    “well done, youre working the drive through at KFC. now you need to join a union and get more money. this is your station in life. this is as good as it gets. we cant all be CEO’s cause society wouldnt work”.

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  58. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    SW – ever heard of a Wage/ Price spiral? They used to teach it in 3rd form economics..

    “it failed and we ended in deep recession before the global financial crisis.”

    Burt – a great point that is glossed over by the left. we were the first into recession FFS.

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  59. Bob (496 comments) says:

    As usual Labour is concentrating policy on giving bribes to the lower paid, lower skilled and lower educated in society knowing they are the only ones who will vote for them. National on the other hand will explain what it is doing for the economy such as it’s drive for FTAs and it’s overseas trade deals.

    Labour knows those lazy people who did not vote in the last election are the sort of people they rely on to get elected. I’ve yet to hear what Cunliffe’s attitude is to the drivers of our economy, those who provide jobs and our standard of living. Rather than give them encouragement he is more likely to denounce them as tax dodging “rich pricks” and John Key’s mates.

    God help us if Labour/Greens take power next election.

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  60. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    dime, I am in two minds about your way of thinking. You have worked your way “up” on your own merits and good on you. However, you are wrong to assume that you are above anyone else or are a better person for it. Some people may not base their self worth on $$$. Other people may have other priorities and that does not imply they are lessor people than you.

    By all mean be proud of what you have achieved, but it is not some gold standard all others must follow. It looks a bit like you are seeking validation for yourself.

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  61. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    “well done, youre working the drive through at KFC. now you need to join a union and get more money. this is your station in life. this is as good as it gets. we cant all be CEO’s cause society wouldnt work”.

    Cunliffe is leading the poor to believe that wealth in NZ is finite – and that rich pricks have it all.

    Key will smash Cunliffe on all the finer points, and Cunliffe will have to conceed them – as he has an MBA.

    Cunliffe is just trying to keep the Unions from rolling him. Gillard did the same. Rudd didn’t.

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  62. hannity (152 comments) says:

    “No. But it WILL mean that I decide to sack my cleaner who cleans my house every fortnight and clean it myself.”

    Go for it ,my bet is you won’t last an hour , it might teach you some humility.

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  63. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “Other people may have other priorities and that does not imply they are lessor people than you.”

    nup. i dont think that. you mention that people have other priorities – good for them, that is their choice. dont chase the dollars, just dont expect hand outs from those that do.

    “By all mean be proud of what you have achieved, but it is not some gold standard all others must follow. It looks a bit like you are seeking validation for yourself.”

    nup. i just got pushed over the edge. ever since i became a high earner i have been abused by leftists and leftist politicians. told im not paying my fair share. like im evil. so, in line with the rest of the world, i have become nastier about my politics :D

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  64. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    ya know who will really pay for a policy like this? hard working bastards making 60k upward. i dont know many blokes earning 60k who have a super yacht.

    Nope. It will be those on six figure incomes and above.

    We’ve had 40 years of economic arrangements in which almost all the rewards from growth have gone to people at the top end of the scale, as opposed to the 30 years before that where the benefits were relatively evenly shared among the population. These are widely accepted facts. The current economic system is a failure for most people.

    Why should ordinary people put up with economic rules that benefit only the super wealthy? We know that alternatives are possible, and have been demonstrated to be workable.

    If you don’t like it, then cry more.

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  65. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    nup. i dont think that. you mention that people have other priorities – good for them, that is their choice. dont chase the dollars, just dont expect hand outs from those that do.

    You mean like handouts to banks, or aluminium smelters/

    You are too funny, Dime.

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  66. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    nup. i just got pushed over the edge. ever since i became a high earner.

    I have trouble imagining you could run a hot dog stand based on your posts here.

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  67. OTGO (526 comments) says:

    So let me get this straight. Labour will legislate a pay rise of 10k but the workers won’t have to increase productivity?

    Might as well pay people to be home sick, have 4 weeks off every year, have full pay for public holidays, bereavement leave, maternal and paternal leave, training leave etc…

    Oh hang on

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  68. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    dime, I see your point. That is why I am careful in my words. I say that the problem is not too many rich, it is too many poor. The more well off people we have the better.

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  69. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    Tom – you assume im ok with corporate hand outs?

    Im not a leftist, therefor im allowed to disagree with the party i vote for.

    Dime earns a couple of hundred stacks, Dime cant afford a super yacht.

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  70. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    “I have trouble imagining you could run a hot dog stand based on your posts here.”

    Tom, that is a failure of your imagination, not dimes ability. You make some good points, but dont go Redbaiter on us :)

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  71. Kleva Kiwi (281 comments) says:

    “What a jumped up wanker !

    I would not call a decent person who works for a living “scum”. How about all those “scum” stop doing their jobs and see the result ? You will notice the effects of that a lot more than if many of the non-scum higher paid workers stopped doing their job. Someone who speculates on markets and produces nothing will not be missed, unlike cleaners, rubbish collectors, old folks home workers, service workers and many other low paid jobs.

    Get over yourself.”

    If a 40 year old with children is still earning below $18.40 an hour then they are scum. They are because they have brought a child into this world with no way to support them, and expect their neighbours etc to do all the heavy lifting for them. Who is the victim here? Here is a clue. Its the children.

    If you do menial tasks you will get menial pay. Try and justify it as much as you want but there is no way the cleaner should be paid as much as the doctor.

    Like many people, I started working life in a supermarket after school (on $4.50 an hour). I’m now project managing large engineering jobs, and I am happy about where I started and the things it taught me. I went and visited said supermarket the other day and seen that several of the other people that worked there after school with me are still there. Struggling to feed their families and playing the victim cards…

    Maybe scum is to harsh a word to be using, but it seams over emotive phrasing is the only way to get the attention of the Chardonnay Socialists these days. How about you get over yourself…

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  72. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    Here’s a simple question for you:

    Why should anyone of average income or below agree to a set of economic rules that distribute the results of growth to only the top 10% of society?

