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Daddy State vs Youth

Written By: - Date published: 2:06 pm, August 15th, 2011 - 72 comments
Categories: john key, unemployment, welfare - Tags: ,

So John Key’s bright shiny new policy to attract the masses is getting tough on the 1600 16 and 17 year-olds who receive benefits. They can’t vote, so there’s no downside for John.  He can grandstand about how they’re spending all their money on booze and ciggies, and how he’ll give them a nice stigmatizing card that will only allow them to buy certain things from certain shops (whether fatty foods will be allowed is as yet uncertain).

Never mind that they aren’t actually allowed to legally buy alcohol and cigarettes at that age anyway. Never mind that you have to prove (to a psychiatrist or similar) a serious disconnect with your parents to get a benefit at that age (or have a child of your own). Never mind that on a $170/week benefit there’s unlikely to be anything left for booze and fags after market rents, power, rates, food etc.

National arrived in power as Labour-lite minus the Nanny State (and change from Helen Clark!). They saved us from the horrors of not being able to buy inefficient incandescent light-bulbs (a change that has brought down the Australian, US and EU economies), and then clearly showed their commitment to their libertarian ideology by banning cellphones when driving.

Now they wish to show how little they want to interfere in people’s lives by micro-managing the budgets of young beneficiaries.

After my highly-critical start, I should make it clear I don’t think that it’s all evil in every word John Key utters. The added support of budgeting and parenting classes would be welcomed by many beneficiaries (and non-beneficiaries!), not just young ones. If you’re going to get by on $170 per week I think anyone would welcome some tips. Similarly having a personal manager (a mentor) would be helpful to have on-call for when tricky problems arise.

The compulsory nature of the classes for a specific group of society makes my liberal heart queasy. Micro-managing budgets, paying their rent and power for them, will not teach them the budgeting skills required. Paying private providers to get them into work will result in youths being pushed into unsuitable jobs – that they’ll get kicked out of after their 90-day trial period – further denting their confidence, but not solving NZ’s youth employment problem (highest rate of youth unemployment in the OECD).

Nine-to-Noon covered it very well this morning, with the very articulate former youth beneficiary Felicity Perry and full-youth-employment Otorohanga’s Mayor Dale Williams.  I thoroughly recommend a listen.  There’s a great quote from the Mayor along the lines of National “seeing youth as a problem to be suppressed, rather than a resource to channel.”  Felicity points out that if you treat them like 10-year-olds, youths are hardly going to feel keen to jump into the adult world.  She also says:

“John Key clearly has no idea what it is like out there.”

But the real policy miss of this is that it’s all about 1600 16 & 17 year-olds receiving taxpayers’ money, when there’s 40,000 under 20s wanting jobs that National aren’t creating – and many more under 25.

Most of the 1600 “problem” youngsters that aren’t already in school (many will be), wouldn’t be a problem if National was creating jobs.  Instead they’re cutting training, reducing young people’s job chances further – risking a lost generation.

National promised before the 2008 election to improve opportunities for our youth.

They’ve failed.

72 comments on “Daddy State vs Youth ”

  1. Policy Parrot 1

    ^^ – what he said.

    • Ianupnorth 1.1

      +1; sad that this will not be in the mainstream radio – I have stopped listening to ‘popular radio’ because all the presenters do is go on about how great Key is.

  2. JS 2

    Those on the IYB or young parents are already likely to have fragile lives in all sorts of ways. Was sickening to hear the National Party privileged cheering further attacks on them. Why do they hate young people so much? What a complete lack of humanity.

    • Carol 2.1

      They probably don’t think it applies to their children or grandchildren… just to those of the powerless classes.

      Like, are John Key’s children ever likely to be the target of this attack on the young unemployed?

      • Deb 2.1.1

        No Carol, as they are hardly likely to leave school unqualified, or if they did they would have unwavering parental support. There would be no need for any of these measures were the targeted kids in this situation themselves

        • Carol

          This also could be true of some kinds on the dole – at least as far as unwavering parental support goes. But if the parents have a lot of money, all the kids would need is financial support and not any kinds of emotional or social support.

