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NZ in the international news again

Written By: - Date published: 3:35 pm, July 30th, 2016 - 59 comments
Categories: articles, Minister for International Embarrassment, poverty, quality of life - Tags: , ,

Front page of The Guardian today. Makes you proud, doesn’t it. (Link to article.)


59 comments on “NZ in the international news again”

  1. Odysseus 1

    Damn, thought it was going to be about the Ingham twins…

  2. YNWA 2

    Every day brings another reason to be embarrassed to be a New Zealander, well played Mr Key

  3. dave 3

    brought to you by bastards incorporated brighter future division

  4. whispering kate 4

    Somebody previously in another post was commenting that the basic benefit, being as miserly as it is doesn’t allow for buying sanitary products or even moisturing products for their face/shampoo or household cleaning products. What are these women supposed to do, the benefit will just not cover the extras like that, only basic food items. Somebody I know gets an extra food grant so she can add them to her living allowance. We have become a miserly selfish nation and just the fact that women cannot get sanitary provisions in is just disgusting. If this was men who needed these items then all hell would let loose. And, by the way why are these products so expensive, just like sunscreen when its essential for skin cancer protection – it beggars belief what this country is coming to. This government just loves to punish people and enjoys it in the process.

  5. NZJester 5

    When most are struggling to even get food, is it a surprise those that other items are out of reach. This government made sure to work out a tax system that hits the poor in New Zealand hardest by moving the tax intake from PAYE over to GST.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 5.1

      …And ignores income from capital gains almost entirely – a key source of funds for the uber wealthy

    • James 5.2

      Do you have evidence at all that MOST are struggling to get food? Yeah. Thought not.

      • Leftie 5.2.1

        The hundred and thousands of Kiwis struggling in poverty is evidence. Food is expensive in New Zealand, in fact, all the basic necessities to live are very expensive in New Zealand.

      • crashcart 5.2.2

        Feel free to go give some of your time at a food bank handing out parcels to the thousands of working people and people on benefits who can’t afford to feed their families this winter.

        Then come back with your bulls shit about no evidence.

        Of course I can already see the reply in his head “he said most and clearly not most people are hungry”. Stupid splitting of hairs designed to distract from the real issue that you refuse to see because you won’t look at anything beyond what you see on the telly and amongst your group of comfortable friends and family.

    • Chris 5.3

      These sorts of problems arise as a result of basic benefit rates being too low. Pressure then gets put on the extra benefits like special needs grants which then bring arguments about what’s essential and what’s not, whether this category can be used for that and so on. It was never meant to be like this and the only way it can be fixed is by lifting basic incomes. The government won’t do this but neither will Labour so even with a change of government there’s no hope of anything changing soon.

      • Leftie 5.3.1

        This punitive measure has been written into the system by Paula Bennett and Co, what’s been written in can be written out and removed under a new government, and it’s just your assumption that nothing will change.

        • Chris

          Where’s the evidence Labour plan to raise basic benefit rates if they become the government?

          • Leftie

            Why wouldn’t they? Why do you think a Lab/Green government wouldn’t raise basic benefit rates and remove punitive measures Chris?

            • Chris

              Because not once when in government nor when in opposition after that have Labour ever said they’d increase basic benefit rates.

              And because when last in government Labour introduced further “punitive measures”.

              And not once has Labour said they’d remove those “punitive measures”.

              Instead, Labour as recently as 2014 supported the National government’s introduction of even more “punitive measures”.

              • Leftie

                The previous Labour government also introduced support too Chris. You need to watch parliament more, Labour has indeed said they will remove National’s punitive policies, as too the other opposition parties. The current Labour party is under a new administration, read their website, (and that of the Greens for the direction the opposition is heading), Labour is reviewing all of it’s 2014 policies and will not be releasing details until the next election. Given John key’s dirty politics, that is a understandable position for Labour to take.
                I fully support a Labour/Green government and feel that with that combination they can offer New Zealanders a more better and decent alternative to the utter destruction we have now under John key and his Nats.

