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Granny sez: f**k the kids

Written By: - Date published: 7:23 am, January 21st, 2011 - 151 comments
Categories: election 2011, labour, workers' rights - Tags: , ,

It’s always so wonderful to load up Granny Herald and see some wealthy late middle-aged grump (I’m picking this one is John Roughan) taking a swipe at the poor in the editorial. Today, Granny says we can’t afford to give mums any more paid leave or more Working for Families for young kids. Hmm. But we can still afford those tax cuts for the rich?

Labour has proposed increasing paid parental leave from 14 weeks to 18 weeks, like in Australia (the editorial writer thinks it’s weird to want to match Australia, despite that being National’s main purported goal). By my calculations, if every mother was eligible the cost would be $100 million a year. And about half aren’t eligible because they haven’t worked as employees enough during their pregnancy. So, $50 million a year. Hardly bank-breaking. You could pay for it by lifting the top tax rate 0.5%, clawing back a tiny fraction of the massive tax cuts the richest New Zealanders have received in the past three years for no observable benefit to the economy.

Annette King has also proposed a boost to Working for Families for family’s with a child under 2. No details yet but that doesn’t stop Granny from attacking it as too generous (I’m willing to bet the same writer believes nothing is too much for any grandkids he might have). But say it’s $1,000 a kid a year – that’s about $100 million. Again, just a fraction of what has been given to the rich in the form of tax cuts in the last three years.

The end of the editorial is instructive:

“Annette King says Labour’s social welfare package will be designed to make New Zealand the best place in the world to raise a child.

The country, she says, must take a long-term view, sustained across at least two political terms, if it is to greatly improve the chances of all children getting the start in life they deserve.

Pivotal to this would be the very early identification of children or families who need help.

Thinking beyond the immediate horizon is always welcome. But a core focus of this year’s election campaign will, inevitably, be the parties’ short-term plans and priorities to address the sluggish economy.

Even the first pointers to Labour’s social package open it to accusations that it is guilty of wishful thinking. If they are a harbinger of policies to come, voters will have two very different approaches from which to choose.”

Two very different choices indeed.

Personally, I would rather live in the best country in the world in which to bring up kids with a government that looks to the future and is willing to make multi-decade-long investments in our children than one which has a government which does very little except funnel more and more of the nation’s wealth to the rich elite and whose plan only extends as far as the next poll.

151 comments on “Granny sez: f**k the kids ”

  1. Pete 1

    There is a key difference between taking money taken off people (tax) that they have usually earned, and giving taxpayers money to people that may or may not really need it.

    • Marty G 1.1

      what’s the difference? you had a status quo where a certain amount of tax was being taken from certain incomes and spent on things like paid parental leave. the change to that status quo saw more money into the pockets of the rich. it could just as easily have funded more investment in kids.

      “giving taxpayers money to people that may or may not really need it”

      because the rich really, really need that extra $20K a year?

      I’d rather we invest in our future.

      • Uncle Helen 1.1.1

        I’d rather we invest in our future.

        “Pay DPB Mums a premium to raise the next generation of beneficiaries and criminals”

  2. Sanctuary 2

    Pete – any society which has people who can guzzle $45,000 of champagne at birthday party of a no-name uruologist from Tauranga clearly has plenty of fat for the taxman to trim and for the finance minister to redistribute.

    • ZeeBop 2.1

      You’re playing into Pete’s lie. That Pete has a right to say for all of us how much tax should be levied.
      By belitting the argument to a vain game of envy.
      Governments has to rise above petty greed of the Pete’s of the world and look to what grows the NZ economy.
      At present the Pete’s of NZ believe, quite wrongly and without any factual basis, that letting the wealthy off more tax will grow the NZ economy.
      When we know that an economy is of economic actors, its citizens, making value judgments in where they work, where and how they spend their wages, interest, dividends, actually creates the wealth and value that is GDP.
      If wages are low, if under and unemployment high, if its too easy to make financial profits without engaging the citizens value machine (Adam Smith’s invisible hand), then what you have is not an free market economy, but a centralized (on the wealthy) planned economy.
      And shock horror, China is now more free market – not because it exploits its people, or allows its people to be exploited, but because the majority of the economic activity is done by citizens as a proportion of the economy.
      You can hardly go into any major city on this planet without finding Chinese who are capitalists, who are living embodiments of Adam Smith’s invisible hands.
      Our economic malaise is because we all buy into the crap that the right actually are capitalists, they are not, they are hoarders and stagnators, they are dispossessors, and scrapers off the top.
      Until we return to capitalism by stopping easy living for the few at the top, and make them work in rewarding us with better economic outcomes, until we do that we (yes even the few rich) will all be worse off with more crime, more disease, more heartache from relatives and friends who fall behind, more exploitation of our kids, and our investments, more lack of trust.
      That’s the future for NZ, more of the same under National, more maliase, more fawning stupidity from the right.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        Our economic malaise is because we all buy into the crap that the right actually are capitalists, they are not, they are hoarders and stagnators, they are dispossessors, and scrapers off the top.

        Brilliant insight.

        Hence the Right’s constant push for tax breaks: they want more money in their pockets this week for doing nothing more and nothing different for the productivity of the country than last week.

        • ZeeBop

          Yes. And I am a hoarder, a scraper off the top, a dispossessor, a stagnator, because that’s the regime we live under rewards me for. I want to change, I vote Green. Labour and National will not change, its too hard for them. I know that the only way to force change is to push the system over by accerating the decline, feeding my own greed. That’s why National stupid is actually good if they keep doing more of it! Labour really has to pick its fights if its going to change, offer real change. And there is only one game changer to hit, the fundamental one, introduce a capital gains tax. Change that and the economy builds itself again, when we value real value again instead of financial value.

      • burt 2.1.2

        hoarders and stagnators

        Pretty much describes Labour during their 9 years of tyranny. But I’m picking you’ll defend the Labour party for not investing in infrastructure or productive assets because they paid off debt and kept taxes high while growth stagnated into recession.

        • ZeeBop

          A lie. National not only abuse they know exactly what abuse they want to impose. Tax cuts and tax rises however unfair and destructive to the fabric of the economy. At least Labour paid down the debt as a hedge against their middle class public sector job creation scheme. And geez, atleast those people were employed in NZ, National gave tax cuts to people who know exactly how to invest it globally growing jobs anywhere in the world!

  3. jcuknz 3

    Lovely graphic Marty 🙂

  4. Pete 4

    For every obscene use of people’s own money you can find an abuse of other people’s money.

    There is no tax “status quo”, it is an ever changing thing, usually upwards.

    Tax has become a semi-unpersonal way of doing this – but is effectively one person deciding to take something of another person to give to a tghird person. If a poor household is short of a bed why don’t we walk ion to a rich household and take a bed to gove to the poor? And raid the fridge while we are there?

    People have to accept some level of tax of course, and there has to be some social spending, but when some people decide what to take off some and give to others it’s fraught with arbitrariness and unfairness.

