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Another shaming poverty report for the government to ignore

Written By: - Date published: 12:07 pm, May 31st, 2012 - 51 comments
Categories: class war, poverty - Tags: , ,

In the full knowledge that we’ve written about such reports before, and in the dreadful expectation that we’ll be writing about them again, here is yet another shaming report on poverty in NZ:

NZ poverty result ‘appalling’ – Labour

… The report, Measuring Child Poverty, ranks New Zealand 20th out of 35 OECD countries based on the percentage of children living in relative poverty. That means children living in a household where disposable income is less than 50 per cent of the national median income.

Unicef said 11.7 percent of New Zealand children were living in relative poverty – ranking it behind countries including Australia and much of the EU. Iceland was the top-ranked country, on 4.7 percent. Below New Zealand were the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan and struggling EU economies including Greece, Spain and Portugal. …

Labour’s children spokeswoman Jacinda Ardern says New Zealand’s results are appalling. “An estimated 170,000 to 270,000 Kiwi children go without the basics and live in poor conditions,” she says.

Ms Ardern says Unicef had sent a very clear message that the wrong policy choices could have a profound impact on children and a country’s economic future. “Investing less than half of the OECD average on children’s early, and most critical years, proves this Government’s priorities are all wrong. “The Government can argue that we are in a recession and times are tough, but as the report card states, failure to protect children from poverty is one of the most costly mistakes a society can make.”

The UNICEF NZ summary and links to the full report are here.

Let’s be clear. Poverty (and inequality) were falling (albeit too slowly) under the last Labour government. Now they are on the rise again, in fact a Waikato University professor says that poverty is our biggest growth industry.

Before the last election Labour called for a cross party working group on poverty. Key turned the offer down. Here’s a prediction for you – the Nats will ignore this report too. They’re not particularly interested in the issue of kids in poverty.

51 comments on “Another shaming poverty report for the government to ignore”

  1. Peter Martin 1

    Ahem.

    The Hon Paula Bennet (Minister for Social Development) stated yesterday, in reply to a question from Jacinda Ardern , that there is ” not an official measure of poverty” and thus “as such you cannot give a number” regarding “How many children will be lifted out of poverty as a result of Budget 2012″

    So rather than focus on something that isn’t measured, officially…perhaps we could concern ourselves about how many Ministers received freebies to a rugby game…

    • fabregas4 1.1

      national Standards for reading and writing – no measure for child poverty – seems fair!

  2. prism 2

    The government just needs to apply itself to defining the poverty line but they have all preferred to fudge it so that real stats can’t be kept and compared with previous years. If they chose to follow those of another suitable country then we could compare to overseas stats as well. But that would be embarrassing. Better to indulge in the favourite sport of scapegoating – we all know if only everyone pulled up their socks we would all be well-off and so poverty is the fault of the individual and only comes under the purview of government when a baby dies and the matter can’t be squashed.

    It’s all part of the blame culture. Road accidents couldn’t be mitigated against at one time. No it was the individual’s fault, whatever and however it happened. Government doesn’t care about people in poverty any more than the road accident stats. Poverty is better because the stats aren’t there raising their embarrassing profile. Judgmentalism runs this country and stops initiative trialling of pilot policies and then full-scale adoption if successful, and thinking along practical lines with error-allowance planning for prevention of negative outcomes.

    • Dr Terry 2.1

      Very good and necessary comment, Prism. I think our country, by and large, is fearfully ignorant about what is happening (or, not happening).
      I hope everybody will well inform themselves. Be sure to refer to relevant reports on Google (or other internet sources). Well done, Ms Ardern!

      • bbfloyd 2.1.1

        well said prism…i fear though, that there will have to be rather a lot more “growing up” to be done before any sea change on the “me first” mentality currently afflicting society is buried deep enough to allow a social conscience to develop…

  3. …the wrong policy choices could have a profound impact on children and a country’s economic future.

    They certainly can. For instance, our policy choices of the last 30 years have encouraged people like [deleted, no named individuals thanks. -- r0b] and her various sperm donors to have lots of neglected foetal-alcohol-syndrome children, and discouraged people with an income and a sense of right and wrong from having any. Given that, how we got shitloads of kids living in poverty isn’t hard to figure out.

    • just saying 3.1

      http://www.thepoliticalscientist.org/?p=861

      Puddleglum’s excellent and informative blog on this issue rebuts much of your argument Psycho Milt.
      Do you have any actual evidence to back up your rather cruel sentiments?

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        That’s a great article by Puddleglum

        Making ‘long-acting’ contraception available may well sound good. But without solving the broader issue that makes the choice of early motherhood a ‘good choice’, at best it may be totally ineffective and, at worst, it may reduce the likelihood of young women experiencing one of the few positive aspects of life left to them.

        No, it’s not ‘breeding for a business‘.

        It’s more like taking the only lifeboat available – ‘breeding for survival‘.

        And that’s what it really boils down to. If we don’t change the circumstances that produce the need to breed for survival then contraception isn’t going to make a difference.

      • Psycho Milt 3.1.2

        It doesn’t rebut any of it, merely offers some explanations of the motivations of the people involved. Their motivations are irrelevant, other than in the sense that people who romanticise poverty can’t think about this subject except in terms of morality. Regardless , motivation is irrelevant – the question is whether govt policies are likely to increase or decrease the number of kids born into poverty, and for decades we’ve gone with increasing it.

        • fatty 3.1.2.1

          “the question is whether govt policies are likely to increase or decrease the number of kids born into poverty, and for decades we’ve gone with increasing it.”

          The answer is yes, our policies create our poverty, those policies have caused our kids to be born into poverty…they are low minimum wage, residual welfare and low taxes for the rich.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2.2

          Yes, the governments have gone with increasing poverty through implementing policies that took the wealth from the community and gave it to the rich through things like asset sales, tax cuts and other neo-liberal dogma.

          • Psycho Milt 3.1.2.2.1

            Well, yes, of course. Those are all factors. But the elephant in the room is, as the report describes, the fact that being born to a sole parent without an income is a major risk factor for growing up in poverty, and the proportion of NZ kids in that category has been increasing for decades – current figures are that 22% of babies will have their parent on a benefit by the time they’re a year old. High levels of child poverty is unsurprising under those circumstances, and a govt keen on addressing it would be looking at ways to lower that percentage or at the very least stop it increasing.

            • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2.2.1.1

              Poverty is a result of increasing productivity and capitalism. As productivity increases the capitalists take all the benefits and everyone else becomes worse off especially in a “free-market”. To change society so that people aren’t being born into poverty we need to change the distribution of the wealth in society. Essentially, we need to take the wealth from the rich, distribute it properly and then prevent such maldistribution from happening again.

        • just saying 3.1.2.3

          He provides evidence that government policy (I assume you mean the dpb) does not encourage poor young women to have babies.

          • Psycho Milt 3.1.2.3.1

            The stats disagree with his evidence. Also, govt economic policies that leave young women with no prospects other than a career as a taxpayer-funded producer of children destined to live in poverty are policies that encourage young women to have babies, aren’t they?

            • just saying 3.1.2.3.1.1

              The stats disagree with his evidence

              Correlation is not causation.

              I certainly agree that policies which leave poor young women with “no prospects” is a big factor.

              However I think you were referring to the dtb in your nasty and pejorative rant.
              And before you start up with your “romaniticising poverty” bollocks, I lived in poverty for more than ten years. I don’t look back with rose tinted glasses.

              Nor do I sit amidst the comfort of a lifetime of privilege, a long, long, way from the reality and look down my nose and pass judgement on what I can never understand and pass judgment, whilst patting myself on the back for my superior virtue.

              • I’m glad to hear that. This isn’t a moral issue, much as you appear to be trying to make it one.

                • fatty

                  Psycho Milt:
                  Perhaps you need to stop being a wannabe Peter Dunne and flop you dick on the table. You have had nothing worthwhile to say over your past few posts and have been meandering between individual responsibility and structural oppression….all the time assuming a John72-like moralistic attitude.

                  Individual responsibility:
                  “current figures are that 22% of babies will have their parent on a benefit by the time they’re a year old. High levels of child poverty is unsurprising under those circumstances, and a govt keen on addressing it would be looking at ways to lower that percentage or at the very least stop it increasing.”

                  structural oppression:
                  “govt economic policies that leave young women with no prospects other than a career as a taxpayer-funded producer of children destined to live in poverty are policies that encourage young women to have babies, aren’t they?”

                  Your passive aggressive argument is not only lame, it makes you look like a troll who is here to stir the porridge in the hope that someone might visit your blog. Try to have something useful to say, don’t be afraid to have an opinion. Peter Dunne is nothing to aspire to.

                  • I know this is a very difficult concept for many of this blog’s readers to grasp, but the reality-based community generally accepts there tend to be multiple causes for any particular social phenomenon. Consider for a moment the possibility that govt policies eradicating unskilled work or driving its pay so low that only migrant workers are willing to do it, and govt policies guaranteeing funding for any children you produce as long as you don’t have a job, might BOTH have played a part in increasing child poverty, and might BOTH be things it would make sense to change.

                    • McFlock

                            
                      Shite minimum wage and work opportunities create poverty regardless of income source.
                              
                      DPB alleviates the extreme poverty faced by many young people and their parents into only severe hardship. If severe hardship is viewed as a reward or incentive significant enough to encourage reproduction-for-money, you might want to look at the more extreme alternative and concentrate on fixing that. When that is fixed, even if it actually existed the problem of women having babies to get the DPB would be solved.
                           
                       

                    • fatty

                      “I know this is a very difficult concept for many of this blog’s readers to grasp, but the reality-based community generally accepts there tend to be multiple causes for any particular social phenomenon.”

                      Thank you Capitan Obvious for letting us know what the ‘reality-based community’ ‘generally tends’ to blah blah blah…

                      “might BOTH have played a part in increasing child poverty, and might BOTH be things it would make sense to change.”

                      Of course there are multiple ways we create poverty, nobody has said there is only one cause of poverty…again, you’ve danced around in Peter Dunne territory, given your opinion and stated basically nothing.

                      “Consider for a moment the possibility that govt policies eradicating unskilled work or driving its pay so low that only migrant workers are willing to do it, and govt policies guaranteeing funding for any children you produce as long as you don’t have a job”

                      Using the term “guaranteeing funding” to describe obtaining the DPB suggests a moralistic arrogance. DBP does not “fund” mothers and children, that’s a derogatory term and you should hang your head in shame for using it…the DPB provides, supports and protects them from structural oppression.
                      Charities get “funded”, not mothers and children. Before this greedy third way/neoliberal rhetoric became normalised, many mothers in NZ received the DPB because welfare was a universal right for the good of society. NZ did not “fund” John Key’s mother via a state house…NZ provided, supported and protected her when she needed it.
                      Your token acknowledgement of structural oppression becomes swallowed by your accusation of individual responsibility, as a result the statement goes nowhere and has nothing to offer…its a third way yawn-fest.
                      The reason you don’t understand some of the thinking on this blog is because many here don’t subscribe to radiolive logic…arguments built on individual blame will usually get called out.

                    • What you call stuff like “moralistic” and “blaming,” I call an unwillingness to romanticise this into a heroic struggle against oppression with the poor cast as the good guys. Social classes aren’t moral entities.

                      The DPB was intended to be as you describe it, ie support for people who needed it. However, it is also a source of funding: ie, if you don’t like or can’t get any of the jobs available, the govt will pay you to have children instead. To point out that increasing numbers of people have taken up that offer over the last few decades is hardly derogatory, it’s a statement of fact that says nothing about them as people. Likewise, if the govt leaves open various ways of hiding your income to avoid paying tax, we shouldn’t be surprised if increasing numbers of people avoid paying tax, and suggesting something should be done about it is neither moralistic nor blaming of the people involved.

                      Shite minimum wage and work opportunities create poverty regardless of income source.

                      Sure, but being born to a sole parent on a benefit is a major risk factor for childhood poverty, ie that particular parental income source is more likely to give you a childhood in poverty than other income sources. Attempting to pretend that’s not true doesn’t get us anywhere.

                    • McFlock

                      Circular, much? 
                           
                      Single parents have half the chance of being employed (not to mention the gender income gap if they do managed to get a job, given that most single parents are single mothers), and all the responsibility of raising a kid. 
                           
                      Being on a benefit by definition means one is poor, but less poor than one would be without the benefit. 
                             
                      So your conclusion is that it’s the benefit that causes child poverty. Colour me unimpressed.
                            
                      And how is the treatment of our children (and whether you even regard it as a social problem or strictly individual /Someone Else’s Problem issue) not a moral discussion? Surely the way we treat the poor is a basic moral dilemma, right up there with botty-banging and killing in self-defense?

