Budget 2011

Politics and the rest of world's madness all in here!
Red_switch
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Red_switch » Thu May 19, 2011 8:59 pm

Yea if I was studying towards a PhD rather than an MSc I probably could have hooked into something like that. Not too phased though.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Red_switch » Thu May 19, 2011 9:00 pm

NezumiNora wrote:Chances are if you live in Palmerston North you either have a PhD or are on the way to getting one... bugger all else to do round here


Yes, it would seem you are correct. Few good jokers up there.
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bridge.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby bridge. » Thu May 19, 2011 9:47 pm

So is that the only outrage that's come out of this budget on punkas? someone mistakenly thought they'd lose out on PhD funding?

That's not very punx guys.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Kev Japan » Thu May 19, 2011 9:54 pm

bridge. wrote:So is that the only outrage that's come out of this budget on punkas? someone mistakenly thought they'd lose out on PhD funding?

That's not very punx guys.


I haven't checked it out at all (haven't lived in NZ in over 13 years), just trying to offer constructive advice to someone trying to get ahead in life and make a difference in the world. Feel free to throw your hat in on what you feel is important.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Red_switch » Thu May 19, 2011 10:06 pm

bridge. wrote:So is that the only outrage that's come out of this budget on punkas? someone mistakenly thought they'd lose out on PhD funding?

That's not very punx guys.


don't you work for the gummint? Shitting bricks?
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bridge.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby bridge. » Thu May 19, 2011 10:34 pm

nope i don't.


My basic thoughts were that, as far as fiscal responsibility goes, it wasn't too bad.

I absolutely do not agree with selling state assets, but i've basically resigned to the fact that there is no strong main-stream opposition to key so might as well save up some money so i can buy some shares instead.

It also sounded like one of the least realistic budget's in a while in terms of the underlying assumptions. 4% increase in GDP next year? 4-5% payrises? not seeing it. Some of those numbers looked like they just scribbled some trend lines on a graph.

Also completely cynical about the increase in education spend - that $500m for early education spending is almost certainly to do with the continued trend of expenditure spiraling out of control, and not associated with any significant new initiatives. I also suspect the secondary teachers bargain settlement plays a large part in that $1.6bn.

One other thing - the $1bn cut in public service spending...I couldn't be stronger of the opinion that the majority of the public service is mind blowingly inefficient and needs to be completely remodelled. A $1bn cut wont do that, it'll just mean hacking away at bits and pieces, and probably all the wrong ones. But in principle, i don't disagree with reducing that funding.


That's pretty much it. Think it was very much a non-event in terms of what they could've done, and what there had been talks of doing in some areas...particularly DPB etc. Much relief in that respect.

Anyone else got thoughts beyond "omgz the sky is falling!!"?

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Kev Japan » Thu May 19, 2011 10:58 pm

"170,000 new jobs expected" + controversial six month trial employment period = Good for govt stats, easier for employers to manipulate and exploit workers, shit for a lot of people looking for any kind of job and not reflective of true increases in long-term employment.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby xsfat » Fri May 20, 2011 12:21 am

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/human-rights/ ... d=10726309
The Human Rights Commission has given a warning that Government plans to restrict older people's access to student loans to save cash may amount to illegal discrimination. Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce this week confirmed funding for tertiary education would be cut in tomorrow's Budget with savings mainly coming from tightening eligibility for student loans for over-55s and for students on some courses.

The Human Rights Commission yesterday said it had concerns about "any arbitrary age-related policy that restricted the ability of students to upskill and retrain". "Such a policy would potentially be unlawful discrimination under the Human Rights Act," said Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner Judy McGregor. She urged the Government to explore "non-discriminatory ways" to recover student loans.

Dr McGregor's comments come after criticism from the Greens, as well as Grey Power and the Union of Students Associations that the plan was discriminatory and possibly in breach of both the Human Rights Act and Bill of Rights Act. But Mr Joyce yesterday said he had sought advice from officials and was satisfied the change was consistent with the Bill of Rights Act. "We would still look to retain loans for fees, it would be things like living costs that we would be concerned about."

