Interest on Student Loans

November 12th, 2009 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The ODT reports:

The Government needs to consider adding “a little bit of interest” to student loans to ensure it has enough money to better fund universities, University of Otago vice-chancellor Sir David Skegg says.

And he is right. Of course it won’t happen, as National promised not to reverse the policy, but logically interest should be charged at least at the rate of inflation – maintaining the value of the loan in real terms.

Prof Skegg said the “massive cost” of meant little money was available for other forms of tertiary funding.

Yep – that’s it for this generation. The bribe was so huge it chewed up all the disposable money. Without it, one would have a decent chance at abolishing parental means testing but that is off the table for at least a decade also.

The university council yesterday adopted a string of fee and levy increases for most students next year, and introduced a capital development levy of $50 to help fund improvements to student social facilities such as the University Union building.

Otago University Students Association (OUSA) president Edwin Darlow “somewhat reluctantly” supported the increases, which will add $190 to $600 to most Dunedin students’ bills next year.

The other student representative on the council, Simon Wilson, opposed the increases, saying they would lead to students increasing their loans.

The capital development levy was “essentially just an additional charge on students” because the university was unable to increase tuition fees beyond the level allowed by legislation, he said.

Prof Skegg agreed.

The problem is the silly fees maxima policy. The Government is controlling both the amount of funding from the Government, and the amount a university can charge in tuition fees. Of course it will end in tears – or with universities finding a way around it. It was one of the stupider policies of Labour and should not be continued by National.

National promised not to charge interest on student loans, and that promise should be respected. But it promise on the fees maxima was simply “Retain restrictions on the amount by which institutions are able to annually increase fees for publicly funded courses” which allows the Government to increase the amount institutions can charge, while still having some restrictions.

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74 Responses to “Interest on Student Loans”

  1. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    There should be a small interest rate for new borrowers, but there ought to be some recognition of the amount of interest already paid for loans that go back to the early days of the scheme where the interest was higher. I’ve certainly paid back more than I ever borrowed, and still more to go, thanks to the interest that racked up back in the day.

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  2. bevanjs (34 comments) says:

    Perhaps bulk fund Universities in some manner, then perhaps they’ll get a little more selective about who they put resources into educating.
    Loads of taxpayer money goes down the tube as some students find themselves. I suspect the amount of money would stagger us.
    I don’t recall exactly but the fees paid by students are something like 10% of the total cost.

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  3. Rick Rowling (813 comments) says:

    It should never have been called “interest-free student loans”.

    But then “interest-paid-for-by-other-people student loans” wouldn’t have been as good a vote-winner.

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  4. Rich Prick (1,705 comments) says:

    Lets not forget that the taxpayer loses on inflation too. Its worse than just “free” money, the borrowers get to pay it back in future monetary’s worth.

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  5. Jcw (95 comments) says:

    At the very least interest should be charged on the living costs portion of the student loan. Everybody who goes to uni can get $160 every week interest free. Its common practice to place this money in a savings account and make money off the taxpayer.

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  6. dime (9,972 comments) says:

    i HATE interest free loans with all my heart.

    i paid a tonne of interest from day 1! i pay the loan back and now i get to keep paying 38% tax so i can fund the new generation.

    i got fucked big time.

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  7. Chthoniid (2,047 comments) says:

    It’s ending in tears.

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  8. MikeNZ (3,234 comments) says:

    Shame.

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  9. big bruv (13,904 comments) says:

    Hell no….Neville would never break a promise to student bludgers.

    Tax payers…..well that is an entirely different story, the bastard is more than happy to keep telling blatant lies to us.

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  10. Jeff83 (745 comments) says:

    I love the generation complaining about ‘interest free’ loans who went to uni for free and came out with no loan, got to move on with life and now are to get through those who are getting an “amazing” deal of “interest free” loans to study and live no questions asked super at 65. Yip awesome.

    Said it before, you can have your interest bearing loans if your greedy baby boomer generation pays its own super. Till that day you can take it and shove it.

    To those in their 30s who got the worse of both worlds (interest bearing etc) you have my sympothy. On the plus side many of that gen get the ill advised working for the families which is bad policy.

