As ever, too much National to complain about, too little time. So just 3 quickly –
As excellently covered by Karol, but too quickly dropped by our papers, the Salvation Army’s excellent annual State of the Nation report gives the Government a D on Child Poverty, Youth Employment and Housing Affordability.
Quite rightly the Sallies’ Major Campbell Roberts says:
“If our children came home with a ‘D’ from school, most of us would have a vigorous plan of action to turn it around. That same vigour is needed from our political and Government agency leaders.”
Roberts said we needed to stop saying, “She’ll be Right” and start saying, “It’s not alright” when it came to these issues.
And quite rightly Jacinda Ardern profiles the Government’s efforts:
“seems content to sit back while things steadily get worse for our kids”.
“Giving [the Government] a below average ‘D’ for progress on child poverty, the report makes specific reference to the Ministerial Committee on Poverty’s lack of action, yet the Government continues to claim the committee is making a difference.”
“That’s just rubbish. Both the White Paper on Vulnerable Children and Paula Bennett’s welfare reforms have been heavily criticised for either ignoring poverty or for making it worse.”
I’d give their efforts one word: Wrong. We need a better response to this crisis of Child Poverty.
Bill English trying to spin the high exchange rate as good for workers, as it keeps the price of flat screen TVs down. He points out the rising dollar meant there was some protection for workers’ living standards for the fact that under National our wages have barely risen.
Quite Rightly David Parker dismisses his rhetoric as:
“What they [manufacturers] want is an exchange rate which enables them to compete internationally so they can afford to pay wages,” he said.
“The idea that an artificially high exchange rate is good for New Zealand workers because it holds down the price of flat screen TVs is a nonsense if they can’t earn a decent wage.”
I’m sure most workers would prefer a lower exchange rate, higher wages and secure jobs because their companies can compete internationally.
Murray McCully refusing to meet West Papuan Benny Wenda, and the Government prompting the new Speaker to bar him talking to Parliament.
Just because we have $1 Billion in trade with Indonesia doesn’t mean we should suppress the stories of 50 years of oppression of those living in West Papua.