                • Chris

                  I sincerely hope you’re correct, but Labour’s track record remains fully intact, including failing to do what it says it will do. For this reason I won’t be rejoicing so gleefully until Labour backs up what is says it will do with real action.

                  • Leftie

                    Chris, believe what you want, but Labour do have a far better track record of keeping their promises than what National do. I don’t care whether you rejoice or not, do you want John key and National to remain in power?

                • Chris

                  “Labour has indeed said they will remove National’s punitive policies, as too the other opposition parties.”

                  You still haven’t pointed to Labour saying they’ll lift basic benefit rates. They haven’t said they will and I predict they won’t. Of course I want them to, but their record suggests I’d way overly hopeful for thinking they would.

                  I watch Parliament regularly and have seen no evidence of Labour saying they’ll remove National’s punitive policies, let alone their own punitive policies.

                  You also need to understand that these “punitive policies” don’t necessarily sit in vacuums marked “National” and “Labour”. While you can identify which party was responsible for what, It’s a cumulative process where each has built on the the former’s handy work. The tradition since the late 1980s has been that Labour introduces the policy then National takes the baton and runs with it. There have been exceptions where Labour’s initiated the serious damage, like Labour’s removal of the special benefit in 2004 – something the Nats tried but failed to do in 1994/5 – and then Labour’s support of National’s attacks on the poor in 2014, but Labour, surprisingly or not, has often led the charge.

                  Labour supporters who might lean towards showing a bit of compassion for the poor should probably try to understand the history of social welfare benefit changes under Labour governments, particularly from 1999-2008.

                  • Leftie

                    Why limit it to just one Labour government Chris? Why not try and have an understanding of welfare changes encompassing all governments both National and Labour since welfare was introduced in the mid 1930’s? Been through this with you before Chris, and you obviously haven’t watched parliament enough. I have answered your questions in previous posts, and it’s pointless repeating it to you when all you want to do is have a bitch, and Labour bash in a mindless attempt at point scoring. You talk about compassion, yet you have spent more time and energy trying to have a go rather than discussing the atrocious plight of what kiwis women and girls are going through.

                  • Leftie

                    Chris, Why limit it to just one Labour government? Why not try and have an understanding of welfare changes encompassing all governments both National and Labour since welfare was introduced in the mid 1930’s? Been through this with you before Chris, and you obviously haven’t watched parliament enough. I have answered your questions in previous posts, and it’s pointless repeating it to you when all you want to do is have a bitch, and Labour bash in a mindless attempt at point scoring. You talk about compassion, yet you have spent more time and energy trying to have a go rather than discussing the atrocious plight of what kiwis women and girls are going through.

                  • Leftie

                    Third attempt to get this posted…. Why limit it to just one Labour government Chris? Why not try and have an understanding of welfare changes encompassing all governments both National and Labour since welfare was introduced in the mid 1930’s? Been through this with you before Chris, and you obviously haven’t watched parliament enough. I have answered your questions in previous posts, and it’s pointless repeating it to you when all you want to do is rave, and Labour bash in a mindless attempt at point scoring. You talk about compassion, yet you have spent more time and energy trying to have a go rather than discussing the atrocious plight of what kiwi women and girls are going through.

            • Andrea

              “Why do you think a Lab/Green government wouldn’t raise basic benefit rates and remove punitive measures”

              Based on results from the last time they sat on the Treasury benches.

              For example – the amount you could earn or otherwise have as income before tax if you were on an Invalid’s benefit (as it was) did not rise for all those years, although wages went up.

              They never at all redressed the cuts inflicted by Richardson.

              About all they did do was reduce the palpable fear. Thanks, Steve Maharey.

              Plus – they’re so busy with their petty internecine warfare they haven’t time to look at boring stuff like under-employment and upskilling at a fair to free rate. And the Greens…yeah, nah. Humdrum, middle-of-the-road and yesterday’s issues.