    Saying someone earns too much so they should just be taxed more is social arrogance. A balance and a reasonableness needs to be sought – for all those involved, not just for the poorer people.

    • Marty G 4.1

      “status quo” is the situation at a given point in time. government’s make a decision to change the tax/spending status quo – they can choose to give more to those who already have plenty or to invest in the future.

    • Colonial Viper 4.2

      Tax has become a semi-unpersonal way of doing this – but is effectively one person deciding to take something of another person to give to a tghird person

      get it into your head Righty.

      That money you earn at yuor job or by your investments IS NOT YOUR MONEY UNTIL THE GOVERNMENT SAYS IT IS

      When you work or invest, you are doing it on behalf of your country and your community as well as yourself. The tax you owe never was and never will be YOUR MONEY.

      Saying someone earns too much so they should just be taxed more is social arrogance.

      No you are wrong as usual, the rich get taxed more not because they earn too much but because they can *afford it*. Subtle difference. Taxes are not punitive, they are *redistributive*. And the very very rich can afford to be taxed much more, and they should be. Social arrogance is the label for somone who is happy for NZ children to live in poverty and suffer deprivation while they themselves drink vintage French champagne.

      Bring back the 91% top tier income tax like the US had from 1956-1964, I say.

      • Pete 4.2.1

        Aw jeez, I had this quaint idea that the government was supposed to be of the people, for the people, and not that the people were of the government, for the government.

        It’s not just “the rich” that are getting more and more disgruntled with having their earnings creamed off more and more by the government. One of the by-products of this is when over-generous schemes like WFF are introduced many of the “well-off” think they should arrange their finances to take some of their taxes back, making it both over-generous and unfair.

        • Colonial Viper

          Aw jeez, I had this quaint idea that the government was supposed to be of the people, for the people, and not that the people were of the government, for the government.

          Awwww jeeez I had this quaint idea that the Government was to be for the people, ALL the people, not the few hyper-wealthy pricks at the top who need the likes of you to ration out the drippings from the lord’s manor table to the poor at the gates outside.

          It’s not just “the rich” that are getting more and more disgruntled with having their earnings creamed off more and more by the government.

          Its not just the rich who are figuring the problem with this country’s economy is that taxes are too high but that we have an income suppressed economy and that it is our wages that are too low.

          And for his good work in this regard Bill English just handed his household an extra $500 pw in tax cuts, for which he did not have to work an extra single hour during the week.

          The rich get richer, its not the Government creaming it, it is high income earners like Bill and John gifting themselves out of our pockets, Granny says everyone else can get frakked.

        • Bright Red

          “It’s not just “the rich” that are getting more and more disgruntled with having their earnings creamed off more and more by the government”

          um. the tax on the rich has been greatly reduced in the last three years. Labour reduced tax on everyone in october 2008, too.

          John Key’s $415,000 salary gets $24K less tax than it did three years ago (and his pay has gone up $25,000 despit these ‘hard economic times’). Can you tell me how that has increased his productivity and benefited the country more than investing that moeny in kids?

          • Colonial Viper

            Can you tell me how that has increased his productivity and benefited the country more than investing that moeny in kids?

            The Right anticipated this question with their meme that he donates his salary to charity. Is the Waitemata Trust a charity?

            • Deadly_NZ

              I dunno if you would call it a charity, this from 2006.

              “The National Party has admitted that its use of secret trusts violates the intent of electoral law and must now reveal the big money backers behind the Waitemata Trust, Labour Strategist Pete Hodgson said today”
              The rest is here


        • Pascal's bookie

          I had this quaint idea that the government was supposed to be of the people, for the people, and not that the people were of the government, for the government.

          You left out ‘by the people’, which is kind of the point.

          The people get to determine what sort of things the govt should do, and how they should pay for it. From that it follows that property rights, for example, are determined by the people through the govt that they have empowered with the ability to govern.

          That’s what people mean when they say that rights are constructed by societies. Rights, including property rights, are by agreement. If you can think of a better way of agreeing on what form those rights to take than via democratically elected governments, let’s hear it.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.3

      People have to accept some level of tax of course, and there has to be some social spending, but when some people decide what to take off some and give to others it’s fraught with arbitrariness and unfairness.

      Couldn’t agree more – which is why I keep saying that capitalism is nothing more than legalised theft. The capitalists don’t produce any wealth – they take it from everyone else.

    • burt 4.4

      I think you are missing something. The left only ever complain about tax rates and threshold settings while the National govt are in power. The tax rates and thresholds (yes the ones that helped steer us into recession) were just perfect (even while we were already in recession) until Dr Cullen lost his marbles and started changing them in 2008.

  5. It’s always so wonderful to load up Granny Herald and see some wealthy late middle-aged grump (I’m picking this one is John Roughan) taking a swipe at the poor in the editorial.

    The piece doesn’t contradict itself a dozen times, and the author seems to have a basic understanding of the facts (ie is accurate about what Labour’s policies actually are) which all points to an author other than Roughan.

    • lprent 5.1

      …which all points to an author other than Roughan.

      A good point. Reads more like Audrey Young because it completely ignores the point of what the policy is designed to achieve. I’ve noticed that she appears to have an event horizon that doesn’t seem to extend out more than 3 years, and therefore focuses entirely on short-term costs rather than longer-term benefits for society.

      That personality deficit (seems to be a common failing of those raised on the right) must be a problem when you’re writing political commentary on government policies which should always be analysed looking in the longer-term.

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    Awesome choice of article title Marty. This is why I love The Standard.

    • lprent 6.1

      Yeah. I was all wound up ready to write a post on that editorial when I read it this morning. Then I saw that Marty already had – and it was quite a lot politer than what I’d have written – including the title.

  7. fabregas4 7

    The challenge for those with plenty is to see that the things that effect them adversely in society are largely caused by poverty and an unequal society. Want better hospitals and schools? – pay your share of the tax burden. Want a reduction in crime? – do the same.

    • big bruv 7.1

      Except those who earn the most already carry the vast majority of the tax burden.

      • bbfloyd 7.1.1

        big bruv…. i don’t think that even you really believe that bullshit. and don’t try to show me a graph, or actual figures, because even a numbnuts like you must know that, as a percentage of their income, low income earners pay a disproportionate amount of their earnings in tax..(all the different ones)not just paye.

        • Colonial Viper

          I’ve been told that hundreds of dairy farmers with million dollar payouts from Fonterra frequently earn less that $40K p.a. in taxable income. That’s a neat trick.

          • Draco T Bastard

            Yep, my nephew’s an accountant and he’s been doing some farmers books and that’s pretty much what he said. Claim WFF while driving around in a brand new Mercedes.

            • Colonial Viper

              And its not even like these ‘farmers’ are the ones doing the actual ‘farming’ any more, is it.

        • big bruv


          Even a numbnuts like you should be interested in facts.

          The truth is that high income earners pay most of the tax in NZ, they deserve to get some of that money back again.
          Many Kiwis pay nothing when you factor in the WFF bribe, what ever way you look at things that is not fair.

