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The media seems to be writing to a theme and the theme is "Rats leaving the sinking ship".
Over the past few weeks there have been a string of stories about high profile and high net wealth New Zealanders leaving New Zealand because the place has apparently lost its vibe and energy. It's election year and a tactic to get rid of the Government is to prove that the country has gone to wrack and ruin
I hate the tactic. It's like we had to burn the village to save it.
Marc Ellis kicked it off. He made his fortune in professional sport, the media and the orange juice business. He's semi retired. He's relocating to Puglia in Italy where the property prices are cheap as chips, unlike New Zealand.
He's right on that. Puglia is the heel of the boot of Italy. Its main industry is olive oil, that has seen technology strip the work force so there are empty houses galore in an area with loads of beaches. He's a rich man going to live in a poor place
Also remember that Italy's tax rates are higher. Its GDP growth is slower. Central Government debt is 4 times higher per capita and the mafia still pull the strings.
But despite all that he still thinks it's better than New Zealand
I found the whole thing a bit disingenuous. He's got an Italian wife and Italian kids and they want to spend some time learning the language and seeing her family. It makes sense that they'd want to go home. But I don't see why he had to kick the country that made his fame and fortune as he went out the door.
Ben Cook the property developer made the same headlines. He' selling up his 100 million dollar property portfolio and moving to Australia, prompting headlines suggesting New Zealand is rubbish. But Ben Cook said he just likes Sydney now his kids are grown up and he still loves New Zealand and that it's the best place for lifestyle and the outdoors.
I think it's great for the country that Ben Cook is selling up. It gives a new generation a chance at the assets and to move forward. People who have had success in New Zealand are keen to have a crack at bigger markets. That's what made them rich in the first place
And finally there's Tamzyn Adding who's taking her design business to Brisbane. But her reasons were different. She doesn't blame the government. She blames business people. She reckons she's landed more work in Brisbane in 5 weeks than she got in 5 years in New Zealand because the business people have a better attitude.
She calls New Zealand an old boys club where no-one wants to try something new. She's sick of business people constantly bagging the country and creating a toxic environment.
And there's the nub of it. We've gone to sleep and prefer moaning about it rather than doing something about it. The Koru Club is one big depression party with everyone moaning about how bad we are and making empty threats to leave the country if Labour gets back in again.
We're not nearly as bad as so many make us out to be, but then again we're not nearly as good as Labour pretends we are. But let's all be a little positive.
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