Reactions to Metiria – the political and the personal

Written By: - Date published: 7:04 am, July 29th, 2017 - 181 comments
Categories: class war, greens, leadership, Metiria Turei - Tags: , , , , ,

Much of the political commentary this week has been about Metiria Turei’s confession that she lied to WINZ years ago. There are basically two kinds of reaction.

The first is the “shock horror ripping off the taxpayer” well practiced “outrage”. This we hear from loud voices, the Farrars and Hoskings and Seymours and Gowers of the world, and their ilk. Such reactions are of course 90% political. They’re just playing the same game as always, using any means possible to bash the left. The only reason the Nats haven’t piled in to this more directly is that they are vulnerable over Paula Bennett.

The second kind of reaction is the “good on her I’d do the same to protect my kids”. This we hear from ordinary people. The many hundreds (thousands?) who have posted to #IAmMetiria to share their support and their own stories. People who feel like this:

Verity Johnson: The only reason I want to vote is because Metiria Turei lied to WINZ

So Metiria Turei didn’t tell WINZ that she had flatmates. As a taxpayer, I don’t feel at all ripped off by this. In fact it’s the first time ever I’ve felt inspired to vote.

Before this, I was approaching voting in the general election like I do my tax return. It’s painful, dull and soul-crushingly uninspiring. But I’ll do it because I need to and because my Mum will give me shit until I do. …
But when Turei came forward and said, 1) she misled WINZ, 2) that she was scared about admitting it but felt she had a duty to do so, and 3) that the system was broken and she was the proof, it was the first time I’d properly respected a politician.

It smacks of integrity. I know that is counterintuitive because she technically lied. But I still think this move is overwhelmingly honest. Her whole campaign is that the benefits aren’t enough to live on. You know she believes this because she clearly has been there and experienced it. She’s also prepared to fight for this moral principle by staking her political career on it.

So I don’t care if people think this is a vote grab. Every politician right now is trying to grab my vote. Metiria Turei is the only one with enough balls to deserve it.

This is exactly the reaction that the usual cast of right-wing commentators are terrified of. Exactly what they are trying to shut down. I think that the louder they shout, the more ordinary people are going to side with the under-dog.

Former New Plymouth Foodbank manager defends Metiria Turei
Something’s got to give for most vulnerable
Tracy Watkins: Some are worried too many of their fellow Kiwis are missing out
Metiria Turei’s benefit fraud confession part of policy to ‘speak truth to power’

181 comments on “Reactions to Metiria – the political and the personal ”

  1. Ed 1

    Graph showing 2014/15 analysis from Victoria University.

    Tax fraud $1.24billion and benefit fraud = $30.4million.

    • ianmac 1.1

      My wife, the intelligent one, says that the graph also shows that the column on the left is the amount of money spent on catching Benefit Cheats and the column on the right shows the amount spent to catch tax cheats.

    • srylands 1.2

      And Lisa is correct. I attended her 2015 presentation at The Treasury on her blue collar vs white collar sentencing research.

      However the data you present is a two edged sword. Benefit fraud is actually rare. So when it IS detected it attracts attention. Including from the very vast majority of beneficiaries who are honest. It is the savage reaction from this group that is the real political concern here. And it is savage.

      Back to the case at hand. Why on earth was the father reportedly not paying child support?

      • Craig H 1.2.1

        Wasn’t named on the birth certificate I believe and presumably nobody applied to IRD to collect it.

        • jcuknz

          Perhaps a fellow student so a pointless exercise … anyway was supporting by his presence.
          It is nice of people to express their outrage here but far better to do it at Kiwiblog as I have done and cop the ugly nature of nat supporters.

      • Back to the case craven attack at hand.


      • So when it IS detected it attracts attention. Including from the very vast majority of beneficiaries who are honest. It is the savage reaction from this group that is the real political concern here.

        You’re Making Shit Up™ again to try to hide your hypocrisy.

      • marty mars 1.2.4

        There is no evidence that beneficiaries turn on other beneficaries in a savage way – spin mate. Also YES benefit fraud IS rare but white collar crime IS NOT rare – the only reason that isn’t pursued is that most middle men have been on the wrong side at times – the cashie, fudged tax, forgotten stuff all over the place – white collar crime epidemic.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Not to mention the leeches who derive their entire income by writing predetermined “reports” designed to provide support for whatever the National Party wants to do.

          All funded by the taxpayer, of course.

          • lprent

            Hey – that is unfair. The so-called “Taxpayers Union” is funded by anonymous donors tying to rort the political process by producing reports and press statements designed to provide support for whatever the right wing of the National party wants to say.

            Their support from the taxpayers isn’t direct – the policies that their rich donors support only benefit them indirectly by thieving from those less well off them them through changes in National party policy.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              I was thinking more along the lines of “public policy advisors”. Like eg: Rebstock and others.

        • McFlock

          I’m not even sure that benefit fraud is “rare” – just in piddly amounts that people need to make their lives managable. $20-$50 undeclared here and there, that sort of thing. Oh, and it includes overpayments, so lots of times of maybe a week or two before winz stopped the payment and then asked for their money back, even though the beneficiary told them repeatedly.

          The ones who defraud a quarter mil off benefits are very rare – and some of them I’m pretty sure we don’t get the full story from the news (like is the sum calculated off a best guess the beneficiary admitted to in the first interview of when the non-declarations started. Could be a massive over-estimation they copped to before getting legal counsel, and they can’t afford lawyers to put the time into minimising that error).

          • Bill

            The ones who defraud a quarter mil off benefits are very rare ..

            Hen’s teeth, I’d say.

            The grandmother ‘stuff’ reported on last week ($250 000 over 15 years) was claiming about $317 per week. But what the report fails to mention is that she wasn’t charged with fraud for any portion of her clam that had been deemed fraudulent, but on the entire claim.

            I don’t know her circumstances, but could imagine she was maybe getting something like $20 or $50 per week she wasn’t really entitled to – so several thousands over 15 years, not hundreds of thousands.

            • weka

              Have you got a reference for the thing that they charge the full benefit rather than the overpayment? How does that work with the supplementaries?

              • Bill

                You mean a linkable reference? No. (Though I’m sure one could be found with enough searching)

                The “the entire claim in deemed fraudulent” is from memory having attended a Wellington Peoples Centre course some years back, and direct knowledge of a friend ‘done’ for not informing WINZ she had a partner.

                She actually didn’t have a partner ‘in the nature of marriage’ – no financial interdependence – but confessed to avoid criminal charges and because, with two children to look after, she feared a possible jail sentence. She had to pay back the entire claim for the period in question. And is still paying it back today – some 20 years later.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Sounds like a gross injustice to me, in law as well as fact: pretty sure financial interdependence is a requisite aspect of “a relationship in the nature of marriage”.

                  When WINZ is finally destroyed, all their decisions need to be revisited so that reparations can be made.

                  • Bill

                    Yes, it is (requisite). The shit happened about one year before the case/challenge that set that precedent.

                    I don’t know if the precedent applies retrospectively. But what I do know is that someone’s entire adult life has been fucking hobbled because of WINZ bullshit (and I don’t just mean financially).

                    It was with the above stuff in mind the other day that I was saying WINZ cases need to be trawled through and redress offered/secured for victims of the Depts mendacity/cruelty where it can be shown to have played a significant role in a decision.

                • weka

                  While I have no trouble believing that it happens in some cases, I’m not sure it happens in all or even most. Hence wanting a reference. I doubt that it’s online, but I guess it could be.

                  • Bill

                    All I have to say on that, is from a short google search and some rudimentary calculations, the supposed fraud always divides down to $310 – $320 per week.

                    In other words, it appears that the dpb payment is deemed fraudulent and recoverable while no calculation is made to determine what level of benefit “should” have been claimed in lieu of the dpb, with that total then being subtracted from the amount pursued by WINZ.

                    The linked document from Child Poverty Action Group mentions the same point.

                    And then there’s the fact that after a jail sentence (if one is handed down) the entire debt is still recoverable.

                    • weka

                      What key words are you using in the google search?

                      It would be good if you could quote the bit from the PDF (it’s very long).

                      “the supposed fraud always divides down to $310 – $320 per week.”

                      Not sure what you mean by ‘divides down’, but isn’t that the DPB rate? So if someone was claiming the DPB when they’re not entitled to it, wouldn’t that be the amount recoverable?

                      I’m not saying you’re wrong, just that it’s a serious issue that I think need clarifying as formally as possible.

                    • Bill

                      Divide the period of the supposed fraud by the amount being sought and it pans out at ~$320 per week.

                      I can’t remember the precise search terms I used. There are a variety of easy enough ones that will give you newspaper results connected to WINZ fraud.

                      If the entire dpb is clawed back, then the assumption is that the person was not entitled to any benefit whatsoever. But I know for a fact that people have been done for the entire amount when their alleged partner was not in work.

                      That being the case, they would have been due some amount of SS.

                      Also. If there was no benefit entitlement, then a number of dpb cases would be noticeably above that $320 mark because any accommodation top up and whatever else would have been lumped in.

                    • weka

                      Yes, I agree it is happening. I’m just not sure that it happens as the default. I’ve read about fraud cases before and not seen confirmation of the total benefit being recovered (also, does that included the supplementaries?).