          • fabregas4

            If you are shipwrecked on a desert island (say one borrowing $300m a week) and your fellow shipwreckee had heaps of canned food and you had only a moro bar and you decided to pull together (umm) your resources would the guy with the cans get to eat most and would when your moro had been consumed be the only one eating what was left ‘because he bought more to the island?’

        • jcuknz

          >>> as a percentage of their income, low income earners pay a disproportionate amount of their earnings in tax.<<< and I think it could be said that they get a disproportionate amount to their earnings back in benefits of some sort or other compared to the rich pricks?.

      • Tigger 7.1.2

        Well as someone carrying that majority I’d rather see my money invested in children rather than prisons and tax cuts. And my say goes, right, because I’m ‘rich’. Isn’t that how it works, bb? I get to order everyone else around since I pay more tax?

      • Draco T Bastard 7.1.3

        Which can readily be corrected by having more equal incomes but, of course, the rich pricks want lower wages.

        • fabregas4

          I earn quite a lot too. I’m happy to pay tax make our country a better and safer place for my family and us all. You see if those who can afford to pay tax choose to find a way not too then we all suffer – including them.

  8. big bruv 8

    Is this the latest Labour party election bribe?

    More of my money for dole and DPB bludgers, more of my money handed over to parasites in the hope that they will vote Labour?

    Paid parental leave is already a huge cost to business, extending it even further is madness, as is increasing the WFF bribe.

    Once again Labour wants to reward those who show no personal responsibility and penalise those families who live within their means.

    • Marty G 8.1

      you can’t get paid parental leave if you’re on the dole or dpb genius and the government pays for it, no cost to business

      • big bruv 8.1.1

        Sigh….another from the left who has no idea how business runs.

        • bbfloyd

          sigh… yet another right wing numbnuts bigot who has no clue, or any real interest in how society in the modern age is supposed to work. no worries big bruv, you just keep your head firmly stuck up your arse and you’ll be fine….

          • M


            Yet another swipe at the most vulnerable.

            Whenever I hear RWNJs try to defend gouging the most vulnerable I leap to their defence and say I could never vote for the right because quite honestly I don’t hate my fellow man that much along with: the wealthy consume more resources which is hastening the death of the planet.

            One thing the right conveniently overlook is they usually have some money to give them padding against life’s little upsets. A washing machine repair of $300 is nothing to them but for someone for getting minimum wage or is on welfare it might as well be $1000 as it will take them a very long time to pay off such a debt.

            Wonder if this picture would aid your sentiments:


        • Colonial Viper

          Actually its pretty clear now that the Right is the outfit who has no idea how business runs.

          Right wing idea = business will be good if a lot of customers are unemployed and the rest are on low wages with no spare spending money


          • logie97

            big bruv
            always a lot to say in defense of the rich.

            Funny how you lecture on how big business works and you complain about having to pay more of your share.

            Now let’s see, you’re lounging around here reading blogs – is that how management work?

            In truth you’re probably one of those cloth-cap tories who sees it as your duty to defend your masters. Hope you don’t get caught blogging because they will dump on you quicker than you know it.

            Or perhaps you’re a shift worker

            captcha – afternoons

      • Bill 8.1.2

        So still nothing for the poorest, ie the children of unemployed parents. And so the pressure put on unskilled or semi-skilled parents to shut up and put up lest they lose their job and any entitlement to wff will remain.

        I don’t have the words to express my disgust at Labour for the introduction of this utterly discriminatory and pro-business (downward pressure on wage claims) piece of legislation.

        • QoT

          Fuck yes on this one, Bill. I just don’t know if I can buy any “ending poverty” promises from Labour until they basically outright say that it is fucking wrong to let kids starve in order to “incentivise” their parents into shitty, unsustainable employment. Which is the entire reason for below-subsistence benefits and privileging “working” New Zealanders with exclusive tax credits. (Which also handily buys into the notion that something is only “work” if capitalism decides it’s worth getting a wage for.)

          • just saying


            And it’s also wrong to let adults starve by the by.
            I ran out of words to express my contempt for Labour’s treatment of the poor a long time ago. Considering Labour’s huge contribution to the numbers of poor, and the depth and intractability of their poverty, particularly, (but not confined to) the rogernomics years…again no words can express my rage.

            We need a new vocabulary for it

            • QoT

              And it’s also wrong to let adults starve by the by.

              Absolutely! I guess I could just see the tiniest bit of consistency if the argument were about letting adults suffer for their own “choices”. Once you’re basically saying “we think it’s fair to deprive children because of their parents’ “choices”” I just don’t know how people think that’s at all acceptable.

              (Of course the people who really do buy that crap no doubt have fairly gross prejudices against poor people/non-white people/less fortunate people, I just prefer not to think about it.)

    • Fisiani 8.2

      Of course it is just an electoral bribe. Labour only ever have policies that aim to help LABOUR. They never consider NZ’s best interest. NEVER. They simply consider what is in the best interest of LABOUR. Giving people other peoples money is standard Labour policy.They want and expect the people who are given other peoples money to reward ….. LABOUR.
      The people who will pay for this benefit to LABOUR are plumbers, carpenters, labourers, miners, secretaries, nurses and taxi drivers to name just a few.
      There are NO economic benefits to NZ by `taking money from people who work to give it people who do not work.

      • Colonial Viper 8.2.1

        And this is the same Fis who supports the same NAT govt who just offshored $29M worth of jobs to Chinese railway workers, away from Lower Hutt and Dunedin. Good on ya man, you really got your ideas right haven’t you. I mean Right Wing.

      • Sanctuary 8.2.2

        Fisiani, of course this is the case.

        The Labour party is only political movement this country has ever had that has held the interests of those who live here must hold sway over those who merely see this country as a place to extract rentier incomes. Of all our mainstream political parties, it is the one with the most New Zealand-centric focus. It is therefore the only party for all true patriots and all true New Zealanders.

        The National Party was formed to achieve a negative – stop Labour’s progressive and enlightened formula for the nation – and it has never had a positive or original idea in it’s entire existence since. Miserable Tories are miserable all their miserable lives, it would seem. National is and has always been the party of rentiers, of foreign absentee landlords, and of idle speculators united only in defense of their unearned privileges and believing in nothing beyond their balance sheets, relying on craven overseers to keep the local population quiescent.

        On this basis, therefore, I am entirely comfortably with your proposition of assuming that what ever is best for Labour is automatically the best for New Zealand.

        Please, Keep up the good work comrade!

      • Draco T Bastard 8.2.3

        Fisi, it’s National and Act that never consider the nations interest – only their own. Hell, doing only what’s good for themselves is part of Acts declared ideology.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.3

      The real parasites, like John Key and Bill English, vote NACT and what was their bribe? $50/week wasn’t it but, of course, all they got around to was the $1k/week for the rich.

  9. prism 9

    We can’t afford to invest in NZ parents, we are on a mean-minded, morally bankrupt, self-seeking, individualistic, ultimately soul-destroying path. Any other approach is ridiculous and not an efficient use of funds which should be directed in ways that enrich the worthy of NZ, – people in business, farming, investors, the already wealthy and the aspirational middle class.

