The People’s Budget: 7.30pm Tonight


Can Neoliberalism build a wellbeing budget? Has the Government been transformational?

Join Bryan Bruce and panelists
Economist Rod Oram
Political Commentator Sue Bradford
Greenpeace Leader Russel Norman
Professor Jane Kelsey
Auckland Councillor Efeso Collins
Just Speak Board member Julia Whaipooti

With Guest Commentators:
Kerri Nuku Co-President of Nurses Union
Economist Ganesh Nana
Professor Lisa Marriott from Victoria University
Unionist Annie Newman from Living Wage
Ricardo Mendez from Auckland Action Against Poverty
Professor Wayne Hope from AUT Communications School
Political commentator Chris Trotter


  1. Omg!Omg!Omg!
    Sorry. Perhaps off-topic but…. While I loath the bnz with a demonic, almost alien hatred. A hatred so incandescent with extreme intensity ( and no disrespect to actual aliens I might add.) that I can barely hold down an erection thinking about how the bnz will fail cosmically and to my complete satisfaction…? How about this?

    jonky. Gone, but not far enough it would seem.

    • “The Reserve Bank’s role is to review and approve internal models. The onus is then on bank directors to ensure, and attest, that their bank is compliant with the Reserve Bank’s regulatory requirements,” said deputy Governor Geoff Bascand.

      Actually, I’m pretty sure that it’s the RBNZ’s role to ensure that a private bank is keeping up with the regulations.

      “ANZ’s directors have attested to compliance despite the approved model not being used since 2014. The fact that this issue was not identified for so long highlights a persistent weakness with ANZ’s assurance process.”

      That shows that the RBNZ wasn’t doing its job. Sure, it also shows that the directors weren’t doing their job either but the big one is the RBNZ failing at their job.

      “And again, there’s no higher priority for a bank than to comply with the terms of its licence.”

      I’m pretty sure that you’ll find that the shareholders think that their bludging is more important.

  2. Like it like the devil. The twins in charge of the good talk and the bad walk read us.

    It’s so simple. All it requires is for Ardern to talk for the People. Savage sacrificed his life, like all the other workers for the original Labour. But now it just needs someone or a party unafraid to speak unapologetically for the people. It is so much easier.

    Only prob, us fat fugs loving ease.

  3. Thanks to everyone giving their time for this, I guess I must still be a leftie because you all spoke the truth.
    The facts are there for us all to see: today a jarring reminder of what we have become when I notice a charity needing 40 000 sets of pyjamas for south Auckland kids for this winter.
    That’s not a typo.
    I despair at the major parties who’s drive seems to be to turn everyone mainstream or deploy identity politics to fragment society and take our freedom to suppress dissent rather than change.

  4. Great to be able to watch this live, thanks Bomber. We – that is the main man and I – agreed with almost all that was said – but how anyone could not only listen to that but partake in it and give the budget a 7 is beyond me.

    The people who live in a house that has 24 people living in it should go to the media, we are a bloody wealthy country and there is no need for people to be living like that and there problem will be sorted quickly once it is in the public eye.

    We need way more tax brackets than we have way more levels of taxes and the highest should go back up to 60% or whatever it used to be.

    I too had read the wealth tax figure and thought yes we need this but frankly we also need death duties. Anybody with over $2m or something like that should be paying death duties.

    And we need to start putting a decent amount of money into corporate fraud which is worth billions in unpaid taxes, instead of the tiddly amount we spend which is the same as what we spend on benefit fraud which is worth $30m a year. But then it is so easy to run down the poorest and chase them….

    Efeso Collins will never get into parliament because he speaks truth to power. Labour have always had those 3 south Auckland seats – the poorest in the country – whilst doing squat for the people that live there and having WEAK MPs who go along with Labours bullshit.

    • Not all Sth Auckland MP’s go along with Labour’s bullshit – some appear too busy with other things, like Louisa Wall.

      When her same-sex Marriage Bill was passed, Wall stood blinking saying that same sex people being able to marry each other was the most important thing in her life. I thought, “Great, but what about the barefoot and poor hungry kids in your electorate ?”

      Within days Wall was announcing she would be advocating for a third gender option on NZ passports. I thought, “Great, but what about the poor and homeless kids in your electorate?” I also thought there are number of countries where a third gender on a passport could be asking for trouble, but if that’s a priority for Wall’s electorate as they trip off overseas, so be it.