    And JCW I wouldnt say it doesnt happen but its hardly common practice. Allot less common practice than abusing trusts to structure ones taxes, which is again abused by the baby boomer population. However I wouldnt say your idea is without merit.

    A better solution would be introducing a time limit. It would encourage repayment.

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  11. Manolo (13,780 comments) says:

    “National promised not to charge interest on student loans, and that promise should be respected”

    Why? National also promised two rounds of tax cuts and we saw the second part being scrapped.

    Are we also saddled with Working For Families because Key and English don’t have the courage to abolish middle-class welfare programs? The longer these “benefits” last, the more expensive for the rest of us, the more entrenched they become in the minds of the beneficiaries, making their removal increasingly difficult.

    What it’s needed is the political will and desire to advance our country to make the hard calls. Unfortunately, the spineless leaders of today’s National Party are the wrong people for the job.

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  12. rolla_fxgt (311 comments) says:

    But the argument Skeggs was making is that the govt should charge interest, and then give this interest to the unis to fund them. Skeggs of course forgets that most students while they’re studying can’t afford to pay them back, hence why they borrow in the first place, meaning that he still wouldn’t get the money he wants for years and years.
    I’m not against interest when your out in the workforce, but Skeggs fails in the logic of his argument.

    To think he’s the Vice-Chancellor of one of our uni’s, guess his failure at logic shows why our education system is in such a bad state.

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  13. Rhino (19 comments) says:

    It would be really good to see a graph of how much interest free loans has distorted the amount being borrowed is that sort of info available?
    I actually believe that of the Clark legacy this is the worst because it actively encourages students to rip the rest of society off by borrowing money for a purpose other than what it is meant to be borrowed for.
    Essentially it is the same as so many other rorts out there in the NZ tax system to avoid paying tax, like the “o shit im earning above the 38% threshold so suddenly my company, or my kids, or my trust, or my spouse, or my dog is earning this money and can pay my share of the tax at 33 or 30%”.

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  14. tristanb (1,127 comments) says:

    Student loans aren’t the real problem. Sure it’s a bit of technically free money the longer you leave it, but it’s 10% coming off your income for the duration it exists. It provides a balance between making university accessible to anyone, and also giving some responsibility to the person studying.

    The problem is student allowances. These give a free ride to anyone over 25, or who knows how to hide their parents’ income well. Millionaire farmers (with “no net income”), NZ citizens whose earning parent lives overseas, business owners, and just plain old-fashioned liars will get their children a weekly some more hefty than the SL – and one that doesn’t need to be paid back.

    Providing interest-free loans to those who remain in the country gives incentive to stay and work in NZ, hopefully settling (getting stuck) here with a partner and then kids. In general these people will actually look after their kids and help NZ become a little bit better.

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  15. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    It would be really good to see a graph of how much interest free loans has distorted the amount being borrowed is that sort of info available?

    Thought i’d try that new(?) government website http://www.data.co.nz. Typed ‘student loans into the search box’, and get this: http://www.data.govt.nz/dataset/show/605.

    Clicked ‘student loans’, clicked ‘Jan-Dec (Calendar year) Statistics’, which gets us this:
    http://www.studylink.govt.nz/about-studylink/statistics/student-loan-ytd-12.html

    Looking at ‘living costs’ (Not much point looking at ‘average fees’ in this case as that’s what people are ‘meant’ to borrow for), the average amount has remained pretty much static (up $28 / year) since 2006 when ‘interest free’ was implemented. So students aren’t borrowing more?

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  16. Captain Neurotic (203 comments) says:

    I myself as a student am disgusted to see how many people I know who have raked up huge loans by completing token BA degrees who next year are either going to do a postgrad or work on a farm or go overseas. Very little of them have any intention to repay their loan within the next 15 years and they have fuck all incentive to do so thanks to Lairbore!!!

    I have a few friends who are now considering getting a trade, good on them, however they have huge loans and it will be years until they are contributing to the economy – they were pressured to go to uni when they didn’t want to as they had always wanted to be sparkies!