Mr Joyce told the Herald the Government wrote off 70 per cent of the $25 million it loaned to students aged 55 and over each year. Loans for fees account for about $15 million of that. "There isn't enough time left in their working life to repay their student loans, and while we want people to retrain, we need to make sure they are not borrowing money that they'll never get to pay back."

But Grey Power national president Roy Reid said he was concerned the loan restrictions would take place as pressure was growing to lift the age of eligibility for superannuation. Many workers were physically unable to continue in their existing jobs well before reaching the current age of eligibility at 65. "If they've got to retrain to do work they are capable of and that requires tertiary training, then they're really going to be disadvantaged."

Time and time again, important rights against discrimination are ignored and trampled over.
The focus should rightly be on the ability to pay back the loan, rather than age.
Another option, could have been to implement a system where a "charge" or caveat is placed on property and other valuables to ensure money is paid before an asset is disposed (much like legal aid repayments).

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Kev Japan » Fri May 20, 2011 12:45 am

Glad the HRC are chiming in on this. What a fucking farce.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby the croc » Fri May 20, 2011 4:17 am

Pretty fucked off that the student loan holiday has been reduced from three years to one year. It means now I have to find $3000 to $6000 to make compulsory repayments if I want to do my masters overseas which I was planning to do. The plan was to get skills overseas that can't be got in NZ and then move back to NZ for good. Now that idea could be in the shitter.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby dustbinflowers » Fri May 20, 2011 9:09 am

Those were the things I was worried about- I maybe did go off a bit half cocked- reacting to the restrictions to people who have not paid back existing student loans in the past. I'm pretty sure I've always paid back stuff, but am not completely sure about back in the blurry 90s.
Thanks for the ideas on post grad- will look into them.

The rest of the budget is really more of what we have come to expect from this government- cutting back from those at the bottom of the pile, while making excuses for those at the top.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby NezumiNora » Fri May 20, 2011 9:11 am

Um how is that not very punx? Milo from Descendants and and Greg from Bad Religion have PhDs. PhDs are punk as, bro!!

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby dustbinflowers » Fri May 20, 2011 9:18 am

yep, have always thought of punks being geeks- whether they are collector geeks (patches, music) bike punks, bush punks or brew punks. (or whatever)
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby akaxo » Fri May 20, 2011 9:29 am

i think the unpunx bit was about there not being more righteous outrage at the actions of the government rather than doing post grad work. i'm still going through it ha, those summary docs like what was linked to earlier aren't overly comprehensive...
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Fiction & Falsehood » Fri May 20, 2011 9:35 am

one of the templars is an MD
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Red_switch » Fri May 20, 2011 10:38 am

I'd assume he got it in the states, which most likely makes him a medical Dr., rather than a holder of a doctoral degree.
I think it's lint.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Fiction & Falsehood » Fri May 20, 2011 10:56 am

well yes... isnt that what an MD is?
apparently he was one of the doctors at ground zero
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Red_switch » Fri May 20, 2011 11:12 am

Gnarly shit. Yea that's what it is in the states, but the use of MD varies fairly widely, MD is not what medical doctors in NZ get through their undergrad degree (it's an MB ChB), but is reserved for postgraduate PhD level study.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby akaxo » Fri May 20, 2011 11:18 am

bridge. was bang on about the quality of the predictions in this budget, they may as well have just grabbed a pen and drawn squiggly lines on the graphs wherever they pleased. treasury have had an atrocious record recently on doing this and the govt has chosen to base all their "everything is going to be awesome in the next few years" on treasury's predictions. on the predicated tax take for example they used treasury's rather than the IRD's which is a LOT less.

the standard posted this interview with the chief treasury analyst that pretty much sums it up:
[video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1fWmc1y4qc[/video]

the budget also has the $$ from the sales of state assets included in it too. putting in the money from sales that haven't happened yet and assuming the price you'll get isn't really best practice i'd have thought. there is also no attempt at restricting foreign ownership of what they want to flog off either.