    Can you explain to them why it is in their interest to agree to that set of rules as opposed to a set of rules in which everyone who wants to has a job, and the benefits of growth are more evenly shared.

    Imagine a random average person wanting to immigrate to a country. What reason could you give them to prefer New Zealand’s economic system over Sweden’s?

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  73. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    If you do menial tasks you will get menial pay. Try and justify it as much as you want but there is no way the cleaner should be paid as much as the doctor.

    Who said that?

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  74. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    Tom, that is a failure of your imagination, not dimes ability.

    Well, he can’t spell.

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  75. Sir Cullen's Sidekick (839 comments) says:

    I don’t see why you people are agitated with this sensible policy. Cunliffe is adored by the people of NZ. Last two opinions polls show a clear trend of Labour/Green government once Cunliffe has taken over. So if he has the mandate of the people to do what he wants, what is your problem? I think people are tempted by the extra 10K and started supporting Labour. This policy is a sure vote winner. People of South Auckland are not going to worry how this will be funded. All they see is extra 10K in the bank.

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  76. Ed Snack (1,801 comments) says:

    Geez Hannity, no need to project like that. I bet Cunliffe has his house cleaned by someone else, wouldn’t stoop to that himself. I used cleaners for a while then canned it when the “rich prick” tax came in, and haven’t bothered to go back to it. It’s simply a matter of what to do with your discretionary earnings.

    This policy is simple pandering to the ignorant and the resentful greedy, and we see a few of those posting don’t we ? If you have children, you’ll already get WWF and earn pretty much the same as being promised, if you don’t have children you will get paid more if you retain you job. So easy to promise it for government employees because as always with the left, they love to look generous with other peoples money. Always the same, here, look how benevolently wonderful I am, have some more of someone else’s work if you vote for me.

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  77. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @mikemikemikemike

    Habe you ever actually made hiring decisions in a low wage sector of the economy? Let’s say you’ve got to select between two applicants for a checkout operator position. On the one-hand, you have a 40 year old, married woman who’s after a bit more income for her family.On the other hand, you’ve got a 16 year old school kid looking for their first job.

    The work’s not hard, and theoretically any able bodied person can do it. But if you have to pay them the same, it’s a bit of a no-brainer. Hire the 40 year old, and she’s probably just going to turn up, do her shift, and go home. Hire the 16 year old, and you’re going to need to give them time off for exams, school trips, sporting events etc. They also won’t have references or a track record of steady work.

    When you raise the minimum wage, you basically take away the ability for people without good track records to be able to compete against people who do. You deny them the means of climbing into higher paying positions. This isn’t theoretical, btw, I was once a manager in a lower paying sector of the economy and when they abolished youth rates the direction was clear – no more high school kids.

    It’s like regulation – favoured by both Big Government and Big Business alike. People like Yoza support it because it gives them what they desire most of all – control over what other people say and do and how they act. Big Business advocates also get what they most desire, high barriers to entry that crowd out smaller competitors.

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  78. Bill Ted (88 comments) says:

    You raise some fairly valid points Tom, but you’re praying for an idealistic world not the one we live in. We’re not born on equal footing. The biggest influence in whether you’ll succeed in life or not is who you’re born to. The Government can’t change that. You can legislate to pay people more, but the fact is that’s just splitting the pie differently, not growing it. And if you’re so focussed on that one aspect then you’ll never address the core issues our country faces, which is the entrenchment of the welfare state and an education system that has been hijacked by unions who represent the interests of teachers, not students. Patting yourself on the back for paying people more doesn’t actually change anything. It just rewards the people who have jobs and ensures the status quo remains, while those sitting on the margins get screwed again. If they can’t find a job at minimum wage, they’ll never get one at $19 an hour. It’s sad, but it’s true.

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  79. srylands (392 comments) says:

    >>SW (88) Says:

    October 10th, 2013 at 10:41 am

    “S,rylands [sic] – If you don’t mind me asking what do you currently pay your cleaner? Is it less than 18 quid an hour?

    And no, it won’t effect your local cafe unless it is run by the government.”

    I pay my cleaner $27 per hour because he is brilliant. He is the best I have ever seen. Which is why he gets paid $27 per hour by his contract manager. The contractor has different contract cleaners on offer. You can get Fred who is top notch, or you can get one at $20 or one at $13.75. The company is up front that their cheap cleaners will not do the same job as Fred. I tested them. He was correct.

    Now if Fred’s $13.75 workmate suddenly gets $18.40 per hour, do you think Fred will still be happy with $27? It is mad to think that lifting the minimum wage to $18.40 will only raise the nominal wages of those currently receiving between $13.75 and $18.40.

    Back to the café – Yes I know that the current proposal is only for government workers, but that will never stick. For a start it is mad – why on earth would you have different wage regulations applying to the public and private sectors?

    I have discussed with my local café owner the impact of raising minimum wages to $18.40 per hour. He currently employs four waiting staff. He pays his best waiting staff member $20 per hour. He pays two $16 per hour, and he employs a school kid on $13.75. I asked him what he would do if the minimum wage went up to $18.40. He was very clear:

    1. Sack the $13.75 per hour school kid immediately.

    2. Lift his best staff member to $22 per hour.

    3. Pay his other 2 staff the minimum wage, but reduce their hours marginally.

    4. Get his wife to take on some of the waiting at tables.

    5. Do his best to keep his prices stable so he doesn’t lose customers – but he would watch his competitors.

    So there you have it – his least skilled (and cheapest) staff member is sacked. His priority is to keep his best and most expensive staff member on deck – remember this is the staff member that he currently VOLUNTARILY pays $20 per hour. The other two staff have their pay go up but their hours recued so they are no better off.

    So at my local cafe, looks like I might be lucky in the short term by having my $40 brunch price maintained. But I might have slower waiting service. The big impact will be a 17 year old girl who is now unemployed.

    The left dreamers really need to get out and talk to more café owners. They would learn a lot.

