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How to: Pick an Excuse for Not doing Anything About Poverty

Written By: - Date published: 11:08 am, December 12th, 2013 - 97 comments
Categories: benefits, capitalism, class war, cost of living, economy, Economy, employment, poverty, socialism, tax, uncategorized, welfare - Tags:

Right wing, excuses reasons, for not doing anything about children in poverty.

1. “It costs too much”.
2. “Taxation is theft”.
3. “They are not as poor as they are in (Insert a third world Nation with less than half our GDP, and a 10th of our resources per capita)”.
4. “The statistics are wrong”.
5. “It is not as many as they claim”.
6. “You can’t get rid of poverty by giving people money”.
7. “I was in a poor persons house and they had “Chocolate biscuits, a colour TV, or, horrors, a bottle of beer”!!
8. “It’s all those solo mothers on the DPB breeding for a living”.
9. “I know a person who…………..”
10. “It is a choice they make”.
11. “It is people who make poor choices”.
12. “They shouldn’t have had kids they couldn’t afford”.
13. “Why should “I” pay for other peoples kids”.
14. “The centre will never vote for it”.
15. “We will do something if finances allow”.
16. “Giving them money made them poor”.
17. “Those socialists made them poor by giving them benefits”.
18. “I pay enough taxes”.
19. “There are no poor in New Zealand”.
20. “Not now, later!”

97 comments on “How to: Pick an Excuse for Not doing Anything About Poverty”

  1. scotty 1

    21. Not educated.

    Cos if everyone had a degree , the wages for lowly paid service jobs would increase overnight.

    • um..!.just as a bit of an historical-tidy-up..(just so we can get things/nationals’-inaction into some kind of perspective/context..)

      ..how about a listing of the excuses from labour/those who were there…

      ..for those nine long years of the clark govt/labour doing nothing about poverty..?

      ..that could be both useful and enlightening..

      ..eh..?

      ..and while we are there..cd anyone give us the date that labour renounced/denounced that poverty-neglect/inaction..?

      ..what’s that i hear you say..?..they haven’t yet..?

      ..they are..to date..a mea culpa-free zone..?

      ..that’s a bit of a worry..eh..?

      ..phillip ure..

      • phillip ure 1.1.1

        and of course..that decade of labours’/clarks’ inaction/stigmatising of the poorest..

        ..could not have prepared the ground better – for what then bennett wrought..

        ..eh..?

        ..phillip ure..

    • Francis 1.2

      Yep. Instead of having a minimum wage job, they’d have a minimum wage job and a huge student debt.

  2. Paul 2

    22. The money will trickle down…

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    23. I was poor too once, but after a bit of honest hard work I’m now a multi-millionaire.

  4. Rogue Trooper 4

    Midday Report:
    Reserve Bank- Interest rates highly likely to rise in March, or thereabouts. Will continue to rise in the order of 2% over the next two years; rising consumer spending and construction activity. “Inflation pressures building” -Wheeler
    Here’s some ‘excuses’-
    Grocery price rises this year
    -Milk 67%
    -Butter 23%
    -Cheese 5%
    -Chicken 8%
    -Beef / Lamb around 4% (was distracted by the implications).

    The squeeze is tightening it’s grip, as those cups are applied to more udders.

    PS, encouraging quote heading your blog KJT

    • KJT 4.1

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desiderata

      I try to live up to it. Not always as successfully as I would like!

      I also like the seafaring version of Kipling.
      “If you can keep your head, when all about you are losing theirs” You don’t know what the fuck is going on!

      • Rogue Trooper 4.1.1

        helpful to have some guidance when all at sea. Minimises the frequency of ‘rants’, although, they relieve the boiler pressure . 😀 : aye aye , it’s a sailor’s life to be.

  5. Balanced View 5

    Until initiatives are put in place to restrict welfare abuse, the wider public will forever be reluctant to support the poor, especially when they are struggling themselves.
    I haven’t met anyone that isn’t prepared to help someone that is willing to help themselves, and this would include the right wingers you refer to in your unhelpful article.

    • KJT 5.1

      Yeah. Right!

    • KJT 5.2

      Welfare abuse.
      Less than 0.6%. And most of it was by WINZ staff, or someone who forgot to tell them a minor detail. A few mill a year.

      Tax dodging. By those who refuse to pay their fair share. No one knows, but definitely in the billions.

      No 24. ” There are thousands dishonestly ripping off the welfare system”.

      Complaining about a person who, mostly mistakenly, gets a few hundred more in welfare than their measly entitlements, often because of a WINZ staff mistake, compared to someone who rips us off for hundred of thousands by fudging their tax accounts.

