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Myth-busting: benefits

Written By: - Date published: 11:44 am, September 13th, 2012 - 47 comments
Categories: benefits - Tags:

Some excellent myth-busting via Facebook. What isn’t a myth is that there are 80,000 more people on benefits under National. As with their economic management (which is integrally related) their management of the welfare system has been a complete disaster. They’ve given people no option but the benefit. They’re punishing people for falling into the safety net.

47 comments on “Myth-busting: benefits ”

  1. Uturn 1

    Facts? No no, you must have the wrong country. How are facts going to help NZders hate beneficiaries?

  2. Rupert the Beer 2

    Also busts the myth that the Alliance is dead:

  3. Tiger Mountain 3

    In a truly civil society (but that’s socialism! oh the horror!) everyone should be on a mutual benefit. Most of us are already one way or another when you figure in if you use roads, transport, health care, communication, sewerage systems etc. Humans tend to run collectively in real life. It is capitalism, private appropriation of socially produced wealth that is holding the 99% back.

    Even populist capitalist Gareth Morgan supports a UBI (Universal Basic Income) for all citizens and while he like the original proponents Keith Rankin and Sue Bradford and various advocacy groups acknowledge the delivery, income abatement and tax details remain to be worked out; an assessement of what work, paid, unpaid or precarious is in this century needs to happen.

  4. terryg 4

    slightly unrelated: the rules state:
    Attacking the blog site, or attributing a mind to a machine (ie talking about The Standard as if it had an opinion), or trying to imply that the computer that runs the site has some kind of mind control over authors and commentators is not allowed.

    but the author if this blog post is “The Standard”

    So Lyn can get all pissy at anyone who dares refer to an author as “the standard” a-la the rules, yet there are often posts authored ny “the standard”

    Elementary Sesame-Street Theory applies here: One of these things is not like the other.

    Consistency: try it sometime, its useful

    • Uturn 4.1

      terry, terry, terry. oh my gosh.

    • weka 4.2

      I do hope Lprent has time to reply to that.

    • lprent 4.3

      Click on the author name. You will find that the underlying name of that ‘author’ “notices and features”


      There are hundreds of posts using that handle over the years.

      It is used for putting material in that none of our authors have written and hasn’t been written for this site by a guest poster. In other words that doesn’t ‘belong’ to any individual. We are just reflecting whatever the content is and no author on this site is offering opinion in it – including the programs that run the site.

      The problem was that in the earlier versions of the site that ‘name’ caused some really irritating layout issues because it was too long. So we couldn’t think of a good shorter alias – so we just used “The Standard” which got rid of the layout problem

      But I am tired of answering the dumb question which really is simply being nitpicking and pedantic rather than looking at what the policy says. So I just changed the display name for the author back to “notices and features”. The layout should handle it ok

      Every post authored by “The Standard” is now authored by “notices and features”. Happy now? And what difference does it make?


      • BernyD 4.3.1

        You should just keep using “The Standard”.
        It’s not like you’re personifying anything
        Notices and Features make me think personal adds.
        NEWS might even be better.

        • lprent

          Not really news. We put meeting notices there. Copies of posts from other sites. Regular posts like OpenMike. In fact anything that isn’t a post by an author of a original guest post

          A good description would probably be “SUNDRY”

          • BernyD

            Can you just drop the “By” tag completely ? and just have a category link.
            U could use a Categories like SUNDRY,WELFARE etc, it’d be nice to have a categorised link to click so you can see other relevent articles.
            It’s a great way to come up to speed with articles by authors.
            But written by “The Standard” is still worthy and relevant.

            • McFlock

              Super-sarcastic way of getting around the “oo but the policy says X and the post is signed by TS, I’m concerned about your consistency … yadda yadda yadda” comments:
              Create a person-sounding pseudonym such as “jimbob sez” that implies consistent authorship of sundry posts. Doesn’t matter if it’s true.
              Mind you, it’s been a while since I last read a concern comment. 

            • Lanthanide

              There are already categories and tags that you can click on, in addition to the author, and you’ll get all posts that are in that category or have that tag. The author is just another way to slice and dice the database.

        • blue leopard

          +1 I agree “Notices and Features” sounds ‘orrible.

      • Lanthanide 4.3.2

        Glad you finally changed it, Lyn.

        “And what difference does it make?”

        Now your policy section actually makes sense: anyone who refers to “the standard” as being an author has absolutely no legitimacy in doing so.

        • terryg

          precisely. Thanks Lyn.

        • lprent


          BTW: on the subject of being pedantic. I’m Lynn. My partner’s name is Lyn – she is short on an ‘n’ and even has the sweatshirt to comment on it. It says “only one n”. Her students gave her one to distinguish from yet another Lynn… And of course we live in Grey Lynn.

  5. ianmac 5

    The Republicans in some States are changing the eligibility rules for voters. They use the excuse that to prevent voter fraud they must make it very difficult to get on the electoral roll and by doing so disenfranchise a huge proportion of especially poor people. (Voter fraud is proven to be negligible.)

    The National Government is changing the eligibility rules for Beneficiaries. They use the excuse that the system is full of Bludgers and long term abusers, so that they can disenfranchise as many as possible, especially children, by making it as difficult as possible to qualify. (Beneficiary Fraud is negligible.)

    Spot the difference?

    • weka 5.1

      What eligibility rules?