                      Afaik, if someone is claiming the DPB while living with a partner who they share finances with, then they’re not entitled to the DPB. It doesn’t matter whether their partner is in work or not.

                      In that situation I would assume that WINZ would try and recover the full amount. DPB is currently $329/wk (net).

                      Yes, they should standardise benefits across all needs so that stupid shit doesn’t happen, but atm, the only people entitled to a DPB are those who are single parents.

                    • Bill

                      From page 29 of the CPAG report (which is peppered with suspected instances of “gouging” by WINZ)

                      A key finding of the Joychild report was that in many instances, the level of overpayment was overstated because the accused may have been entitled to some other benefit, referred to as ‘notional entitlement’.
                      In many of the overpayments established there has been no allowance made in debt calculation for the fact [that] the beneficiary would have been entitled to another benefit. This is commonly referred to in the department as notional entitlement. Hence the amount of the debt many beneficiaries are paying back is far higher than if they had in fact been on the correct benefit. (Joychild 2001)


                      The (Joy) report found ‘strong evidence that the incorrect test had been applied’ and recommended that all the 15,600 cases from 1996 to 2000 be reviewed by the Ministry.

                      Only 5 700 of those cases were reviewed and 63% of the cases reviewed had repayments reduced ($35 million worth of ‘wiped’ debt)

                      I highly recommend reading all of the 40 pages of the CPAG report.

                    • Bill

                      Actually, I’ll put this another way (with numbers pulled out of my arse because it’s just meant to be illustrative)

                      If someone has ‘fraudulently’ claimed a sickness benefit that amounts to a total WINZ payment of $200 per week, should WINZ be required to acknowledge that the person would have been entitled to $100 per week in straight unemployment benefit (or whatever) and then subtract that sum from the total they’re seeking to recoup?

                      Or should they be allowed to just go straight ahead and recover the full amount based on weekly payments of $200 per week?

                      Because that’s what they’re doing with dpb. Ie, they are not calculating any legitimate sum of money the claimant would have been entitled to and subtracting that from the monies sought.

                      And then they’re sending people to jail.

                      And then they’re pursuing full repayment when they are out of jail.

                      And if necessary,they’re taking monies directly from their superannuation 10 years later, or 20 years later.

                    • weka

                      Thanks for the DPAG cut and paste (am not likely to read the whole thing tbh, so appreciate that bit being pulled out).

                      See also my comments below to KP. I think what WINZ are doing is punitive and unfair, and that I think they’re focussed on the ‘lie’ not what is fair to the beneficiary.

                      What interests me right now is what the actual legislation says and the extent to which WINZ are taking policy direction from the govt on this. e.g. if we get a L/G govt, how easy is this to change? If there is precedent (e.g. in the CPAG report), then it should be pretty straight forward.

                      The other thing is that I think we should be differentiating between fraud and not declaring. Fraud to me is things like someone makes up an illness, lies to their GP and WINZ and gets onto SLP as a result. I think that that is pretty rare. But not telling WINZ about flatmates or partners or working for a couple of weeks last month, all that is happening under economic duress, and should be classified differently and dealt with differently. There are probably grey areas there too.

                      Someone posted recently about the difference in language between benefit fraud and tax ‘evasion.

                      Of course, removing the economic duress within the system would be the sane thing to do.


                  • Korero Pono

                    ” So if someone was claiming the DPB when they’re not entitled to it, wouldn’t that be the amount recoverable?”

                    Can I ask who defines what ‘entitlement’ is in this case because there is, as mentioned by Bill case law that shows that WINZ misinterpret or apply legislation incorrectly, particularly when it comes to relationship status and definitions of relationship. When someone steps outside of this entitlement, they may well have entitlement to other portions of benefit…I wonder if WINZ apply a blanket amount when convicting for fraud to include all money received rather than just the portion the person was not entitled to. Also I am sure I have read a case in the last couple of years or so where WINZ incorrectly formulated the ‘fraud’ amount and the person was judged and punished on that basis and then on top of said punishment (prison) were punished again by being forced to repay the money…it may have been in a piece of research I read, possibly CPAG or even Lisa Marriot’s research and from my vague recollection these stories are not uncommon. I.e. the media and WINZ I believe hype these cases up and exaggerate the actual amount to create a moral panic then use them to justify the intensified surveillance and policing of the beneficiary class. What I recall the research pointing out was that these fraud cases are punished several times over and that the punishment continues beyond the prison sentence imposed. I am not sure that WINZ are completely ‘honest’ about the degree of supposed fraud committed and are clawing back money to which the person was entitled to, including the many women who were convicted or forced to pay back money when their supposed partners went unscathed. The number of women I have known living in abusive relationships,unsupported in every which way one would presume of a loving relationship had no choice but to commit ‘fraud’ to feed their children and survive. Or the cases where women are forced into committing fraud by abusive partners and do so out of fear for their lives – WINZ would say these women were not entitled but should they be forced to pay this money back?

                    • weka

                      Yes, I agree the situation is hugely unfair and punitive. Bill clarified above, I’ll comment there too. I’m guessing what WINZ are doing is focussing on the ‘lie’ e.g. if someone claimed SLP when they weren’t sick, but didn’t have a job so were technically entitled to the dole, WINZ will look at the lie being around being sick therefore there is no entitlement to SLP at all (hence the full amount being recovered). Likewise, if someone is on the dole and working, then the full amount recoverable would be the dole rate, not the dole rate less the abatement for earnings. They’re punishing people for the lie.

                      I’m trying to get hold of the GP policy in text form so I can cut and paste from it and then write a post on what they would change. I’m not sure how much of the announced policy would make a difference to this issue, but I would expect it to be something that got looked at and change if the GP had the power.

      • WILD KATIPO 1.2.5

        srylands the astroturfer.

    • bwaghorn 1.3

      had a bloke ask me if i was going to defend Matiria all i asked was had ever paid someone cash or accepted cash for a job , because that is illegal and makes you no better or worse , he he should have seen him struggle to find a but but

      • mikes 1.3.1

        There’s nothing wrong with paying someone cash for work done and its most definitely not illegal to do so. (But you should get a GST invoice and receipt also)

    • Bill 1.4

      Maybe those numbers should be presented in the same way (rounded)?

      Tax fraud – $1.2 billion.
      Benefit ‘fraud’- $0.0 billion

      And then maybe remember that benefit fraud is not calculated on the difference between what was claimed and what ought to have been claimed, but on the total benefit claimed.

    • NZJester 1.5

      I had heard that the $30.4mil also includes overpayments that must be paid back and are not really benefit fraud at all. They are people being honest and declaring extra money they received.

    • NZJester 1.6

      Tax fraud $1.24billion and benefit fraud = $30.4million.

      When you have been gaming the benefit system by not reporting some extra money you made just to be able to survive you are a thief acording to right wingers, but when you game the tax system by hiding extra money you made away from the government so you do not need to pay tax on it your just being financially prudent with your money.

    • Jlo73 1.7

      Will both be considered OK under a Green’s government?

  2. Ed 2

    Ken Loach being interviewed by Kim Hill this morning just after 9 a.m.

    Quite topical as his latest movie, I, Daniel Blake, ‘depicted the lives of beneficiaries in today’s Britain and won a slew of awards including the Bafta for Outstanding British Film, 2017.’

    Will be worth listening to,

  3. Ed 3

    Chris Trotter’s political reaction and conclusions.

    ‘Weary National supporters are unlikely to cross all the way over to Labour if it means endorsing, even tacitly, the behaviour of “welfare cheats”. For these cautious Kiwis, NZ First will be “quite far enough, thank you”. Meanwhile, Labour’s increasingly disillusioned progressive supporters will listen to their party’s deafening silence on the heart-and-soul issues paraded front-and-centre by Metiria and the Greens – and draw the inescapable conclusion. That to keep faith with the legacy of Mickey Savage, Norman Kirk – and Rod Donald – there is only one way to cast their Party Vote.

    For the Greens.’

    Whole article here. Worth discussing.

    • Keith 3.1

      To be fair Chris Trotter cannot resist slagging off the Labour Party. He rubs shoulders with Hooten, Hosking and others and in that company is Just another anti Labour pro current government whiner.

      • To be fair, the Labour Party disconnected from its roots a long time ago and they’re making no effort to get back to them.

        • jcuknz

          Sadly I think the roots suffered terminal damage quite some time ago Draco.

          • Stuart Munro

            The roots always grow back. The right won’t serve the lower three quartiles at all; short of a final solution or the usually fictitious neo-liberal tide that lifts all boats, the left will always have a large support base. If a party can’t access that then maybe they’re not as left as they imagine.

        • mary_a

          That’s the impression I’m getting as well Draco (3.1.1). Almost seems Labour doesn’t want to put up a challenge and change the government.

          • Michael

            I agree with Trotter and the other commentarors above who agree with him: Turei has outwitted Labour and the right wing of her own Party by putting social justice at the top of the campaign agenda. Whether that translates into Party Votes remains to be seen but it’s a gutsy and principled move in stark contrast to National-lite’s continued attachment to neoliberalism.

            • The Chairman

              “Turei has outwitted Labour and the right wing of her own Party by putting social justice at the top of the campaign agenda.”

