Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: Misadventure and Muppetry

96 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 Newer→ Last

  • Robbie Siataga,

    The second stage of the global capitalist crisis

    By Nick Beams
    12 April 2010

    We can see more clearly the meaning of the fiscal crisis of the state. All government spending on social services, health, education etc. is, in the final analysis, a deduction from the surplus value available to capital. The cuts in social spending now being implemented by capitalist governments around the world, together with attacks on the social position of the working class, are the means by which the state will appropriate the surplus value needed to fund the bailout of the banks and financial institutions.

    This process is creating the objective foundations for a new period of revolutionary struggles. The confrontation cannot be averted—there is not some new technology, or fresh source of cheap labour, that can pump the vast quantities of surplus value into the capitalist economy needed to match the wealth already handed to the banks. The capitalist state must claw back massive amounts of surplus value previously appropriated for social spending. In short, we have the emerging objective conditions for social revolution. The capitalist state cannot continue to rule in the old way and the working class cannot live under the new regime.

    http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/apr2010/bnrt-a12.shtml

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    Hey Andin! Give me a recent Buddhist saying! Or even one of a modest vintage. I tire of these old Buddhist / Sufi / Daoist sayings.

    Paula Bennett is not a sacred cow.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1230 posts Report Reply

  • uroskin,

    what happens when the dole runs out?

    I should have been a bit more nuanced. In Belgium where I lived, your dole was a (from memory) 60% of your wage for about 12 months. Then it dropped to the minimum dole (paid to people who have never worked and the long-term unemployed) which lasts until you find a job. The really humiliating thing about the Belgian dole system was that you had to register (get a "stamp") daily at a set hour the day (the next day's appointment time is given to you at today's stamp time) ostensibly to prevent black economy work. The registry was always in a very public place which adds to the humiliation of lining up.

    Waiheke Island • Since Feb 2007 • 178 posts Report Reply

  • dyan campbell,

    Hey Andin! Give me a recent Buddhist saying! Or even one of a modest vintage. I tire of these old Buddhist / Sufi / Daoist sayings.

    Spikehegan, I can help you here - my sister runs one of humanitarian Jane Goodall's schools, and some of the students - none of whom have ever written a song before - have penned something of a modest hit. My sister Shirley nearly keels over with pride very time she hears it.

    The phrases about peace and love may sound hackneyed to any cynic over 15, but the kids who wrote the words don't know that yet

    The whole song is just one big fat Buddhist saying, and it can't get any more contemporary than out of the mouths of babes.

    Bring Back Peace

    Music Seeds International

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 595 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I've no idea why NZTA would want to play this down, other than some fear that Mr Steven 'holiday highway or hell' Joyce will cancel future cycling projects.

    Which is odd given that he's opening it, but this government is stranger than most.

    The minister behaved himself very well in the event. And Nikki Kaye even had a ride on someone's flash bike.

    Hard News report and pics here.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18969 posts Report Reply

  • Mark Easterbrook,

    Just diverting back to Party Central a moment...

    Memo to Mike Lee, who I heard on b this morning, and anyone else involved in RWC 2011: Please avoid saying that you'll be

    down at Queen's Wharf in 2011 partying like it's 1999.

    1999 + Rugby World Cup + NZ + = terrible analogy

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 244 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Though horribly accurate given their choice of music

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    Not saying that the Canadian EI model is one we should move to, but its not the horrible awful capitalist nightmare of kicking people out in the streets that some people seem to be suggesting. You pay into EI while you work, and if/when you lose your job, you get paid out at a percentage of your wage, for a period related to the length of your employment. This percentage is a lot higher than the dole that we have here.

    The minimum period you have to work before your eligible depends on the province you work in (i.e. the ones heavily reliant on seasonal labour have a lower minimum period). Most people get a job before it runs out, but obviously not everyone does. They then lose the percentage-of-old-income EI payments, and instead go on a subsistence dole like we have here. The advantage is that it means you have something to tide you over short-term unemployment that's close to your old income. The disadvantge, as others have noted, is that the bureaucracy is an added level of complication.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 270 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey,

    I've no idea why NZTA would want to play this down, other than some fear that Mr Steven 'holiday highway or hell' Joyce will cancel future cycling projects.

    Which is odd given that he's opening it, but this government is stranger than most.

    The minister behaved himself very well in the event. And Nikki Kaye even had a ride on someone's flash bike.

    Yes, the minister did behave himself, and I note, did commit to the next stage of extending the link to Wellesley Street, so I retract the Highway or hell moniker and dub him Mr Steven "Cycleways or hell" Joyce.

    I said to Nikki Kaye that I thought she was in the wrong party... she said no, she's very definitely a blue-green National. I'll still contend that she's in the wrong party, and hope she forgives me for that.

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    With employment insurance, what happens with it if you retire/die etc? Does it only come back to you if you get made unemployed, or can you or your estate retrieve it in other ways?

    Sounds like it would make a good voluntary scheme, which the government might support in the same way as kiwisaver because they'd then save on unemployment benefits.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6205 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    Kyle - I don't know. My info comes from reading the Canadian press when I lived there and my Canadian boyfriend.