    My biggest issue is the amount of people who treat uni as a past time hobby with no financial condiseration – and will not give back to society for years to come.

    University should be restrictive to who they allow, not based on parents income or status, but rather academic skill and rapport from school.

    We need to change the attitude that university is not for everybody and that if you choose/shoe the potential to attend then you must face the reliaty of the cost at the end!

    I believe that everybody, regardless of their social or economic backgroung, should have the oppotunity to education but this is being abused abd encouraged by the previously government!

    Whilst i know it would be better for me to save my money and gain interest on it – rather i plan to pay off my loan within the next five years. I have treated everypaper in monetary value, planned my degrees accordingly and now will join the workforce at a decent wage.

    That’s my rant – the argument may be a little disjointed, but the principles are there!

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  17. Chthoniid (2,047 comments) says:

    The problem with getting students “free” education like the past is that you would need to wind back Universities costs to also match that in the past.

    That means you don’t get lecture notes on powerpoint presentations, you would copy them off the blackboard as the lecturer wrote them down. Forget email or web-access to the library and other databases. Science labs would have the technology of the 80s. No chance you would learn how to map a genome. We’d teach you how to use a spreadsheet with the original Lotus program. Forecasting and modelling would be taught by hand, using matrices.

    It also means you have to find some way to reduce participation rates at University.

    In short, the rapid increase in tertiary education costs is partly a result of much higher participation rates, and partly driven by tertiary institutions keeping up with scientific and technological advances- to make education relevant to students. Somehow that has to be paid for.

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  18. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    Perhaps we should stop funding BA’s in gender studies, languages, Bachelor’s of Maori and Pacific Development etc etc.

    Just a thought.

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  19. Tauhei Notts (1,714 comments) says:

    Interest free student loans was the dumbest election bribe that I have ever seen. It enhances the bludge mentality of New Zealanders. It also points out how economically naive so many New Zealanders are. No wonder so many dodgy finance companies got so much unsecured debenture funding.
    Captain Neurotic says he will pay his student loan off as quickly as possible. He shows enough naivity to qualify as a Labour Party member. Interest free debt is the last thing one pays off. To do otherwise is plain stupid.
    Several years ago, as part of the interview process I asked about applicants’ student loans. Anybody who had worked their guts out to pay off their loan went to the top of the queue. They were obviously dinkum hard workers.
    Nowadays I still ask applicants about their student loans. Anybody who has worked their guts out to pay off their student loan is too dumb to work at my place.
    That is the incredibly silly system put in place by that unscrupulous person Michael Cullen.

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  20. TomYum (23 comments) says:

    Sir David’s recent pay increase of $70,000 is the equivalent to the new building levy from 1400 students.

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  21. vibenna (305 comments) says:

    The New Zealand university system is very good. It has five universities in the Shanghai Jiao Tong top 500 rankings, and six in the top 500 in the Times Higher Education Supplement rankings. That compares extremely well internationally.

    However, the three big science universities with the strongest international reputations – Auckland, Otago and Massey – have all been slipping down the Times Higher rankings for four years now. So the relative decline is quite clear.

    I not sure that allowing our most respected universities to decline is good economic policy.

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  22. Captain Neurotic (203 comments) says:

    Tauhei Notts (520) Vote: Add rating 1 Subtract rating 0 Says:
    November 12th, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    “Captain Neurotic says he will pay his student loan off as quickly as possible. He shows enough naivity to qualify as a Labour Party member”

    I understand exactly what you are saying – But i have a moral dilemma between: Knowing I can move to England with my skills, earn a shite load more with less tax (can use a trust fund with gifting money for maximum results) and hold off paying my loan apart from the small compulsory payments and…. the principles of loyalty to NZ and the economy, working hard and doing what is right.

    I am also disgusted that I know even if i do take the latter position, 99% percent of people in my per group won’t so what is the f%^&king point?!

    Perhaps i need to disgard to sense of moral duty….

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  23. unaha-closp (1,165 comments) says:

    National promised not to charge interest on student loans, and that promise should be respected.

    Easy solution, adopt sharia.

    The loans won’t be charging interest, because any fees that may resemble interest in any way will be declared not interest by law.

