Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Who's Dreaming Now?

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  • Steve Barnes,

    My designated doctor visits would pretty much reduce me to sixteen hours a day in bed again for a couple of weeks just from sheer stress.

    I know what you mean, I need my 20 hours in bed just to cope with the drinking.
    ;-)

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4947 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I know what you mean, I need my 20 hours in bed just to cope with the drinking.

    Drinking! Drinking! Wait, I'm not going down that road, there's a shoebox in the middle of it.

    I'm going to quietly bookmark this page for future pick-me-up purposes.

    You totally deserve it. We really must have breakfast together again in future.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4379 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    You are both cherished

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16996 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    The really strange thing about all this is not that the National Party are doing this shit. They always come into power and do this shit, every time. It is exactly what National stalwarts expect from their party and for the most part the real National supporters actually want this kind of shit and believe it will somehow be "better for New Zealand".

    What is strange and, in that train wreck kind of way, fascinating, is that otherwise normal healthy sensible New Zealanders who had benefited tremendously from the absence of the National Party from policy decisions, chose to vote for this insanity.

    With just a little luck Emma's predictions will remain fiction, maybe. With a little luck New Zealanders will remember this year when it comes time to vote again. With a little luck the damage won't be so bad that a sensible government can't fix it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3472 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    With just a little luck Emma's predictions will remain fiction, maybe. With a little luck New Zealanders will remember this year when it comes time to vote again.

    Well, Bennett just said it was the conservative start.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6358 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Nothing conservative about it - and I wonder how the rump Nats who aren't close to Act feel about that?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16996 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    You totally deserve it. We really must have breakfast together again in future.

    I'd love to... but where are the juvenile jokes about us having breakfast together the first time around? Is everyone feeling okay today?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7412 posts Report Reply

  • Sam F,

    In between mining, Derty Sesh and Paula Bennett it's been a bit of a sobering day on the ole PA system...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1574 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    In between mining, Derty Sesh and Paula Bennett it's been a bit of a sobering day on the ole PA system...

    you forgot the cricket sigh

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3472 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    Or the attack on democracy in Canterbury.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 2171 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    I'd love to... but where are the juvenile jokes about us having breakfast together the first time around? Is everyone feeling okay today?

    I think we all can guess how Emma likes her eggs in the morning. </juvenile joke>
    :-)

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4947 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    In other sobering News...
    Report finds Heatley didn't understand expenses rules
    ignorantia juris non excusat

    Labour leader Phil Goff said it was appropriate Mr Heatley had resigned and did not think he should be returned quickly or it would look like "a very temporary sanction"........
    "I think the position went to his head very quickly - he had barely been a minister a year, and he had that sense of entitlement. There needs to be sanctions against any person at any time who has that sense of entitlement and misspends Crown money."

    This morning's Herald


    BREAKING NEWS Phil Heatley returning to cabinet, PM confirms...details soon

    Former Government minister Phil Heatley will return to Cabinet, Prime Minister John Key announced today

    This evening's Herald

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4947 posts Report Reply

  • Grace Dalley,

    Lately when reading Stuff I have to double-check that I haven't gone to The Onion by mistake.

    Tonight the news that ECan's elected councillors have been sacked, and democracy will be reinstated in 2013...if we're lucky, and good.

    Great piece, Emma, but I get this chilly feeling that satire is about to become redundant, because the truth is becoming totally hatstand.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2008 • 138 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Some good news in amongst the doom. Can-this-Brain-Eating-Zombie-get-more-fans-than-Roger-Douglas in Facebook is only a few fans away now.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8737 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Lately when reading Stuff I have to double-check that I haven't gone to The Onion by mistake.

    I don't have that problem. The Onion could never come up with something as cuttingly satirical of life in the 21st century as this news story from today's Stuff.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Some good news in amongst the doom. Can-this-Brain-Eating-Zombie-get-more-fans-than-Roger-Douglas in Facebook is only a few fans away now.

