Thursday, May 26, 2016

No money for housing, more money for spies

New Zealand currently has a housing crisis, with people being forced to live in cars and garages in Auckland due to a bubble and insufficient state housing. So is the government doing anything about it in today's budget? There's the $41 million of emergency housing spending over four years, and an inflation adjustment to income related rents subsidies (because rents are skyrocketing while incomes are stagnating). In other words, business as usual, rather than a credible response to the crisis.

Meanwhile, they're shovelling money at the spies, with an extra $178 million over four years. GCSB gets an extra ~$15 million a year and SIS between $18 and $35 million extra a year to hire more staff to deal with the "threat" of "foreign fighters" and invade our privacy even further. But really, what's more of a threat to New Zealand? Homelessness? Or imaginary "terrorists".

This speaks volumes about National's priorities. No money for the real needs of real kiwis, but buckets of it for spies.