MSD are using pandemic to make money from the poor – why you should hate neoliberal welfare

I'm hopeless.

I have written many posts highly critical of the culture of MSD.

Their malice, their spite, their abuse of power over the most vulnerable.

This latest story manages to sum up all that is wrong with MSD, they are lending money to the poorest people to buy essentials.

How corrupt is that as a social policy…

Beneficiaries owe record $2.1b to Govt as cost of living soars

Low income New Zealanders now owe more than $2 billion to the Ministry of Social Development as they continue to have to borrow money to survive.

…this is the neoliberal welfare industry for you.

The madness is that MSD sees this debt as an asset!

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They have a vested interest in loading more debt up on beneficiaries! We have loaded up billions in debt to the poorest amongst us creating debt slaves.

The state are acting like a drug dealer peddling desperation and entrapping people into literal debt coffins.

This is all fine according to Labour.

Wipe the debt now.

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  1. I would like those that are quick to condemn National for past sins (quite rightly in some cases ) to say what they think of this article.

    • It’s still Nationals 9 years if neglect don’t you know?
      Everything’s gotten much worse under Labour but it’s still 9 years of neglect.
      However once National get in, it will immediately be Nationals fault with not a single mention about Labour.

    • Old Pullya Bennefit did a right job of making sure anybody who followed her example through the system stopped being able to follow. Everything that she benefited from disappeared.
      Along comes Labour, full of promises but all they have done is a review and then sat on it. Winter energy payment might be great if you live way up north but winter lasts a hell of alot longer down here in the deep south, the short period that payment occurs doesnt really cover it. and the extra 20 bucks handed out disappeared because MSD saw fit to remove 20 bucks from other things beneficiaries were getting.
      Me, Im sitting here unemployed with a disability preventing me from working but I dont qualify for a benefit. The rate a partner used to be able to earn was $56k a year but Labour came along and reduced that to $46k a year, with inflation one would expect that rate to increase rather than decrease.
      Labour is just all talk while actually making beneficiaries lives better regardless of reviews.
      The kick on the guts happened when covid hit and Labour decided to create a special benefit for middle class people, cant have them having a reduced level of income that would affect their standard of living Labour said so they got a benefit worth twice a standard unemployment benefit and kept going on about that extra 20 bucks the real unemployed got.
      Labour is no different to National or any of the other parties, all they care about is themselves and the wellbeing of those already well off.

  2. Without trying to under estimate the enormous struggle to survive on a benefit we must be aware that penalties are normally imposed only when false declarations have been made to receive benefits, or MSD have not been informed of changed circumstances. Also emergency food grants do not have to be repayed but have an annual limit.

    • so why not just increase benefits across the board by the annual loan limit?….because constantly harrying people for payment gives MSD workers their jollies..they’re just a payday loans company,

      • gagarin, would you then have an additional emergency grant for those that still can’t manage? The sad truth is you could give some people a $1000/wk and they would still run out of money for food. I’m not sure what the solution is but I know that just increasing benefits without providing wrap around support will not solve the problem.

        • if they acknowledge emergency loans (lets call them what they actually are) are neccesary up to certain level, that’s an open admission that benefits are NOT adiquate…if they were loans would not be necessary.

          the only ones unable to live on 1000 a week are the poverty pleading constantly bleating bourgeoise property speculators.

          though the lack of a proper ‘social services dept’ in NZ and the reliance on a patchwork of charity provision needs fixing…charity should be the cherry on the top not the primary providers….every charity dollar equals a failure of government…so yup wrararound services sorely needed.

          • Joseph, providing guidance on such things as budgeting, cooking simple meals, making wise choices such as no smokes and limit alcohol, quality child care for working parents, and providing affordable housing so as welfare payments don’t just make private landlords rich.

            • OT part of the medical department and WINZ being connected to both, disability services being integrated with conduits to social housing providers would be a start joseph…
              separate depts who don’t talk encourages cases to fall through the gaps….it actually encourages it.

        • I agree Peter Kelly and that is the fallback theme for the Lab Party (where they try out policies on the chronically ilI, I mean poor,will be shrinking them and sleeping over a bunsen burner in winter). But food stamps would do a lot to help, just for food, not wine and cigarettes as that is where the stressed mind gets bogged down, in addictions. Ane small pockets of state housing sited near where people’s needs are – families near schools and local doctors. A visiting van with fit visiting nurses in it to help with wounds, skin problems etc and help stop people going feral. Additionally a kidnapping of a superior being in the power mob sicj as a social welfare chief operative would be held all night in a place with thin walls next to a person or bunch who want their freedom plus everyone else’s for miles around to play loud music, curse and thump till 4 a.m.

    • BS.

      They take whatever they want because they can.
      Food grants after people have exceeded their $200 limit per year.

      Doctors’ visit costs are ‘recoverable’.

      Power costs are recoverable too.

      Any cost that is claimed by a beneficiary is recoverable.
      That’s why the total debt mountain is more than $2b.

      And add to that motel costs. These people will be in debt for a lifetime.

      Jobs are none existent for most of these people because employers won’t touch them because of their unstable living arrangements which employers consider a high risk to their business. Because if they move location or are relocated to live under a bridge somewhere.

      This whole welfare system is designed to keep generations of people in need of a $25b monster organisation.

  3. Let’s just please trust Minister Sepuloni. She’s one of Labour’s kindest and most accomplished performers. Right up there with David Clark and Poto Wolliams. MSD is in good hands.

    • if I thought she was smart enough to be evil that would be one thing but she’s just a very dim bulb with 2nd hand ideas.

  4. It’s that underbelly that will prevail for many generations to come.

    27,000 people living in motels.
    Add OT and its dysfunctional organisation, will only lead to a steady stream of full prisons at $150k per prisoner a year. LINOs muddle class persecution of people not like them, that don’t think like them and are definitely not likely to be as privileged as them.

    Labours intergenerational investment in poverty, and oppression of year’s to come.

    It’s time they were resigned from the government because they’re useless.

    • but the neolib and right wing ‘mad max’ fetishists should understand the poor maori and poor bogan mob will be banging on their doors….and being woke or libertarian won’t cut the mustard then….you’ll get to see what real libertarianism means from the roof of your burning gated hidey-hole

  5. As I said before. New Zealand already has asset, wealth, capital gains and inheritance taxes. They just apply to WINZ clients

  6. The food grants need to be increased (no loans not for food only essential stuff like a fridge etc) to cope with the increasing costs of living. MSD ain’t the only evil ministry many of our government departments are toxic and they tend to play staff off.


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