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Doing nothing as dole numbers rise

Written By: - Date published: 9:15 am, October 13th, 2010 - 17 comments
Categories: jobs, john key, unemployment - Tags: , ,

It was a year ago that Paula Bennett first declared victory over rising unemployment. Since then, John Key has been working his economic strategy hard: high-fiving every schoolgirl he can find, playing with spiders, announcing and re-annoucing literally tens of kilometres of cycleway, smiling and waving till it hurts. But dole numbers are rising.

The number of people on the dole rose in September by 1,380 to 65,281.

Now, maybe Paula Bennett (when she gets back from her holiday in the US) will blame seasonal variation. Well, sorry, but the seasonal variation should be in the opposite direction. Over Labour’s nine years in power, the number of people on the unemployment dropped by an average of 1.2% each year between August and September. National’s record is an increase of 2.6% last year between August and September, and 2.1% this year for the same period. Remember, the recession officially ended in March last year.

I’ve graphed these numbers lots of different ways to show you that there is still a real, not just seasonal, increase in dole numbers occurring. Here’s a new one. If Bennett was correct and unemployment started falling this time last year, then the number on the dole this September should be less than the number on the dole last September when unemployment supposedly peaked, eh?

Well:

As you can see, the September dole number was well above what it was last September, when unemployment supposedly started to fall.

There’s a chance that some of this increase is earthquake related. If it is, that’s just all the more reason why the government should have stepped into with a proper plan to protect jobs in quake-affected businesses.

But I don’t think that the quake has destroyed thousands of jobs without us hearing about them. No, this is the same story of a nationwide malaise, small job losses here and there, nearly no new jobs being created. All presided over by a do nothing Prime Minister and an incompetent Minister.

PS. Bennett is on holiday in the US for this whole month. So, Tony Ryall answered her question in the House yesterday. Fortunately, he had read the formulaic answer:

“Just this morning I received the monthly benefit figures for September, which show that 5,890 people had cancelled benefits because they had found work.”

Hmm. If 5,890 cancelled their benefit because they got a job and the net increase in dole numbers was 1,380 (and more cancelled because they died, reached retirement age, moved overseas, moved on to another benefit etc)  that means at least 7,270 people went on to the dole because they lost their job in September. That’s a scary big number. And a problem that Ryall’s answer shows the government doesn’t even want to acknowledge exists.

17 comments on “Doing nothing as dole numbers rise ”

  1. Tigger 1

    The first paragraph is one of the funniest things I’ve read in ages – great post Marty.

  2. He needs to cajole the spider vote so they will work on Steven Joyce’s interwebs – for minimum wage of course.

  3. Bright Red 3

    thank god summer’s coming, that will solve everything – according to that Nice Man, Mr Key.

  4. ianmac 4

    The ad on TV shows that spiders have a nasty Kung Fu habit quite unlike the Hobbit habit.

    Terrifying to watch the creeping unemployment figures because the real Kiwis are not just numbers but young people starting out through to older folk with serious responsibilities.
    Meanwhile back in the House the Plan is………………….

    • rosy 4.1

      I wonder if this rise in unemployment is behind the belated decision to increase funding for tertiary education places next year.

    • Vicky32 4.2

      Simply scarily depressing I think, as an already unemployed person…

  5. Treetop 5

    All the government have done to increase employment is to use scare tactics, e.g. we will halve your benefit if you protest in taking up a job offer or saying a person is now work ready.

    The one thing I would have liked to have seen is a $10,000 grant given to a person who has a good idea. In some cases $5,000 is available through a council grant programme. I believe that there are people out there like me who have consulted with a designer to do a protoype but lack half of the funding.

    • ZeeBop 5.1

      Moving goal posts, 50% benefit if you try to negotitate your future. Tax cuts that cost working poor more. The theme is easy to see, the underlying message, stand your ground and National will make it harder, do nothing and they will rob you anyway. Welfare is an industry, justifying the need for a under-employed, unemployed, underclass so they can provide psuedo businesses grants to take the unemployed, grants to fund existing jobs, grants to employers. There is never any dissent allowed that points out how National are actually destroying jobs, lower wages destroys jobs, it destroys families, it stops employment because the rich are not the only people who create jobs. The poor do too. They employ their kid to wash the car, they emply people to fix their roof, or put a solar panel on. The National party want the wealthy to employ everyone so they just turdify it, and ignore sensible policy making by ignoring reality and dictating how it will be by saying we not running fast enough helping the wealthy control the whole job market.
      Wealthy want to hold on to their wealthy, they won’t do it supporting the likes of Key and English, whose whole policy platform is finding the cheapest easiest means (nomatter what damage they do) to make the wealthy richer.
      We need to stop buying the cheap politics of the right, it worked when the economy expanded with more oil and more liquidity, pretty much you could do any stupid policy and still get re-elected. Now oil is peaking the soap is out,
      and the politicians and markets are taking a cleaning. Man do they cry and fight like big babies.

      People make economies, so what makes people tick should be rewarded, but actually the only employment that is rewarded is money making for the wealthy, if 10% own the economy that 10% of the potential opportunities to create economic activity off the market, the people. If someone builds assets by painting art that last centuries its not economic because it doesn’t produce wealth now for the wealthy! That is absurd, its really really cheap work, a few paints and canvas! Yet nobody can make a living at it because all the legislative activity is designed to build luxury yatchs for the 10%! Capitialists needed, the dumb parasities have taken over.

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