- - - - - - - - - - - - -

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Middle Class Pain hurts more in an election year than under class pain


Lobbyists float $4b solution to poverty
Child poverty lobbyists are calling for higher welfare benefits and tax cuts for the lowest income earners in next month's Budget - and axing tax breaks for the middle class. The Child Poverty Action Group, led by paediatricians and academics, wants to abolish tax subsidies for KiwiSaver and use the money to cut the bottom tax rate to 10 per cent on incomes of up to $20,000 a year. Its wide-ranging report also calls for extending free primary healthcare for children to after-hours accident and medical clinics and extending the policy of 20 hours a week free childcare to services such as kohanga reo and playcentres, which are parent-led rather than teacher-led. The whole package would cost more than $4 billion a year but that would be partly paid for by axing the KiwiSaver subsidies to save around $1 billion a year. The subsidies are expected to go mainly to middle-class families who can afford to save. The net cost of around $3 billion would be about twice as much as the $1.5 billion which Finance Minister Michael Cullen has publicly earmarked for tax cuts in the Budget, but he is widely expected to deliver somewhat more than he has promised. New Zealand came third-worst in the developed world in a Unicef survey of child poverty around the year 2000, with a quarter of all children then living in families earning less than 60 per cent of the median income.

Great Ideas from the Child Poverty Action Group, amazing solutions, it’ll never happen. Not because there isn’t real pain at the bottom, oh Lord there is, I mean as hard as the poor property speculating middle classes are feeling when buying milk, it is nothing compared to the real suffering at the very bottom, but this is election year and there ain’t no votes in saving the bottom from lives of hell and you have an electorate that is in no mood for kindness, they want National in, and there isn’t any milk of human kindness amongst that howling mob. Of course ignoring the poverty root cause of the problem dooms us to an ever decreasing circle of social problems that get talkback 101 solutions like ‘Lock em all up, bloody Maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaoris, they choose to be poor, blame the solo mums’ stuff. Great.

17 Comments:

At 29/4/08 9:44 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It really is a race to the bottom Bomber. Indeed - why all the media coverage on white middle class families having problems buying milk when nobody is focusing on those far less well off?

Thing is though: How is National going to fix any of this? I see the world in relatives and relative to Labour, National will be worse and do this country more damage. Privatisation doesn't help the poor - it will just strip them of their health and education.

 
At 29/4/08 9:54 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope they don't try to help the poor in the south island, aye bomber, that's banjo land, deliverance... right.

 
At 29/4/08 11:49 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Island_Independence

 
At 29/4/08 2:21 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I fail to see how giving those living in so-called poverty more money will actually do anything to address the problems we blame on poverty.

Many of those who are claimed to be living in poverty seem to have inordinate amounts of money to spend on alcohol, cigarettes, takeaways and not to mention huge T.Vs and vehicles paid for via H.P. Its not a lack of money thats the problem, its how the money is spent.

Their children aren't fed, clothed and educated poorly because of a lack of money, thats all a result of a lack of parenting ability and a culture of dependency.

The youth in such areas aren't breaking into dairies and stealing bread because they can't afford to eat, they are robbing people of cellphones, mag wheels from cars, liqour stores and the like. Giving the parents more money isn't going to change what causes crime in these areas.

More money isn't going to alleviate or accomplish anything. Its not going to stop bad parents from being bad parents and not feeding or clothing their children adequately. At the risk of being paternal the money should be spent on parenting courses and attacking the culture of dependency and depression in which teenagers and young adults end up having children which become just like them.

Unfortunately when you have leaders such as Tariana Turia encouraging young teenage Maori females to have more children its a problem thats not going to go away.

 
At 29/4/08 2:29 pm, Anonymous Ben R said...

The CPAG make some good points, but what about using contraception?

The majority of the children cited come from families receiving WINZ benefits. Isn't there an obligation on those receiving WINZ benefits, or Housing New Zealand accomodation/allowances to use contraception like the rest of us do?

I agree we need social welfare, but there has to be a reciprocal obligation not to take advantage of it.

Birth control has enabled women to have greater equality & WINZ should be encouraging long term beneficiaries to practice it.

Increasing benefits will ultimately lead to the whole welfare system collapsing under its own weight.

 
At 29/4/08 4:44 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have heard a few rough comments about Maori out here in the provinces, but I have never heard anyone say "Maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaoris" like some sort of foghorn. Who actually says it like that? Have you been out of your insular bubble in Auckland?