          • Jum

            This thread ties in with rioting in Auckland in 1984; a Maori warden stated categorically that ‘she would be asked over and over whether it was street kids and gangs who started the trouble. No, she would say. The young people who hurled bottles and smashed every window in sight were mainly well dressed, from middle-class families.

    • weka 2.2

      They don’t hate young people, they just hate poor and underprivileged young people. Over privileged young people are feted.

    • Treetop 2.3

      When it comes to being on the IYB or the DPB broken trust is usually an issue. To have to trust a stranger with controlling your every day costs may result in worry and anxiety.

  3. Tom Gould 3

    Ben, you are being a little hard on John Key. Have some compassion. Here’s a guy who has been rich for donkey’s years, as long as he can remember, so rich he has to ask how much things like new cars cost, and he simply cannot understand how a bunch of lazy young teenagers living it up on a couple hundy a week can be satisifed to stay like that. Surely they must want to be rich like him? Surely?

  4. Daddy state? Yeah right. I think not.The fact that the National party can only think of giving food stamps to wayward youth is yet another nail in the coffin of a stable New Zealand in the future. Are our government not worried about our appalling rankings on the world stage when it comes to childhood/youth issues? It is alleged that one in three children live in poverty and disgusting child abuse statistics, however children do not seem to be a priority for careless government.

    And we have the cheek to host a rugby world cup. What about kiwi kids John Boy Key you gutless wonder?

  5. queenstfarmer 5

    then clearly showed their commitment to their libertarian ideology by banning cellphones when driving

    If you think National has a libertarian ideology, you’d better get back to Politics 101 pronto.

    • Ben Clark 5.1

      There may have been just a trace of sarcasm in that comment about the gap between some of National’s rhetoric and their reality.

    • felix 5.2

      You miss the meaning of quite a lot of what gets written here, don’t you q?

      • queenstfarmer 5.2.1

        Not at all my friend. It’s merely amusing that when I point out a clear error or illogical comment (ugh, that word “illogical” is tainted thanks to Dr Brash) it’s quickly back-pedalled as something else.

        • bbfloyd

          no queeny… you missed the joke altogether… but i agree that national has never been libertarian.. that doesn’t fit with fascism at all……. does it…

          • rosy

            Strange. I was in a museum at Obersalzberg yesterday. That’s the town that Hitler took over as a second headquarters and used as an example for the ‘real’ Germany in his lead-up to gaining power.

            The museum detailed the rise of Fascism and the parallels in the capitalist world today are painfully apparent. This is not to say that political leaders are going to kill 6 million Jews, or anyone else, but is to say the everyday drip, drip, drip of reducing a section of the population in the eyes of the many allows for more an more punitive actions to be heaped on this group until they have no place at all in society. In pre-war Germany the first aim was, of course, to derail the labour movement (along with the gypsies and gays) – people who were damaging the means of production, threatening the ability to produce things efficiently, the perceived cause of moral decay, and responsible for the malaise of the people and the corrosion of the foundation society.

            The staged press releases, a man of the people, the imagery of all that was good and great about being German – harking back to a more rural idyll…. and the media that went along with it all – hiding any negative press that would show this image is false is all there. This didn’t happen by accident, it was planned. Instead of addressing the points critics were making the aim was to set society in the image they wanted, those who didn’t fit were targeted for blame. And you know what? I could see how logical it would seemed, how it would be noble and right to exclude these people, that the removal of corrupting influences would cure society’s ills and allow Germany to be great again. There was no need to address the problems of these people, when it was just so much easier to get rid of them, and add the unspoken flip-side (not apparent at the beginning) that if you empathised with the labour movement that you were obstacle and a threat to the success of the nation.

            What is horrifying today is that there is no attempt to understand the situation young unemployed people are in, the ‘cure’ is to blame them and reduce them.

            • Bored

              Rosy, a very pertinent and accurate reply. Well said…wonder if you will get that bullshit “Godwin” reply?

              • rosy

                Thanks Bored. I wrote it here because bbfloyd had already written the word ‘fascist’ 😉 Anyway the the trolls aren’t interested. However, it was a really enlightening to see how well this stuff works.

