Remember the long-overdue tax cuts that our Dear Leader gave his doting followers? That’s right, the tax cuts that were entirely affordable as long as we borrowed more money, cut needless “bureaucracy” and sold a few bits and pieces we had lying around doing very little other than generating electricity. Most people agree that increasing government debt is a bad thing and the sale of assets is, at best, stupid; but what about the other “saving”? Surely disestablishing a few of those overpaid and under worked bureaucrats is OK?
Or is it?
The report on the Pike River mining disaster has just come out, and it seems that the deaths of 29 men are the result of a failure by the “government’s labour service, which should have stopped mining until the safety risks could be properly managed through adequate systems.
The department “assumed” Pike River was complying with the law despite “ample evidence to the contrary”. Much of the reason for that assumption lay in the progressive decline in the resourcing and capacity of its mining inspectorate.”
This is on the back of teachers not getting paid, meaning that “schools are paying teachers out of their own operations funding after ongoing problems with the Education Ministry’s new payroll system”.
In March this year I had a hip replacement that resulted in me being readmitted to hospital and I was staggered by what I saw. The staff all seemed to operate in varying levels of confusion and I got moved around several times before ending up right beside where I started, nearly had the the maximum dose of the same drug (Paracetamol) administered twice in around half an hour and was assured every hour or so for nearly a day that my fairly serious problem was “next on the list” before I was finally told by a bewildered nurse that there was no record of my requests. I did some digging and it turned out that the medical staff were now also managing most of the admin and paperwork as well as trying to do their proper jobs, and as the stressed looking nurse assured me. “I am useless at that stuff and hate it”.
It seems that those fat, lazy bureaucrats that our esteemed leaders removed from the trough of our (ridiculously high) taxes were the people who kept things running smoothly for the hospital staff so they could focus on fixing people up. And that those meddling and petty inspectors that were stopping the coal companies from making money by demanding safety inspections, or that the slick and highly profitable payroll company was profitable because it didn’t waste valuable time making sure everything ran perfectly – hell, if those teachers can’t survive without regular pay it’s just a sign that they are bad money managers.
Looks like those tax cuts we have been enjoying since Rogernomics are a lot more trouble than they were worth.
- Do Tax Cuts Stimulate the Economy? (economistsview.typepad.com)
- Pike health and safety staff under scrutiny (radionz.co.nz)
- New Zealand not for sale