Roger Douglas, the economy, and an option for reform

croaking cassandra

I went along yesterday to a Treasury guest lecture, to hear from one of great figures in the history of New Zealand economic policymaking, Sir Roger Douglas, and his co-author Auckland University economics professor Robert MacCulloch.   Their presentation was based on a recent paper proposing a wholesale reshaping of New Zealand’s tax and welfare system.  I’ll get back to that.

Roger Douglas is 79 now, and if his voice is weaker than it was once way, his passion for a better New Zealand is as clear as ever.   In his brief remarks, there was more evidence of a passionate desire to do stuff that would make for a more prosperous, and fairer, New Zealand than one is likely to hear from our current crop of political leaders in an entire election campaign.

I very much liked the fact that they started their lecture with a chart of real…

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