Saturday, March 11, 2006

NZ women sent to Sydney for abortions

The Waitemata Health board is paying for women with pregnancies advanced to 18 - 21 weeks to go to Sydney for abortions. NZ nurses and sometimes doctors are refusing to perform these abortions but the Health board is legally bound to provide them.

The question that springs into my mind is, why do these women leave it so long?
There will be cases of fetal abnormalities only detectable at a later stage and the decision to abort must be heartbreaking. But I find it hard to believe that others didn't know until 4 or 5 months, although when you read the occasional story about a woman getting right to the birth unaware of the pregnancy maybe it's more feasible than I think.

Then there is the bigger question of whether tax-payers, which is the case here, should have to fund abortions at all....

Why Blacks disproportionately affected by AIDS

This theory from Ronald Bailey of Reason;

..... two researchers found that the increase of AIDS among American blacks closely tracked the rise in incarceration rates of black men over the past two decades. The researchers point out that about one out of 12 black men are in jail or prison, compared with one in 100 white men. And if current trends continue, a third of all black males born today will spend some time in prison.

Prisoners become infected with HIV through sex and intravenous drug use. Data on the prevalence of sexual activity in prison vary, but one conservative estimate found that 20 percent of male prisoners experience some type of sexual assault and 7 percent are raped.

....Until recently, prison wardens and the state and federal legislators have largely looked away, not wanting to deal with the crude and brutal facts of prisoner sex. Their inaction has incubated a public health crisis. Of course, the most effective way to prevent HIV infections among prisoners would be for correctional officer and administrators to put a stop to sexual intercourse and oral sex in their institutions. But since inmates tend to be young, violent, testosterone-fueled men, that is much easier said than done.

....Shockingly, many corrections officials oppose testing inmates for HIV infection when they are initially locked up because their budget-strapped institutions would then be obligated to pay for their treatment. One result is the tragic rise in infection rates among African-Americans.

....Government scientists did not create the HIV virus, but a conspiracy of inaction and silence among government officials is worsening the AIDS epidemic among black Americans.

Anti-Americanism - take that

An old American gentleman on his way to a walking holiday in the French Alps, arrived in Paris by plane.
At French customs he fumbled for his passport.
"You have been to France before, monsieur?" the customs officer asked sarcastically.
The old gent admitted that he had been to France before.
"Then, you should know enough to have your passport ready for inspection," snapped the irate official.
The American said, "The last time I came to France I did not have to show my passport."
"Impossible old man!" the official replied. "You Americans always have to show your passports on arrival in France!"
The old American gave the Frenchman a long hard look. Then he calmly stated: "I assure you, young man, that when I came ashore at Omaha Beach in Normandy on D-Day in 1944, there were no Frenchmen anywhere on that beach."

Ripping off the system

Social service agencies are questioning why families who earn more than $70,000 a year are still living in state housing while more than 11,000 people are languishing on the waiting list.

This situation is endemic to having state housing. Either we accept it as a feature of the system or we scrap state housing altogether.

CYF is dysfunctional

I am really worried about the bind we find ourselves in. CYF is dysfunctional. A Cabinet paper released on Thursday describes how and,in some part, why. Of particular note is, "Many problems were created by those drawing up policy not understanding what happened on the front line".

CYF is dysfunctional, and always will be, because it reflects the dysfunctionality of the people it deals with. What the policy-makers and public don't understand is there are tragedies waiting to happen that no amount of intervention will stop. Then the social worker is blamed, almost to the point of having caused the problem. Of course social workers sometimes ignore process and rules. They use their own judgement and they have individual views about what action will deliver the best outcome. They don't have crystal balls.

But because they have the power to remove a child they are distrusted and consequently mislead by 'clients'. CYF case workers are not popular. Other organisations often get better results because they are trusted. The government knows this and want to capitalise on it. There is a move afoot to farm out cases to private organisations.

