Government needs to stop the madness of “business as usual” in state and council bodies planning layoffs


An urgent priority of the new government is to end the madness of business as usual in state or local government controlled bodies.

Decades of following a fundamentally wrong free-market and privatised agenda has led to massive underinvestment in health, education, transport, drainage. The environment has become deeply degraded. The money being printed is needed for these sectors to do a massive repair job.
Instead we see a universal madness being adopted as university after university.  council after council and transport agencies and health boards are announcing massive layoffs to meet their reduced post-covid budgets.
The universities are a great example. They were instructed to sell themselves to private students from  overseas. Over the last 15 years there has been a massive increase in numbers so they now get around 15% of their income from private students. This was not used to expand access to NZ students access however since those numbers stagnated. Instead it was used to cut spending in real terms for the sector.
Now all universities need a boost of income from the government to compensate for the lost overseas student income. Instead they are implementing cuts to jobs and services.
This is nuts – it has to stop.


  1. Unfortunately Grant has pissed all the money against the wall helping struggling businesses such as Fletchers, The Warehouse and PWC. The lunacy of the method of the wage subsidy will have reverberations such as the above for decades to come.

    • Yet Briscoes are paying back 11.5m wage subsidy such was the efficiency of the wage subsidy method. The businesses that leached from the wage subsidy knowing full well they were stealing you dont want to call out?
      You blame Grant for this? And yet the righteous right talk of the lazy beneficiaries.

      It appears it is only you that wants to deny good businesses and employees a chance to stay above sea level.

      • Oh those companies that were/are trading insolvent and claimed the subsidy can go to hell. That’s yet another shit result of Grant’s big piss up – thanks for highlighting it.

        Yes I blame Grant for this. We have a major infrastructure deficit in this country Imagine an extra 30 billion for this. New hospitals, new school blocks, bus lanes, roads (I know you hate these)…..

    • Frank the Tank,

      Even with your obvious impediments, you appreciate that at the level 4 lockdown, the businesses you quoted were all entitled to the wage subsidy? You’d also appreciate the urgent need at the time to get the $$ out to people as quickly as possible?

      You will also know that unscrupulous greedy bastards out there are always looking to exploit any situation they can.

      Taking the above into consideration, why would any eggplants say Grant Robertson pissed the wage subsidy funds up against the wall? Methinks they have been listening to Chucky far too much.

      Now, be a good lad and give yourself an uppercut, then apologize to Grant.

      • I love when you address me like that.

        In response:

        I never and never will agree with the original L4 lockdown. Our family business should have been able to continue to operate on a contactless basis and would have been far more safe than a supermarket. On that basis we wouldn’t have needed nor qualified for any assistance.

        If we had been prudent with business support than we would probably have 30 billion to fund our infrastructure deficit. New hospitals, classrooms, wasterwater, water storage, public transport etc.

        Now your beloved leader nor Grant can even tell us how their light rail brainfart is going to get funded.

  2. I usually agree with you Mike, but I disagree on this one.

    Universities have become bloated organisations that have been teaching crap -like orthodox economics, tourism etc. because there was money to be made out of teaching crap. Now there isn’t, so the universities have to downsize. And start teaching worthwhile life skills instead of redundant nonsense.

    It’s much the same with councils, which became bloated organisations that sucked money out of the communities they were supposed to be serving and squandered it bith on salaries and idiotic projects that bolstered the CVs of empire-builders but did nothing for the communities, other than load them with white elephants.

    The knife needs to be taken to all such organisations and a focus placed on the real world and its many predicaments. Currently the is more dead wood than alive.

    It used to be said: “If you can’t get a real job, get one at the council.”

    They are ‘holiday camps’, with poor performance and no accountability.

    Yes, end BAU because it’s ‘killing the planet’ and destroying our life-support systems.

  3. The proposition Labour talked about before the last election and forming of a post election Coalition, was to make tertiary education free for at least the first three years thereby catching up with countries like Cuba, Norway. Sweden, Finland, Germany, France, Denmark, Singapore, Ireland and many others who fund undergraduate fees with significant subsidies.
    At least 24 countries are listed as having free tertiary education for citizens and many also extend free or very low cost options for foreigners.
    In the 1960 University fees in NZ were minimal then came neoliberalism and the “user pays” harvesting of cash so the rich corporates could have tax cuts.

  4. You are talking about the Labour Government right, Mike?
    You know, the same political party that all unions are affiliated to right?
    Will those representative union organisations fight their political opponents or yeild?
    As most of the bigger unions have done over the passed 30 years or more, they’ve taken the hit and have left their members out hang in the chilli breeze to dry.
    Guess what? Theyve already given up. 369,000 unemployed now with another 95,000 to sign on shortly when the subsidy runs out.
    Than what? Austerity MK11?
    Or more free photo ops for peeps to feel good, maybe?


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