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Aotearoa to little America

Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, November 1st, 2012 - 28 comments
Categories: benefits, capitalism, class war - Tags:

As National cuts services, incomes, and pushes more Kiwi’s into the gutter, their real agenda it seems apart from creating an underclass is removing them from the Government tit, and after that supporting them with charity.

Charity starts at home they say, (if you have one) but the thing about corporate charity now days, is it comes at a price right now in America and the same will apply for Little America (Aotearoa) , for example corporations like McDonalds throw millions at charity and so create a catch 22.

Charity from corporations comes out of your pocket! Charity is a built in cost you pay for with every Big Mac you buy, and corporations see charity as tax free advertising, with the added bonus of being able to lobby & pressure the Government of the day.

Once hooked on charity it becomes hard to kick the habit, a strategy might be to create something the community can’t think of later living without, maybe a child cancer clinic say, then quietly threaten to close it because of new proposed food regulations to curb obesity and diabetes or rising minimum wages, they might also remind you that if they go away, the Government will have to pick up the tab to keep the clinic running. No Government’s going to want to close a child cancer clinic.

Charity could be thought of as asking the rich for money to appease their guilty conscience, as they consciously or unconsciously suspect the underclass is essential to their survival, they will even sit back quiet happy knowing this charity will be distributed by mostly very honest hard working people, people that will work for little or nothing in most circumstances. Better to keep these charity workers busy and in a constant state of fear that tomorrow they won’t be able to feed and shelter the needy, otherwise these people might start asking awkward and embarrassing questions of the Government.

As Karol said recently:

“However, I still don’t follow the logic that the route to a more sustainably productive, fair and inclusive society, is through every country selling stuff to each other.”

And of-course it’s not! and neither is feeding the people with charity from the pockets of the very people that are creating the needy underclass in the first place.


28 comments on “Aotearoa to little America ”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    Return to Philanthropy?

    Philanthropy, we are told, is to replace the welfare state: instead of attempting to redistribute wealth via taxation and democratic planning, austerity politicians are in the process of dispatching with what they view as an irritating relic of working class history. In its place we are informed that we should rely upon the charity of the greediest and most exploitative subset of society, our country’s leading capitalists. A group of individuals whose psychological temperament is better described as psychopathic rather than altruistic.

    Sums it up quite well.

  2. Descendant Of Smith 2

    If they cannot pay their own workers decent wages and give them decent working conditions why does anyone think that giving others a portion of their profit plays a part in redeeming themselves.

    Charity begins at home. Pay your workers more so they can live and help others both in their local communities and via the increased tax take resulting.

    • Marjorie Dawe 2.1

      Not only that but the business owners might find they make more money themselves if they paid decent wages. The basic ideal is that if workers can afford to buy goods, the manufacturers can make and sell more. Adds up to more jobs and more taxes and more profits.

      How stupid are they.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        And that is exactly what the IMF has started saying

        The other distinction I would make is between small business and corporate enterprise. A lot of NZ businesses of 20 employees or less are really struggling in this economy, while the bigger corporates suck billions of dollars out of the economy and ship those profits offshore, out of NZ circulation.

        • blue leopard

          The other distinction I would make is between small business and corporate enterprise.

          I think this comment that you make is very important and can’t be repeated too much.

          I have a sense that some people vote for National believing that they are ‘for’ business and not realising it is massive business interests that they are supportive on. (I’m sure National are entirely happy to keep this “misunderstanding” alive)

          I know people who didn’t vote out of a belief that neither of the two largest parties offered a great deal of anything to address difficulties small business and self employed people face.

          And I don’t see that either National or Labour show any interest in delineating that there is a difference in the issues facing small business as opposed to those of large businesses.

          I take it National are happy to continue this “misunderstanding”
          and Labour? A big question mark. They seem to have checked out and appear happier to squabble amongst themselves than seriously or effectively address any of the myriad issues going on currently.

      • JonL 2.1.2

        “How stupid are they.”

        Apart from a small minority – f*cking stupid!

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.3

        Profit is a dead weight loss and so the more money the capitalists take the faster the economy implodes.

  3. Thanks Mr Smith
    Your article effectively make lucid the power play that corporates indulge in; pushing people into need, creating a situation where people become dependant on them to get these unmet needs (created by them) met (the “charity”), and then threatening to pull the rug of this “charity” if they don’t get what they want.

    Not really charitable at all is it.

  4. fatty 4

    Sorry to link another Zizek video, but its worth a watch…the problem is that charity is an important part of neoliberalism.
    Charity is too often framed as being required due the deficits of individuals, rather than an inhumane system. Even today in NZ where most charities aim for social justice – the system is not critiqued enough. People working within organisations such as the city mission, or the sallies are aware of where the oppression is coming from, but to speak out too much is just biting the hand that feeds them.
    The problem is that our two major parties perpetuate the idea of individual responsibility and blame by pointing the finger at an imaginary painter on the roof.
    I read somewhere once that charity workers should be trying to work themselves out of a job…but this is impossible under our current beliefs where we see need as a result of the individual. We have working people in poverty, and our response is ‘bad decisions’.
    Its a sadistic way of life, and I no longer subscribe to the belief that NZ holds egalitarian ideals. We did when the shit hit the fan for a few decades last century, but I think we need to admit we are a greedy and selfish country. That’s NZ’s real identity, we step on the person below to keep ourselves afloat.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      The neoliberal strategy is to ignore the political economic system as if there are no problems there, and to focus all blame on the individual.

