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Future focus fizzer

Written By: - Date published: 10:45 am, August 9th, 2011 - 31 comments
Categories: benefits, spin - Tags:

Part of National’s Future Focus is forcing everyone who’s been on the dole for over a year to reapply. Apparently, 7,400 went off the dole as a result. I’m all for clamping down on real abuse. But I note none of these 7,400 have been prosecuted for fraud.

I wonder. How many would have gone off the dole anyway in this period? How many in real need are now missing out because they couldn’t jump through the government’s hoop? How many went straight on to a different benefit?

Is that why the numbers don’t add up? Nats claim Future Focus got 7,400 off the dole. The dole is $10K a year. $10,000 x 7,4000 is $74 million. But Govt claims to have saved only $9 million. Suggests most of the people ‘kicked off’ wouldn’t have been on it anyway.

There are 16,000 people on the dole now who have been on it more than a year. Basically as many who were on the dole in total when Nats got to power. So, let’s not clap the government on the back too hard.

How much did making all those people reapply save – assuming there are real savings at all – compared to the increased costs of benefits since National took power?

31 comments on “Future focus fizzer ”

  1. Tangled up in blue 1

    Unfortunately MSM doesn’t check the numbers or look at the wider context.

    All the general public see is National saving us millions by kicking lazy doll bludgers off the teat.

    • Akldnut 1.1

      Compliant reporting
      Smoking mirrors
      Look over there!
      The list goes on & on & on & ……….

    • mik e 1.2

      The tax dodgers are no better tuip

    • JK 1.3

      Re: In Specific Context – Tangled up in blue

      So numb-nuts you’ve got 300,000 jobs! No!! Fuck off! Supply & Demand! Supply the jobs = less people Needing support fuck wit! The Tories don’t like that part of the economic mantra when it’s their lack ability within their own policy to deliver a growing economy currently 0.8%, borrowing huge amounts of money to pay for tax-breaks for the fuck-wit end of society that said to JK if you subsidise us the private sector we’ll employ?? It hasn’t happen!! So fuck-wit Supply the Jobs and the Market Forces will Reduce Cost! Duh!!

  2. millsy 2

    It would really be interesting to see how much of those 7 and a half thousand people fell through the cracks and ended up in the country’s homeless shelters.

    It would also be interesting to see how many of these told WINZ where to go..

  3. JS 3

    The paper work and compliance requirements are quite hard to get right and can involve traipsing all over the place to get the right signatures. Hard when you have no money for bus fares. Then the next time you go in to W and I they’ve lost it all again, and there is a new staff member who knows nothing about you.

    Also what do you do if you part time casual workplace asks you to work on the same day you have your Work and Income appointment? You lose either way.

    Your renewal forms go to your old flat so you don’t get them in time. You’ve told W and I about the change but their files weren’t updated due to their staff shortages. Result dole cut.

    Just some common stories.

    • Tigger 3.1

      Hey those numbers don’t quite make sense, I really ought to…oooh look, the PM got a picture of himself with the Queen for his birfday!

  4. jackal 4

    Sheesh! Is that graphic right? I’m sure that it is, but over $2 billion more each year being spent because unemployment levels have increased dramatically under National… makes you wonder what their real priorities are.

    And what about the cost of those people who aren’t able to jump through the hoops and have to rely on family members. How long does National think that families should treat their members as charity cases? What cost to society when they break down? Looks like JK is spinning a whole lot of bullshit into our faces again.

  5. Lanthanide 5


    When I initially saw the headline and brief blurb, it talked about making them re-apply after only 9 months instead of 12. But now it’s nowhere in the article itself?

    Maybe stuff slipped that out by mistake.

  6. Draco T Bastard 6

    Part of National’s Future Focus is forcing everyone who’s been on the dole for over a year to reapply.

    How much does it cost to do the added paper work? Do WINZ have enough staff to cover the added work? Does all this extra cost that NAct put in place actually have bring about any benefit?

    Oh, wait, you answered that last question.

  7. James 7

    What would people here say to someone who thinks that having the rich pay more tax is unfair?

    • millsy 7.1

      I would invite you to go to any one of our public hospitals and tell the patients that they should go without treatment so the rich can have pay less tax.

    • Colonial Viper 7.2

      Stop defending your Money Masters in the hope that they will one day give you drippings from their Manor table.

      • James 7.2.1

        Unfortunately this “someone” earns a fair bit (at least compared to most New Zealanders).

        • Lanthanide

          “Unfortunately this “someone” earns a fair bit (at least compared to most New Zealanders).”

          So you recognise that the average NZer being paid a low wage is the problem.

          WFF is corporate welfare – the government has to make up the difference in take-home pay because our private sector simply doesn’t pay enough to raise a family on.

          • James

            Uh, I’m not this “someone”. I’m trying to explain why his hostility toward those on a benefit is misplaced and, after disproving most of his claims, it has come down to the fact that he doesn’t think it’s fair for the rich to pay more tax than others.

            Granted, he says he is against the “lazy long-term unemployment bludgers”, but the National Party policy he subscribes to affects all beneficiaries.

