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A New Year’s wish

Written By: - Date published: 7:23 am, December 26th, 2007 - 35 comments
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As a kid growing up in the countryside I recall being startled by the realisation that there were people in the world who had never seen a farm animal of any description. How one-dimensional and narrow their view of the world must be, I thought.

Another aspect of life in rural New Zealand, which I came to appreciate from an early stage, was the idea that we all live in a community where the benefits of sharing things and looking out for each other should be regarded as a virtue. These ideas even seemed to cross the political divide where Labour supporters generally expressed it in terms of social justice and public service, while National voters seemed prepared to nurture communities in a similar way to the manner in which they nurtured their own families, schools, businesses or farms. If there was a political difference it appeared to be more simply between National’s conservativisim and Labour’s more egalitarian doctrines, although even that could be blurred.

Perhaps as startling to me, as the realisation about farm animals, came the realisation that there were some within our communities who do not believe in the time-honoured notion that people need to look out for each other. The rights and strivings of the individual should be regarded as king, even when set against the greater good of the wider community. In its toughest guise, this is a dog-eat-dog scenario and as such, naturally sits as support for a minority of people who may stand to benefit most. These are the people who proclaim themselves as ‘winners’ on the basis that ‘losers’ can be dismissed as weak and pathetic. Most obviously these people now hail from the ACT party but, as Nicky Hager’s Hollow Men attests, it is now firmly entrenched at the National party’s top table as well.

As with those who had missed out on some of life’s basic experiences, such as seeing a cow, it seemed to me that the views of many of these people simply mirrored the narrowness of their own life experiences & John Key, the bond dealer or Don Brash, the banker, immediately spring to mind.

If this trait does hold sway in modern National, when attempting to win elections, the major question for National is how to present an acceptable face to an electorate which fundamentally holds ‘community’ as its core value-set? The answer is obvious; they do it by appealing to the other side of human nature & the ‘self-interest’ side in all of us & ‘opportunity’ and ‘aspiration’, with an appeal to most peoples’ desire for individual freedom and to get ahead. But they also do it through deceit and under a veneer of ‘inclusiveness’ all the time withholding true policy positions & well canvassed in earlier posts in The Standard.

Of course, as the recent polls indicate, the philosophical battle also poses a problem for Labour. As seems the pattern in New Zealand electoral cycles the electorate, after three terms, is increasingly regarding Labour in government as ‘self-serving’ and out-of-touch in rapidly changing times. Maybe this can be partly attributed to the government’s own misreading of the electorate, but more likely it’s the result of a restive electorate searching once more for a party that can properly express a deeply held value-set based upon ‘inclusiveness.’

In the modern age perhaps a different way is needed to express the freedoms that individuals rightly crave, whilst retaining the overwhelming need for inclusiveness and a strong sense of community.

In a recent television documentary I heard a family councilor put it this way;

“We should wish for everyone to have the same opportunities to make choices in life.”

If Helen Clark said this, it would be believable. If John Key said it, it’s what we might expect, but we should only believe half of it.

Happy New Year.

35 comments on “A New Year’s wish ”

  1. djp 1

    And there are those who believe in the principal of looking out for ones brother but would rather put it into practice in their own way. Also some people have a higher regard for the principal of liberty and do not want to force their own ideas and methods on others.

    Also there are those who see that some are very keen to give others money away but reluctant when it comes to their own (see the speech “Not yours to give” by Davy Crockett -> http://www.house.gov/paul/nytg.htm , especially the last paragraph).

  2. Santi 2

    “.. it seemed to me that the views of many of these people simply mirrored the narrowness of their own life experiences & John Key, the bond dealer or Don Brash, the banker, ..”

    You forgot to add to the above list the names of Michael Cullen, professor of history; Helen Clark, academic, lecturer and professional politician; Cath Tizard accomplished good-for-nothing; Margaret Wilson, university academic; Mark Goesche and Rick Barker, lifetime unionists; etc.