              Alternatively, the right wing of her own Party may have allowed her the rope to hang herself, with her demise diminishing the power the left within the Party hold?

              Who would be most likely to replace her? A candidate that has a wider voter appeal?

              • Tautoko Mangō Mata

                No one. Has Bill English been replaced for Double Dipping or because he may have acted unlawfully in a coverup of illegal spying?

                Court papers claim Bill English acted ‘unlawfully’ on Dotcom

                What English was told is not known – but he signed the only ministerial certificate known to have been issued, giving a total legal shield to anyone involved to refuse any court or other order revealing details.
                The certificate stated that making public the GCSB’s involvement “would likely prejudice the security of New Zealand” by undermining efforts to detect and prevent serious crime.
                It also said such publicity would harm New Zealand by damaging the flow of information from overseas intelligence agencies.

                When it emerged that Dotcom and two others spied on – his then-wife Mona and co-accused Bram van der Kolk – were New Zealand residents, the ministerial certificate collapsed because the GCSB had broken its own law to carry out surveillance on them.

                Key then apologised – although his comments at the time don’t appear to carry any specific reference to when the spying ended.
                The New Zealand Herald asked English’s office if he was made aware of the dates over which the surveillance took place – and whether he was told the spying went longer than the January 20 2012 date in court documents.
                The spokeswoman refused to answer, saying “as the matter may be subject to further court action, it would inappropriate to comment further”.


  4. Keith 4

    How about some context here.

    So she took money she wasn’t entitled to 20 years ago but said nothing all these years until now, slightly after rumours circulating of another prominent politician doing the same.

    Does anyone out there, who is not a political wonk, know what else the Greens stand for, in the last fortnight while this sucks the oxygen from the room.

    Or Labour? (not that their mega timid hide under the bed election strategy of sleep walking to defeat is the Greens issue)


    What we do know is Metiria gamed the system and few knew about it, has had a politically calculated and who knows why else mea culpa and that is the election strategy narrative.

    Meanwhile plenty over the years and right now are off to work, poorly paid, working long but uncertain hours in the hope that they and their families make it through the week, not gaming any system, and they are brimming with pride at middle class well paid Metiria?

    I doubt it.

    • aom 4.1

      You want context Keith – refer to the comment from Ed at 1.
      All we need now is for the the tax fraudsters, ‘cashie’ tradies, expense fiddlers and the like to have the courage to front up and admit their fraudulent behaviour like Metiria.

      • Keith 4.1.1

        Yep, and they will be rogered because the elite can rip the system off to their John Key sponsored tax haven hearts content, but ordinary working people, fuck off.

    • The Greens have turned a lazer onto the political smog that gathers at this point in the cycle, carving a swathe through the Billsh*t and bad ACTing that seeks to smother the discussion and cloak the furtive machinations of the Hollow Men and their grey flunkies as they pull the various levers that work the smiling lips and crooning voice to their collective “The Economy is King” mask, à la The Wizard of Oz. Crank up those dials, Greenies, make ’em squirm!

    • francesca 4.3

      I can assure you it was no “game” for Metiria and thousands of others, it was sheer survival, and not the “gameshow” kind, just as it wasn’t for the lawbreakers shipped to Botany Bay for stealing a loaf of bread in the 19th century

    • Meanwhile plenty over the years and right now are off to work, poorly paid, working long but uncertain hours in the hope that they and their families make it through the week, not gaming any system, and they are brimming with pride at middle class well paid Metiria?

      Probably. They know where she’s coming from because they’ve been there and you obviously haven’t.

  5. North 5

    “Enough!” – the loud cry of a silently cast party vote Green. The Hoskings and the Gowers can jump in their Maseratis or whatever brand of penis enlargers they slither around in and FO! They are not my moral guides and I have no pearls to clutch.

    • Johan 5.1

      Of course they can, and sadly they’ll have a prominent place on our screens during the election debates.

  6. Tony Veitch (not etc) 6

    @ Keith – some more context.

    Have a look at five minutes of this documentary to understand the environment beneficiaries were having to deal with in the 1990s. A benefit set, deliberately, at 20% below the poverty line would have prompted me to ‘game the system’ too.

    From 1.01 – to about 1.06. The whole thing is 1hour .44 minutes long. In a Land of Plenty.

    • Oh yes,… Ron Trotter of the ‘ Business Roundtable ‘ … now calling themselves the ‘New Zealand Initiative’ ,…

      This collection of social engineers that take their orders directly from the Mont Pelerin Society are responsible for much of the poverty and social decline we have had in New Zealand for the last 3 decades.

      Anyone needing a further explanation of just who these people really are can find out right here :

      New Right Fight – Who are the New Right?

      • srylands 6.1.1

        Yes I am sure you don’t like the New Zealand Initiative. Their research relies on this pesky stuff called evidence.

        You could always launch your own think tank.

        Or join ESRA

        It has been going a while now and I cannot see any significant outputs or impacts or peer reviewed published research.

        • WILD KATIPO

          Yes indeed its been going awhile, – even moreso it should end. I suggest an investigation into the NZ Initiative and its links to the London based Mont Pelerin Society as a start ,- and once established , – ( and that would not be hard ) just what role it has had in re-appropriating state assets owned by the public into their benefactors control. Along with the exceptionally low prices they paid for those former SOE’s.

          It would not be hard to follow the paper / money trail. And that trail ultimately would lead back to a nation thousands of kilometers away and the usurping of our social democracy.

          In a similar attitude in the way the TTPA was designed to have done. By using masked corporate’s to create ISD’s if that sovereign Nation passed legislation that those corporations deemed as inhibiting their profits.

          Except that the Mont Pelerin Society was successful in its theft whereas John Key and Tim Groser ( English ) was not.

          It would therefore not be hard to demonstrate political collusion.

          Mont Pelerin Society Directory – DeSmogBlog



          NEW ZEALAND

          Hon. Sir Roger Douglas
          1998, Life Member

          Mrs. Hanne Janes

          Mr. Roger L. Kerr
          New Zealand (Business Roundtable )

          Honorable Ruth Richardson
          Ruth Richardson ([NZ] Ltd

          * Is NZ now a LTD company in their eyes?

          Dr. Bryce Derek Wilkinson
          Capital (Economics Limited )

          So now that we have established that both Ruth Richardson and Roger Douglas were both Board of Directors on the Mont Pelein Society , it should not be hard to inquire as to who were the benefactors of the privatization process .

          It was NOT the public of New Zealand.

          I find it hilarious you that what you call ‘ evidence ‘ is no more than justification for two things :

          1) The enrichment and beneficiaries of those involved in the theft such as those of the above named of state owned assets – assets that were built up and paid for the taxpayers of this country over the decades .

          2 ) The bogus ‘ laws’ that were then passed to entrench this process such as the Employment Contracts Act among many . And Ruth Richardson’s ‘ Mother of all Budgets’ .

          And no , there is no need to even consider needing a ‘ think tank’ or any other red herring offering from you. Again , all I offer you is the very same you responded to , – and have completely failed to answer to or acknowledge.

          The same sort of lack of a willingness displayed by all of you immoral hypocritical neo liberals to confront the painful truths that led Metiria Turie to take moneys from the state to feed her child against the backdrop of Ruth Richardson’s punitive and immoral ‘ Mother of all Budgets’ . Ruth Richardson , Board of Director member of the Mont Pelerin Society.

          So answer these charges of immorality , hypocrisy and criminal treasonous acts the best you can. Until then , again…

          Read this fully and understand the tenuous ground you stand on in trying to protect these criminal subversives.

          New Right Fight – Who are the New Right?

          I know how they think and I know how they operate as I got to know Mr Richwhite , his wife and his then teenage sons back in the mid 1990’s over quite a long period of time .

          In Queenstown.

          • In Vino

            Yes, the NZ Initiative pull the same cover as BRT did. Pretend to be middle-of-the-road, and claim to be presenting a range of ideas from across the broad spectrum, with cherry-picked evidence to back up now and then… But they are transparently a Right-Wing pressure group, however much Srylands tries to pretend otherwise.

    • NZJester 6.2

      Rodger Douglas the man that helped ruin New Zealand by drifting Labour to the right and via his Act party he formed after leaving Labour is still helping to ruin it.
      In a perfect world a free market would work, the problem is there are too many greedy people willing to tip the balance in their favor for it to work. They have removed the power of the workers to fight for fair wages and rake in larger and larger profits never shared with their workers.

      • WILD KATIPO 6.2.1

        And yet ultimately , Roger Douglas and his ‘ Board of Directorship’ at the Mont Pelerin Society is way , way down on the list,…

        Almost the ‘ peasants’ and ‘gophers’ of the triangle…

        Even Baron Von Rothschild who through various other individuals and layered organizations controls the American Federal Reserve Bank ,… is much lower down on the list… if you really want to even start to ascend the ladder, you could start with the Bilderberg group , then the Council on Foreign Relations, the Trilateral Commission, the Club of Rome the Group 20 … all the way up to the 13 family’s that ultimately control global finances and thus global politics….

        If you really want to see this in a chronological order, perhaps check out this from Gary Wayne :

        Genesis 6 Conspiracy: Nephilm (Giants) Plan to enslave Mankind …
        Video for Genesis 6 Conspiracy: Nephilim (Giants) Plan to enslave Mankind/ Book of Enoch :NOWYOUSEETV▶ 1:17:11…16

    • JC 6.3

      Hey Tony. Great your not beating up your wife, or Whoever…..

