The Dim-Post

November 2, 2009

Pay out more rope

Filed under: Politics — danylmc @ 7:15 am

Stuff reports:

The Government is poised to implement a key election pledge requiring parents on the domestic purposes benefit to find work or training once their youngest child turns six.

Naturally Labour is horrified and is taking the bait. Greedy National Party! You already have a 25-30 point lead in the polls!

Last time I checked the average amount of time a solo mum spent on the DPB was around three years, so before there’s a huge debate about the ethics of this policy, ‘beneficiary bashing’, what solo mums should do in the holidays and so on I’d be interested to hear how many people it would actually affect and how much money it’s supposed to save.

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20 Comments »

  1. Naturally Labour is horrified and is taking the bait. Greedy National Party! You already have a 25-30 point lead in the polls!

    I can see that being a story in itself.

    But the pill looks to be sweetened with the Government pushing out the amount long-term beneficiaries can earn from part-time work before they lose their benefit.

    That could be a great move – again devil’s in the detail.

    Comment by StephenR — November 2, 2009 @ 7:52 am

  2. “…once their youngest child turns six”

    Note the obvious loophole for the serial DPB offenders.

    Comment by Pat — November 2, 2009 @ 7:58 am

  3. serial DPB offenders.

    Yeah, “serial offenders”. Because having children while poor and unmarried is like robbery or rape. At the very least, it’s is an offense against right-wing pricks like yourself who believe only good people should be having children.

    Comment by George Darroch — November 2, 2009 @ 8:05 am

  4. serial dpb offenders, love it.

    weapon of choice, perpetual taxation sink.

    archilles heel, unable to say no.

    Comment by expat — November 2, 2009 @ 8:18 am

  5. @George – Take two nurofen and have a lie down.

    Surely the point of the proposed policy is to prevent the small minority from seeing DPB as a life choice. Don’t pretend there are not girls out there who leave school without qualifications, whose job prospects are next to nil, and having kids is a way to provide an income. And the fathers are never to be seen again, as far as ever getting child support is concerned.

    If you don’t have a cap on the number of children, as much as that is a political minefield, then you provide an obvious loophole that will be exploited by that same small minority.

    Anyway, capping the number of children a family can have should form the cornerstone of any political party if they are serious about climate change. Just change a family’s tax bracket according to their carbon footprint, and no sterilisation will be required!

    Comment by Pat — November 2, 2009 @ 8:22 am

  6. If the point is to protect the poor bloody crown from having to pay out to these nefarious mathers Pat, I think there are far more profitable areas to look at around tax and the avoidance thereof.

    Also and too, I’ll start listening to moral hazard arguments from righties re beneficiaries, when said righties start pushing for ‘too big to fail is too big to exist’ legislation, and get it passed. Till then, nah.

    Comment by Pascal's Bookie — November 2, 2009 @ 8:32 am

  7. They can tell me how many times I should biologically reproduce BUT I’LL BE DAMNED IF THEY GET MY LIGHTBULBS

    Comment by garethw — November 2, 2009 @ 8:36 am

  8. Don’t pretend there are not girls out there who leave school without qualifications, whose job prospects are next to nil, and having kids is a way to provide an income. And the fathers are never to be seen again, as far as ever getting child support is concerned.

    There are very few. The reactionary right love to talk about DPB mothers, because they embody poverty, dependence on the state, and young women making the “wrong” choices about sex and their bodies.

    Comment by George Darroch — November 2, 2009 @ 8:36 am

  9. “There are very few”

    Agreed, but I wonder how many “very few” there are. If it, say, 100 then there is no point even having the change in legislation. But if there is 5000 then that is a different story. Without the numbers you can’t know if there is really a problem or not. (BTW – if it is only 100, then my daughters netball team is reponsible for 2%!!!)

    Comment by Pat — November 2, 2009 @ 8:46 am

  10. before there’s a huge debate about the ethics of this policy, ‘beneficiary bashing’, what solo mums should do in the holidays and so on I’d be interested to hear how many people it would actually effect and how much money it’s supposed to save.

    Hahhahahahaha… I think you’re about to be disappointed again.

