Rogernomics in NZ

Roger Douglas writes about the reforms and deregulation that he achieved on a broad front in NZ in the 1980s under a Labor Government. He missed out the labour market. This was addressed by Ruth Richardson in the Conservative government which followed Labor but they made some other mistakes including the introduction of proportional representation.

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10 Responses to Rogernomics in NZ

  1. DM OF WA

    Looking back it seems astonishing that a government like the Lange/Douglas one could ever have been in power in NZ. The eighties was a magical, exciting time for the right: Thatcher, Reagan, small government, laissez-faire capitalism, individual liberty, anti-communism, greed is good! I suppose my nostalgia for the eighties is how the Left remembers the sixties.

  2. Spring is coming

    V good article.

    I recall as a child my father was a Labor party member and he had myself and my four brothers walking the neighbourhood delivering Roger Douglas flyers for our local electorate. That was the 70s.
    My father was astounded when RD started delivering his reforms. Astounded or angry I was never sure.

  3. Dr Fred Lenin

    Don’t know what kiwi polliemuppets are like,but ours could do with a bloody good Rogering ]
    Wonder if it would wake them up ?

  4. Dr Fred Lenin

    In the building industry we used to have fun with the Lange names,he called it long, so a flange became a flongy ,a change in plan became a Chong’s and dogs were subject to Mongy ,another pretentious leftist prat .

  5. Roger did a lot of good for NZ. But imagine a Bill Shorten or John McDonnell in power and applying Roger’s principles to get their reforms through. Calamity.

  6. Craig Mc

    Don’t fret, Princess Dingbat will undo all that soon.

  7. John Bayley

    Not many people remember that these days, but New Zealand in the early 80s was on the verge of bankruptcy, about to have to go begging to the IMF for a bail-out. They had an incredibly protected, massively overregulated economy and were rightly known as the South Pacific Soviet.

    NZ Labour, when taking over from Muldoon’s (of the ‘your average Joe would not know a budget deficit if he fell over it’ fame) Nationals had little choice but take on harsh reforms.

    I recommend to everyone – if you can find it, that is – Douglas’ book ‘Unfinished Business’. One can only marvel what he may have been able to turn NZ into should Lange, the PM of the day, not chickened out and sacked him.

    He did, for example, plan for gradual reduction of income taxes to zero and was wont of saying that he wanted to ‘attain left-wing outcomes by right-wing means’.

    Douglas was a true conviction politician with an oustanding vision, betrayed by his party in the end. He went on to set up the libertarian ACT (Association of Consumers and Taxpayers), but that party never achieved what they had set out to do. Clearly, not many people reward good government and/or the promise to being left to their own devices, rather than be given free sh*t at someone else’s expense.

    As evidenced again very recently by their kicking out an outstanding National government and voting in their very own ‘Kevin Rudd in skirts’.

    Mind you, the fact that it was Labour in NZ who undertook those reforms perhaps is a lesson for Australia: The country will need to him rock bottom before changes will be forced to be put in place by whoever happens to govern at the time.

  8. John Bayley

    That was of course meant to say ‘The country will need to hit rock bottom.

  9. Rafe Champion

    Thanks John that is the kind of blurb I wanted to write in my original post but did not have time to do.

  10. Roger

    Clearly, not many people reward good government and/or the promise to being left to their own devices, rather than be given free sh*t at someone else’s expense.

    de Tocqueville identified this as the Achilles heel of states with the universal franchise. The impact in Australia is compounded by compulsory voting.

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