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  80. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    You raise some fairly valid points Tom, but you’re praying for an idealistic world not the one we live in. We’re not born on equal footing. The biggest influence in whether you’ll succeed in life or not is who you’re born to. The Government can’t change that. You can legislate to pay people more, but the fact is that’s just splitting the pie differently, not growing it. And if you’re so focussed on that one aspect then you’ll never address the core issues our country faces, which is the entrenchment of the welfare state and an education system that has been hijacked by unions who represent the interests of teachers, not students.

    I disagee. The kind of economy I favour already exists, and has existed for decades in the Nordic countries. It’s economic feasibility is not in question.

    You have to explain to me why the a person on the average wage should prefer our system to theirs. Frankly, it’s a no brainer. Regular folks are far better off in say, Sweden or Finland, than they are here.

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  81. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    I pay my cleaner $27 per hour because he is brilliant. He is the best I have ever seen.

    We paid financiers vastly more than that, and they fucked up the world economy.

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  82. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “I have trouble imagining you could run a hot dog stand based on your posts here.”

    lol i know you cant tom and it kills you :)

    another academic who cant cut it in real life.

    its funny how those with no argument always come back to spelling, typos, grammar.

    unlike yourself who chooses to do bugga all work while demanding top ups from govt, Dime is a busy boy. i churn these things out pretty quickly, without proof reading. i thought youd be smart enough to get the gist. thats all that counts :D

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  83. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    “Well, he can’t spell.”

    Tom, so lack of spelling ability is no barrier to success then…

    You are getting dangerously close to the elitist mindset you are opposing.

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  84. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “We paid financiers vastly more than that, and they fucked up the world economy.”

    lol love the “we”. oh thats right. all money belongs to the state and if you get some through doing a job youre just lucky. cause afterall, lots of people can do that job.

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  85. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    Tom, so lack of spelling ability is no barrier to success then…

    A general inability to reason usually is.

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  86. srylands (392 comments) says:

    “We paid financiers vastly more than that, and they fucked up the world economy.”

    Who is this “we” Communist Tom? I doubt you have employed anyone in your life. And I would suggest that politicians did more to fuck up the world economy than banks. – like cheer leading low equity home loans for risky borrowers. Lucky our politicians don’t do that. Oh wait..

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  87. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    lol i know you cant tom and it kills you

    Living your life would require a voluntary lobotomy, so no thanks. :)

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  88. Tom Jackson (2,529 comments) says:

    Who is this “we” Communist Tom? I doubt you have employed anyone in your life.

    Do you think they paid themselves?

    And it’s the old “they made us give blacks mortgages” line that has been thoroughly discredited.

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  89. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    hmm starting to think tom has a personality disorder. we throw the word narcissist around a lot, but this clown may just be the real deal.

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  90. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    They were paid by people who freely made the decision to engage them. Their payments (generally) weren’t appropriated from public funds. Through the work financiers have done, a lot of public good has come through the allocation of capital into productive enterprises. they have been handsomely rewarded, but everyone has benefited. Are you saying we would be better off without a private banking and finance sector?

    True, when they messed up in the mid-2000s (partly caused by government distortions but also by greed) their companies were bailed out. I agree that they shouldn’t have, but I didn’t support Obama. Did you?

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  91. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Tom, I know people who have trouble reading and writing and are not especially bright, who are doing very well for themselves. One thing they all have in common is they are determined and hard workers. None was born with a silver spoon in their mouths. Class discrimination works both ways mate.

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  92. pct (19 comments) says:

    It is bullshit and the full cost of it is unknown.

    Say they move everyone on minimum up to $18.95 per hour. What about everyone already on $18.95 ph? They wont be happy they are being paid the same as the cleaner so their wage relativity needs to be maintained so up they go. And then the next group etc and so it goes on and on.

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  93. chris (589 comments) says:

    Regular folks are far better off in say, Sweden or Finland, than they are here.

    You do know they don’t have minimum wage laws in those countries? Don’t you? Nor do they have them in Norway, Denmark or Germany.

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  94. flipper (3,847 comments) says:

    Just in case it is forgotten by those who think $18.40 (or whatever) is the cost…..

    PLEASE REMEMBER THAT on top of that there will be
    * ACC premiums
    * Holiday pay – 4 wks
    * Sick leave
    * Kiwisaver
    * Further admin costs

    bringing the real total to about $23.50……

    And then you start on the consequential relativity scale adjustments for all other employees….

    SHIT…. but that is labour and F/wits like Charlie Waldegrave.

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  95. labrator (1,849 comments) says:

    Imagine a random average person wanting to immigrate to a country. What reason could you give them to prefer New Zealand’s economic system over Sweden’s?

    Doesn’t Sweden have no minimum wage?

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  96. Bill Ted (88 comments) says:

    I don’t disagree with you on the Nordic countries Tom, but their economies are incomparable. Norway, for example, has thrived on its oil resources and set itself up exceptionally well to benefit from this wealth. All the Nordic countries also have the benefit of geography – their export markets are on their doorstep. New Zealand doesn’t share these advantages, so there’s no point longing after what we don’t have. I personally wouldn’t want to move to Sweden etc because I prefer the lifestyle NZ has to offer, even if my earning potential was much greater there and the education system is arguably better for my kids.

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  97. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    Bill Ted – NZ could set itself up quite nicely from mineral wealth too. unfortunately we are not allowed. cause ummm i dunno. tourists or something

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  98. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    We could afford to pay more if Labour agreed to remove regulatory costs, free up natural resources and reduce the cost of doing business. But the idiots are contemplating the opposite.

    I am all for the lowest paid getting more, but it needs to be economically viable. As it is now, it is just a classic election bribe. Unless they change a bunch of other things we simply can not afford it.

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  99. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @chris – LOL.

    Quite correct. I never tire of pointing that out to people – especially those who irrationally worship anything Northern European.

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  100. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    Kea “I am all for the lowest paid getting more, but it needs to be economically viable. ….. Unless they change a bunch of other things we simply can not afford it”

    That is the biggest load of stinky baloney in the country. New Zealand is rich enough and well able to afford to pay everyone an income that is enough to provide a decent home and provisions. For fucks sake our GDP is about $US30,000 per person per year, which is more than ample.

