Cutting holes in the safety net

Written By: - Date published: 9:35 am, May 8th, 2012 - 11 comments
Categories: benefits, jobs - Tags:

The Nats’ welfare cuts will cost $500m over 4 years. Supposedly save a billion. Net saving: $125m a year. 1% of benefit costs. 1/8th of the cost of extra beneficiaries under National. Won’t really save even that little. No jobs. Unemployment rising. National’s problem is it tries to save costs of the welfare safety net by cutting holes in the net. The real solution is to stop people falling in. Best welfare policy is a jobs policy.

11 comments on “Cutting holes in the safety net”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    That’s how they closed the loopholes of the 33% trust tax rate vs 38% personal rate: just remove the difference.

    That’s how they closed the loopholes around gift duty: just remove it.

    I applaud them for (apparently) closing loopholes around personal income going into a family trust allowing the recipient to claim for WFF, but question why they didn’t also apply that very same approach to stopping student allowance rorting that goes on, mostly amongst the wealthy apparently. Maybe instead of capping it for 4 years they could’ve just stopped the top 5% rorting it.

  2. Tom Gould 2

    Free contraceptives for ‘the benes’ has worked. The ‘boat people’ thing failed to bite. Then the ‘lazy students’ thing only partly worked. But this latest shot and knocking Banks off the front page? Third time lucky, eh, Mr Textor. Now they can pay the invoice.

  3. Bob R 3

    In terms of stopping people falling in I’m surprised at Sue Bradford’s attitude to free contraception. Contraception is one of the most effective means of reducing female poverty.

    • fatty 3.1

      Like anyone with a brain, Bradford is pro free contraception. What she is against is the way women beneficiaries are targeted and also the underlying message that this kind of policy produces; “unemployed people do not deserve to reproduce”.

      “Contraception is one of the most effective means of reducing female poverty.”

      Sadly, that statement is true within our current climate where welfare is used as a weapon to economically subjugate, enslave and trap beneficiaries. Those who are victims of an underfunded welfare system are then used to drive down wages and perpetuate inequality throughout society. However, contraception cannot be considered the most effective means of reducing female poverty. Ending sexist neoliberial polices and challenging social ignorance (which you have just blessed us with) is the first step to reducing female poverty. Jobs might also help.

    • Dr Terry 3.2

      Contraception by the State? (or, abortion through the State)? Think about it.

  4. Maui 4

    Zetetic: +1

  5. Uturn 5

    “The Welfare net”? Makes it sound like people are jumping in of their own free will, for kicks. Some are pushed, by the same who despise the net; some fall straight from the womb, pushed by social prejudice, but don’t realise they are falling; some have it thrown over them when the choice becomes entrapment or homelessness.

    No one in power does anything to address the myriad influences that create and surround “the poor” or “beneficiaries”. It’s just numbers and dollars. All happens in a vacuum, apparently. What about those irresponsible bludgers, huh? Better give them 300 more pokies, otherwise they’ll just find another addicition.

    Hearing rich comfortable people talking about “the poor” is starting to sound to me like Brittney Spears singing about how hard life is.

  6. Johnny 6

    Like the PM said the Government is putting the sex lives of young beneficiaries back into their own hands.

    “Prime Minister John Key told TV3’s Firstline programme that young people often engaged in sexual activity and the Government was trying to make sure the outcome was in their hands.”

    McCully has volunteered to be the first Government Minister to see what these newly empowered hands can come up with.

  7. Draco T Bastard 7

    Best welfare policy is a jobs policy.

    But if the government went around creating jobs then John Key wouldn’t be able to keep his promise to the rich pricks to lower wages.

  8. fender 8

    These fools are happy to waste 500 million over 4 years and spend nothing to create jobs.

    What a bunch of idiots. Then again if their aim is to justify selling assets by wasting money on crap they are doing well, and it gives their RWNJ followers a warm fuzzy feeling to bash beneficiaries so it’s two birds with one 500 million dollar stone for these fuckwits.

  9. Georgecom 9

    The odious factor about all of the Government dealings with social welfare is the narrative that sits around their actions.

    If Key et al framed it truthfully they’d be saying along the lines of, ‘most people on benefits would like to work, we understand that. The economy isn’t delivering the jobs to get them off welfare. If the economy improves we believe that many people will voluntarily be out working. What we can do is assist the harder cases into jobs if and when they appear’.

    Key and co are not saying that however. There appears an under current of stating how much social welfare costs NZ, how beneficiaries are a drain on the country. Without needing to directly attach beneficiaries, they set the tone for others to go that bit further and claim that a majority of beneficiaries are lazy, worthless, wanting to be on the dole etc etc. Keys narrative sets up and does nothing to discourage that attitude.

    Without being exact on what it is, I’d describe that attitude as ignorant, petty and mean spirited. Somehow by beneficiaries getting the small amount they do, the ignorant, petty mean spirited somehow think they are missing out. Every petty, ignorant commentator ‘knows someone’ who is ‘ripping off the system’, ‘bludging’, ‘breeding on the DPB’ etc etc. The sole ‘someone’ becomes the case study to allow an entire class of people to be judged and labelled.

    The governments framing is odious. The manner in which they leave open the door for ignorance and prejudice to come forth is odious. The ignorant, petty, mean spirited and selfish mentality of the kiwi benefit basher is also odious.

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