      • ianmac 5.1.1

        Tested drug free, ready to work, child enrolled at ECE at 3, not on the run. Perhaps all those things are desirable but the stick involved, like cutting allowances is bad news. Check the black list above. Like the Republicans, let’s exaggerate the apparent problem to justify the draconian assault on kids.
        In an ideal world we would all be bright well educated well motivated but we are not all like that, sadly and we have to accept the frailty of a minority. Perhaps the Spartans had the right idea. Newborn kids to be placed on the ground outside the walls. If they survived they would be looked after but then taken from their families at age 4 and sent to a sort of military school to be hardened up. But don’t tell Paula Bennett about that.

        • mike e

          National are Fact free fuckwits!

        • mike e

          National bullshiting bill English say there 54,000 new jobs created Household labour survey.
          Statistics Dept says we lost 58,000since National came to power well the house hold labour survey is not accurate its heresay.

          • blue leopard

            …probably the 54,000 new jobs are the extra WINZ staff required in response to Nats policies
            (…sorry I repeat myself from another thread, but….!)

          • Carol

            The HLF Survey monitors people saying they are in or out of work…. nothing about whether jobs are actually created, or whether they are part time or working on a limited term contract.

  6. blue leopard 6

    I do regularly wonder about the veracity of the numbers we are given citing the costs of welfare in this country.

    One question being: considering welfare benefits are taxed, are the numbers the public are given re the costs spent on welfare those before after tax?

    • McFlock 6.1

      lol good point

    • Balanced View 6.2

      Does it matter? Surely this is completely missing the point?

      • fatty 6.2.1

        True…the point is not how much welfare costs, the point is to stigmatise those who haven’t been provided jobs

        • Balanced View

          And now you’ve missed the point.
          It is up to each of us to earn employment – not to be provided it (or anything else for that matter)

          • Colonial Viper

            The Government needs to assert a policy of full employment.

            If the private sector is unwilling (or unable) to provide the jobs that society needs, then it must set aside and let the Government fill the gap.

            A full time job is the right of every working age NZer.

            Balanced View’s “leave’m to the wolves to see who survives” attitude belongs to the 17th century.

          • blue leopard

            Balanced View

            Considering most people are not self employed, they are employed by another, your comment misses the facts; i.e. most people are “provided” employment.

            As for what the figures are; I don’t appreciate the NZ public being told that welfare is costing “X” amount
            when X amount = Costs plus a double accounting feature where the Government taxes its own tax revenue.

            I would prefer a Government that was less fixated on welfare and fallacious accounting methods and reports based on such and more interested in creating an environment where NZers were given the dignity of being able to provide for their own livelihood.

            This is not so very difficult. How about lowering the working week?

            **Yes that’s right, lets all share the receding job opportunities.** This way everyone would start appreciating just how much dignity and freedom that they take for granted when whinging on about the great and terrible unemployed and underpaid ones.

  7. Bob 7

    The great author ‘Notices and Features’ states “What isn’t a myth is that there are 80,000 more people on benefits under National. As with their economic management (which is integrally related) their management of the welfare system has been a complete disaster” yet in the ‘Benefit myth busting: Take a new look at the statistics’ figure provided, point 6 states “Over the past decade the number of people on benefits dropped and has only dropped in the past 3 years after the recession hit”. So it looks like the great author ‘Notices and Features’ is blaming National for something that his/her own post immediately refutes.

    Just saying……

    • Balanced View 7.1

      And in fact have dropped in the last two years

      • fatty 7.1.1

        well done, you’ve pointed out the fact that many people have left to Australia to find work. Except you forgot to mention they left for Australia.

        • Balanced View

          Really? And I was under the impression that it was the skilled that were leaving current employment to work in similar conditions in Australia for more money??
          It just gets so confusing to keep up with the current argument…….

      • Bob 7.1.2

        Watch out Balanced View, they don’t like comments like that around here, you will be asked for links and proof and when you provide them you will be told that you are an idiot that doesn’t know what they are talking about (the official MSD numbers don’t show this years figures yet, only the drop last year http://statistical-report-2011.msd.govt.nz/main+benefits/unemployment+benefits )

        • Colonial Viper

          Do you enjoy talking to yourself in the mirror?

          • Bob

            I was actually having a nice insult free conversation with Balanced View before you showed up, informing him/her to watch out for the likes of you and then, like magic, there you are.
            How’s life treating you CV?

        • lprent

          There is a quite a difference between payments for unemployment and the number of unemployed.

          To diminish the former all you have to do is to make it harder to get on unemployment, easier to kick people off, and move people to other benefits (all of which this government has exerted effort doing). To the decrease the actual number of unemployed or people looking for jobs, the number of jobs relative to the working age population have not. That hasn’t, and this government has been working assiduously with laziness making sure that it doesn’t either now or into the future.

          So currently they’re busy putting us all into debt by paying for unemployment to a few, while making sure that there aren’t the jobs to pay back the debt in the future. For some strange reason they think that the the great being “the market” will provide. Well I say unto you that “the market” helps them who help themselves and these lazy idiots in government won’t.

          But you sound like a bookkeeper. These may be a concepts that are too difficult for you to grasp…

          • Draco T Bastard

            Benefit-slaying Nats starting to look plain nasty

            Every announcement is framed – much like the Paula Rebstock-chaired welfare group recommendations that provide their philosophical spine – as an “encouragement” for beneficiaries to enter the workforce. But this is encouragement by pitchfork. And with every fresh push that pesky question keeps cropping up: yeah, but where are the jobs?

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      “Over the past decade the number of people on benefits dropped and has only dropped in the past 3 years after the recession hit”

      That’s an outright lie. What it really says is:

      Over the past decade the number of people on benefits dropped and has only increased in the past 3 years after the recession hit.

      And which NACT have done nothing to correct for except blame the victims of the banksters.

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