Sunday, November 13, 2011

Response To A Guaranteed Minimum Income

TheDUDE likes this - a response to Treasury's analysis of Guaranteed Minimum Income (


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Economic Thinking

'If you are highly educated and older you likely get paid more, and if pay is a proxy for productivity, then you are by definition more productive.' Economic thinking. Of course by that thinking, finance is also the most productive industry sector, because they pay themselves the most (and volunteers are entirely unproductive).


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Employee Compensation Share of GDP

This chart indicates what could well be something of a concern for those in New Zealand. Click on the chart to see it larger.

Clearly employee compensation is much less in New Zealand than in the US and UK, and has been that way since the sharp decline of the 80's. Couple that with much smaller GDP per capita and we get a rather poor situation for little old New Zealand.


Monday, May 9, 2011

Drop Tax On Alcohol To Boost NZ Tourism

Reckon it would work?


Friday, March 18, 2011

Don't Cycle Fast In The City

Don't cycle so fast a car door opening would cause you serious injury, especially wherever there is only a narrow gap between parked cars and moving traffic, which is pretty much anywhere in the central city and surrounding suburbs. It just isn't worth it.

In fact, wherever possible, keep away from roads where there's little space for cyclists, and avoid times where there's a great deal of traffic.

If isn't safe, and you can't do it safely, don't do it.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Plugging The Gap (NZ Institute) || Food & Tourism...?

"The difficulty for firms trying to build successful international businesses is that the domestic market here is very small so that businesses are small when they begin to export and the markets they serve are distant. That means their capability and resource base is relatively low when they internationalise and the cost to establish in offshore markets is relatively high. Those difficulties often cause delays that consume capital and erode competitive position."

"The business must have a product or service that is appealing enough to win customers and those customers must be willing to buy from an emerging business that is headquartered a long way away. It must be able to deliver the product or service at a competitive price and have costs that are low enough to provide an attractive margin."

"The current ecosystem is not delivering sufficient talent and capital to the internationalising businesses so the businesses are not as successful as they could be. Some are being sold overseas when the value created could otherwise be held in New Zealand."

Rick Boven (2010), Plugging The Gap – An Internationalisation Strategy, New Zealand Institute.

There has to be a reason why a product is produced in New Zealand, with agriculture it's obvious: the conditions are just right and arable land is relatively plentiful. Produce a product that can be produced more easily elsewhere, and the market is elsewhere, then production will move. In short, unless production in New Zealand delivers some form of advantage, production will move.

'Clean & Green' ('Pure') are probably our greatest brand assets. These gel well with food production and sustainable tourism. There is no particular limit to the diversity of food product or variety of tourist experience that we can produce. We would do well to play on this. If we work to New Zealand's strengths we will most likely succeed in overseas markets and still produce here.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Dollars Are Only One Measure Of Productivity (NZ)

It's not gross domestic product per worker, it's the monetary value of product per worker, which is quite a different thing from product per worker. On product per worker I have no doubt New Zealand would be very much the same as Australia.

By measuring everything in dollars we fall down on the things that are actually important to us, like making a meaningful contribution and finding fulfilment in what we do.

New Zealand's natural products have not done well (in dollars) because other countries have subsidised a glut on the market. Now the market has grown (in world population and affluence) and even those extensive subsidies are not enough to encourage supply great enough to keep prices down.


Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Authoritarian Attitude Is Dying, And Good Riddance

"Key [New Zealand Prime Minister] would improve the odds if he were to add authority to likeability, put his stamp on the government as well as be its face. Authority would require that when he says something it is the government speaking, not John Key musing. It would require that when a minister does something, it is the action of an unmistakably John Key minister, not of someone who happens to be in the ministry."
An Investment Opportunity For Trader Key, Colin James, Dominion Post, 17 Jan 2011

This is rubbish. It is his qualities of approachability and good nature that contribute the greatest part to his likeability and his popularity (along with his clear capability). His authority is without question - he is the Prime Minister.

The idea that a position of authority must entail an authoritarian attitude is a nonsense. In the sense that he is collaborative, constructive and willing-to-talk he embodies the qualities that are vital to anyone being popular in the new politics. The old authoritarian 'strong leader' is largely dead in modern Western politics (or so most of us hope), just as it is dying in modern Western corporations (though not as quickly as many of us would wish).


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Israel/US Use Virus To Sabotage Iranian Nuclear Facilities

Relevant Article: Israeli Test on Worm Called Crucial in Iran Nuclear Delay, NY Times

Right or wrong, corporate multinationals actively kowtow to the interests of America. It must be pretty hard for Siemens to be trusted again as a software provider.

Where's the legality of this? It isn't debated. Because of cause the actions are never admitted. It's obviously illegal, domestically. But internationally, the laws are weak, and what's been ruled right, has often been might.

Sometimes some harm has to be done to prevent a greater harm. I guess this is the essense of the best argument used. But is this the case here? Is American-Israeli sabotage of Iranian nuclear facilities the lesser harm against Iran's rhetoric about Israel? Is murder of scientists?