    The problem of course is that the existing redistribution system for the nations wealth is all fucked up. It leads to some receiving untold riches and others not being able to provide good basics.

    Wake up Kea, NZ is rich and there is more than enough to go around. Don’t buy into that crap you spouted – it is simply wrong.

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  101. OneTrack (2,829 comments) says:

    vto – Communism has failed wherever it has been tried.

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  102. Than (440 comments) says:

    For fucks sake our GDP is about $US30,000 per person per year, which is more than ample.

    NZ GDP per capita is ~$32,000 (according to a quick Google). A 40 hour week at the current minimum wage ($13.75) over 52 weeks pays $28,600. A 40 hour week at the “living wage” ($18.60) over 52 weeks pays $38,688. You’ll notice that the current minimum wage is less than our GDP per capita, but not by a huge amount. The “living wage” is far above our GDP per capita, and completely unaffordable.

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  103. labrator (1,849 comments) says:

    New Zealand is rich enough and well able to afford to pay everyone an income that is enough to provide a decent home and provisions.

    You mean the one where we’re borrowing hundreds of millions a week to pay the bills? And the one where the governments expenditure is 35% of GDP?

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  104. OneTrack (2,829 comments) says:

    Tom – “We paid financiers vastly more than that, and they fucked up the world economy”

    No, Clinton forced the banks to give loans to poor people “because they deserved it”. The loans were called sub-prime because of the additional risk that they wouldn’t be paid back. The banks were told the US Reserve?? would effectively guarantee the loans. The banks then lost track of the additional risk they were taking on. So, yes the banks fucked up, but a free-spending, big state politician set the wheels in motion.

    And, look. Cunliffe wants to do a Clinton here as well. FFS – wont these guys ever learn.

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  105. OneTrack (2,829 comments) says:

    “For fucks sake our GDP is about $US30,000 per person per year, which is more than ample”

    Wonder what our GDP will be once Cunliffe and the Greens have got started?

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  106. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    vto, you can not simply take money from the better off and spread it around. Making the rich poorer is not the way to deal with the problem. It is their money, let them keep it. Taking wealth away does not make more wealth, it makes less.

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  107. srylands (392 comments) says:

    “Wake up Kea, NZ is rich and there is more than enough to go around. Don’t buy into that crap you spouted – it is simply wrong.”

    Bloody hell I thought your brand of economic horror was restricted to The Standard. Do yiou also go for printing money?

    You seem to have this fantasy that New Zealand’s wealth is some static pie that can be divided up differently. Our prosperity depends on an efficient economy. In turn that requires markets that allocate resources efficiently, and reward risk, effort, and investment in human capital.

    At $18.40 per hour, New Zealand would have the highest minimum wage in the world (on a par with Australia) and by far the highest relative to GDP per capita. If we are trying to become prosperous does that seem counter-intuitive to you? Ever wondered why other nations do not adopt these policies?

    I have a 22 year old son who is studying and struggling to find part time work. I (obviously) know him well. The idea that anyone would employ him on $18.40 per hour is ridiculous. Such a policy is simply condemning him to permanent unemployment. I would reduce the minimum wage to $10 per hour and index it annually to keep its ratio to the median constant. For under 18 year olds no minimum wage.

    The economy is not some lump of wealth that can get cut up and grow forever. You are prosing that the state use its coercive powers to compel some people to pay others more than they are worth. The response will be via both prices and employment.

    Back to the micro picture – the MW is a MINIMUM. As I have posted separately, I pay my cleaner $27 per hour. At that price he has a full work load and prospective clients on a waiting list. Why? Because he is worth it. He has work mates on $13.75. Do you think they might look at him and ask “What the fuck?” and do something about it.

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  108. Chi Hsu (96 comments) says:

    davidp (2,963) Says:
    October 10th, 2013 at 10:20 am

    It gets back to this idea that Cunliffe is promoting of public servants on one hand with high wages, guaranteed job security, and lots of other benefits. And the rest of us who are essentially feudal serfs working to support them.

    You’re creating a society where some 16 year olds obtain a public service job and are set for life. While most 16 year olds will have to pay more tax to support them. Where is the fairness in that?

    As mentioned in my first post, I agree that Labour are being opportunist. However, I don’t see why DPF feels the need to be constantly referring to the example of 16 year olds, as if the fact that they are 16 is an issue. Why not also go out of his way to point out that a female worker would be getting a $10,000 increase, or a Maori worker would be getting a $10,000 increase? In fact, why not rewrite the last sentence of his post to say: “Insane. No homosexual in the public sector on less than $38,000 a year full-time.” I worked for the Ministry of Justice when I was 24 as a Court Reporter and the only skills that were required were typing skills. I could have easily done the same job when I was 16. If DPF were to have a problem with my salary at that time being raised by $10,000, I don’t see the need nor relevance in pointing out my age when criticising the policy.

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  109. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “The banks then lost track of the additional risk they were taking on. So, yes the banks fucked up, but a free-spending, big state politician set the wheels in motion.”

    I think it was more that the banks were dirtbags :D but hey, they were told to lend money and it was guarenteed. why wouldnt ya go nuts!

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  110. srylands (392 comments) says:

    “The “living wage” is far above our GDP per capita, and completely unaffordable.”

    Funnily, Argentina now has a nominal minimum wage higher than GDP per capita (110% at 2013). Looks like we will be following a model economy! Why the hell doesn’t the media pick up on such obvious warning signs and call Labour out?

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  111. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    Kea, it is not “their money”, it is the nations wealth, which gets concentrated in certain hands and denied other hands by means of the current distribution system. This is the problem. People who claim that the current distribution system of the nations wealth is some kind of natural order are deluded – the wealth distribution is the result of things like income taxes, lack of taxes on other money-making enterprises, WFF, subsidies to business, infrastructure provision, social welfare, minimum wage rates, etc on it goes. It is entirely the result of societal (read government) intrusion already. There aint nothing natural about the current wealth distribution. Why on earth would you think that it is?

