Dr Muriel Newman

Election 2017: Idealism vs Realism

Last week we looked at the economic policies of the Parliamentary parties. This week we dig deeper into the party manifestos. While Labour has changed its cheer leader, its policies and loyalties remain the same.


Frank Newman

Political Promises

Promises, promises, promises, seems to be the theme of the election campaigns to date. Given the uncertainty of the result, the promises have more relevance. Unfortunately, for property investors some of the promises may not be welcome.


Dr Muriel Newman

Election 2017: Taxing and Spending

Election promises have been coming so thick and fast it feels like Christmas. National kicked off their pledges with the announcement that if re-elected, $10.5 billion over ten years will be invested in roading infrastructure to open up the economic potential of the regions .


Anthony Willy

Binding referenda - should we allow them

The New Zealand First Party has promised that if it is invited into a coalition government following the general election on the 23 September one of it's not negotiable policies will be to require the prospective coalition partner to agree to two binding referenda: One asking whether to retain the Maori seats, the other whether the number of Members of Parliament should be reduced to 100.


Dr Muriel Newman

Bureaucracy Rules

A couple of months ago, a news story dubbed “Lemonadegate” made international news. It involved the daughter of a New Zealander living in London, who was fined £150 for setting up a stand and selling lemonade without a permit. She was five-years-old.


Christopher Snowden

Only following orders

You've probably read about the five year old lemonade criminal of Tower Hamlets. She was selling lemonade outside her house on a sunny day, as children do, when four 'enforcement officers' charged her with trading without a licence and issued a £150 fine.


Dr Muriel Newman

The Water Debate

Fresh water is an election issue. The export of bottled water has become the focus of an emotional debate that is being relentlessly politicised and propagandised.


Michael Coote

Will water flow to Maori?

Calls to make freshwater rights an election issue have intensified. Critical to the discussion are whose rights are meant, how such rights are defined and what costs and benefits arise.


Dr Muriel Newman

Super Policy Under Scrutiny

A new survey, released this week by the ABS Bank, found that one in five New Zealanders are strongly opposed to National’s plan to lift the retirement age from 65 to 67.


Michael Littlewood

Retirement income policies: what we know and what we don’t

New Zealand has a retirement income framework that, compared with the rest of the developed world, is closest to our ideal. However, that’s a low bar to clear. We can make things much better but we must start with impeccable, deep data.