 
At 29/4/08 4:56 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I doubt that bomber has ever been to the South Island. Bomber probably believes that New Zealand is only north of the Bombay hills.

 
At 29/4/08 6:47 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm in the provinces in the Far North Anon 4.56 but I get your point.

 
At 30/4/08 3:00 am, Blogger Paul said...

"I agree we need social welfare, but there has to be a reciprocal obligation not to take advantage of it."

LMAO.

When cops can't find the time to investigate crimes you expect social workers to do something other than say "yes but get a job" and leave it at that? People on the benefit have no sense of rights and responsibilities, they say "yeah yeah but give me money" and their on their way, buying weed and what not. If beneficiaries had a sense of 'obligation' they wouldn't turn up to compulsory job interviews and out-right tell the interviewer that they have no intention of taking the job, or if they find a job turn up to it and expect to be able to drink on their lunch break and not do any work all day. WINZ needs the power to tell people "yeah but you've been on the dole 6 weeks, so um, have fun in the gutter", maybe some REAL hardship would learn em'.

The problem with ideology is that you actually CAN'T tell the world how it works just because it SHOULD work that way. Sometimes people just suck.

 
At 30/4/08 7:47 am, Blogger Bomber said...

...
It really is a race to the bottom Bomber. Indeed - why all the media coverage on white middle class families having problems buying milk when nobody is focusing on those far less well off?

Thing is though: How is National going to fix any of this? I see the world in relatives and relative to Labour, National will be worse and do this country more damage. Privatisation doesn't help the poor - it will just strip them of their health and education.

VERY good point, National still are not telling us what they would do above 'cutting tax' as that won't do a fucking thing, part of me wants to see Nationbal get in as it will only be a one term government when NZers wake up to what the Nats want to do to NZ.

I hope they don't try to help the poor in the south island, aye bomber, that's banjo land, deliverance... right.
Ummmmm - yeah, you keep proving me right by posting things like this.

I fail to see how giving those living in so-called poverty more money will actually do anything to address the problems we blame on poverty.
You make some very valid points here, but I would
counter this by pointing out that when people are on the bottom of the heap, they don't see the system working for them and following the rules is pointless - when you have no stake or ownership is the system you don't bother and the hopelessness of the situation you find yourself in sinks any self esteem and desire to move on - I agree that raising beneficary amounts won't go far enough - you have to upgrade these peoples communities as well.

The CPAG make some good points, but what about using contraception?
Very valid comment - only 50% of schools in NZ have a safe sex education policy, let's put the blame where it needs to go - our education policy.

I have heard a few rough comments about Maori out here in the provinces, but I have never heard anyone say "Maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaoris" like some sort of foghorn. Who actually says it like that? Have you been out of your insular bubble in Auckland?
Tune into Talkback on ZB - and yes I have enjoyed many trips to the South Island.

I doubt that bomber has ever been to the South Island. Bomber probably believes that New Zealand is only north of the Bombay hills.
Sigh - so much ignorance, I've been everywhere man, I've been everywhere. You are completly wrong about this.

But post of the day has to go to this guy - When cops can't find the time to investigate crimes you expect social workers to do something other than say "yes but get a job" and leave it at that? People on the benefit have no sense of rights and responsibilities, they say "yeah yeah but give me money" and their on their way, buying weed and what not. If beneficiaries had a sense of 'obligation' they wouldn't turn up to compulsory job interviews and out-right tell the interviewer that they have no intention of taking the job, or if they find a job turn up to it and expect to be able to drink on their lunch break and not do any work all day. WINZ needs the power to tell people "yeah but you've been on the dole 6 weeks, so um, have fun in the gutter", maybe some REAL hardship would learn em'.
Fuck Paul - I realise that people post on blogs to play devils advocate - but do you actually believe what you wrote here as it is the most ignorant thing I think I've ever read.

 
At 30/4/08 10:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How many jobs for the 'poor' have you created bomber. Ever tried to start a business in South Auckland and employ people there.

'Fuck' mmm trouble expressing yourself I see. It works for Gordon Ramsey but he is an achiever, successful and talented, he also has some humour and charm with it,

Best leave the English language and communication help to someone else.

Got any comfortable, feel good, committee meetings today, you keep cosy and safe now won’t you.

 
At 30/4/08 11:54 am, Blogger Paul said...

