Posts by mark taslov

  • Polity: Is being a tax haven worth it?,


    Jeeves: It’s an odd one sir. They managed to quite successfully see their way past the abductions and incarcerations, the death penalty, forced abortions, unenforced labour legislation and the horrendous environmental and human rights records when negotiating their FTA with China. Their waterways are, erm, murky. They are unable to deal with a housing crisis or accommodate their beneficiaries. They export live sheep dead to our friends the Saudis and yet their opposition party does still seem unduly concerned about ‘a bit of reputation’.

    Wooster: ‘a bit of reputation’?

    Jeeves: It would seem that’s the chief consideration sir. Their opposition leader’s argument against the trusts was that these trusts are causing them “further international embarrassment.” It appears that he is voicing these concerns largely on behalf of the exporters.

    Wooster: The exporters?

    Jeeves: Well not all the exporters sir, the…their primary exporters. The exporting rabble know full well that their livelihood largely hinges on them being able to offer a marketable commodity at a competitive price.

    Wooster: Sorry you quite lost me there Jeeves. And these primary exporters?

    Jeeves: Largely the wealthy sir…

    Wooster: Trust funders?

    Jeeves: Like yourself sir, wealthy people who deal exclusively with other wealthy people. And the opposition party appear to believe that this leeway for foreign trusts might put a gentleman such as sir’s good self off purchasing their commodities…

    Wooster: Do we have a New Zealand based trust Jeeves?

    Jeeves: Why of course sir.

    Wooster: Are we in possession of their commodities?

    Jeeze: Certainly, sir’s cellar contains many samples of their finest.

    Wooster: And this opposition party is concerned that their Government’s protection of our God given right to own a trust in this colony may dissuade us from engaging in business with them at the expense of acquiring more wealth to consolidate in our trusts?

    Jeeves: Well yes sir.

    Wooster: But that’s absurd Jeeves. Inconveniencing the moneyed elite by preventing us from holding a trust, and doing so primarily on behalf of other elite to protect a muddied reputation in the name of money?

    Jeeves: Well yes sir, though I do believe that the thrust of the argument may be that ordinary people pay taxes and don’t have trusts, let alone foreign trusts. There does appear to be a consensus among their local commentators that Westminster might prevent Sainsbury’s from purchasing New Zealand lamb unless the New Zealand Government steps in to prevent you from exploiting their trust system and evading our tax system, sir.

    Wooster: But I am a Lord Jeeves! This is the honest toil of a Westminster man, for what benefit would we do such a thing?

    Jeeves: Yes, very good Sir, the proposed limitations do seem geared to appeal primarily to those most unusually ethical nations on the outskirts of the globe. As you quite rightly observe, their approach seems to centre around the damage the trust legislation may do to one’s reputation, at least a perception of one.

    Wooster: Ah yes, perception, it tends to require a certain keenness. Why don’t these appeasers simply label this practice/ system what-have-you as what it is: anti egalitarian, and run with that in a concerted effort to generate a genuine groundswell of support among the underpaid voters in their electorates?

    Jeeves: Cup of tea sir?

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Talking past each other:…, in reply to Sacha,

    The world is mainly beautiful.

    Good on you Sacha, that was an inspiring post. *hugs*

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Talking past each other:…, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    We have seen a huge decrease in tobacco consumption with the increase in taxation but who pays? the offender or the victim?.

    Some interesting things to consider there Steve. Most notably is that the huge decrease hasn’t occurred in isolation but as part of a vast raft of measures.

    With regards to smoking and any addiction I think it’s well worth asking how much much income we as a society wish to derive from citizens’ addictions and misery. I’d wager that by’offenders’ above you were citing tobacco companies,but the fact remains that the profit derived by tobacco companies is a pittance compared to the taxation accrued by the Government at smokers’ expense.

    Having lived through some of these implemented measures, I’ve found the effects on my own consumption oddly circular, I pay $45 or so dollars now for a 30g of tobacco up from $15 dollars 2 decades ago, a pricing plan that has put me in the enviable position of now growing my tobacco for myself and anyone else that wishes to ‘steal’ some. The seeds were not difficult to acquire, and I managed to source another plant at the local market, grown by a horticultural lecturer at our local government funded polytech.

    I don’t wish to discredit taxation as a means of quelling consumer demand, but I fear when that taxation becomes so exorbitant that it’s creating new cottage industries to avoid this taxation while the Government generates record breaking income, then more wherewithal is required by authorities as to what may constitute realistic and reasonable outcomes.

    With regards to the topic at hand, I’m astonished as to how we could stage such a debate, a debate essentially about the human body, without much said about either the role our water consumption may play in mitigating the effects of poor diet, and as an appetite suppressant, and even more obviously the role exercise (?) plays in maintaining health. It’s almost a discussion about a machine, focusing on one fuel element with little concern for the output i.e. the function of the machine.

    For those calling for taxation, I see this as an ideal opportunity to ask how much tax will be enough and and what point might that taxation cross the line from a reasonable measure for improving public health to cynical income generation off the back of addiction ~ with possible undesirable side effects such as losing control of supply, pricing; the market essentially.