  10. Swampy 10

    paying people welfare is not the best way to raise a child

    • big bruv 10.1


      Paying people welfare to do nothing is the very worst way to raise a child, it does not set a good example and teaches kids that the tax payer will always support them.

      The very best thing the government could do is to make everybody work for their dole or DPB, make them work 40 hours a week.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        Paying people welfare to do nothing is the very worst way to raise a child,

        Sure, because parenting is the same as doing nothing. And having children starving in cold dark houses is somehow better.

        make everybody work for their dole or DPB, make them work 40 hours a week.

        Hey not bad. I suggest that the Government offer all those on the DPB and dole, everyone of them, a job paying the minimum wage.

        I think from your comments that you would support this big bruv.

        and teaches kids that the tax payer will always support them.

        Sure, because a lot of infants and primary school children understand what a fraking “tax payer” is.

        • big bruv

          “Sure, because parenting is the same as doing nothing. And having children starving in cold dark houses is somehow better.”

          Yet somehow thousands and thousands of working parents manage to raise their kids.

          “Hey not bad. I suggest that the Government offer all those on the DPB and dole, everyone of them, a job paying the minimum wage.”

          Not what I meant Viper, if beneficiaries want to earn a better wage then they can always find a job. (note I mean long term dole bludgers, NOT those who are on the dole for a short time frame) we simply must start insisting that DPB and long term dole bludgers start working for the money they are paid.

          And please Viper, stop pretending this is about the kids, this naked bribe by Labour is directed at the parasites who do not want to work and whose vote Labour want to secure.

          • Colonial Viper

            Not what I meant Viper, if beneficiaries want to earn a better wage then they can always find a job IN AUSTRALIA.

            Fixed that for you mate, since NZ doesn’t have decent paying $20-$30/hr jobs at the moment.

            Hey buddy, you said that beneficiaries should work for their money, and I am agreeing with you.

            The Government SHOULD get beneficiaries working by offering them PAID EMPLOYMENT at the minimum wage (or more if they are suitably skilled). We should not be having people lounging around idle when they want to work after all, correct? Show those bene’s a thing or two eh big bruv I’m right behind you on this, let’s get them all into Government sponsored jobs.

            After all as you pointed out, the Government is paying them to do “nothing” at the moment, lets instead get them working building assets for the community and the country.

            • big bruv

              “since NZ doesn’t have decent paying $20-$30/hr jobs at the moment.”

              So you are saying that you don’t think anybody should be forced to work for less than that?

              There are plenty of jobs at the minimum wage Viper, just this lunch time I have seen two businesses advertising for staff.
              All long term dole recipients and ALL DPB bludgers should be working for their benefits, if they want the minimum wage then they should find a real job.
              Until then, they can and should be forced to work for the money they bludge from the tax payer.

              • Colonial Viper

                There are plenty of jobs at the minimum wage Viper, just this lunch time I have seen two businesses advertising for staff.

                Yeah, and by the end of the week they will have 20 CVs each to consider. Your point?

                So you are saying that you don’t think anybody should be forced to work for less than that?

                Correct. Anything much less than that level of pay is shite. Waitresses in Oz commonly earn $20-24/hr. Double on stat days.

                Our business and political leaders are nickel and diming us. Yeah thanks for helping them put the boot in mate.

                All long term dole recipients and ALL DPB bludgers should be working for their benefits, if they want the minimum wage then they should find a real job.

                Yep the Govt should encourage them by giving them good work, at the minimum wage. Good for all. After all, you want people on the job right bro?

          • Bunji

            Actually, no, bb, the DPB was, is, and always will be about the kids. It’s always been about ensuring kids don’t grow up in poverty (or rather in worse poverty than the DPB, as that doesn’t save 20% of NZ children from growing up in poverty). It’s never been about “rewarding the parents” as you suggest.

            Because the children haven’t done anything wrong, and we don’t believe in punishing babies for the supposed sins of their parents (where often the sin is being poor). And if we can afford to raise them well, they won’t do much wrong in the future either.

            • big bruv

              If you really believed that Bunji then you would support the idea of vouchers instead of giving DPB bludgers money.

              So how about it Bunji?

              • Puddleglum

                Hi big bruv.

                I imagine/presume that you think that people are on the DPB for two, perhaps related, reasons. First, the mere fact that a DPB exists (this would be a standard economic explanation – it encourages the decision to raise children alone by virtue of being there). Second, the DPB was put in place because of some liberal, permissive notion which, in itself, was a response to liberal permissiveness that allowed young women to increasingly become pregnant outside of marriage and for married women to leave marriages without really ‘trying’ to keep it going.

                Here’s an alternative narrative.

                People are on the DPB because relationships, in general, are fragmenting, under immense pressure, and are largely unsupported. In particular, child rearing is less and less socially supported (and I mean directly by family, neighbourhood and local community networks).

                The reason for these changes – especially the lack of communal involvement in the rearing of children – is primarily the form of our capitalist economic system which encourages, even coerces, people to pursue lives that are dominated by the need (and, in some cases, the desire) to earn money, typically through employment.

                That quite particular individualistic approach to the provision of our material needs structures how we live our lives in the same way that a hunter gatherer way of providing material needs structured the social world of hunter gatherers; that herding, nomadic forms of life structured the social world of nomadic herders; that agrarian ways of providing material needs structured the agricultural social world.

                In the kind of individualistic economic form we increasingly have today each individual – now on a global scale – pursues, if they have the resources, work, employment and income independent of any particular location or community or, indeed, family. If the work is only in Auckland, that’s where more and more people without work or work prospects will end up. (It’s happening world wide with mega-cities now developing that are largely comprised of ghettoes, barrios and the like.)

                There are other conditions (e.g., loss of land, the disruption from wars, etc.) that have undermined viable social worlds but what Schumpeter called ‘creative destruction’ (of economic forms) underlies them all.

                As a consequence, the poor (and not so poor) in New Zealand are now living chaotic, disjointed lives where, in the words of Pulp, “you drink and dance and screw, ‘cos there’s nothing else to do..”

                It’s what’s called ‘late consumer capitalism’ and it’s fuelled as much by the breakdown of a coherent and stable social and familial world as it is by oil.

                The DPB and the UB are sops to the cannon fodder (and collateral damage) of capitalism in the hope that the lid can be kept on the suffering. If I were you, I’d be making damn sure it stayed in place.

                Whether you like my alternative narrative or not, it happens to have a lot of research evidence in its support. It also happens to be common sense.

                • M

                  Puddleglum, wow, this is great.

                  ‘The DPB and the UB are sops to the cannon fodder (and collateral damage) of capitalism in the hope that the lid can be kept on the suffering. If I were you, I’d be making damn sure it stayed in place.’

                  Exactly, better to provide the masses with bread and circuses (alcohol, TV, sex) because if basic needs are mostly met at least the rich won’t be having their throats slit any time soon.