    You are seeing the problem from upside down.

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  112. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    One thing is for sure, unless the people at the bottom get enough to live on, we can expect to see NZ move further and further to the left. If we want to preserve a free market environment then we can not leave too many behind. History has shown that while socialism does not work, people will try it if they are desperate.

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  113. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    vto – lol silly communist.

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  114. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    @vto you keep referring to “the current distribution system” – what sort of distribution system do you prefer?

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  115. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    srylands

    Funnily, Argentina now has a nominal minimum wage higher than GDP per capita (110% at 2013). Looks like we will be following a model economy! Why the hell doesn’t the media pick up on such obvious warning signs and call Labour out?

    Indeed…. I recall when Dr Muppet ideology Cullen was in his “must never ever cut taxes because $60,000 is rich and will be in 3,000 years time” mode he was accusing the journalists of cooking up a storm because they wanted a tax cut …. Perhaps the journalists decided that having forced the idiot finance minister Cullen to cut taxes causing a recession that they better not ever call Labour out on their insance ideology that is doomed to fail policy ever again.

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  116. Yoza (1,678 comments) says:

    How is it that so many of our ‘hard working’ right wing compatriots can spend all day posting their cheesy anecdotes on Kiwiblog?

    OneTrack 12:29 pm

    vto – Communism has failed wherever it has been tried.

    It cured the Romanovs.

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  117. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    yoza – cause a lot of us are in our offices and can multitask..

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  118. stigie (1,004 comments) says:

    How can you manage all day Yoza ?

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  119. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    One thing is for sure, unless the people at the bottom get enough to live on, we can expect to see NZ move further and further to the left. If we want to preserve a free market environment then we can not leave too many behind. History has shown that while socialism does not work, people will try it if they are desperate.

    In my university days, it was occasionally seriously suggested to me that as a leftist, I should vote for ACT, in order to help make things bad enough that socialism becomes more appealing to more people.

    It’s an interesting complement to a leftist criticism of social democrats like the Greens and (in theory) Labour – the welfare state keeps people just happy enough to put up with suffering unnecessarily from capitalism.

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  120. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Anyone recall the $20 Christmas bonus promised to beneficiaries in the 1999 election by Labour – it seems the “sense of entitlement to other peoples money” class now want more than a block of cheese or two to induce them to vote for certain economic destruction over 6 years – I wonder where Labour policy will take us in 100 years time…

    Vote Labour and own the world !!!!

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  121. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    In my university days, it was occasionally seriously suggested to me that as a leftist, I should vote for ACT, in order to help make things bad enough that socialism becomes more appealing to more people.

    An ideology that would happily see people suffer to justify itself is indeed a sick ideology….

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  122. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    Pete George “you keep referring to “the current distribution system” – what sort of distribution system do you prefer?”

    Pete, the current system is fundamentally a workable one, however the settings around it need adjusting to get the spread of the nations wealth more even and just.

    Example – today a CEO may earn up to 50x their average worker, whereas in the past it was maybe 5x. This is out of whack. Further example – the minimum wage is not enough to live on. This is out of whack.

    Not sure why this is so difficult.

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  123. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    however the settings around it need adjusting to get the spread of the nations wealth more even and just.

    Social engineering alert !!!!!!!

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  124. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    the thumbs up and the thumbs down kiwiblog system is nuts.

    all it does is reinforce how unbalanced the readers and posters are on here, and indicates nothing to do with the validity of the arguments. lol how silly.

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  125. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    burt the distribution system is already engineered – don’t you see that? try opening the other eye.

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  126. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    An ideology that would happily see people suffer to justify itself is indeed a sick ideology….

    That was more or less my response, Burt. My belief was then, and still is today, that the way we get somewhere will have an unavoidable effect on where we get.

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  127. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Example – today a CEO may earn up to 50x their average worker, whereas in the past it was maybe 5x. This is out of whack. Further example – the minimum wage is not enough to live on. This is out of whack.

    vto is right about that. It is absurd that CEO’s are getting paid money like that, while others in the company can not get enough to live on. If they can afford to pay that much to some, then they can afford to pay a fair wage to others. That is not communism and will not bankrupt the company.

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  128. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    How is it that so many of our ‘hard working’ right wing compatriots can spend all day posting their cheesy anecdotes on Kiwiblog?

    Because we can manage our time.

    Should you not be out job hunting Yoza ?

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  129. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    vto – I agree that top end earnings have got grossly out of whack, but part of the reason for that is to be competitive on a world market. If companies still paid 5x the exodus of skilled and well educated people would be far worse than it already is.

    The minimum wage is enough to live on for some people in some places. In fact pretty much everyone on the minimum wage manages to live, although with difficulty for some. I’ve had difficulty living on wages significantly higher than the lowest wages when my family and mortgage commitments have been high, especially when I was paying 18.5% interest.

    It would be great if everyone had comfortable incomes and comfortable houses with no financial worries, but the reality of living is it’s not always easy. Even if someone comes up with a never-tried-before formula of income distribution that gets the balance just right many people will find that they don’t have enough to be as happy as they want to be.

    Everyone wants a bit more income and an easier life. The funny thing is that the most satisfying achievements of my life have involved hard work and difficulties had to be overcome, and none of that was provided by the Government redistributing wealth.

    Life is difficult. Success is bloody hard, and won’t come with a magic wand or a hand out.

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  130. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    vto is right about that. It is absurd that CEO’s are getting paid money like that, while others in the company can not get enough to live on. If they can afford to pay that much to some, then they can afford to pay a fair wage to others. That is not communism and will not bankrupt the company.

    The problem is that, for people who have grown up in the existing system, it is transparent and obvious that those CEOs have freely negotiated their salaries, as have those on the lowest wages in the company. Because it has all been done freely and without coercion, the mechanic by which that wealth is distributed is considered fair, and the fairness of the end result is either irrelevant or nonsensical (“end results aren’t fair or unfair, only the ways they’re reached”).

