Blog description.

Accentuating the Liberal in Classical Liberal: Advocating Ascendency of the Individual & a Politick & Literature to Fight the Rise & Rise of the Tax Surveillance State.

Liberty and freedom are two proud words that have been executed from the political lexicon: they were frog marched and stood before a wall of blank minds, then forcibly blindfolded, and shot, with the whimpering staccato of ‘equality’ and ‘fairness’ resounding over and over. And not only did this atrocity go unreported by journalists in the mainstream media, they were in the firing squad.

The premise of this blog is simple: the Soviets thought they had equality, and welfare from cradle to grave, until the illusory free lunch of redistribution took its inevitable course, and cost them everything they had. First to go was their privacy, after that their freedom, then on being ground down to an equality of poverty only, for many of them their lives as they tried to escape a life behind the Iron Curtain. In the state-enforced common good, was found only slavery to the prison of each other's mind; instead of the caring state, they had imposed the surveillance state to keep them in line. So why are we accumulating a national debt to build the slave state again in the West? Where is the contrarian, uncomfortable literature to put the state experiment finally to rest?

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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Why This Government Urgently Needs to Pick Up Maryan Street’s Euthanasia Bill.


The answer to my question posed in the title is because self-determination of the manner and means of one's death is an individual’s basic right. But unfortunately politicians follow a dreadful pragmatism, rather than a principled view toward our freedom, so let me provide it.


The most important debate to be had over the next three years in the pursuit of individual liberty was Labour MP Maryan Street’s Dying with Dignity euthanasia bill. I am gutted that Maryan did not get back in last night as that means her bill is dead, with little likelihood the social conservatives in National will look at opening this essential debate. In a time when the Chief Coroner is trying to change the death certification process in order to catch out humane doctors over-prescribing pain medication to bring on early death in judged circumstances, this issue becomes urgent.

In this post and this post to Dr. Mark Peterson, Chair of the New Zealand Medical Association, I explained how the NZMA’s position against euthanasia is based upon a contradiction, or a conceit, rather, and as such, is an irresponsible, dangerous (for doctors and patients), ethical mess. That contradiction is NZMA opposing legal euthanasia, yet with that stance ‘justified’ by dint of the back-street provision they cite of it being ethical for doctors over-prescribing pain killers to keep pain at bay, even if to an extent that might hasten death, despite no threshold or certainty is provided as to what 'over-prescribe' or 'hasten' means. Incredibly on an official level it's the ‘we don’t need euthanasia legalised because it already unofficially occurs’ nonsense. This stance also draws the inference, repugnant to myself, that it's Dr. Peterson and his colleagues who know best and get to decide the circumstances of a death; that the decision over a dignified exit is not up to those dying.

Such a mealy mouthed wording, and professional arrogance, in a matter that concerns all of us at the most poignant part of our lives, dying, is as offensive as it is preposterous. Especially in light of the fact such over-prescription is set to be denied doctors by our Chief Coroner, Judge Neil MacLean, who wants to change the death certification process so that doctors doing precisely this are found out, presumably to face the full force of the law. This means two cruel things: first, those humane mercy releases that do now occur under compassionate doctors in hospices and hospitals will stop; second, pain remediation regimes for the terminally ill will become more conservative, which only means one thing; more pain for the terminally ill.

Forget the ethical and philosophical issues here, this is intolerable and needs fixing by this government as their first item of business; and I repeat by the government, not by private members bill with that insane lottery known as the ballot, but by means of responsible government legislating an essential freedom that should by right be available to all, just as it is in many Western jurisdictions.

Dr Peterson never replied to my second email pointing out the consequences of the Chief Coroner’s current course, and I put it to him, here, that if the haughty NZMA were to poll its members, as their UK equivalent did, I’m sure they would find also their doctors would come to the same majority decision that such a basic freedom is up to we individuals of society, not the medical profession: at the very least, the NZMA should butt out. (And noting that the basic freedom of dying with dignity should never be up to a majority vote:  human rights don’t work like that, for they are inalienable.)

If I can’t convince this National government in this, then if the MPs care to take six lousy minutes of their time, perhaps 29 year old Brittany Maynard can. Brittany has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, and has moved to one of the five American states that allow assisted suicide so that she can die with dignity, in the arms of her husband and mother, on 1 November coming. There is nothing more important this government can do over the next three years, than pass legislation under which the terminally ill in New Zealand can have the same chance at dignity, and a death without suffering, moreover, death on their own terms; please, show some humanity.

"I can't tell you the amount of relief that it provides me to know that I don't have to die the way that I have been told that my brain tumour will take me on my own," Maynard said in the video.

