Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The same old shit

Earlier in the year the government appointed a Welfare Working Group to review the welfare system. Today, it reported back. Unfortunately, its just the same old shit:

Strict time limits on benefits, work-for-the-dole and forcing solo mothers to work based on the age of their oldest child are among a raft of radical suggestions for reforming the welfare system.
The first is certainly a radical suggestion, and one guaranteed to further entrench poverty and inequality in this country. As for the second two, they're equally radical, but have also been tried before. And the results of that experiment were disastrous: work for dole made people less likely to find work, while work-testing solo parents meant they did not have enough time to spend on their children. But the last thing you should expect from NeoLiberals is paying attention to the empirical evidence. Instead, its the same old dogma, trotted out again and again, because apparently if you keep doing it harder, the results will be different. But then, these people don't actually care about the results; or rather, the only result they think is important is cutting costs, which will allow lower taxes on the rich.

If Key has any sense, he'll consign this report to the same rubbish bin as Don Brash's senile ravings about catching Australia. Unfortunately, its more likely that they'll kick some beneficaries in an effort to shore up their core vote before the election. And the human consequences? Well, its not like National gives a fuck about them, is it? After all, its not as if rich white people will be the victims.