        • felix

          I rest my case. And palm my face.

        • Puddleglum

          I think it was Key himself who claimed he was “sick” of nine years (?!) of being told what lightbulbs to buy, what showerheads to own, etc..

          Not exactly libertarian but obviously leveraging off the idea of not liking being told what to do by ‘nanny state’. That was the rhetoric.

          As you’ve rightly pointed out, it was disingenuous of Key to leverage off a libertarian streak that National has never been committed to.

  6. Ianupnorth 6

    An observation; I was in Taupo at a National schools sports event at the weekend, many (sorry most) of the medals were taken out by St. Kentigern’s students, or St. Peter’s Cambridge; now who says having a privileged background doesn’t get you anywhere
    So to go to St. Kent’s costs $300 to apply http://www.saintkentigern.com/FileLibrary/SKC%20-%20Enrolment%20Application%202011%20-%20WEB.pdf
    and then the fees are $20K per annum http://www.saintkentigern.com/FileLibrary/SKC%20Attendance%20Costs%202011%20-%20WEB.pdf
    I could always take the cheap option and send my kids to St. Peter’s, only $16K per annum.
    You see, these little luvvies have fully paid coaches, access to the best facilities and of course all the flashest gear. NZ society is so incredibly polarised.

    • Treetop 6.1

      Amazing what not having to ration food does when it comes to performing at sport. Also being able to afford better cuts of meat and fruit and veg is also a bonus.

      Good observation about the other factors when it comes to reaching a students full physical potential.

      • Reality Bytes 6.1.1

        It’s likely they will have pocket money, and therefore access to experimentation with booze and cigs too. Doesn’t seem to have held them back now does it.

  7. Todd 7

    Nope money wont make your kids faster,jump higher,swim quicker or tackle better.god knows I spent lots on my eldest at his chosen sport (rugby)he didnt have the dedication or motivation to get there and I couldnt buy it with money.i think you will find that even poor kids with dedication will make it,ie lomu and many many others.

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      And it’s just pure random chance that all of these dedicated kids go to the expensive private schools.

      Yeah right.

      Ever heard of confounding variables?

      Having all the dedication in the world doesn’t get you far if you have to work on the weekends to bring enough money into your house so your family can eat every night and therefore you miss out on weekend training…

    • Treetop 7.2

      A student can have all the talent and dedication, but when you are poor you have to rely on being funded and mentored/coached.

      I was a gifted middle distance runner until my mid teens, because I was not coached or funded I do not know how good I could have been.

      • Ianupnorth 7.2.1

        Todd over half the entries at the national triathlon champs in Queenstown were from St. Kent’s – about 70 kids all flown down there; having specialist training on tap can hardly be a hinderance. At my lads school PE often consists or running round a muddy paddock, not doing a spin session with the school accredited tri coach!
        As I said before, only the rich can afford the level of input these kids are getting. True, motivation is a major factor, but about 50% of my year 13 daughters peers are working over 20 hours per week – and then people wonder why they drop out of sport.

        • Colonial Viper

          Kids had to find hundreds of dollars to go to that camp, fundraising, scrimping and saving.

          For some families that was a huge hardship and sacrifice. For others, Dad just wrote out a cheque.

          Todd doesn’t appear to understand how 50% of the community can’t just spend this kind of money on their kids even though they would like to, because paying the power bill every month is tough enough.

  8. randal 8

    I want the job!

  9. Ianupnorth 9

    Eh up, I am in moderation, and no rude words either!

  10. Bill 10

    “If you’re going to get by on $170 per week I think anyone would welcome some tips. Similarly having a personal manager (a mentor) would be helpful to have on-call for when tricky problems arise.”

    The best tips would come from other beneficiaries. Especially longer term ones. But the levels of benefit are so bloody inadequate (for all categories) that many of the tips…cunning survival strategies…would involve a degree of illegality.

    So there goes that idea, practical and realistic as it is.

    Meanwhile, ‘budget advisors’ are looking for measurable systemic results. And that encourages an impersonal, punishing and paternalistic attitude aimed at administering ‘clients’ as opposed to an attitude that would seek to learn from people in the shit in order to better help people in the shit.

