Sunday, 10 May 2009

Health & education spending cut back

Why is this not a surprise:

Proposed spending increases in health and education by the Labour government are likely to be axed in the Budget.

[snip]

Finance Minister Bill English said the figures and the revenue outlook meant National could not proceed with Labour's proposed spending in its May 28 Budget.

"We've had to scale back the undertakings made by the previous government," English said.

"They had allocated some quite large spending increases for this Budget. They won't be able to happen now because there is less revenue.

"But we will still be spending more on public services."

In 2008, Labour added $3b in spending during the 2009-10 financial year on to the Government's books, much of it on social services such as health, community services and education.

The spending increases, outlined in the 2008 Budget but now likely to be scaled back, include $750m more for health, $591m over four years for tertiary education, $182m for school operations funding, $446m for community service non-governmental organisations and $180m for police. (1)

This is only the start of it, of course. THe credit crunch must be a libertarian wet dream. Expect further hysterical cut backs in public spending, justified in with hysterical references to 'balancing the books' and 'preserving fiscal integrity' or what have you. At the same time, there will be further tax cuts - justified by claims that this will somehow 'stimulate the economy' and will 'encourage enterprise and investment.' Never mind that this has never been shown to happen anywhere in the world, ever (2).

What we're seeing is the seeding of the next ten or twenty years social problems. As public spending gets gut back, and the already struggling are pushed further into poverty by the demented application of failed libertarian policies, we'll see another sharp rise in the statistics which New Zealand's already leading the world in - suicide, child abuse, domestic violence, alcoholism, drug use, prison population, familial breakdown and so on. The freemarket goons, blinded by their ideology (I'm being kind here and assuming they actually believe the tripe they spout and aren't just lying to give their behaviour a veneer of acceptability) will find ways to blame the victims, denouncing the 'benefits junkies' and 'immorality and indivduality sresulting from politically correct social engineering' and the like. They'll call for more of the same.

And, unfortunately, they'll get their way long enough to do real, terrible damage to the most vulnerable people in society - children. And the consequences created by their ideologically driven social vandalism will be around for a very long time.
1 - 'Labour Budget pledges face axe,' by Colin Espiner, published in The Press, 7th of May, 2009. Reproduced on stuff.co.nz (http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/2390322/Labour-Budget-pledges-face-axe)
2 - Don't quote me on the "never ... anywhere ... ever" bit. I just kinda made that up. But I await evidence to the contrary with anticipation.

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