      • Deadly_NZ 10.1.2

        AND where you going to find the JOBS??? You Fuckin Dickhead. There are NO JOBS, because Shonkey and his rich mates have just tossed about 70000 people out of work in the last 2 years. And most were from the Govt’s own departments, (and how many of these were, NOW EX NACT supporters who have been screwed by the party that they voted for?.) Have you not worked it out yet Shonkey and Bling and co do not give a flying fuck about you, me, or anyone else that don’t have about 40 mil in the bank, or a lot of influence to meet, and more importantly for Shonkey, photo ops. I have sat here and read all the rubbish that you have spouted, but you have NOT come up with anything of substance just the usual bene bashing, and labour hating rants. But if i was you I would look over my shoulder after the next election, because this crowd have shown that they are only out for themselves and a few richest of the rich so it stands to reason if you ain’t in that club, then YOU BB, could be next onto the NACT scrapheap. Now there’s some food for thought.

        • big bruv

          Well Deadly, (interesting that you can get away with personal abuse) the government can create mundane jobs, they can sit these people in a classroom all day doing nothing for all I care.

          The more important message we are sending the next generation of Kiwis is that they need to work to make a living.

          As for the reduction in public parasites..sorry, public servants……it is a pity that the number is not a lot greater.

          Perhaps Key (still NZ’s most popular PM of all time) and English do not care about you or me, that is not their job, what then must do is create the best environment they can so we all have the chance to prosper.
          The task they face has been made a lot harder due to the mess they inherited, they have also not gone hard or fast enough with the necessary changes but at least they are heading there slowly.

          Tell me, why do you hate the rich so much?

          • Deadly_NZ

            And what would be the point of having people sit in a classroom doing nothing all day?

            No the Important message that is being sent the Next generation is RUN, get out of NZ now, go where you will be appreciated, and where you will be paid a decent wage.

            Oh you call them public parasites well that is incorrect, where would government, local as well be with out public Servants ? They would not be able to run, therefore The rich Politicians would NOT get paid. Hang on yep lets fire the whole lot. You Can’t, Public servants are a necessity.

            I know that key AND Blinglish don’t care about us.BUT as a duly elected politicians they should care about all and not just a few.

            And what mess was that??? Even Blinglish was surprised at the excellent state of the books they inherited. it’s all gone now , gone to the rich few yet again. Now the Books are screwed By the Big Tax swindle and WHO do you think is going to pay the price for English’s Folly? Well I know who, Those who cannot afford it will be made to pay for the biggest ripoff and mismanaged government in years.

            I Don’t hate the rich, I just hate those rich that figure to get richer at everyone else’s expense, and bugger the consequences.

            • big bruv

              “And what would be the point of having people sit in a classroom doing nothing all day? ”

              What is the point of them sitting at home all day drinking booze and taking drugs?

              The important message we should be sending is that life owes you nothing, to get what you want you have to get off your backside and work hard.

              “Public servants are a necessity”

              SOME public servants are a necessity, the vast majority are not, under Labour the public service kept on growing, very few of these people are needed, the private sector could be contracted to do most of what these parasites do.

              Why are you so keen to reward bludgers Deadly?, if they want to go to Aussie then I am happy to pay their airfare.

              And please….Labour have never cared about every Kiwi, they reward those who vote for them and hammer everybody else, they have always been that way.

      • fraser 10.1.3

        “make them work 40 hours a week.”

        doing what exactly?

        its a serious question, what job would you have these bludgers do that doesnt destabilise the work environment of those already doing that job? –

        You know, people who have gotten off their bums and got a job. Are these people meant to lose their job because the contract can be filled on the cheap?

        • big bruv


          I don’t care what they do, they can sit in a classroom all day as far as I am concerned, they can dig holes in the ground and then fill them in again.

          What they do is not important, sending them the message that they are not going to be paid to do nothing is what counts.

          • Armchair Critic

            I don’t care what they do, they can sit in a classroom all day as far as I am concerned, they can dig holes in the ground and then fill them in again.
            How about they build some trains, then? Save us buying them from China, and more productive than digging and filling in holes. That would be okay if you don’t care what they do.

            • big bruv

              “How about they build some trains, then? Save us buying them from China”

              Do you really want to raise the subject of Trains and Train sets then Armchair?, Labours track record is appalling when it comes to do with anything rail.

              Mind you..if we can build trains here cheaper than we can import them from China (and I suppose we could if we only paid the unemployed their benefits for building the trains) then I think it might be a good idea.

              • Colonial Viper

                Hey big bruv, are you going to back the idea of the Government getting beneficiaries into real work for the money that they get given? You know, the minimum wage to work on building trains for instance. I mean, we are paying out to these beneficiaries for “nothing” according to you, why not pay a bit more and get them working for the country?

                That’s a good idea, right? I am backing you when you say that you want beneficiaries to get to work for Government money!

                Lets do it bro.

                • big bruv

                  No Viper, I would back you in a bid to have all bludgers working for their benefit, their benefit and not a penny more.

                  Those who do not want to work should receive nothing at all.

                  Lets do it bro.

                  • felix

                    And all govt employees to be paid at the rate of the dole, presumably. Otherwise you’re talking absolute bullshit.

                    Come on bruv, let all the crazy out so everyone can see you for what you are.

                  • No Viper, I would back you in a bid to have all bludgers working for their benefit, their benefit and not a penny more.

                    You want them working? You believe in a fair days pay for a fair days work right?

                    Minimum wage it is then 😀

              • Armchair Critic

                Do you really want to raise the subject of Trains and Train sets then Armchair?
                Yeah, I’m fine with that. I’m out for the afternoon to get some building supplies for the weekend, so don’t expect a quick response. It’s your choice, though.
                Keep in mind it’s off topic, and it’s just a distraction from the fact that you said you don’t care what the unemployed do, then at the first opportunity to confirm you chose to equivocate.

                • big bruv


                  If we can build trains cheaper in NZ by using beneficiary labour then that is a good use for the long term bludgers.

                  If not then we buy the trains from China and have the bludgers digging holes.

          • fraser

            so.. paying bene’s to do nothing is bad, but paying them to do something pointless is good?

            • big bruv

              “but paying them to do something pointless is good?”

              Yes it is, after all, we have a lot of government departments who are paid to do pointless work.

            • Colonial Viper

              Oh fraser, how narrowly you are looking.

              Bene’s given work could be used to build up the common wealth. New park projects, new housing projects, new school renovations, community work, if they had trade or craft skills they could pass them on to others etc.

              Even new cycle ways.

              Things which would be good for the community to get done, to add to the common wealth for all.

              • fraser

                yeah – i was kinda seeing if BB would get there on his own.

                im all for that kind of stuff as long as it doesnt have unintended consequences.

                theres much community work that could be undertaken to assist both unemployed and underfunded charities etc

          • Deadly_NZ

            Oh and are you sure you don’t want to be there to whip them because they are not going fast enough for you ????? Is that what you want huh lines of people digging holes and then filling them in, with others like you walking up and down with whips and guns ??? They called that SLAVERY you fucking moron! But yeah typical Right wing nutter shit.