  3. Z K Muggletonspofin 3

    There can be no denying the need for politicians of all hues to come from a wider and deeper background of experiences. But also pause for a moment and consider the breadth of understanding that surely exists among teachers, unionists and history professors? The present, and immediate past National leader, struggle with these credentials, which is probably why farmer, Bill English, sits above these people when it comes to understanding human issues.

  4. burt 4

    Z K Muggletonspofin

    As with those who had missed out on some of life’s basic experiences, such as seeing a cow, it seemed to me that the views of many of these people simply mirrored the narrowness of their own life experiences

    You talk about narrow mindedness while describing an idyllic childhood where you could not understand how people could not have seen a cow. Now get me wrong, I’ve seen cows, hand milked them for the family, slaughtered them, eaten them, herded them and been chased by them. But imagine how a child who’s daily life is not skipping around the meadows smelling the fresh country air and living in the lap of natures goodness would compare for worldly experiences to you.

    It’s great to hear that you had a charmed upbringing, you are fortunate. An old friend of mine who many years ago, in a place a long way from rural NZ, watched her grandparents being dragged onto the street and shot for supporting the wrong political party.

    I think her experiences taught here a lot more about life and left her a lot less narrow minded than little of farmer boy Muggletonspofin.

    To make a leap from ‘has not seen a cow’ to ‘doesn’t care about others’… WTF are you on?

  5. Santi 5

    “We should wish for everyone to have the same opportunities to make choices in life.”

    Very nice. I agree with the overall sentiment.

    But what about those embarked on extinguishing individual responsiblity (e.g., the ability to make those choices in life and pay for the consequences)? Your beloved Helen Clark is one of these people, fostering a growing number of mediocrities and non-entitities, an underclass with no aspiration other than being supported by the state.

    The future for our country is bleak, indeed.

  6. Z K Muggletonspofin 6

    Santi, while one is talking about a bleak future for the country, the history academic, Michael Cullen could probably illuminate you about the past being a useful predictor for the future. Based on the performance of the economy, unemployment, business profits, the share market, international relations, etc, etc, how do you think the history of the National Party went between 1990 and 1999, as compared with Labour between 1999 and now? Please be honest and think again about the future under National.

  7. Santi 7

    ZK. you are either illiterate on economic matters or very mischievious.

    Forget about the Nats, of whom I’m no fan of. Cast your mind back to the economic reforms of the late 80s and 90s and you’ll find there the reasons for the success of the late 90 and 21st century. The removal of tariffs, the dismantling of bloated controls, the selling of assets and privatisation of money-losing companies, among others are the reason why Cullen is experiencing the longest boom period of recent years.

    To NZ’s benefit, international markets, beyond control of historian Cullen, are paying the highest prices ever for commodities such as dairy and meat.

    How does that boom translated internally? Have we climbed up the OECD rankings? Have we improved health and education beyond doubt? Of course not.

    The Labour Party is determined to give benefits to those who don’t even need them (Working for Families, being a prime example), in expanding the welfare net to secure votes in elections to come.

    It has squandered the money and opportunity by trying to socialise New Zealand.

  8. “Cast your mind back to the economic reforms of the late 80s and 90s and you’ll find there the reasons for the success of the late 90 and 21st century.”

    This presumably explains why we’re doing so much better than countries which lagged behind on such reforms, eg Australia? Most of the EU? Hell, just about any OECD country?

  9. Phil 9

    My parents both grew up in rural area’s as well, and fully subscribe to the ‘looking out for others’ view too. However, they’re dyed-in-the-wool National supporters (pun intended).

    Their logic goes as follows; we’re fully capaable of looking after our own family/community/social-grouping by ourselves, so the government should bugger off and leave us alone.

  10. Spectator 10

    The Labour Party is determined to give benefits to those who donâ€Ââ„¢t even need them (Working for Families, being a prime example)

    Well, damn those evil communistic tax cuts. Thank goodness your precious National Party aren’t promising to cut anyone’s taxes. Or… are they?

  11. Phil 11

    ZK,

    The most important thing that I’ve learn’t from history is this; Correlation does not equal Cause-and-Effect.

