As TDB has been pointing out since the pandemic erupted, Labour’s cowardly failure to reform the toxic culture inside WINZ will come back to bite Labour in the arse as Kiwi’s who have never interacted with the malice of WINZ come into contact for the first time and are horrified at the spitefulness of WINZ…
A Canterbury man who cannot find work or access a benefit says he is part of a growing group of New Zealanders whose unemployment is hidden from any official figures.
…this is fast going to become a political problem for Labour.
Now condescending Woke wing Twitter warriors will laugh and say, “welcome to what brown people and poor people have had to tolerate for decades cracker”
And while that’s an immensely fun game to play, it misses the threat to the Government.
If National can pretend to give two shits about Police abuse of power they way they did with the Level 2 Lockdown law, then they can also pretend to care about the newly unemployed facing a cruel empire that National themselves helped build.
Labour are gutless when it comes to WINZ for two reasons.
The first is political, the second is political.
The first reason Labour are cowards when it comes to reforming WINZ is because decades of bashing beneficiaries means the average Kiwi has been trained to hate beneficiaries with the kind of zeal Nazi’s show when burning books. 35 years of the neoliberal experiment have robbed most workers from having union representation and this has seen our wages fall further and further behind Australia. Those working people look at the pittance they get paid each week and compare it to the welfare cheque with envy. That resentment is easy for politicians to whip into spite for political advantage and it is such an advantage that Labour are too scared of getting on the wrong side of, that’s why they have done very little to actually make beneficiaries lives better.
The second reason Labour are cowards when it comes to reforming WINZ is because they know the toxicity is so deeply rotted to the core that only wholesale sacking of most staff could cure it and Labour are too spineless to face off against the Wellington Unions to do that.
WINZ is a neoliberal welfare agency whose main concern is to say no to as many beneficiaries as possible. It is purposely obtuse, it lies to beneficiaries, it manipulates beneficiaries, it punishes beneficiaries and it uses extraordinarily intrusive surveillance into their lives to catch them out in ‘relationships’ which they then criminalise.
The application for the dole is 70 pages long.
That’s an application for a group of people who have large literacy problems.
WINZ is a stick to beat the poor with, it is purposely designed that way.
That’s fine and dandy to NZers when that stick is believed to be aimed at Maori, Pacifica, the young and the poor, but when it’s aimed at decent hard working white volk, all political hell is going to break lose.
More and mote of these ‘decent hard working white volk’ stories will start exploding on social media as the newly unemployed who’ve luckily never had to ever interact with WINZ are exposed to the exhilarating sadism of WNZ staff who will gleefully do what they are trained to do, find a reason to decline welfare.
Those WINZ maggots for decades have lied to beneficiaries about not being eligible for welfare until their redundancies run out, they are a broken organisation whose burnt out staff are too toxic to do anything closely resembling good any longer.
If Labour doesn’t reform WINZ soon, the legacy of it as a neoliberal welfare weapon against the poor will end up negatively impacting Labour, not National.
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