Tax cuts for all!!! (except you, you, and you)

With the National Party this week announcing a new policy of tax cuts to spice up the election campagin. MyThinks went along to the launch and afterwards we spoke to the party’s finance spokesperson Paul “Golden Touch” Goldsmith.

MT: Thanks for speaking to us Mr Goldsmith.

PG: No. Thank you.

MT: So you’ve announced your tax policy today.

PG: Yes. That is what we have done. Announced our tax policy.

MT: And how do you think this is going to help National during the upcoming campaign?

PG: Well… we are seen as the party of sound financial managers of the economy. These tax cuts are a way for us to give back to those people who have suffered during the crisis the Labour Party have created.

MT: Are you saying the Labour Party caused Covid-19?

PG: Pardon? What…?

MT: This economic crisis, the plunge in GDP, job losses and so on… that’s all a result of the country having to deal with the effects of lockdowns as a result of the potiential of Covid-19 to overwhelm our health system.

PG: um… yes…

MT: So are you saying our current economic crisis is caused by a pandemic Labour created?

PG: No. No. I’m not saying that.

MT: What are you saying?

PG: I’m saying that we need tax cuts to boost the economy.

MT: How do tax cuts boost the economy?

PG: How… what…? How do… Ha! Tax cuts.

MT: It’s a pretty simple question. How will cutting people’s tax help improve the economy?

PG: Well.. it’s obvious, isn’t it?

MT: Yes. Obvious to you. But let’s pretend that I’m an alien from another planet that doesn’t have money. Explain to me how tax cuts work.

PG: Well… when National wins the election…

MT: If…

PG: …what?

MT: If National win the election. You’re on about 30% or something aren’t you. Where is the other 20% going to come from?

PG: Can I talk about the last thing I was talking about please? You’re asking too many difficult questions that I don’t want to answer.

MT: Ok. Go ahead. Sorry.

PG: Let’s say National are leading the next government. We will pass a law that will cut the taxes of income earners. Those income earners will then take the money they are not giving to the government and go out into the economy and spend it with mum and dad shop owners, tourism operators, and bars and clubs.

MT: And you’re absolutley sure of that.

PG: Sure of what?

MT: That people will spend their tax cuts?

PG: Oh… absolutley they will. Everybody always spends their tax cuts.

MT: Did you spend your last tax cut?

PG: What?

MT: When National were last in office and dished out an income tax cut, did you spend it with the mum and dad business owners?

PG: I… um.. the…

MT: So that’s a no then?

PG: No. That’s not a no.

MT: Well… is it a yes.

PG: Um… no.. it’s not a yes.

MT: So did you spend your tax cut, or did you invest it in something… say like becoming the part owner in a bach or throwing into your kiwisaver?

PG: You know… that’s actually a question I can’t answer at this time. You’ll have to ask my accountant.

MT: So… do you think most New Zealanders have accountants that can help them avoid paying tax?

PG: I don’t avoid paying tax. I take measures to legally minimise my tax obligations.

MT: Do you think most income earners are in a position to legally minimise their tax obligations?

PG: Um… can we talk about something else. This line of questioning is making me look bad.

MT: Indeed. So… how will the National Party bridge the gap between the lower tax take and the spending promises you’ve made.

PG: What do you mean?

MT: Well… National have pledged to spend billions of dollars on roads and other infrastructure, you’ve also promised to pay back debt quicker than the Labour Party. Lowering taxes is going to lead to lower government revenue. How are you going to pay for it?

PG: Again… what do you mean? I don’t follow you in the slightest.

MT: OK… how are you going to pay for all your spending promises?

PG: With money, silly.

MT: Where is the money coming from?

PG: Again… The government, silly.

MT: How is the government going to raise that money?

PG: Oh my lord, you are a numpty. We are going to raise the money in the usual way.

MT: What is the usual way?

PG: We are going to raise the money by paying back debt and lowering taxes.

MT: You can’t raise money by reducing the amount of money you have.

PG: What do you mean?

