'Buying NZ Property – Download the free sample readings!

NZ presents some of the most alluring property in the Western World; particularly given the greater easy of residency, the low cost of property, and the liveability of the country. In addition, there is no capital gains tax, transfer taxes, VAT/GST or wealth taxes in NZ, so rest assured that NZ property is tax-effective! Learn more now!

New Zealand Property Report 2010 - Download the table of contents or buy this 180-page report at our online store for just $US19.95.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

New Zealand: Where the hell are you?

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NZ is in the midst of a tourist 'recession' like a great many other places in the world. Going against the trend is a difficult task when:
1. Your dollar is relatively strong because of high commodity prices
2. Your country is relatively isolated
3. Your economy is so small; that no one knows you

Basically, if you ask an Asian who hasn't had some reason for going to NZ, what and where is NZ, they will not know little about the country. There is just nothing to get NZ press coverage. Asia is US-centric, if not partially British-EU interested, its hard to get on the radar. Even Australia struggles in this respect, but Australia has a bigger immigration program with Asia, and its prosperity is well-understood. 
So back to NZ. Given the context, Air Zealand is focusing its attention on the Australian market. Good strategy. First off the bat, I must say that Air NZ is an excellent airline. I don't bother flying them for trans-Pacific flights because of their higher price, but I might fly with them if I was taking a long-haul flight. There is a big difference in service between them and the discount Australian/Singaporean/Malaysian airlines. i.e. Jetstar, Pacific Blue, Tiger Airways. Having said that, Scoot is impressive at its current entry prices...though its at a marketing stage, so get those discount prices whilst they last, as they will double eventually. 

NZ is currently attacking criticism of NZ head-on with its current campaign 'Kiwi Sceptics'. You have to question such a campaign because it actually gives credence to the view that NZ is a boring uncultured place to holiday. They actually make the point themselves - as a criticism they are intent on changing. The question is: Is this the way to turn around such an argument? 
Because Air NZ is positing that a 'thumbs up' for NZ from five recognised Australians is going to countenance the generalised view of thousands that NZ is the 'arse end of the world'; that it lacks culture. If you were going to change perceptions, would you launch that type of campaign? I wouldn't. First thing I would do is actually make a substantive change. NZ (or Air NZ) has not done that, so what is going to make a difference. Oh, the change is to blame the customer. That's right Australia. You're not going to NZ because you are ignorant hicks. That's the way to sell tourism in NZ. It is no secret that NZ Tourism has come under a lot of criticism. These government agencies are often criticised for their advertising campaigns; sometimes which fall flat on their feet, i.e. NZ Pure is a celebrated example; Australia's 'Where the Hell Are You' was a brush fire that ran out of control. 
The problem as I see it is that NZ is a great place to visit for a holiday; the problem is that its problematic when you attempt to live there. Why? Well, unless you live on the cold South Island or Millionairesville in Auckland, then you are going to experience crime or a lack of culture, if not both. This does not stop Air NZ from flying high-profile people over to NZ and cherry-picking the best spots. Yes, if you have thousands of dollars for a tour package or a great deal of NZ knowledge, then you can have a great holiday experience. But the negativity arising from NZ I suggest comes from the people who are living there; not the high-end tourists who stay for a week, who don't see any lack of depth to the market, because they don't spend enough time there. NZ seriously lacks demand, it has huge social problems, and a government lacking skills to deal with them. i.e. economic rationalists or repressed Conservatives. 

NZ has culture; it just does not have the depth of culture and population to make the place a dynamic cultural market. Its akin to looking for needles in a haystack. Yep, you get excited when you find the diamond, but you lament the futile search in between.

My solution is to change the government; for government to change, then placing a sign at Auckland and Christchurch saying "Under new management". Other than that, maybe you just accept you only had a 1-2 week fly-n-drive in you....and move to Australia yourself. No shame in that! All it takes in an apology.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

They say 'crime doesn't pay'

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The adage that 'crime doesn't pay' is a popular one for movie sets; but what if 'crime is the only thing that pays' for a person living in a country with no opportunities. What if the country is NZ - a western country with no growth prospects - at least not until someone reforms autocratic government or discovers oil.
Consider the fate of Michael Thomas Feeney, of Waverley, New Zealand. I don't know Michael; I do not know the full context of his life, nor even a lot of it. But living in small-town Waverley strikes me as the best place to be if you want to position yourself for political reform or the discovery of oil (with existing oil & gas fields) up the road. 
Michael escaped a gaol sentence for break & enter. The judge said of him that, despite his 85-odd convictions over his life, that he had a good work ethic. That is important. But more important is to ask whether he had any prospects for anything else under this political system. A political system which:
1. Spurns investment by placing high costs upon business and undermines investment.
2. Spurns population growth because it does not want to redefine the nation's values; which are changing anyway because the government cannot stop the brain drain. 
3. Has allowed extortion to dominate economic activity because when there is no growth, pretty soon people  start eating the carcasses of their neighbours. Not exactly what Jesus meant by 'Love Thy Neighbour', but hell, Jesus got a lot of things wrong, so lets not speak of him any more. 
4. Facilitates and legitimatises taxation or the theft of wealth, for its political masters and aligned interests. Is not this government (along with its 'counterparts', who are fully complicit in sanctioning such slavery, except the ACT Party)....are they not a bad role model?

