Paul - you miss the point - they did not even reply to me. No use was gained from them, and my access to them would be the same as any media type person - asking for some facts to be verified. Do you think it is bad that someone tries to verify some facts with a Minister's Office?
Also who is Phil?
And the more I look back at my post, the more astonished I am that Keith sees it as some sort of cunning PR plan. The very fact there were no graphs, and simple to digest images tends to undermine that. It was a text heavy highly wonky look (never done before incidentally which is why I did it) at the fiscal cost and impact on three different income levels of not just each tax package, but the ten or so elements making up each package. It was my inner policy wonk showing off as I took people through pages and pages of calculations - trust me not a short sharp selling document. Sure some political jabs in there but Keith is really off base by thinking that post is some sort of political sell job. Keith's own posts is far more in that mold - he has the pretty graphs showing evin National giving money to rich people.
And the three sample points is entirely valid depending on what the point of the post is. It was to illustrate the effects of different tax changes (around 15 or so in total) on different income levels, and what the fiscal cost of each was.
I can equally fisk Keith's graphs, such as using all income earners (includes 16 year olds who work five hours a week) instead of all FT wage earners. Which is more correct depends on what you are trying to do. If you are consumed with envy about how Paul Reynolds will get a bigger tax cut than a 16 year old part-time Subway worker, then you go for all income earners. If you are wanting to talk about people who are net taxpayers (excluding students, retired people etc) then FT workers is far better.
Keith - I would like you to apologise for your assertion that someone else authored/wrote/had input or even suggested my blog post.
Quite frankly I am sick of the blatant lies. Again quite happy to be hooked up to a polygraph or injected with truth serum. Also to swear an affadavit that it was all my own idea and work.
In fact to show how wrong you are I will reveal that after I did the initial calculations of fiscal cost of tax cuts (using the NZIER calculator) I did e-mail my spreadsheet to a couple of staffers in English's office. I asked if they could just confirm the accuracy of the fiscal costs of each element of tax cuts.
And you know what? They didn't even respond. Nope the bastards didn't even acknowledge my email. So I waited a few days and went ahead anyway.
So not only is your fantasy of others having thought of or written the material totally false. I couldn't even get anyone in Govt to do a simple fact check (something that they would do to a journalist). I actually had less assistance from the Govt than Keith got when he was a blogger (I recall Keith getting access to National's Treasury secondee).
So please stop inventing lies about me. No problems with you responding to the actual analysis, but don't just invent shit up.
Incidentially I choose the three salary points of $30K, $50k and $100k before I knew what they would show.
And also Keith you really should not lecture on transparency of relationships when you failed to even publicly announce you were leaving blogging to go work for Helen Clark. Fortunately I did it for you.
And yes I am pissed off. I expect The Standard to do the normal "someone write that for Farrar" routine. From you I expect the courtesy of an email or text asking me if anyone helped or even suggested my post. Especially after the conversation at the YL conference when I said how much it annoyed me that people assume I steal National's talking points and you agreed that in fact they often steal my talking points :-)
Incidentally the main reasons I did the post was to explore how much people had already got in tax cuts, and how much would they miss out with the impending cancellation of future ones. I was surprised as I went into it, how little difference there was between someone on $30K (if not on WFF) and $50K under Labour and National's packages, so happily pointed that out as I went.
But to be fair to Conrad it is a very common mistake. I have corrected dozens of people who have that belief. The bottom line is proportionality only applies on election night.
Conrad is wrong.
I don't regard ACT as far right. Remember ACT came from Labour and Phil Goff and Annette King were very loyal lieutenants to Roger Douglas.
And Russell - considering Labour label anything that involves using the private sector as "privatisation" you can hardly complain when Key does exactly what Labour has done hundreds of times. Instead of a sensible debate about competition in workplace accident insurance we hear every day about privatising ACC as if it was to be sold off to the private sector.
I would welcome a climate where greater use of the private sector can be debated without cries of privatisation. But Labour keep referring to privatising prisons for example also.
I have praised Shearer for his work around the globe - "David has a massive amount of respect for his aid work over the last two decades. And not as an administrator, but actually out there on the front lines making a huge difference to the life of many people." I think it is because he has seen first hand the suffering, that he is prepared to throw away ideology and support a role for private mercenary armies in protecting people. I don't think he is far right - I wish we had more MPs like him in Labour.
Of course it will be very very difficult for Labour to harp on about privatisation when one if their new MPs has advocated the use of the private sector in the most core of government functions - the military.
And it does beg the questions, if you agree with Shearer that the private sector can be used in armed conflicts (so long as it provides a better outcome than using the public sector), why would you not apply the same test to Corrections?
Eddie - I have criticised the use of urgency three or four times now.
The paranoia over the comments is as George D notes, misplaced. I always turn off comments when linking to my weekly NBR column, so people comment over there.
As for tax cuts and bureaucracy, Lyndon correctly notes the tax cuts are already funded.
Maybe the term should be the "Presumptive Prime Minister". He isn't technically the Prime Minister designate as no one has designated him.
A fair call Russell and others. Unlike the PM, I do do regrets, and I should have left the video alone.
In my defence I would have done an identical video of John key slipping up, and probably run a caption contest on it. But I should have known that it is a bit different with Clark as it would attract comments that go beyond the pale.
I also agree some of the comments should have been deleted but to put it mildly I have a severe shortage of time. Think around 20 blog posts in arrears and hundreds of emails. Plus the travel has made it hard to be online - demerits and bans works best when you do them early in a thread.
Post election I am going to try and get more assistance with some of the editorial/moderation side. The last experiment with moderators didn't work that well but I am going to try something different. Having said that with 12,000 comments a month there is a real limit on how much one can do.
I said "So while the announcement is a bold move in response to the credit crisis, it is one which causes me some concern."
Also "Ever since the Cullen Fund was established, I have had fears that as it grows larger, politicians would want to start directing where it is invested.
I doubt "the team" would see that as taking one for them. Yes I use mild language when criticising National, but I don't think many people would read my post as supportive.