the tax being introduced on the employers kiwisaver contribution is pretty crap and has barely rated a mention on the news i've seen. it'll mean the employer contribution increase will effectively go to the govt instead of the kiwisaver accounts. and don't forget that in 2009 they changed the law so that employers can offset their contribution against wage increases so most employers won't really be paying more at all. amounts to a new tax for kiwisaver people, now there's an incentive to be part of it...

the drop in weekly borrowing from $380million to $100million that got the applause from the nat MPs needs to be seen in the context of how the borrowing is happening. currently the govt is borrowing more than it needs as it's getting it at a good rate. next years borrowing is so much less because they are already borrowing money for the future so the real drop in the amount of extra money needed isn't as much as they are saying.

the $1billion in cuts for the public service is another one that will hurt. i'm sure there's inefficiencies that could be improved but simply giving them less money isn't going to fix that imo. there's no real information on where the savings are going to come from, that's up to the departments themselves. considering how many times they've had to deal with cut's in their budget over the last few decades it's hard to see how it will not effect services. also makes the claim that average nz wages will increase by 4% when public sector workers aren't getting any increases in this budget. that's an even bigger increase for everyone else to make that the average increase. pretty hard to believe really.

the working for family cuts don't seem that drastic on the surface, spread over eight years and only shaving a small amount off, bugger all of a cut really right? what they don't mention though is that the income thresholds over those eight years aren't going to be adjusted for inflation, that's where the real cut is going to occur.

tl;dr? their rosey future is a load of arse

edited to fix a typo
Last edited by akaxo on Fri May 20, 2011 1:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby akaxo » Fri May 20, 2011 11:34 am

the PSA talking about the job losses to come due to the budget:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/ne ... ector-cuts

also mentions the cut to public sector funding for the employer contributions to kiwisaver. they'll still have to be paid of course but will now be coming out of the department's operating budgets rather than having specific funding from the govt. so the real cut's are well over the $1 billion being talked about.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby martyrdamn » Fri May 20, 2011 12:21 pm

the croc wrote:Pretty fucked off that the student loan holiday has been reduced from three years to one year. It means now I have to find $3000 to $6000 to make compulsory repayments if I want to do my masters overseas which I was planning to do. The plan was to get skills overseas that can't be got in NZ and then move back to NZ for good. Now that idea could be in the shitter.


I'm 90% sure that student loans remain interest free and non-repayable no matter what if you're studying post-grad overseas. (e.g. http://www.ird.govt.nz/studentloans/overseas/interest-free/#03 )
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby kimura » Fri May 20, 2011 1:30 pm

Studying in Japan is a cheap option , can't student loan it but lots of universities there have Scholarships for international students that aren't too hard to get plus the costs are often cheaper for foreign students than domestic students (Ritsumeikan, tsukuba, tenrei universities etc)

But yeah Budget is a bit doom and gloom, but not as hardout as the U.K's at least...

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby xsfat » Sun May 22, 2011 12:03 am

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/artic ... d=10726780
A fairytale of high hopes on a frayed thread
Abracadabra. Hey, presto. Whatever your wish, a supposedly cash-challenged Bill English can deliver (unless you are a civil servant in Wellington, in which case forget it). Rebuild Christchurch? No problem. Higher wages? You'll get them. More jobs? Plenty coming. Less borrowing? You bet. No more deficits? Sooner than you think.

Spare us the pixie dust. Few would quibble about the desirability of meeting all of those objectives. But the Budget's narrative all seems just a little too much like a fairytale to be true. Far more so when you discover it all hangs by a very frayed thread - that the Treasury has got it right in forecasting the economy is poised to go into recovery mode and growth will reach 4 per cent within two years.