    At the end of the day this focus on the lack of jobs, though fair enough in some sense, is an ‘out’ for a Labour Party secretly cock a hoop that National are implementing policies they (Labour) would have happily introduced. Labour did nothing for beneficiaries in ten years. They introduced massive cuts to benefits (the largest since Ruth Richardson). And they ‘got away with it’ due to low unemployment numbers. But there was only so far Labour could go before the mask slipped to reveal (to the public eye) the undead hand of 1980s Labour.

    What I want to hear is unequivocal condemnation from Labour and to hear what they would do for beneficiaries. Not this b/s distraction about National not creating jobs. I want to hear Labour talk to the immediate issue. But that’s not going to happen, is it? (Oh, there’ll be slight condemnation of some of the details…all lost in a wave of quiet general approval).


    • Ianupnorth 10.1

      remember when there was talk of a CGT, look back at that and look at why it was being introduced. (hint youth training)

      • Bill 10.1.1

        Yeah, look. Job creation is all well and good and yes, maybe the government should be doing more.

        But what the Nats are on about is welfare ‘reform’. There will always be unemployed people. (I think it’s reasonable to assume that unemployment levels will be consistently fairly high through the future given the fucking mess that capitalism is in right now.)

        And what I want to know is what would be the situation of an unemployed person under a Labour govmt that would be so remarkably different to their situation under a National govmt?

        Labour hammered beneficiaries! There appeared to be a ‘fuck you’ mentality towards beneficiaries when Labour were in power. They cut benefit levels and only seemed to have any time for people in jobs. (Working For Families?)

        That aside (and yup, I’ll no doubt get lambasted for this) I honestly don’t believe that we need jobs. We need better lives. And I know some people will hammer on that a job is a path to a better life (dignity and so on). But you know what? I cannot think of a single job I’ve had in the near 20 years I’ve been in NZ that afforded so much as a scrap of dignity. And I do not believe for a second that I’m in a small minority on that count.

        Consider what the majority of jobs entail. The disempowerment, the rote dimension of most jobs, the mindlessness. The bosses knowing that when they say ‘Jump!’ most buggers are so sunk in a culture of fear and intimidation (for a number of reasons) that they don’t even ask ‘How high?’ but jump as high as they can and hope it’s high enough to satisfy.

        Why would we want kids to be inured to that? Seriously.

        • Vicky32

          . And I know some people will hammer on that a job is a path to a better life (dignity and so on).

          From my p.o.v., there’s more dignity in a job, than there is in sitting at home in a scarf and gloves, because the UB won’t cover the electricity bill – and more dignity in working than in going to the shop to buy bread, buying the cheapest and having to come up with a response to the dairy owner’s cheery “and what have you been doing today?”

          • Bill

            Em. Sounds like you think those without jobs sit around listlessly. Maybe some do. Or maybe that they’re all depressed…. due to society insisting that validation only comes via paid employment, perhaps? And so can’t handle the cheery ‘challenge’ of dairy owners? Maybe some are. And so where does the problem lie in that case? With the person or with social attitudes? And if benefit levels are such that bills cannot be paid or (half) decent food bought, then is the problem the unemployed person or the benefit levels, or a bit of both? And where does it say that dignity is contingent upon not being poor?

            On the other hand.

            Casual seasonal workers turning up at 6 O’Clock in the morning hoping that today isn’t the they’ll be dismissively told to ‘Piss off’; that they weren’t employed any more. Dignity.

            Workers routinely reduced to tears by ‘sadistic’ bosses. Dignity.

            Workers being stressed to the point of exhibiting neuroses and seeming (to a casual observor) like they are on track for a breakdown. Dignity.

            Workers being ‘pulled around the back’ by the boss at season’s end and punched full on in the face as a ‘going away’ present. Dignity.

            Workers having to justify themselves to their boss and beg to take 20 -30 min out from their work day to deal with important, unforseeable personal matters. Dignity.

            Workers strip searched by bosses. Dignity.