      Much appreciate the link!. Wow! There’s All those politico’s (Most of them history now… But others like Jane Kelsie. Sue Bradford et al, ( I wont mention Douglas!!!) Probably essential viewing for any NZ er…

      Sadly I understand the SD environment well! NB. SD equals – Social Development
      What a Joke!!!!! ..

  7. Tautoko Mangō Mata 7

    The news media are more concerned with personality politics- and have yet to do a decent comparison of policies. However, National only released theirs on 27 July. The Metiria incident has used up a lot of oxygen for the last fortnight BUT it has got more people thinking about issues of inequality.

    This is one of the best articles I have read on the Metiria issue. It is written by a man, Grant Shimmin, who displays the sort of compassion that Mike Hosking and his ilk sadly lack.

    Those realisations about who I’m not tell me a few things, though, and the chief among them is this:
    As someone who’s never been on a benefit, and had to juggle the onerous reporting requirements of Winz, I am in no position to judge Metiria Turei for the past breach she’s confessed, to tell her how she should have handled it. I believe I’d do anything for my kids, but I’ve not been there. She and many others have.
    So it won’t surprise you to know some of the out-of-touch, self-righteous bluster emanating from the right-wing commentariat in the wake of Turei’s speech has made me want to throw up.
    It’s just so much white (mainly male) noise. Never mind that some of them own vehicles the cost of which could feed thousands of poverty-stricken kids for months.
    I’m not stupid enough to think the shouting’s not deliberate. From where I’m sitting, it’s a massive, concerted exercise in deliberately missing Turei’s absolutely valid point, in order to deflect attention from it ahead of an election.

  8. Sanctuary 8

    One thing the divided commentary highlighted for me was the clear class division. as well as the lack of diversity in our establishment MSM. The middle aged, white and well off males who dominate the MSM and have benefitted enormously from neoliberalism – Garner, Du Fresne, Franks, Soper, Gower, Hosking, Larry Williams etc etc, to which you can add the National party shills Audrey Young and David Farrar were united in their high dudgeon. In fact, I am pretty sure David Farrar almost had a nervous breakdown over it all, which is funny considering the amount of time he expends defending policies that see a quarter of a million other children growing up in poverty.

    The thing about that struck me most about that group of self-appointed opinion makers is how particularly economic and racially homogeneous they actually are, and it cause me to wonder exactly HOW they know how outraged “middle New Zealand” is with Turei. Soper and Garner and co like to imagine themselves as the champions of and voice of lean, hard working Joe Sixpacks on Struggle street but in reality they long ago ran to fat and have long had incomes that put them in the very highest income bracket. When these clowns howl about the rage of middle NZ, I am not so sure if they have a fucking clue about what middle NZ thinks.

    Conversely, when the media seeks diverse opinion – which for our MSM includes that half the population called “women” – views on Turei have been much more nuanced and much more sympathetic. Been there, done that, got the tee shirt is a common refrain from people who live on the real wages of real New Zealand.

    In New Zealand, the neoliberal establishment which sees the MSM in lockstep with the status quo political elite still sees itself as in absolute control. I don’t about the people here, but I watch shows like the “Young Turks” these days far more than I do our MSM. Hell, even that middle class liberal apologia thespinoff is more interesting than the Herald! Eventually, something like the Young Turks will happen here – and then you’ll start to get genuine diversity of opinion in the media.

    • When these clowns howl about the rage of middle NZ, I am not so sure if they have a fucking clue about what middle NZ thinks.

      They don’t. They’ve probably never been in the ‘middle’ but in the upper 5%. And now they’re in the top 1% and they’re completely disconnected from reality.

      And then there’s what the bottom 75% are thinking. The ones with an income less than the average wage. They’re not the middle either but they will know where Metiria’s coming from because they’ve been there.

      I don’t about the people here, but I watch shows like the “Young Turks” these days far more than I do our MSM.

      I don’t watch our MSM. I catch it every now and then but it doesn’t relate to me at all and I wonder just how many it actually relates to. Our broadcasters and politicians are disconnected from the reality that the majority of our people experience.

      And Labour has proved that it’s just as disconnected.

  9. francesca 9

    I’m amused by all these Metiria bashing commentators in well paid positions who pretend to champion all those “poorly paid, working long but uncertain hours in the hope that they and their families make it through the week, not gaming any system”
    Low wages and benefits insufficient for living are part and parcel of the whole system
    How many beneficiaries and I don’t mean the trust fund variety, or poor people do these frauds actually know, with their high minded versions of the deserving poor, noble savages indeed.
    Why have I never heard these worthies of the airwaves champion the working poor before, but come out in their droves when its an opportunity to bash beneficiaries
    Poorly paid workers and beneficiaries unite, the system is gaming you

  10. Craig H 10

    Turei may not actually have done anything wrong at all – then, as now, DPB recipients did not have to declare board from the first two boarders as income, and depending on the actual amounts, additional boarders may not count as income either (there’s a threshold calculated as a percentage of the accommodation supplement thresholds, and only board over the threshold is considered income).

    For flatmates instead of boarders, the money received is not income unless it’s above their share of expenses, but might affect the accommodation supplement as the rent figure for those calculations would be a share of the rent, not all of it.

    • From what she’s said, it was flatmates and their effect on the accommodation supplement she was worried about.

      • And if you’re worried about it you don’t tell. It may be that the number of flatmates she had wouldn’t have made any difference but she was fearful that trying to find out would result in a reduction.

        Yes, things were actually that bad. Simply asking for information could result in you being investigated because the assumption was that if you were asking you were already doing it.

      • jcuknz 10.1.2

        Psycho … perhaps as I didn’t know the difference between a flat-mate and a border until my border kindly told me how the system worked and I gave them the cooked food they wanted to comply with the rules.

    • millsy 10.2

      In this case , it would be interesting to see the details of these flatmates and how much they contributed and in what way.

  11. bruce 11

    Mean while the report on the lengths WINZ staff go to to prevent grand parents getting their entitlements is quietly buried.

  12. mary_a 12

    NZ needs more politicians with experience at the coal face of life. Might get some humanity then, instead of the present cold hearted, uncaring political scene.


    • srylands 12.1

      By “coalface” do you mean the sciences, business, property, farming, construction, resource extraction, power generation, financial services, tourism, and transport and logistics?

      Yes that would be marvellous.

      But I think you mean welfare recipients, activists, and union members, community garden organisers and actors.

      • Psycho Milt 12.1.1

        By “coalface,” does she mean people who’ve never been poor and never struggled to pay rent or put food on the table? No. No, she doesn’t. We already have a government consisting almost entirely of such people – more of them are not needed.

      • weka 12.1.2

        Really helpful to see your prejudices so clearly displayed srylands. This is exactly what the Greens have been speaking about.

  13. Chris 13

    I have zero problem with my tax money going towards helping those in genuine need.

    And from personal experience I know the issues that people who have required that help face.

    I do have a problem with Metiria turning this into a political tool, in what was obviously a planned stunt, to try to get some headway against a fairly rampant Winston Peters taking up all the media space.

    She is also now trying vainly to backtrack now it has back fired on her.

    Did she seriously not think it would lead to other questions being asked about her truthfullness of actually how tough she had it?

    Did she not think people might start asking about whether the father had any imput, or was one of the flatmates?

    And the highly paid Labour MP grandmother of her daughter? Was she some horrible person who really didn’t help her out, so she couldn’t afford to feed her kid and had to steal?……..Um. Something is screaming bull#### here

    I mean, come on. Spot the lies

    And the standing for joke parties so she couldnt work part time?

    She may well have thought highlighting the plight of beneficiaries could help beneficiaries as well as help their election chances, but she has done the worst thing possible and just turned the whole subject into, it’s all about me.

    • She is also now trying vainly to backtrack now it has back fired on her.

      Really? I went to her and James Shaw’s roadshow on Thursday night and after she spoke about why she’d done this, she got a standing ovation. I didn’t notice any vain attempts at back-tracking.

      Did she seriously not think it would lead to other questions being asked about her truthfullness of actually how tough she had it?

      She sure did, because the depth of contempt and hatred that right-wingers feel towards beneficiaries was well known to her. However, she was also aware that it would lead more thoughtful people to ask a different set of questions – like, how did our social welfare system come to this? And, how do we fix it?

      • jcuknz 13.1.1

        Spot on Phycho there.
        National would be good if they could forget the Benebashing and show some consideration for those without the luxury of work.

    • weka 13.2

      She didn’t make it all about her, the media and the right have done that.

      I can tell you from experience (my own and from people I know) that having a well off family when you are on a benefit is no guarantee of being able to make up income on a weekly basis over the long term.

      You can call it a stunt, but funny how so many lefties and poor people are excited, relieved, grateful for what the Greens have done. It’s the moralistic hypocrites that think beneficiaries deserve punishment that don’t like what Turei and the Greens have done.

      Amongst those hypocrites are the ones who believe in the deserving poor. You like you are one. The problem there is that the system punished everyone simply for being a beneficiary or being in need. This is where the lines have been drawn. Do you want a compassionate system or a punitive, demeaning one? Whatever your personal feelings about MT are, they’re actually irrelevant to the what the real issues here are.