            • big bruv

              Goodness me Deadly, if I had called you a fucking moron Iprent would have banned me.

              Anyway, back to the idea of digging holes and filling them in again, at the moment we pay people to do nothing, that is neither good for them or a good example to their kids.
              I note that you have conveniently overlooked the point that I have always maintained that this type of work for the dole scheme is for the long term bludgers and DPB recipients, I am not talking about those who are on the dole and genuinely looking for work.

              We simple cannot keep paying people to do nothing.

              [lprent: The trick is to avoid pointless abuse. If you clearly explain (ie avoiding meaningless slogans and preferably inserting backing links) why you’re abusing people then I regard it as robust conversation. If there is no clear point then I regard it as trying to start a flamewar of more pointless abuse.

              One I rather enjoy reading to see if there is anything new for me to learn in how people frame a pointed insult. The other is merely tedious after watching many generations of tweenies repeating the same old net behaviours.

              In this case deadly was sarcastically* making his/her point by suggesting the absurd extensions of your argument (regardless of if that was what you intended). Didn’t try to put words into your mouth. Just extended your logic because you hadn’t provided boundary limits.

              * in a rather ham-fisted way – I’d have framed them as questions to prolong the torment… ]

              • Colonial Viper

                We simple cannot keep paying people to do nothing.

                We simply cannot have a business and political elite who have no idea of how to create an economy able to soak up our excess labour pool and pay it properly.

                The buck stops at the well paid top, buddy.

                • big bruv


                  I have asked you this before and you always avoid answering, I don’t suppose you will this time but I will give it one more crack.

                  Are you of the opinion that nobody should be forced to take a job that pays less than $20-$25 an hour?

                  And if so, where is the money going to come from to pay those wages?

              • Deadly_NZ

                Well maybe I did not get banned because I was making a point about the moronity (if that’s even a word ,but it will do) Of your decidedly right wing me, me, me policies.
                But if you are so unhappy with the way things are run here, and you have quite generously offered to pay for all those who wish to go to Austraila ‘s Airfares.

                “Why are you so keen to reward bludgers Deadly?, if they want to go to Aussie then I am happy to pay their airfare.”

                Then may I Humbly suggest you use some of the money, you so obviously have, to maybe buy yourself a one way ticket to the nearest dictatorship. And see what they think of your ideas. Because in all reality I feel sorry for someone who is so blinkered as to literally hate all that goes on around him, but have NO ideas on how to change themselves.

                • big bruv

                  Oh Deadly, you really have no idea at all.

                  My policies are not “me, me, me” at all, they are about rewarding hard work and personal responsibility, rewarding great parents who set a good example.

                  The policies that you support reward the lazy and those who have poor parenting skills, your idea of an equal society is to drag everybody down instead of lifting everybody up.

                  I do not hate those from the left (I reserve my hatred for animal abusers) I pity them, I also pity those who have an irrational hatred for those who have done well.

                  Oh…and the reason you were not banned is because this site has some shocking double standards, nothing new for Labour supporters though.

              • big bruv

                No need to bend over backwards to defend your rules Iprent, I have always know that there are two sets..

                I have no problem with it.

            • Colonial Viper

              But employing overseers armed with whips and nightsticks adds new productive jobs to the economy! What’s your problem Deadly? Really.

              • Deadly_NZ

                Unfortunately as with all things there will be few jobs after the towers, and robotic nightsite equipped 30 calibre chain guns All operated from a central office by one man at at time. See so the spoils go to the one who OWNS the towers. Jobs yes but not after the owners get all the robotic remote controlled things all running. maybe it will be like the Death Race films, That will keep the Rich Few Amused.

      • Daveosaurus 10.1.4

        “The very best thing the government could do is to make everybody work for their dole or DPB, make them work 40 hours a week.”

        And the best way of doing that is having a government that creates jobs (as the previous one did), instead of destroying jobs (as the current one is doing).

        • Pete

          How many productive jobs did the last government create?
          Compared to privately created productive jobs?

  11. the sprout 11

    I love how Granny Herald always loves to present itself as the Righteous Patron Saint Protector of underprivileged and abused children – until there’s an issue of cutting into the wealth of corporations or the wealthy by way of taxes to pay for the necessary services and help for such children.
    At that point Granny soon adopts a different tone altogether: let the poor bastards rot if doing something more than just sanctimonious bleating might actually cost money.

  12. johnm 12

    U$ NeoLiberal disaster zone (The place John and Wodney get their ideas from like making the wealthy wealthier by privatization) A Poor American Speaks:
    NZ must not go down this sad road!

    I’m one of them. I don’t want to be.. ..I think you’ll find most people don’t. The stigma attached to poverty is now, just as bad as it was 100 years ago. Benefits were designed to allow human beings the dignity to live. Hunger hurts, trust me on this. It hurts physically, and is highly distressing and agitating, emotionally. But, it’s not just those on benefits, but also the working poor, who suffer in America. I’ve worked 7 days a week for months, and still had to take food hand outs. My employer didn’t provide health insurance, and when pay was cut during a hard business quarter, I got sick with an excruciatingly painful infection, and could do nothing about it. I suffered for months, because I only made enough to pay my rent and nothing else…even working 7 days. There’s some incredibly mean, shallow empty-headed comments on here, and that’s part of the problem. These are people whom likely haven’t suffered, and probably if they ever did, would be the first in line to whinge about their fate…but no one would hear them, because no one wants to. Our US healthcare system is becoming genocidal in regards to the poor, working poor and even the middle class. People become homeless for no other reason than medical bills. I needed an ambulance, and was kept overnight in hospital in 2009. I had Medicare and Medicaid, yet still, the bill came to $700 for one ambulance ride, and half my year’s part-time income for one overnight stay in hospital. Only a naive fool thinks food stamps (so-called because they used to come as paper voucher booklet, in monetary denominations, which you had to tear off and hand to till clerks), only a complete idiot thinks food stamps is enough to live on. The poor can’t afford to eat healthy in the USA. “Healthy” food is often out of our financial reach. Waiting lists for rental assistance are shut down with 3 year waits or more. No one wants hand outs, but no one wants to be homeless, either. To be poor in America–and perhaps elsewhere in the world, is to be invisible. To be homeless, is to cease to be human at all, in the eyes of many of our fellow human beings. I’d literally rather be dead than homeless. I’ve managed to avoid it several times, but the hand-to-mouth life on the edge existence says that’s always a real possibility…my worst nightmare. I’m trapped. I can’t get out. With my disability cheque being garnished for defaulted educational loans I couldn’t get a high enough paying job to help me re-pay, or any wages I make–usually minimum
    wage, as my college diploma has proved worthless, traps me in poverty, in a place I hate and loathe, pretty much forever. Working or disabled, the only way I’m going to get out, is to die. And, I have to sit and watch as well-fed, well-insured, well-housed, wealthy politicians, take away our health care, our housing assistance, our food, and our basic dignity…while giving rich Americans tax breaks. And, the levels of petty unnecessary meanness, of naked unchecked greed, emotionally retarded anti-poor rhetoric just sickens me. They hurt us, because we are a silent majority and vulnerable. I sometimes feel like America is just going someplace that’s ugly and disgusting and against everything I stand for. I’d sell my soul to get out of here…away from the growing horror that’s spreading like a putrefying disease across America. But more than likely, the only way that I’ll ever leave where I am now, is as a pile of ashes in a cardboard box.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Thank you for sharing your experiences with us.

