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David @ Tokyo

Perspective from Japan on whaling and whale meat, a spot of gourmet news, and monthly updates of whale meat stockpile statistics



NZ Election 2005: It's people like this that make me want to vote ACT

Dr Graham Scott, recently announced at number 5 on the ACT parties' list has a great speech: 'Why I'm with ACT and why National needs us'

At the risk of immodesty, the fact is that I know more about controlling government expenditure than the National front bench. They are talking as though it will be easy to cut enough fat from the state to pay for tax cuts – it won’t be. Believe me I’ve been there and I have done that. The combination of the State Enterprises Act, the Public Finance Act and the State Sector Act, which I helped to design and implement, brought remarkable improvements in the effectiveness of public organisations and lower costs. I wrote a textbook about it. But those systems have not been used vigorously for a while and some slack has got into the system. We can get better value for money but it has to be done with a scalpel not an axe.

Indeed, from what I read in the news it seems that the National party is big on promises but will be small on action. All these promises of tax cuts - so where is the policy?

ACT already has a policy out there - 15% tax for income up to 38,000 a year, and 25% for anything above that. And the Treasury estimates between 1% and 1.5% extra growth would be achieved through the introduction of this policy.

Don Brash is shackled by his conservo hippies. Fingers crossed that ACT can get itself into kingmaker position ahead of Winston's racist bunch

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