    Blaming all our social ill’s on a political party (and the same goes for credit of social improvement) makes about as much sense as blaming Henry Ford for drive-by shootings.

  12. Ruth 12

    This lead post would have to be one of the silliest on this blog.

    Burt is correct – correlating one not having seen a cow ( a COW for heaven’s sake), with lack of life experience is ridiculous.

    There are plenty of kids in Sth Auckland who have not seen a cow or been over the Harbour Bridge – instead of moaning about it why don’t you actually do something about it?

    I know a gentleman who takes disadvantaged kids on farm visits. I deal with marginalised teens myself.

    Blaming John Key and National for all of society’s ills is simply laughable.

  13. Outofbed 13

    Ruth I think you have missed the point ?

  14. Linda Axford 14

    I found this post confusing, ZK, too much sherry in the trifle perhaps? I just don’t see your point about the farm animals and rural life in general.
    I think believing that people who hadn’t seen a farm animal before as having a narrow and one-dimensional view of the world is, in fact, just that (or did you just believe this as a child?).

    aladin

  15. Kimble 15

    “If Helen Clark said this, it would be believable. If John Key said it, it’s what we might expect, but we should only believe half of it.”

    Yeah, because the left is all about equality of opportunity not equality of outcome. Wait…

    So if HC says it, it must be true. But if JK says it, he must be lying. Wow, you are beyond a joke.

  16. Linda Axford 16

    Also, as a child, we lived right on the Pacific Ocean, and from our balcony we could watch the grey whales migrate up the coast with their young every year. I never thought as a child, that people who didn’t witness this had a ‘one dimensional and and narrow view’ of the world, I just thought I was ‘lucky’.

    aladin

  17. Linda Axford 17

    ok, I’ll stick my neck out here: Rural life is to be avoided unless you are there voluntarily: the most racist, sexist, bigoted, pro-smackers and conservative people I have ever met have come from the country. What’s up with you, The Standard, or did I miss the point completely?

    aladin

  18. dad4justice 18

    My new years wish is the total destruction of the Labour / Green /NZ First political parties as many of their members should be in prison for corruption and deception !!!

  19. burt 19

    Outofbed

    Ruth I think you have missed the point ?

    So what is the point?

  20. Michele Cabiling 20

    “These ideas even seemed to cross the political divide where Labour supporters generally expressed it in terms of social justice …”

    Could someone define “social justice”?

    From where I sit it looks like plundering the earned wealth of some for the unearned benefit of others.

    If I take my neighbour’s wallet without his express consent, that’s called ‘theft.’ If my neighbour is a little bigger than me and disinclined to yield me his wallet, so I get my mates in the Mongrel Mob to go around and take it for me, that’s still ‘theft.’

    So how come when it’s done by Big Government spouting altruistic waffle, most people have been gulled into seeing it as ‘social redistribution’ rather than ‘theft,’ as it really is.

    Put another way, “Is rape OK?” Most of us would say that it isn’t. “Why is rape wrong?” Most of us would say rape is wrong because it involves the unauthorised use of someone else’s body.

    “Well, couldn’t rape sometimes be justified, say, if a man had just got out of jail after 20 years of enforced sexual abstinence, and therefore derived greater utility from the rape than the detriment suffered by his victim? “Never!” I hear you say.

    Similarly, to steal the fruits of someone’s labour, on the basis that “they have too much anyway,” and that someone else would derive more assumed utility from them than the rightful owner, is a form of rape.

    Socialists have the same mentality as rapists, albeit in the economic sphere. They assume that other people’s lives and productivity are theirs, unconditionally, to command without permission of the people being used, or commanded through permission from others susceptible to being used, or with permission derived from leftist sociopolitical theories. There is an assumed right to arbitrary confiscation or transfer of ownership of anything.

  21. Kimble 21

    The difference, Michele, is that the government has been given a mandate to tax by the citizens of NZ. By remaining in the country you tacitly agree to the taxation laws.