      • phillip ure 5.2.1

        welfare rip=offs = $23 million per yr..

        ..tax-rip-offs by corporates/elites/1% = $2.5 billion per yr..

        (there is yr ending/solving-poverty-solution right there..)

        ..phillip ure..

        • Balanced View 5.2.1.1

          This is a separate argument. And one I agree with.
          But this should not be aligned at all to the poverty debate.

          • McFlock 5.2.1.1.1

            It’s relevant in that it illustrates how some people advocate the complete elimination of an already small rate of welfare offending, yet ignore a substantially larger rate of white-collar offending.

            But I guess that just as they believe in the “deserving poor”, they also believe in the “deserving criminal”.

          • Frank Macskasy 5.2.1.1.2

            “But this should not be aligned at all to the poverty debate.”

            Rubbish.

            It is INTRINSIC to the poverty “debate”. Though why anyone would be debating poverty rather than addressing it escapes me.

            It is intrinsic because the above are excuses employed by those with rightwing inclinations to choose not to address this growing problem.

            It is intrinsic because these are all cliches which give those who parrot them an excuse to do precisely nothing.

            Your ‘beef’, BV is that KJT has called you and others like you on these cliched excuses and you can’t handle it.

      • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 5.2.2

        No 25. The wealthy in society must be given freedom to make money on their money and do whatever they want because we depend on them for our wellbeing

        …we depend on them because they have so much money because we give them the freedom to increase their wealth regardless of what effect that has on the rest of us.

    • Arfamo 5.3

      The problem is how do you define welfare abuse?

      Giving tax breaks to corporates, bailing out failed finance companies with taxpayer money, giving tax cuts to the wealthy, lowering real incomes in the face of cost increases as well as reducing job protections and conditions and effectively increasing taxes (with hidden levies and gst increases) on those who have the lowest incomes is basically abusing their welfare.

      • Rogue Trooper 5.3.1

        Key, Joyce and Bennett would say “it’s all semantics”.

        • Arfamo 5.3.1.1

          So – fine, I’m anti-semantic, and I don’t mind admitting it. :)

          • Rogue Trooper 5.3.1.1.1

            to the point. I experience a regular struggle to not loathe, despise and critique Tories, Conservatives and Libertarians, yet I overcome it. 😀

            • Arfamo 5.3.1.1.1.1

              Fair enough. Can I interest you in a tumbril or a guillotine? Just as a possible investment for the future. Get in now while they’re cheap. You can maybe onsell them or rent them out to disgruntled mobs at some point in the maybe not too distant future?

              • Rogue Trooper

                ‘tumbrel'; reluctantly, even Ellul had to reconcile his Christianity with revolutionary violence. Could need troopers to lead the horses. 😉

    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 5.4

      @ Balanced View
      Until people realise the interconnected nature of our society where one person’s freedom can affect another’s freedom then we will continue to have people who don’t understand that there is a large chunk of people in this country who are not placed in a good position to create a ‘good life’ for themselves due to our enabling of licentious behaviour for a few in our society.

      Realising the interconnected nature of our circumstances leads to the realisation that helping people in poor circumstances lifts the quality of life of most people in society (apart from those who are creaming it as things are now)

      Whereas when ‘competition’ and ‘dog eat dog’ are the standard messages we receive and live by then there will continue to be only a few ‘dogs’ at the top and increasing numbers of people who are at the bottom of the heap ‘competing’ with one another and suffering for no reason other than the misguided and alienating attitudes we are fed and believe by those who are ‘winning’ as things stand and that are creating this state of inequity – because they benefit from it.

      So ‘Balanced View’, why do you mention welfare abuse and not have tax evasion foremost in your mind – because if everyone paid their fair share then there would be more money flowing to create jobs and less being hidden away doing jackshit apart from raising prices of everything via the futures market and there would not be a problem with joblessness nor welfare ‘costs’.

      • Balanced View 5.4.1

        I’m pointing out WHY a lot of people are reluctant to provide additional welfare, after all, that’s fundamentally what this article is about.
        I wasn’t discussing HOW to pay for it, or HOW to reduce poverty.

        • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 5.4.1.1

          Yes Balanced View I did get what you were saying, and I am asking why you [and others] don’t focus on things that would actually serve people.

          • Balanced View 5.4.1.1.1

            Why the assumption that I don’t?
            In fact that is why I commented on this. Articles like this are inflammatory and tend to polarise opinions on both sides of the argument, making the solutions harder to achieve.

            • Colonial Viper 5.4.1.1.1.1

              Articles like this are inflammatory and tend to polarise opinions on both sides of the argument

              Fuck off, there is no “other side of the argument” relating to ensuring economic justice for all NZers.