But what do you know? The last thing some of those private organisations want is state money. If they become agents of the state they end up with CYF-like problems. Other organisations see the development and want to get on that gravy train quick smart. Despite their good intentions they will become corrupted by the bottomless tax-payer pocket.

One way forward (an interim progression) is for government to pay a private agency, whose sole job is to get people off welfare. They only get paid on results. Similar schemes have worked in the US.

Let the private charities that can do the intimate social work successfully, stay free of government money and all the attendent bureaucratic obligations. Let CYF remain the strong arm of the law which gets the kids out when the private sector calls them in.

And, of course, stop encouraging the wrong people to breed. If society can't stomach getting rid of the DPB altogether make it strictly temporary.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Plain English

Bill English's newsletter is worth a read this week. He talks about the "extravagantly stupid Building Act", and the seemingly crazy business of the working overstayers evicted today.
"The staff concerned had been refused work permits and are now overstayers. But why were they refused work permits? It's almost impossible to get staff for hospitality jobs in Queenstown, and all sorts of non-New Zealanders are getting work permits to fill the gap. Takaro is isolated and its requirements specialised, and they just can't get any suitable staff.
Takaro is setting out to establish itself as part of the "spa industry", where high net wealth individuals pay large amounts of money to spend time on health and wellness. We need this tourism business and more like it. So did these immigrants break all the rules, or is it a case of bureaucratic bumbling? I want some answers."

During the election campaign I stood in for the Mana candidate at a Porirua College meeting. Bill English stood in for Chris Finlayson. I was impressed with his easy manner with the students. Trumped Winnie Laban. He's smart and one of National's best.

Thanks for that, Minister

"Over the next two weeks more than half a million households will be encouraged to check whether they are entitled to tax relief under the Working for Families package.

An estimated 85,000 middle-income New Zealand families will become eligible for Family Assistance tax credits for the first time as part of Working for Families from 1 April.

Working for Families information brochures will be sent to 535,000 households outlining the new increased income limits. "

"We want to make sure families who are eligible know about the changes, which is why we're getting the information to their door," Minister for Social Development and Employment David Benson-Pope said.

Let's see. 450,000 households will get material for their recycling bins. The other 85,000 will find out how to give the government a dollar and get back 80 cents. And we will all be able to savour the privilege of keeping Benson Pope in his ministerial lifestyle. Doesn't it give you a warm glow?

Could it happen here?

This is a ticket given to a British motorist who gave a speed camera the one finger salute. He was, by the way, under the speed limit. This story about police priorities sounds glaringly familiar. So be warned!

Super Nannies

The UK government intends to send Super Nannies into the homes of the most anti-social families.

These social workers, with extra health or other specialised skills, will be with the family early in the morning and late at night, ensuring the children are fed, dressed, sent to school and layabout parents get jobs. At night they will make sure children are washed and put to bed and not roaming the streets.

Antisocial families are currently monitored by up to 10 different local authority agencies — allowing those determined not to change their ways to play different bodies off against each other.

Under the plans, such families will be put under the full-time supervision of a single case worker, who will only move on when there is evidence that households are responding.

This may be a good thing and I'll tell you why. The social worker is going to have the sole responsibility for getting routine, structure and just some semblance of normality into these homes. He or she is going to find out that the main barrier to achieving this is her employer, in another guise. In the case of the UK, the Dept of Work and Pensions. As long as the "layabout" parent keeps collecting their dole or lone parenting payment without sanctions changing any other behaviour patterns will be nigh on impossible. I speak from experience.

While many different authorities were involved, no single one had to take the responsibility for making a difference. So, as an alternative to the status quo I would support this. Finding anybody who wants to do the job is another matter.

On the button

The greatest threat to the future of our nation -- to our freedom -- is not foreign military aggression … but the growing dependence of the people on a paternalistic government. A nation is no stronger than its people and the best measure of their strength is how they accept responsibility. There will never be a great society unless the materialism of the welfare state is replaced by individual initiative and responsibility.