      And when people blame themselves as individuals, they won’t even look at changing the political economic system i.e. they won’t cause problems for the neoliberal status quo.

      David Shearer’s sickness beneficiary meme buys into this neoliberal atomised individualised blame game perfectly.

    • Rogue Trooper 4.2

      helpful analysis and useful big words in these two comments

    • johnm 4.3

      fatty 100% correct!

    • prism 4.4

      On religious and community charities. It is difficult for them to remember where their priorities should lie. There is a temptation for those making price and distribution decisions to want to price things up so they can have more to carry out their charitable works. Yet often those paying for the items are the cash-strapped lower income parents.

      Sometimes they go up market and start refusing furniture if it isn’t new (such as beds) as a charitable outfit in Sydney did some years ago, and others carry similar stock at prices similar to those of legitimate second-hand retailers. Yet their stock has been donated.

      And when talking about philanthropists charity is a word that covers funds for art, collections of antique cars, etc. and not just assistance for assisting people to improve their lives.

  5. fabregas4 5

    I get annoyed every Daffodil Day when the then National bank would spout off about how much they had raised. Well folk like me buying a daffodil actually raised that money and because we paid cash outside the bank our charitble rebate goes bye the bye but then they claim one and get a massive profit and good publicity – and no one tells me how kind I was!

  6. karol 6

    MrSmith said:

    Charity starts at home they say, (if you have one) but the thing about corporate charity now days, is it comes at a price right now in America and the same will apply for Little America (Aotearoa) , for example corporations like McDonalds throw millions at charity and so create a catch 22.

    This to me seems part of a wider unfettered-capitalist Americanisation of NZ.  Americanisation of Aotearoa has been happening for over a century, but accelerated with the 1980s neoliberal shift.  It has sped up even more under the Key government. 
    I recall discussions with some leftish US-ians during the period of the Clark government.  They tended to get very much behind charity initiatives as a humanitarian thing.  Meanwhile at that time, the dominant NZ discourse was more to the left, still valuing our welfare state.
    Another thing to thank Key Inc for.

  7. tracey 7

    In nz if a rich person or company donates $1m we the taxpayers pay them $300,000 back.

    Have donations gone up since this rebate change? And to which charities?

  8. johnm 8

    “As National cuts services, incomes, and pushes more Kiwi’s into the gutter, their real agenda it seems apart from creating an underclass is removing them from the Government tit, and after that supporting them with charity.” They’re copying the neoliberal disaster that is the U$$$$$$$$$$$$$$. It has so much debt it will never ever be paid. 50,000,000 on foodstamps. A prison gulag of over2,000,000 inmates. 80% have sh*t all in any way wealth wise. A two headed one party state run by greedy idiots. Could go on and on and on and here we have Goldman Sachs John, whose never done an honest day’s work in his life importing all that U$$$$ sh*t into NZ so we choke on that sh*t–makes me sick : 🙁

  9. Chalupa Batman 9

    Our music would improve

  10. Reagan Cline 10

    Charity from mCdONALDS (have I spelt it right ?) comes from the pockets of people who buy MCDONALD’S products. I don’t.
    So I’m in the clear.
    But I am tempted to buy shares in Restaurant Brands to offset tax going to publically funded healthcare for diabetic polynesians, in

  11. Reagan Cline 11

    I don’t buy MacDonalds.

  12. Lloyd 12

    Ultimately the objective of the neoliberals seems to be to concentrate ALL the money in the hands of a few multi-billionaires. Then what? There doesn’t seem to an analysis of a future when ALL the money is held by the very rich.

    Surely all markets will close because there is no-one left to buy anything (Well only a few, but a handful of billionaires can’t have personal needs and demands sufficient to drive even a small economy). Result – money will be worthless and the world economic order will collapse. We have seen a partial demonstration of that in the USA in the past two or three years.

    It seems to be in the long-term interest of the richest in a market economy to keep the market going. To do that the poorest need some money to buy things from the businesses of the capitalists. The larger the portion of the economic pie the poor have, the better the market is likely to run. (There are bound to be some constraints relating to the poor having everything, but lets not quibble over details). Giving money to the unemployed and other poorer members of society should not be seen as an obligation to the poor and a ‘charity or a ‘benefit’ to them, rather it should be seen as a benefit to business people in getting that uneven pile of money on their side of the pie back in circulation and an essential for the continuation of any increase in the size of the market and ultimately the wealth of the rich. Lets get rid of the term ‘beneficiary’ and rather introduce a term such as “wealth balancer”. I’m sure someone out here can think of something better that explains the true benefit of redistributing wealth to improve the economy. Once you label something correctly then a lot of the negative publicity about the activity evaporates.

    Redistributing excess money from the richer to the poorer is likely to be far more equitable and transparent if done by taxes and the creation of jobs than as ‘charity’. Don’t the neoliberals keep on about transparency? Creation of jobs by expanding government services would be the quickest way of expanding the job market. Pity the Nats don’t seem to understand any of this….

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Then what?

      After crony capitalism becomes unsustainable, and it becomes widely understood that ‘democracy’ has long since left the building, they will transition society into a neo-feudalism.

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