About Morgiania

Treasurer and admin for NEP. Retired, living in Levin. !5 years in Social Housing in Untied Kingdom. Returned to New Zealand just over 4 years ago and was shocked at the change in the country. The inequality that has developed in 20 years is almost unbelievable. I am a back room type person so you won't see me blogging or twittering, but just quietly doing the admin.

Change Tax Policy and Control Banks for Affordable Housing, says New Economics Party

January 31, 2013

Media Statement

To get affordable housing we need a tax policy which favours investment in productive enterprises not housing, says the New Economics Party.

“If we don’t control capital coming into New Zealand and then don’t stop it going into housing through our tax policy, it’s no wonder we have a housing bubble in Auckland”, said Deirdre Kent, spokesperson for the New Economics Party. “And if we let the banks lend 100% on housing, we are asking for trouble.”

Freeing up land and changing the Resource Management Act is not working, she said.

“Banks are pushing money onto buyers and we effectively have a bubble which will eventually collapse. Wealthy Chinese are buying here to get their money out of China where they are clamping down on corruption. A lot goes into real estate.”

No progress will be made towards affordable housing until land tenure is separated from buildings, according to the New Economics Party. Spokesperson Deirdre Kent said “Until we impose a full ground rent – which can replace income tax as a source of revenue for Government – we won’t get any progress.”

She said that when homeowners just have to pay the price of the building, the price of the home is halved. “In Auckland where land is on average 60% of the property price, the price would drop even further if a full ground rent was imposed.”

“When property prices rise, it is almost solely because the price of land rises. Generally, the price of the house doesn’t rise. When the public captures the windfall from rising land prices instead of the banks and the private owners house prices will be finally contained,” she said.

She said some Auckland leasehold land fetched a ground rent of 5% of land value at auction and this money should really be public money because it is the public who has paid for the services to that land in roads, schools, sewers and businesses.

“Others have recently been proposing solutions to affordable housing but they are just tinkering around the edges.”

Hordur Torfason, democracy activist from Iceland to visit New Zealand

New Economics Newsletter Jan 26-2013

1.  Hordor Torfason is coming to New ZealandYes we know there is a permaculture hui in Taranaki 9-11 March and then there is WOMAD after it. But here is something really relevant to our policy we will support. Hordor Torfason is coming to New Zealand. Never heard of him? I hadn’t either. Well he led the protestors in Iceland and forced the whole government to resign. They nationalised the banks. They pushed the losses on to the bondholders not the public. Paul Krugman said “A funny thing happened on the way to economic Armageddon: Iceland’s very desperation made conventional behavior impossible, freeing the nation to break the rules. Where everyone else bailed out the bankers and made the public pay the price, Iceland let the banks go bust and actually expanded its social safety net. Where everyone else was fixated on trying to placate international investors, Iceland imposed temporary controls on the movement of capital to give itself room to maneuver.”Not only did Paul Krugman approved but the IMF changed its tune and said the “decision not to make taxpayers liable for bank losses was right”.http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/08/top-economists-iceland-did-it-right-everyone-else-is-doing-it-wrong.html. Krugman also says:

A funny thing happened on the way to economic Armageddon: Iceland’s very desperation made conventional behavior impossible, freeing the nation to break the rules. Where everyone else bailed out the bankers and made the public pay the price, Iceland let the banks go bust and actually expanded its social safety net. Where everyone else was fixated on trying to placate international investors, Iceland imposed temporary controls on the movement of capital to give itself room to maneuver.

The size of the problem was huge. Banks had defaulted on $85 billion. They arrested nine bankers and the former Prime Minister. 200 criminal charges were laid on the bankers, many of whom had fled the country.