"I will die upstairs in my bedroom that I share with my husband, with my mother and my husband by my side and pass peacefully with some music that I like in the background," she said.





Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Bone Clocks - David Mitchell. Approaching Fifty and Other Crises.



Commuters sway like sides of beef and slump like corpses: red-eyed office slaves plugged into Discmans; their podgier selves in their forties buried in the Evening Standard; and nearly retired versions gazing over west London wondering where their lives went. I am the System you have to beat, clacks the carriage. I am the System you have to beat. But what does ‘beating the system mean? Becoming rich enough to buy one’s manumission from the daily humiliation of employment?’


David Mitchell, The Bone Clocks



I have to say, manumissioning from the day job is the carriage I've been hitched to for a while, though I'm pondering the ticket price. I’ll be 49 years old this month, and instead of a growing contentment there is a growing disquiet, and the demise of a learned laziness I was hoping to retire to. Minutes ago I was sitting on my balcony in the Mahau interrupted from reading The Bone Clocks by a pod of dolphins noisily muscling their way up the Sound in the swift, tight spear formation they use to get somewhere purposely, a fact I never knew about dolphins before buying here - they’ll frolic randomly back down, fed, in two hours, or thereabouts - but in truth for too long I’ve not been able to read a book for and of itself, or watch a movie, without that pressure weighing against my mind that time is running out, and I should be doing something toward immortality. How pompous. Let’s compromise at what my mum would say, something worthwhile.


It's an unquantifiable loss how amongst the walking wounded from the first forty eight years, has been unlearning how to lose myself in a narrative outside my own; be it book or movie, and at this stage of my life when I've afforded finally a cinema room with a six metre screen an earlier iteration of myself would've been fulfilled by. I’ve replaced contentment, and nonchalantly watching the scenery go by, with an agitated-mindfulness that won't leave me alone no matter how much I try. Truly, without wanting to sound like a Shakespearean theme, sorry mum, I think the distraction here is mortality: and it's mine ...


This post is de-railed, already, I think, and I'm mangling a metaphor more than dear old Chris Trotter does. I'll shunt this to a siding and change track.


The System; did I - will I - beat it, at least? What does 'beating the system mean?'


As I've written in the blog before, I’m over the day job – never was a career man - and while endeavouring to complete it each day competently, still hope after many years of ludicrously long hours, to whittle the client base back enough to take four, perhaps five months off a year, in preparation for the reign of my early fifties, with the dream having been to then talk to Mrs H more, and pursue my private projects that do/did mean something – as in, something worthwhile. The plan was to work the System hard for the first half of life, so I could take the second half off, outside the System, doing my own thang. However that’s where a systemic problem has revealed itself; systemic because unfortunately everything connects.


I’ve never understood people who don’t have an abiding passion which gives their life meaning, and through that, hope. Having same is why early on I was so easily able to kick out the crutch of religion, sit still for long amounts of time, and daily put the System to the back of my mind while yet getting on with(in) it. For me the passion has always been a future-self writing books: no matter what the circumstances, there was that image in my mind, held out and held up, hope, but by the end of my forties, an age where many authors have done their best work, I’m not even close to being published (perhaps never will be). Correction, there was twice in Landfall, but time has long since rubbed that out. No, it’s not the ever shortening, ever quickening rail before me to be usefully used that worries me, I'm not scared of hard work; it's the unpublished, unwritten, track record stretching behind that can't be traveled again, and the fear that past performance does indeed indicate future performance, meaning my future dreams were only ever that: imaginary, as I lack the necessary talent, at worst, or at best deferred the spark too long as the System ground me down. But same result. Although look at me writing as if no time is left: I'm only turning 49, that's the new ... well, for those of us a drink a bit much, the new 48, at least. There is time enough, there has to be, I just have to be more mindful of those distractions the System throws up to destroy focus, energy, and joie de vivre, such as politics, which is ultimately, in a System where collectivism has won the day, and we're more than my lifetime away from the necessary revolution or collapse required to save the day, a pointless pursuit for an individual anyway.


And set all that aside, regardless, today I should be able to just sit and enjoy this bloody grand novel  The Bone Clocks, I've worked hard enough to earn that, and it's what I want to do, while looking forward to a movie this afternoon, given the weather is thankfully closing in – there’s been too much nice weather lately that I was supposed to be ‘making the most of.’ Trouble is, I shut my book twenty minutes ago, left the dolphins and the kayaker madly trying to catch them, leaving a jerky trail of diamonds in his wake, and went inside to sit here, this desk, writing this ruddy blog entry, and I don’t know what that means any more than I can tell you what the System is I’m trying to beat. Or was. Perhaps I did beat it, as much as one can do, via the day job, and now the problem is just me.


