Child poverty and a lack of affordable housing are the consequence of decades of failed government policies by both labour and National
Labour and National have both mismanaged the economy over the decades to such a degree that the consequences are now beginning to show
What are the consequences
Child poverty is increasing
homelessness is increasing
depression is increasing
Suicide is increasing
Illness is increasing
All these are signs of a stressed out citizenry and why ?
Because food prices are increasing
Tax is increasing
wages remain low
House prices are increasing
Rental properties are increasing
Fuel is increasing
You won’t find any stats in this opinion piece, but do we really need them ?
We just have to look around us to notice how many people are hurting and how many are finding it hard to make ends meet.
Weeks out from the election and the two big parties are speaking their rhetoric
words it seems can speak louder than actions because the actions of these two big parties are what we see as reality today – the reality is that the consequences of decades of failed policy by both big parties is taking its toll on the people and the children of this nation are paying the price
not every ones kids mind - just those on the bottom end of the trickle down theory - this catagory is growing and thats another warning sign in itself
What we are seeing in our nation – once the land of plenty – are the consequence of failed desk top policies of BOTH PARTIES over decades – nothing arises in isolation it took decades to get to where we are now.
Today both big parties want your vote again promising all sorts of ‘fixes’ adressing the symptoms and blind to the causes - the cause ? Decades of mismanagement
The big election issue seems to be child poverty ….well that took decades – and by the way stop using our kids as an election issue - we don't need to have food in schools - we need to have living wages !! and a welfare system that is pinned to the 21st century economy not the 1990's so that parents can buy the food to make the lunches
The conversation is framed by the reality of hungry children in the mythical land of plenty - Aotearoa.
kids are hungry and in poverty because successive govt policies have NOT WORKED and the kids are paying the price Why ?
There are many reaons for this - failed policy is at the core of it - every thing ele are sysmptoms - but at the core of these policies you will find some die hard beliefs ...here is one of them
Motherhood - In this sytem motherhood has NO valule - it has been erroded over time - and our kids loose ouit - mother hood is not valued – not unless she is a working mother putting her kids into care so she can be a viable and valued contributor to the work force.
This is now the standard protocol of government agency’s to get mothers back into paid employment as soon as possible after birth. Mothers don’t get the choice unless they are well off or have a partner to pick up the slack.
Women fought not just to get the equal right to vote but to have her issues on the agenda - things that concerned her like - um lets see - fammily - education - health - things that she was intimately connected with - these things have always remained at the bottom of the agenda - even today - industry trumps them all
Govt policy discriminates against parenting - mothers/women in particular - instead its focus is on business and creating viable units of working capital on the accounting books these viable units are - wage earners - tax payers - people -
In this accounting system there is little to zero value in motherhood.
The most important and valuable role on the planet is that of nurturing the young - and yet women are expected to drop the baby off to some outsourced wet nurse so they can quickly re join the work force and become once again a valuable member of society aka a viable unit of working capital on the accounting books of the government
No where is the callous disrespect for motherhood experienced than in The Ministry of Social Development - WINZ
The devaluation of the role of mothering unless it is paid work is the norm in government policy. - pay parity has still not been reached in the 4 decades that ive heard it being discussed
Mothers/parents are often double taxed because of being a sole parent in receipt of a benefit she has to work long hours for little gain – her children are farmed out and they miss out. The poverty trap is built into a punitive system and has never been fixed despite decades of think tanks
the irony here is that the welfare system was installed so that the poverty that arose with the great depression would never happen again - and yet today the acutal welfare system is putting people in poverty !!!
Message to politicians and political commentators
We don’t need lunches in schools – we don’t need more ministries for children – what we need is the role of mothering to be vlaued - living wages and a welfare system based on 21st realities not stuck in the last century - Ones that don’t force people into poverty or prostitution.
We don’t need more ministries to suck up the public purse – we just need more vigilance to use the policies that exist such as the UN rights of the child.