    Social Justice is usually just code for the original users definition of “fair”. If they consider someone earning over $100k unfair, then social justice demands their income be appropriated.

    If someone loses their job because they are incompetent and are costing more money than they are earning their employer, social justice demands that they be reinstated with an increase in pay.

  22. Matthew Pilott 22

    If someone loses their job because they are incompetent and are costing more money than they are earning their employer, social justice demands that they be reinstated with an increase in pay.

    Don’t worry Michele, Kimble’s ignorance is shining through here, this is just plain bullshit espoused by those who believe that employers’ rights are paramount and that employees have no status over and above their status as an employee.

    If employers are too stupid to give an employee a written warning, followed by a dismissal, then what can they expect? Unlike the myth prepetuated by the ignorant Right, it’s not hard to dismiss an employee in New Zealand; they just think the rest of us are too stupid to figure it out. Miserable really.

    Michele, many, if not all, people wish to live in a thriving society. There are difering views as to how this can be achieved.

    One is that with a minimum of government intervention, people will do the best they can, and those that fail in one way or another can, well, go fuck themselves, basically. And their kids can suffer too. They might turn to crime to support themselves, which is why law & order is such a big thing for people who hold this view – it’s a way to suppress those who fail to make it, and keep them from spoilint the rosy views of the wealthy. I mean if you’re earning a few million a year, do you really want to have to step over the homeless on the streets? Of course not! And those gated communities will keep the rabble off your driveways – that’s fine, you can afford the guards. But society is better off right? Because you’re doing well, and that’s what counts. The others? They’re just lazy, of course.

    Other views hold that with government intervention, a more equitable society can be maintained, and this is to everyone’s benefit. Government intervention is usually along the lines of what you’ve termed social justice. It’s an attempt to maintain a decent minimum level of society for all.

  23. Phil 23

    Hey Matthew, do you want a match to light up that enormous straw man you’ve just built there?

    It’s no suprise that a large chunk of NZ voters are being turned off left-of-centre politics, when the most vocal supporters, such as yourself, have those kinds of views

  24. Matthew Pilott 24

    Phil, do you want to repond, or blabber on about straw men, displaying an abject lack of knowledge of the term?

    I know it’s only the 8th of January, shall I wait a few days to see if your sense of humour returns, I know it can be hard..

  25. Kimble 25

    Wow, yup, you nailed us, we dont care about people at all, we are all nasty, rich demons from the depths of hell who thrive on the misery of others.

    I give you dorks the benefit of the doubt; you actually care about people and want to help them. I dont think there are many people in this world who dont. But you cant extend the same courtesy to you opponents can you?

    So, go fuck yourself, Matthew. You obviously havent got the first clue what we believe in or stand for, and you seem to revel in your ignorance.

    You are a bigot, and are so blinded by irrational hatred that you will probably never be able to see past your bigotry.

  26. Phil 26

    Watch out Kimble – the next line from Matthew will be something about how the National Party doesn’t even know what the National Party stands for!

    =)

    Matthew, I would suggest that a brief trip to dictionary.com will relieve you of your belief that I don’t know what a ‘straw man’ is – and it is exactly the kind of tool you’ve used repeatedly on this very website.

    I do however realise that without the mythical fantasy beast of pure capitalist evil you think all National supporters are, you would have no reason to live. As such, I’m willing to humour you in this case, purely because someone would have to take time out of their otherwise productive day, to clean up the mess you would invariably leave behind.

  27. Matthew Pilott 27

    Kimble, that’s a bit rich coming from the person who just said “Social Justice is usually just code for the original users definition of “fair”. If they consider someone earning over $100k unfair, then social justice demands their income be appropriated.

    and

    If someone loses their job because they are incompetent and are costing more money than they are earning their employer, social justice demands that they be reinstated with an increase in pay.

    So, I can only say, go fuck yourself Kimble, you obviously havent got the first clue what we believe in or stand for, and you seem to revel in your ignorance.

    You are a bigot, and are so blinded by irrational hatred that you will probably never be able to see past your bigotry.

