This time from Frogblog:
Foreign investment is driving up the price of rural land to an extent that it is unaffordable for many would-be New Zealand farmers to own their own farms
Translation: Foreign investors are willing to pay at a higher level than is appropriate given the rate of return of the land for domestic land owners – so allowing them to buy the land increases wealth.
I agree with this – but not so much with the “tone” Frogblog is giving the issue.
High land prices are driving farmers to make the maximum possible return from their land through ecologically unsustainable farming practices
Translation: Farmers are dumb and will only maximise their revenue stream when they are struggling.
I don’t really agree with this – there could be a “competition issue” but in my experience farmers aren’t “dumb”. Furthermore, even if we do believe there are negative externalities from farmers farming practices – shouldn’t we find a way of making them pay for the external cost of their actions. Banning voluntary trade with people who aren’t “New Zealanders” is insanely, well, xenophobic.
Update: Turns out you can support xenophobia under the guise of democracy – as long as it isn’t actual democracy, but what the party believes society actually wants. I am glad I have people here to explain this to me …