Why did Jacinda walk away from CGT?

Photoshopped image credit: Boondecker

All is not well in the camps of the left, as they try to fathom why Jacinda walked away from CGT. Most left-leaning people wanted the tax badly, believing it would have been a great way to sock it to the rich. They also claim that it is the only way to solve child poverty and climate change and put a man on Jupiter. Again I say this, but as the promise was that any revenue from CGT would be redistributed, probably in the form of tax cuts, it would have done nothing to solve child poverty or climate change. But there you have it. There are none so blind as a leftie on a crusade. Oops… not allowed to use that word any more.

Barry Soper has a different angle on this, however. He believes that, had Jacinda not axed the tax as she did, she would have faced a mutiny in her government. quote.

There was a very real chance of mutiny on the Beehive barque which forced the captain for the second time to make a contradictory call.

But it was essential to keep all hands on deck, without them she knew they’d all sink without lifebuoys.

One of the deckhands though has been left clinging to a lifeline that has become perilously frayed. end quote.

Let’s face it. Jacinda wanted the tax. She said so right from the day she became Labour leader. Pragmatism, or listening to the people, just never entered her head. CGT was going to happen.

And then it didn’t. quote.

The first captain’s call, her description, came from Jacinda Ardern who not long after she got her stripes from Andrew Little put a capital gains tax back on the agenda, saying there’d be one in the first term of her Government.

The election campaign was almost derailed by the call and she was forced to shelve it until after the next election.

The second call came as she realised there was no way she’d get a tax on capital gains across the line, and if she pressed ahead with it, there’d be a mutiny.

Leading it would most certainly have been Winston Peters who has said right from the start we already have a capital gains tax, the bright- line test which taxes rental properties if they’re sold within five years of purchase. end quote.

Fair enough, but this leaves so many delicious assets untaxed… the bach… the business… lifestyle blocks… farms… quote.

Left flailing around in the swirling political maelstrom is the Greens co-leader James Shaw who once said the Government doesn’t deserve to be re-elected if it doesn’t introduce the tax on capital.

Now he’s lamely saying he’d prefer to work with this Government than a National one. end quote.

Digital Image credit: Luke

Another dead rat for Shaw to swallow. He must adore the taste of rat by now. quote.

The lead-up to what is a colossal back down by Labour was a schmozzle [sic], not all that unusual for this administration.

Their two associate Finance Ministers, one of them Stuart Nash whose [sic] in charge of revenue and the other David Parker, seemed out of the loop or were simply clumsy in trying to quell speculation that a decision was imminent.
Yesterday Nash, in his regular weekly slot with Newstalkzb, repeatedly said there’d be a decision at the end of the month and it was only the 17th.
And Parker said Cabinet may have discussed it on Monday but there were no decisions. end quote.

Sounds like the usual shambles with this government. No one knows what anyone else is doing. Nothing new there. quote.

Still to back away from the capital gains tax, and the promise by Ardern never to promote it again, and despite the political capital that has been sacrificed on the way, the decision is for Labour the only one it could have taken.

The alternative was to effectively have tax as a referendum at the next election, and Labour should know by now, that’s a sure fire loser.

A newspaper. end quote.

Listening to Grant Robertson talking to Guyon Espiner yesterday, he implied that the coalition would have broken apart if CGT had not been axed. It sounds as if Winston gave an ultimatum… and Jacinda found herself on a hiding to nothing.

There has been talk of a snap election, with Jacinda banking all the political capital that she earned over the Christchurch massacre, but it would still have been a risk. Her support base may have backed her call for CGT, but as we all know, that will not win her an election. It didn’t in 2017. Winston was the one to anoint her then, and losing his support could have been disastrous for this government.

Of course in politics, you can never win. Now her own support base is baying for blood. I’m sure Jacinda will spend the Easter weekend polishing her CV for an application for a post at the UN. Then she won’t have to worry her head about silly things like taxation policy. I’m sure she’d much prefer that.