Did Michael take an easy path? I think so...if stealing wealth is 'easy'. But since when is hardship a value. This is of course a Christian 'virtue', i.e. That notion that there is nobility or heroism in sacrifice. I don't think so. Life is supposed to be easy; and the challenge for any life is to make it easy in the long run. I use my education to make more money than you can, faster than you can. I've made 3200% in 3 years on one stock; almost made 6800% in 3 months on another stock (if the company disclosed properly). The paradigm of struggling for wealth is a paradigm borne out of British subjugation. Life should be easy, and its only hard because of the extortionists in power who make it hard. Our zero growth will not sustain lives, so in a system that systematically mistreats people and perverts people, I expect people to struggle. I do not expect heroism from Michael, because I think the conditions of his life have not allowed him to be anything more than he is. I do not expect him to succeed because the conditions for life need to be conducive for survival, and in high-cost NZ, they are scarcely that. 

I am pleased that Judge David Cameron in the Wanganui District Court gave him the empathetic sentence that he did. Unfortunately, unless such judges are willing to challenge the system, then we are not going to see any change. We need judges to challenge the system, then not fall on their sword. i.e. Judge David Harvey recently stepped down from his role as a judge after making accusations against the United States government. Apparently there is implied bias in having a certain view about the USA. This is silly! Silly that he was sanctioned by some, silly if he chose to step down, or was asked to. The judiciary should be about evidence, and not appearances. Most people would accept that the USA does inappropriate things. Why should a judge reproach himself from making judgements; as that is what judges are deemed specialists at doing. I personally would like to see judges more critical of governments....and I think we are starting to see that. 
Unless judges or others are prepared to, or able to intellectually engage with these people, then there is no hope of anyone changing, Michael included. Perhaps Michael might apply his mind more if he lived in a social  system with actually validated intellectual discourse. Read the comments on Wanganui Chronicle, and you will find intellectual capacity sadly scarce. Why? Well, that is a reflection of the education system. From the National Party and ACT, we are likely to see a charter school system. The problem is that its a recipe for a change in ownership with no expectation of greater intellectual standards. The focus is on ownership or 'opportunity', not upon the mind. The notion that opportunity springs eternal from privatisation strikes me as 'causeless' or 'baseless' hoping. Even if private enterprise gets it 'right', that will only mean that its better than the public school system. It does not need to be so good as to be exceptional; just better than a bad system. i.e. Economic relativism; a close cousin of moral relativism, except prices are equated at the margin. These private schools don't even have to be good, they will create jobs and profits just by creating the illusion of better education. i.e. Employers will employ you because you went to a private school; because they are impressed by your grander sporting facilities. All the time, forgetting the mind. Why? Because the other 96% of schools certainly don't celebrate intellectual capacity. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Immigrating to New Zealand

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I have dealt with a lot of Asians over the years; had relationships with them, met them on planes, in their own countries, had relationships with them. A great number of them want to travel abroad. A great number of them are ignorant about the journey upon which they will embark. Their ignorance stems from the fact:
1. They have little knowledge of Western society - the failings of their schools perhaps, or simply because there are many countries, and assumptions are likely about countries and opportunities.
2. They are misled by migration agents/brokers and friends, whose context is often very different. We all want to offer encouragement, but sometimes we do it in half-measure, so people leave for a foreign nation, and end up disappointed. Migration agents make money by placing you in other countries, after which point, they have been paid, and you are poorly positioned to take legal action against them. They might not be well-regulated, because governments have protected themselves, and they care little about you.
3. Their qualifications not reecognised. A great many Asians have qualifications in their own country which are not recognised. This places them in a difficult situation in their host country. If you are Japanese or Korean, maybe you can get a job in the host country's major cities because there are many tourists from your home country. Otherwise, without high English standards or local degree, you will surely struggle to find job. Do you want to end up in a dead-end job selling trickets to tourists. You can do that in the developing world. 
4. Learning English - It is expensive to study in the West; they charge you a premium as a foreigner to get a 'gold plate' accredited degree, and then yon need to study a vocational course. Why bother? You are starting from behind, with a Western debt legacy. 
5. Find a partner - Maybe you hope to meet a Western guy/girl. The problem is that you will encounter a great many insincere partners who just want to have sex. A cultural distinction can be a point of interest however, but the question is whether the partners have identified the fundamental differences in their values. Soon they might be confronting an inter-racial custody battle for children, and you are at a disadvantage in a legal system you cannot afford, understand, or count upon for support. 
6. Finding a job - It can take years to find a job. Unless your vocation is in demand, it can take years, and even they they might prejudicially give you the low-challenge jobs, or maybe your education is not recognised or as good. So from the start, you seem to struggling with challenges that no one else has to contend with.
7. Support for immigrants is often lacking. The welfare system was not designed for you; you don't have the same support as 'locals', even though you pay taxes. Having said this, many Asian communities have community groups to support their local migrant population, and they are a great source of support. If they are strong, they can aid to ensure government policy is fair. 
8. Expensive services in the West. You will pay high rent in the West; with little hope of ever being able to afford a house given that they are sold at 10x annual earnings; and with your poor English, maybe it will take you 30 years to get a house, and you will pay 50% of your income in rent. Schooling is expensive, and maybe you need to support family at home. 

