Island Life by David Slack

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Island Life: There is no alternative

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  • Grant McDougall,

    But if you buy the latest issue of teh Listless, you can get out of teh financial crappy. "Boost your financial IQ" it sez. Teh simplz!

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 634 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    And kudos to those interviewers who remember the $35m windfall for needy private schools when Ministers "regret" not being able to afford lesser priorities like said special education funding.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16996 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Stevens,

    Yes to Sascha - I really don't see why private schools should get any govt. funding. Aren't they all about the free market and letting the strong survive?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 229 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg,

    I always used to think that governments or parties to the left were more susceptible of putting beliefs or policies ahead of actually responding to real financial situations. Being dogmatic, I suppose.

    It seems that being dogmatic is no longer only for the left. If it ever was.

    Stockholm • Since Jul 2009 • 798 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    In the end, there were only a lonely few of us arguing against them...

    Oh, Wagner-worthy theatre , David. Meanwhile, you could always cut a cheque to the IRD for any of that filthy blood money that landed in your pocket. How about it?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12073 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    My personal view on private schools is a simple one. I would simply abolish al state funding of them and aim to abolish them completely. In a society which supposedly values secularism in education and egalitarianism and merit in society, allowing those who can afford it to try and skew the playing from s early as possible makes no sense at all, and apart from the fig-leaf of "choice" I can't see any reason for private schools at all.

    What is worse, the $35 million being wasted on private schools could cover the abolished TIA for women on the DPB, reverse the utter Philistinism of Anne Tolley's cuts to community education, restore the funding to the therapists mentioned above and there would still be plenty of change.

    The money is there. But we have a government at the moment not for all New Zealanders, but of, and for, a particulary vengeful and spiteful minded "middle New Zealand" - a mindset the governments own Crosby-Textor propaganda has done much to create.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Steady there, Tom. Our state primary school includes a private Montessori block and it does nothing but enrich the school. I can't for the life of me think why we ought to get rid of it.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7412 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    Tom, do you include integrated schools in your vision ?

    Craig, one of the advantages of having taxation is that it enables the state to act as an aggregator. Surely this is more efficient that your suggestion of individual-level funding of much-needed social programmes ? Also, your current position seems at odds with your rhetoric during the election campaign about the respective finance spokespeople not being honest about how they are going to pay for the tax cuts. Since the answer is "cut spending on the needy to pay for spending on the rich", are you happy with National's programme ?

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 461 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    This increasingly feels a lot like the last national government. I'd like to say that it's such bad politics and will cost them the next election, but that didn't necessarily happen last time, so no indication that it will happen this time around.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6227 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Craig, one of the advantages of having taxation is that it enables the state to act as an aggregator. Surely this is more efficient that your suggestion of individual-level funding of much-needed social programmes ?

    Mikaere: My suggestion is that anyone who thinks that tax cuts are the work of Satan, yet is quite happy to pocket them, is a hypocrite. I'm also quite happy calling theatre on David trying to paint himself as lone speaker of truth to power -- he might not like the election result, but pretending that there wasn't a lot of debate around the wisdom, let alone the affordability of tax cuts is rewriting history to an absurd degree.

    Also, your current position seems at odds with your rhetoric during the election campaign about the respective finance spokespeople not being honest about how they are going to pay for the tax cuts.

    Really? I was also rather critical of parties making large spending promises that I couldn't for the life of me see being affordable and that whoever won the reality check was going to be hard to swallow. Can't see anything to change my mind.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12073 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    In a society which supposedly values secularism in education and egalitarianism and merit in society, allowing those who can afford it to try and skew the playing from s early as possible makes no sense at all, and apart from the fig-leaf of "choice" I can't see any reason for private schools at all.

    Meddling bloody UN and their pesky human rights.

    Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 26:

    Article 26

    1. Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

    2. Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

    3. Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3012 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I was also rather critical of parties making large spending promises that I couldn't for the life of me see being affordable

    It is affordable to start funding private schools, however, apparently. How do you feel about that one?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7412 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    It is affordable to start funding private schools, however, apparently. How do you feel about that one?