              • Leftie

                Then again, your assumption based on results from the last time they sat on the Treasury benches could be wrong too. You need to do a catch up to the present day Andrea. The current Labour party is not the same as the previous Labour government, Labour is under a new administration, and has pulled itself together. You may find the work Labour has been doing about the changing nature of future work and employment interesting, it’s a subject that both Labour and the Greens have been actively investigating and working on. Disagree with your view that the Greens are “Humdrum, middle-of-the-road and yesterday’s issues.” not so, given that many of yesterday’s issues are even more relevant today. Nothing lives on a dead planet. Besides the Greens are more than just environmental. Some people really do need to do something about their tunnel vision.

                The Future of Work is changing…

                <a href="http://www.futureofwork.nz/

  6. Sabine 6

    could this be made into a humanitarian issue and also could Winz be forced to do something as this seems to be a gender based discrimination.

    i.e. if the benefit is calculated in such ways as to cover basic minimum it needs to cover sanitary items that are gender specific. i.e. sanitary products for females and say razors and shaving cream for gents?

    if WINZ is true in saying that it wants people ot better themselves get of the benefit etc, would maintaining basic hygiene not the most basic things to consider.
    also what about the health implication for the females that can not manage their menstruation in a healthy way.
    I mean, some of us bleed like cut pigs for several days/weeks and to not be able to leave the house for fear of leakage must have some sort of impact on the mental and physical well being of the women and girls involved.

    for those who care, girls as young as 9 can start menstruating, it can come with great pain and extreme loss of blood in some cases.

    while homeless many many years ago, us girls used to use toilet paper from public loos. Luckily this did not last long. But this is an issue that needs to be looked at and a solution needs to be found. It can not be that girls / women are being locked out of participating in life and living life to the fullest because of a biological difference between men and women that is not being taken into account when a benefit is calculated.

    • Wainwright 6.1

      The benefit isn’t even calculated to ‘cover basic needs’. It’s been deliberately below the amount needed to survive for years.

      • Sabine 6.1.1

        i agree that the benefit does not cover ‘basic’ needs, but it should cover hygiene needs.
        No one can call sanitary pads a “luxury item” or are wound dressings equally ‘luxury items’.

        I still believe that this issue needs to be taken up on a human rights platform (in this case it is against human rights of women and girls) and it should be looked at as a discrimination issue.

        If the benefit is calculated on ‘some needs’ than surely it takes the monthly requirements for women/girls into account, if not it is discrimination, as women / girls can not participate fully in life without santiry pads/tampons during this time of the month.
        It should also be considered that this is not a one of need but one that most women experience for a good 30+ years in their lifes.

    • SmallFurryAnimal 6.2

      Sanitary items have been an issue for years. Not so much on the SLP (previously IB) as it is paid at a higher rate.

      God help those who bleed 10 days each month or who’s hormones cause heavy bleeding (honestly you can go through $30 in three days if it is bad enough….)

      • Sabine 6.2.1

        Have more then one daughter, so mother and two girls or three and you are taken to task to the tune of a 100$ and more.
        Personally these items should be a medical issue and should be issued at no cost. the big companies producing and marketing these things for high cost my scream abuse and woe betide me, but then this is a way of gender discrimination and also a ‘keep the womminz in place’ type of issue.

        I just read to day where a women was not issued clothing and sanitary items in prison, was locked up for several days and literally taken to court wearing no pants. This is not about money, but humiliation and keeping women in place.

  7. Mrs Brillo 7

    Take GST off these products, of course.
    It would be a start.

    • DoublePlusGood 7.1

      Take GST off everything and give people 15% more – should help them afford their necessities, not just sanitary products.

      • James 7.1.1

        You know gst gets the money so they can pay for stuff right?

        • DoublePlusGood

          Obviously the government needs tax to pay for services. But it doesn’t need to do this via a regressive tax method like GST that stunts the domestic economy.

        • Stuart Munro

          Take the tax from capital gains – unearned income.

  8. mary_a 8

    This is disgraceful. Not just the point that this news has reached international media outlets, but because something is so dreadfully wrong with NZ’s economic/social structure, when young women and girls are unable to afford necessary sanitary items. So bad.

    Our “Brighter Future”? Definitely not for far too many struggling Kiwi families.