              You either hold that as a value, or you don’t. And you don’t.

              • Balanced View

                Clearly there is an opposing view, or you wouldn’t be so angry all of the time :)
                If there’s no willingness to understand each other’s view in a sensible and pragmatic way, the gap between views will never be bridged.

                • McFlock

                  we understand your view.

                  You oppose the microscopic amount of welfare fraud, but seem to ignore tax evasion.

                  • Balanced View

                    Obviously you don’t understand my view, I don’t ignore tax evasion, executive salaries, monopolistic industries or any other facet of inequality.

                    • McFlock

                      You don’t seem to oppose them, though, especially compared to your comments on welfare fraud.

                    • Balanced View

                      Actually I don’t think I mentioned welfare fraud.
                      But anyway, Your mistake is thinking that a comment about wishing that some of the poor would make better decisions is somehow endorsing corporate tax avoidance. That is incorrect.

                    • McFlock

                      sorry, welfare “abuse”.

                      Fucking obnoxious, people getting their full legislated entitlements.

                      I never said you “endorse” tax evasion (not “avoidance, which is also shit, “evasion”). But you’re always so quick to raise the matter of welfare “abuse”/fraud, displaying a keenness that you don’t similarly show when white collar fraud comes up.

                      Anyway, I’m off to bed too.

                    • Balanced View

                      Ahh we’ll i do that as a lone voice on right leaning blogs like whale oil. No need to do it here, 40 others would beat me to it.
                      Goodnight Flocker.

                • Colonial Viper

                  If there’s no willingness to understand each other’s view in a sensible and pragmatic way, the gap between views will never be bridged.

                  And thus it shall be. So?

                  • Balanced View

                    And that CV, in my opinion is your problem. You’d rather have a “hung jury” in holding out for what you see is right, than compromise a little in order to make progress on the issue.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Huh? Are you an MP with a casting vote in Parliament?

                    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                      @ Balanced View
                      Oh well…I missed that conversation, however if you are still around Balanced View – I made no assumption re your not focussing on things that would actually serve people – you chose to write a comment to point out an issue regarding welfare abuse, however made no mention of the much more costly phenomenon of tax abuse.

                      To be frank I agree that what you wrote is probably how some people think and I was suggesting that instead of buying into this way of thinking it might be more helpful to look at what can be done to really improve things. Informing those who hold such views on what is really going on would be a good start.

                      It really isn’t reasonable at all to say ‘Until initiatives are put in place to restrict welfare abuse’

                      Where have you been in the last year [even]??

                      There are plenty of initiatives in place to restrict welfare abuse and if people are still thinking there aren’t or want more then it really seems like some type of obsessive-compulsive disorder going on in the way such people are thinking.

                      Here is an initiative that has been in place for decades. If you rip off the system for $20 such as work a few hours and not let Winz know and are caught you are expected to pay back the entire benefit you’ve received – not solely the $20. This is why the cited dollar ‘amounts’ of benefit fraud are so high. People aren’t physically ripping off the system as much as is stated- what is stated is the amount they have to pay back. This in itself is a huge deterrent from not declaring what one has earned.

                      When the amounts of dollars in tax fraud is cited I suspect [unclear – but think this is so] that the amounts cited – 1-6 Billion- is the amount being ripped off – unlike benefit fraud where the amounts are deceptively inflated – so the real costs to this country re tax fraud is even greater than that of welfare fraud than has recently come to light.

                      It was interesting to hear on parliament channel last week a Labour member (Andrew Little if I recall correctly – yet might be wrong!) explaining that benefit fraud has commonly been targeted because it is easier to discover – tax fraud is trickier to uncover. I emphasise the point that it is not because welfare fraud is more damaging or a greater problem that there has been a focus on it – simply [according to that speaker] that it is easier to uncover and ‘score points’ with. ‘Look we are doing something’.

                      Sadly this has the effect of making the general population believe that there is a huge problem with welfare recipients and creating very little awareness on how vast the problem is with tax abuse. A very false fixation has developed.

                      You and others can carry on explaining why welfare abuse is worth commenting on whenever poverty comes up -yet I hope what I write goes some way to helping you understand such explanations provide very little progress when poverty is being discussed or on what is causing the most damage to general wealth in this country. You would be better speaking with those of your friends who hold such views and informing them on how small the numbers really are.

                      [lprent: He picked up a ban in the post about Jason Ede and Cameron Slater.

                      He was trying the plausible deniability technique (“I didn’t actually state what it looked like”) whilst trying to tell us how to run our site – which is on the list of self-martyrdom offences.

