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Bullies and Thieves

February 11, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Well it didn’t take long – or maybe it took longer than we thought – but the National lead New Zealand government seems to be up to their old tricks again. You can always tell when National is in power because they will appoint a confrontational, incompetent as minister of education and set about changing the economy to suit the section of the community who already have more than their fair share of the wealth.

Yes, Anne Tolley is forging ahead with the government’s national standards program even though many people, including supporters of the scheme, have recommended a cautious approach. The good old National rhetoric and propaganda is in full force claiming this will increase achievement in education. To quote the popular beer ads: yeah right!

There is some merit in trying to identify kids who aren’t achieving but what’s the point if there’s a totally insufficient amount of money to do anything about it? Also, teachers already know which of their students need help. By applying formal tests they’ll just get a (probably less accurate) version of the information they already know.

So the scheme will fail, of course. What will happen then? Well the government certainly aren’t going to accept the blame so we all know where it will go: on to the teachers. Every year the poor teachers seem to be afflicted with more and more mindless bureaucracy designed to improve education but in fact achieving the complete opposite (using up so much of their time with meaningless paper work that they have less time to actually teach). Then there’s the nonsense of the ERO visit where the worst teachers are rewarded because they produce the best meaningless paperwork. What a system!

So National are doing their best to further degrade our education system – that’s just to be expected. What other nasty little schemes have they got going? Well there’s the latest announcements regarding tax, of course. They look fair. (again: yeah, right!)

Increasing GST while reducing income tax will achieve one thing: it will make the poor effectively poorer while increasing the wealth of the richest. That’s standard National Party policy, of course (why anyone except the rich vote for them, I don’t know) but they won’t admit it.

They claim the reductions in income tax will cover the increase in GST. Maybe theoretically that’s true but the decrease in income tax for the obscenely rich will be much greater than that of the poor (they have a lot more income, after all) and the amount they will need to give back in GST will be a lot less as a proportion of their total wealth. Any loss in total tax revenue will be made up through user-pays schemes which inevitably are to the detriment of the poor.

If the whole scheme was going to be neutral (the increase in GST balancing the decrease in income tax) then why do it? Obviously its just another way to transfer wealth from the poor to the rich. Oh and don’t get me started on the election promise that GST wouldn’t be increased and now will be!

And please don’t give me that garbage about the rich deserving all they have. That’s one of the most pitiful arguments I’ve ever heard: the rich deserve their wealth because they work hard and we know they work hard because they have all that wealth. Sorry to have to say it again, but: yeah right!

Look back through by blog from the last year and you’ll see some cautiously complimentary comments regarding this new government. But it was only a matter of time before their true colours were revealed. They’re just another typical bunch of right wing bullies and thieves!

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