— Charles B. Shuman


I've been thinking. As we now have a Maori Party whose sole reason for existing is the paramouncy of being Maori, I am officially starting the Blonde Party based on the paramouncy of being Blonde. Brunettes and Redheads are welcome to join. I don't know what the point of that would be but being Blonde, I don't need one. If you feel Blonde, you are. Just wanting to be Blonde is silly and patronising enough to qualify you. I undertake to release a policy every time the Maori Party does. As they are trail-blazing the way for parties based on skin colour and I am trail-blazing the way for parties based on hair colour, I will follow their lead. If I can't come up with a Blonde policy I'll find a Blonde joke. You probably won't notice the difference.

For instance, the Maori Party say Maori should get their Kiwi super savings earlier than anyone else because Maori don't live as long. So the Blonde Party says that Blondes should also get their Kiwi super savings early because low IQ is linked to lower life expectancy. Makes perfect sense.

I am already planning our first campaign which is to lobby Statistics NZ to include a question about hair colour in the 2011 Census. The state needs to plan for the Blonde demographic.

Would you like to join?

Update: I am going to headhunt Sue Kedgley. I just heard her on the radio saying "it was incredulous" that the Wellington region had allocated only 6 pecent of its transport budget to public transport. She knows some big words and with a command of english like that she would project exactly the image we want.

State knows best

Parents and teachers are angry that the government has refused to appoint parents or teachers to the Correspondence School board.

According to the DomPost the Education Minister Steve Maharey announced a new-look board this week that did not include any staff memebers or parents.

The existing board had been appointed by the government two years ago as an interim measure.....parents and staff had hoped the new board would include representatives.

A senior staff member said education had suffered under the Government-appointed board. "There are still kids who haven't got work this year...."

Parent Angela McIntyre said it was disgraceful parents had not been given the opportunity to be on the board like face-to-face schools.

But Mr Maharey said parents and staff had been kept well-informed and a skills-based board was appropriate.

Defending this on National Radio yesterday he apprently said that the parents and teachers get copies of minutes from the meetings.

Let them eat cake.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

A bear, a lion and a chicken sit talking about who is the toughest.

The bear says, "When I roar the whole forest trembles!"

The lion says, "When I roar the whole jungle shakes with fear!"

The chicken says, "All I have to do is cough and the whole f**king world sh*ts itself!"


Only a few weeks ago drivers were barred from working on buses because they'd slept with their underage girlfriend many moons ago. Meanwhile we have a guy who killed his wife and kids by slitting their throats going into people's homes as a Census collector.

Area manager Judy Cartwright said Te Huia had been doing a great job and she was comfortable with him knocking on doors. "He's been suffering for what he did for 13 years. How long does he have to be crucified for?"

Asked if she intended to continue employing him, she replied: "Absolutely. I have no reason to take him off. There?s never been any discussion about that."

But last night Statistics New Zealand released a statement saying Te Huia had resigned that afternoon.

"It emerged today that the collector had failed to disclose information material to his employment," said Government statistician Brian Pink.

This Census operation has certainly already produced some very interesting revelations.

From welfare waffle to education waffle

880 (2006). Allan Peachey to the Minister of Education (22 February 2006): What does the Minister understand his Ministry to mean when it refers to teachers working together in “professional practice communities”?

Hon Steve Maharey (Minister of Education) replied: In a community of professional teaching practice, teachers:
· seek opportunities to model, observe, coach, critique and reflect, and use action research approaches;
· take a school based approach over time that fosters collaboration and collegial support;
· value ongoing guidance and support from within and outside the school.

This waffle is a perfect example of how our education system fails. What I want from the education system is that my children learn how to think (not to be confused with what to think) and how to communicate.

Advice for Sue Bradford et al.

I will be e-mailing the following article to Sue Bradford. It is easy to understand and draws on factual evidence.