                    • fatty

                      “Social classes aren’t moral entities.”

                      Depends what you mean by that…People within different social classes should not be essentialised as possessing certain morals…but its the creation and perpetuation of social classes that is morally problematic. We construct and reconstruct classes every 3 years when we vote. We choose to increase class inequality or reduce it based on who we vote for…and we choose who we vote for based on our morals.

                      “I call an unwillingness to romanticise this into a heroic struggle against oppression with the poor cast as the good guys.”

                      We all ‘romanticise’ things every day. You appear to ‘romanticise’ capitalism and individual responsibility…I ‘romanticise’ structural oppression. Be aware of your romanticising, because having an objective view is impossible

                      “To point out that increasing numbers of people have taken up that offer over the last few decades is hardly derogatory, it’s a statement of fact that says nothing about them as people. ”

                      True, its not derogatory to point out a statistic, I’m not sure who said that.
                      This is what I called derogatory… “DBP does not “fund” mothers and children, that’s a derogatory term and you should hang your head in shame for using it”.
                      Its the use of the loaded term “guaranteeing funding” that is derogatory.
                      A word is not just a word…a word like ‘funding’ can but used in many ways, all of which bring different meanings, you used it to demean and subjugate people who are on the DPB.
                      The word ‘black’ is used all the time in an inoffensive way…it can also be used negatively in an historical/racial way. The way you used the term “guaranteeing funding” did not, as you claim, say “nothing about them as people”…it said multiple things about people on the DPB. Don’t play dumb over semantics, you know how we can frame issues with different terminology…that is why you keep talking about ‘romanticising’.

                    • McFlock: you’d have an excellent point if the proportion of kids born to sole parents on a benefit had been stable the last few decades.

                      Fatty: “funding” is the appropriate term here. You may find it derogatory, but the fact is the govt is offering an income to people if they produce kids they can’t support, and an increasing number of people have taken the govt up on that offer and produced the requisite children. That is funding in a very real sense – the fact that you personally dislike the term is irrelevant.

                    • McFlock

                      Um, no – the proportion of children being born in poverty is a function of the number of NZers of reproductive age being born in poverty. The latter is getting worse, so more kids are born into poverty, and you blame the measures that alleviate that poverty.
                           
                      Addressing unemployment and the working poor in the first place would solve a problem that you have yet to demonstrate even exists. 

                    • fatty

                      “…“funding” is the appropriate term here…You may find it derogatory, the fact that you personally dislike the term is irrelevant”

                      You consider it an appropriate term because you ‘romanticise’ individual responsibility and you get sucked in by neoliberal discourse. I don’t, instead I ‘romanticise’ class inequality because I resent greed.
                      Neither of us are presenting the only objective ‘fact’, it is only you that is claiming ownership of ‘the fact’.
                      Your so called ‘facts’ are constructed within your neoliberal world because you assume our economic reality as the truth…it’s not, our economis system is constructed and so are your ‘facts’.
                      Its nothing to do with my personal dislike of the term…its to do with power relations, how welfare is framed in NZ, and our socio-economic structure.
                      My dislike of the term is as relevant and ‘factual’ as your desire to use the term, …its your neoliberal blinkers that make ‘funding’ an appropriate term. I don’t buy into the neoliberal fantasy. That’s why its derogatory to me, and acceptable to you.

                      …but the fact is the govt is offering an income to people if they produce kids they can’t support…”

                      Again, it’s one fact, its not the only way to frame welfare…To focus on that ‘fact’ you are using a neoliberal perspective which is based on greed.
                      I’d resist the individual responsibility framing of welfare. I’d frame welfare as a provision…people and children who are forced into poverty by an immoral economic system are being protected.
                      Depends on your morals.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    If you are a CEO, the incentive to work harder is a million dollar bonus.

                    If you are a beneficiary, the incentive to work harder is a kick in the guts.

                    Why the difference?

                  • Great – when I explain the obvious I get Fatty berating me for explaining the obvious, and when I don’t explain the obvious I get McFlock claiming I haven’t proved the obvious yet. It’s like a tag team.

                    The effect on child poverty of having an ever-increasing number of children born to sole parents on benefits doesn’t need me to prove it, we’ve got no shortage of govt agencies doing that, not to mention the report this post was about.

                    And yes, if we weren’t a capitalist society we wouldn’t have this problem. We’d have a bunch of different problems, but we wouldn’t have this particular one, you’re absolutely right. How that information serves any useful purpose isn’t clear, but I can’t fault you on its accuracy.

                    • fatty

                      “when I explain the obvious I get Fatty berating me for explaining the obvious”

                      You can waffle on about the obvious all day for all I care…but don’t twist and reinterpret my words to make it appear as if I didn’t know that “there tend to be multiple causes for any particular social phenomenon”.

                    • McFlock

                       

                      The effect on child poverty of having an ever-increasing number of children born to sole parents on benefits doesn’t need me to prove it, we’ve got no shortage of govt agencies doing that, not to mention the report this post was about.

                      I’m saying that you’ve seen a correlation and decided arbitrarily that one is the significant cause of another.
                             
                      The problem with “child poverty” is “poverty”, not the child.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  This isn’t a moral issue, much as you appear to be trying to make it one.

                  Yes it is. People should not be living in poverty and people only option shouldn’t be to become poverty stricken breeders. The fact that we have this is because we’ve made a moral judgement that some people should be far better off.

            • Puddleglum 3.1.2.3.1.2

              Hi Psycho Milt,

              Statistics tell us very little about causal processes, but (if understood carefully) they indicate good places to look and good questions to ask on the way (to work out what the statistics might mean). But that’s a difficult skill (and I’m no better at it than anyone else).

              Which stats, in particular, provide evidence that the DPB encourages young women to have children? (BTW, ‘encouragement’ is an influence on motivation – the whole notion of ‘incentives’ is incorporated into motivation theory. So maybe you do think that motivation is relevant to the issue?)

              It’s a bit wordy, but you might like to read this article, particularly its description of how statistics can be used deceptively on this issue (e.g., Charles’ Murray’s perfectly correct statistics about how illegitimate births amongst African Americans were becoming an increasing proportion of births in that community – guess how that happens? Availability of welfare?)