            Workers fired for being pregnant. Dignity.

            Workers hours being quietly dropped from rosters until they ‘disappear’. Dignity.

            Workers being made to repeat tasks already undertaken to a high standard and then fired when they object. Dignity.

            I could go on, but I’m sure you see the point I’m making. All the examples above I’ve either witnessed directly or advocated on the workers behalf. Most are not ‘singular’ examples. And all bar the first example are from my time in NZ.

            • Descendant Of Smith

              Yeah like my son who worked at McDonalds after he was laid off by his previous employer of two years so the employers nephew could get a job. Who biked on his pushbike at 4:00 o’clock in the morning in winter to work there who got thanked by his boss after cleaning the toilets by her going and crapping in it and saying “you didn’t clean it properly – do it again”

              Of the manager of the shop my other son left home and town for to manage. After increasing the client base and customer flow then asked why his PAYE and student loan money hadn’t been paid to IRD. Got told he was ungrateful and the shop was closed down.

              Or my first son again who two weeks before Christmas was told that the firm had decided, suddenly and not the norm for the firm, to shut up for six weeks – when asked how he was expected to pay his rent etc was told not their problem. The same week they bought the bosses BMW’s so it wasn’t a financial issue paying them. Thing is my son had made very good suggestions that they implemented about refining their processes and had made the firm more productive. Didn’t matter a bean.

              And both these kids have qualifications and work ethics and loyalty to their employer whoever it may be. And if they get treated like that how do other less knowledgeable and skilled kids get treated?

              And in the main they have worked for firms making good profits and for owners who have lots of wealth. It’s not like they need to treat them like this or that they can’t afford to pay them more.

              And somehow they are supposed to respect employers – it’s bloody difficult for them to do that.

              • Bill

                I’ve never quite cottoned on to this ‘respecting’ employers thing. I’ve always been of the opinion they have to earn it. If any have and are reading this then my apologies – you’ve slipped my memory.

              • Colonial Viper

                Even in feudal times lords were expected to take good care of their serfs.

                Too many NZ managers, business owners and business ‘leaders’ are destroying this country.

            • Vicky32

              Em. Sounds like you think those without jobs sit around listlessly.

              Not everyone, but I do! (When I am not job-hunting.) I am close to clinical depression – I know the signs, my brother was the same before he died 7 years back… I know it’s societal, but it’s very hard to shake – and I feel better when I get some work however casual. I know it’s not like that for everyone!

              Workers routinely reduced to tears by ‘sadistic’ bosses. Dignity.

              That’s happened to me. I know it.

              Workers hours being quietly dropped from rosters until they ‘disappear’. Dignity.

              That’s happened to me and people I know.

              I could go on, but I’m sure you see the point I’m making. All the examples above I’ve either witnessed directly or advocated on the workers behalf. Most are not ‘singular’ examples. And all bar the first example are from my time in NZ.

              I don’t doubt these examples! Jobs can be hellish, but so is being without one… The whole system is broken and needs changing, but until then, it’s better to be securely employed than unemployed.

        • Descendant Of Smith

          While many things were better under Labour they further marginalised those on benefit by increasing super but not benefit rates.

          That was a political choice not a financial one – it would have been heaps cheaper to increase benefits by $20-00 per week and NZS was already much higher than benefits.

          Until they unequivocally up benefit rates by $20-00 + per week they have lost my vote.

          Now is an opportunity for them to make some clear decisions about this and supporting workers – penal rates after 40 hours work would be a start. Employers might then employ more people instead of working the existing ones excessively – penal rates after 35 or 30 hours might be even better.

          A lift in the minimum wage would be another.

          A minimum salary set at 120% of the minimum wage would be another – I’m sick of seeing my and other kids ripped off by employers who pay a “salary” to get around paying them for all the hours they work.

          A change so that every employment contract has to have a mechanism for an annual salary review that must be done in good faith – I’ve come across people who have been on the same salary for 5 years because there is no provision in their contracts for salary review.

          A general wage order lifting all wages and salaries by 3%, 4%, 5% etc.

          I mean it’s not like there aren’t plenty of worker friendly ideas out there.