But everything connects.


David Mitchell is 45 years old, The Bone Clocks is his sixth novel: bastard.


In The Bone Clocks David uses three images I've written into a novel in progress, currently progressed to 112,000 words, meaning I can't use those images, or two of the sentences involved which are almost identical. It's not about legality so much as uniqueness. Three; how could that be? Utter bastard.


Anyway, this's too hard, it’s martini night tonight, praise be to merciful Bacchus, to wilful forgetfulness, and to not dropping out, because ...



If I have doubts that you beat the system by moving up, I damn well know you don’t beat it by dropping out. Remember Rivendell? The summer before I went up to Cambridge a few of us went clubbing at the Floating World in Camden Town. I took Ecstasy and got off with a waifish girl wearing dried-blood lipstick and clothes made of black cobwebs. Spidergirl and I got a taxi back to her place: a commune called Rivendell, which turned out to be a condemned end-of-terrace squat next to a paper recycling plant. Spidergirl and I frolicked to an early Joni Mitchell LP about seagulls and drowsed until noon when I was shown downstairs to the Elrond Room where I ate lentil curry and the squat’s pioneers told me how their commune was an outpost of the post-capitalist, post-oil, post-money future. When one asked me how I wanted to spend my sojourn on Earth, I said something about the media and was bombarded with a collective diatribe about how the system’s media divides people, not connects them. Spidergirl told me that ‘Here in Rivendell, we actually talk to each other, and share tales from wiser cultures, like the Inuit. Wisdom’s the ultimate currency.’ As I left, she asked for a ‘loan’ of twenty pounds to buy a few things from Sainsbury’s. I suggested she recited an Inuit folktale at the check-out, because wisdom is the ultimate currency. Some of her response was radical feminist, most was just Anglo-Saxon. What I took from Rivendell, apart from pubic lice and an allergy to Joni Mitchell that continues to the present day, was the insight that ‘outside the system’ means poverty.’


David Mitchell, The Bone Clocks.



Given radical feminism has now been brought up, and not by me, I'll apologise for this post being all about me. To your health, slavery and dissatisfaction, I hold up by podgy love handles for your inspection, and raise a toast to my Middle Ages …


Sunday, September 21, 2014

My Random Unstructured Thoughts on NZ’s 2014 Election.


The result was a lot better than some scenarios might have been, but we still have socialist, big brother state government that is more dangerous than an outright Left win as it’s in the guise of a party professing to believe in small state, limited government. 


The most important debate to be had over the next three years in the pursuit of individual liberty, was Labour MP Maryan Street’s Dying With Dignity euthanasia bill. I am gutted that Maryan did not get back in last night as that means her bill is dead, with little likelihood the social conservatives in National will look at opening this essential debate. In a time when the Chief Coroner is trying to change the death certification process in order to catch out humane doctors over-prescribing pain medication to bring on early death in judged circumstances, this issue becomes urgent. I am still sure, although Maryan has denied it, Cunliffe pressured her to pull her bill from the ballot pre-election, an occurrence I’m sure Maryan herself now regrets, and I wish she could have been persuaded to have run with it, even if it had meant fighting her leader.


A heartfelt thank you to Labour MP Kelvin Davis for actually going against that same leader early in this election in taking the fight over Maori seat Te Tai Tokerau  to that abomination of hard-left/1% dirty politics, the Internet Mana Party, and ultimately obliterating them from the political map of New Zealand. In Davis, Labour surely have their most viable option for future leader.


While on the Maori Seats, I wrote a piece last month against the libertarian dogma of one-law-for-all in New Zealand and supportive of Maori self-determination. In that I stated the Maori seats only make sense in the context of Maori identity, not within the Left’s class war where the ruling ethic must be no self-determination allowed any group or individual. Maori Party leader Te Ururoa – wish I could spell that without looking it up each time – Flavell recognised this in his party’s Relationship Agreement – not coalition - with National, but was unfortunately punished for it by Maori voters who gave all but one of the Maori seats to Labour thus consigning their votes, with their hopes, to oblivion. I am glad that National will talk to the Maori Party, and personally hope they give Maori Affairs to Te Ururoa, so Maori continue to have a voice at the table where decisions are made. If Maori had given Maori Party seven seats, imagine the further influence they would’ve had.


The Greens found, again, the country doesn’t believe child poverty, or poverty per se, can be solved by growing the welfare state, but rather by dealing in the causes of poverty, particularly the cycle of dependence that has been grown on the state. Ahem, self-determination.


Thank you New Zealand voters for making Winston Peter’s irrelevant over the next three years.