                      Plausible deniability may be a good trick in political forums and debating. But it is bloody lethal when I look at it. I also look at why they feel the need to use it and I usually come up with the answer of “troll”. It is actually safer to say what you think here than it is to try to insinuate it.

                      You’ll notice that Balanced View always tries to insinuate a viewpoint than simply stating his own views? ]

                    • Rogue Trooper

                      guess your “Balanced View” balanced you off the pendulum.

                    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                      Thanks for the explanation lprent – I had been reading that thread, however must have missed the banning of Balanced View.

                      Rogue Trooper LOL!

                    • Rogue Trooper

                      I only returned to read your comment and acknowledge the thought that went into it. (now I’m getting tired, gardening in the hot sun ….)

                    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                      Thanks Rogue Trooper :)

            • Arfamo 5.4.1.1.1.2

              The problem is BV telling us some people are reluctant to provide more welfare for whatever reason is stating the obvious. So unless you have some solutions to propose what is the point of commenting? If you don’t have any practical suggestions for how to reduce poverty why bother.

              • Balanced View

                Did you read the article? Why bother? My point exactly.

                • Arfamo

                  Yeah, I did. Before I replied to you. I wanted to see how many you ticked off.

                  I reckon yours are 1, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 16 and 17.

                  • Balanced View

                    Excellent, then you’ll agree that the article by Karol was pointless.
                    Actually, I would in some part tick off all except 1,2,15,18,20

                    • Arfamo

                      Well, no, I think the article was on point. And you are the perfect illustration of the point. But you can’t see that. Do you see what I mean?

                    • McFlock

                      If you’re that predictable, then it seems some do understand your point of view.

                      Unfortunately, your point of view is a promontory overlooking a sea of despair and self-absorption. If you look to your left you’ll see a flower-laden path to a distant but sunny field where children play and lambs frolic to the sound of Beethoven’s Pastorale.

                  • McFlock

                    tory bingo :)

                    • Balanced View

                      Arfamo – so me pointing out reasons why some people are reluctant to help children in poverty is pointless, but an article pointing out reasons why some people are reluctant to help children in poverty was on point? Hmmmm

                    • Arfamo

                      Yes. Exactly. But I see that the significance of who these “some people” are escapes you, and it is late, very late. So I will bid you good night.

                    • Balanced View

                      Goodnight, thanks for the debate

            • Frank Macskasy 5.4.1.1.1.3

              “In fact that is why I commented on this. Articles like this are inflammatory and tend to polarise opinions on both sides of the argument,…”

              Oh, BV, you have such a blinkered view. I’d say opinjons are already polarised – especially on right wing websites where commentary on welfare beneficiaries can only be described as hate speech.

              The polarisation is there for anyone with the eyes to see and the neuron-connectivity to understand.

              KJT has taken many of the comments used in polarised comments and shown them up for what they are; mindless cliches to be parrotted ad nauseum, in lieu of actual thinking.

              You can’t for one moment tell us that you’ve never seen those remarks made on websites like Trademe, Whaleoil, Kiwiblog, etc, etc, etc, etc, etc…

              What is really troubling is that you’re more interested in KJT’s insight rather than what this whole issue is about; growing poverty and income inequality in this country.

              Wait, let me guess “throwing money at the problem, yada yada yada…”

        • Colonial Viper 5.4.1.2

          I’m pointing out WHY a lot of people are reluctant to provide additional welfare

          Social welfare for corporates and big investors is OK though, just so we are clear.

          • Balanced View 5.4.1.2.1

            Off topic here CV. Another issue entirely.

            • Colonial Viper 5.4.1.2.1.1

              Rubbish. The topic is social welfare. You begrudge a beneficiary getting an additional thirty dollars pw but suddenly have no comment when it comes to corporates getting millions in sweetheart deals, or big investors getting bailed out 100 cents on the dollar plus interest.

              • Balanced View

                Wrong and wrong

                • Colonial Viper

                  You have a problem with a $200,000M GDP country spending a measley extra $300M pa on welfare to lift NZers and their children out of poverty?

                  What the fuck is your problemo?

                  • Balanced View

                    No, I don’t think I ever said I have a problem with the cost. I’d happily pay 100 times that if it was going to people in genuine need.
                    But I do have a problem with it going to people that continue to make decisions that restricts their own ability to move out of a vulnerable position. Fix/prevent that and I’ll support it all the way.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Bull shit.

                      Anyways your support is neither requested nor required.

                    • infused

                      Nope, can’t have people accountable.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Fine. Provide 100,000 new decent paying full time jobs and make people fully accountable for performing in the roles, then.

