The annual Rich List was published this week, showing that the super wealthy in NZ had increased their worth by 20%.
The National Business Review, which publishes this list, says Kiwis should celebrate this event rather than be envious and jealous of its increase in wealth.
Every report I have seen in the last 10 years places NZ in the top four OECD countries in terms of a free market and freedom to conduct business, with a judiciary and Parliament that backs it with the force of law.
Most of the places where the rich listers operate have significant regulation and huge taxes. The fact is, the richer you get, the less tax you pay. You then migrate to a larger economy where you are not super rich but very rich. You can hide among the pack offshore, whereas over here we know you, your kids, where they go to school and what you and they get up to. It's called being a Kiwi and most don't like it.
A lack of regulation helped a number on this list to increase their wealth at the expense of the wage and salary earner. The destruction of ethics and standards in the name of profit brought our construction industry to its knees over leaky buildings.
Thousands of millions of dollars have been taken out of the financial markets because there was no regulation.
The ability of our sharemarket to attract new investment was hammered by the rorts of the late 1980s. Wherever we have deregulated, this nation has paid a heavy price.
When you look at the rich listers you can divide them into those who are patriotic investors and those who are New Zealanders in name but live elsewhere.
The only reason they return home is to pillage another asset at a low price and flog it off at a vast profit to some foreign owner.
They do not add value to the country. I have a problem when wealth made here adds no value to this country, produces no quality jobs and adds no value to raw products being shipped offshore.
The New Zealander who does this received a free Kiwi education, access to all the power brokers in this country and could buy or build large monopoly interests.
That they retain a NZ passport to visit the homeland that made them but then continue to deride us over being backwater types who regulate them too much is a disgrace. We all know who the international cast-offs are who add no value to their homeland. Equally, we know who on the rich list has added value to NZ. There is a big difference.
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