Thank you New Zealand voters for keeping the xenophobic, authoritarian Conservatives irrelevant for the next three years, although this morning no commentator is giving Colin the congratulations he deserves: 88,000 votes *is* a remarkable feat.


This morning’s interview on The Nation between Patrick Gower, Jamie Whyte and David Seymour was a perfect example of how a cynical MSM operates to exact its hatred of Libertarian politics. Patrick, who had been monotonously grilling his two victims over the disadvantageous scenario of leader Whyte outside Parliament, looked Seymour direct in the eye and asked an unrelated policy question, Seymour began the answer to be interrupted by Patrick saying ‘why doesn’t the party leader answer that’, redirecting the camera to an obviously confused - because he wasn't asked the question - Whyte, so trying by deceit and malice, actually, a school boy level trick, to set ACT up as incompetent where it isn’t. Whyte has valid complaints at the treatment he received by too many journalists, putting the answers they wanted into his mouth, or letting their inner child loose to write some infantile articles and tweets on various pronouncements from him. Normally I like Gower, but this was showmanship, not interviewing.


The Twittersphere was repugnant abundant with the Left wondering why the Left vote  collapsed, given Hager and #dirtypolitics. This is my answer:















This Labour/Green wannabe government would’ve been dreadful: in his paid piece on NBR, editor Nevil Gibson sums up well the Left’s problem:


Labour and the Greens, with partial support from New Zealand First, pinned their hopes on defeating National with populist policies of nationalisation, price controls, higher taxes, increased minimum wages and curbs on immigration, investment and property purchases.


They all signalled major changes in monetary and economic policy that would have been detrimental to business and the country generally.



With that, thank goodness it’s over, I’ve been getting bored with my own blog. I’ll continue on politics from time to time, I’m built that way, but back to the odd book review and, well, life, pieces as well. Plus I’m almost finished a novel I’ve spent the last four years writing in every spare moment I can crib late night and early morning: it is probably unpublishable, (albeit I’ll try the traditional route), but I may soon post some discards. For the rest of today I’m reading David Mitchell’s new novel, The Bone Clocks; I’ve been looking forward to it for weeks.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Moment Our Privacy Disappeared Into Dotcom’s Ego.


Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald – I have had big problems with Assange from the get-go - could not have picked a worse vehicle to deliver their important message about mass surveillance than last night’s circus The Moment of Truth, paid for and planned by a man both men should have had the nouse to keep a great distance from. Instead of journalistically delivering their data in a non-partisan forum called New Zealand’s free press, they both used their judgement to nonsensically get involved in the partisan hard-Left politics of our tiny country, in a political hit event designed to disrupt a democratic election with dirty politics, so making me suspect the judgement of both men over all: I'm gutted, disgusted and appalled.
 

And that’s all I have to say on that fiasco, because I’m on holiday trying to pull together a private project that has nothing to do with this blog. Though that said, I will never let the below hypocrisy pass unchallenged, being the contradiction over privacy of a Left whose authoritarian model of the state necessitates mass surveillance with penalties for non-compliance, and has set up the most ruthless secret police forces in history to enforce the destruction of the private lives of every individual. Of every Left MP and blogger I’ve pressed to respond to this, not one has:
 








 

To be frank, Sue, mass surveillance is despicable in any guise, albeit I’m happier being protected from terrorists, than being protected from use of my own income or property by the irrational cult of redistribution – irrational because welfare begets poverty, and law aimed at forcing the common good on a people, leads to an embittered, barbaric society, not a better one.
 

 

Further Reading:
 

 

 


 

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Using the Tax State as a Weapon against Our Humanity. #Individualism #ChildPoverty #Taxation #GreenParty #RichPricks


 
Metiria and Green co-leader Russel Norman will illogically spend $400 million on paying the In-Work child credit for children born of parent(s) not ‘in work’. Logically this can only result in babies that otherwise wouldn’t be born, being born into homes that are living wholly on benefits. Such babies will automatically fall into that statistical category of children living in poverty, by dint of there being no ‘income other than a benefit’ coming into the homes they live. So, employ this policy, as ill-conceived as unfortunately the children will be, and despite we already have one child in five born into a house reliant on a benefit, then it is absolutely guaranteed when you run the child poverty stats in five years, ten years, a generation, the number of children living in poverty will have risen. It has to. When that happens, the Left will say this is awful, and demand of us yet bigger and bigger doses of collective responsibility – which will ultimately have  destroyed individual responsibility completely –  and insist we spend more upon more to stop child poverty, so moving tax rates up to 50%, to 60%, to 75%. Repeat cycle over and over.
 

Although this post is about something more sinister...
 