          It does at times seem they are still stuck in the neo-classical laissez-faire economic pig trough of Rogernomics still.

          • Colonial Viper

            It does at times seem they are still stuck in the neo-classical laissez-faire economic pig trough of Rogernomics still.

            I’m working the problem but its damn hard work.

        • Colonial Viper

          Labour hammered beneficiaries! There appeared to be a ‘fuck you’ mentality towards beneficiaries when Labour were in power. They cut benefit levels and only seemed to have any time for people in jobs. (Working For Families?)

          Well, in the USA you have a choice between two dismal capitalist Banker funded political parties.

          There will always be unemployed people. (I think it’s reasonable to assume that unemployment levels will be consistently fairly high through the future given the fucking mess that capitalism is in right now.)

          Consistent high unemployment levels are a reasonable prediction unless we unpick the neoliberal concept that employment is all about creating surplus economic value for The Man.

          Many of the most valuable jobs in society will never create a financial ROI.Yet the work which gets done, the emotional labour, is more valuable to the community than any money piracy deal signed by Dimon, Blankfein, Fuld or Key.

          Once we realise that we will be on our way up.

  11. SHG 11

    This policy appears to me to be the National Party trying to do the most good for a segment of society that needs help, while making best use of limited resources.

    Seems like a praiseworthy initiative that in a sane world would have been proposed by the Labour Party and would be getting slammed by “nanny state” ranters on the Right.

    But then I look at the Labour Party in its present state and realise why that had no chance whatsoever of happening.

    So, what’s Phil forgotten and/or changed his mind on today? And how is Trevor’s cycle race going? And has Clare discovered IRC yet? boy, wait until she visits #auckland for the first time, she’ll be like a kid in a toy store.

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      Praiseworthy initiative by National for the youth segment of society? Pah, ECOGIRL already has you pegged

      Daddy State vs Youth

    • mik e 11.2

      Limited resources thats Nationals brain power just following like lemmings what other right wing governments are doing with out any research.Burlusconi is the only right whinger with any balls

    • Reality Bytes 11.3

      “This policy appears to me to be the National Party trying to do the most good for a segment of society that needs help…”

      Trying X= doing.

      And even calling it ‘trying’ you are being very generous.

  12. Anne 12

    John Armstrong in today’s Herald:
    It is the kind of policy that a lateral-thinking Labour Party should have been promoting to confound its critics and shed once and for all its lingering image of political correctness in order to recapture some of the huge number of male voters who have switched to National.

    Sticks in my throat to have to say this about the Nat poodle Armstrong, but I think there’s a grain of truth in what he says.

  13. neoleftie 13

    I think this is the whole point – our present system has a created level where only certain citizens can grasp any opportunuties i.e wealth creation. The underclass or downtrodden neglected youth fail even to reach the bottom rung of any created opportunties…poor choices or just situational.
    Do we change the system or do we recognise the causational factors and provide the modifiers that will give every citizen the ability to grasp the opportunties.
    Drastic measures are needed to correct the imbalances between those who can gain the opportunties and those who miss the boat complete…can we afford to simple stand by and hand over the dole or do we use a systemic holistic approach using a wide range of tools and schemes; even drastic and blunt mechanisms such as state governing of basic choices.

    • Campbell Larsen 13.1

      Your supposedly necessary ‘drastic measures’ are not holistic they are unholy – a punishment handed out for a supposed ‘sin’ – unemployment – which for the vast majority is not a choice but an unpleasant unavoidable reality. Not allowing people the latitute to manage their own affairs is arrogant and disrespectful and denies a vulnerable group what little dignity remains to them.
      Furthermore this sort of policy will do nothing whatsoever to change the fact that beneficiary bashing does not create jobs, and that treating people mean does not make people keen.

      • Colonial Viper 13.1.1

        Beatings and half rations will continue until morale improves!

        By Order

        Key & Co.