MT: I mean you can’t start off with an amount of money, reduce that amount of money by, say, paying off debt or lowering taxes, and then end up with more money.

PG: Why not? I don’t understand.

MT: Let’s say you are the government and I am a tax payer. Let’s say I give you ten dollars.

PG: Ok.

MT: And let’s say you already owe three dollars to Brian, my sound guy.

PG: Yes…

MT: So I only give you seven dollars, because of, you know the debt. And I give the other three straight to Brian.

PG: Yes…

BRIAN THE SOUND GUY: Thanks very much.

PG: So you’ve paid off your debt to Brian the sound guy.

PG: Yes.

MT: And then, actually, you the government decide to give me one of those dollars back as a tax cut…

PG: Yes…

MT: …so now how may dollars do you have left?

PG: Ten.

MT: No. I have one, Brian has three and you only have six dollars.

PG: What? That can’t be right.

MT: It is right. You only have six dollars. Count them.

PG: Um… one, two, three, four, five… and… six… Oh no.

MT: Oh yes… so where are you going to get the extra money from to pay for your roads and infrastructure projects and other shovel-ready items that definitely aren’t the same as Shane Jones’ massive slush fund from the last parliament.

PG: But I can’t… I’ve only got six dollars.

MT: Indeed.

PG: So how are we going to pay for everything?

MT: Yes… indeed again.

PG: This isn’t good.

MT: You’re right. It makes you look like you have no idea what you’re doing.

PG: But we must know what we are doing. We are sound fiscal managers!

MT: Who can’t do simple addition.

PG: Yes… but… that doesn’t count. It was a trick.

MT: Paul Goldsmith. Thanks for your time.

PG: Sound fiscal managers!

MT and Brian the Sound Guy leave the room.

PG: ….the natural party of government… sound fiscal managers… oh… and what am I going to spend this six dollars on?

MT (sticking head back through the door): Another road!

MT and Brian can be heard laughing as they walk away.

Letter to the Editor

Dear Sir,

As we head into the run up to the upcoming election I feel it is my duty to draw your attention to the lack of fun we are currently forced to ensure by the Adern regime.

In their efforts to keep the nation’s essential workers, health compromised people, grandparents safe from Covid-19, they have completely taken the sense of fun our society used to have when Bill English was our master (The English years were well known for their flamboyance and general sense of mischief. That certainly isn’t the situation now).

Today I was at the mall and imagine my outrage to find this recreational vehicle wrapped in some kind of bizarre opaque cling-film. A small child ran towards it and subsequently burst into tears when she realised her pushchair was the only only way out of her plastic nightmare. I admit I had a tear in my eye as she was bundled off by her mildly aggrieved parents.

Then, sir, my rage grew to apoplectic levels when I found this fenced off helicopter. This time no children were sobbing at the ramparts but it was early on in the day. I’m certain if I was to return later in the day I would find hundreds of young children tearfully screaming for a place to be themselves.

Now I have to wear a mask when I’m going on the bus. When am I, a well-off middle aged white man, going to catch a break?

Why can’t I just he allowed to do what I want, when I want?

And the kids.

Yours sincerely,

D. Seymour

How to be a journalist

Journalism is a hard job. For many decades now journalists in New Zealand and around the world we journalists have been struggling to ask the hard questions.

But how hard can asking the hard questions? As it turns out, not that hard! If you are looking to become a journalist, pick up a bit of paper, grab your pen, because here are four simple tips to help you follow your dream.