Note particularly the first and last tweets in the following, then my links that follow to what the Free World once was, but now destroyed under the oppression of a massive, pervasive tax surveillance state that strips us of our identities, our humanity, our property, and so of our classical liberal birth right: liberty.
 




 

Metiria seems to be appearing in this blog a lot lately, or rather, naturally, given the Green Party's coercive ethic is the antithesis of the free, voluntary society I care about (to appropriate the Green Party slogan). Conveniently forgetting, as the Green Party doesn’t, that the top 19% of taxpayers already pay 86% of the personal income tax take, and after net transfers families earning below $60,000 pay nothing, it remains more troubling how Metiria so glibly performs the necessary dehumanisation involved in the persecution being enacted here. This 3% are merely rich pricks – so called by a former Labour Finance Minister - whom in the wrong headed Left world view are the scape goats cause of the poor - they're not - and whose very humanity is thus denied them; rich pricks are not individuals filled with goals and aspirations from the wealth they have created; the state can ignore the circumstances of their wealth, the risk taking and sleepless nights they’ve had, many of them in their early business years risking everything on each transaction they took; and finally in Metiria’s tweet, the state can ignore the fact a rich prick's personal belief born of experience, not electioneering, may well be that their money used to grow the welfare state will make poverty worse, not better, and they could use their wealth to make people independent of the state rather than dependent on it, simply by reinvesting in the choices, opportunities and value from competition in the free economy, or for many wealthy philanthropists, private, targeted, charity. It's the unfounded arrogance of the Left politick that Metiria believes she knows better than these rich pricks do, whom through the enactment of corrupt law are made her personal bank, their effort to be confiscated from the lolly shop of their wallets and doled out to  her voting base. And don’t think this stops at the 3%. We have a regressive progressive tax system, the Green Party, and Labour, will be using that progressivity down all the income bands to extract more tax from all of us who work and strive to better our lot, and the aspirations we have for our families, just as they will impose a capital gains tax to fleece us of the savings on which we've already paid tax once: if you’re reading this post and are a net taxpayer, or own investments saved for retirement, be warned, you’re a rich prick, and it's a lot more than a little tax the Green and Labour parties will be asking you for (and that’s before we get onto carbon and water taxes which ultimately are borne by the consumer).
 

Don’t misunderstand me, for I understand many people like Metiria are not evil people, indeed, they’re good people; I understand and respect their individuality in a way they will never respect mine, the taxpayer’s, or the 3%. In fact, Metiria would probably scratch her head wondering why I am so scathing in the above paragraph and be feeling a bit miffed, as I don’t think she understands, circa 2014 and so far down the road to our serfdom, how offensive all the assumptions in her tweet are. Like every tyranny in modern history that starts out with the best of intentions, the Left, especially, and I include the National Party in that, perpetrate evil in the theft of what is not theirs to take, and the police state powers of surveillance and forceful intrusion into a life legislated to the taxing authority ensuring it's carried out; and they perpetrate evil in the use of this stolen property to widen and deepen a cruel dependence to the welfare state of the very people they think they’re helping up, but are not because they don't have the mind to deal with causes. Finally, understand that unfortunately for those on the Left who are not kind hearted, unlike Metiria, and there's a preponderance of them, the well-spring of their ethic is ugly; an ugliness never far from the surface, as this very thread so soon portrayed.
 

















 

Hattip to NotPC for this salutary reminder:
 

 
 

Noting that to tax is to take, comrade Harriet’s end tweet is repugnant; the bared teeth of unprincipled malice glistening in its overt threat:  this is the compassionless, vindictive machine of state waiting to eat those of us who think differently, and grok from history the evil of a big brother state and dare to challenge it. Remember Harriet's is finally the Truth that lies behind every principle and action of the Left and statists of all hues: the brute force of the tax surveillance state, and the rendering of every individual privateless and powerless before it. I’ve written on it before when Chris Trotter took his cultivated, urbane mask off, to show the same ugly malice within, wishing on rich pricks that the ‘IRD would squeeze them until their pips squeaked.’ When I pointed this tweet out later to Metiria, Harriet said I’d taken her out of context: no, as with here, I’ve simply put her into context, that being the context of our modern history.
 

Pure and simple Metiria's tweet is persecution of the most vile type, and for many of the Left conducted with a cold-hearted spite, and in others, good people like Metiria, from an ignorance born of an arrogance the Left have, unmindful of consequences thinking themselves morally superior in their compassion with my money.
 

Bullshit.
 

