3 News reports:
It says the Government should first talk with companies like Facebook, but if that doesn’t work it is important to have a backup, something Labour is describing as a credible threat.
Facebook is the world’s largest social network by far, but pays little tax here in New Zealand.
“The Government should always have in its back pocket the ability to ban websites,” says Labour revenue spokesman David Clark.
No they shouldn’t. At all.
But Finance Minister Bill English says “frankly, that sounds nuts”.
“Fine print, he’s going to close down Facebook,” says Prime Minister John Key. “That’ll be interesting.”
Not just Facebook. Labour says Google, Apple and Amazon also don’t pay enough tax, so I presume they are included in the list of sites they might try and ban. Perhaps EBay also?
Why stop there. Fairfax and APN pay no tax, or very little tax, in New Zealand. Maybe Labour will also try and ban the NZ Herald and Stuff websites.
“Paedophile websites are banned the world around,” says Mr Clark.
Oh my God. He is comparing Facebook to paedophile websites. How can anyone think Labour is even close to ready for power, when they come out with this crap.
And as it happens paedophile websites are not banned in NZ. It is illegal to download or upload paedophile images, and browsing such a site may be a criminal offence, but the Government has no power to ban any website.
Putting aside the sheer lunacy of advocating the Government should try and ban Facebook if they don’t pay more tax, isn’t there something deeply malevolent about an aspiring Government making such threats. If you think a company should pay more tax, then you change the law to close down loopholes. But to declare as an MP that you have unilaterally decided Company X should pay more tax, and that you will threaten to ban them from New Zealand unless they voluntarily agree to pay more tax is what you expect from some tin pot third world dictatorship, not a so called serious political party.