Blog description.

Accentuating the Liberal in Classical Liberal: Advocating Ascendency of the Individual & a Politick & Literature to Fight the Rise & Rise of the Tax Surveillance State. 'Illigitum non carborundum'.

Liberty and freedom are two proud words that have been executed from the political lexicon: they were frog marched and stood before a wall of blank minds, then forcibly blindfolded, and shot, with the whimpering staccato of ‘equality’ and ‘fairness’ resounding over and over. And not only did this atrocity go unreported by journalists in the mainstream media, they were in the firing squad.

The premise of this blog is simple: the Soviets thought they had equality, and welfare from cradle to grave, until the illusory free lunch of redistribution took its inevitable course, and cost them everything they had. First to go was their privacy, after that their freedom, then on being ground down to an equality of poverty only, for many of them their lives as they tried to escape a life behind the Iron Curtain. In the state-enforced common good, was found only slavery to the prison of each other's mind; instead of the caring state, they had imposed the surveillance state to keep them in line. So why are we accumulating a national debt to build the slave state again in the West? Where is the contrarian, uncomfortable literature to put the state experiment finally to rest?

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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Horror Files: StudyLink’s Definition of Income. Students, Debt, Keynes ...

Sitting in a grey, dimly lit roomful of tax (stereo)types at the Timaru TEO 2015 tax updater course last week, a topic came up which caused as much rebellion rumination as I’ve seen; alarming, indeed, to witness the ordered world of double-entry sundered so outrageously with the unsightly uncrinkling of bowed necks and a vigourous nodding of balding heads raised in surprise over document filled desks attesting to lives lost amongst Section, (Subsection), and (Clause; (nested sub-clause)), and the unspoken bored angst of wrong career turns and stunted inner lives. Noting I don’t use a word like ‘vigourous’ of such a gathering lightly. Or stunted. Indeed, it was a matter of such extreme emotion that the course convenor rashly rushed (blasphemy given this context) to judgement of the perpetrator: ‘stupid’.

Regardless of your view on the state in education, and mine is as dimly lit as that room was, students have an entitlement – that’s the contract for their parents paying tax and their own futures doing so - to an allowance which abates according to how much their parents earn. The problem is some of the most deserving of their entitlement are being refused or abated in their allowances due solely to StudyLink’s incompetence in not being able to grasp some basic concepts about the nature of income.

In defiance of accounting definition and any category of good sense, StudyLink class a businessperson/couple’s drawings in excess of their income for a year, and thus loan drawdowns to cover drawings if the owners have no savings, as income.

For example:

Business couple X are struggling: over the year their business only generated a net profit, that is, gross taxable income (akin to a gross wage), of $30,000. Because their personal outgoings were higher than that - paying the mortgage on their house, tax payments on the previous year’s income which was higher, plus provisional tax for current year, also two of their three children still at high school with books, uniforms and school camps to provide for, and extraneous unexpected dental and medical expenses over the year - they had to extract drawings from their business of $40,000. Of course that was not possible out of income, and as they had no savings, the excess $10,000 funds were supplied via their bank overdraft. So at the end of the year they are that much more in debt than at the beginning.

The problem for their third child applying for an allowance to complete her first year of tertiary study, is StudyLink's equation here is parental income equals the $40,000 drawings, not the $30,000 income earned from their business: apparently their additional debt makes them better off than before they drew it down.

In confirmation of this fact, the last StudyLink officer I talked to several weeks ago had rung to ask me if the parents concerned in that case had drawn down any loans over the year, intending to increase their parental income by such new loans. I told the officer this was ludicrous, ‘what the hell was she thinking’ then asked if she had felt rich with a surplus of income the year she pulled down her mortgage … alas, she was renting.

I no longer know how many ways in which to write how fatuous and wrong-headed this is. Albeit I’m willing to admit what a wonderful world it would signify.

Below is one of the most expensive cars money, or love, can buy; it’s called a Maserati.

It’s getting to the stage only $600,000+ incomed and salaried bureaucrats, lawyers and Kim Kardashian can afford them unfortunately, although, in StudyLink’s fantasy world I could, in theory, buy one, and none of that old-time having to chore away at the day job for years first, foregoing current pleasures to save for future goals, because according to StudyLink debt is income, therefore buying the Maserati creates the income required for the purchase.

Brilliant! Who says our bureaucracies aren’t innovative.

What a pity StudyLink’s policy in no way connects with reality. Worse, even more so than the frustration of dealing with ACC, where after the final internal injustice victims at least have recourse to the district court, there doesn’t appear to be a review process for StudyLink decisions. It's impossible to go outside StudyLink to get an independent, knowledgeable, oversight on falsehoods such as this which parents and students are having enforced on them, which will be ensuring some of the most deserving families Parliament meant to have student allowances, will not be.

Although there’s an even funnier twist in the tail of my sorry tale. Essentially, to continue the fantastical theme, this deluded free-lunchism based on an orgy of debt – and the assumption must be on it being income it doesn’t need repaying, (that’s certainly where the Greek socialist Finance Minister is heading toward) - is the basis our Western command economies have been largely managed on for some decades, after the political class have been convinced by that socialist fraud JM Keynes they are the answer to all societal ills. While destroying our literature and arts as a culture of individualistic resistance to unbridled state power, Keynes was at the same time preaching the Big State to those loving the notion of the power to exact it on us, conceiving of economies not as complex structures based on human ingenuity, needs, desires, and voluntary transactions, but a simpleton’s machine with levers that can be manipulated by our all-knowing simpletons in the Fortress of Legislation and Central Banks, while turning the screw to extract taxes to fill the intellectual deficit of fiat money and irresponsible state spending and growth. That’s how the West has become yet another cage, because you can’t live free of your economic self, and it explains the debt leveraged civilised human calamity being wrought, again. We are not the generations living at the peak of a Western Civilisation that was built on self-reliance, freedom and capitalism: we are the generations living in the ruins of it, waiting for the next crony tyrannies which are already bred and well learned in their evil craft of domination and surveillance over my volition.

So, StudyLink warns us of the end of the civilised world: unsurprising. Fortunate the world has this blog. Off to buy my Maserati and a holiday in Greece: see you in debtors court.


  1. Pounding away at an organisation that cannot grasp what you say. Reminds me of the movie 'Idiocracy'.