International Cat Speculators Since 2006


Regardless of what purpose, the government publishing data on private individuals should make us very uncomfortable.

DPF says Labour used to do this. If that’s the case, provide a link. It’s a bad look and invites invitations of dirty politics.

However, methinks those at The Standard doth protest too much.

Stunned. I’m simply stunned. After speaking out against Paula Bennett’s cuts to the Incentives Training Allowance two solo mothers have had their entire financial details publicly released by her.

This is a disgraceful act of bullying which must surely breach the privacy act but it fits with the pattern we’re seeing from National of digging dirt and attacking anyone that speaks out against them.

The message is clear. Speak out against the Nat’s and they’ll do whatever it takes to drag you through the mud. Meanwhile they’re doing everything they can to deny the opposition any (supposedly public) information that might be used against them.

I haven’t seen this sort of suppression of dissent since Muldoon was in power.

Oh, I can think of a much more recent example… I strongly doubt IrishBill had much to say about her tactics.

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Comments on: "The Government should not Bully" (4)

  1. Of interest: This post was published on the Herald online “your views” section. The strange thing about it is that it exceeds the character limit for posting in that section. The limit is 1200 characters, the post is 3,100 characters. Who is D-V of Wellington that they can get their post inserted against system limits at the Herald? Looks like the propaganda machine is running overtime.

    Link here:

    http://blogs.nzherald.co.nz/blog/your-views/2009/7/27/was-paula-bennett-right-release-income-details-two-solo-mothers/?c_id=1501154&objectid=10587070#message

    Actual posting here:

    “Lets put things into perspective:
    1) No minister has the right to release any information without the express permission of the client. Privacy Act. Its law. There can be no justification for disclosure at all, regardless of what the information holds.
    People here are making a dangerous mistake in using the released information as a justification for disclosure.
    2) As to the actual amount of $715, bear in mind, this is to help clothe, feed, and house 3 (Three) people, not one.
    Basic Weekly Expenses. (I’m guess-timating here as I am not in possession of all the facts.perhaps the kind minister would like to release the expenses of the client too?)
    I think these are reasonable costs, no frills, just the bare necessities.
    $300 Rent (small 2 bedroom place)
    $200 Food (Food For 3 people)
    $60 Petrol (Or transport)
    $30 Phone (LandLine or Mobile)
    $30 Electricity (or Gas)
    $95 Misc (Misc expenses for example but not limited to: School Clothes/Shoes, Books, School excursions, and a hundred other things).
    Not much left to put in the bank for that European Holiday.
    This woman is bringing up 2 kids through school, who, in all probability, will go on to work and pay taxes. On top of that, its not as if she is saving it, the money goes back into our economy, and that money is taxed all the way down the line, so we get a big chunk of it back!
    To all those high horse moral crusaders who are questioning the family circumstances, please, people in life are subject to many different factors, some of which are beyond their control. It is not our place to judge.
    I am speaking from painful experience. 6 Months ago, my wife and I were successfully employed, making some good money. Working hard. Putting money in the bank. Enjoying life, getting ready to have kids, because we could afford it. I even paid cash for a sports car I had always wanted. And paying taxes. When the company we worked for closed overnight (owing pay), we were both out on our ear. Being well educated, experienced, we expected to back in employment with a week somewhere else, so we lived off savings. We cut back, to keep expenses down. Despite looking, applying, being interviewed, neither of us have had offers. 6 months later, the car and the savings are long gone, rent isn’t being paid, basic bills are barely covered.
    Prior to this situation, I would have been shocked to even consider going to Work & Income for assistance. I used to think people on the benefit were no hoper, drug addicts, with 10 kids. In the end, we did, and receive $196 a week to help us through, for which I am, like 99% of beneficiaries, truly grateful.
    While I would never wish a similar set of circumstances on anyone, its funny how a change of situation beyond your control can change your attitude and open your eyes. I am just very thankful that I live in a country where the people and government respect people that have fallen on hard times, or been dealt a bum hand, and help them through, helping them get back on their feet and preserving their dignity. We don’t need politicians undermining these principles by wrongfully disclosing private information for others to judge people by.”

  2. Interesting observation, but I think those who posted forget that people on these sorts of forums are unlikely to read that much text.

    It might be that there’s a bug in the web page that someone is exploiting perhaps, or maybe someone emailed it in.

  3. Half of the comment above is irrelevant:

    bear in mind, this is to help clothe, feed, and house 3 (Three) people, not one)

    Bear in mind, some people work 40 hours a week and don’t make the same amount of money as this women apparently gets in benefits.

    The discussion on what we need to earn (or be given) to pay the bills is a separate issue to the initial argument that this person wanted more entitlements. On that score, the government does not have an endless supply of money – it has to be raised from taxes and allocated as fairly as possible to many competing interests.

    And separate to that argument is the point you make Scrubone, on if their actions constitute an abuse of the governments power. I’m inclined to think it is, irrespective of the circumstances.

    It’s an issue I will do a bit more research on and I’ll see where I stand at the end of the week.

  4. “Bear in mind, some people work 40 hours a week and don’t make the same amount of money as this women apparently gets in benefits.”

    Exactly – they have to reduce their expenses to match their income, there’s an unfortunate tendency promoted by the welfare state to encourage some people to look at these problems the wrong way.

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