    Perhaps try and recognise sarcasm and hyperbole for what it is, if you are able to see through your bigotry, Kimble.

    Phil, it was clearly a pisstake – why didn’t you ask your angry pal Kimble if he wanted a match too? You guys are pretty slow today.

  28. Phil 28

    Sorry Matthew, but with all this corrosive and cancerous talk of haters and wreckers, it’s hard to see where the pissing ends and the pot begins…

  29. Michele Cabiling 29

    Kimble wrote:

    “The difference, Michele, is that the government has been given a mandate to tax by the citizens of NZ. By remaining in the country you tacitly agree to the taxation laws.”

    State-sponsored theft remains theft.

    Social Justice is usually just code for the original users definition of “fair”. If they consider someone earning over $100k unfair, then social justice demands their income be appropriated.

    For people to earn money in a free market economy based on the value they add for others is neither “fair” nor “unfair,” it’s simply a fact of life.

    To assert that people should be penalised to the extent of their success in doing this is simply legalising plunder.

    The great 19th Century French political philosopher, Frederic Bastiat had this to say about the moral legitimacy of such behaviour:

    “What, then, is law? It is the collective organisation of the individual right to lawful defense.

    “Each of us has a natural right–from God–to defend his person, his liberty, and his property. These are the three basic requirements of life, and the preservation of any one of them is completely dependent upon the preservation of the other two. For what are our faculties but the extension of our individuality? And what is property but an extension of our faculties?

    “If every person has the right to defend — even by force — his person, his liberty, and his property, then it follows that a group of men have the right to organise and support a common force to protect these rights constantly. Thus the principle of collective right — its reason for existing, its lawfulness — is based on individual right. And the common force that protects this collective right cannot logically have any other purpose or any other mission than that for which it acts as a substitute. Thus, since an individual cannot lawfully use force against the person, liberty, or property of another individual, then the common force — for the same reason — cannot lawfully be used to destroy the person, liberty, or property of individuals or groups.

    “Such a perversion of force would be, in both cases, contrary to our premise. Force has been given to us to defend our own individual rights. Who will dare to say that force has been given to us to destroy the equal rights of our brothers? Since no individual acting separately can lawfully use force to destroy the rights of others, does it not logically follow that the same principle also applies to the common force that is nothing more than the organised combination of the individual forces?

    “If this is true, then nothing can be more evident than this: The law is the organization of the natural right of lawful defense. It is the substitution of a common force for individual forces. And this common force is to do only what the individual forces have a natural and lawful right to do: to protect persons, liberties, and properties; to maintain the right of each, and to cause justice to reign over us all.”

    As well, what give you (or indeed anyone else) the mandate to decide whether someone’s income is “fair” or “unfair”?

    The authoritarian socialism behind such notions deserves to be mercilessly deconstructed. It has a dishonourable intellectual pedigree dating back to Ancient Greece and Plato’s Republic written around 360BC. Plato regarded mankind as essential stupid and wicked. Fortunately, a few individuals are better, wiser and kinder than their fellow men. They have a natural right (and indeed a duty) to ascend to power and nobly order everyone else around for their own good.

    Bastiat had this to say on the subject:

    “If the natural tendencies of mankind are so bad that it is not safe to permit people to be free, how is it that the tendencies of these organisers are always good? Do not the legislators and their appointed agents also belong to the human race? Or do they believe that they themselves are made of a finer clay than the rest of mankind?

    “The organisers maintain that society, left undirected, rushes headlong to its inevitable destruction because the instincts of the people are so perverse. The legislators claim to stop this suicidal course and to give it a saner direction. Apparently, then, the legislators and the organisers have received from Heaven an intelligence and virtue that place them beyond and above mankind; if so, let them show their titles to this superiority.”

    Just because you like to engage in moral preening funded by others confers no mandate to steal from them.

