Saturday, May 19, 2012

ACT's biggest backer a bigot

It sickens me reading the views of one Louis Crimp, who I have never heard of before today, although his face looks vaguely familiar. He is a bigot and apparently ACT's biggest backer.

Unfortunately, because I stood for ACT twice, I still get associated with  stuff that goes on in and around the party. And so I am compelled to publicly disassociate myself from this guy.

According to The Herald Mr Crimp said in an interview:

"All the white New Zealanders I've spoken to don't like the Maoris, the way they are full of crime and welfare."

Asked if his political views could be labelled racist, he said: "I don't give a stuff what I'm called. You have to look at the facts and figures. This is the problem with New Zealanders. Most of them dislike the Maoris intensely - I won't say hate - but they don't like to say so."
But here's the kicker:

Act's president, Chris Simmons, said he disagreed with Mr Crimp on some areas but respected his right to have a view....Mr Simmons said the party would take Mr Crimp's money again.

ACT has utterly lost its way. It was the champion of individual rights and arch critic of collectivism, and should be the party speaking out most vehemently against racism - not tolerating and tacitly condoning it through allowing a bigot to buy influence. I am appalled.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Teenage birthrate hits new low

The March quarter teenage birthrate has dropped to 25.3 per 1,000 15-19 year-olds.

This is the lowest rate since  1972 when the number was 69 per 1,000.

This is good news because most babies born to teenage parents end up on welfare.

Currently there are 3,051 18-19 year olds on the DPB (some might not be parents but caregivers to someone sick).

In March 2009 when the teenage birth rate was 32.2, there were 3,570 on DPB, so the drop in the birthrate is reflected in numbers dependent.

It may be that the messages about the DPB no longer being a long-term option are getting through. But the number of babies being born is dropping across the spectrum from 64,159 (year ended March 2009) to 60,860 March 2012.

The depressed economy? More potential dads leaving the country? (The abortion rate is also trending down so fewer women are getting pregnant in the first place.) Motherhood less fashionable? The moral climate?

I think that people are beginning to appreciate that the road ahead might not be so easy and are starting to adjust their behaviour accordingly. Whatever their circumstances are.

What do you think is changing?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tom Scott gets it

There are times when a cartoon really nails it.

PPL- time to take a step back

A column for the NZCPD, May 13:

Paid Parental Leave - time to take a step back The NZ Herald recently ran a poll asking whether National was right to use its veto to override Labour MP Sue Moroney's private member's bill to extend Paid Parental Leave (PPL) from 14 weeks to 6 months. After 16,000 votes were submitted, sixty percent of respondents had answered yes.

Frustratingly, this doesn't tell us whether people were against the extension in the context of the current economic climate, against an extension full-stop, or against the entire scheme. I fall in the last category.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Another redundant objection to extended free contraception

S Beast commented on an earlier post,

"I also find the idea of a government agency prying into the sex life of 16 year olds more than a little creepy."

You will no doubt also find the idea of the education and health departments doing the same "creepy"? 12 and 13 year-olds given the immunisation against cervical cancer are asked if there was any chance they could be pregnant. School counsellors get intimately involved in situations surrounding the sex lives of adolescents. CYF, another "government agency" would also be closely involved with the sex lives of young people, and unfortunately, even children.

More generally, because I have seen other objections about case managers being involved in the 'new' policy,WINZ staff already deal with special grants for:

They also have to deal with difficult areas such as rape and incest when enquiring  after the father of a dependent child, the naming of whom is a requirement for receipt of the DPB. They use their discretion over whether or not to impose a penalty for not complying if the aforementioned scenarios are involved.

I imagine then they are quite capable of exercising discretion over offering a referral to a family planning clinic or GP for the purposes of receiving free long-acting contraception.

Monday, May 14, 2012

"NZ has a problem"

Friday's Right On  column in The Truth:

New Zealand has a problem

Working-age welfare accounts for around 13% of government’s total expenditure – that’s up from 2% 40 years ago. Many people – by no means all – end up on a benefit due to the choices they make, especially around partnering and parenting.

By the end of 2010, 23% of babies born that year had a caregiver on welfare. The pattern is fairly well established, so a lack of jobs is only part of the problem.

New Zealand has the second highest rate of sole parent families in the OECD at 30%. Most people don’t want to be sole parents, and most children want mum and dad in their lives.
These are statements of fact, not finger-pointing, blame or vote-buying.

By financially replacing fathers, government policy inadvertently caused substantial child poverty. The left wants this poverty reduced with higher benefits but this approach is only more of what created the problem in the first place. At least a third of mothers on the DPB started on welfare as teenagers. Without qualifications or work-skills, a benefit income can match or even surpass any working wage they might expect.

Welfare reforms being passed by Parliament have two goals. The first is preventing these young people from coming into and remaining in the system for many years, through more intensive and practical management from outside organisations, and restricting how benefit money can be spent. The second is passing the financial responsibility for their children back to parents through greater work expectations. For example, a single parent must be available for part-time work when their youngest child starts school.

The reforms are hardly radical. But they reflect a change in the way politicians and voters view welfare. They want a safety net, not a trap that damages families and children. The current set-up is not representative of a society that cares.

 Bomber's and and other Truth editorials here

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Nasty and offensive journalism

There's been some hysterical responses to National's plan to extend the type of free contraception available to beneficiaries. Some of them serious, some laughable. But the following is offensive:

"The really noxious component of the whole proposal is its extension to the teenage daughters of beneficiaries who are over the age of consent.

It would be comforting to believe that this plan was not meant to be a slur on women on the DPB. Yet the inference is unavoidable.

As is the implication that being a trollop is hereditary. There's a slut gene that gets transmitted from solo mothers to their daughters. If your mother was a slut, you'll probably be one, too. Maybe not, but let's not take any chances. These second-generation sluts can't help themselves. Only long-term invasive contraception can counter the effects of the gene."
Who is Paul Little? Someone who makes stuff up for a living?

It was Colin Craig who raised the idea of promiscuity, who implied that NZ women are sluts. Little has developed this further into the idea that women on the DPB are sluts because they are the ones being offered the  extended free contraception.

It wasn't Paula Bennett, who was herself a teenage parent on the DPB. I stopped short of being one due to a miscarriage. I was very glad of the contraceptive pill but it wasn't foolproof. And over time I probably had more partners than was wise. Plenty of willing men around. And go ahead Paul Little. Call me a slut. It doesn't bother me.

But don't go calling anyone on the DPB a slut simply by reason of being a beneficiary.

The reason that the teenage daughters of mothers on the DPB are being offered extra free contraception is because girls raised in single parent homes have a significantly greater likelihood of becoming teenage mothers. If they are already dependent on a mother who is reliant on a benefit they will almost certainly follow in her footsteps. The science shows that these girls will stay on a benefit a long time and their children, along with those who are added to a benefit, will experience the poorest educational and health outcomes. It is an EXCELLENT idea to do everything possible to delay parenthood in these circumstances.

I have written about this method before. Opposition (in any form) describe an idea in nasty and offensive terms and then attribute those nasty and offensive terms to the originator of the idea. Very shallow and inadequate thinking.

(And for the Herald to drop a photo of Paula Bennett with her daughter next to this crap is also nasty and offensive. )