                    • But I do have a problem with it going to people that continue to make decisions that restricts their own ability to move out of a vulnerable position.”

                      What is the percentage of those people you refer to?

                      If you can’t provide that data, then you position is untenable as it relies on prejudice, not reality.

                      The fact is that that sentiment of Un-deserving Poor vs Deserving Poor is one of the cliches used by those who have a resentment against the welfare system, and denigrate all recipients based on a stereotype rather than reality.

                      Let me frame it this way; if we had enough jobs (and jobs with decent hours and pay, not McJobs that keep people trapped in poverty) for everyone – how many Deserving Poor would be employed, leaving only Undeserving Poor left?

                      (I seriously doubt you can answer that question in any meaningful way that provides actual figures – but I thought it only fair to ask. Surprise me.)

                    • Rogue Trooper

                      so productive of excuses; Post’s objective achieved.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 5.4.2

        Balanced View is delusional: pays lip service to the Tory mantra of “poor choices” – a callous and utterly discredited meme that only a dupe or a liar would still trot out.

        Which is it BV: are you too fucking stupid to understand that “poor choices” are not the reason for poverty, or do you know that and lie about it like low-life trash? Where’s your personal responsibility for your mendacious drivel?

      • Lloyd 5.4.3

        Actually even the people who are creaming the top of the economy may well be better off in the long run if they give a little of the cream to the poorest in the economy. This can be by taxes or by benevolence.
        Social welfare prevents social instability. You can’t enjoy your excessive profits if a revolution occurs triggered by gross inequities.
        Even before such massive social upheavals inequities drive crime and even the super-rich are affected.
        Poverty is a reservoir for all those third world diseases we hear New Zealand shouldn’t have. The thing about infectious diseases is that they are infectious. Again even the mega-rich are more likely to get the diseases of poverty if they are rife in the poorest classes.
        When an economy is booming the richest get richer, as does everybody else. The best way to get an economy humming is to make sure the poorest in society have enough money to spend on all their basic needs, as the poor have to spend the money straight away, which gets the economy spinning.

        • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 5.4.3.1

          I thoroughly agree with you Lloyd and find it odd that the wealthiest ( who are the ones benefiting the most from this system) are trashing the system by their insistence on not sharing and having it all!

  6. Balanced View 6

    I didn’t say dishonestly ripping off the system. It’s about taking actions to improve your position, or to reduce your dependence on others. Your stats don’t include that.

    • Rogue Trooper 6.1

      for a start, you equate poor with welfare recipient…, and that’s just for starters.

      • Balanced View 6.1.1

        Not necessarily, but including welfare yes.

        • Rogue Trooper 6.1.1.1

          Balanced View, or bay view? Furthermore, concerning “improving their position”, we live a comparatively unforgiving and risk-averse ‘market’ environment, wherein folk face many external barriers to “improvement” beyond their own efforts. Can be very difficult for people with episodes of “going off the tracks” in their history to re-enter the employment market, regardless of how extensive their CV, qualifications, experience and obvious talent.

          • Balanced View 6.1.1.1.1

            And I’m sympathetic to these people, and would have no problem in supporting them.
            However, I am less sympathetic to people that are struggling that choose to spend unwisely, or decide to have children etc.
            A lot of people like myself are concerned that increasing welfare support (however funded) encourages dependence and a sense of entitlement. I don’t believe that this is healthy for society.

            • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1.1

              You’re not their Mum, but out of their lives.

              A lot of people like myself are concerned that increasing welfare support (however funded) encourages dependence and a sense of entitlement.

              Then ensure that there are enough decent paying full time jobs to go around, instead of soap box moralising with your croc tears like a dick head.

              • Balanced View

                So you don’t believe that people should be allowed to express opinions on how others choose to spend their (or others) money?

                • Colonial Viper

                  What, you still want to be every poor person’s Mummy?

                  • McFlock

                    well, maybe their Big Brother.

                  • Balanced View

                    Not really, but did want to point out the hypocrisy of allowing the poor to make unhelpful decisions for society, but decrying corporates when they do the same

                    • Colonial Viper

                      but did want to point out the hypocrisy of allowing the poor to make unhelpful decisions for society,

                      So you decide to wail on the most powerless, under-represented, financially weak and victimised sections of NZ communities for the “unhelpful decisions” they make on behalf of our whole society?

                      What the hell are you smoking?

                    • Balanced View

                      We’ll your assumption that I ignore the contribution the wealthy have to this issue is incorrect.
                      And two wrongs don’t make a right. So your position of ignoring the issue I’ve raised is really no different than someone like Cameron Slater ignoring yours.