    Two kinds of intellectuals are pushing the essentially Marxist (“From each according to his ability, to each according to his need”) agendas that lie behind this. The first is a numerically small hard-core left wing activist class that derives a sense of intellectual superiority from knowing it is manipulating the situation. The second consists of large numbers of passive enablers who have unwittingly embraced socialist doctrines, largely because their leftist professors ensured that they were never exposed to intellectual alternatives.

    Friedrich Hayek describes this second group as “the docile and gullible, who have no strong convictions of their own, but are prepared to accept a ready-made system of values if it is only drummed into them sufficiently loudly and often enough.” Having internalised the system of values on which their membership of “club virtue” depends, they have a strong emotional resistance to having it questioned. With people like these, you either agree with them, or you are racist, sexist, homophobic, uneducated, uninformed, or just plain stupid.

    US political columnist Joe Sobran uses the metaphor of a hive of bees, united by a kind of “group mind,” to describe the informal body of leftist opinion making up this “useful idiot” class. “There’s no central direction as such, but the bees can sense an enemy, and know when to attack.”

    Sobran says, “To become a bee in this hive is to surrender, voluntarily and eagerly, your own personality: to submerge the self in a collectivity; to prefer the buzzing cliche of the group to individual thought and expression; to take satisfaction in belonging and conforming to a powerful mass while punishing others for failure to conform … The similarity to an insect colony — where the individual exists only functionally, being both indistinguishable from and interchangeable with its fellows — is not superficial, it is of the essence. To be an insect is to be relieved of the burden of having a soul of your own.”

    Political scientist Eric Hoffer is another who provides a penetrating insight into the collectivist mentality. Hoffer saw that mass-movements are an outlet for people whose individual significance is miniscule in the eyes of the world and –more important — in their own eyes. He pointed out that the leaders of the Nazi movement were men whose artistic and intellectual aspirations were wholly frustrated, as were the Bolshevik leaders.

    Those drawn to collectivist ideologies are invariably people with a pressing need for self-inflation and ego-boosting (generally in the absence of any real claims in that direction). As Hoffer makes clear: “The less justified a man is in claiming excellence for his own self, the more ready he is to claim excellence for his nation, his religion, his race, or his holy cause.”

    People who are fulfilled in their own lives and careers are unlikely to be attracted to mass movements: “A man is likely to mind his own business when it worth minding,” Hoffer said. “When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people’s business.”

  30. Kimble 30

    The truth is, the term “social justice” is often used exactly as I described. If someone considers something unfair, then remedying it is considered social justice.

    Those were two examples from real life where the term “social justice” has been used explicitly. Someone saw something “unfair” and decided that it offended their sense of “social justice”.

    There is nothing obectionable in anything I wrote to Michele, you just decided to go off the deep-end and let everyone know how much you hate anyone that thinks different to you. You arent even willing to give them the benefit of the doubt that they genuinely care about people. No. Anyone who disagrees with you is evil and mean.

    You can try and call your response hyperbole and sarcasm after the fact, but there is NOTHING in what you wrote that would indicate this.

  31. Michele Cabiling 31

    Kimble wrote:

    “The truth is, the term ‘social justice’ is often used exactly as I described. If someone considers something unfair, then remedying it is considered social justice.”

    My underlying questions are “What’s ‘unfair'” and “Who decides?”

    My underlying point is that there’s not a single ‘do gooder’ who does not believe that they, and they alone, know what’s best for everyone.

    This only becomes a problem when such people gain sufficient power through the political process to impose their views on other people. That’s what Frederick Bastiat means by “organised plunder.” This is where a group of people, abetted by those claiming to speak on their behalf, combine to vote themselves the property and income of others.

    And it is this state-sponsored theft that a correctly functioning political system should operate to prevent.

    Before the Great Depression of the 1930s, welfare provision operated through the mechanisms of civil society, such as Friendly Societies taking voluntary contributions from workers, and local parish churches taking voluntary contributions from churchgoers.

    This system worked very well, underpinned by the concept of “deserving poor.” The local parish almoner knew everyone who would be coming to him for help, and was familiar with their personal circumstances. Those who genuinely needed assistance would get it, but the lazy, spendthrift, habitual drunkard, or gambler might be helped once, then told in no uncertain terms to modify their behaviour or starve.

