Sunday, January 29, 2006

Don Brash on the welfare state

Don Brash has a guest opinion piece on Muriel Newman's site this week. Over the holidays he read UK author James Bartholomew's The Welfare State We Are In. Rodney Hide read this some time back and blogged extensively on various facets of the book.

I was surprised that Don is inclined to think the situation in the UK is worse than it is here. Personally I think it might be the other way around. But that's a big call given Bartholomew looks at the total welfare state, not just the effects of the benefit system. What I base my instincts on, I'm not quite sure. Just as I am not quite sure what Don bases his on. Some factual comparisons might be called for.

(But a solicited comment from an insider about our health system goes, "It is seriously ill yet staggering on. You have to ask yourself what is going on when you can't give away a GP practice and pharmacists sell their pharmacies to go and work for somebody else in Ireland)

What I am more optimistic about is New Zealand's ability to improve the situation. Here, our political system and relatively small population hold much more potential for positive and rapid change than can be expected in the United Kingdom.


Anonymous said...

"I spoke of the need to be sure that the hugely increased numbers of those drawing the sickness and invalids’ benefits are actually entitled to those benefits. "

My husband, as a leader in business, took your project against the DPB to fellow business people some years ago. NOT ONE would sign your petition. Because you are NOT opposed to the welfare state as you claim- you are opposed to WOMEN receiving benefits. You make no mention of the sickness and invalid's benefit.We presume that is OK because it is not targeted at women.

My husband's parents were divorced in an era when divorce was deeply unacceptable. In fact it ruined my father in law's career and he had to emigrate to NZ.There was no DPB back then and they relied on the Salvation Army for charity. We both agree the DPB should not be paid indefinitely, but it is not the demon you think it is - and society should NOT go back.

"I have a dream that one day, women will again be vacuuming in dresses and pearl necklaces, and be dependent on men! I have a dream!"

I repeat my claim - you are a misogynist who appeals to dead beat men with an axe to grind.

Trevor Loudon said...

You Ruth are a misguided semi socialist who doesn't know what you are talking about. I believe Lindsay targets the DPB because it harms not just one person (as does the dole or sickness benefit)but wrecks whole families. People might have the right to wreck their own lives, but they the DPB stuffs the kids as well. Keep it up Lindsay.