            • Frank Macskasy 6.1.1.1.1.2

              However, I am less sympathetic to people that are struggling that choose to spend unwisely, or decide to have children etc.

              BV, are you aware that the numbers on DPB are dropping, not increasing?

              And what does a worker with three kids do when the Global Financial Crisis made them redundant? Slit his children’s throats so that opponants of welfare can sleep easy knowing that their aren’t more families with kids going onto a benefit?

              So how does a worker look into the future to see if they’ll have a job, before deciding to have a family? How does one predict something like that?

              And why should workers with children who are made redundant, and happen to have children, be blamed for shenanigans on Wall Street and City of London? That’s 95,000 people here in NZ you’re trying to blame for events out of their control.

        • Rogue Trooper 6.1.1.2

          Personally, I’d love to be offered part-time employment to “improve my position” (I possess no money from Friday till the following ‘pay-day’), yet despite how wonderful the mainstream believe John Kirwan to be, experiences of mental-unwellness still attract more stigma than merely being on a benefit.

    • BM 6.2

      This.

      People being lazy useless pricks really chaffs peoples balls.

      • Arfamo 6.2.1

        Not enough. Key’s still the PM.

      • KJT 6.2.2

        Yes it does mine. Especially when they are in Parliament getting 300k a year.

        Or a Manager who just got a bonus after he lost the company owners 34 million and counting.

        Someone who is out of work because said Managers and politicians have ensured there are NF Jobs. Not so much!

      • Rogue Trooper 6.2.3

        and why’s that? Are they not happy in themselves such that they reference themselves to others.
        Of course, a literate chappie such as yourself would be aware of The Fundamental Attribution Error , correspondence bias-attribution effect; ” One of the root principles of social psychology” and regularly assess your own ramblings through such a filter?, or maybe not it appears.

      • People being lazy useless pricks really chaffs peoples balls.

        Posted by BM at 1.40pm. Shouldn’t you be at work, mate?

  7. Ake ake ake 7

    Sharp title.

    As an aside, should there be a post about –

    “How to: Pick an Excuse for Not Prosecuting a Company where 29 Lives Have Been Lost”

    • KJT 7.1

      I don’t think it is the company that should be in the gun so much as the regulators and politicians who allowed it.

      A large fine/compensation is appropriate for the company management, unless negligence is proven.

      Those with the real power should get jail terms.

      • Arfamo 7.1.1

        The problem I suspect is that the deficiencies in the regulatory departments are the result of the cost-cutting, corporate style way both national and labour administrations have governed their departments. No one could isolate which Ministers or Senior Executives were the most culpable in all probability.

        One of the things I remember most about the report into those departments is how the reviewers found that the DoL’s ordinary business plan risk assessments were mainly about managing the risks to their reputation, not the risks to workers.

  8. mike 9

    there are no children in poverty just totally neglectful parents. Sort this out and the problem goes away

    No 27? (KJT)