              And here’s something I stumbled upon when responding to a comment on my blog from Lindsay Mitchell. It comes from a piece she wrote – adamantly opposed to benefits because of their supposed encouragement to having children. You can find support in surprising places:

              “The researchers state, receipt of welfare income is negatively associated with children’s outcomes, even when level of income is controlled. This effect derives not so much from welfare receipt per se, but from parental characteristics that make some parents more prone than others to be on welfare….Persistently poor families are much more likely than other families to have a caregiver suffering from depression, anxiety or other psychological problems, physical health problems, low cognitive skills, drug or alcohol abuse or other problems. These factors, taken in combination, reduce the likelihood of consistent and nurturing parenting.

              It’s a moot point as to whether that pre-existing ‘damage’ to parents would lead to less harm being done, and happening in peoples’ lives (including children’s lives), if the DPB were not available. It’s also moot as to whether removal of the DPB would reduce rates of teenage parenting and/or sole parenting. Given the motives that appear – from the research – to be in operation, I don’t think so.

              As I think Bill once said, there’s a simple way of ending child poverty: end poverty.

              • I’m not arguing for the removal of the DPB, that would be a stupid thing to do. However, the way it’s set up currently does act to increase child poverty by encouraging greater numbers of births in the most at-risk category. (And “encouraging” isn’t necessarily the prompting of a considered decision to accept a financial incentive, it can involve as little as prompting people to take less care with contraception because there is less reason to fear the consequences.)

                Statistical backup for it is the increase in the proportion of births in that category and numbers of people on that benefit – ie, we can reasonably expect a system that offers a way for the unemployed to reclassify themselves as something more respectable (without the difficulties of getting an education or finding employment) to be adopted by increasing numbers of people, and since its inception we’ve seen it being adopted by increasing numbers of people. What would be difficult would be finding some credible alternative explanation for the increase, as demonstrated by McFlock’s efforts above.

                I did read the Jean Hardisty piece you linked to, but Murray’s explanation for the increase (ie, that the proportion of out-of-marriage births increases only because the proportion of births to married people falls) would be a partial explanation at best in the NZ context. It would also be unpersuasive in any case, because if the proportion of out-of-marriage births is increasing only because the general birth rate is falling, there’s still an effective increase to account for – ie, why isn’t the out-of-marriage rate falling along with the general birth rate?

                Your re-quote from Lindsay Mitchell’s piece is interesting. I see it somewhat differently: if people like me have one or two kids and people like She-Who-Apparently-Must-Not-Be-Named has five, the pregnancies for whom she drank through and who have childhoods characterised by the risk of fatal neglect, the proportion of the population with catastrophic parentage is going to increase over time. The response doesn’t have to be removal of the DPB, which would beat raising benefit amounts as a response likely to make things worse. But some measures to try and stop that proportional increase are needed – I’m no social policy expert, but we do have plenty of them on the payroll we could ask. That Lindsay Mitchell piece you linked to also makes some recommendations.

                As to the way to end child poverty being to end poverty, it’s meaningless – much like saying the way to end child illness is to end illness.

                • KJT

                  “how can you encourage young poor people with limited prospects not to have kids – positive or punitive?”

                  If, as others claim here, large numbers are going on the DPB to have an income, enable them to have a decent life without the necessity of having children to get an income. A GMI!

                  As the total numbers of young solo Mums are in the thousands, not tens of thousands, less than 5000, total, teenage mums at the moment, it cannot be that many, but I would agree that even a few having kids for an income is too many.

                  The solution, though, is not to punish them and their kids by keeping them in poverty, with all the resulting problems, but to give them better options.

                  Increasing the education, wealth and social power of women is the one proven non co-ercive method of cutting birth rates.

                  Those children are our future. If they do not have a good start in life our whole society will suffer.

                  • Couple of things.

                    1. The number of sole parents under 20 on a benefit isn’t large, but a proportion of that number winds up as sole parents on a benefit over 20, over 30 etc – ie, the small number of sole parents under 20 isn’t relevant because the problem doesn’t go away at the point they turn 20.

                    2. During the last Labour govt, unemployment figures dropped dramatically but DPB figures didn’t. That suggests that availability of the kind of low-paid jobs open to people with no skills and almost no education isn’t regarded as a “better option” by teenagers moving onto the DPB. In short, if there’s no stick, you’re going to need a mind-bogglingly expensive carrot.

                    • McFlock

                      Say what?
                         
                      The dude arguing that the DPB is an incentive to procreate is also arguing that as conditions improve (i.e. the DPB is less of an incentive) there is no drop in DPB uptake? Isn’t that contradictory?

                    • KJT

                      Still not many. The DPB is less than 8% of social security payments.

                      And the majority on it are older women, who had partners when they had children. Partners who hide their income in trust funds or go overseas to avoid supporting their kids.

                    • just saying

                      You don’t think there might be some differences in circumstances between an unemployed person, and a sole parent of a small child or children? Hint – childcare, flexible hours, already having a demanding and time-consuming job…

                      Also, do you have a link proving that DPB figures didn’t drop to some degree when UE figures did?

                      In short, if there’s no stick, you’re going to need a mind-bogglingly expensive carrot. So you think we should further punish sole parents for the lack of flexible employment with liveable wages, and affordable childcare. Now there’s a novel thought.

                      You really are all heart Psychomilt

                    • KJT

                      You trying to tell me that people who start in poverty tend to remain in poverty.

                      Not exactly news, and an indictment of how much the mean society has blocked upward social mobility.

                    • Link for DPB figures unaffected by fall in unemployment during Labour’s time in office – see graph, p10.

                      Isn’t that contradictory?

                      No. The DPB is relatively attractive when compared to the shitty, low-paid jobs available to unskilled and uneducated teenagers – that’s part of the problem.

                      Still not many. The DPB is less than 8% of social security payments.

                      Irrelevant. What matters is the proportion of new births that are in this high-risk category for child poverty – it’s now up above 20%.

                      And the majority on it are older women, who had partners when they had children.

                      Also irrelevant. Use of the DPB for the purposes it was intended isn’t part of this discussion.

                      You don’t think there might be some differences in circumstances between an unemployed person, and a sole parent of a small child or children?

                      Obviously there are differences. For example, the govt stops mithering you about looking for a job if you’re a sole parent, which is one reason transitioning from being a mere unemployment beneficiary to being a sole parent with an important job to do raising the next generation can appear relatively attractive to teenagers with few prospects.