Wednesday, March 08, 2006

After humiliation at the polls in November, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger now advocates raising the state minimum wage from its current $6.75 an hour to $7.75 by July 2007, says David Henderson of the Hoover Institution. While Democrats support the idea of helping poorer families, researchers claim artificial wage rates adversely affect lower income people.

Consider the findings of various economists:

* Only 20 percent of the workers potentially affected by an earlier one dollar increase in California's minimum wage were supporting a family on a single minimum-wage income. The other 80 percent were teenagers or adult children living with their parents, adults living alone or dual earners in a married couple.
* Increases in minimum wages actually redistribute income among poor families by giving wage increases to some and putting others out of work. They estimate the 1996 and 1997 federal minimum-wage increase amplified the proportion of poor families by one-half to one percentage point.
* People in their late 20s worked less and earned less the longer they were exposed to a high minimum wage, presumably because the minimum wage destroyed job opportunities early in their work life.


* A comprehensive survey of studies of the minimum-wage increase found that a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage reduces employment of young workers by one percent to two percent.
* If this estimate holds for California, Gov. Schwarzenegger's proposed 15 percent increase would destroy 1.5 to 3 percent of young Californians' jobs -- about 35,000 to 70,000 jobs.

Cart before the horse

This judge is talking sense in as much as he identifies the first three years of an at-risk child's life being the core of many future problems.

Retired family court judge, Graeme MacCormick says,"It is from disadvantaged children, those not given a good start in life, that most of our young and not so young criminal offenders come.

"We cannot afford more police, more court staff, more judges, more prisons, more accident and emergency and mental health workers, more wasted lives, than we already have."

But a national at-risk register? I don't trust the state to get anything right in respect of registers, follow-up and intervention. Go back a step further and ask, why do we encourage people who couldn't look after a kitten, let alone a child, to have babies? It seems senseless to continue to do this and then bang those babies onto an at-risk register as soon as they arrive, assuring ourselves that is enough.

Your home is not your castle

Census takers go on to people's properties. Over the space of a week or so nobody knows when they will turn up. In Kapiti three Census takers have been bitten by dogs. One a ridgeback-mastiff cross which bit a man on the arm, the second a labrador which bit a woman on both legs, and the third was unspecified but the collector received minor bites on her elbow.

Get this. The Census area manager says,"We have contacted the police and Kapiti dog ranger and requested that the offending dogs be destroyed."

The dog ranger says,"We will be checking to make sure dog owners adhere to common law, which states quite clearly that every home has to have dog free access."

Quite clearly nobody can have a dog for the purpose of security or deterrence. Anybody who cannot afford or doesn't want to fence from their gate to their front door can't have a dog - not even a miniature poodle. This edict is another abuse of property rights.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Why so long?

It is marvellous how quickly one can correspond with e-mail. I was thinking about a book I read, of correspondence between Peter Buck and Sir Apirana Ngata, when days and weeks would interrupt the conversation.

But only yesterday my main bitch with the Whangamata controversy was that, which ever way the final decision went, it should never have taken 11 years. Over such a long period the resentments and division build. The eventual ruling is then much harder to come to terms with and get over.

We whinge about lack of access to broadband and how it is holding us back. Heck. Speedier technology can't combat the stultifying and stifling processes we have put in place to prevent development.

This appeared in yesterday's DomPost in response to Michael Bassett's column about irresponsible people having too many children.

Future of Freedom Foundation

This has to be the best logo and their website address is also really succinct at

You can subscribe to their daily e-mail which always contains an interesting quote. This is today's;

According to a new poll, only one in four Americans can name two of the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment. But more than half of Americans can name at least two of the characters on The Simpsons. Hey, if they ran the Constitution on TV eight times a day, we'd know it.

— Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Kimmel Live

Expect shortages

Think for a moment about the implications of this snippet;

Midwife Shortage - Three leading obstetricians in Auckland say they are worried negative publicity about midwives will add to a serious and growing shortage in the profession.