      • Stuart Munro 13.2.1

        One of the biggest things of being on a benefit is the bullying.

        Suppose you were one of the many MoT whistleblowers whose careers were blighted by a certain fraudster, and probably temporarily obliged to seek assistance from Winz. It’s a struggle just to get by, and the heavy helpings of scorn and deliberately time-wasting runarounds don’t help at all.

        Metiria won’t necessarily get them another cent – but her moral support is a significant relief. Bad things happen to good people – especially in a country in the talons of a corrupt third world kleptocracy.

      • Ian 13.2.2

        The line has been drawn and the fat lady has sung.It will soon be all over for the green princess .
        She lived by the sword that will despatch her back to the reality of life.
        The reality is that voters are not impressed

    • I do have a problem with Metiria turning this into a political tool,

      Meanwhile you and the other RWNJs have turned into a political tool and use it to attack beneficiaries.

      You’re Making Shit Up™ because reality doesn’t suit your beliefs.

      • weka 13.3.1


      • Chris 13.3.2

        I haven’t attacked anyone, but Metiria

        Making out she is some sort of messiah for all genuine beneficiaries is frankly laughable and also pretty sick.

        She is making a mockery of those that struggle on the benefit, that aren’t criminals.

        The fact you could argue she actually advocates crime makes it worse

        • weka

          She doesn’t advocate crime, and DTB argued that you’re making shit up. Which you are.

          • Chris

            She does by their own policy of having no onus on anyone to abide by the law, while being proud of her own actions

            Saying someone is making shit up is not argueing

            It is just an accusation

            I don’t see any counter arguement

            [citation needed that the GP have a policy that says that there is no onus on anyone to abide by the law. You need to provide links and cut and paste the relevant portion. You’ve got until the end of the day to back up what you said, or withdraw and admit you just made that up, otherwise I’ll moderate (expect a lengthy ban). I suggest reading the Policy esp the bit about wasting moderator time. – weka]

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              The knowledge that your views are despised should be enough for you. Imagine all the hate speech about beneficiaries, then turn it around on yourself.

            • weka

              see moderator note above.

            • Chris

              I apologise

              This is not true. I did indeed rather stupidly make this up

              She does by their own policy of having no onus on anyone to abide by the law

              There is no mention of abiding by the law

              Their policy is this

              There will be (not their exact wording)

              No sanctions for not attending excessive appointments – (As far as I can see, there is no clarification as to what is “excessive”.)
              No checks to see if an original sickness situation has changed
              No questions about whether someone is living with their partner
              No requirement for sole mothers to name the father of the children to gather child support
              No requirement for testing to see if someone is in a position to work


        • One Anonymous Bloke

          You really don’t get it do you? That hate you’re feeling is nothing compared to the contempt in which your flaccid opinions are held.

          As far as I’m concerned, people like you are the lowest of the low. Think Stewart Murray Wilson, then you.

          • Chris

            I don’t hate anyone

            I was brought up by a sole mother

            The only hatred seems to be from you to me going by your assessment of me.

            But that’s cool as I don’t really give a rats about your opinion

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              I loath your views, your support for the attacks on Metiria Turei, your lack of empathy for the situation she has called attention to.

              Do you believe human rights are universal? What better word for systemic discrimination but “hate”?

        • WILD KATIPO

          Pike River

          Christchurch rebuild fiasco

          Undemocratic sacking of councils

          Saudi sheep deals

          Illegal GSCB spying scandal

          Operation Burnham

          Orivida Kauri logs and milk powder

          Double Dipping @ Dipton

          Honest John –

          And right wing nutters dare to criticize someone who owns up to having to bend the law to feed her baby ??? !!!

          I would be careful if I were you,… the lists of hypocrisy is far too long to mention here…

          So as far as I and hundreds of thousands of others are concerned , this is the song that best places the National party…

          Sherbet – Howzat 1976 – YouTube

          • Chris

            bend the law


            • WILD KATIPO

              Yes,… bend the law… to feed a baby.

              – Unlike straight out ripping people off as in the examples above by adults who were not concerned about having to feed a small child.

              Funnily enough , that same sort of odious ilk in one case also included some ‘ knights of the realm’ – who were also former prominent National party politicians during the same time frame as Metiria was doing her study’s as a young woman .

              … And years later when they were older , obscenely rich , retired politicians ( some of them ) and should have known better ,…after having heisted over $31,000,000 each ( $ 127, 000,000 total ) from investors , – STILL retained their knighthoods and were only sentenced to ‘ community service’ and ‘ home detention ‘ ,- no doubt not slashing gorse but manning a comfortable library stall or some other such hypocrisy…

              Or worse still , drinking port and relaxing in front of the television in their mansions…

              So ,… the accusations of gross hypocrisy still stands, … as does the warning to be a little more careful next time on where you like to throw your shit around .

              And the song remains very much the same in your case as well.

              Have another good listen to it so the penny drops…

              • srylands

                Where was the father? Or more particularly, where was his money? There should have been no need for any state support at all.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Why do ACT bludgers whose entire income is derived from the taxpayer use the word “should” so much?

                  Because in the real world, none of their beliefs ever come true, no matter how much money they bludge with their “advice”.

                • McFlock

                  There should be no need for anyone to receive state support.

                  If there is a need for state support, that support should be sufficient to live in dignity.

                  If the state support is insufficient, we should not criminalise beneficiaries who break the rules to get sufficient support.

                  If we do criminalise beneficiaries who have to break the law to get sufficient support to feed themselves and their kids, our elected representatives should say this openly and say that it is not acceptable, and say that they will improve the system so this is not needed.

                  Turei and the Greens are basically the only ones in parliament actually doing what they “should”.

                • I notice you have not even bothered to answer to a man far more intellectually endowed than you , srylands .

                  The Late Hugh Price , who with razor precision and investigative skills went right to the heart of the matter as to why we are even debating these things.

                  New Right Fight – Who are the New Right?

                  And until you can refute that ,… your opinions ( which are mere opinions , not fact ) are groundless when weighed against the true spirit of the law. And the true spirit ( unlike your deliberately warped and self serving version ) of the law also takes into consideration such things as mitigating circumstances, compassion , necessity for survival among other things.

                  That is why under the law self defense in the defense of oneself or another is permitted within reason .

                  You seem to think it is OK to persecute solo mothers and small children.

                  That to see them go without the necessities is somehow OK.

                  And to purposely forget that sometimes events happen whereby the father cannot be named out of fear . That sometimes the father may even have a history of physical violence. But you in your wisdom are quite happy to expose women and children to a vengeful , violent and aggressive ex partner.

                  Have you ever stopped to think about this in its entirety ?

                  Obviously not.

                  Therefore it is well that you only express your ignorance on a blog such as this instead of having any real influence in legal matters and the very real and pragmatic reality’s of life.

          • srylands

            Firstly there are very few right wing nutters in New Zealand.

            Secondly the current government is a socialist government. In practice the choice at the election is between two broadly left major parties. The Greens are simply communists but are unlikely to ever ever be in government in New Zealand.

            Thirdly your list is a childish litany of schoolboy fiction. You come across as very immature.

            • WILD KATIPO

              … ” Firstly there are very few right wing nutters in New Zealand ” …

              * You , and your fellow sycophant’s and astroturfer’s represent on these forums at least , the classic profile of the right wing nutter. Inasmuch as you do not like that label because it reminds you of the odiousness of fascism , … yet you are more than happy to use the pejorative terms ‘ radical’ ‘ leftist’ to imply ‘ communist ‘ or ‘ Marxist ‘ to denigrate those who adhere to traditional ‘ left ‘ values such as egalitarianism , the welfare state and award rates for working people.

              Thus you hope to demonize and alienate those who oppose your neo liberal subversion.

              … ” Secondly the current government is a socialist government ” …

              * This government is nothing at all like a ‘socialist’ government. Either you are very ignorant or are trying to use the same sort of pejorative terms as named above. This govt is a NEO LIBERAL govt that has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with Keynesian economics, or any other genuine ‘socialist ‘ govt in the past or present.

              The reality is this : that this govt is in the process of , yet finding resistance growing because of two factors.

              1) Because it is attempting to put the final touches of the dying neo liberal experiment in place in NZ and the people are clearly resisting this and wanting a return to a more fairer social democratic style govt that we used to enjoy.

              2) Because of NZ ‘S past they find they cannot quite erase the long history of NZ’s egalitarian history. This presents a major thorn in their side , – and hence why , – there is such a move to rewrite our history by deniers such as your self. Only serving to show you up for either the pig ignorant illiterates or downright liars that you are.


              … ” In practice the choice at the election is between two broadly left major parties ” …

              And again we see your attempts at diversion. Quite happy to humor your stupidity. You do this ,… because you hope to practice ‘ wedge politics’ .

              It is an easily seen through tactic of shallow lackeys such as yourself to deny the reality of the MOU between Labour and the Greens. Equally , it is an attempt to advance the idea that we still operate under the old First Past the Post system.

              We don’t. It is MMP here thanks , my little American sycophant.