                    • McFlock
                       
                       

                      It’s ral simple – I don’t care if you call it supply and demand, or dose:response, or whatever. If something is a cause, the wider the difference between it and the surrounding environment increases the incidence of the condition or behaviour it causes.
                           
                      If a level remains constant when everything else changes, then the cause is almost certainly something different.
                       

                    • fatty

                      “No. The DPB is relatively attractive when compared to the shitty, low-paid jobs available to unskilled and uneducated teenagers – that’s part of the problem.”

                      To me that is the key problem…address that and we will see the greatest improvement. That view is also backed up by your statement above..

                      “During the last Labour govt, unemployment figures dropped dramatically but DPB figures didn’t. That suggests that availability of the kind of low-paid jobs open to people with no skills and almost no education isn’t regarded as a “better option” by teenagers moving onto the DPB. In short, if there’s no stick, you’re going to need a mind-bogglingly expensive carrot.”

                      I agree with that until your last sentence. The is no need for a “mind-bogglingly expensive carrot”…all we have to do is take back all the resources and money that the rich are sitting on. Give fair wages to all jobs so that a reasonable life can be lived.
                      The stick will do nothing, and low unemployment will do nothing as long as the wages are still unreasonable. Minimum wage needs to be way higher, and the highest wage earners need to be earning a fraction of their current levels.
                      There is nothing mind-boggling about that, I’d call it logical and easy to do.

    • bbfloyd 3.2

      good handle psycho… very apt…. unfortunately, this isn’t the right forum for your brand of illness…. unless this is a rather tasteless attempt at misdirection?? either way, the clever thing to do would have been to keep your own counsel in this instance…..

      • just saying 3.2.1

        We’ve run out of space up there, but this is a reply to fatty at 12.35

        Good reply.

        The ongoing and ignorant shit about beneficiaries, coming for all quarters, just wears me down. I’m glad you’ve got the energy and smarts to keep challenging it.

    • mike e 3.3

      or is that the kids that go to private schools and die of alcohol problem or the leaders of parties that expouse your views and leave families fatherless and get away with it because they are rich and powerful but have no accountability even though they are cost accountants

  4. higherstandard 4

    Once you’ve moved past the political point scoring the actual report has some interesting comparisons.

    http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/52/43/41929552.pdf

  5. Karl Sinclair 5

    Say no more…….

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-18251582

    ‘Experts said children are coming under increasing stress because of unemployment, financial problems and substance abuse among their parents.’

    The National Party, an Averagae party.. following the same economic bs as America, USA… etc

  6. Karl Sinclair 6

    Say no more…….

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-18251582

    ‘Experts said children are coming under increasing stress because of unemployment, financial problems and substance abuse among their parents.’

    The National Party, an Averagae party…. No Solutions, just Average…..

  7. Lindsay 7

    “receipt of welfare income is negatively associated with children’s outcomes, even when level of income is controlled. This effect derives not so much from welfare receipt per se, but from parental characteristics that make some parents more prone than others to be on welfare….Persistently poor families are much more likely than other families to have a caregiver suffering from depression, anxiety or other psychological problems, physical health problems, low cognitive skills, drug or alcohol abuse or other problems. These factors, taken in combination, reduce the likelihood of consistent and nurturing parenting.”

    Hi Puddlegum

    Yes, I use this quote but also qualify it with my own observations; that the “parental characteristics” are supported or indulged by welfare. Those characteristics can be both a cause and effect of welfare.

    The “pre-existing” damage you refer to I take as meaning pre-eisting the state of being on a benefit. But this types of damage is often derived from being raised in a long-term, non-working, single parent home. It develops in children whose care-givers are on a benefit.

    Also research into outcomes for children according to the source of that income finds in favour of poor children raised in working homes. But I covered that in the same speech.

    I will address your last comment on your blog as time allows.

