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LINDSAY MITCHELL: The Plague of Entitlement

The subject on Kerre Woodham's morning talk show today was the cost of living and how dire some people's circumstances are becoming. A texter wrote in:

"Kerre, As a solo mum of two year-old twins I was recently offered a role for $96,000. I chose not to take it because the cost of living means I'd actually only be getting about a hundred extra dollars a week to what I am getting on the benefit. Something is very wrong with that scenario. Rent - and childcare if I work full-time - is $80,000 gross. So getting offered a job at $96,000 … financially, this single mum is better staying on a benefit. And what does that tell you?"*

I am assuming the texter is saying that a well-paying job, but not paying enough to attract her off a benefit, is confirmation of the extremely elevated cost of living. The answer to her rhetorical question is implicit. We are expected to agree and sympathise.

I would answer her last question rather differently. What her text tells me is this:

1/ She has no sense of gratitude or shame that other people are working so she doesn't have to

2/ She has no motivation to contribute to the economy

3/ She has no interest in 'cutting her cloth' to cope with the consequences of her personal decisions

4/ She has no apparent awareness that increasingly generous benefits are a factor fuelling inflation and the cost of living which she is currently so concerned about

Over twenty years ago now, I launched a petition to parliament asking for an inquiry into the DPB. A local newspaper wrote about the petition which provoked howls of outrage among beneficiaries. One lady took umbrage at my assertion that being raised on benefits was not good for children. She wrote to the editor saying her children had turned out fine. Indeed, her daughters were now raising their own children on the DPB!

This elicited a response I shall never forget and when in need of some sanity and solace I revisit it:

Here we are, a generation down the track, and it's not just the value of money that is subject to rampant inflation. So is the plague of entitlement.

*(NewstalkZB, Week on Demand, 30/6/23, 9:45am, at 6:00 in,

Lindsay Mitchell blogs here

4,346 views84 comments

84 Kommentare

Ah yes this reminds me of John A Lee’s rant: Labout looks after you from cradle to grave but I’ll look after you from erection to resurrection. Seems that he won

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Overentitled pollies -

Minister Kiri Allan and mayor Tory Whanau.

Perhaps the two should swap notes on how to handle pesky press and other media.

“The worry for [minister] Kiri Allan is that an apparent unanimity may have developed among several senior bureaucrats that things have crossed a line. That accusations of “yelling and screaming” as one senior official has told Stuff, were a rant too far.”

“Wellington Mayor Tory Whanau says she was ”a bit tipsy” when she walked out on a restaurant bill but is doubling down on her denial she asked a waiter if he knew who she was – despite another witness coming forward.”

Explanations yeah right.

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Antwort an

Haha it’s all come home to roost now for Kiri. “. KARMA”. 👍👍👍

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Melissa D
Melissa D
02. Juli 2023

There is only one faction that is to blame for this debacle and that is the Government, they tax you from birth to the grave, even triple taxing you and more on your own money that you just paid taxes on! You get a income and pay taxes, then the money you have left to live is taxed again and again and again for everything you buy and do - We are the only species on the planet who pay taxes to live and die!! Dumb.

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Antwort an

Don’t forget it doesn’t worry the MPs as they get $8,000.00 a month when they retire from Parliament That’s after living on the PIGS BACK For a few years plus free flights

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01. Juli 2023

Yes, it is indeed a plague. It’s also sickening when such entitlement is funded by and large by working families on a fraction of the $96k mentioned.. Can we stop calling it a benefit. It’s now a lifestyle income. Predictably, those that defend the status quo employ a ‘scatter-gun’ mechanism… for example, one commentator mentions those getting the Pension and continuing to work. Wow, how dare they. Try living on your pension and see how that turns out.. you don’t qualify for add-ons nor any tax break, but I digress. The New Zealand taxpayer has become the beneficiaries ATM and I don’t see anything changing post GE.

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Kerre's situation is rare. Having had to live half my life on & off on a benefit from a rare neuro disorder I have had similar decisions to make. As a former tax collector I am well aware that others were paying and I am very grateful to them. However the benefits were not generous but reasonable, if frugal. They could sustain a 2nd class way of life, but satisfying. I have been able to re-marry after my late wife passed on and now have another 3 adult children raised in those circumstances. The price has been care. tolerance and foregoing desires or envy.

Justification is evident in the skills the offspring are bringing to society. One has just joined…

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