  14. ECOGIRL 14

    There are two great words which describe what this government lead by the smiling assassin are doing.
    Those terms are:
    Pediophobic, the fear of children. What are those National Standards about except dumbing down and failing new entrant infants, and cuts to early childhood education.
    Ephebiphobia, fear of youth. Lets combine 90 days fire at will, blue card to mark you as a beneficiary, Search and Surveillance Bill, high teen suicide, and NO JOBS.

    National and their cronies do not care about our children and youth.

    • neoleftie 14.1

      cause they do…as long as they are blue blood elites, after all the whole system is geared for the elites success.
      nats objectives is to minimise the noice from the unwashed masses and limit states involvement in bettering the lives of the masses. why have a class structure if you cant distinguish between the classes.

    • Ianupnorth 14.2

      Well said; on Breakfast this morning (can’t remember the blokes name) it was pointed out we are 28 out of 30 in the OECD for ECE funding, but in the top five for how much we spend on the elderly.
      You would think a business party, who claim to know about investment, would actually see the benefits in investing in the future productive sector!

      • Colonial Viper 14.2.1

        Old people vote.

        Come to think of it, 16 and 17 year olds don’t vote either.

    • SHG 14.3

      Wake up, NZ has an aging population where a disproportionate amount of wealth resides with a bubble of baby boomers, a bubble which happily took advantage of free education and healthcare and cheap housing and guaranteed jobs until taxpayer-funded retirement at an early age before denying those things to the generation that followed them.

      No political party has the courage to offend that bubble because to do so would be instant political suicide. Did you see what happened when National floated the idea of removing the seniors free-public-transport card? Smack.

      Ever wondered why all the parties start their campaigns at Grey Power meetings? It’s called licking the hand that feeds.

      I wouldn’t go so far as to describe this as fear of the young – more total subservience to the desires of the old. Every cent saved on childcare is a cent that can be spent on keeping retired baby boomers in the lifestyle that they insist they deserve.

    • mik e 14.4

      they or their parents don’t vote national

  15. Jum 15

    John Key certainly knows ‘what it’s like out there’.

    He also knows that the dunces voting for him don’t know and don’t care as long as he talks tough against someone other than them.

    It’s up to the people who really care – you and me – to broadcast his ignorance, his arrogance and his misleading lies before the next election.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      He also knows that the dunces voting for him don’t know and don’t care as long as he talks tough against someone other than them.

      It’s hard to miss, a lot of NZ’ers have a punitive conservative streak that National know exactly how to stroke. Putting the boot in seems to be a national past time amongst many, and not in a rugby context.

  16. vto 16

    You’re right though, John Key really does not know what it is like.

    He has no idea.

    He has only lived in Burnside until he was 17 or 18.

    Then he lived with Michael Fay.

    Then he lived with some other banker.

    Then he came back and lived in Helensville.

    So he said.


    He is off the planet …

  17. logie97 17

    Bernard Hickey exposes Joky Hen’s hypocrisy


    “…It only makes sense if it is extended more widely.
    In fact, it’s only fair and sustainable if it is extended more widely…

    Firstly, let’s look at those PENSIONERS WHO CHEERED AND CLAPPED John Key’s comments on the weekend.

    Most will be property owners sitting on large (tax free) capital gains and are expecting to be paid pensions and receive ‘free’ health care from the taxes that will be paid by tomorrow’s taxpayers…”

    • joe90 17.1

      Aye, Hickey is on the money and sure enough, fourth comment, you lean so far left.

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.1

        Pensioners in large part have paid taxes all of their working lives & contributed to NZ’s progress, bit tough to lump them in with Dole Bludgers, unemployable youth & baby factories

        Some in the older generations don’t give a shit what mess they have left the younger generation in.

  18. Colonial Viper 18

    Youth Rights, US Style

    Doesn’t fit that well in NZ but the points are very articulate and professional.

  19. ECOGIRL 19

    The fear of the elderly is Gerontophobia.

    That Smiling Assasin and his hench mob are fearful of:


    and especilly those who have No Jobs, No Savings and NO HOPE.

  20. randal 20

    Hey folks. We just a social laboratory for what Mathew Hooton calls “Rebstocks Theory’s”.

  21. billy fish 21

    Not Nanny state, Not Daddy state
    Dodgy Uncle state

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