    The Depression temporarily overloaded civil society’s ability to meet community needs, so the government was obliged to institute “relief work.” Unemployed men received a taxpayer-provided stipend to live in tent cities during the working week and plant pine trees or marram grass in erosion-prone coastal areas, build roads in remote areas, or dig ditches etc.

    Even though these guys were working for their pay, there was still a social stigma attached to being “on the dole” or “on relief.”

    When the Labour Party introduced the Welfare State in 1938, the world (and New Zealand) economy was pulling out of the Depression, and the institutions of civil society could have readily resumed their former role in voluntary welfare provision.

    Labour took advantage of the situation to replace the institutions of civil society with those of a statist society, telling the public “the Great Depression must never happen again” and “we need a safety net in place to ensure it doesn’t.”

    World War II intervened and in the 1946 General Election, National accepted the existence of the Welfare State uncontested. Since then, the two main parties have been Tweedledum and Tweedledee, with political debate centring around who could better manage the Welfare State.

    As recently as the early 1970s, there were less than 10, 000 people on welfare nationwide, and the notion of “deserving poor” still prevailed. Labour Prime Minister, Norman Kirk told the nation in 1972: “We need to keep the ropes of the welfare safety net stretched tight, so that anyone who falls through the cracks bounces straight back up into the community again.”

    The ropes were soon to slacken, and the safety net turn into a hammock. In 1973, a Royal Commission chaired by a retired judge, Thaddeus McCarthy, reported back to Parliament. The Commission made a number of socially subversive recommendations that were enthusiatically adopted by the Labour Government of the day.

    For the first time in New Zealand’s social history, we had a “no fault” welfare system, in which welfare became a universal entitlement, irrespective of personal contribution to one’s circumstances.

    On the Commission’s recommendation, benefit levels were raised so that beneficiaries could “participate fully in the life of the community.” This disturbed the relativity between wages in unskilled work and the money received on a benefit, thus operating as a disincentive for those of a certain mentality to move into paid employment.

    Leftards are abysmally ignorant of even basic economics. People respond to incentives. Reward a particular behavior and you will get more of it. Penalise it and you will get less. Simple, right?

    A 17 year old youth contemplating an hour’s travel each way to work 40 hard hours a week in all weathers as a farmhand might consider two options:

    [1] After meeting travel expenses and other costs, he might be $60.00 per week ahead of the dole; or

    [2] He could go on a benefit, go surfing every day, and grow a bit of dope in the windowsill to sell at the pub to make up the shortfall.

    In the wake of the McCarthy Commission’s report, Labour also introduced the DPB, helped along by pressure from its radical feminist wing. Initially intended as a stop-gap measure to assist women who’d been deserted by their husbands and left unsupported with children, recipient numbers were never expected to exceed 7, 000 at any one time.

    A 17 year old female in a rural town leaving school with no qualifications and wanting to get out of home to run her own life might consider two options:

    [1] 40 hours a week of hard work on the checkout of the local supermarket for maybe $240.00 net including a rostered late night when she’d prefer to be partying with friends and an early start on Saturday morning when she’d prefer to be recovering from the night before; or

    [2] Have a child, go on the DPB and receive $320.00 in the hand, a cheap state house, and topups and grants for everything imaginable.

    As well, the DPB militates against relationship formation. Assuming a notional 50: 50 split of his wages with his female partner, a 17 year old male would need to be earning in excess of $700.00 net week to make his income more viable to his partner than the DPB. Few guys this age earn more than $400.00 a week. If he never gives her money, spends too much time with his mates, or there are other relationship difficulties, the incentive for her is to go on the DPB, because she is better off financially, and gets full control of the money. As well, should being a parent prove too onerous, he can walk away from his parental responsibilities using the rationalisation that the DPB will take care of them.

