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Monday, February 14, 2011

Mainstream media make bennie bashing easy

YAWN - it's just so predictable isn't it? Here's another lazy, stupid journalist from the Dominion Post - Clio Francis (I wish the Dom would post the emails of their idiot Journalists so I can have a go at Clio directly) doing all the propaganda work for Paula Bennett's latest round of bennie bashing, here's how the lazy mainstream media play it - find the most extreme example and hold it up to justify vast swathes of benneficaries having their means of living cut...

Benefits axed for hundreds
Taxpayer-funded globe trotter Peter Freedom is just one of 658 long-term beneficiaries whose welfare payments have been axed in a government crackdown.

...shock horror, scream blah blah blah, and all that fuss about the 1% worst case example blocks out and smokescreens the reality for the 99% who desperatly need that support, and buried deep into the story we see that reality...

Mr Smith said that since the introduction of the Future Focus reforms last September 658 people had had their benefits axed. A thousand people on the unemployment benefit had also had their benefits halved.

...the lazy, stupid mainstream media did the exact same thing in January of this year...

Harris to get benefit axed after 26 years
Former gang leader Darryl Harris will lose the sickness benefit he has claimed for 26 years.

Social Development Ministry chief executive Peter Hughes said Mr Harris, who lives in Christchurch, had been told that his benefit would stop from January 10 because "he no longer meets standard eligibility requirements".

Mr Hughes was replying to an Official Information Act request.

The decision comes as the Government takes a harder line on benefit claims, including work-testing for sickness benefits from this May.

Mr Harris, who has three months to appeal against the decision, and his wife, Marcia Robins, made headlines a year ago when it was revealed they had been claiming unemployment and sickness benefits continually since 1984.

They had received $30,000 in special-needs grants since 2000, including payments for new tyres for their 2007 Chrysler saloon and to fence a swimming pool at one of their Christchurch properties.

Efforts to cancel Mr Harris's sickness benefit failed when he obtained a medical opinion from one of Work and Income's designated doctors that he was addicted to cannabis.

The agency had appealed against a medical opinion that Mr Harris was suffering "stress and anxiety" at being work-tested.

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett said yesterday that the Government believed those who could work should, "and if that is considered hardline, so be it".

...YAWN, of course this example isn't the fucking 'hardline', a white supremacist gang member claiming welfare is probably the greatest gift to Paula Bennett since Glasson's leopard print mega sale.

This Government have a policy of blaming welfare while ignoring poverty and inequality, it is predictable that the mainstream media would act as an unquestioning propaganda arm of that policy. Harris and Peter Freedom are an anomaly.Why the hell doesn't Clio look at the money stolen by bloody social welfare staff?

Benefit cheats get away with $16m
Benefit fraud cost taxpayers nearly $16 million last year with 10 social welfare staff sacked for ripping off the system. Figures released to the Herald under the Official Information Act show fraud detected by the Ministry of Social Development has almost doubled from $8.1 million five years ago.

And what about the almost half a billion the Ministry of Social Welfare blows every year due to their own incompetence?

Ministry's mistakes cost taxpayers
Beneficiaries owe the Ministry of Social Development nearly $1 billion and about half of it is because of overpayments, official figures show. The total includes recoverable assistance of about $410 million, fraud about $65 million and an outstanding overpayments balance of $454 million which the ministry is trying to get back.

Oh no, we don't look at the $16million stolen by staff and the almost half a billion blown by the Ministry's own incompetence, oh no, the chump change stolen by the dirty filthy bludgers is the story and it justifies slashing all benefits.

Using an example as extreme as Harris and Peter Freedom to justify policy cruelty aimed at society's most vulnerable is an easy way to avoid criticism, it is sad our mainstream media play along rather than challenge.


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