Some half-wit Herald columnist called Damien Grant opines on the madness of spending money on the social welfare system – in a very well thought out argument he’s particularly exercised by the idea of training beneficiaries for gainful employment:
Why? Why is it that despite hundreds of billions of dollars being spent on beneficiaries, free education, free health care and subsidised housing, we are going backwards?
The answer was provided in stark relief in recent weeks in the sudden appearance of Tania Wysocki, not very reluctantly, on the national stage.
Despite receiving the equivalent of a $43,000 salary to sit at home with her two children, she wants the state to give her even more money so she can learn how to be a vet nurse.
Wysocki is threatening to get her kit off in protest at not being given access to enough free child care.
The idea of working for a living seems not to exist for her as a possibility.
I don’t know what Damien Grant thinks a vet nurse does, but the one we go to has to stick a thermometer up my cat’s ass and check the reading without getting the flesh stripped from her arms. That seems like working.
But why ARE we going backwards? Let’s have a look at the MED 2011 Economic Development Indicators, which compares us with other OECD countries. Let’s see . . . New Zealand managements skills: Low. Formal innovation: Low. Equity Market Developments: Low and deteriorating. (Our business leaders aren’t developing companies for each other to invest in). International Trade: Low and deteriorating. Net Foreign Asset Position: Low and deteriorating.
Our labour utilisation is really really high. New Zealanders work really hard! But the companies they work for are very badly run and heavily indebted, with minimal investment in growing productivity and unable to compete in international markets. That’s the real problem, not some solo mum who wants to train herself up to be a more productive worker but can’t because of MSD’s pointless, byzantine restrictions on childcare eligibility.