I just want to say at the start I have full respect for people who want to discuss these important issues, including the use of data. However, after reading his post I think he may have oversold his claim. Don’t get me wrong, what he posted was interesting – if you go over to his post you will see a graph that shows aggregate taxable income for three groups – those being taxed on $150k a year, those being taxed on $100-$150k a year, and those being taxed on less than $100k.
I do not have the data sadly, but I have some reservations stemming from what I see in the post. For some reason he is only quoted gains since 2010/11 – ignoring the whitewash for high income earners that occurred in 2009/10 due to the global financial crisis. Furthermore, the income changes he quotes are biased (to the point that they aren’t representative of household income at all) in two ways:Update: Rob has re-evaluated the data and changed his interpretation of what it is saying, he has also blogged saying so – full respect for that. His intent, of going through the data to try and figure out what is going on with policy relevant issues is admirable – and it is good that there is this blogging format where we can work through data and interpretation online. With income inequality getting a bigger focus, there is going to be a lot more writing across New Zealand sites on this issues in the coming year. For those who aren’t interested, the internet is a big place