    When you have a taxation system that has become so convoluted that prime time TV adverts tout NZ’s first Consumer trusted tax refund company in assisting taxpayers in legally accessing refunds they’ve been overtaxed, and succeeding in doing so with 9/10 customers, then you can more or less guarantee that in this kind of environment the implementation of yet another tax will not be an easy sell.

    If this taxation were being proposed with the objective of funding a full dental care program then I would most probably support it.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Access: The Meltdown, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    I’m neither qualified nor experienced Hilary, I was just wondering if there is something a little less loaded, in order to better distinguish these episodes from their temper tantrum namesake.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Access: The Meltdown,

    Thanks for this Russell, I’m curious, does the medical community have an alternative to the terminology “meltdown” or is that as advanced as our current description of these issues reaches (replete with the implied associations with irreversible destruction, toxicity, radioactive half life, genetic mutation, evacuation and death)?

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Cui bono?,

    Pity the family member quoted in the article you linked to has few qualms about using the potential power of this manifestation of mental illness to have a bit of go at someone else…

    Absolutely Rosemary, there are serious questions that need to be asked here regarding the support available for all concerned.

    He chooses to be an arsehole. His mental illness issues are shared by many others who manage not to be persistently nasty towards others.

    Sacha, so the sufferers of chronic depression etc who are similarly unable to contain the anger and emotional outbursts associated with their disorder – causing them to negatively impact the lives of those around them – are “arseholes” and managing illness largely boil down to the apparently simple act of patients choosing not to display the symptoms of the condition?

    Not being in possession of a world view that contains a dismissive ‘arsehole’ category for living breathing beings, especially not those afflicted with underlying issues, I can only assume that your propensity to pigeon hole people in your “arsehole” category and broadcast that judgement may feel like something of an imperative, just as it may for someone with ‘lazy prick’ or ‘feral’ categories, What may differ however are your respective senses of agency.

    This site is incredibly progressive in its exposure of issues surrounding disablement, as for mental illness, there’s clearly so much ground to cover.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Cui bono?,

    Cameron Slater has a mental illness that causes him to attack, with a great deal of savagery, those who are also clearly suffering pain and disablement.

    Exactly Rosemary, and that is why amplifying, emulating and disseminating that affected voice and advancing those page views is not in society’s best interests.He is the pin up boy for a failed mental health system:

    He shoots from the hip with no thought of the consequences for himself for others or indeed his family. The very fact that he says hurtful things that show a total lack of empathy is the evidence that he is seriously ill.

    “He watches me cry my eyes out again and again and it moves him not one iota. You want me to be upset that he has hurt others? I am too busy dealing with his lack of empathy towards me."

    because he does has some influence…at the highest of levels.

    Clearer than that is that the highest levels have had absolute influence on the life and livelihood of this compromised individual. His family have yet to meaningfully intervene.

    Surely, if he wanted to deal with his issues, first and foremost would be to stop what he’s doing.

    I suspect that it’s indicative of the level of compulsion he’s grappling with right now Sofie, The potential remains for him to become a force for good in this world and in the mean time if we see this type of behaviour for what it is – symptomatic of illness – this presents a softer landing for many.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Cui bono?, in reply to Marc C,

    Thanks for your reply Marc, that is awesome.. Anyone who lacks advocacy is in big trouble, some are very lucky to enjoy the support networks they have. That these support networks are so needed is testament to our having produced generations of school leavers lacking the confidence and/or the ability to articulate themselves far beyond “Speights.”

    The vacuum left by so many moderate voices can only distort our national discourse, A thread begins with some excellent suggestions for improving our benefits system and ends up with a commentator calling “feral” in response to the unfortunate comments made by a prominent mental illness sufferer in our community – his word, hiffed to the forefront of our modern popular lexicon, the way he sees people, a totally inappropriate choice on his part planted in the armoury of an enemy he craves..

    Due to the nature of mental illness, anything Cameron Slater says is subject to the influence of his illness. Yes he puts that tone out there, but at the end of the day it’s a symptom of a greater problem, he is high conflict, clearly he is dealing with a great deal of pain. In this context we are equipped to either ignore or absorb that without retaliation, just as we would the outbursts of a Tourette sufferer, a choice most with sufficient empathy are free to make.

    Is Paul Henry about to have another meltdown?

    As spectacular as that portrayal sounds – I certainly hope not, but if he is then perhaps a quiet word in the ear rather than a nasty national news headline might better benefit everyone concerned.


    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Cui bono?, in reply to DeepRed,

    gig economy

    No not exclusively, my last work provided full time contracts and had difficulty finding teachers willing to sign up for that. There is all sorts of work and plenty of opportunities available, long or short term, contracted or freelance, poorly remunerated for the most part but there all the same,

    that the article defines hosting an online shop as a 'gig' where as a bricks and mortar version would be seen as a business. While the article appears to largely ignore the fact that many RL industries are and always have been a 'gig' for most players involved, 'gig economy' as used in the article to describe the more encompassing and 'online economy' is lazy pigeon holing from the Guardian. Like the RL job market the internet presents an array of opportunities.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Cui bono?,

    oops, sorry Rosemary, my reply to Sofie, anyway, that’s me have a great year people!

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1778 posts Report Reply

Last ←Newer Page 1 2 3 4 5 177 Older→ First