Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Welfare: Back to the Future?

203 Responses

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  • Peter Martin,

    As the song goes:

    'There's nothing surer,
    The rich get richer and the poor get children. '

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 184 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Godwinning the show does not win you anything.

    That said, I'm absolutely for universal free contraception, sexual and fertility health services, but singling out one group in society is highly disturbing.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Tristan,

    agreed. If implemented the next thing we will see is incentives...get an IUD and will pay you 500 bucks. Then get stealised for 1000 bucks....

    A US advocate of such a programme was in the country not long ago and Dita De Boni fawned all over her in her column on parenting for the Herald. I would look for the link but.. I don't want to.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    de facto sterilizing the poor/beneficiaries may be well-intentioned but still creepy

    What Craig said. The potential long term results of a policy on free sterilisation (not quite mandated) for the un/under-employed is scary sh*t.

    As a relatively young person, it looks very much like children are joining houses as something that the rich do.

    ETA: wow comments went into hyperdrive on that bombshell.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 277 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Deborah: I'm quite inclined to accept your reading. It's just that I was expecting the hate to manifest as being told to keep your pants on.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2968 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    From the Herald article:

    That payment would be administered by a single Crown Agency - Employment and Support New Zealand - standing at "arms length" from the Government.

    So...the big plan is to eventually privatise social welfare ? Why else would a core government function be moved to an "arms length" entity ?

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 455 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    A US advocate of such a programme was in the country not long ago and Dita De Boni fawned all over her in her column on parenting for the Herald. I would look for the link but.. I don't want to.

    Here. Money quote:

    It was hard to see any kind of downside to this excellent work, although RNZ's excellent Katherine Ryan did her best in offering a countering view that down-and-outers should not be bribed to stop breeding.

    Needless to say, it wasn't a convincing counter argument.

    Stockholm • Since Jul 2009 • 797 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    So worried about those on the autistic spectrum and other disabled people already struggling to survive week by week and already prone to anxiety. This report and the subsequent blaming and cuts will just add to that. They need longterm holistic and intensive support to find and keep any jobs that may be out there. I see the report recommends encouraging more 'natural supports' for this group - that means any family and friends they have. As if this is not happening now. And those single parents looking after older disabled children are in for a tough time too.

    It is all so cruel to the most vulnerable in our society.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 2096 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    "Long term reversible" - that's vasectomies, right? Among other things? My then-beneficiary partner's vasectomy was paid for by the state in 1997...

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Sue Bradford:

    Aucklanders – the fight back against the worst recommendations in the Rebstock report starts now. Join us – Auckland Against Poverty – in a picket, 2pm today outside Work & Income, Sel Peacock Dr, Henderson.

    I'm off to join her in a bit.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    The Welfare Working Group recommends that ready access to free long-acting reversible contraception

    What, the injection? IUD? Both those options are still mildly controversial, aren’t they? Also, what about solo fathers?

    What worries me about this report is that the bullet points seem… not-completely-unreasonable… at face value. Eg, it’s a little difficult to put a case against penalising addicts who refuse counselling. Ultimately it seems the working group has done job quite adequately: suggest semi-palatable “solutions” to a “problem” that never should have been framed as a problem in the first place. DPB recipients remain sufficiently demonised for the near future.

    Under the western motorwa… • Since Nov 2006 • 523 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    So...the big plan is to eventually privatise social welfare? Why else would a core government function be moved to an "arms length" entity?

    Probably. But having something at arm's length also gives you more political space - you can distance yourself from the operations of the entity.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to George Darroch,

    IIRC unemployment alone is 70,000 right now.

    Unemployment right now is well north of 100k. Just getting all the people who have lost their jobs due to the recession back into the work force would be our 100k reduction.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3909 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    I see the report recommends encouraging more 'natural supports' for this group - that means any family and friends they have.

    Much the same recommendation as the 2025 taskforce report, that advocated ‘greater self-reliance and greater use of family, community and market mechanisms for support’. Or, in standard English: "fuck off already and leave us alone".

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    So worried about those on the autistic spectrum and other disabled people already struggling to survive week by week and already prone to anxiety.

    Hell yes. The image of a poor case worker trying to actually deal rationally with an autistic person is rather amusing, but I'm sure the reality would be very nasty for both of them.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8591 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg, in reply to Emma Hart,

    "Long term reversible" - that's vasectomies, right?

    I'm not sure if that's sarcasm, but for the record; vasectomies are to be considered permanent. It may be possible to reverse one, but there's no guarantees for that.

    Stockholm • Since Jul 2009 • 797 posts Report Reply

  • Ian MacKay, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    I imagine that Paula Bennett would still be there after the Election from her List placing. Can't get rid of her that easily!

    Bleheim • Since Nov 2006 • 498 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Heather Gaye,

    Both those options are still mildly controversial, aren't they?

    Depo is definitely controversial, because it can have long-term irreversible effects on reproductive health and also fucks with the recipient. I watched a lovely, caring teenager turn into a narcissistic, manipulative bitch in a matter of weeks when she went onto depo. It was very sad. I believe NZ is one of only a few countries where depo is even legal.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3909 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Reid, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I see the report recommends encouraging more 'natural supports' for this group - that means any family and friends they have.

    Much the same recommendation as the 2025 taskforce report, that advocated ‘greater self-reliance and greater use of family, community and market mechanisms for support’. Or, in standard English: "fuck off already and leave us alone".

    AKA Big Society in the UK, isn't it? Which is ironic, as it seems to be the contribution of society to the individual/families getting smaller.

    South Africa • Since Nov 2006 • 79 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Ian MacKay,

    No, but it doesn't take many seats swinging back to Labour for National to be looking distinctly shaky in ability to form a government.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3909 posts Report Reply

  • Grant McDougall,

    Bagsy not have a nosey at Kiwiblog or Whaleoil to see their responses to the report.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 612 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    it doesn't take many seats swinging back to Labour for National to be looking distinctly shaky in ability to form a government.

    Not really, it's still the overall vote percentages that count in the system - winning marginal seats doesn't mean getting more people in Parliament under most scenarios.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Robert Urquhart,

    I'm still reading, but I notice a trend to try and move people to .. anther massive shake just hit Chch .. "move out of the welfare system and undertake tertiary study through the student support system" .. back later....

    Christchurch • Since Mar 2009 • 142 posts Report Reply

  • Sarah Wedde,

    "a publicity campaign aimed at reducing public tolerance of fraud and abuse"

    Oopsies. Your bigotry is showing through.

    But as long as taxpayer money is being spent on publicity campaigns instead of supporting those in need, it's all good.

    Lower Hutt • Since Nov 2006 • 66 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Sarah Wedde,

    But as long as taxpayer money is being spent on publicity campaigns instead of supporting those in need, it's all good.

    No expense needed - we can just reuse the one we had in 1998. It's not as if it made a lick of sense then either.

    (I uploaded this myself - what service, eh?)

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

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