    The message received from the feminist movement and reinforced by the DPB is that young women can go it alone and men are just not needed. The problem is that love is not raised in taxes or dispensed by government bureaucrats. There is a wealth of social research demonstrating that children growing up without fathers figure disproportionately in every indicator of social pathology.

    Even young, unskilled women can do the math. DPB recipient numbers long ago exceeded 100, 000.

    Huge number of able-bodied young men appear in Court every Monday charged with crimes such as fighting and climbing up drainpipes to rob old ladies, giving their occupation as “sickness beneficiary.” They’re not sick, it’s just the thought of working that makes them feel ill.

    Welfare coddles gang members to prey on the community. It coddles “artists” to produce “art” that nobody wants to buy in a free market.

    The inescapable conclusion is that Labour’s long term strategy is to chain as many people as possible to the state, then promise them ever-increasing amounts of other people’s money to stay on welfare and keep voting Labour.

    Once this parasite class achieves something approaching critical mass it becomes a powerful constituency that no politician can afford to offend.

    The debate we need to have is not about “management” of the welfare state, but about whether the state belongs in welfare provision at all. Insulating people from corrective reality by allowing them to impose the cost of personal irresponsibility on others in the community is an ever-growing problem begging to be addressed.

    If a young woman showed up on one’s doorstep amnnouncing that she was 15 years old, pregnant, had no idea which of four guys she’d dropped her panties to in the last month was the dad, and informing you that you’d be supporting her, the kid, and any subsequent offspring she might have until the youngest turned 18, most of us would laugh in her face and tell her to go home to her parents.

    But through the welfare system, her personal irresponsibility is incentivised, rewarded, and the costs passed on to others in the community.

    There’s nothing “compassionate” or wise about doing this. All it does is afford leftards who want to engage in moral preening using other people’s money the opportunity to do so.

  32. Matthew Pilott 32

    Sorry Kimble, there is a whole lot objectionable in what you wrote, equally as in mine. If you fail to see that, you have illustrated my point perfectly (a point, incidentally, that you made, a la bigot).

    And then to back it up, you claim I’ve gone off the deep end, after I wrote a piss-take version of affairs under the extreme right, which was about on a par with your pathetic take on social justice. I think going off the deep end is being, as Phil said, a cancerous and corrosive ‘hater and wrecker’, using such prases as “fuck you” and “you’re a bigot”.

    You really walked into that one you idiot. And if you think those examples are true and accurate examples of social justice, and not the hyperbole that a rabid bigot would give when attacking the left, then you’ve truly gone off the deep end.

  33. Phil 33

    A word of advice Michele;

    less dissertations, more punchy straight-to-the-point one paragraph stuff.

    I think I speak for most readers when I say that I didn’t bother reading your last two posts beacuse they were simply too long… plus, you don’t want to earn a reputation as the ‘new Kimble’

  34. Michele Cabiling 34

    New Zealand has thousands of children being raised by mothers not much older than the children. When the children are being raised by 16 year olds, they are being raised to have eventual maturity levels approximating the maturity of the mothers, and raised under the level of maturity and value system in which they were created. They are often being raised in an atmosphere which is a continuation of the values, life styles and level of seriousness under which they were created.

    We are seeing family lines with great grandmothers in their forties, not a single generation of which has had, or has, mature guiding adult influence in their lives.

    It had produced a cultural axis of several generations of impulsive, spoiled kids. But they will vote, they will protest and demonstrate, and they will make demands upon the welfare system. In many cases they will inflict a crime rate upon the rest of society during their path through life.

    Even in those instances when the mothers have any capacity, they will be spread thin in the multiple life demands for their efforts and are going to face economic stress. This is not a workable condition unless the mother is a movie star.

    While there a few women who can do it successfully, most need social assistance according to politicians. Indeed, the politicians are somewhat correct. Unfortunately, social assistance doesn’t reduce the trends and problems. It has only subsidized and perpetuated them.

    It’s long past time to face the fact that the loss of freedom in coercing the people into supporting consequences of the irresponsible lunatic sex lives in this country and the increasing cost of support, will destroy this country.

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