A long, long time ago, in 1890, the Federation Conference was held in Melbourne. Politicians from the 6 Australian Colonies and New Zealand got together to discuss creating a Federation, a Common Wealth.
It came to pass that the 6 colonies got together to form Australia, but New Zealand decided to sit it out.
He is a photo from the 1890 conference. The fellow, standing second from the left, the one with the stand out light suit, was New Zealand’s representative, Captain Russell MP, Colonial Secretary. The fourth fella standing from the left, with the white bushy beard was Sir Henry Parkes.
Now, thanks to Judith Sloan’s reference in one of her earlier posts, I now regularly read the blog of Dan Mitchell from the Cato Institute. In his latest post, Mitchell writes about the 40 year economic transformation of New Zealand.
Cats can read it for themselves, but I just wanted to highlight Mitchell quoting Maurice McTigue, a former New Zealand parliamentarian and Minister. If anyone happens to know the direct email’s of Australia’s Prime Minister and/or Treasurer, perhaps they might forward either this or the Mitchell post. Perhaps also the Ministers for Health, Education and Industrial Policy (ie Pyne). This is McTigue talking about New Zealand’s program of shrinking the size of government:
When we started this process with the Department of Transportation, it had 5,600 employees. When we finished, it had 53. When we started with the Forest Service, it had 17,000 employees. When we finished, it had 17. When we applied it to the Ministry of Works, it had 28,000 employees. I used to be Minister of Works, and ended up being the only employee.
This is McTigue talking about privatisations:
…we sold off telecommunications, airlines, irrigation schemes, computing services, government printing offices, insurance companies, banks, securities, mortgages, railways, bus services, hotels, shipping lines, agricultural advisory services, etc. In the main, when we sold those things off, their productivity went up and the cost of their services went down, translating into major gains for the economy.