The Green policy of throwing $1 billion at child poverty, can only grow child poverty, and with it the brass knuckles of the tax surveillance state required to fund it. Everyone loses. Look at it again: Metiria and Green co-leader Russel Norman will illogically spend $400 million on paying the In-Work child credit for children born of parent(s) not ‘in work’. Logically this can only result in babies that otherwise wouldn’t be born, being born into homes that are living wholly on benefits. Such babies will automatically fall into that statistical category of children living in poverty, by dint of there being no ‘income other than a benefit’ coming into the homes they live. So, employ this policy, as ill-conceived as unfortunately the children will be, and despite we already have one child in five born into a house reliant on a benefit, then it is absolutely guaranteed when you run the child poverty stats in five years, ten years, a generation, the number of children living in poverty will have risen. It has to. When that happens, the Left will say this is awful, and demand of us yet bigger and bigger doses of collective responsibility – which will ultimately have  destroyed individual responsibility completely –  and insist we spend more upon more to stop child poverty, so moving tax rates up to 50%, to 60%, to 75%. Repeat cycle over and over; get those IRD auditors jack booted up and inveigled into taxpayers homes, offices, families and lives. It's notable that when I put this argument on twitter I was accused - not by Metitia - of beneficiary bashing, and told ‘all children are precious’: to which I respond grow up and start thinking; yes all children are precious, when born, but un-conceived children don’t exist. The same respondent also went ugly, indeed called Metiria into the thread, when I pressed her to the question of where does an individual and their partner's responsibility to have a child in prudent circumstances end, and the taxpayer's victimisation in being forced to pick up the tab for their lifestyle choice begin.

Finally, one heartening statistic from a National MP who is having an effect; that Minister reviled by the Left, Paula Bennett. As reported by Lindsay Mitchell, even with her moderate toughening of welfare provision, under her tutelage the trend of teenage pregnancy and 16 to 17 year old solo parents on a benefit, across all ethnicities, has plummeted: that is how to combat and abolish child poverty. A Labour/Green government would destroy the gains made here, and soon have this age group back on the teat of state.
 

 Bye the bye, I invited Metiria to debate Green’s child poverty policy with me in the comments of my last post, but there was, rather than a failure of nerve, to give Metiria the benefit of the doubt, I’m assuming a failure of time, after all this is election year:
 




 

But I’m all for equal opportunity, so regarding this post, I’ll give Metiria, or Russel, the chance to respond to a challenge I made of every politician long ago, and to which none have accepted, to explain to me what a fair tax is please?
 

 

Further reading:
 

What the Free West stood for, before it was destroyed by the Liberal Left; the small, free state, and limited government - what the ANZAC’s were fighting for.
 

The limited instance that tax was meant to be on its inception. (Telegraph).
 

Why Green’s Child Poverty policy will not tackle child poverty, indeed, will create greater child poverty.
 

 

Footnote:
 

My earlier post on race relations and for Maori self-determination is being discussed in the Right wing blogs: good. You can see me in the comments of this piece. I don’t seem to be winning any converts, and possibly throwing myself from some parts of the Libertarian canon (I hope not, because if we can’t encompass different viewpoints, then we’ve sunk below our own classical liberalism.)
 

Anyway, just call me Neville No Friends (sorry for Neville bashing, mea culpa).

 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

National’s Tax Cuts Are (Importantly) Symbolic.


I don’t vote National, they’re almost the socialists, and every bit the statists, that Labour are, just a tad more fiscally responsible, given Cunliffe’s besotted Keynesianism. However the mooted minor tax cuts three years out are important symbolically in a way the LeftTwits cannot understand having turned their backs to the free society, though is plain to Libertarians who realise that tax is the truncheon on our backsides of the tax surveillance state. I explained it to Labour candidate, tax lecturer, Deborah Russell, and I publish my advice merely as a service to the confused, tormented Left who’re also flailing about in their anger and ignorance over #dirtypolitics having not changed the polls one bit – I give of myself like this, no charge, because I’m a helpful soul:

 













 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Child Poverty and the Irresponsibility of Not Engaging with Causes: A Challenge to MSM.


 

Here we go again; I’ve grown to hate this post with all its variations, but given the shameless nonsense being spoken this election year which voters will be taking to the emoting booth, this post is the antidote. On TV One's (last) Sunday report on child poverty via solo mum of six, I am extracting from my previous race relations post the final one third regarding the issue of child poverty, with my challenge to MSM reporters and Left politicians to ask the necessary questions about causes, because only those questions can address this cycle of child poverty created by welfare dependency. Despite being an extract, I’m sure you’ll pick up the context. Incidentally, that race relations post didn’t update on Blogger blogrolls so many regulars didn’t read it (pity as it was new perspectives on the issue, and controversially the classical liberal position against one law for all, given Maori have every right to pursue self-determination).

