This brief account of Bill English’s appearance on TV3’s “The Nation” yesterday summarises a classic collection of Nat lines, lies and spin:
‘Opportunities’ haven’t closed income gap – English
Finance Minister Bill English has admitted in the last three years, the Government has failed to close the gap between the rich and the poor.
Speaking to The Nation’s Duncan Garner, Mr English said the gap was “roughly the same” as it was three years ago.
“Roughly” the same means “not” the same, doesn’t it. In fact the gap is widening again under National.
Just 151 of the richest New Zealanders increased their wealth by $7 billion this year. In contrast even John Key admits that the underclass is growing again. The pay gap between bosses and workers is widening. There are 60,000 more people on benefits, 50% more unemployed, 32,000 more lids living in benefit dependent families in NZ since the Nats took office. Charities’ food handouts are at record levels after government cuts. It’s no wonder that a record number of Kiwis are leaving for Australia. Yeah – the gap between poor and rich is widening all right. And everyone knows it.
He rejected Mr Garner’s claim that the Government’s tax cuts had widened the gap between rich and poor, by delivering $151 a week into the hands of people on $150,000 a year, but only $16 for those on $30,000.
Mr English said his data showed that incomes for the top 10 percent of earners had actually come down during the recession.
Like the 151 richest who are up $7 Billion? Show us the data!
He said instead of increasing minimum wage and extending In Work tax credits like Labour is proposing, National instead focuses on creating “opportunities”.
“It’s our aim to provide them with opportunity,” says Mr English.
Creating “opportunities” is Tory speak for doing nothing. Nothing practical, nothing concrete, nothing that makes a difference. These “opportunities” are as fictional and as vacuous as the 170,000 “new jobs” that the Nats have promised to “create” for the last two budgets in a row. Where are the “opportunities” when thousands of people queue for jobs at a new supermarket? It needs to be a Tui billboard: Creating Opportunities? Yeah Right.