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  • Democracy for Nauru now
    Murray McCully must send the strongest possible message to the Nauruan Government that New Zealand does not condone its actions given the disturbing developments there, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “Right now we are seeing Nauru stripped of… ...
    5 days ago
  • Recovery needs more than a rebrand
    Today’s announcement of new governance arrangements for Canterbury seems to be nothing more than a fresh coat of paint on the same old approach, says Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “The Canterbury Recovery has been too slow, with… ...
    5 days ago
  • Copper decision a victory for status quo, not Kiwi households
    New Zealanders hoping for cheaper copper broadband will be disappointed by the Commerce Commission’s latest decision in the long running saga to determine the price of copper, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “In an apparent attempt to appease everyone,… ...
    5 days ago
  • It’s time for hard decisions in the Bay
     The Ruataniwha dam project is turning into a huge white elephant as the economics fail to stack up, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri.  “Ruataniwha simply doesn’t make economic sense when you look at other major irrigation schemes around the… ...
    5 days ago
  • More testing won’t lift student achievement
    Hekia Parata’s latest plan to subject school students to even more testing and assessment won’t do anything to lift the educational achievement of the kids who are struggling, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “New Zealand school students are already… ...
    5 days ago
  • Bad week for NZ economy gets worse
    The bad news for the New Zealand economy got worse this morning with the 8th successive drop in dairy prices at this morning’s global dairy auction, again exposing the absence of any Plan B from the National Government, Labour’s Finance… ...
    5 days ago
  • System failing to protect women and children from family violence
    Last week we called for mandatory child safety investigations in domestic violence cases. This came after the coronial inquiry into the deaths of Bradley and Ellen Livingstone and the verdict in the trial of the west Auckland boys charged with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    6 days ago
  • Backers banking on social bonds cash?
    The Government is refusing to say what the $29 million it has set aside for its controversial social bonds programme is for, raising suspicions it is an upfront payment to the project backers, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A… ...
    6 days ago
  • Plastic Free July
    Today is the start of Plastic Free July. Since its inception in Perth, Western Australia four years ago, more and more people and organisations from around the world have joined the call to refuse single use plastic products. Nearly all… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    6 days ago
  • State house sell off Bill gives extraordinary powers
    The Government is about to give Ministers extraordinary powers to take direct personal control of selling state houses, exempting Ministers from normal legal requirements and leaving the sale process wide open for corruption, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The… ...
    6 days ago
  • Cash for charter schools, mould for state schools
    At a time when state schools are struggling in old, cold, mouldy buildings and can barely make ends meet, the National Government is shovelling cash at charter schools which aren’t even spending the funding on kids’ education, Labour’s Education spokesperson… ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand needs a wise response to climate change
    Today in Parliament I got to hear from a group of New Zealanders who are concerned for the future of our country. Called Wise Response, the group is a broad coalition of academics, engineers, lawyers, artists, sportspeople and others who… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    6 days ago
  • No alternative as waste scheme trashed
    Nick Smith must explain how he is going to prevent contamination of New Zealand’s ground and water with liquid and hazardous waste after scrapping the only monitoring scheme and offering no replacement, says Labour’s Environment Spokesperson Megan Woods. “From today,… ...
    6 days ago
  • Flawed system rates death traps as safe
    ACC Minister Nikki Kaye needs to come clean about what really lies behind the reclassification of 18 vehicles in her new motor vehicle registration system introduced today, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. "New Zealanders deserve the truth about the… ...
    6 days ago
  • Tiwai Smelter and 800 workers left in limbo
     Workers at Tiwai smelter and the people of Southland have once again been left in limbo over their future in the ongoing debacle over whether the plant stays open, says Labour’s Leader Andrew Little.  “It’s not good enough that after two years of… ...
    6 days ago
  • New twist in state house sell-off saga
    The Government has opened the door to buyers of state houses simply being landlords and not required to provide social services, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The Prime Minister said at his post-Cabinet press conference buyers would not “have… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government fees will hit charities hard
    National’s decision to ignore the concerns of charities will see the voluntary sector face hundreds of thousands of dollars in new costs if the Policing (Cost Recovery) Amendment Bill passes, says Labour's Community and Voluntary Sector spokesperson Poto Williams. “National’s… ...
    7 days ago
  • Four out of ten for Simon’s Bridges
    The Transport Authority’s decision to fund only four of the 10 bridges promised in National’s shameless Northland by-election bribe is a huge embarrassment for Transport Minister Simon Bridges, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “After one by-election poll showed they… ...
    7 days ago
  • Falling consents adding to Auckland housing woes
    Falling numbers of building consents being issued in Auckland will add to the city’s housing shortfall and fuel skyrocketing house prices, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford “The Productivity Commission found there was a shortfall of around 32,000 houses by the… ...
    7 days ago
  • So Mr English, do you have a plan?
    DIpping confidence about jobs, wages and shrinking exports are highlighting the lack of a plan from the government to diversify the economy and build sustainable growth, Grant Robertson  Labour’s Finance Spokesperson said. " Data released over the last week… ...
    7 days ago
  • Serious risks to tenants and assets in sell-off
    Overseas evidence shows there are serious risks around the Government's plan to sell off state houses to social housing providers, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “In the Netherlands – where community housing providers supply the majority of social housing –… ...
    7 days ago
  • Land of milk and money
    Kiwi families are paying over the top prices for their milk and someone is creaming off big profits, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesperson David Shearer. “In 2011 the Government told us high New Zealand milk prices were a natural result… ...
    1 week ago
  • MoBIE largesse doesn’t stop with TVs and hair-straighteners
    The number of MoBIE staff earning more than $150,000 has risen 23 per cent in just a year, Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark says. Documents obtained from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment show there are now nearly… ...
    1 week ago
  • English wants to flog state houses to Aussies
