Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Tear down this tax, Dr Cullen!

I'm pleased to be able to correct an earlier negative of assessment of ANZ economist Cameron Bagrie by noting that he's come off the fence to make the obvious point that while the NZ government can do nothing at all about the international supply and demand problems pushing up the international price of oil, they can do something about the local price of petrol which is made up in large part by a large payment to government.  Says Bagrie:

ANZ Bank chief economist Cameron Bagrie says the Government should cut petrol taxes by 10 or 20 cents a litre to reduce the squeeze on incomes and help reduce inflation.

Bravo, sir.  I agree with you.


  1. Yes he is right. Cullen is so far out of touch with reality he has fortgotten what goes on in the real world. Oh I forgot he has never really been there, from school to University to Politics. He has never had a real job. The sooner we get rid of Clark, Cullen and the rest of the Socialist losers who are destroying this country the better. Roll on November

  2. $2.069 for 91 this afternoon. Bets, anybody?

  3. Sus

    I'll bet that it's a bubble and it'll drop precipitously.

    Already insiders are demanding govts set a minimum price of US$50 per barrel or more. Intervention to keep it above this level is actively being lobbied. The motivation is to stop the erstwhile from losing their shirts when the inevitable corrections occur. They are lobbying on the basis that anything less than $50 is bad for the climate/environment etc. You've got to laugh.


  4. Cut petrol taxes? No thank you: cut my income tax first, I don't buy much petrol.


  5. Fist is right.

    The petrol tax is a tax on consumption, everybody pays it, it really is very flat indeed.

    But income tax: better to make every dollar earned over $100,000 tax free than to remove a cent from petrol tax or GST. Hell: it;s better economics to put petrol tax or GST up so that tax-free threshold at the top of the income tax regime can come down

    (or even better, rather than a margin 0% rate, set it up so if you earn over $100,000, the effective tax rate is 0% or all income! That's got to be worth lots on the petrol tax to pay for it!)

  6. Tear down this tax

    It is a good phrase and it is very appropriate to apply it in this case for Dr. Cullen.

    I thought that Ronald Reagan said the same phrase, when he challenged President Gorbachev to tear down this wall , meaning the Berlin wall. Lets hope that a new Government, perhaps John Key, will do exactly what Reagan said (tax wall).

  7. Correct me if I'm wrong here, but aren't petrol taxes per unit rather than percentage? So the amount of tax per liter doesn't change with the price of petrol? In that case, taxes are a rapidly falling portion of the price of petrol. And aren't petrol taxes dedicated to roading improvements? If we get rid of the petrol tax, do we abandon road works or do we increase income taxes to fund road projects?

    Of all the taxes, the petrol tax is the one I hate least. It comes closest to a user-pays kind of arrangement.

  8. Fist is your garden variety socialist. He does not object to theft so long as other people are doing the paying. He does not like it so much when he is the victim.

    Think about what he is saying. Products he does not have much use for should be mercilessly taxed but he should not be taxed much at all. This is an example of the auction of stolen goods ideology at work. The idea is "steal from them but not from me", and, "Give me more of what was took from them."

    In the case of petrol and diesel, his short sighted pragmatism is revealed to be shallow indeed, as the cost of fuel affects the cost of may other products as well as the amount of tax applied on each and every one. Cost goes up and so does the tax applied against them. In the end the average Joe gets stiffed as he has to pay and pay and keep paying.


    Tax is applied as a percentage. It is not falling. Petrol and diesel taxes have been placed in the general slush fund in the past. Much did not go on road improvements at all. More recently this has been altered some.

    Roads should be privatised and the owners can determine how best to finance them.


    Funny how so many of you argue about what form taxes should take (rather like Fist in that you want others to pay big tax while you continue to collect benefits).

    What you should be considering in the first instance is the nature of tax and coercion. Why is it that you want to apply coercive taxes on other people at all? You should be thinking really hard about whether it would be better to get rid of tax altogether as taxes are not fair or without harm.


  9. /wipes away the flecks of foam.

    LGM, I'm happy to pay petrol tax/road user charges as part of my purchase of petrol and bus tickets, as that pays for the roads. I "believe" in user pays. Sure, you may have an opinion on better ways to charge users for road, but I assume at least we can agree on user pays?

    Hence my comment to cut INCOME tax (pref to nil) and leave petrol taxes alone.
    I am, however, quite happy to advocate getting rid of GST altogether. The gummint just doesn’t NEED all that money.