    That means that any change in how that wealth is distributed by default in the existing system has to be effected by coercion, usually state coercion (sometimes union coercion), which leaves even those advocating it apologising for it as a kind of necessary evil.

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  131. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    “…..Kea, it is not “their money”, it is the nations wealth, which gets concentrated in certain hands and denied other hands by means of the current distribution system…..”

    OMG.

    Wealth creation isn’t finite y’know – as your CGT implies! :cool:

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  132. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “vto is right about that. It is absurd that CEO’s are getting paid money like that, while others in the company can not get enough to live on.”

    they get paid what they are worth.

    A good CEO can add millions/ billions to the value of the company. Course, that goes the other way too.

    Recent example – Ballmar says hes leaving microsoft and the market cap jumps 7 billion…

    there are some amazing CEO’s out there, worth every cent.

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  133. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Ryan Sproull, I agree with you how this came about.

    But do you agree that we will see NZ increasingly move to the left unless we improve the lot of the have-nots ? I am not suggesting a solution, just remarking on the problem. As the have-nots increase in number we will [and are] seeing NZ lurch further and further to the left. Right wing ideology is not going to change that or convince anyone. People need to see things improve or this trend will continue.

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  134. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    But do you agree that we will see NZ increasingly move to the left unless we improve the lot of the have-nots ? I am not suggesting a solution, just remarking on the problem. As the have-nots increase in number we will [and are] seeing NZ lurch further and further to the left. Right wing ideology is not going to change that or convince anyone. People need to see things improve or this trend will continue.

    Isn’t improving the lot of the have-nots exactly what NZ moving to the left is?

    Or are you suggesting the haves increase their charitable donations to reduce the appeal of state-enforced wealth redistribution?

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  135. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    they get paid what they are worth.

    dime, sorry mate but that is utter BULLSHIT !

    CEO’s get paid insane money even when they destroy the company or fail to perform. There are plenty of examples of that. At that level it is a self serving wankfest with everyone paying each other more and more. These are not self made men, they are self serving men who are paid by others like them.

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  136. Than (440 comments) says:

    Funnily, Argentina now has a nominal minimum wage higher than GDP per capita (110% at 2013). Looks like we will be following a model economy!

    A country where inflation is 9-10% (officially; many independent economists think the real figure is closer to 25%) is not a model I’d like to follow. Even for those people getting a pay rise from $13.75 to $18.60, after 18 months or so of 25% inflation they’re actually worse off in purchasing-power terms.

    But thank you, that is a good real-world example of exactly the sort of unintended consequences high minimum wages create.

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  137. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I agree that some CEOs get paid way too much. For that reason, I don’t buy shares in publicly traded companies or other large entitites. You don’t have to either. A couple of years ago, the CEO of Westpac’s salary topped $5,000,000. That seems excessive to me – but then, the only people actually affected by it are the shareholders of Westpac.

    The only annoying thing is that it does set the curve pretty high for Chief Executives generally, including those of which the Crown is the shareholder. As the Crown gets most of it’s money from me (in conjunction with everyone else in the tax generating economy) that does kind of affect me. The solution might be for the government to sell it’s shares in what are otherwise commercial enterprises.

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  138. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    “Isn’t improving the lot of the have-nots exactly what NZ moving to the left is?”

    Ryan, no.

    That is robbing some to pay others. It is not wealth creation, it is re-distribution and ends in everyone being worse off. Though grossly overpaid CEO’s are an exception.

    I think you missed my point.

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  139. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    Cato
    The CEs of non-commercial government entitities would still expect to be remunerated according to what private-sector CEs earn. Perhaps not at the same rate, but they would argue that they possess a generic set of senior management skills that should attract competitive remuneration.

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  140. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    Ryan, no.

    That is robbing some to pay others. It is not wealth creation, it is re-distribution and ends in everyone being worse off. Though grossly overpaid CEO’s are an exception.

    I think you missed my point.

    I think I must have, sorry. What do you mean by improving the lot of the have-nots if not wealth redistribution? Wealth creation? Make the pie bigger so that there are bigger small slices (well, bigger crumbs) for the have-nots?

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  141. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    Kea – of course there are failures out there. thats capitalism.

    look at dudes like Howard Schultz, CEO of starbucks. Look at what happened in the 8 years after he left and then since his return.

    How about Alan Mulally who is running ford. Microsoft want him bad. Great CEO.

    the flipside are things like that woman who ran telecom for a few years. just awful

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  142. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I’m actually reading Modern Times by the great Paul Johnson at the moment.

    Do you know what the weird thing about Argentina is?From the mid 19th century it’s economy grew pretty steadily until after WW2 when, at its acme, it was about as rich as the United States. Then Juan Peron, the David Cunliffe of his day, became president and well, let the renowned historian Paul Johnson

    “As President, Perón gave a classic demonstration, in the name of socialism and nationalism, of how to wreck an economy. He nationalised the Central Bank, railways, communications, gas, electricity, fishing, air-transport, steel and insurance. He set up a state marketing agency for exports. He created Big Government and a welfare state in one bound: spending on public services, as a percentage of GNP, rose from 19.5 to 29.5 per cent in five years. He had no system of priorities. He told the people they would get everything at once. In theory they did. The workers were given thirteen months’ pay for a year’s work; holidays with pay; social benefits at a Scandinavian level. He would track down a highly successful firm which spent lavishly on its workers and force all firms to copy its practices, regardless of their resources. At the same time he carried out a frontal assault on the agricultural sector, Argentina’s main source of internal capital. By 1951 he had exhausted the reserves and decapitalized the country, wrecked the balance of payments and built wage-inflation into the system. Next year drought struck the land and brought the crisis into the open. …

    [H]is successors could never get back to the minimum government which had allowed Argentina to become wealthy. Too many vested interests had been created: a huge, parasitical state, over-powerful unions, a vast army of public employees. It is one of the dismal lessons of the twentieth century that, once a state is allowed to expand, it is almost impossible to contract it.”