    Lindsay

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    Labour | 10-08
  • Interview Between Selwyn Manning & Sean Plunket Over SIS Release of OIA...
    During a RadioLive interview between host Sean Plunket and managing director of Multimedia Investments Ltd, journalist Selwyn Manning, a fiery exchange developed after Plunket attempted to “wet flannel” the issue of whether the Prime Minister has been truthful over what...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • “Even though my hours are being cut, my rent doesn’t get cut to compens...
    Fast Food = Slow Pay   Lola is a manager at a major fast food chain. Last year her employer arbitrarily cut her hours from 32 hours to anywhere between 18 and 26 hours each week. “I said I can’t...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Hate Politics has no place in NZ Politics
    I wasn’t going to write about Nicky Hagar’s ‘Dirty Politics’.  There are plenty of policy issues to discuss. Then I read the book, and what it reveals strikes at the very heart of our democracy. My overwhelming feeling is one...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Pak’nSave pull adverts from Whaleoil
    Pak n Save have replied to complaints that their adverts were appearing on hate speech site Whaleoil by deciding to block their adverts from appearing on the site. Their reply… Congratulations for Pak’NSave on making this type of ethical stand. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Herald Poll – Why the Greens will hit 15%
    The biggest problem for John Key is that there are swathes of National Party voters who are educated and decent people whom will be forced to read Dirty Politics out of intellectual curiosity and will be horrified by what National...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Dirty Politics and Dirty Media
    The Nicky Hager book is mind blowing on so many levels. The revelations of government ministers and their staff colluding with vile and hateful schemers to attack other people, is truly ugly. When the dust settles on the illegalities, immoralities...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • “You just have to keep on fighting” – an interview with Metiria Turei
    We’re meeting in her office. It’s austere, though she does have a nice teapot. The view is startling. One can map the Bowen Triangle, though the teapot is still more interesting. A group of pink faced men are running across...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Taxation and Real Estate – turning housing debate on its head
    The debate about property prices in New Zealand is disingenuous. It is clear that there is a global process in which speculators are using massive amounts of unspent and borrowed money to blow bubbles in the world’s major asset markets....
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – Faith and politics
    In a week which has seen our collective focus shift to those who see politics as a great game to be manipulated for their own ends, it is timely to reflect on the fact that many people are in fact...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Government’s Own Guidelines Show John Key Would Have Been Informed Of SIS...
    Analysis by Selwyn Manning. INFORMATION THAT I HAVE ACQUIRED, sourced from the State Services Commission, states in black and white the tight guideline requirements that must be followed whenever the SIS informs a Prime Minister of any pending release of...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Simply Not Credible: Dr Tucker’s “clarifications” are only making thi...
    THAT DR WARREN TUCKER, Director of the Security Intelligence Service in 2011, agreed to the release of politically sensitive material – thereby intervening in an on-going contretemps between the leaders of the National and Labour parties – without receiving the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • The Donghua Liu Affair: Evidence of Collusion between the NZ Herald and Imm...
    . 1. Prologue . The Donghua Liu Affair hit  the headlines on 18 June, with allegations that David Cunliffe wrote a letter in 2003,  on  behalf of  business migrant, Donghua Liu. Four days later, on Sunday 22 June, the Herald...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Dear Canon NZ – Malevolence should induce revulsion, it shouldn’t be ce...
    Giovanni Tiso’s analysis on Slater is possibly the best in NZ… It’s been a good week for some of us. A week of feeling vindicated, offeeling galvanised. Where it goes from here will depend on several factors, some of which are largely...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • 5AA Australia: After Dirty Politics Can National Provide Stable Government?
    AS WE ALL KNOW New Zealanders and Australians do not like political parties that are unstable, or can no longer assure us that they are able to provide stable government. And the big question for Kiwis as we prepare to...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • SIS letter means it’s over for Key
    It’s over. I may not agree with all of Phil Goff’s positions, but you can’t question his integrity the way Slater did in Dirty Politics and not be deeply concerned that our Secret Intelligence Agency is being used for political...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • who to vote for in Epsom
    who to vote for in Epsom...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • The Rise and Fall of John Key – who will be the next leader of National P...
    . . It was all set to go: Teamkey would be the cult of personality that would do Stalin, Mao, Reagan, Thatcher, or any of the Nth Korean Kim Dynasty, proud.  National and it’s “Teamkey” propaganda strategy   would cash-in Big Time...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Who said Kiwis couldn’t get a fire in their bellies over an arcane intern...
    An amazing team of activists has taken the campaign on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) to local governments throughout the country. Their latest triumph came last Monday when the Dunedin City Council endorsed a resolution expressing concern about the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National’s Dangerous Education Agenda Exposed
    Putting aside the dirty politics coming out of the Beehive and the right-wing blogisphere, there are some very strong signals that another term of a National Government would do even more serious damage to the public education system. The Education...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • We can have clean politics and get our democracy back.
    Something is rotten in our politics and it stinks. Dirty politics has sadly become one of the defining features of this election campaign. In the light of recent revelations about the extent of nasty and disingenuous political strategies, it would...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Book burning copies of Hager’s book? The next generation of National Part...
    It seems we are getting the next generation of National Party Dirty Politics now. There are claims the Young Nats in Hamilton are buying up copies of Dirty Politics and burning them. One witness was contacted by the Waikato Times...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National Party Poetry Day Haiku
    Key’s inbox and Cam’s poison most foul, there he blows hoist by own harpoon...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Why Cunliffe will be the next PM
    David Cunliffe will be the next Prime Minister of NZ. Labour’s inclusive and positive TV adverts… …are in stark contrast to National’s team of white people powering away from the rabble of the ‘others’… …the messaging is vital and crucial...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • From smiling assassin to grumpy butcher – on giving Judith Collins a last...
    After #dirtypolitics Key isn’t the smiling assassin, he is the grumpy butcher. When he said Judith had  a ‘last chance’ he meant 1 second after voting closes on 20th September. Key would love nothing more than to cut Collins loose and end...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • If the National Party rowing advert was real….
    If the National Party rowing advert was real there would be more blood in the water. If the National Party rowing advert was real it would be Cameron Slater calling the strokes. If the national Party rowing advert was real,...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Cameron Slater: Zionist and political pundit
    It is hard to know where to start with right-wing blogger Cameron Slater (Whale Oil), especially after the release of Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics. This confirmed everything many of us thought Slater to be: a snivelling pundit who serves...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Bryce Edwards stood down from Herald for election season??? Are the editors...
    I only found this out via twitter last night and I am still in shock. Bryce Edwards, easily the best critical thinker and news analyst the NZ Herald has has been stood down by the NZ Herald ‘for the election...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • So who’s a “conspiracy theorist” now?!
    . . As the media storm over Nicky Hager’s book, “Dirty Politics“,  and allegations over smear campaigns continue to swirl,  National’s spin doctors have given Key, Collins, and other National Party ministers a string of  phrases to use in all...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Momentum shift
    When you are deeply immersed in a local campaign sometimes it can be difficult to see the helicopter view.   I don’t know how accurate the political polls are and have always known that things can change quickly in politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Dear Toby Manhire. Bad call on backing Farrar
    Oh dear. I say this as someone who regards Toby Manhire as one of the smartest journalists/commentators/columnists this country has, and I think Toby has made a terribly dumb call here. Let’s see if Toby is still singing Farrar’s praises...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Radio NZ apologise to me for getting it wrong