    Media coverage of politics has turned it into a reality dating show – selectively editing clips to show us how cool they are, or how crazy, with instant replays of fights and bitchiness. The media performs collective fellatio on the winners on our behalf, and mocks the losers. At the end of the season we get to phone in our votes based on this selective coverage, for the low price of only around a quarter of our income.

    What the actual policies are is meaningless, unless they provide fuel for a catfight or an emotional response.

    Comment by gazzaj — November 2, 2009 @ 9:26 am

  11. “weapon of choice, perpetual taxation sink.

    archilles heel, unable to say no.”

    Wow, expat. That’s a whole new level of classy. People on the DPB are sex-addicted whores? Up there with the Chris Carter “ass candy” quip.

    Why do you want this guy commenting on your blog again, Danyl?

    Comment by Eddie Clark — November 2, 2009 @ 9:49 am

  12. I think you meant to say ‘how many people it would *affect*’ with an A rather than an E. As a verb, affect means to impact on (‘the rain affected the quality of play’) while ‘effect’ is used less commonly as a verb and means to bring about (‘the changes will be effected this week’). Although I suppose you might have been asking how many people will be brought into existance by the policy.

    …fixing the results of the New Zealand education system one blog at a time…

    Comment by Helen — November 2, 2009 @ 9:58 am

  13. Any “moral hazards” around the DPB are less a question of monetary cost, but rather of what sort of children will we have arising from long term dependence on the DPB.

    We currently have about 107,000 on the DPB, 30.4% for less than a year, 36.1% 1-4 years, 23.4% 4-10%, and 10.2% over ten years.
    So, if there’s moral hazard to kids being on benefits its probably coming from that 30% on for over 4 years.. that could be 50,000 kids.

    I should think a relatively high percentage of those kids will be beneficiaries themselves later on, and too many will fall afoul of the law.

    JC

    Comment by JC — November 2, 2009 @ 10:05 am

  14. Helen

    Although I suppose you might have been asking how many people will be brought into existance by the policy.

    …fixing the results of the New Zealand education system one blog at a time…

    I think you mean existence, because there’s no such word as “existance”. The irony in your correction and subsequent mistake is so delicious I’d like to spread it on toast.

    …fixing the results of the New Zealand education system one blog comment at a time…

    Comment by chris c — November 2, 2009 @ 11:14 am

  15. Careful JC. You dont want to bring facts into a discussion like this.
    (really?, 107,000 on the DBP? Thats a lot)

    Comment by Captain Crab — November 2, 2009 @ 11:16 am

  16. I don’t think fiscal motivations are what is behind this policy. It won’t save a lot of money. It is the (reasonable in my opinion) belief that those who can work, should work, rather than choose to be on a benefit.

    Once a child is at school, there is capacity to take up part-time work, and the policy is simply that they make themselves available. If they can’t get a suitable job, they won’t lose the DPB.

    I’m not picking on him, but Phil U is a classic example of what the policy is designed for. Phil is a very intelligent guy, who I have no doubt could find part-time employment. He chooses not to. Taxpayers have the right to say, well sure we don’t want you forced to work 40 hours a week, but how about even 15 hours a week?

    Comment by David Farrar — November 2, 2009 @ 11:42 am

  17. “I’m not picking on him”

    On what planet?

    Comment by Pascal's Bookie — November 2, 2009 @ 12:16 pm

  18. eddieclark, dont twist a play on the topic into a bene bashing cry-a-thon. go and seek solace in a herbal tea and soothing hour of morning report on radio pravda. or go back to the standard where you can cauterize any dissent.

    Comment by expat — November 2, 2009 @ 6:23 pm

  19. Uhm – expat. Staggering as it may seem to you, there is more than one person in New Zealand named “Eddie”. I’ve almost never commented on the Standard, and I certainly don’t post there. I.e. despite the staggering coincidence, I’m not Eddie of the Standard vintage.

    Nice try with the meaningless blather of ridiculous personal insults, though :).

    Comment by Eddie Clark — November 2, 2009 @ 9:41 pm

  20. I apologise for the standard part, that was pretty low.

    The rest of it stands though, it was a light hearted reply that played on the original piss taking tone of the original post. You dont have to turn it into an ad hominem attack, which you did, and then get arsey when you get it back.

    Comment by expat — November 2, 2009 @ 10:12 pm


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