Minister of Finance reheats austerity politics

This morning’s pre-Budget speech from the Minister of Finance offered no “meaningful” news on the Government’s trickle-down economics based plans.

“We can expect tax cuts in the form of crumbs for everyone except those who own for a living. These decisions come at the cost of gutting public services, cutting half-price public transport, chopping fees-free prescriptions and slashing benefit increases, making life all the more difficult for anyone but those at the top. The Minister of Finance is basically just saying, let them eat cake,” says Green Party co-leader Chlöe Swarbrick. 

“The Reserve Bank told us in their Financial Stability report that the Government’s tax cuts for landlords will only increase house prices. It’s a $2.9 billion receipt of where their priorities are.

“Throughout the week, the Minister of Finance waved around the OECD’s Report, and before that, the IMF’s. Both told us we desperately need a capital gains tax for a fairer and more productive economy, as have the Minister’s own officials at Treasury.

“This Government needs to stop taking New Zealanders for chumps. The Minister said it herself: the Government’s tax cuts will be modest. However, the price we pay for them will be monumental. 

“There’s a reason one of the Government’s top priorities before Christmas was to quietly shred IRD’s public reporting requirements on the fairness of the tax system.

“Poverty is a political choice and this Government is telling us they’re intent on growing inequality. When someone tells you who they are, believe them,” says Chlöe Swarbrick. 

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