    Radio NZ have contacted me, reviewed the claim by their host that I had an advance copy of Nicky Hager’s book and they have concluded they got it wrong, they have called me and apologised and will make a statement...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Reclaim UoA – Students’ Message to Steven Joyce
    Tertiary Education – we’ve been sold a lemon  A group of 30 students attended an event on Tuesday evening about ‘the future of tertiary education’ at which the Minister of Tertiary Education Steven Joyce was slated to speak. As Joyce...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Can someone in the media please ask the PM of NZ to categorically deny any ...
    Now we see the MO of Slater & Co, the setting up, the digging for dirt, the use of staff to dig that dirt, can the Prime Minister of NZ categorically deny any National Party staff worked with Cam Slater...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Panic setting in for National as they realise what’s about to happen
    And the terror starts to set in. I’ve never seen blind panic like this before  and it’s spreading as the enormity of what’s about to happen starts to sink in. Hager’s book is a mere entree, Nicky’s personal ethics wouldn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Hager’s Dirty Politics: what the book ultimately reveals is abuse of powe...
    Guide to the many faces of John Key Nicky’s book is now doing what I suspected it would do, create a shockwave of revulsion. Andrew Geddis over at Pundit Blog sums up this attitude best, and it’s reverberations build with every...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Fancy taking children seriously
    Let’s see why all political parties should pay close attention to the Green Party’s policy for children. First, it is a comprehensive attempt to put children, not ideology, at the heart of family policy. Wow, children at the heart of...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Amnesty International: Dear Azerbaijan, Stop Torture, Love Kiwi Kids
    This is a world where many adults often underestimate Generation Y. Being only a few years out of being a teenager myself, I feel I can make this statement with certainty. However, I have been the Youth Intern at Amnesty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GCSB meetings today in Christchurch 1pm at Uni 7pm at Cathedral
    The 2014 GCSB meetings to discuss the mass surveillance state legislation passed by this Government will be debated in Christchurch today at two different meetings. 1pm at Canterbury University bottom floor James Height Building: Chair: Bomber Bradbury Ruth Dyson – Labour Party...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about
    Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Guide to when Key is lying
    Guide to when Key is lying...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The State of the Student Nation …or is just Al...
    Students politics are dead and our student media is in terminal decline. The most disappointing thing about university is the politics, or should I say lack of? I was raised with the idea that students held the power.They were the...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Love Lifts Us Up: Thoughts from the Green Party’s campaign launch.
    Author Eleanor Catton wants people to give their party vote to the Greens.Photo by Peter Meecham NO ONE WAS QUITE SURE how he did it. Somehow Bob Harvey had persuaded the owners of the rights to Joe Cocker’s Up Where...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Test Stream
    width="600" height="400"> archive="http://theora.org/cortado.jar [3]" width="600" height="401">...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • LIVE STREAM: You, Me and the GCSB ChCh Public Meetings
    LIVE STREAM EVENT here at 1pm & 7pm: The 2014 GCSB meetings to discuss the mass surveillance state legislation passed by this Government will be debated in Christchurch today at two different meetings. PLEASE NOTE: TDB recommends Chrome and Firefox...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today,
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • How @whaledump might destroy the popular vote for National
    Dirty Politics is now creating a meltdown and National are in danger of a total vote collapse. The real threat to for National was if Nicky had all the emails released via the anonymous hacker who took them. That danger is now a...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Open letter to Radio NZ – you need to make a retraction now
    I have just sent this off to Radio NZ right now Dear Radio NZ Firstly, what a great interview by Guyon Espiner this morning with the Prime Minister. Great to see such hard hitting journalism. Unfortunately I am not contacting...
    The Daily Blog | 17-08
  • Radio NZ are lying about me
    I am getting this all second hand at the moment as I don’t bother listening to Radio NZ (except for that wonderful Wallace Chapman in the weekends) but there is a claim that Suzie Ferguson just insinuated on Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 17-08
  • Farrar’s fake claim of being invaded + Slater’s claims of death threats...
    The counter spin to avoid focus on the series allegations made in Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics continues. David Farrar’s ridiculous hysterics that he was invaded and his privacy has been blah blah blah has all been reduced from computer hacking to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-08
  • A shout out to the unsung heroes – our Public Service staff
    Government departments, particularly in the social welfare, education and health areas get a lot of shtick. And it’s not unjustified. We have problems in the way that our government departments treat those in need. And I do not intend to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-08
  • Honorary doctorate for Secretary-General of the UN
    An Honorary Doctor of Laws degree is to be bestowed on His Excellency Mr Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, by the University of Auckland on Wednesday 3 September, both in recognition of his role as an international statesman...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya
    The New Zealand Bar Association joins the International Bar Association (IBA) and other Law Societies and Bar Associations worldwide over the reported surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya, President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Bob Parker, China State Media and Tibet Forum
    Former Christchurch mayor was signed up to position statement without his knowledge; observed “happiness” in Tibet as Tibetan protesters elsewhere shot by security forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • “Walk the talk to reduce the wage gap”
    There’s just a few weeks left to convince the candidates of all political parties that reducing the wage gaps makes good sense....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Digital Currency on the Drawing Board
    Government policies and digital currency ideas and issues will come together at three public workshops next week....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • NZ Cycle Trail welcomes $8 million fund
    Government funding of $8 million to maintain and enhance the Great Rides of New Zealand will help ensure the trails are delivering the best possible visitor experience, says Evan Freshwater, Manager Nga Haerenga The New Zealand Cycle Trail Inc. (NZCT)....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Judges Comments Bonkers – McVicar
    Napier Conservative Party Candidate Garth McVicar is accusing a Judge of forgetting that he is the gate-keeper for the community and not a benevolent caregiver for law breakers. "The comments by this Judge are not just alarming, they're completely...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Oxfam: World must suspend arms sales to protect civilians
    As the New Zealand Government prepares to ratify the global Arms Trade Treaty, and after ceasefire talks collapsed and violence erupted yet again in Gaza yesterday, Oxfam is calling on all states to immediately suspend transfers of arms or ammunition...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Degrees in Picking up Rubbish
    Responding to the Fairfax media report of a University of Otago survey of Wellington’s street-connected walkways, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Another Union row
    “ The teachers union the NZEA is getting ready for another industrial dispute. These disputes now only occur in the government sector. National has no one to blame but themselves” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Whyte: Speech to Grey Power
    National’s failure to increase the age for super and reform health is a threat to every New Zealander’s security....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Local Govt should not go into business
    “No one should take any comfort from the fact that “Infracon”, a roading company in Tararua and Central Hawke's Bay, is to go into liquidation. This puts the future of more than 200 jobs in doubt. ACT sympathises with those...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Join the hikoi to end child poverty in New Zealand
    CPAG is calling on people across society to join a march from Britomart to Aotea Square in Auckland to demand action on child poverty in Aotearoa....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Ngapuhi Chair Says Enough of the Political Sideshow
    Time for side-shows to end so we can focus on future of our nation – Raniera (Sonny) Tau, Chairman, Te Runanga A Iwi O Ngapuhi...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Commissioner of Police v Kim Dotcom And Ors
    An order is made extending the duration of the registration of the restraining orders issued by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on 10 and 25 January 2012 and registered in New Zealand on 18...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Labour Announcement on Future of Hillside Workshops Welcome
    Labour leader David Cunliffe’s announcement in Dunedin today that a government led by his party would re-open Hillside Railway workshops was welcomed by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU). ‘Since the workshops were shut down in late...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Primary teachers and principals vote to put kids first
    Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Prime Time with Sean Plunkett: Educating for Success
    In all the turmoil stirred up by the "Dirty Politics" revelations, the real issues that the campaign should be about have been put to one side....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Dirty Politics – Number One Bestseller and Back in Stores
    An exposé of the hidden side of New Zealand politics, Nicky Hager's book, Dirty Politics , has been in hot demand since its release last Wednesday....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Epsom: profiling NZ’s most controversial electorate
    Welcome to the wealthy inner Auckland electorate of Epsom: home of coat-tailing, the Tea Tapes, a convicted outgoing MP... and heavy newspaper and magazine readership....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Families Free From Violence campaign and website
    We are pleased to announce the launch of our Families Free From Violence campaign and our new Families Free From Violence website. This website has been created to encourage people to take responsibility for ending family violence by seeking help...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • PSA And DHBs Reach Settlement on Five Collective Agreements
    The 20 District Health Boards are pleased to reach settlement via mediation on five Multi Employer Collective Agreements (MECAs) with the Public Service Association for 12,000 mental and public health nurses, allied, public health and technical staff,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Refusal to complete census results in 46 convictions
    Failing to fill out a census form has resulted in the convictions of 46 people, Statistics New Zealand said today....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Council Amalgamations Still Bad Deal
    Northland, Bay of Plenty, and Wellington ratepayers should not be seduced into accepting the amalgamation of their Councils by a recent amendment to legislation allowing for local boards not community boards, Chris Leitch, Democrats for Social Credit...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • DHB industrial action withdrawn
    The Public Service Association (PSA) has withdrawn notices of industrial action covering 12,000 health workers at District Health Boards (DHBs) across New Zealand, after progress was made in mediation....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Aged Care Pledge Needs Better Target, Says Care Agency
    Labour’s pledge to set up an aged care working group to address industry concerns is good to see, but appears to skirt the obvious issue of a looming lack of beds and carers for our rapidly growing elderly population, says...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Social inequality still rife in New Zealand
    Social inequality has worsened over the past decade in New Zealand, a new study from Victoria University of Wellington shows....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Working towards a living wage and more Māori in paid work
    The Māori Party will build on the gains it has already achieved in Government and accelerate job opportunities particularly for young Māori....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Deepwater Group Supports Changes to Catch Limits
    The Deepwater Group says the increase in the Total Allowable Commercial Catch for hoki shows the benefits of a long term commitment to build biomass in this major New Zealand fishery....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Ohariu candidate Sean Fitzpatrick
    “Our Ohariu candidate will be Sean Fitzpatrick. Sean has strong ties to the region and I’m glad to hear he will be doing his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the area,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Tauranga candidate Stuart Pederson
    “Our Tauranga candidate will be Stuart Pedersen. Stuart has strong ties to Tauranga and I’m glad he has agreed to do his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the electorate,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party scores massive own goal
    Green Party scores massive own goal as their own policy auditor criticises their fiscal plan...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party’s own Auditor of their Budget finds it dodgy
    “The Alternative Budget released by the Green's does not even stack up in the eyes of their chosen auditor – Infometrics” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • New shark finning laws fall short for threatened species
    Environmental groups are welcoming some aspects of a raft of law changes announced today in relation to shark finning, but say that overall the chance for New Zealand to catch up with international efforts in shark conservation is being missed....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Promoting Labour’s Positive Policies
    General Secretary of the New Zealand Labour Party, Tim Barnett, today launched Labour’s television advertisements for the 2014 election. The advertisements help tell Labour’s positive story for a better New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Drug Court: Rare Insight into New Alternative Justice Model
    Māori Television’s latest New Zealand documentary presents a fascinating look inside a new alternative justice model – through the stories of convicted criminals....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Political parties pledge to increase overseas aid
    A survey of political parties looking at how much New Zealand should spend on Official Development Assistance (ODA) shows the overwhelming majority of parties are committed to raising the bar according to the Council for International Development (CID)....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Top Kiwis backing Tip the Scales campaign
    Sir Graham Henry, former All Black Kees Meeuws, singer-song writer Jamie McDell and fishing guru Matt Watson have pledged their support to Tip the Scales, a pre-election campaign generating public support for rebuilding New Zealand’s depleted inshore...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Maritime Union continues to press over dirty politics
    Maritime Union National President Garry Parsloe says Ports of Auckland management is trying to get off the hook from its involvement with extreme right wing bloggers during the Ports of Auckland dispute....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • No end in sight to overwhelming human cost of conflict
    Two ceasefires have brought some respite to civilians in Gaza and southern Israel, amid hope that a durable cessation of hostilities might occur. In Gaza, these breaks in the fighting have barely given people enough time to seek medical care,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Young Kiwi speakers to represent NZ at Gallipoli 2015
    The RSA is delighted at the announcement made by Veterans' Affairs Minister Michael Woodhouse today, that all eight regional finalists of the 2015 ANZ RSA Cyril Bassett VC Speech Competition will be included in a group of 25 Youth Ambassadors...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • “Bromance” Marriage Stunt Insulting Says LegaliseLove
    A promotional competition asking two best mates to get married in order to win an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2015 Rugby World Cup is insulting, marriage equality campaign LegaliseLove Aotearoa claims....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Cannabis Party first to register for 2014 General Election
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party became the first party to register for the 2014 General Election today, when it meet with the Electoral Commission in Wellington at Midday....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • PGA: Addresses NZ’s ratification of Arms Trade Treaty
    President of Parliamentarians for Global Action and New Zealand MP Ross Robertson today addressed a celebration to mark New Zealand’s imminent ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), which is expected within the next few weeks....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Roy Morgan Poll August 20
    National (48%) holds its lead over Labour/ Greens (39%) as ‘Dirty Politics’ revelations provide a new challenge for PM John Key’s leadership. NZ First surge to 6.5% - highest support since September 2013....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • IGIS inquiry into release of NZSIS information
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (IGIS), Cheryl Gwyn, announced today that she would be instituting an inquiry concerning allegations that the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) might have released official information...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Glen Scanlon to Head Digital Media at Radio New Zealand
    Radio New Zealand has announced the appointment of Glen Scanlon to the recently created position of head of digital media....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Israel’s Gaza ceasefire violations go unreported
    It seems that it is only ceasefire violations that emanate from the Palestinian side that ever get publicised....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Drug courier sentenced for importing heroin
    South African drug courier, Laura Elizabeth Cilliers, was sentenced today in the Christchurch District Court to 7 years and 10 months in prison for importing approximately 1.2 kilograms of heroin....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Residential Property Speculators Days Numbered
    Rent heat cools as homes are replaced ... Liz McDonald ... The Press http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/business/your-property/10400851/Rent-heat-cools-as-homes-are-replaced Comment on thread (in moderation) … Christchurch is a “severely unaffordable” City as the Annual Demographia Survey ( www.demographia.com ) illustrates … thanks...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
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