 

Extract follows …

 

Back to the topic at hand, before the Whyte interview, Native Affairs ran a piece on the dearth of housing for the poor, however, for me, it ended up being about something entirely else, which further served to demonstrate an annoying miss by the Native Affairs reporting – though I hasten to note, a lack of rigour (nerve) shared by all current affairs on TVNZ and TV 3. (Indeed, I’ll put a plug in for Maori TV, the channel I watch as much of as any other, due to its exceptional movie selection which beats every station bar none, plus the channel runs some of the best current affairs, such as Native Affairs.)
 

The story on housing was framed by interviewing five – from memory – individuals who were living it dire conditions. The opening interview was a teenage mother who had been living in a car with her baby; the woman – sorry, girl – had herself been brought up by her solo dad living on a benefit. The father of the girl’s baby was neither seen nor mentioned: that is, he’d scarpered from both his fatherly, and financial responsibilities.
 

Stop. In those last two sentences how many bad life choices, across three generations, are evident? The summation of those bad choices is called a cycle. And then it got worse. Apart from a single respondent who was a male living in his car, the remaining three respondents were all teenage girls, all with babies, the final one had had not long given birth to her second – conceived while living in a car, as was the first, presumably – all living in appalling circumstances, not a teenage father in sight, and no extended family for support. For those readers I am annoying right now, if you read that and can guess the multitude of problems I have with these girls and their missing, irresponsible sperm donors – they aren’t fathers – then even as huffing and puffing with your indignation, you were thinking the exact same thing as I was.
 

Which brings me to my beef with the reporting of this piece. The circumstances of these teenage girls with their fatherless babies is disgraceful and my first reaction is to emote: give them money, house them, do something! And yes, something must be done – don’t run the arrogant high and mighty Left tactic on me assuming I’m some heartless bastard while you have a monopoly on compassion; these girls and their children have to be catered for, yes, but this cycle has to be broken and that won’t be done by subsiding future births. For surely it is also compassionate to understand why too many people are making not just these irresponsible, but insane life decisions, and on how our welfare state incentivises this. What chance have these babies got of breaking the cycle of their parent? From memory, pursuant to the last statistics I read on Lindsay Mitchell’s blog, we are up to one in four babies now born into a family dependent on a benefit. Perhaps the Native Affairs selection was unrepresentative, but four out of five, really? We will never understand this cycle until we face it and ask the hard questions which the Native Affairs reporting did not ask: namely, why did you girls decide to get pregnant when you were in no position financially nor emotionally to raise children; on getting pregnant, why did you decide to first take your babies through to term, and then on doing so, keep them; where are the fathers?
 

Hard arse isn’t it. But we have to be hard to break this cycle. As to where are the fathers - Liberty Scott speaks well to this point:
 

 

In an age where contraception is cheap and universally available, without shame, to anyone of breeding age, where it is possible to trace fathers of children through DNA testing to prove their responsibility, child poverty should be exceedingly rare.
 

 

What the reporter of this piece never did, nor have I seen it done on similar reports run by current affairs on the networks – remember mum of eight, ninth on the way with her Sky decoder – was give us the backstories, with the shame of that being all long term solutions come from those backstories, not patch up after-the-birth welfare solutions. My challenge to Native Affairs on stories such as this is to go beyond the level we were given here and investigate causes, not just make causes out of the welfare patch-ups that set lives lost on the next cycle of dependency. And same to the networks, thinking of Bryan Bruce’s appalling documentaries before the 2011 elections, and Nigel Latta’s fluff pieces showing currently - his opening piece on inequality was one-sided nonsense - as Karl du Fresne writes, Latta as celebrity, not journalism.
 
 
 


While I’m on welfare patch-ups - I've lost control of this piece anyway - the Green’s announced policy of paying the In Work Credit for children of those Not In Work, to be called Children’s Credit at cost of $400 million a year, is callous, cynical nonsense: how can they not understand the direct result of that policy will be many more children born into poverty? Again, it’s called a cycle; look at the lives of these four girls and their children on the Native Affairs piece. This disregard for responsibly assessing (obvious) consequences is cruel. Lindsay Mitchell states it well enough:
 
Yet the Greens see no value in paid work. No value in children growing up with working role models.No value in actually earning an income; participating, contributing and producing.

All they see is a quick cash cure (with no guarantee the money will be spent on the children) which comes with the almighty risk that more children will grow up welfare dependent as the financial rewards of working, as meagre as they are, disappear.

I must have said it hundreds of times. Welfare made families poor. More of it is not the answer.
 