So we can look forward to similar shortages of politicians, police, prostitutes, professional rugby players, gang members, catholic priests, newspaper editors, bloggers.....

Another tax hike

The Press leads today with the news that Christchurch rates are about to take a 9.9 percent hike.

Christchurch homeowners face the largest rates rise in at least 20 years, with more financial pain feared.

Last month, the council decided on about $1.5 million of cost-cutting measures, including the possible closure of some suburban swimming pools and libraries. It also endorsed increased fees, notably in the cost of parking in the central city.

Cr Helen Broughton said the rates rise was too high, but she could not say where further cuts should be made.

She could look here. In December the salary of the Chief Executive was raised to $351,000 and a bonus of 8 percent paid. What was the bonus for? Keeping the ratepayer happy?

The symbolism of steak

Victoria University senior psychology lecturer Marc Wilson, an omnivore, and PhD student Michael Allen, a vegetarian, say meat is symbolic.

"Why do people eat meat? Partly, it's a way of expressing dominance or masculinity . . . Really masculine men eat more meat," Dr Wilson said.

National Party supporters and men who saw the world in a hierarchical way tended to eat more meat than Labour Party supporters and women – who saw the world in a more interconnected, less structured way, the researchers found.

Perhaps there is also the small matter of the price of a piece of steak....

OECD gravitates towards "enemies of liberty"

I thought the OECD was going soft. This news from the Independent Institute confirms it.


For about half of its life, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) attempted to defend and promote economic liberty in the West. As Independent Institute Research Fellow Pierre Lemieux explains,however, in the past
two decades the OECD has drifted toward government intervention.

Beginning in the 1980s, the OECD began advocating "fair competition" and a "global playing field," rather than free trade. Since the 1990s, it has also pushed both "socially responsible" corporate governance, which puts the alleged claims of so-called community "stake holders" on par with the claims of stockholders, and "sustainable development," which asserts presumptuously that long-run development requires the government to prevent private developers from acting against their own rational self-interest.

Although the OECD still does some good work (Lemieux lauds its country surveys and research on comparative health-care systems), the recent selection of Angel Gurria of Mexico to head the OECD in June, rather than the market-oriented classical liberal candidate Alain Madelin of France, bodes poorly for the organization -- and for the future of economic liberty.

Writes Lemieux: "Alain Madelin believes that the OECD will be more and more carried into the world governance movement, which, he explains, is where the enemies of liberty have refocused their fight. He adds, pessimistically, 'It is the end of the OECD.'"

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Can seven violent deaths go unreported?

According to Human Rights Commissioner, Joy Liddicoat, quoting the National Collective of Women's Refuges, seven women have been killed in domestic violence incidents this year alone. In trying to verify this I checked the Sensible Sentencing website.

It has recorded 9 murders this year. But none of them were women. Seven were men in either their late twenties or early thirties. The other two were a three year-old boy and a 14 month-old baby girl.

What am I missing here? There is no mention of this fact at the Women's Refuge website

I've searched "woman killed in domestic incident nz 2006" to no avail and I've searched the Police press releases, also to no avail.

According to Stop Violence Against Women historically a woman is killed by a partner or ex every five weeks or around 11 women a year. So if seven have been lost already something is seriously awry (as though it isn't anyway.)

I can only conclude that these seven deaths slipped completely beneath the media's radar.

UPDATE: Now it's in the newspaper so it must be true.

Prison Population Projections

Prison population projections have just been released.
No surprises that further increase is expected. But why the predictable seasonal fluctuations?

You Will Comply

This is nauseating stuff from collectivist compulsionists. A UK real estate agent painted his shop the wrong colour and was forced to pay three thousand punds in fines and legal fees. Check the link to see just what a dreadful shade of yellow he chose.

But look what this woman had to say;

Councillor Irene Ratcliffe, from Derbyshire Dales District Council, said the issue was not really the colour.

"It isn't about the colour - it is about complying and I believe we have to enforce it as we have to live together as a community."

