Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Things To Do

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  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Ploughshares have been around for ages. They marked the ann. of Guantanamo in CHCs square earlier this year.

    In the 1/2 hour I caught up with family friends there was only one yank who did his nanna. Most were very positive towards them.

    I would have been the youngest there by a decade or two, so not sure if I know the people who broke into the base.

    This was a strike at our defense infrastructure with political motive. Funny how Helen has called their attack on the Spy base "senseless vandalism".

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    Perhaps the surprise is that it took so long for the latte-sippers to get to that point too....

    Of course, you know I wasn't implying that the poor feel a disproportionate sense of entitlement, but I suppose if you're that way inclined politically...

    Anyway, I believe that the latte-sippers in the top tax bracket (I'm a card-carrying member myself) should STFU about their dumb entitlements, frankly. Learn how to cook various nutritious and cheap meals with canned beans, and zip it. There are thousands and thousands of people in this country worse off than us. Let's address their straitened circumstances before having some sort of 'but it's not FAIR' whingefest, shall we?

    (I think I might be mentally turning into a crusty old woman who lived through the Great Depression. Get off my lawn!)

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    As an IT consultant, I have no problem whatever with the above issues - it'll just send our rates up and I need a new car.

    Plus, the Brits had multi-rate GST (VAT) in 1973, when computers were a lot more primitive than today.

    The main problem with removing GST on food, as somebody mentioned above, is that it is an inefficient way to help poor people.

    Taking GST off food will save somebody spending $100 a week on food $11 a week. But it will save a rich person spending $500 a week on food $55 a week.

    A $5k personal allowance would give every earner $20 a week, so helping low earners more. A Universal Basic Income would be even better.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    But I'd strongly recommend picking up a copy of the novel, and considering the splendid example of Mrs Jellyby whose "Telescopic Philanthropy" doesn't require any empathy to be extended to her own family -- or any other close than Africa.

    Oh, and Craig, I read the chapter for the first time just now (I'm afraid I can't bear Dickens and his serialising - my attention span is too short. It's a failing on my part, I know), but I have no idea what your point is. She spends so much time on her African charity that her own children are neglected. OK. But what's the relevance to this discussion, (she says thickheadedly)? We're all better off dealing with our own problems and not caring about others' problems...? Or...?

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    Hey Shep, wondering if you could provide more info, they're called the ploughshares, armed with sickles, are they farmers or are they pinkos?

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Brash makes good points in his Herald article. As he says, it's a thin-end-of-the-wedge thing too. What is 'essential' anyway? Why stop at food? What about clothing, housing, medicine? How are they less essential?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report Reply

  • A S,

    Anyway, I believe that the latte-sippers in the top tax bracket (I'm a card-carrying member myself) should STFU about their dumb entitlements, frankly. Learn how to cook various nutritious and cheap meals with canned beans, and zip it.

    The thing is, they don't appear to be inclined to STFU anymore, and it looks like an increasing number are looking the Nats up and down as a better proposition for them.

    Being generous is feasible only when you consider you have resource to spare. An increasing number look to be of the view that charity begins at home...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2007 • 269 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    you don't starve to death without them

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Housing *is* GST-exempt. At least, rent and mortgages are.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Housing *is* GST-exempt. At least, rent and mortgages are.

    k...I'll believe you. My bad...I'm not an accountant, and I don't want to be paying him any more than I already am.

    you don't starve to death without them

    No, you could just die of pneumonia instead.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    not if you've already starved to death.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    <qoute>you don't starve to death without them</quote>
    You do if you spent all your money on them and have none left for food. ;)

    Since Nov 2006 • 903 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    I need lunch so I can get a dictionary out and learn how to spell quote.

    Since Nov 2006 • 903 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    I need lunch so I can get a dictionary out and learn how to spell quote.

    not before sharing the secret of italics!!
    thanks

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Mark here's one I found on U-Tube.

    Very much pinkos and an older crowd. I seem to remeber Quakers & the Catholic Workers - all pasifists.

    Here's one from Pine Gap - Catholic Workers

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    Lattes are clearly essential.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1716 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    ...but I have no idea what your point is. She spends so much time on her African charity that her own children are neglected. OK. But what's the relevance to this discussion, (she says thickheadedly)? We're all better off dealing with our own problems and not caring about others' problems...? Or...?

    Danielle - if you're thick, we could do with a lot more of your brand of stupid in the world. (And I'm not a big fan of Dickens either -- can't quite see anyone on a soapbox without wanting to knock them over. More of a Trollope man.:) ) My is that Mrs Jellyby is not short of empathy (which is a good thing -- clinical sociopaths make a dreadful mess) but its meaningless without effective and rational action. God knows that there's more than enough harm caused by people who have the very best of intentions, but never quite got around to thinking their wise schemes all the way through.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    The main problem with removing GST on food, as somebody mentioned above, is that it is an inefficient way to help poor people.

    I am not sure how to say this more politely, but you are wrong.

    Cutting GST is a very efficient way of helping poorer folk. For one thing, you don't need arbitary measures of "poorness", you don't need gangs of Government employees to determine whether someone is poor enough to qualify and as a "poor" person you don't need to waste hours filling in forms attending interviews or getting your local charity to advocate on your behalf - just to prove to these employees that you are indeed poor enough.

    One of the great gains of the post WW2 welfare states was to remove the Dickensian stigma that was traditionally attached with receiving assistance from the state of charity. One of the great losses of the 80s and 90s has been the re-attachment of that stigma.

    As for as the long term nature of recent food price rises...I would not be too sure about that. The protectionism of Europe, the USA and Japan has very much skewed global production incentives. In many ways this is chickens coming home to roost, unfortunately it is the very poor nations that are suffering disproportionately.

    I am with Deborah though, this thread is making me grumpy.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    Sorry, that was Danielle. Is Deborah grumpy as well? Can we start a XV?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    The Grumpiness XV? I'd probably be MVP in no time.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Sorry to run off and a tangent but here is Swords to Ploughshares link & a full profile of the guys who did it.

    http://ploughshares.org.nz/

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    As long as I can be captain!

    Actually, I've been staying silent because the topic area is far too close to my old employment.

    New Lynn • Since Nov 2006 • 1447 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    Shame rugby doesn't have goalies, in my experience they are *always* grumpy. Is there an equivalent in rugby? Fly half, maybe. More prima donna 's, really, but the two traits go together.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • A S,

    And there I was finding the different perspectives in this thread quite interesting. The broadest spectrum of opinion/perspective certainly seems to have been canvassed on this one.

    I've really enjoyed the debate, sorry to hear it has made some grumpy.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2007 • 269 posts Report Reply

  • Sue,

    I will tell everyone one thing
    in wellington it is cheaper to buy Tow 1 liter bottles of milk than one 2 liter bottle

    now what is up with that?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 527 posts Report Reply

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