Economist Matt Nolan also makes a pertinent point regarding the untested assumptions underlying redistribution, and the avoidance of hard choices to fix causes:
 
Comments like this are a bit misleading “Kiwi kids growing up in poverty are three times more likely to be admitted to hospital, five times more likely to die of cot death, and 27 times more likely to get rheumatic fever, and die earlier than those who are better off.”:  This doesn’t tell us what the marginal impact of income transfers will be – as we need to know WHY this is occurring within a group.  Is it income adequacy – or is lack of income adequacy correlated with some other factor that drives these outcomes (education, cultural/social institutions?).  These questions are ugly – but if we are interested in dealing with certain outcomes we need to put some effort into understanding the outcome, rather than inferring that income transfers alone will solve it.
 
 
Or as I said to Metiria:
 




 
Before I move on, my use of ‘cynical’ in that tweet was correct on a party level, but not on the personal level of Metiria, I regret using it and will use a further post to retract, sorry Metiria, but these topics press my buttons because they are so important. Morgan Godfrey has recently published on The Daily Blog, an interview with Metiria, which contains further examples of that type of every day racism people of my upbringing cannot comprehend in how thoroughly and intimately it soaks the lives of non-pakeha, but in which Metiria also says, referring to her Left roots:
 
“I come from a working class Maori family, but we had a very strong upbringing… we were the household where everybody would come and stay if they were in trouble, particularly financial trouble. There was a constant flow of people… My parents, at the same time, wanted to create a middle class life for us. On the outside we had a very flash house, but on the inside it never had any carpet or anything.”
 
In that statement is the point of difference between Metiria and myself, which is between the Left ethic and myself. If the welfare state resulted in extended whanau/families functioning like that, it would have been an arguable success. But welfare has done the opposite, as shown in this Native Affairs piece, by atomising community and family relationships. From pages 77 and 94-95 of David Schmidtz’s contribution to David Schmidtz’s and Robert E. Goodin’s important 1998 book, Social Welfare and Individual Responsibility: For and Against:
 
If communitarians are right to say Western society has been atomized, then surely one of the causes has been the state’s penchant for making itself (rather than the community) the primary focus of public life….
 
What explains market society’s unparalleled success in helping people to prosper? The key, I have argued, lies in background institutions, especially property institutions, that lead people to take responsibility for their own welfare….
The welfare state would have made people better off if it had led neighbors to rely on each other and on themselves, but it seems to have done the opposite.
 
One of the Green Party’s electioneering techniques this year is Twitter followers photographing selfies holding boards bearing the Green slogan, ‘I’m party voting Green because I care about people’. Well to the Green Party I say do you arrogantly think I don't? And you're not stupid people, yet you avoid the hard questions and the hard reality of poverty from which the only solutions to poverty can come, and choose policies that will only grow poverty: why is that?
 
And this is before we get to the obvious philosophical argument of tax as theft, and why are single people, and couples who choose not to have children, forced to fund the life choices of those who do? And look at the surveillance, the destruction of rights and privacy, required to run the tax state to pay for it – it makes GCSB and SIS look circumspect.
 
So Jamie, why not drop the race card for this election and concentrate on a single policy you could politick that you understood, being to get us over that foundation stone of dependency we have created, and which once deconstructed would begin quickly paring down the size/need of a welfare state so that it would be of a scale almost unrecognisable in two generations: that is, electioneer on a single policy of stopping the state paying for childbirth and child raising, and stopping this in all its forms. This is where it will get hard but is necessary so that people begin making prudent life choices, not the insane choices I see around me. So, middle class welfare in the form of Working for Families goes. If you are on the DPB with four children on the day of the election, fine, but no payment for any more children conceived while on DBP. No DPB for teens having babies, instead, either think before procreation about your circumstances, or, failing that, look to your family and extended family to provide for you and the new baby, or else there is adoption or abortion. I always have to cover myself in pieces like these, saying I can hear the emoting yells of ‘uncaring monster’ hurled at me as I write, and you can't punish the children, but I’ll put the money I’ll be saving in tax on the eventuality after two or three generations there will be a preponderance of caring extended families again, especially if in a separate Maori system, whanau is strengthened, rather than this destruction and alienation of community and family that welfare has wrought as evidenced by these lonely girls in the Native Affairs piece.
  
That one measure, don’t pay for child birth and child raising, keep welfare ‘only’ for exceptional circumstances, not the rule always created, will stop the child poverty cycle, turn the tide on the big brother state, and with that the dependency which crushes aspiration. Instead of as in the UK currently where there are twice as many children with a TV in their home as a biological father, resulting in homes of increasing domestic violence born of the poverty cycle of welfare, we will have a society characterised by a peaceful diversity, fulfilled people in supportive families, and prosperity.
 
 
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