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  143. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    dime
    You open an interesting point – do the guys (mostly guys anyway) on the megabucks really deserve them and is that high pay an indication of whether they will do a good job?

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  144. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    You open an interesting point – do the guys (mostly guys anyway) on the megabucks really deserve them and is that high pay an indication of whether they will do a good job?

    Take a step back and everyone explain what they mean by “deserve”.

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  145. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @mikenmild

    Let them think what they want. I would like them to be paid less, taking into account the commercial risk they assume (none); their relative job security (high) and what the taxpayers, through their elected representatives, are actually willing to pay.

    If they don’t like it, they can go and find work in the real economy – and good luck to them in finding work that pays as well and requires them to work no harder than they do in the civil service.

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  146. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    Cato
    I wonder if your desire for those senior public service managers to be paid less would provide scope for the lower paid in the sector to be paid more.

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  147. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    “…..vto is right about that. It is absurd that CEO’s are getting paid money like that, while others in the company can not get enough to live on. If they can afford to pay that much to some, then they can afford to pay a fair wage to others. That is not communism and will not bankrupt the company…..’

    Kea ‘fair’ is arbitary. It’s a nonsense arguement unless it is about a persons pay being ‘quantified’. Employers are not responsable for the cost of living as it’s not within the parameters of running a business. It’s that simple. It’s a legal matter!

    Wages are simply about supply and demand as people leave unskilled jobs for other unskilled jobs that pay $1hr more. There are just too many unskilled workers in NZ which leads to minimum rates being applied everywhere.

    However, the biggest issue about ‘fairness’ is one of ‘quantification’, the fact that workers A & B, who do the very same job, are not paid a differential for doing more or less than eachother.

    It’s far easier and less problematic for employers to bullshit other workers when they want their pay ‘quantified’. Believe me, they will pull every trick in the book not to quantify your work.

    When I once said to an employer in NZ “I’m doing this much work for $14hr and he’s doing 50% less, so then he should be on $7hr, but he’s not as the minimum wage is $9.” I was told ” We are not allowed to talk about other peoples incomes as it’s a private matter between us and them, and the law says so.”

    And that’s why I left shithole NZ.

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  148. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    dime, I agree with your core points. But it is no use waving airly and saying people are getting paid what they are worth. Many are not. Some are getting paid less than they are worth and some are getting paid way more than they are worth. If someones job is not “worth” a liveable wage, then why is that job even being done ? The fact is those low paid jobs are essential, unlike the overpaid CEO’s.

    Unless this is sorted out the lefties will come for your money. They can, they will and they ARE doing that. You will not fight them off with ideology either.

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  149. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    “…..Take a step back and everyone explain what they mean by “deserve”…..”

    Ryan, it’s performanced based, and that is negotiated at the interview – more or less.

    Or in otherwords are you saying that the decision makers at the interview are all stupid and are paying over the odds?

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  150. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    Kea – the left will always come for other peoples money.

    i know the media keep telling everyone how poor they are, but we are a longggggggggg way from a socialist uprising.

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  151. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    Unless this is sorted out the lefties will come for your money. They can, they will and they ARE doing that. You will not fight them off with ideology either.

    I still don’t understand how you’re suggesting it be sorted out. Voluntary minimum-wage increases to preempt and prevent mandatory minimum-wage increases?

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  152. Kleva Kiwi (281 comments) says:

    “Regular folks are far better off in say, Sweden or Finland, than they are here.”

    Tom, you do realise you have also highlighted some of the most expensive countries in the world to live in. They may well get “paid” more however everything costs an order of magnitude greater.

    I recently just came back from visiting Stockholm. I could believe it was more expensive than London but I was blown away at just how much more it was. I would never consider living there, there is so many rules and the cost is to high.

    Germany however, is incredible. Very little of all this BS compared to most other European countries, yet I could still catch the underground for less than 2 euro, get a meal for 5, a beer for under 2 etc. They have very little of this Marxist BS comparatively and are much better off for it.

    Those Scandinavian counties you hold in such high regard have far more problems than you think they do. As with any Socialist system they are just good at covering it up.

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  153. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    Ryan, it’s performanced based, and that is negotiated at the interview – more or less.

    Or in otherwords are you saying that the decision makers at the interview are all stupid and are paying over the odds?

    All I was saying, Harriet, was that until everyone explains what they personally mean by “deserve”, a discussion about whether or not CEOs “deserve” their pay is not going to be productive. You say “deserving” is performance-based. Someone else says it’s needs-based. Someone else says it’s virtue-based. Someone else says it’s utility-based. And you’ll all be using the same word to mean different things and getting frustrated with each other when none of you make sense to each other.

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  154. Reid (16,111 comments) says:

    What do you mean by improving the lot of the have-nots if not wealth redistribution?

    How about we start by teaching the have-nots when they’re very very young that they can be one of the haves, there is nothing stopping them except themselves and this is how you do it. And if you don’t do that then you’re going to wind up a cleaner or a factory worker like your mum and dad and life will be hard, you won’t be very happy at all and lots of politicians will lie to you by telling you it’s not your fault because you’ve been opwessed by some unexplained invisible monster and if you vote for them, they’ll pick you up and carry you out of your misery without you having to do a damn thing. So you either get with the program right now, little Johnny, Sally or Rangi, or have the same life as mum and dad do. Your choice.

    And how about we keep saying that to them until 100% of them understand what we’re saying and we pick them up when they fall while they’re learning and we make sure no bastards like mum or dad or uncle jimbob hold them back if they’ve really determined that they want to get with the program?

    Do you think that’d work?

    until everyone explains what they personally mean by “deserve”

    I’ve often thought that what you could do is pay them not to come into work for six months and don’t put anyone into the acting position and see what happens, and if nothing does then we don’t need to pay them as much as we were originally thinking of.

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  155. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I think I must have, sorry. What do you mean by improving the lot of the have-nots if not wealth redistribution? Wealth creation? Make the pie bigger so that there are bigger small slices (well, bigger crumbs) for the have-nots?