  10. You should be thinking really hard about whether it would be better to get rid of tax altogether as taxes are not fair or without harm.

    So who the fuck pays for the army?

    Police, yeah that can be privatised (although I note the Libs don't go that far), but there is some public good with the army.

    And the answer, as Fist said, and as anyone who hasn't gone to a state-controlled school would know is:

    * a poll tax (including on children) is best
    * a flat GST or petrol tax is next best
    * any kind of income tax, especially an uncapped tax with a tax-free threshold, is worst.

  11. Fist

    You should learn to swallow your spit or whatever else it is that is on your face. Maybe you shouldn't engage in your gobbling activities at all. That way your face wouldn't get so sticky and messy.


    No, we don't agree on "user pays." Far preferable is "owner decides."

    I agree that income tax should be nil. So should all the other taxes.


  12. So who owns the right to issue passports?

  13. Bagrie argued that this is a temporary measure - temporary until what? Until we need a bigger tax cut on petrol, temporary until the price of oil returns to $22 a barrel?

    The price of oil is only headed in one direction - I've been saying this for years. Giving people a 10 cent cut per litre will only prolong the agony for stupid muppets who havn't got the sense to organise some other form of transport.

    By next month any tax relief on petrol will be swallowed up by the next rise in the price per barrel. Then what?

    Wake up!

  14. oh.. while we are at it can the Government please give me a subsidy to make up for the 10% loss in value of my property due to current economic conditions.

    For gods sake ...

  15. Steve

    If a man says the price of petrol is going up for long enough, eventually he'll be correct. Of course, if he says the opposite he'll eventually be correct as well. It's merely a matter of timing.

    As far as rising prices for oil are concerned, the statement that oil prices are increasing has only been correct over the very recent past. Previously the price had been declining in real terms for an extended period- decades.

    I understand the expectation is the price is to fall drastically when the bubble (which is what this rise is at core) bursts. Watch your investments carefully. Oil isn't a good place to play unless you are extremely well informed.

    As far as tax on oil products is concerned, it should be eliminated. It should be zero. In addition, govt interference in the oil business should cease. The exploration and winning of crude oil, it's refinment and distribution and retailing should be left to those who want to engage in those activities. There is no need for the expensive hinderances of govt overhead and interference. Same goes for the housing market.

    Leave the people alone. Let others deal with what is theirs without hinderance or theft. Stick to that and you won't need your hand-outs or subsidy.


  16. LGM, the price of cheese is pretty high I hear as well, can the government please take the tax of that too. Oh, and while we are at it, I fancy a Triumph Bonneville, I'd appreciate the GST being removed from that also...

    Plasma tvs are another candidate, the public need to be buying more of that shit to keep the economy ticking along. Then, we be able to build more much needed roads.

  17. Steve

    What part of no tax don't you understand?


  18. Good idea LGM - abolish all taxes.

    Geez mate, your a genius. Why didn't I think of that.

  19. Steve

    Because you're stupid.


  20. LGM, so Steve is stupid and you're not?

  21. Tipper

    This is a Libertarianz web site. The host is a key figure in the Libertarianz. Did you know that? Do you understand what Libertarianz is and any of the philosophy it is based on?

    Guess not.

    OK then. Read this part very, very carefully. Try very hard to understand. Try to think.

    The Libz have policy to eliminate all taxation. There are several reason for this policy. At core objections to taxation include that it is compulsory, coercive and fraudulent. It is theft. It is the stealing of other people's time and property. It negates individual freedom.

    Steve tried to be sarcastic about elimination of tax. What he demonstrated was his own ignorance and base stupidity. What I did was explicily state that he is stupid. He is that and likely a lot worse besides.

    If you and your like minded chum Steve are going to post here you should start asking sensible questions and doing some basic readings in the subject PRIOR to passing ignorant, ill-informed opinion/comment. If not, then stupid indeed will you be; as stupid as he.

    What you may like to consider is what the titanic impost of taxation (of all types) and regulation actually costs an individual. Recently I suggested to a colleague that he should sit down and factor it all out and see how much of his life's productive labours were expropriated. He soon discovered that it amounted to over half. When he realised that his choices in life were dominated and restricted by coercive fiat, as well as how much of his potential ability to achieve goals/ values was frustrated, he was devastated. The morality and practicality of no tax was not lost on him.

    It is a good idea for you (and Steve) to undertake the same exercise. In the meantime how about you do some background reading on Libertarianz, their policy and the supporting philosophy?



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