Drugs and heartache

Methadone programmes allow registered heroin addicts to collect a daily supply of methadone from their local pharmacy. The methadone is usaully taken at the pharmacy. But in the case of days when the pharmacy is not open "takaways" are given. A programme operates in New Zealand but there is a queue to get on it.

What the programme offers is a chance to get clean by taking a reducing dose legally. It allows the addict to disassociate him or herself from criminal activity. It allows people to hold down a job.

In Scotland a two-year-old boy recently died from swallowing methadone stored at home. His two siblings are now in care. All three should have been in care.

"Drug and methadone dependency have reached epidemic proportions, with our social services left to pick up the pieces of government policy that lacks the will to tackle the issue head-on."

Some 20,000 drug addicts - nearly a third of the Scottish total - are on a methadone treatment programme. Figures from the General Register Office for Scotland show there were 80 methadone-related deaths in 2004, compared with 225 for heroin. The figures for 2003 were 87 and 175 respectively.

These figures don't tell us a lot about whether the programme is succeeding because the methadone-related deaths may not relate to people on the programme. The methadone may have been illegally obtained or sold by somebody on the programme.

In NZ there appears to be three outcomes of the programme. People actually get clean; the methadone becomes a crutch but it is still a better crutch than heroin; others continue to be involved in criminal activities which eventually catch up with them.

The Howard Penal Reform league says;
International research clearly demonstrates the short and long-term benefits of placing those with opioid dependence on methadone programmes as soon as addiction is apparent and help sought. Rapid access to treatment is shown to be beneficial even when initial or interim treatment is not comprehensive and involves less than optimal doses.

The risks with methadone programmes are real. But on balance the risks associated with an addiction to illegal heroin are worse. We need more legality. We need to get more people more quickly onto these programmes - not fewer.

Monday, March 06, 2006

"State teachers go private for own"

One of the problems facing parents in my electorate is the vast size of the major state secondary school. It has a roll of 1800. Many parents have no choice but to send their children to this school even when it doesn't suit their child's needs. Fortunately we could afford to 'pay twice' to get one child into an independent school with a small roll. The people who work there have their own children enrolled - unlike many teachers in the UK state system, who have been sharing their contempt for state schools and intentions to avoid them if at all possible;

STATE school teachers have admitted they are planning to educate their children in independent schools rather than send them to the comprehensives allocated by their local councils.

Teachers contributing to an education website last week complained of being made to “lump it” with “bottom of the league” schools where drugs and bullying were rife.

Alan Smithers, professor of education at Buckingham University, said he was concerned by the entries on the TES website, which is mainly used by state school teachers.

“Teachers know the school system best,” said Smithers. “If they are thinking it is not good enough for their children, that is an indication that something must be seriously wrong.”

The role of a government

There can be no doubt what National Finance spokesman, John Key, thinks the role of government is. This is from a speech delivered to the West Harbour Rotary Club today;

"At a national level, if we can generate more income in the future, we have more ability, collectively, to do things - to improve our public services and to strengthen our national institutions.

Health and education services are usually the first things people think about as benefiting from a stronger economy. I agree, but I also look further than that. I'm always impressed, for example, with the Australian Institute of Sport, and by the constant stream of gold medal winners and world champions who come out of it. Australia can afford a facility like this because it is a much wealthier country than we are. The quality of a national institution like this is reflected back again in a strong sense of national pride.

In a similar vein, I made the point last year in a speech that part of the reason we should strive to have a prosperous economy is so we can fund and enjoy things like our Symphony Orchestra."

Crisis? What crisis?

What can this story possibly be about;

....found the extent of the crisis....lack of time as the major problem...."This is a major concern to us" ....the same tragic story kicks in....too male-dominated ....unfriendly to female....lack a family atmosphere....the decline was even greater....there are many are a number of issues which need to be addressed for the long-term good....expectations of an inclusive, socially interactive environment were quickly shattered....

So what is this crisis?

The Public Health System

Contrast these two stories.