At that point you get that sinking feeling. There would be grounds for optimism had the Treasury not been forced to frequently revise its over-optimistic growth forecasts downwards since the economy went into a prolonged downturn in 2008. The Budget's credibility begins to get even more stretched once you read the fine print, which suggests the Treasury itself is not entirely convinced that economic growth will be such to bring in sufficient tax revenue to meet those objectives. It stretches more once you discover that the Inland Revenue Department's forecasts of tax revenue are somewhat lower than the Treasury's. And yet more when you realise that the Treasury's forecasting record shows it under- or overestimating revenue by up to $3 billion either way. And more again when you factor in the unexpected. And there has been plenty of that in the past 12 months.

The Prime Minister and his colleagues say their soundings, plus anecdotal evidence, indicate an upturn is happening. Economists are in agreement that a few shards of light are now penetrating the gloom. But they were duped by similar mirages of recovery at the time of last year's Budget. The political stakes are now much higher. With the cost of living now rearing its head and only six months until the election, National needs concrete evidence of an economy on the rebound to convince hard-pressed households that the forecast wage rises of above 4 per cent are in the pipeline. If the current slump continues or even worsens - and the Budget could well have a contractionary effect - then National will have its work cut out convincing people that things will suddenly get better on the other side of polling day.

The reliance on the Treasury forecasts has been intensified by the Prime Minister's reluctance to upset too many people through too much cost-cutting. Thus the cuts in the Government top-up of KiwiSaver accounts and the introduction of a higher rate of employee-employer contributions do not kick in for between 18 months and two years. Similar political sensitivities are evident in the equally lengthy phasing-in of reductions in Working for Families entitlements, which will leave some families in swing-voter middle-income brackets out of pocket.

Where Key and English have thrown caution to the wind is in mounting a slash-and-burn exercise across the public service. The Budget's requirement that state agencies find close to $1 billion in savings over the next three years could mean cuts in the core administration budget across government departments of up to 18 per cent unless some services and programmes are axed - something that would run counter to National's promise to boost frontline services, not chop them.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby JJ 2011 » Sun May 22, 2011 12:22 am

Fuck National.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby akaxo » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:24 am

so yeah those treasury forecasts, they're even saying themselves they are too optimistic and the growth and jobs to come that national are saying this budget and their policies will bring aren't likely after all. surprise surprise.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news ... d=10729707

handy graph from the standard showing just how good they have been at predicting growth:

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though i think they have stuffed up and left the 2011 projection off it by mistake but you get the idea, it won't differ too much from the others.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby dustbinflowers » Fri Jun 03, 2011 11:21 am

That's a better graph :)
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby akaxo » Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:03 pm

haha was going to say something about the labelling of axes for your benefit :)
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby Marrow » Wed Sep 14, 2011 4:30 pm

akaxo wrote:why the issue with doing a PhD? haven't seen anything about student loans in detail.

kiwisaver employer contributions to now be taxed is a sneaky one that isn't good for people doing kiwisaver.


bumping this thread because I was looking over the latest Superannuation documents/prospectus today.
Had some interesting bits that basically stated (paraphrasing here)
-Kiwisaver is way more successful than they anticipated (which I don't get, seeing as they've forced everyone into it. What *were* they expecting?) with about 1.7 million people on it.
-Due to this apparently huge number of people on their scheme, they can't actually support the benefits that were originally promised
-employer tax free 2% input is being cut (the tax free part from what I could understand)
-the annual ~$1048 tax credits is being halved
-The compulsory amount for employees is being raised from 2% to 3% so that you're still saving a similar amount after the cuts.

TLDR: Not a huge change, but making any adjustments to a compulsory scheme like this sets a bad precedent.

Anyway, I'm not really a finance/accounting pro, but punkas seems to have experts in everything, so if you know more about this, drop in some input.
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Re: Budget 2011

Postby bridge. » Wed Sep 14, 2011 6:27 pm

It's not compulsory though just sayin.

not yet anyway.

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Re: Budget 2011

Postby dustbinflowers » Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:58 pm

I'm so planning to draw my kiwisaver for land deposit, and set up my own saving/investment plan. I don't like the lack of control of the type of investment with kiwisaver. It has been handy til now, but super funds have a habit of dissolving..
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