Ignorant? Lol I actually had someone specific in mind when I wrote that and I did NOT exaggerate.

Or theres the single mothers who are in the system so long they learn exactly how to manipulate it: I personally know people who have done all sorts of courses on the WINZ dollar that could get them a job, dress makers cabinetry etc, and yet they still have their kids classed as having aspergers and are therefore 'unable to look after themselves', these kids have PROVED in the past they are quite capable of looking after themselves but she gets cash in hand (around $70) to pay whomever to look after them once in awhile so she can take a break.

Winz ain't all poor families who's breadwinner has been made redundant. And those in that situation are less likely to know how to play the system for every last penny, in this case that they actually need.

 
At 30/4/08 12:25 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...and yet they still have their kids classed as having aspergers and are therefore 'unable to look after themselves'...

Paul.
For a child to be "classed" as aspergers, a fairly rigorous process would have been carried out.

Paediatricians, who are the people who will make the diagnosis, not a GP, do not classify a child as aspergers unless the child fits certain criteria.

Children do not pretend to be aspergers, nor can their parents make them fake it.

They are either aspergers or they ain't.

The $70 is not cash in hand, it is placed in the respite carers bank account.

Your post is just an ignorant comment about something you know nothing of, directed at a specific person.
Dumped you did she?

 
At 30/4/08 12:33 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll stop going on about the South Island now since you replied. I can see you get the point. I hope in the future you won't draw any silly parallels due to relative geographic orientation i.e., being south of somewhere.

 
At 30/4/08 2:55 pm, Blogger Nepenthe said...

Hey Paul

Speak gently, kindly, to the poor;
Let no harsh tone be heard;
They have enough they must endure,
Without an unkind word!

David Bates

 
At 30/4/08 6:24 pm, Blogger Bomber said...

...
How many jobs for the 'poor' have you created bomber. Ever tried to start a business in South Auckland and employ people there.

'Fuck' mmm trouble expressing yourself I see. It works for Gordon Ramsey but he is an achiever, successful and talented, he also has some humour and charm with it,

Best leave the English language and communication help to someone else.

Got any comfortable, feel good, committee meetings today, you keep cosy and safe now won’t you.

I'm sorry - WHAT? No really - what? What has anything you have written above got to do with anything I wrote? Did you even read my post?

Paul said...
Ignorant? Lol I actually had someone specific in mind when I wrote that and I did NOT exaggerate.

Or theres the single mothers who are in the system so long they learn exactly how to manipulate it: I personally know people who have done all sorts of courses on the WINZ dollar that could get them a job, dress makers cabinetry etc, and yet they still have their kids classed as having aspergers and are therefore 'unable to look after themselves', these kids have PROVED in the past they are quite capable of looking after themselves but she gets cash in hand (around $70) to pay whomever to look after them once in awhile so she can take a break.

Winz ain't all poor families who's breadwinner has been made redundant. And those in that situation are less likely to know how to play the system for every last penny, in this case that they actually need.

Paul - are you seriously telling me that because you are aware of a couple of people who are cheating social welfare justifies the entire dismantling of the social welfare state??????? Mate sure there are some people who scam social welfare, I have no doubt of that at all - but you would condemn the majority who are desperate and needing? Dude I respect your self-sufficiancy and strength to walk on your own two feet without any assistance from the State, but to crucify so many just for some sense of personal superiority? My jaw is left hanging open.

Anon 12.25 - you make to the bone points and welcome to Nepenth, that is some wisdom that you have written. Thank you for posting.

 
At 1/5/08 2:27 am, Blogger Paul said...

"are you seriously telling me that because you are aware of a couple of people who are cheating social welfare justifies the entire dismantling of the social welfare state? ... but to crucify so many just for some sense of personal superiority?"

Those who would genuinely look after themselves and their own if they could are and should be fully entitled to help from the state when they need it, it's the dishonest leeches that bug me. The system also bugs me with it's lack of punishment for those who continually disregard their obligations.

Anon 12.25 yes you made some good points and I made over the top ones. I was fishing for another example, one not worthy of crucification, and someone I had no right to disrespect. To the person in question I sincerely apologise for acting like a twat.

Until recently I didn't even mind the ones playing the system, my harder line views came about when example numero uno decided to play me as well. Someone who had been a long time friend. I guess I also feel quite bitter that I let myself be played.

 

Post a Comment

<< Home