Spending rises but surgery falls at city hospitals
Health spending has risen from about $6.6 billion a year when Labour took office to about $10 billion. But most of the extra spending has gone into rolling out the Primary Health Organisations.

Doctors warn no more care after hours
A South Island doctors' group representing 460 GPs is threatening to withdraw from providing after-hours care if workforce and funding problems are not fixed.

Is this as good as it gets?

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Rachealle Namana

I knew Namana was out. I'd looked her up on Garth McVicar's database some time ago. What happened to Lillybing changed my life because I reached the point when I no longer wanted to pay for people to live dissolute, destructive and deviant lifestyles and make the lives of children in their care utter misery. Somehow it made me complicit.

Let's not forget what happened (the italicised passages are the words of Pamela Stirling writing for the Listener in 2001).

One depositions witness said Lillybing had arrived at the kohanga reo that day with "shit running down her legs", bare feet "pinky purple" with cold and a snotty face. Other children teased Lilly bing because she smelt. The witness said she retched when she tried to change Lillybing's nappy.

Lillybing was not much more than a baby. A small 23 month-old constantly left in the care of her Aunty, Rachealle Namana, who had four children of her own. Namana resented being put upon. She was called on to breastfeed Lillybing when the biological mother was unable. Lillybing would be left with Namana, without nappies, which is why the toilet-training episode apparently occurred.

There was evidence that Namana hit Lillybing each time she fell from a little wooden platform in front of the adult-sized toilet during a toilet training session that started at around 8pm. It was after 11pm, said the thirteen year-old withness, crying through much of her evidence, that she found Lillybing alone on the toilet, clinging with her arms and legs 'to stop her falling in'.

But Namana was defrauding WINZ. "My sister left for Australia and I kept the benefit."

By Namana's own account she was getting an extra $400 a fortnight. Namana chainsmokes and there is money for alcohol. Namana claims only to go to the pub at lunchtime to put a $2 bet on the TAB, but at the Royal Oak her unborn child was known as "Jack"; short for Jack Daniels. Ask her about drinking during pregnancy and she says she only discovered she was pregnant at seven months. 'I was on the injection; it saves money on tampons.'

There was money for drugs and there was money for band equipment. The partner had a band called FUBAR, which stands for Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition. The first word Lillybing said most clearly was "f...".

On the day Lillybing died there was a birthday celebration for Namana and Hemopo's 8 year-old. Her present? A Sky cartoon channel subscription.

But Lillybing is the child who a health worker described in depositions as a 'woebegone little thing' and looking as though she 'never had enough cuddles'.

She fell over all the time. A bruise on her forehead was mistreated with a boiling cloth. Vaginal injuries and bleeding were ignored. At some stage on the day of her death Namana shook her violently causing a major cerebral injury. The Crown says she had also suffered some severe abdominal bruises at about the same time.

When Lillybing lay dead on the couch Namana had driven to her stepmother's house looking for a driver so she could "get on the piss".

Nothing has changed.

Hinewaoriki Rerenoa Merekara Karaitiana - Matiaha 7 Aug 1998 - 23rd July 2000


A commentor asked if any of my work could be viewed on the web so I have set up a gallery here.

Privatisation of welfare - not

Saw the following on the Adam Smith blog.

Was I hallucinating when I heard British Gas are to offer a lump sum rebate for the aged or disadvantaged? I called BG. Sure – At the last monstrous price increase they agreed with government to offer a means tested benefit. They promise to mail details but it may just have been a dream. BG seemed unclear if this benefit is to be subsidized by the Government or by their shareholders. Can you believe that utilities are offering competing means tested benefits? Does this signal progressive privatization of welfare?

This isn't "welfare privatisation". Utility companies are not there to provide welfare. Privatising welfare would be about welfare agencies providing welfare services operating on voluntarily donated money. Like World Vision.
You see, thanks to the state, welfare has wrongly become synonomous with just the provision of money. It is much more.