    Every student moved from the public system to the private system saves the government/taxpayer money. Money that can be spent on other things.

    :-)

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3012 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Yes, the same bogus principle according to which the public health system will work better if more people take up private health insurance. We know about that one - working a treat in the US for instance.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7412 posts Report Reply

  • David Slack,

    thinks that tax cuts are the work of Satan

    Didn't say it.

    is quite happy to pocket them

    You don't know that. As it happens, I pay more tax than I theoretically could.

    paint himself as lone speaker of truth to power

    Not what I said.

    pretending that there wasn't a lot of debate around the wisdom, let alone the affordability of tax cuts

    Didn't do it, didn't claim it.

    rewriting history to an absurd degree.

    Theatrical statement proceeding from fallacious premise.

    Devonport • Since Nov 2006 • 599 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Every student moved from the public system to the private system saves the government/taxpayer money. Money that can be spent on other things.

    Well, only if the government's increase of private school funding of $35 million moves about $50 million worth of public school students over to private schools (they'll still receive some public funding in their private education).

    Otherwise it will have cost the government overall.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6227 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    Every student moved from the public system to the private system saves the government/taxpayer money. Money that can be spent on other things.

    And that's the bit which makes me laugh the most. This is in effect a tax on the middle class. Low earners can't afford private, the highest bracket already pays and in order to "keep up" the angst driven middle earners go private as it becomes bettter subsidised.

    Someone convince me that any government would use the alleged savings elsewhere in education.

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 732 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Low earners can't afford private, the highest bracket already pays and in order to "keep up" the angst driven middle earners go private as it becomes bettter subsidised.

    Low earners gets screwed anyway, don't worry: when middle class kids move the private schools, it hurts a school's ability to fundraise, and of course schools need that in order to do their core business.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7412 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    Oh and while were at it lets all enjoy the drive in the morning to the school of our choice. You gotta love Auckland and the school run.

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 732 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Every student moved from the public system to the private system saves the government/taxpayer money. Money that can be spent on other things.
    :-)

    To right, like subsidies for yacht's. I walked around some local marinas yesterday. Its a bloody disgrace. The yacht stock is looking shabby. Third world! If we don't divert money from those looser public schools we will become a laughing stock. :)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2805 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    Yes, the same bogus principle according to which the public health system will work better if more people take up private health insurance. We know about that one - working a treat in the US for instance.

    And Treasury of all organisations pooh-poohed tax subsidies for private healthcare.

    More on US health politics:
    Solution needed for American healthcare reform

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4431 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    My suggestion is that anyone who thinks that tax cuts are the work of Satan, yet is quite happy to pocket them, is a hypocrite.

    If you got a tax cut, of course. My taxes went up (well, ACC levy, technically, but it looks the same from here.)

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    My suggestion is that anyone who thinks that tax cuts are the work of Satan, yet is quite happy to pocket them, is a hypocrite.

    In which case, surely the converse applies: anyone who thinks taxation is slavery and gummint is evil should fuck off to Afghanistan or Somalia to live in total freedom (until they are murdered for their shoes by the nearest warlord).

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1668 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    Oh and while were at it lets all enjoy the drive in the morning to the school of our choice. You gotta love Auckland and the school run.

    Disgustingly, Hamilton's rush hour is between 3.00pm and 4.00pm.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1878 posts Report Reply

  • Dave Patrick,

    There's also the marvellous irony of politicians banging on continuously about the need to upskill the workforce, and retain our best and brightest, and the Budget cutting all funding to gifted education advisory groups.

    It's still a legislated requirement for primary schools to identify and provide for their gifted kids, but they now no longer have anywhere to turn for ideas on exactly how to do this.... and given that the average school teacher will have spent about two lectures learning about identification and extension of gifted children, I don't expect the situation to improve.

    Rangiora, Te Wai Pounamu • Since Nov 2006 • 240 posts Report Reply

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