    (Meanwhile, really exciting start to the playoffs!)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 270 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    (Meanwhile, really exciting start to the playoffs!)

    Just stop right there and zip it.

    Though my team had a bad season, and didn't make it, I'm transferring my support to the penguins and looking forward to seeing Giovanni's Sens go down.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6205 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    I assume you've yet to see it and are hiding from the results? If so, will indeed zip it. No comment on that game 1, though I'll be supporting the Sens. For some reason I loathe Crosby.

    Looking forward to soccer scores when my Bs play Buffalo (even though I lived in TO, the Leafs are too hopeless for words so I latched onto another NE team). I think there'll be a lot of 1-0s and a lot of OT. Hopefully they can pull it off, but expect them to go down in 6, unfortunately.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 270 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I assume you've yet to see it and are hiding from the results?

    I only finished listening to the game myself. I really would not expect to have the result of a freaking NHL playoffs game spoiled in a Hard News thread! Hadyn's blog, I'd understand...

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    I protest! There are no spoilers in any of my posts for any of the four games played tonight!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 270 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I was expressing my surprise at the topic being raised at all! I agree that nothing has been spoiled.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    I was expressing my surprise at the topic being raised at all! I agree that nothing has been spoiled.

    Canadian EI was raised and, oddly enough, PAS-ers such as you and Kyle are the only NZ-based hockey fans I've come across. I takes my chances to talk hockey!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 270 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    This is, um, timely:

    Canada's budget watchdog says employment insurance premiums are going up, and by a lot.

    The parliamentary budget office estimates that EI premiums paid by workers and employers will need to rise by the maximum allowable limit of 15 cents per $100 of insurable earnings to return the fund to near balance in five years.

    That would hike annual contributions per worker by $535 — with about $223 more being paid by the employee and $312 by the employer.

    The maximum EI contribution paid by employees now is just over $730 per year.

    The combination of the increased premiums, more workers and higher wages means that Ottawa's EI revenues will grow from $16.2-billion last year to $27.1-billion by 2014.

    So, that'll be almost $1000 a year out of my paycheque, then. Ouch.

    Source

    p.s., go Canucks.

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    The maximum EI contribution paid by employees now is just over $730 per year.

    So, that'll be almost $1000 a year out of my paycheque, then.

    ?

    Also, for a bit of perspective, I pay around $1700-1800 p/a for a life insurance policy that pays out not only if I've taken on alternative employment as a daisy-pusher, but also if I'm incapacitated.

    If I lost my job today, in NZ the alternatives to employment insurance are another job, or nothing at all until I beomce elegible for the dole in around (I think) six months time.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    Why would you have to wait 6 months? Immigration reasons? It's not the routine stand-down. Also, you might be eligible for ACC depending on the cause of your incapacitation?

    EI is largely for those who have been made redundant, or whose fixed-term contract has ended, as opposed to those who are incapacitated (usually covered by other provisions depending on cause and age of applicant).

    Also, your insurance presumably isn't limited to a short-term and very partial reimbursement for lost income, to which a moderate amount of social stigma is attached?

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    Why would you have to wait 6 months? Immigration reasons? It's not the routine stand-down.

    I was under the impression there was a more or less routine stand-down period, but I am happy to be corrected.

    My reason for posting the life insurance stuff was just to point out that people do pay reasonably large sums of money to insurance companies to cover their arses, for quite a wide range of circumstances. Within this context (that people do pay reasonably large sums of money for arse-covering), $1000 p/a for an employment insurance scheme that pays out a pretty generous percentage of your former wage in the event of redundancy doesn't seem toooo unreasonable to me, although obviously it's not ideal, either.

    My insurance doesn't cover me for redundancy, or anything short-term, or anything except permanent incapacitation or death. It's not an EI scheme by any stretch of the imagination. I don't have an EI scheme.

    Of course, it would better if we all paid the money as higher taxes into a central pot, so that in the event of anything untoward occurring, Nanny State can swoop to the rescue, right...? And I understand that in some countries (France, for example), that is actually the case. In France, the redundant worker gets (from the state) a payout that is quite a high percentage of his or her former wage, for quite a long time. I don't know what the relative tax burden is, though. A comparison of tax vs private contributions normalised for range of protection would be interesting to see.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I protest! There are no spoilers in any of my posts for any of the four games played tonight!

    Just laying down firm ground rules. I had to have stern words with Giovanni last season. I download the game video, which takes a couple of days by the time I get to watch it.

    PAS-ers such as you and Kyle are the only NZ-based hockey fans I've come across.

    NZ based hockey fans can be found here. Though they'll be watching the IIHF site tonight to see if NZ can beat China in the Div II world champs (already beaten Israel, so have avoided relegation).

    Since Nov 2006 • 6205 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I was under the impression there was a more or less routine stand-down period, but I am happy to be corrected.

    I think the stand down is a couple of weeks. It gets longer if you receive a redundancy payment.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6205 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I had to have stern words with Giovanni last season. I download the game video, which takes a couple of days by the time I get to watch it.

    Can we talk about the fact that the Penguins won last year yet?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Jake Pollock,

    Damn right they did. Go Pens.

    Raumati South • Since Nov 2006 • 489 posts Report Reply

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.