      Weeks later, Wall made yet another gender-issue announcement and I thought, “Who would have thought that poor Sth Aucklanders had such pressing needs for gender- challenging issues ? ” I think it was the following year, that Wall was photographed looking uncomfortable with a nun, addressing a deprived children issue, and I thought, “About bloody time.”

      It was good seeing Efeso Collins advocating for all the people who he represents, and advocating compassionately.

      This was well worth while viewing last night, thank you.It was also good
      that you raised the our awful suicide and mental health issues, and the speaker who said that the money now being allocated for mental health was treating a symptom of what is wrong in contemporary NZ, spoke a truth.

      Equally important was the suggestion that we need a public television channel where important issues can be aired and addressed and debated – as they once were – and if the Ardern govt is genuinely concerned with the well being of all our people, then we will get one.

  5. Thanks team it was an awesome show that was needed and we need it weekly for sure now, but I would have liked to see someone mention the big funding for saving our rail as it will be our saviour now as trucks are ruining our roads and ecomony as well as kiling many on roads.

    Rail uses far less fuel to move freight and saves our zero carbon emissions target too.

    Even today Air NZ was saying on tonight’s news that they are now moving to switch to electric local plane services using battery powered turbo prom engines apparently.
    They agree now that air transport is in trouble as it amounts to over 2% of the total global carbon emissions now and is considered to high for their activities.

    Electric trains are the future also Guy -. as they will have no emissions, or not even any tyre dust polluting tyres just Steel on steel. A perfect combination finally.

    I remember when Dr Francis Small Chief operating Manager of NZ rail taking a train load of MP’s up the main trunk line and had a stunning press release that said “rail is environmentally friendly; – and has now reached its time,

  6. FFS! The only person that possibly could save the Gweens from annihilation at the next election is Russell Norman! Sign him up! And get rid of those two useless cunts, Marama & the pakeha!

  7. 1.The budget is either transformative or not. You can’t have partial transformation. (same as quantum physics)
    2.Transform the house to a lower quantum level, which releases energy. Small eco friendly, energy efficient, factory built, pre approved consent. Stunning examples on TV.
    3.Iwi are our best hope to start the transformation. Create a model village on tribal land. Integrated design with cool recreation space. Community gardens, Marae, childcare etc-Maori Kiwibuild.
    5. Community needs to be rebuilt from the ground up or the lowest energy state-the atom. Labour and National can’t get enough energy to get to a higher quantum state to fix the obvious problems.
    6. The young people are mobilising-gaining energy with increased heat from global warming.
    Einstein wasn’t called Einstein for nothing.

  8. These talk fests have happened many times before and nothing has changed and nothing will change now. That’s why I share the disillusion and alienation of Castro. A CGT with bite would have been a good start. say 50% for starters, family home exempt. as a consequence we’re doomed to continue as a smug,selfish I’m alright Bruce self satisfied dull backwater forever.

    E.G. We can issue our own credit! Why bother to borrow overseas and pay interest to foreign bankers!? It’s bonkers. And we’ve sold off our assets too assisted by traitor banker Key.

    • Still have to keep talking though Jay11. The dozen or so speakers last evening were of higher calibre than any random dozen plucked out of Parliament, and may have provided some MP’s with their only chance of listening to intelligent educated people addressing crucial issues.

      Maintaining a silence may falsely indicate to our elected representatives that we think they are better than they are – or that we are dumber than we are.

  9. Collecting complaints?

    Thank you very much for the interesting statements and for the profound positions by the member of the panel.

    Fora like this are important as they add detail and context to perceived isolated political fragments.

    Nonetheless, the colours and the shape of the “big picture” are evolving since years and decades, and it does not necessarily require further practical evidence to anticipate the social, economic, environmental, ecological, climatic emergencies that are gaining momentum.

    Collecting further facts is a good thing but it is simply not enough.

    Weeping in front of the wailing wall ?

    Accumulated, AONZ’s diversity in population, communities, institutions and the entrepreneurial landscape are packed with people willing to contribute to a rapid and radical transformational change.

    What can be done to remove or by-pass the bottle-neck in the parliamentary system?

    …..again, thank you very much to the panel members for sharing knowledge.