Anyway here’s what you can do. Go to the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/HordurTorfasonNzTour?fref=ts where you can link to all those sites, including to the pledgeme site where you can support his tour. He will be in Auckland on March 18 and 19, Wellington on March 20, Hawke’s Bay on March 21st, Golden Bay on March 23, Nelson on March 24th, Christchurch March 25-26 and Dunedin 27-28.Hordur Torfason, we understand, is primarily a democracy advocate. We are undertaking as a party to prepare two reports to brief him, one on democracy in NZ, and one on banking in NZ. If you would like to participate in preparing these briefs, or have ideas for people we must consult, please email Deirdre at deirdre.kent@gmail.com or phone 06 364 7779 or 021 728 852.Please also help in the publicity for this event through Facebook, twitter, google +1 etc. You can email lisa.er@the awareness party if you can think of an organisation which should be involved in publicity. Thanks!2.There is an Economics of Happiness conference between 15-17 March to be held in Byron Bay, 772 km north of Sydney. Cost $250 AUD plus accommodation. See http://www.theeconomicsofhappiness.org/3.If you would like to participate in developing policy you will need a special yammer email, which can be generated by Deck Hazen. Please email Deck.hazen@gmail.com to let him know you are interested. This is an excellent site.4.Permaculture in NZ Annual Hui in Taranaki March 9-11 2013

Taranaki is hosting this year’s national Permaculture Hui, and they picked the March date so you can stay on after the hui to take in some of the post hui events. Get together with people of like mind and find out what is happening in the permaculture community.

Accommodation includes cabins (limited), dormitories, marae-style, and BYO camping, with a maximum capacity of 250 people. There are other accommodation options nearby.

The theme of the Hui is “Upskilling“, with an emphasis on practical workshops. There will be a wide range of talks and activities, including a strong matauranga Maori presence. We aim to appeal to both the novice and the seasoned permaculture practitioner. There will also be lots of connecting with people, networking, and having fun!







Deirdre’s reply to an article on STUFF-CAN YOU FIX THE ECONOMY

Lara. What a delight to find your excellent article on Stuff! It is great that you were able to reproduce the graph published by Margrit Kennedy showing the effect of interest on widening the gap between rich and poor. This big study needs to be repeated in many countries.

One correction. Bernard Lietaer contacted the Wōrgl museum and discovered that the work certificates (the local currency issued with demurrage) circulated eight times as fast as the national currency. Whereas the work certificates circulated about once a day, the national schilling circulated about once a week.

Bernard Lietaer has co-authored four books published this year. Anyone who thinks he doesn’t know what he is talking about should answer the question “How come with the monetary system we now have, are there so many banking crises, monetary crashes and sovereign debt crises.” In the period between 1970 and 2010 the IMF has identified 145 banking crises, 208 monetary crises and 72 sovereign debt crises.

And now we have the mother of all crises unfolding before our eyes in US and Europe and the contagion can’t help but come our way. Lietaer and Belgin in their book New Money for a New World advocate a money system balanced between yin currencies (e.g with a demurrage) and yang currencies (with interest). They make the point that each country has a monopoly national currency and this is leading to the structural problems we now face.I think that the study of those economies of Dynastic Egypt, and the Central Middle Ages is showing that when there is a charge on the hoarding of money as in demurrage, a paradox exists. Holders of money spend it on long term investments like cathedrals, solidly built houses, artwork, good maintenance of equipment etc.

The same would happen today. People in their forties and fifties could properly prepare for their retirement, not just rely on financial advisers whose advice has included Ross Investments and finance companies which have gone bust.

Labour affordable housing scheme a ‘patch-on solution’

Media Statement
November 19, 2012

Labour affordable housing scheme a ‘patch-on solution’

A New Economics Party Spokesperson Deirdre Kent said that although Labour had the right goal, their proposed method of doing it doesn’t get to the bottom of the problem and is an artificial patch-on solution. “While land remains as an asset class to speculate on, property prices will keep rising. It is private landowners and banks who reap the unearned gains from rising land prices, and this widens the gap between rich and poor.”

“Land now comprises an average of 60% of the value of a property in Auckland,” she said. “These 100,000 affordable homes will be bought cheaply and flicked over for a profit, so at least Labour should put a caveat on each title to prevent that.”

“Only by addressing the rising land price problem at its roots can we wrench power from the overseas owned banks, which took $3.5 billion in profits last year out of the country. Other solutions are artificial and only work for a while.

“Until we wake up and see that the property bubble in Auckland concentrates wealth with landowners and banks, we will not make much progress in bridging the wealth gap,” she said. “Land should be treated as quite a different asset class to buildings. We need a method to take land out of the market place,” she said.

She said Labour’s weak Capital Gains Tax won’t touch the affordable housing problem, because it leaves the family home untouched and is set far too low anyway.

For further comment phone Deirdre Kent, 06 364 7779
021 728 852
New Economics Party