      • ZeeBop 12.1.1

        Be better informed, when the right say they want their tax money back, explain to them how if you pay tax you want value for money. For example, if you pay rates that fund the local bus service but don’t have the income to afford the bus ride, then how is that fair! How is that not exploitation, why should you be paying for services that you can’t afford. That’s the whole point of welfare, so government can cross subsidies services to the whole community it also has the responsibility to insure everyone has an adequate income. Now what’s happened in the US, and they are trying to do here, is get the poorest to subsidies the richest who aren’t paying their share of tax for value that they get from government!!!! That’s the joke, that the left have let the right dictate the debate, that value for money means the right can sack back office, cut services, and tax cuts for only the rich because they deserve them! Where’s the alternative debate!!! That tax should be levied fairly, if you fly out of auckland every could of months why shouldn’t you pay for other people get use public transport!!! why can the right cut services and give tax cuts to the wealthy, raise taxes on the poor!!! and then call it fair and balanced!!! A complete bald face lie.

  13. NX 13

    Wonder how those rich pricks spend their OUR money ….?

    • Deadly_NZ 13.1

      They don’t spend it They just send it over seas or just stick it in the bank and it does NOTHING, to stimulate the economy. The only thing it stimulates are a few electrons in a computer program, as it sits there, and increases in size. With no help from any people.

      • NX 13.1.1

        Michael Cullen advocated savings – I always knew he was full of crap.

        And as for those horrible overseas people, they never buy our stuff anyway. So you’re totally right.

    • Colonial Viper 13.2

      Its not your fraking money until the Govt takes what it wants and says it is. The work and investment you do to make money is not just for you, it is for the country and the community.

      Get with the programme.

      • NX 13.2.1

        So that’s why people say ‘take home pay’. Thanks Viper, really helpful as usual.

        But I still don’t know what rich pricks spend their non-taxable income on??

        • Colonial Viper

          Typically the wealthy only spend a small minority of their total income. Only so many dinners you can eat a day, only so many cars you can drive at a time, you can only use one iPad on each hand, that kind of thing.

          So they look for ways to invest and grow their expanding capital base to make a big number bigger.

          • NX

            So they spend a minority of their income buying stuff. Buying stuff doesn’t helps anyone. I’ve never heard of jobs created through buying stuff.

            Wonder what they do with the majority of their our money?

      • big bruv 13.2.2

        What programme is that Viper?

        The communist programme……fairly sure that one failed miserably.

        It is my money, the government had to legislate to allow them to steal a certain amount from me every week, all taxation is theft.

        • Colonial Viper

          No mate not the Stalinist-Maoist communist programme, the Apple Computer one. The one where the first workers were also all part owners, and each had a voice in how the company was run, what products they would make, who would do what, even what their dress code was.

          And no, its NOT YOUR MONEY until the Govt says it is.

          In the old days, the King’s men would ride in on horseback. Today the IRD comes knocking.

          It NEVER was your money to start with, NOT THEN, NOT NOW.

          • NX

            Government for the people, by the people.

            • Pascal's bookie

              yep, so the people get to decide what’s in their interest, and that will is executed via the duly elected government.

              So property rights and taxes etc are decided by the people, through the govt. So when the duly elected govt says you own something, you own it. When the govt says you don’t own it, you don’t.

          • big bruv

            Bollocks it is Viper.

            It is my money, I earn it and I want to keep as much of it as I can, anything the government takes from me they do via legalised theft.

            • NX

              There are currently no parties (in parliament) that advocate for zero % tax. So given you voted for it, can you really call it theft?

              • Pascal's bookie

                Big bludge doesn’t recognise the debt when he loses a bet, even when he sets the terms.

                So good luck getting him to recognise the legitimacy of democracy.

  14. RRM 14

    “um. the tax on the rich has been greatly reduced in the last three years.”

    Correct… Now, “the rich” only have to give a somewhat higher proportion of their earnings to the government than anyone else does.

    • Bright Red 14.1

      yea, well the poor can hardly afford to can they? The money has got to come from somwhere, unless you can identify billions of savings, it’s got to come from those who can afford it.

      Maybe you want to slash education or health or force families on to the street if dad loses his job thanks to the endless recession?

      yeah that’s the way to a productive future workforce.

      • big bruv 14.1.1

        ” unless you can identify billions of savings,”

        Well…seeing as you asked.

        An immediate end to Working for Families
        An immediate end to Interest free student loans
        An immediate end to the DPB
        An immediate end to the Treaty grievance industry
        Six month term limits on the dole
        Abolish most government departments (Min of Womans affairs, Families Commission, Min of PI affairs, Min of Maori affairs, Min of Arts, Min of Sport, etc…
        Abolish 99% of government quangos.
        An immediate end to free travel for list MP’s
        List MP’s to be paid the medium wage.
        All MP’s to take a pay cut
        End all perks for ex MPs and ex PM’s

        How is that for a start?

        • Pascal's bookie

          Looks a recipe for more crime and civil unrest, and lower aggregate demand and lifespans.

          Sounds lovely.

          • QoT

            I wonder if bruv’s done the numbers comparing how much more he’ll get from paying no tax vs the costs of hiring mercenaries to protect his property when the government cannot and the poor and destitute choose to demonstrate just how unlazy they are when it comes to feeding their children by any means necessary.

        • Deadly_NZ

          And a quicker way and keep all of the above and pay for Blinglishes tax cuts..

          Legalise marijuana..
          Millions saved in the pointless hunt for this weed.
          More Millions saved By not having 10 police cars come to every house thats investigated as a tinny house.
          Even more Millions saved by not imprisioning Pot growers and minor dealers.
          Billions raised in taxes for Hemp products and yes legal selling of marijuana to over 18’s
          Millions saved in the health area when Tobacco is banned and Alcohol is placed where it belongs as a dangerous drug.

          Because anyway you look at it the absurd amount of resources police,justice etc is almost an embarrasment to look at. Because in the end all they get is about 10% of they yearly crop. better to legalise or decriminilise it and save millions BUT it won’t get done.

          BUT for once think about it and the absurdity at that amount of money being used every year in the ‘pot’ war and it’s increasing.

          Flames here

          Oh and BB if you don’t have anything but the usual hate rant, then don’t expect any replies from me, and yes I know Alcohol is legal and pot is not.

    • Colonial Viper 14.2

      Bring back the 91% top tier income tax that they had in the US from 1956-1964.

      Coincidentally the period of a huge middle class wealth boom, and a leap forward in the US real economy.

      • big bruv 14.2.1

        “Coincidentally the period of a huge middle class wealth boom, and a leap forward in the US real economy.”