    Hope to see more of it soon.

  10. Thank you to all involved with this excellent forum!

    I loved Jane Kelsey’s closing statement.

    The traitor R. Douglas sold out Aoteoroa lickety split.
    We can take it back with equal gusto if the will is there.

  11. Thanks team. Great panel, audience and discussion. Jane summed up at the end I think the key to true transformation and wellbeing, socialist kamikaze sacrifice for the good of everyone, for the future generations and the environment, just doing what is right enthusiasticly, fairly and selflessly.

  12. Fabulous effort, panel and commentary. +1000%. Need to have more of these discussions that set an agenda rather than solely relying on what the government and MSM set as dialogue.

    My only concern comment is that, just like the government has straitjacketed itself on fiscal responsibility, the left and centre commentators straitjacket themselves by ignoring increasing demands from lazy or nonsensical immigration and rampant tourism (nearly as many tourists as residents now) that neoliberalism needs to feed itself and keep going.

    Even if you increase the taxes it is difficult to work out how a few million in NZ paying more taxes can support the massive and deliberate demand that can never be stemmed that is being created by more overseas sales of assets and NZ businesses and land, hundreds of thousands each year of new low income people coming into NZ, children and retirees needing support who are coming to NZ on low paid jobs or as family members/new spouses without any incomes (but often can inexplicably live in a million dollar house and therefore would have been exempt from the capital gains taxes) and the five million tourists who if they fall ill need NZ health care, ACC, transport, housing, carbon footprint, etc.

    This might be all well and good, but for the fact that new demand competes for resources against the poorest and locals, in many cases, by controlling food supply, agriculture, finance and loans (loansharks and banks) and the new winner is housing and social needs, aka the Compasses coming to NZ, to help administer the poor because the government seems to lack any interest in giving the money to Housing NZ for example that returns a profit back to NZ (and builds more houses than Kiwibuild).

    Whanau Ora gets money, but it seems to be the ‘trickle down’ effect in action rather than directly to those that need it that have nothing.

    Double taxation agreements and the use of both local and international trusts also mean that many of our taxes are unable to be collected from our overseas residents that NZ residents born here are left paying.

    Also as there are so many rich taxpayers who are not fully tax resident in NZ who live here off and on, so the overseas rich can often get their cake and eat it too. Peter Thiel, Trump supporter and anti democracy advocate, got citizenship in 11 days in NZ and it was revealed he did not expect to ever live here even though he owns a multi million dollar estate in Queenstown and can use multiple residencies around the world to improve his business reach and government lobbying throughout the world, creating more business advantage to him and his ideas and cutting out other businesses with similar technology.

    An insecure job that pays minimum wages or even living wages is not going to increase prosperity in NZ because the cost of living is out of control due to increased demand. It takes a lot of builders and a long time to build these 30 million dollar mansions, builders than are not engaged to build for ordinary people any more!

    Instead of greater incomes from prosperity, we are getting jobs that used to pay a lot more now paying much less (aka telecoms) now dropping like a stone for Chorus workers who seem to be able to legally earn below minimum wages.

    The telecom industry can only do that with government help through immigration and allowing the subcontractor model, as the locals would not work below minimum wages or be very reluctant to work below they used to earn, so it is actually government policy with foreign CEO’s of foreign and NZ business, forcing local wages to fall and the lobbying of that, to save money, that has led to formally well paid industries in tech, now being precarious and very poorly paid.

    Commentators need to take off the blinkers and look at all the factors that have created social dysfunction in NZ. They need to understand the past, as well as look at current factors, warts and all, that are leading to social dysfunction in NZ.

    Not just say, tax more. It’s how and who they tax to make it fair and get people who are NOT paying their taxes (often through overseas agreements) or never taxed at all like some of the wealthy drug dealers flitting in and out of NZ, as well as bother to make industries making stratospheric profits to pay their share (aka banks) and how NZ governments manage NZ’s deliberate stratospheric demand through low, underpaid, ideological or no wage immigration, that is ignored.

    There should be an ‘export’ of profits tax put in at the very least so we can try to retain investment in NZ and counter all the advantages large foreign companies have against NZ ones! But of course probably against the trade deals!