    I don't join that group because it's such an unsporting comparison. Can smallpox get more fans than Roger Douglas? Now that would be a race worth watching.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7412 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Some good news in amongst the doom. Can-this-Brain-Eating-Zombie-get-more-fans-than-Roger-Douglas in Facebook is only a few fans away now.

    I don't join that group because it's such an unsporting comparison...

    Because the latter is merely a subset of the former?

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Because the latter is merely a subset of the former?

    As long as he sticks to ACT supporters' brains, we're good.

    The thing about benefits is: it's a bit like the court system. We accept - or I think we *should* accept - that the standard of reasonable doubt falls on the side of letting some guilty people go free rather than convicting the innocent. Similarly, I'd rather have my tax dollars supporting some people bludging who are off the state than some people in living in dire poverty because we're trying so hard to make sure every single person deserves every cent they're getting.

    Because the cost to society of letting people fall through the cracks is *much* greater than the cost of supporting a few people who are lazy.

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

  • Sacha,

    Damn straight. Surely that's a photo caption, not a story. Wait, it's captioning more than one photo.. Crikey, I'd be suing if I was whatshername from 90210!

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16996 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    Um, yes. I constantly need to be put up to things. That's why Megan is such a bad influence on me.

    Hey! No fair maligning me like that when I'm not here to defend myself. And remind you that I do no influencing. I will concede to the slightly lesser charge of gently nudging in the direction of bad behaviour.

    I'd love to... but where are the juvenile jokes about us having breakfast together the first time around? Is everyone feeling okay today?

    Well, like I say, I wasn't here to lower the tone.

    I'd like to comment on the extremely good post (or posts, including Gio's), but you all have done it for me.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Here's how testing for fitness to work has turned out in the UK:

    (1, 2)

    "People with advanced Parkinson's Disease or Multiple Sclerosis, with severe mental illness, or awaiting open heart surgery have been registered as fit to work, according to the report by the Citizens Advice Bureau."

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2977 posts Report Reply

  • Sue,

    lucy you are amazing and awesome!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 498 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    Very nice work, Emma!

    And I'd like to ditto Lucy Stewart's comment...

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 993 posts Report Reply

  • Kate Hannah,

    been on both Sickness and Invalids' benefits, and I know what work-testing will do - the stress will make people sicker

    My husband and I survived on family handouts and landlordly goodwill for 16 weeks just after we got married while we fought the system to be on the married student allowance rather than the unemployment benefit (husband was unemployed). We were fully entitled - it was just they had to pay us more through the student allowance thing (and backpay us). Without that support and the help of the Waikato University student advocate, who gave me the WINZ manager's direct dial line (plus the confidence that we knew what we were entitled to) we would have been, well, stuffed.

    I believe we the people subsidised Paula Bennett's education, do you think it's time we asked for our money back

    This is my other major bugbear - I too, benefitted from the training incentive allowance - it allowed me to finish my BA when life threw me a curve ball. I've gone on and done honours, an MA, and am now embarking on a PhD - all of which I've paid for. That's what the TIA does - it empowers people to move forward in their lives.

    Grrr - Key and Bennett are providing the worst kind of conservative cliche - bootstraps, state houses, solo mums, I'm alright, mate so why aren't you? Their education was paid for by tax payers - that's why they're alright.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2010 • 107 posts Report Reply

  • jessica scott,

    I completely agree with Lucy's comment. I honestly don't care if my taxes support a minority of people who for whatever reason don't want to work.

    As an aside- In the last year I've become self-employed and have been a frequent user of both the IRD website and helplines. They are so much easier to use and more helpful than I remember them being from a few years ago. It seems that they've made a shift to thinking that the majority of people just want to do what's right in as quick and easy manner as possible and it's most efficient to generally leave them alone.

    I don't understand why WINZ couldn't make a similar shift. I spent about 1 or 2 months on the dole after I left university and was made to feel like a criminal. Every process was made as inefficient and stressful as possible, I was constantly being sent multiple copies of letters with contradictory messages, making it all seem very difficult as to what the 'right thing' to do was.

    Wellington • Since Mar 2010 • 20 posts Report Reply

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