        Sigh…..more Michael Moore bullshit.

    • mcflock 14.3

      …so when they consider their undeserved victimisation, the rich can employ a violinist to play a mournful tune.

      While the unemployed live with ultra-low pressure water and get their power cut off, and their kids experience moderate to severe hardship – such things as not having wet weather clothing, not being able to participate in school projects because of a lack of funds, and malnourishment.

      But let us all weep for the rich because their tax cuts were not large enough.

  15. RRM 15

    Maybe you want to slash education or health or force families on to the street if dad loses his job thanks to the endless recession?

    Since you mention it… no.

    Before we get anywhere near to stoning beneficiaries or eating babies, there is a lot of real, actual crap that could be “slashed” without affecting services. I realise that is a message no-one here wants to hear.

    I had a mate working in a Govt Department in 2006-7, part of a 14-man team that handled all of this Department’s internal comms stuff – typing memos, compiling the monthly newsletter, etc. He said he and any two of the others could easily have done all the work. Most days he had cleared his in-tray by morning tea time, and the rest of the day was his to surf the net or work on his personal projects, so long as he appeared busy whenever the supervisors were around.

    14 people. Doing a job 3 people could have done. That’s just rubbish. That’s the reason people talk about waste in Govt and the civil service.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      14 people. Doing a job 3 people could have done. That’s just rubbish.

      Yeah in your fantasy dreams. Now that your mate is out of that department you might as well tell us which one and where.

      Yes there are always efficiency improvements to be made.

      But that money needs to go back into frontline services, not tax cuts for Bill and John.

    • Puddleglum 15.2

      Sorry, but that anecdote’s a red herring.

      Forget about the reliability of your mate’s estimate of workload – I can match your anecdote with many more about both the public and private sectors.

      I know quite a few people employed in the public service to carry out a task that was far too ambitious for the meagre number of staff employed. (Presumably because Labour feared to hire, too rapidly, the actual number of people required to do the mandated work properly?). And I don’t think anybody should be unaware of the shortfall in numbers of social workers, probation officers, prison warders, etc..

      Similarly, I have endless anecdotes from the private sector of people complaining about how they are expected to do two or even three people’s work after numerous restructures of their workplaces.

      Given the weight you attach to such anecdotes, you no doubt wish to castigate private sector employers for wanting to get work done without employing sufficient labour?

      • QoT 15.2.1

        82 jobs currently advertised at Auckland Council. Who’d like to bet that a NACT-appointed Transition Authority decided to try to run the biggest local government body in New Zealand on the cheap? (Sorry, “as a lean, mean machine”.) And oh look, now they’re in business suddenly the holes are springing leaks everywhere.

        (Of course the alternative is that these roles weren’t filled during the transition and a shit-ton of people who had relevant, necessary skills were made redundant and will now be hired back at higher salaries … which speaks volumes for the “efficiency” and “business experience” of the ATA and the right in general.)

  16. logie97 16

    … don’t you just love the informed Right’s arguments.

    New Zealand earns $x,000bn in exports.
    The cost of every import reduces that cake.

    Import big cost items like trains from China and every dollar goes to China.
    Make them here and the costs to New Zealand Inc. are only on
    the components that have to be imported.

    The labour is free and the spin-offs for all those support industries
    mean a growing and prosperous local economy.

    What’s wrong with that burt / big bruv / fisiani et al.

    • prism 16.1

      logie97 – How can that sound so right and still sound so wrong to RWNJs (often with a rider from them about lazy unemployed people)?

  17. tsmithfield 17

    Lower taxes paid for through less government is a great combination. This puts more income into the hands of most, reduces the loss through churn, and allows people to be redirected from being public parasites into more productive activites such as earning forex through exports etc.

    • McFlock 17.1

      “This puts more income into the hands of most, ”
      But other RWNJs have moaned that the rich minority pay the most taxes – were they lying?

      Otherwise tax cuts would really only put more income into the hands of a minority (at best doing this while significantly increasing the necessary expenses of the majority and only slightly increasing their income).

      • tsmithfield 17.1.1

        In case you don’t realise it, the wealthy pay the most in tax, so of course they will get more back from any tax cut.

        However, those on lower incomes obviously benefit from across the board tax cuts as well, by definition. Given this is a large number of taxpayers, the effect of the injection of extra funds into the economy can be substantial.

    • Colonial Viper 17.2

      A well funded Government is a crucial ingredient for civilised society. You have to pay for roads, schools, hospitals, breath testing stations.

      Forget the “public parasites” BS right wing meme, its the private sector parasites which are sucking NZ dry.

      Check out Westpac – ships $6M per week off to Australia to look after shareholder lifestyles over there.

      • tsmithfield 17.2.1

        Don’t disagree with you. So lets get rid of the parasites from the public service so we can have a well-funded efficient public service, and have the displaced ones redirected to profitable activities.

    • Pascal's bookie 17.3

      Lower taxes paid for through less government is a great combination. This puts more income into the hands of most, reduces the loss through churn, and allows people to be redirected from being public parasites into more productive activites such as earning forex through exports etc.

      It’s a neat little theory, and widely believed. It just seems so, well, pretty.


      You should have wee poke around the presimetrics blog. The effects predicted by much thinking on tax just don’t show up when you look at the data.

      Seriously. take a look. The effects, they are missing. Or present in their negative state, or something. Th world does not seem to conform to the theory. Stupid world! etc. But it is what it is, no?

      Start here:


      Other bits worth are well worth looking at too.

      he has an explanation for why the data might show what it quite clearly shows, here:


      and offers a bet, here:


  18. big bruv 18


    “But that money needs to go back into frontline service”

    Except that under Labour it never does, it goes to employing more public servants to push paper.

    • Deadly_NZ 18.1

      And under National it goes into the pockets of a select few.

      Because at least the paper pushers will spend the money, on rent, food, and services. Therefore stimulating the economy. Unlike the Rich Few, who will just stick it into an already bulging bank account, where it will never see the light of day again. Thereby depressing the economy.

  19. logie97 19

    Interesting observation
    28 comments from one individual RWNJ spread throughout the day on this particular Posting alone.

    Strange way to be running a successful business for one so assured of his business acumen.

    • luva 19.1

      Interesting observation
      25 comments from one individual LWNJ spread throughout the day on this particular Posting alone.

      Strange way to be filling in each and every day.

  20. NX 20

    Let me guess… Colonial Viper – he’s a man on a mission.

  21. Ed 21

    Perhaps I am missing something, but I cannot see a huge bill to the taxpayer from this policy – won’t the cost fall on employers? (and yes I understand that the government is a major employer) – the paid parental leave will not be paid through a benefit from WINZ, or by collecting lower tax . . .

    • Pete 21.1

      I don’t know who is expected to pay for this, but if it is employers then increased costs lead to increased prices which leads to increased cost to consumers.

      Re the level of tax cuts over the last couple of years, how much have they been cut beyond:
      – a catch up adjustment for a decade or more of bracket creep (which effectively raised tax rates for most people every year)?
      – compensation for GST increase?

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