    • Housing for example is a numbers game. If we had an additional 70,000 new residents per year, 150,000+ new work permits given out per year, and 5 million tourists they all need somewhere to live and stay…. that is a lot of housing, a lot of transport needed, a lot of new hospitals and a lot of pollution and carbon to control…

      The way taxes spent is also a major issue. Quite simply the government demands more taxes and then fails to spend it on what they claim it was for and for the people who paid the money for it. For example the petrol taxes in Auckland were supposedly for rail to speed up Auckland, but we see as usual it is going towards upgrade of the Puhinui Rail Station Interchange (aka the building itself not rail) and for more buses (not rail) and benefits richer folks and tourists going to the Airport, not commuters who are trying to get to work and now have less lanes from the sound of it if they are not going to the airport….

      Meanwhile Auckland commuters are getting poorer such as teachers and beneficiaries … our pollution is increasing, carbon is not being reduced by fancy transport buildings and more buses so rich people and tourists can more easily fly around NZ increasing our carbon footprint at the expense of those who can least afford it or lose precious time each day as our transport money is put into construction and more lanes for buses not functioning RAIL !

  13. Can’t say I agreed with much being said, but great video. It’s sad that the MSM have ignored their obligation and responsibility to do things like this.

  14. NHS and shit chicken on the table for Trump trade deal, by the sounds of it.

    US wants access to NHS in post-Brexit deal, says Trump ally

    Trade deals are soooo beneficial to the masses, NOT.

    Meanwhile looks like overseas pension funds are doing well buying NZ assets, US-owned firm cleared to buy Auckland high-rise for $144.5m,

    meanwhile NZ savers find unexpected tax bills from Kiwisaver… and high fees

    I guess NZ fund managers don’t have to work too hard since they charge 20% of the profits on average in Kiwisaver and clearly are not too interested in investing in NZ assets, judging by the OIA which is constantly approving NZ assets to be sold and traded by foreign organisations that make the profits (fraud convictions fine too).

    “Data from shows that, since inception, the average KiwiSaver fund has returned 5.2%, with the average fee being 1.1%. That means, for a decade now, over 20% of everything made by the average KiwiSaver has been taken away in fees”

    Just in today’s quick scan of news

    US-owned firm cleared to buy Auckland high-rise for $144.5m

    $413m Canterbury seed deal cleared, Danes to bring new screening tech to NZ

    Agria to Launch Partial Takeover Offer for PGG Wrightson Limited

    PGG Wrightson shareholder Agria settles US fraud

    “In Washington overnight, the SEC said it had settled with Agria, which had agreed to pay US$3 million ($4.3m) for fraudulent accounting between 2010 and 2013, primarily around how it overstated the value of stock and Chinese land use rights.”

    Commerce Commission clears PGG Wrightson to sell seeds business

    (against the The New Zealand Shareholders’ Association opposing the transaction)

    We are getting poorer people and our own savings don’t appear to be propping up NZ shareholders businesses!

  15. As well as having some of the highest profits in the world for banks and drug users NZ also seems to boast another socially bizarre statistic… we have the world’s more expensive child care charges vs income.

    “These countries have the most expensive childcare”

    “The most expensive country is New Zealand. Based on 2017/18 data, a couple with two young children earning the average wage have to devote 37.3% of their pay to childcare. There are only three other countries where more than 30% of a couple’s average salary earnings go toward childcare: Australia (31.1%), the US (33.2%) and the UK (35.7%).”

    Maybe having a low wage, high profit economy based on neoliberalism and Ponzi schemes is not all it’s cracked up to be…

    We also have apparently more lawyers per capita than the UK and this type of bad advice and encouragement of court action to aid more fees is why being a lawyer in NZ is so lucrative (especially council and government lawyers advising on the laws and conduct which makes more money for themselves by creating more legal quagmires)..

    Don’t even get me started on the prices and ponzi’s on construction here… which our entire economy from roads to school and hospital buildings to housing which is slow, expensive and poor quality needing remedial work within years and full of morons advising to continue to construct in the same way making things worse. (thus creating the Ponzi of more construction that can never be met as nothing lasts here).

    (With the poor above, you have to wonder what they need to construct an extremely expensive pool away from the schools on the edge of town, rather than renovate the existing one, which they plan to demolish by the sound of it). More crazy stuff that someone will be making development, construction and legal money out of, paid for by the ratepayers who ain’t exactly all rich in that area!

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