              ( and btw ,.. trying on american style politics over here in NZ wont get you anywhere. )

              Also , as demonstrated . The National party is clearly NOT a left party whatsoever. It is not even a conservative party. You can have conservative left govts. What you deliberately seek to mislead people about is the fact that it is a party taken over by NEO LIBERALS.

              Please be honest.

              Deception is not a virtue.

              People are hung in some states for such things.


              .. ”the Greens are simply communists ”…

              * this one should elicit peals of roaring laughter from anyone who realizes this is no longer the 1950’s , that Sen . Joe McCarthy is long dead, the Cuban Missile crisis is over and the Berlin wall came down way back in the 1980’s.

              Gotta hate them Goddamned Pinkos, eh , Duke?

              You show your ultimate desperation and ideological fanaticism and detachment from reality. It begs the question why I bother to reply , –
              barring the humor it elicits in doing so.

              … ” the Greens are simply communists but are unlikely to ever ever be in government in New Zealand ”…

              * Truly a statement worthy of much mirth. The truth is you are a truth denier. You are a truth denier ( and a poor political annalist , – or even paid for troll ) because you are hoping that people will miss the obvious : that being , … that the MOU has been in effect for a very long time now and it was always intended that there would be a coalition with Labour . And that vehicle is the MOU.

              Everybody knows that.

              Everybody except you , it seems.


              … ” Thirdly your list is a childish litany of schoolboy fiction. You come across as very immature ”…

              * This last one is particularly delicious. Not only totally subjective , but a personal attack thrown in for good measure. And the reason for that is clear. You are angry and frustrated , and you realize you cannot refute ANY of the points raised. And that you looking more and more foolish the longer you type. Carry on.

              But if indeed you are going to,… at least have the common decency to demonstrate that A) you have read Hugh Prices article, and B ) after you have , attempt to refute it , then perhaps C ) try to present not only a case against that , – but also a justification as to why hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders have had to do what Metiria had to do in order to provide for their children.

              But bewares , – even if you somehow succeed in that against the odds , – at the end of it all you will still be coming out of it looking like a total shit for brains American sycophantic neo con arsehole.

              Good luck !!!

              Oh ! – almost forgot ! … here it is again to refresh your memory .

              New Right Fight – Who are the New Right?

            • Michael

              “Firstly there are very few right wing nutters in New Zealand.” I beg to differ.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Firstly there are very few right wing nutters in New Zealand.

              But they do include you, all National Party MPs and ACT.

              Secondly the current government is a socialist government.

              No, it’s a radical RWNJ government – you just happen to even further out than Planet Key.

              And everything you’ve written there is pure ad hominem – as per normal RWNJ MO.

      • srylands 13.3.3

        This fiction again that there are “right wing” people in New Zealand. I guess there are some but they don’t matter and they will never be in government.
        The attacks you refer to are from ordinary New Zealanders. Socialists in other words.

        I suggest you get out of your online bubble and head down to the local pub. A pub frequented by road construction workers, tradies, chippies labourers. You know, your Right Wing Nut Jobs. Raise benefit scammers. See how that goes for you.
        Referring to anyone in New Zealand as right wing is delusional. Calling people nut jobs is simply rude and immature.

        • McFlock

          This fiction again that there are “right wing” people in New Zealand.

          The only reason you think there are no right wing people in NZ is because pretty much everyone in the country is left wing compared to you.

          Kyle Chapman included.

    • Brigid 13.4

      “And the standing for joke parties so she couldnt work part time?”
      What are you talking about? She had a full time job as a sole parent.

      Full time as in on call 24 hours a day 365 days a year. Not something you’re familiar with obviously.

      I don’t understand why you, Guyon Espiner and others expect that any free time she had should be spent seeking other work.

      Why is she not entitled to spend her free time as she sees fit?
      Just as you are.

      • Chris 13.4.1

        Why is she not entitled to spend her free time as she sees fit?

        I woul’d’nt have a problem with her spending her free time standing for some joke parties if it weren’t for the fact she said she could’nt afford to keep her kid well, which is why she said she had to steal.

        Personally I put getting a part time job as a better option than going with the joke parties and stealing.

        But fair point, it was her choice

        [lprent: Your choice is apparently to be a lying arsehole stealing my bandwidth to propagate the crappy lies you make up. My choice is to kick you off the site permanently. No real difference apart from the language. But I will be as generous as your apology I saw elsewhere and only ban you for 3 months for being stupid and not applying your own criteria to yourself.

        It is all about what position of moral stance that you choose to take when you don’t even bother to consider the situation of others eh? Anyone with as few morals or scruples as yourself and do it. And so can I… You ridiculous fuckwit ]

      • srylands 13.4.2

        A full time job as a parent? You think that is an option we should all pay for? If you want to be a “stay at home mom” as the Americans say, find yourself a handsome commercial lawyer for the father. That way if you ditch him you can nail him for child support.

        I see in this case the whole father child support thing is just absent. No questions. Just uncomfortable silence. I bet the guy is fucking uncomfortable. We all know who he is.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          And that was a political message from the lovely bludgers of taxpayers’ money from the 0% support party.

        • McFlock

          I don’t know who he is.

          I don’t even care.

          Because I’m not a panty-sniffing toryboy.

        • The Fairy Godmother

          Being the mother of a young child or infant is a very vulnerable time. Human infants are very undeveloped and vulnerable. Most humans and some other species have cultures or habits which protect the mother and care for her. It is how the whole group survives. Our weird individualistic culture is a travesty of the natural order. As a mother I was supported by a husband who had a reasonably well paying job and also my family as well as the playcentre community. Metiria did not have a partner who was in a position to support her. That does not make her or her child less in need of support. Metiria and I both needed support as the mothers of young children. All mothers are Metiria and we as a society need to value mothers and support them when they need support. If we had no mothers we woudl be extinct in a generation or two.

          • Psycho Milt

            Good for you. My kids went to professional childcare from six months when their mother went back to work. Good for her. Let’s not bullshit ourselves about this.

          • Draco T Bastard

            If we had no mothers we woudl be extinct in a generation or two.

            But for a beautiful moment in time…

          • WILD KATIPO

            @ The Fairy Godmother

            Good on you , mate. If I had my way , mothers who stayed home to look after their children would be bloody well paid to do so. My mother stayed home to bring us kids up after she got married and stopped working in paid work and stayed that way.

            She is 91 years of age and still drives around Auckland traffic and still visits people . And all through her life she did nothing but look after her grand children , look after aging elderly parents, friends and relatives , take her sisters shopping who lacked drivers licenses , ran a clean house , cooked meals, dug and planted a garden to feed us, looked after our dogs ( big breeds – German shepherds and Huntaways etc) , made hot cups of tea for Police and the trampers they were searching for in the bush ( when they were found and brought back to our house – Dad was a ranger) did the same when there was a forest fire for the firefighters etc , fed the chook’s, did the washing, the vacuuming, and a ton of other real life activity’s that actually meant something – and she still is a happy easy going person with an annoyingly silly sense of humour.

            At 91 years of age. She leaves me and others in their 50’s in the dust .

            My mum is an old school Mum.

            They bred em tough during the Great Depression and World War 2 days.

            Therefore, all honour , respect and a blessing to all those who find themselves mothers and those who perform those constant unsung acts of service for others that keep this society running.

            And good on Metiria for speaking up and out.

            Its time we all started getting real again.

        • Draco T Bastard

          A full time job as a parent?


          You think that is an option we should all pay for?


          If you want to be a “stay at home mom” as the Americans say, find yourself a handsome commercial lawyer for the father. That way if you ditch him you can nail him for child support.

          And there’s sorrylands support for immoral actions.

          I see in this case the whole father child support thing is just absent.

          How much child support is brought in from absent parents?
          How much does it cost to actually get it?
          How much is actually needed?

          Once you find out those things I suspect that you’ll find that chasing it just isn’t worth the effort.

          And the rich fuckers won’t be paying any child support anyway because they’ve got lawyers and accountants to prevent having to do so.

  14. Pat 15

    it is the sound of fear….lets hope there are a million ears listening

  15. Ad 16

    It will do not much for the Green vote,
    Negative for the Labour vote,
    And really positive for the NZ First vote.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1

      Turei took a risk. Only a fool would be so confident of the outcome. Let’s hope to witness your humiliation.

      • srylands 16.1.1

        Really? You think a commentary on The Standard is going to be “humiliated” because he gets wrong a casual piece of speculation? You live in a very weird world.

        • WILD KATIPO

          … ” Really? You think a commentary on The Standard is going to be “humiliated” because he gets wrong a casual piece of speculation? You live in a very weird world ” …

          I don’t know about that but I have see you and your mate Chris are looking quite ridiculous the more you type.

          And if I were you ?…

          I’d give it all away before people start seeing you move onto the next inevitable stage as appearing downright miserly … and worse,… a vicious bastard.

    • Chris 16.2

      Tend to agree

      Winston must be laughing his butt off

      • WILD KATIPO 16.2.1

        Oooooo ,… I wouldn’t say that ,… judging by the sheer volume of times he has loudly criticized neo liberalism… neo liberalism best legitimized by the National party and ACT.

        Like srylands , … the more you type,… the worse you start to look.

