Wednesday, 24 August 2016

A little sense from Greens, a lot of nonsense from Little


I’m a little late in giving full credit here, and I doubt we’d agree on how it should or might be done, but for a politician Greens’s co-leaderene Metiria Turei shows more sense on this than many others in saying:


That would take them back to around 2009 levels. Hardly killing. And down to just five times median incomes instead of ten. Still not completely in the “affordable” bracket, but a good start.

"Auckland house prices should be deliberately reduced by up to 50 percent over a period of time to make the market affordable again, Greens co-leader Metiria Turei says. The average house price in Auckland has risen to nearly $1 million, or 10 times the median household income. Ms Turei said the only way to reverse that was to slowly bring prices back down to three or four times the median household income….

Mind you, like all the other politicians, she has no solution to do that.

She told Morning Report the Green Party was considering what timeframe would work without crashing the market and hurting people who already owned homes. "The only way to prevent a bust, and to protect families in the short and long term is to lay out a comprehensive plan, which means using every comprehensive tool that we've got so that we can slowly bring down house prices so that they're reasonable."

How? With a comprehensive plan using every comprehensive tool. Wow.

Sounds like a non-plan.

The Auckland Council's chief economist had suggested bringing prices down to five times the median household income by 2030, she said.

Yes, he did. Mind you, he had a few solutions too.

Labour leader Andrew Little said Ms Turei's declaration that Auckland house prices should be deliberately reduced was irresponsible.

It’s irresponsible to say houses should be affordable? What a prick.

There was no way a Labour-led government would consider the idea, he said.

There’s no way Labour would consider the idea of making housing affordable? What a dick.

"We have a very clear plan. It's not about crashing house prices. It's about stabilising prices.

So what the hell does that mean. Dick.

"We don't want to cause undue economic harm to those who - in good faith - have bought homes, entered into mortgages. That's not a responsible approach." Labour and the Greens recently struck a co-operation agreement, including a no-surprises policy.

It’s probably no surprise to the Greens that Little is a dick. So that’s fine.

Ms Turei said a more comprehensive capital gains tax, restricting property purchases to permanent residents and citizens, and removing tax exemptions were also needed to cool the property market.

Mind you, it’s no surprise either that the Greens’s way to fix the intersection of three most regulated parts of the country with more regulation. And more tax.

Ms Turei said the government was not admitting there was a problem with housing prices, let alone putting in place a plan to deal with it to protect families.

And that much is true.

Mr Little said a Labour-led government would build affordable housing, as outlined in recent policy announcements.

And that much is untrue, because their plan involves being able to build each stage by making profits from each earlier stage – but with costs as they are those profits are as illlusory as their plan. In short, their affordable housing plan is literally unaffordable. Mind you, if they were to make it work, if they were to achieve the impossible, it would do more than just “stabilise” prices now. It would also help build the slums of tomorrow.

What’s wrong with just taking off the vice grips and letting folk build how and where they want. That’s not just one plan, that’s a hundred-thousand plans.

And what’s wrong with a liltle churn? It makes better houses as well as it makes good butter.



  1. Little does not suggest that houses should not become affordable, he makes the observation that it is impossible to forcibly crash the prices in a normal democracy. There is only one good way forward and that is the Peter Cresswell idea of opening the urban boundary. But I think he [PC] forgets that as he becomes uneasy about the redneck/conservative approach to absolute freedom for immigrants to colonise us. . It took a lot of planning to get where you are up there in Auckland, and it will take time and unplanning to get out of it.
    That is not an excuse for the spiritless flim flam Government to do nothing. That's a big trouble they have no good opposition ideas, except Cresswell's and they are not listening.

  2. Auckland house prices anit a closed circuit. Auckland is an Asian city now.

    Unaffordable in terms of local salary but not in international terms. Overseas capital has flowed into Auckland housing. The spike in prices since 2011 isnt due to planning limiting supply, as this has been in place for a long time, its in a major part international capital. Local investors see this as well and jump on.

    The Greens etc see Auckland housing in closed local terms and ignore what is happening overseas.

    Vancouver housing is Auckland on steroids and may have hit the wall recently. If the international capital flow leaves Auckland housing then the Greens will get what they want planning changes or not.


1. Commenters are welcome and invited.
2. All comments are moderated. Off-topic grandstanding, spam, and gibberish will be ignored. Tu quoque will be moderated.
3. Read the post before you comment. Challenge facts, but don't simply ignore them.
4. Use a name. If it's important enough to say, it's important enough to put a name to.
5. Above all: Act with honour. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.