            Also, he would argue that those who aren’t made enough should have put in more effort to get an education because everyone has the same opportunities (Māori even more because of all their benefits and freebies).

            • Colonial Viper

              I had a very difficult discussion with a Righty on this just a day ago. She didn’t consider herself right wing but the thought pattern was perfect.

              I basically rounded it back to a very simple idea: the wealthiest in society benefit the most from the structures and apparatus of society. From the enforceability of business contracts, to educated workers, to law and order protecting life and property, to a democracy which maintains a market and fair competition. The list is long.

              So the wealthy should contribute more back towards society in order to build that society up further. And not just in dollar terms, but in proportional terms.

              From each according to their ability; to each according to their need.

            • Colonial Viper

              Also, he would argue that those who aren’t made enough should have put in more effort to get an education because everyone has the same opportunities

              Does this person even know that 20% of NZ children are growing up in poverty today?

              Does this person even know the advantages that inherited wealth and inherited business networks gives to young members of certain families?

              Does this person even know that all the most powerful and wealthy decision makers in this country, those 45 and over, took the benefits of free education in NZ and then massively raised the price for all who followed them?

              You can’t help even smart people see if they are determined to be blind. That’s what I found out yesterday, with bitterness.

              • James

                Yeah, I explained all that; even providing references where possible (mostly thanks to great articles on TheStandard). I think he even resents me because I got a Student Allowance while he had to put everything onto a Student Loan.

                • rosy

                  I know a few very rich people that got student allowance because their parents write off their business earnings. So I hope he resents them more, because they could have paid for education, but didn’t, and effectively used his tax money for it, without contributing any tax themselves (because they have no income – it’s in trusts).

                  Also does he resent money paid out to pensioners? Because that’s the biggest chunk of social welfare spending, not other benefits.

                  • James

                    To be honest, he would probably say that pensioners should have saved their money. He also said that John Key has probably paid enough tax over the years to pay back any benefits and free education he received.

                    I’ve already been told by someone else who knows this “someone” to give up; that’s just the kind of person this someone is.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      He also said that John Key has probably paid enough tax over the years to pay back any benefits and free education he received.

                      This is such fucking bullshit, excuse my language.

                      John Key is reaping in personally everyday a massive return on investment from the benefits and free education that he received.

                      The idea that you are off the hook if you pay back the initial cost you personally incurred even as you get to keep every bit of ongoing daily profit for yourself ad infinitum is totally corrupt.

                      The state made an investment in John Key, the investment paid off, and that investment should keep paying. And not just for his royal highness personally.

                      btw I think you have been wasting your time with your mate and definitely ours as well

                      To be honest, he would probably say that pensioners should have saved their money.

                      Get with the programme. How can you save if your deliberately suppressed wages only enable you to live from hand to mouth?

                      The Righties are smart the Left has to be much smarter and faster.

                      You are definitely wasting our time.

                    • James

                      (I can’t reply to Colonial Viper, so I’m replying here)

                      Um, I’m sorry for wasting your time, I guess. I was just trying to imagine what he might say. Your responses have been really good, I’ll have to remember them if the chance ever comes up again.

                      Thank you to everyone who replied to my question.

                    • rosy

                      Today’s pensioners were given the belief that if they paid their taxes, the state would look after them. It’s not the pensioners who broke that promise. Today’s workers will be going into retirement with a different narrative, but your friend can’t use that to undermine pensioners who were given a different one.

                    • Bazar

                      “The idea that you are off the hook if you pay back the initial cost you personally incurred even as you get to keep every bit of ongoing daily profit for yourself ad infinitum is totally corrupt.”

                      You heard it here first, Viper believes that anyone who ever received state sponsorship in any form or way should be a Serf to the state for the rest of their lives….

                      Not that that’s news to any regular, since Viper just froths and foams at the mouth when he senses anything that isn’t communist in nature.

                      Also James, don’t apologize to Viper, you’ve done nothing wrong, and in fact look to be a nice addition to thestandard.

                    • millsy

                      James, I suggest you tell your friend, that a tax increase will be very small in comparison to what he will have to pay for a security detail to protect him when he goes out in public.

            • mik e

              Why is there 20,000 more on the DBP since National has been in office James why would you support a party that has higher numbers on benefits as well as the corporate bludgers .Why would you support a finance minister that has only managed less than 1% growth in five years.why would you support a party thats claimed to give more to Maori than any other mainstream party.You’ve shot your own argument down in flames!

  8. Richard 8

    anyone got the source of data for the graph please? 🙂

    • Blighty 8.1

      the $9 million figure is all over the media. I imagine MSD or Treasury has the benefit cost…..

      …. yup, it’s in the budget.

  9. mik e 9

    James taking John Key as an analogy we should be pleased that he got the hand up to allow him to be a productive member of society and lived happily ever after, for if he hadn’t National would be stuck without a magnanimous leader . You would think with this successful policy, everybody in National would be wanting more solo mums in state houses brining up their children . Maybe thats why they have managed to increase the numbers by more than 20% the biggest increase in 30 years.

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