    Bill English’s admission that he would sell hundreds of New Zealand’s state houses to the Australians is the latest lurch in the Government’s stumbling, half-baked housing policy, Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Bill English should face reality and admit his… ...
    1 week ago
  • Exports continue to fall as Government fails to diversify
    The Government quickly needs a plan to diversify our economy after new figures show that exports are continuing to fall due to the collapse in dairy exports, Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Dairy exports fell 28 per cent compared… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government inaction leads to blurring of roles
    The Treasury wouldn’t have had to warn the Reserve Bank to stick to its core functions if the Government had taken prompt and substantial measures to rein in skyrocketing Auckland house prices, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The problems… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Courthouse closures hitting regions
    The Government’s decision to shut down up to eight regional courthouses, some supposedly only temporarily for seismic reasons, looks unlikely to be reversed, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“The move has hit these regions hard, but appears to be a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A Victory for Te Tiriti o Waitangi
    This week my partner, who has a number of professions, was doing an archaeological assessment for a District Council. He showed me the new rules around archaeologists which require them to demonstrate “sufficient skill and competency in relation to Māori… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Tough bar set for Ruataniwha dam
     Today’s final decision by the Tukituki Catchment Board of Inquiry is good news for the river and the environment, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. “Setting a strict level of dissolved nitrogen in the catchment’s waters will ensure that the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister for Women and National missing the mark – part two
    The Minister for Women was in front of the select committee yesterday answering questions about her plans for women. Some useful context is that we used to have a Pay and Employment Equity Unit within the then Department of Labour… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Lavish penthouse spend confirms culture of extravagance
    At the same time thousands of New Zealanders are being locked out of the property market, the Government is spending up on a lavish New York penthouse for its diplomats, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. News that taxpayers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Television exodus cause for concern
    The shock departure of yet another leading journalist from the Native Affairs team raises further concern the Board and Chief Executive are dissatisfied with the team’s editorial content, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “Annabelle Lee is an experienced… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Million-plus car owners to pay too much ACC
    More than a million car owners will pay higher ACC motor vehicle registration than necessary from July, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “During a select committee hearing this morning it was revealed that car owners would have been charged… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill will restore democracy to local councils
    A new Labour Member’s Bill will restore democracy to local authorities and stop amalgamations being forced on councils. Napier MP Stuart Nash’s Local Government Act 2002 (Greater Local Democracy) Bill will be debated by Parliament after being pulled from the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister for Women again misses the mark – part one
    Yesterday I asked the Minister for Women about the government’s poor performance on it’s own target of appointing women to 45% of state board positions. I challenged why she’d put out a media release celebrating progress this year when the… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Banks enter Dragon’s Den in pitch for Government’s mental health experi...
    Overseas banks and their preferred providers were asked to pitch their ideas for bankrolling the Government’s social bonds scheme to a Dragon’s Den-style panel, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. Dragon’s Den was a reality television series where prospective ‘entrepreneurs’… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Mode bullying won’t stop people accessing content
    It’s disappointing that strong-arm tactics from powerful media companies have meant Global Mode will not get its day in court. Today a settlement was reached terminating the Global Mode service, developed in New Zealand by ByPass Network Services and used… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    2 weeks ago
  • More questions – why was the Former National Party President involved wit...
    Today in Parliament Murray  McCully said the reason Michelle Boag was involved in 2011 in the Saudi farm scandal was in her capacity as a member of the New Zealand Middle East Business Council. The problem with that answer is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister must explain Maori TV interference
    Te Ururoa Flavell must explain why he told Maori TV staff all complaints about the CEO must come to him – months before he became the Minister responsible for the broadcaster, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Sources have told… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • KiwiSaver takes a hammering after the end of kick-start
    National seems hell bent on destroying New Zealand’s saving culture given today’s news that there has been a drop in new enrolments for KiwiSaver, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “New enrolments for the ANZ Investments KiwiSaver scheme have plunged… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Straight answers needed on CYF role
    The Government needs to explain the role that Child, Youth and Family plays in cases where there is evidence that family violence was flagged as a concern, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Arden says. “The fact that CYF is refusing to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister confuses his political interests with NZ’s interest
    The Prime Minister’s statement in Parliament yesterday that a Minister who paid a facilitation payment to unlock a free trade agreement would retain his confidence is an abhorrent development in the Saudi sheep scandal, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • #raisethequota
    Last Saturday was World Refugee Day. I was privileged to spend most of my day with the amazing refugee communities in Auckland. Their stories have been inspiring and reflect the ‘can-do’ Kiwi spirit, even though they come from all different… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Dairy conversions causing more pollution than ever, report shows
    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) released two reports on freshwater quality and management last Friday. The water quality report shows that dairy conversions are hurting water quality and says that despite great efforts with fencing and planting, large… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Employers want urgent action on health and safety
    Moves by National to water down health and safety reforms have been slammed by employers – the very group the Government claims is pushing for change, says Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Relations Iain Lees-Galloway. “The Employers and Manufacturers’ Association has… ...
    2 weeks ago

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