        Word of advice , shithead… give it away while your still ahead. Else you will end up looking like this .

        kill bill flying kick elle – YouTube
        Video for kill bill you tube clips elle▶ 0:09

    • swordfish 16.3

      Yep … I’d say all 3 predictions more likely than not. Wouldn’t rule out a mild swing to the Nats either. Hoping against hope – the next round of Polls won’t be too bloody for the Left.

      Second consecutive Election in which Labour finds itself watching helplessly from the sidelines as Parties or Individuals to its Left cheerfully go for the Nuclear option, seemingly with wild abandon (& a lack of nous about the nuance of majority opinion).

      Don’t get me wrong – I agree with the core of the Greens welfare policy – long overdue (albeit electorally risky) – but not the clumsy ham-fisted way Turei’s gone about it – Open Goal territory. Handing it to the Farrars of this world on a plate.

      Greens targeting Left-Lab voters & praying for non-voters – apparently while none too concerned about effect on wider Left vote.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 16.3.1

        Oh sure, Labour were just about to galvanise the wider Left vote any day now 🙄

        It won’t surprise me if there is a limited effect on opinion polls. If Turei’s gamble pays off we won’t know until the 23rd.

        • swordfish

          Oh sure, Labour were just about to galvanise the wider Left vote any day now

          Never said they were – more concerned about the wider Left vote sinking like a stone.

          And please try & go easy on the eye-rolling motif – it’s like being savaged by an amusingly petulant 13 year old …

          Oh, what-eveeer !!!

          I didn’t ask to be born !!!

          Speak to the hand coz the face aint listening !!!

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            That’s the nature of the risk Turei has taken. Obviously you think more of the electorate are hate-filled dupes than I do.

            • Red

              To be fair I see more hate fuel speech coming from the likes of you and some of your friends than from rwnj, you seem to hate peoples for simply not agreeing with you 😀😆😂☺️😇

              [Can’t help yourself, it seems. Same type of comment again as here. (Go look)] – Bill

      • Pat 16.3.2

        “Hoping against hope – the next round of Polls won’t be too bloody for the Left.”

        it is entirely possible (perhaps even likely) that any increase in historical non vote moving to the Greens will not be reflected in any poll except the one that counts.

      • but not the clumsy ham-fisted way Turei’s gone about it

        It was neither clumsy nor ham-fisted.

        It was simply the truth that so many can relate to.

        • swordfish

          It was neither clumsy nor ham-fisted

          Κύριε Πρόεδρε, νομίζω ότι έγινε κάποιο λάθος !!!

          • Draco T Bastard

            No, really, I’m not. It’s the type of statement that will engage those that have been ignored and ridiculed by politicians over the last few decades.

          • Robert Guyton

            “Κύριε Πρόεδρε, νομίζω ότι έγινε κάποιο λάθος !!!”

            “a controversial admission of DPB fraud has given the Greens a massive boost.”

  16. … ” This is exactly the reaction that the usual cast of right-wing commentators are terrified of. Exactly what they are trying to shut down. I think that the louder they shout, the more ordinary people are going to side with the under-dog ” …

    ‘ Fair cop , cobber ‘ , as the Aussies would say.

    ‘ Fair go , mate ‘ . as the Kiwis would say.

    So what are we waiting for? !! ?

    The sky to fall in ?

    Lets all get out and vote this September and get rid of this shitty National non government. Lets all give em a dose of their own stinking shit for a change. See how they like it.

    Some might see Metiria as some sort of bad advertisement for the right to use. Others see it as typical rugged and gutsy Kiwi plainspeak.

    As I see it ?

    Its been a whole long time since New Zealand has seen blunt truth and there are many who are chickenshit terrified by it.

    Good on you , Metiria ,… it needed to be said. Thank you.

  17. mpledger 18

    Is their a statute of limitations on this stuff anyway? If something dodgy happened 20 years ago, is it too long ago to do anything about?

    Wasn’t part of the complaint about Bank’s electoral returns unactionable because it happened too far in the past (IIRC was there something like a six month statute of limitations)?

    • weka 18.1

      I think the time limit starts from when the offence is known not when it was committed, and is designed to not allow authorities to use excessive time to investigate and prosecute. However I suspect that in this case it would still be hard to bring charges. People are assuming she will be charged, but it’s not a given. She may just be asked to pay it back.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1.1

        The obvious alternative is that the vicious scum will prosecute. Nothing would surprise me. Naturally, I hope [deleted] or at the very least lose the election.

        [You already know that advocating violence is against the site rules. Am getting sick of moderating your comments OAB, can you please just dial back the aggro? – weka]

    • srylands 18.2

      There was no time limit before 2011. The Criminal Procedure Act 2011 established a time period of five years during which Category 3 offences had to be laid. Fraud is such an offence.

      However it is not clear whether that Act applies retrospectively. You should seek legal advice if you require a definitive ruling.

      Separately there is no time limit that applies to the recovery of benefit debt. So even if a perpetrator managed to avoid fraud charges, the benefits obtained fraudulently would still need to be repaid.

  18. Penny Bright 19

    Ex-Green, (in my opinion), now SELLOUT Vernon Tava – works for National and politically attacks Metiria Turei.

    How convenient. (For National).

    No real surprises there…..

    “Vernon Tava: Metiria Turei’s attitude proves the Greens aren’t 100 percent pure.”

    “A former top Green official .and leadership contender in 2015 has resigned from the party because he believes it has lost its way and he is now working with National.

    Though he has not joined National, Vernon Tava is part of the campaign team for Erica Stamford – an old friend — who is standing for National in East Coast Bays.

    “Vernon Tava
    Business Sales & Transition Specialist
    Licensed under the REAA 2008”

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-privatisation / anti-corruption’ campaigner.

    2017 Independent candidate for Tamaki.

    • Its not a new phenomenon, Penny.

      And I say that sadly.

      ” Ken Douglas, then president of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions, recalled in the 1996 documentary Revolution:

      The Employment Contracts Act was deliberately intended to individualise the employment relationship. It was a natural outcome of the ideological propaganda of rugged individualism, of self-interest and greed and the appeal to individuals that you could find better for you by climbing over the tops of your colleagues, your mates, and so on. Ruth Richardson was very clear, very blunt, very honest about its purpose. It was to achieve a dramatic lowering of wages, very, very quickly ”

      Ruthanasia – Wikipedia

      And yet it was Ken Douglas and Bill Andersen of the Northen Drivers Union that led the way in undermining the very unions they say they represented in helping to usher in the new neo liberal agenda…

      As this clearly shows:

      Defeat the Bill! The struggle against the Employment Contracts Bill, 1991…/defeat-the-bill-the-struggle-against-the-employment-contracts-bill…

      All of which I know you would be keenly aware of,… yet its for the benefit of all the other people who were not aware of these historical facts. Which make them fall victim to opportunistic sycophants like ‘ Chris ‘ and the very peculiar ‘srylands’.

      But as long as these resources are on the internet,… vicious little shrews like those
      above can achieve only limited traction , – and even then , – only out of peoples general political and historical ignorance.

    • srylands 19.2

      Pay your rates bill. FFS.

      • McFlock 19.2.1

        Congratulations. You actually got me to read a penny bright comment on the grounds that if all you have is the “pay your rates” complaint, she just might have a point…

        • weka

          lol, was it worth it?

          • McFlock

            we-ell once I got past the writing style, she had a point. I just thought it was a lot of effort to spend on a nobody who did nothing of note, though.

            • WILD KATIPO

              Pardon me ?…’writing style’ ?… annnnnd I dare say you would offer a critique on Chaucer and still come up with a negative commentary on archaic language skills….

              Content is what matters, sonny boy ,… good old fashioned content.
              Such is the essence of morse code and the thousands of lives it saved.

              Or the document poorly written and hastily scrawled that meant the difference between life and death.

              The incriminating written evidence that convicts the guilty of the heinous crime.

              The eternal truths given as the revealed truths to a future generation in archaic script known only to the few…

              Or , perhaps even … Nashnul are a buncsh of shity rip off artests that ned two bee voted out.

              No matter the phraseology or the syntax , the mastery of the written language , the intimate acquaintance with the use of syllables , nouns or verbs… we all know and agree with that sentiment … so why judge?

              I cannot for the life of me see anything wrong with Penny Brights ‘writing style’ at all. It is totally legible and understandable to even the average person … I think however , you might just be harboring a viewpoint that precludes a more fair and balanced opinion…

              • McFlock

                Hah. After skimming through that to the last paragraph – no shit you can’t see anything wrong.

                Although “wrong” is perhaps the wrong word. I just find that her style (and yours) is a barrier to communicating any coherent message. So I tend to avoid reading her comments, just as I often avoid reading yours, and just as (I am sure) many people avoid reading mine.

                My personal preference happens to be towards those comments that try to form coherent paragraphs with a clear subject, rather than a disjointed collection of links, quotes, and stream of consciousness composition.

                As an aside, I am a particular fan of the Oxford comma.

                • L0L !…. no… the REAL reason you avoid reading mine is that we crossed swords a few months back ,… therefore what you may perceive as a ‘ coherent paragraph’ truly is… in the eye of the beholder, and , as an aside…. not every one has the time to perform literary masterpieces to conform to the accepted standard by one McFlock.

                  Wars were started on misunderstandings such as that.

                  Therefore,… content , old boy , content.

                  Content always. First and foremost. Police and Judges make decisions on that and not the prose as admissible evidence.