  9. Observer Tokoroa 9

    . To The Brits

    . The sanitary needs of women and girls are a grievous exposure of the real John Key (pm), Billy English (finance min); Paula Bennett (min of Savagery).

    . Each of these grubby degrading individuals is supported by swags and swags of redneck poorly educated lackeys.

    . The Brits should know that everything in NZ is taxed. Everything. Girls needs are taxed. Baby needs are taxed. Toilet paper. Medicines. Every Pension. Everything.

    The only people who are not taxed are the friends and Corporations of John Key, Billy English and Commandant Paula Bennett.

    The Brits should know that our incomes are very low. On top of that, our stupid NZDollar is worth only one half of an English Pound. Schooling is very expensive too. Our Over taxed food is very expensive. Especially Dairy Food and Meat and Fish and Greens.

    Our Tory NZ Government and its uncouth supporters has shamed us and shamed us for over 8Yrs. The sickening Bastards. Self serving, Narcissistic Cruel Bastards.

  10. mosa 10

    This country is a disgusting joke

    • Leftie 10.1

      Yep Mosa, it is.

    • Reddelusion 10.2

      Leave then

      • Leftie 10.2.1

        Why? Why should we leave our own country Reddelusion? When all we need to do is kick out the Nats and their cohorts in crime to restore order, respect, integrity and humanity back into our country.

        • Stuart Munro

          I think that this time kicking them out won’t be enough. We’re going to have to go through all their shitty corrupt deals and throw the crooked ones in prison.

  11. Son Of The South 11

    I don’t get why this couldn’t be handed to Pharmac – they fund all meds, including condoms, other contraceptives, etc. And now also medical devices and supplies used in DHBs, down to minutiae like bandages. Their buying power and their place in providing subsidised products used in health care make this a perfect issue for them to be involved in – run a tender process, fund a few basic tampons and sanitary pads, problem solved. I don’t see any reason why a woman/girl would need to see a doctor for a prescription either (unlike other meds they fund) – just have them in pharmacies, collect for free, they could be distributed to high and intermediate schools. Really it’s such a basic issue that any so called *modern* society should be able to have fixed in no time. It’s just ridiculous. And I say this as a male too.

  12. Observer Tokoroa 12

    To Son of South

    . It is difficult for a Tory outfit to supply anything for free. Unless it be to their friends .here and overseas. They give loads of free money to the Casino and other interests. But to Girls? Come off it mate.

    For your info the Tory Party up here is:

    Nationals – Act – Maori Party – United Future.

    A shameless lot. Who do wonders for wealthy friends and foreigners. Bugger all for anyone else. Even give brand new Schools away to friend here for free. Amazing. Absolutely amazing.

  13. fisiani 13

    A British newspaper rehashes a mistaken report in a NZ paper. Wow. Big news.

  14. Observer Tokoroa 14

    . Hi Leftie

    . Thankyou. Really appreciate your words.

    . The story is that this world is not for the few greedy wealthy. It is for the Community. We must get dignity back to the Community.

    . Left – here and in other countries – is the correct direction.

    The so called Right is just a sub branch of a worldwide greed outfit. Sort of a clumsy highly selective low life cartel. No sense of responsibility. Non Tax paying oafs. With pools and pools of “clip the Ticket middle men” and fat shareholders.

    Ordinary people here and around the other fascist parliaments – require as a life demand – their share of Assets, Income, Education, Access to Health and to Freedom.

    Remember, the Common Man does the work. Takes the Risks. They make the wealth. They raise the children. they have the talents. They must no longer let the greedy take these things from them Leftie.

    The greedy are just layabout misdirected Sloths

    By the way, the clumsy wealth saturated mob that rule us in New Zealand Are:

    The Nationals; The Act. The Maori Party. The United Future.

    . We simply don’t need them Leftie.

    • Leftie 14.1

      I really like what you have to say and how you say it and I concur Observer Tokoroa, and NO, we do not need Nationals; The Act. The Maori Party. The United Future, they have to be sacked.

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