What party has adopted the UN rights of the child ? answer – NONE
If national did then its MSD policies and practices would be illegal - namely cutting the benefits of those parents who for one reason or another can't jump high enough through the various hoops put in front of them that end up having their benefits cut.
Beneficiaries and the working poor are the parents whose kids are being politicized here.
What we need is to apply the UN rights of the child that NZ ratified in the early 90’s – if this were in place NO govt department could cut a benefit if there were children involved – they couldn’t even threaten it – but no one is implementing this policy in the MSD not even the commissioner for children
So when politicians shout their rhetoric about child poverty remind them that nothing arises from a vacuum and that what we are seeing are the CONSEQUENCES OF FAILED POLICY over decades
New Zealand is a land of plenty – we grow our own – milk, cheese, meat, butter – and yet all these things made locally are sold to citizens at prices so high they have become unaffordable - kiwis in England can get them cheaper and that’s what ‘free trade’ does – another failed policy that affects the health of the people
Why is there still GST on food ?
Answer – government policy
With low wages and a welfare system still based on a 20th century economy benefits, which I may add, have never been fully reinstated by labour since national cut them in the mid 90’s and whose accommodation benefit is still based on 1990 rental prices – affordable housing is now no longer within the reach of most people on low wages or WINZ benefits and this is where the child poverty comes into affect and over crowded housing situations occur
Every thing is inter-related – and all are CONSQUENCES OF FAILED POLICY over decades from both parties
decades of failed policy has resulted in the reality we now see before us – those insulated by their wealth won’t understand this – those who are living the reality of over crowded homes or faced with sleeping in their car aka US styles can be seen as huge warning signs of not just failed policy decade after decade but of something else – a collapsing society
here are some of my definitions of a collapsing society - you may add your own
A collapsing society is one where the value of the people is superseded by the value of industry or capatial
A collapsing society is one where the wealth is sucked out of the community and into off shore bank accounts
A collapsing society is one where government continues to plunder the wealth of the nation built up over generations and sells out to vested interests
A collapsing society is one that has become over decades not a democracy but an Oligarchy
A collapsing society does not arise over night it takes decades
Warning signs of a collapsing society
Increasing Child poverty
Increasing housing crisis – increased house prices, leading to increased rental prices = homelessness
Increasing taxation especially on goods and services – GST- putting healthy food out of reach of thousands
Increasing fuel – demand outstripping supply
over burdened health system
underfunded education systems
increasing student debt
increasing household debt
Consequences of collapsing society
Increased rate of preventable diseases especially in children
increased medication for depression
increasing environmental degradation
And all the while the system that created this with their desk top policies are asking for your vote – trying to get you to believe that they can make it all right again with yet more desk top policies - again they don't realise what they are seeing are symptoms - they never get to the root of the problem - they just keep chucking money at the symptoms - does anyone else see this ?
Einstein said that this was the measure of insanity thinking that the same minds that created this can change it - they cannot but they can make you feel as if they can – because memories it seems are short - its taken decades to see such child poverty and homelessness in the land of plenty
so my message to politicians and to everyone else – stop and think
Child poverty is a consequence of government policy that hasn’t worked at a core fundamental level decade after decade - so is unaffordable housing - I am not talking here of home ownership – but of rental accommodation to the millions who will never be able to save enough to buy an inflated house of their own - those who are burdened with educational debt – the working poor and those who find themselves in need of a benefit - because now through government policies many can no longer to afford to rent a liveable home because of rising rents
We are the people who are warning you that decades of failed government policy now needs to be scrutinized – let the actions of both parties stand as their election platforms – and cover your ears to their electioneering rhetoric – look around you – the warning signs are every where
The recent tragedy at Ashburton is a case in point – here was an opportunity to look closer at this department and its punitive and dracoion policies - this should have brought the suffering of decades of failed and punitive poliies to the forefront - It could have opened a conversation in which the failure of decades of politicking with peoples lives now become the warning signs of a collapsing society and the kids are paying the price