                  As an example THIS :

                  Come On. Big Village. Be quick. Bring Packs.
                  P.S. Bring packs. W.W. Cooke


                  Who was it from, and who was it addressing ? ,… and no … ‘packs ‘ do not mean something you hike with . Nor was the term ‘Come on’ alluding to the modern sense of a flirtatious act .They mean packs of ammunition. And ‘ Come on ‘ means hurry the fuck up !!! Great literary masterpiece?


                  It was a message sent from W.W. Cooke to Benteen on General George Armstrong Custers commands and delivered by Giovanni Martini who had a thick Italian accent and who could not convey the message quickly enough in the heat of the moment to avoid possible confusion.

                  Custer’s Last Message – Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument …

                  Hardly a literary masterpiece.

                  Nor did it concern itself majorly with the ‘ Oxford comma’ .

                  Therefore ,… content.

                  Always content.

                  And sometimes certain literary standards have to be forgone and be given acronyms( a total butchering of any language) for the sake of efficiency. A little less judgement and a little more understanding required , perhaps , I must admit .

                  There’s a good man , we’ll make a soldier of you yet.

                  • McFlock

                    Did we disagree a while back? Oh well. It happens a lot, with me.

                    I’m not entirely sure, but doesn’t your Custer example actually support my point that if one wishes to be understood correctly, then one should endeavour to write clearly?

                    • Nah mate, it shows that the intent of the message is the important thing, .. it then is up to the beholder to have the necessary contemporary nouse and perception to mitigate the extraneous peripheral irrelevant details and get to the heart of the matter.

                      Contemporary can only be understood by an understanding of the parlance in use at that time ,… however , shorthand , abbreviations acronyms and even slang is used to convey meaning , … depending on the circumstance.

                      A five year old’s testimony can be used to help convict a pedophile, given qualified psychologists are used , … a semi literate peasant can do the same in a murder trial…

                      The more sophisticated purveyor of literary works of art does so at their leisure, the immediate and practical concerns of the serviceman and women not so much…

                      As to your question of :

                      … ” doesn’t your Custer example actually support my point that if one wishes to be understood correctly, then one should endeavor to write clearly ? ” …

                      In contemporary parlance of the day ,… it was as perfectly understood within those military cavalry circles then as an order given today in our SAS.

                      And yet today it seems as slang , sloppy , and imprecise. But not at all to Custer and his men.

                      Therefore, as to my original point,… please do not judge the writing style of people, … lest you risk losing the whole point behind it because of your temporal prejudices.

                    • McFlock

                      So he got the packs to Custer then?

                    • McFlock

                      Stopped when he got to Reno, eh. Apparently that was a close enough place to bring the packs, and his three companies, and still satisfy the requirements of Custer’s message…

                      Of course, maybe Custer meant benteen should bring the packs and his three companies to reinforce Custer’s doomed troops, but we will never know. The message was unclear, so we will never know what message Custer intended the content to convey.

      • WILD KATIPO 19.2.2

        srylands 19.2

        … ” Pay your rates bill. FFS ” …

        @ srylands

        Make sure the multinationals pay their fair share of the taxes they currently are not , – which Labour has included policy’s to ensure they bloody well do. I notice the usual right wing nutter sycophant brigade came on here squealing about that one as well about two weeks ago.

        Maybe then the common working people of NZ can have lower rates and social services, cheaper housing costs, higher paying jobs and better health and educational facilities , hmmm ?

      • greywarshark 19.2.3

        Go back to your retirement home FFS

        [That’s the kind of ageist commentary that isn’t needed greywarshark.] – Bill

        • greywarshark

          Right I have a valid criticism to make and will put it another way.
          Srylands you sound like someone who has got stuck in a groove that you have been in for decades, a few commenters are calling it RW ‘tribalism’. It seems that you can’t get out of it and have nothing useful to offer in a political discourse grappling with bad conditions now and expecting worse ones in the future. Perhaps you think you won’t be alive to worry about these, but the young ones today do have to worry and deserve our consideration.

          Ageism is a problem all right, many people who should be old and wise and just being old.

  19. AsleepWhileWalking 20

    The fact is our welfare system can be confusing and distressing to those untrained in welfare law.

    People lie when they don’t know if telling the truth will cause their children to starve or not. We need transparency in the welfare system.

    • Carolyn_nth 21.1


      Last week Metiria Turei made a shocking announcement, admitting she was a hardened criminal, on the run from the law.

      Years ago, as a struggling single mother, Metiria broke into the Prime Minister’s bedroom and ransacked his night stand (Treasury) and stole cash. I’m talking 10, 20, 30 (more than that?) dollars. She is basically a one-woman Ocean’s 11, or rather, the one women in Ocean’s 11. And she would have got away with it to, if it weren’t for her insistence that she announce it publicly. It’s fair to say, that in a perfect crime, that was her only real misstep.

      Then come the serious points later in the piece, summed up by this.

      It’s like a shop owner worrying about the till missing $5, while someone robs the place around them. Cutting back on loop holes for tax avoidance and convicting people for tax evasion is where our effort should be spent. In fact, you could start with the dozens of rich kids I knew receiving falsely receiving student allowances.

  20. At the time, Metiria Turei, a single mother with a young child, was studying to become a lawyer.
    This is a story of great value and pride for every New Zealander.
    Why is it that people prefer denigration to celebration?

  21. “Labour is bleeding in a new poll – but a controversial admission of DPB fraud has given the Greens a massive boost.”
    “Massive boost”

    Gosh! Who’d have predicted that!!??

    • mary_a 23.1

      @ Robert Guyton (23) … yep an increase from 11% to 15%. Obviously honesty in a politician is something many Kiwis appreciate. That’s good to see.

      Now those who said Meteria’s admission would have a negative effect on the Greens …. ?


    • Zid 23.2

      Greens have just moved bludger support from Labour, that’s all

      [6 month ban for blatant bigotry. That shit is no more acceptable here than misogyny or racism. Read the Policy about language that excludes others. – weka]

  22. Zid 24

    “Ordinary” people do not support Turei’s action. “Ordinary” people are people who work hard and pay their fair share of tax. They do not expect beneficiaries (and will never accept) people lying to increase their share of what already is a gift from middle class NZ

    • McFlock 24.1

      You’ve never paid or received a cash job under the table then?

    • Jeremy 24.2

      Oh look, Red is back.

      • weka 24.2.1

        I don’t think so, but they’ve been banned for blatant classist bigotry (above).

    • One Anonymous Bloke 24.3

      I meet your definition of “ordinary”. I support Metiria Turei. I despise your mealy-mouthed rote learned opinions.

    • Carolyn_nth 24.4

      Hard working people who are living in cars? on working for families? Need to visit a food bank? Are proud their children are going to uni and qualify for student allowance, then realise children of rich parents also get student allowance by rorting the system via trusts, etc?

  23. Sorrwerdna 25

    What do you think the reaction would be if Paula Bennett was accused of the same fraud as MT?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 25.1

      She already has been: you may have noticed that National are keeping very very quiet about it.

    • McFlock 25.2

      I think I for one would be aghast at her hypocrisy.

      It’s one thing to be a ladder-kicker, but to cut assistance that she personally found to be inadequate would be pretty contemptible.

      The benefit fraud – meh, maybe. But the utter hypocrisy of juxtaposing it against her political career? Yeah, nah.

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    Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones is streamlining high-level oceans management while maintaining a focus on supporting the sector’s role in the export-led recovery of the economy. “I am working to realise the untapped potential of our fishing and aquaculture sector. To achieve that we need to be smarter with ...
    1 week ago
  • Patterson promoting NZ’s wool sector at International Congress
    Associate Agriculture Minister Mark Patterson is speaking at the International Wool Textile Organisation Congress in Adelaide, promoting New Zealand wool, and outlining the coalition Government’s support for the revitalisation the sector.    "New Zealand’s wool exports reached $400 million in the year to 30 June 2023, and the coalition Government ...
    1 week ago
  • Removing red tape to help early learners thrive
    The Government is making legislative changes to make it easier for new early learning services to be established, and for existing services to operate, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. The changes involve repealing the network approval provisions that apply when someone wants to establish a new early learning service, ...
    1 week ago
  • RMA changes to cut coal mining consent red tape
    Changes to the Resource Management Act will align consenting for coal mining to other forms of mining to reduce barriers that are holding back economic development, Resources Minister Shane Jones says. “The inconsistent treatment of coal mining compared with other extractive activities is burdensome red tape that fails to acknowledge ...
    1 week ago
  • McClay reaffirms strong NZ-China trade relationship
    Trade, Agriculture and Forestry Minister Todd McClay has concluded productive discussions with ministerial counterparts in Beijing today, in support of the New Zealand-China trade and economic relationship. “My meeting with Commerce Minister Wang Wentao reaffirmed the complementary nature of the bilateral trade relationship, with our Free Trade Agreement at its ...
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon acknowledges legacy of Singapore Prime Minister Lee
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today paid tribute to Singapore’s outgoing Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.   Meeting in Singapore today immediately before Prime Minister Lee announced he was stepping down, Prime Minister Luxon warmly acknowledged his counterpart’s almost twenty years as leader, and the enduring legacy he has left for Singapore and South East ...
    1 week ago

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