    Ryan, yes. We need to lift the standard for everybody and the only way I can see that happening is to create more wealth. It is no use telling folk on the lowest incomes that the economy is doing ok. For them it is not.

    The problem is NOT the income gap. The problem is some people not having enough in spite of putting in an honest weeks work.

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  156. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    Kea – you make it sound like we are in 1920′s England.

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  157. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    Ryan, yes. We need to lift the standard for everybody and the only way I can see that happening is to create more wealth. It is no use telling folk on the lowest incomes that the economy is doing ok. For them it is not.

    The problem is NOT the income gap. The problem is some people not having enough in spite of putting in an honest weeks work.

    Interestingly, empirical evidence agrees with you. I did some postgrad political philosophy on wealth distribution. In different countries around the world, experiments were carried out where people were placed in a situation where they could choose how their pay for a task would be distributed, without knowing what the task would be or how good they would be at it or how much they would enjoy or hate it.

    They could have chosen everyone getting paid the same no matter what, everyone getting paid for performance, etc., etc.,

    Overwhelmingly, they chose a system in which people were paid based on performance and hard work, as long as a certain minimum was assured. They didn’t care how much the highest-paid people were getting, as long as if they turned out to be on the bottom of the heap (because of not being able to do the task, for example) they were assured of some kind of minimum income.

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  158. Harriet (4,616 comments) says:

    Ryan of course pay is performanced based.

    The work place should only ever be for the productive as all workplaces are in the market place. [except for basic areas of justice, police, military - even all non-vital parts of these should be contracted out.]

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  159. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Kea – you make it sound like we are in 1920′s England.

    dime, I agree things are not that bad yet. But I invite you to consider where they are heading. My idea is to start addressing the issue now, as the best solutions will take time to work. If we do not do that, then government will go for the quick solution, which is rob the rich to pay the poor.

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  160. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    Ryan of course pay is performanced based.

    The work place should only ever be for the productive as all workplaces are in the market place. [except for basic areas of justice, police, military - even all non-vital parts of these should be contracted out.]

    Right, it’s “of course pay is performance based” to you. But to someone else, it might be “of course pay is effort based”. Or “of course pay is based on how unpleasant a job is”. Etc. That’s why when there are these kinds of high-level discussions, it’s worth making things really explicit.

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  161. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Performance based my arse. Many top people get bonuses and incredible renumeration while they drive companies into ruin.

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  162. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    “dime, I agree things are not that bad yet. But I invite you to consider where they are heading.”

    agree, the more “entitlements” introduced, the worse off we will become.

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  163. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    dime, that is my point.

    The more people we have at the bottom, the more political support there will be for entitlements. Your idea of barking “you losers get what your worth” is not a vote winner. Trust me ;)

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  164. Than (440 comments) says:

    The problem is NOT the income gap. The problem is some people not having enough in spite of putting in an honest weeks work.

    Two problems with this statement.

    Firstly, the value of “having enough” is not a constant. It varies with life circumstances. Somebody without children and able to share accommodation (flatting or boarding) can get by on significantly less than the current minimum wage. And a single parent with five kids living in Auckland couldn’t get by on $25/hour. The “living wage” campaigners have just arbitrarily picked one set of life circumstances and applied it to everybody. That’s ridiculous. The person without children and flatting suddenly gets a huge chunk of extra disposable income, while the single parent of 5 in Auckland still doesn’t have enough.

    Secondly, whether or not people have enough, the harsh economics apply regardless. If you force supermarkets to pay every checkout operator and shelf-stocker $18.60 an hour they become non-profitable, and will either go out of business or raise their prices. Since I for one like being able to buy food I hope they do the latter, but “living wage” campaigners just casually say any business that can’t pay a living wage should go under.

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  165. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    A good look at the ‘living wage’: Kim Campbell: The ‘living wage’ and what it really means

    He suggests that the original intent of the ‘living wage’ has been redefined and hijacked as a higher minimum wage.

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  166. dime (9,675 comments) says:

    Kea – id word it differently than that!

    I mean the more entitlements that are handed out now actually make people worse off.

    the left knows this, they just dont care.

    they need a collapse to get their system in

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  167. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    dime, yes we agree on all that. What I am suggesting is that if people have enough they may be less likely to commit economic suicide out of desperation. People at the bottom live week to week to survive. Long term is a luxury.

    I reckon there must be a way to improve the lot of the working poor, without robbing dime.

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  168. Ryan Sproull (7,060 comments) says:

    I reckon there must be a way to improve the lot of the working poor, without robbing dime.

    Your options are:

    1. Make more wealth for the working poor.
    2. Make more wealth for everyone, including the working poor.
    3. Structure property so that distributing existing wealth to the working poor is considered robbing Dime, and do that.
    4. Structure property so that distributing existing wealth to the working poor is not considered robbing Dime, and do that.

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  169. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    5. All of the above.

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  170. big bruv (13,571 comments) says:

    I simply do not give a shit about middle aged low paid workers.

    If they were dumb enough to waste their tax payer funded education, have done nothing to better themselves in the years since they left school or have never offered a little bit more to their employer so they are first in line when promotions are on offer then tough bloody luck.

    They are cleaning toilets for a bloody good reason and that is because the market place does not value them highly enough to do anything else. $13.50 is what they are worth, not a penny more.

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  171. Than (440 comments) says:

    @vto – you didn’t actually answer Pete’s question.

    Pete, the current system is fundamentally a workable one, however the settings around it need adjusting to get the spread of the nations wealth more even and just.

    Example – today a CEO may earn up to 50x their average worker, whereas in the past it was maybe 5x. This is out of whack. Further example – the minimum wage is not enough to live on. This is out of whack.

    I don’t disagree the current system is imperfect. CEO salaries are completely out of whack, a blatant example of market failure. But you haven’t answered the question – what solution would you suggest?

    Legislating for a “living wage” does nothing to CEOs. It just shakes up the economy, benefiting low-earning workers in the short term, hurting middle-earning workers in the medium term, and achieving nothing in the long term.

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  172. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Than – and it hurts the marginally employable in the short, medium and long term.

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