  • Get a lanyard – lanyards are important. If you want to get anywhere in journalism, grap yourself a lanyard. You can get them from any self-respecting $2 shop. Just put your driver’s licence inside and bob’s your uncle! You can get in anywhere – even backstage at ‘Splore (they’re pretty loose there).
  • Ask questions – your job as a journalist is to ask questions. Ask everybody questions. If someone asks you the time, ask why they don’t have a watch. If grandma asks for the salt, you ask how long she’s been addicted to sodium chloride. You don’t need to hear the answers, just make sure everyone in the room hears your question.
  • Reckons are important – tell people what you think. All the time. Maybe set up a YouTube channel where you can talk for a bit of time, maybe a minute or so, on complex topics you pretend to know a lot about (such as epidemiology, quantum physics, or the Prime Minister’s fashion sense). People must know what you think, even if they don’t need to know what you think.
  • Learn to be apopleptic – if the person you’re asking questions of doesn’t do what you want them to (apologise, resign, self immolate etc), you need to be prepared to explode in a fury of outrage. Shout down the camera; tweet in ALL CAPS; construct a strongly worded opinion piece for a major media outlet’s comments section. All these things will help show your passion for your job.

Hopefully this helps you get on your way to being a politicial editor of a major television news network, or the breakfast host on an Auckland-based talk radio network.

Protest against mask wearing held in Auckland

A group of protesters gathered in Aotea Square in Auckland yesterday to march against what they say is a concerted effort to trample on their individual freedoms.

The protest was called over social media as a way to show defiance towards the latest government-imposed lockdown following the second outbreak of Covid-19.

The march began at the bottom of Queen Street and moved up towards Aotea Square with protesters chanting and shouting the government wasn’t going to tell them what to do. Social distancing wasn’t being practiced and no masks were worn. Some of the more brazen protesters deviated from the main road and spent some time licking door handles and traffic crossing buttons.

There was a definite festival atmosphere at the protest. A small number of tent-based retailers had set themselves up on the outskirts of the protest. There were tents selling dream catchers, phone tower axes and the latest medicinal bleach.

Joined at Aotea Square by the Ban 1080 group, the Jenny McCarthy Appreciation Society, the Blast the Mast Against 5G and independent MP Jamie-Lee Ross. Ross, who famously teamed up with a local conspiracy theorist after realising they had more Facebook followers than him, spoke with passion and zeal to the crowd.

“The government is trying to tell us what to do,” he said to the cheering crowd, “and we will not be told what to do. We will not wear masks. We will not be socially distant. We will not wear seatbelts in cars. We will not wear helmets on motorbikes.

“If we want to grid with our dance partners in the local discoteque, we should be able to. If we want to pash our dance partners in a local discoteque, we should be able to! We will not be told what we can do with our own bodies!!”

When asked who he had been pashing and grinding at the Botany RSA, he said it was none of our business.

I’m sorry: James Shaw

Statement from James Shaw, Associate Finance Minister and Green Party Co-Leader.

Hello everyone.

I’m sorry. I’m really, really sorry. I mean… I just didn’t think… I was just thinking that I would…. um… it was just that….

I’m sorry.

Look… Let me explain. When someone came to me and said they had a “shovel-ready project” at a “green school” in Taranaki I though to myself, you know… this could make the Green Party look really amazing. Winston’s been funding all sorts of racing-based projects and other things to get Shane Jones elected in Northland…. the Greens should get some of that announcement mana.

Unfortunately for me, and perhaps my party’s chances in the upcoming election, I didn’t read the fine print.

It turns out the Green School is a private school. I had no idea. How was I meant to know? It had the word green in the title! In my time as Green Party Co-Leader, every green school I’ve ever been to has been filled to the brim with beautiful long-haired teachers wandering the grounds in sandals (or bare feet) extolling the virtues of worm farms, bicycle power and hemp wine.

Never in my wildest dreams did I think this was a multi-million dollar enterprise with suits wandering around a campus funded by fee-paying students whose parents cough up around twenty five grand a year.

However… good news everyone! Thanks to a concerted social media campaign by party members and possible middle-class people uncomfortable that this mistake makes the party as ruthless and underhanded as any action ever undertaken by National, I am looking to backtrack.

That’s correct. I am planning a complete flip-flop. I have seen how effectively this has worked in the United Kingdom for Boris Johnson. He seems to be able to flip-flop every second day without too much blowback from the media. And since I am leading a political party just like Mr Johnson, I’m expecting I won’t face any wrath from any local New Zealand media.

I think I’ve dealt with this pretty effectively.

Thank you for listening.

Jimmy xx