There is another element with NZ. Immigration is hard...but its harder in NZ because:
1. Levels of prejudice are high. NZ polls suggest that most NZ'ers do not want immigration. The reason is that they are sensitive to seeing their cultural values change. They likely their traditional English values. They were always an illusion; since they dishonestly kept the details of their dubious Christian lives from others, so we never knew the worst of it. This is not always bad. The fact that NZ'ers are prejudicial means that some go out of their way to show they are different, i.e. They will recommend you for jobs, whether you deserve it or not, and sometimes because you deserve it, and they want to try hard to accommodate you. Sometimes its because they pragmatically want more population in NZ. 
2. Low growth. In NZ there are not so many jobs, incomes are low by Western standards, and the population is small and isolated. People are asset-rich but income poor; particularly in those depopulating rural towns. The inflow of immigrants is scarcely high enough to offset the outflow of migrants each year, and some of those migrants are people who have migrated to NZ, and decided that matters in NZ are so bad that they want to go home. Surprisingly, its actually the people who are doing best in NZ who are the ones going abroad; usually to Australia, but often to their home countries, Singapore or the USA, where some also have relatives. Life is too hard in NZ; particularly if you have children. Crime is relatively high on the North Island, and property prices is high too. You might end up being a slave for another person's dream. Choose well! A late change of plans is expensive. Do you want to pay a 2nd set of costs to move again, and then have to make new friends, buy new furniture, start your career again; another set of visa application fees, twice has high as NZ (at least in Australia). You will come to feel like an economic slave. Think well before migrating. Many people go back home, losing a great deal of money on forex rates, currency conversion, opportunity costs, shipping. 

We all have a bitter taste about our own countries; their decline in values. Anywhere in the world looks better than our own place. Sometimes you need to fight for what you believe where your message is strongest - in your own country - making use of existing relationships. The most important things in life are best achieved in your home country:
1. Career
2. Relationships
3. Internal (housing) environment
4. External environment 
Only this last one is better in the West because of the legacy of prosperity. But the most important elements are best in your own country. If you want the best, find the best in your country; don't migrate to the ends of the earth; its a false dream; migrate to somewhere where you will be appreciated. i.e. Your big cities are rich in culture and prosperity, and they will rapidly emerge. Within a few decades you will be able to holiday in the West, and you might not even want to. 

'Buying NZ Property – Download the free sample readings!

NZ presents some of the most alluring property in the Western World; particularly given the greater easy of residency, the low cost of property, and the liveability of the country. In addition, there is no capital gains tax, transfer taxes, VAT/GST or wealth taxes in NZ, so rest assured that NZ property is tax-effective! Learn more now!

New Zealand Property Report 2010 - Download the table of contents or buy this 180-page report at our online store for just $US19.95.

Japan Foreclosed Property 2015-2016 - Buy this 5th edition report!

Over the years, this ebook has been enhanced with additional research to offer a comprehensive appraisal of the Japanese foreclosed property market, as well as offering economic and industry analysis. The author travels to Japan regularly to keep abreast of the local market conditions, and has purchased several foreclosed properties, as well as bidding on others. Japan is one of the few markets offering high-yielding property investment opportunities. Contrary to the 'rural depopulation' scepticism, the urban centres are growing, and they have always been a magnet for expatriates in Asia. Japan is a place where expats, investors (big or small) can make highly profitable real estate investments. Japan is a large market, with a plethora of cheap properties up for tender by the courts. Few other Western nations offer such cheap property so close to major infrastructure. Japan is unique in this respect, and it offers such a different life experience, which also makes it special. There is a plethora of property is depopulating rural areas, however there are fortnightly tenders offering plenty of property in Japan's cities as well. I bought a dormitory 1hr from Tokyo for just $US30,000.
You can view foreclosed properties listed for as little as $US10,000 in Japan thanks to depopulation and a culture that is geared towards working for the state. I bought foreclosed properties in Japan and now I reveal all in our expanded 350+page report. The information you need to know, strategies to apply, where to get help, and the tools to use. We even help you avoid the tsunami and nuclear risks since I was a geologist/mining finance analyst in a past life. Check out the "feedback" in our blog for stories of success by customers of our previous reports.

Download Table of Contents here.