Wednesday, February 02, 2022

Underneath the official unemployment rate announced today

Unemployment is now at 3.2 percent.



Can I think of another word beginning with 'W'?


The percentage of people aged 18 to 64 claiming an unemployment benefit (Jobseeker) is 6 percent.

There's 188,000 of them.

In Northland the official unemployment rate is 3.3 percent, but 10.2 percent are on the Jobseeker benefit.

Lots of people are no longer 'unemployed' because nobody is requiring them to look for a job. OR they are content working a few hours (but not enough to affect their benefit).

The age of anxiety

 Not a worrier by nature I note with a degree of objectivity that the human brain is now constantly assaulted by messages designed to make people act out of fear. If you think I speak of covid you are wrong.

For example, a warning currently being read out during the weather forecast on NewstalkZB:

Heat Alert

Significant heat forecast for Lower Hutt on Sunday 30 January to Wednesday 2 February. Drink plenty of water, stay out of the sun, and avoid extreme physical exertion.

What earthly use is that? Our bodies tell us when it's hot and what to do - IF WE CAN. Thousands of outdoor workers cannot avoid the sun or physical exertion in it. I've been working up the back on our hill and the sweat stings when it runs in your eyes. Should I dash indoors, oscillate my folding fan and mop my brow? Truly the message is paternalistic poppycock.

But as I toil on with my radio earpiece in for company, I am subject to relentless advertising that is designed to make me feel worried and sad. 

You could face a large vet bill and be forced to put your beloved pet down! Which starts me thinking about all the beloved pets I've buried albeit at the end of their natural lives. Take action! Buy insurance.

Then ACC. If you get hurt think about who else gets hurt. Who'll bath you? Who'll walk your dog? Jesus, my dog again. 

Next up the friendly funeral directors. Can your family afford to bury you? Don't leave them with a massive bill. Pre-pay your funeral. Download our application form today. Plan it yourself. Be in control. Seriously? I want to control my own funeral? I'll be dead. What difference does it make?

An aged care facility says, we are watching your old folk as they sleep. Some days are hard, some days are sad, somedays are full of fun. But we care. And we are there. OMG. Lay it on me.

Change channels.

Are you over 50? Have you had a prostate test?? NO! Then have you had a breast scan?? NO!

Earthquake commission. You'll need 140 litres of water per person to get through in the event of a disaster. (How many water-filled coke bottles have I stored? Nowhere near enough. But we stopped buying plastic because of the plastic crisis. Aaaaggh. What am I going to store 140 litres in?)

Have you got an elderly relative who is showing signs of depression? Are they forgetting to empty the mail box and buy food? Good lord. We are all worried about our elderly parents in their 80s and 90s. I need a break ...

YOU can buy peace of mind if you get our mobile medical alert system. Peace of mind ... 

ARE YOU HAVING TROUBLE SLEEPING???  No wonder. Sleep Drops is the answer.

Oh no. Here comes that absolutely doozy.

"Look again, look again" Waka Kotahi telling me how frightening intersections are. Like an incessant window wiper, "Look again, LOOK AGAIN." I would knock the woman on the head with my spade if she stepped out of the radio.

But back to water. Don't swim if you can't float on your back for an extended period. Swim only between the flags. Drownings are at an all-time high. Don't over-estimate your ability.

But it's so effing hot. 

Don't go near the Hutt River. Deadly toxic algae has been detected. It'll kill your dog. Ingested poisoned possum carcasses swept down the river and ending on Wellington harbour beaches will kill your dog.  Fat lot of good my pet insurance will be then.

I look at my faithful dog lying near at hand. I can't take much more. If I wasn't depressed, after listening to a day's worth of advertising I surely would be.

BUT but but there are oodles of numbers I can ring to get help. Ring help-line, 24 hour counselling, anywhere, anytime! Only $1.99 a minute. Phew. That's only ... $120 an hour!@#$%

What a dilemma. Pay for pet to live, my funeral, my peace of mind or counselling, which I am now in dire need of. Life is so stressful. My usual reason and calm have been clobbered.

As a friend recently observed, if there is just one good thing about getting older it's that we won't have to put up with this crap for much longer.

Sunday, January 30, 2022

When words say so much

 According to RNZ the PM is a covid close contact and has to isolate. The following sentence made me laugh:

In line with Ministry of Health advice she will be tested immediately tomorrow and will isolate until Tuesday, a press statement said.

Doesn't that beautifully sum up this government? Doesn't know the difference between 'immediately' and 'tomorrow'.