    There are a few Pros and Cons to this of course:

    Cons:

    Womens loans will have to paid over to the student’s father or husband.
    Jewish students shall be subject to forfeiture of any degree not held previous to 1947.

    Pros:

    The obvious one being financial benefit to the education sytem.
    Honest John Key keeps his word.
    VUWSA protest against ‘interest’ payments seen as islamophobic racism and subject to possible jihad.

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  24. Chthoniid (2,047 comments) says:

    @nickb

    Perhaps we should stop funding BA’s in gender studies, languages, Bachelor’s of Maori and Pacific Development etc etc.

    Just a thought.

    A lot of these programs don’t have very many students however, and the BA is the cheapest degree to teach. You don’t need expensive software to keep your business or IT graduates in front of the technology curve. You don’t need to establish and support a lab system with it’s chemicals, instruments and specialised support staff. Note that a lot of universities have also taken a cost-hit with the need to update science labs to keep up with latest health-and-safety regulations. Labs built in the 70s and 80s aren’t necessarily ‘up to code’ anymore.

    All this makes the old BA quite cheap to teach, and if you dig a bit deeper into funding within a ‘varsity, you’d probably find a degree of cross-subsidisation of arts and business degrees to the science degrees anyway.

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  25. Steve (4,563 comments) says:

    Chthoniid@3.47,
    You mean Students would have to take notes, pay attention and learn?
    Instead of having it all handed out so they can study at the beach?
    Hahahaha! We are dealing with the “I want” brigade here.

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  26. PaulL (5,981 comments) says:

    Wah wah wah.

    Back in the day it used to be Grandpa who had to walk uphill to school through the snow with no shoes on. Then uphill in the snow all the way home again at the end of the day.

    Nowadays, it’s today’s students bitching about how hard they have it, not like in the easy days when everyone else went to university.

    Student loans have been around for nearly 20 years now. Universal student loans have been gone for about 20 years. I sure as hell paid fees, and I sure as hell had a loan. And I worked 2 part time jobs during term time + every summer holidays, and minimised the size of that loan. And I paid it off when I started working. How hard is this? What is so hard now that this isn’t possible (other than the Labour govt pricing you out of jobs by pushing up youth rates of pay).

    As for Jeff83 “when the wrinklies give up their super, I’ll give up my interest free student loan.” Mate, you’re part of the problem, not part of the solution. You’re happy to admit that working for families is flat out bad policy, why the reluctance to admit that interest free (everyone else in the country pays) student loans are also bad policy. As is non-means-tested super, as is a locked in retirement age and very high payment rate. Two wrongs do not make a right, and it would be fair to say that someone who has planned their retirement around the existing regime is probably going to take longer to make an adjustment than someone who got given interest free loans as an election bribe a few years ago.

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  27. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    According to a report last week 114000 student loans are currently i9n default. Many thousands had gone oversea’s and were not paying and the bill is some 10 billion.
    That’s 10 billion taken from taxpayers who have no say in the matter. That’s a 10 billion drag on the economy. How can anyone justify that?
    Maybe if the Govt’s fo both socialist persuasions stopped stealing from tax payers and companies much more sponsorship and self funded money would be available. I mean cockies kids have been subsidized for bloody years (Blenglish included) by rorting the tax system and look at the resultant brain dead lot w\that have inherited parliament.
    These same people are now busy trying to find new ways to tax us after slimming out on our tax cuts. Carbon taxes, capital gains taxes. land taxes. and no doubt others we haven’t heard about yet.
    They just don’t get it. Stop spending other peoples money on someone else.
    Reduce taxes and allow us our own philanthropy.

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  28. Steve (4,563 comments) says:

    topherthegreat@ 6.20pm.
    When it is holiday time you go home to Mum and Dad, theres $2500 for doing nothing lol!

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  29. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    education is not a privilege, it’s a right.

    Obviously you’re a recent graduate of NZ’s university system, given that you have been inculcated with the idea that you have a right to every one else’s money.

    Tell me this. Why should the money a parent earns, and that he might want to use educating his own offspring, be forcibly taken from him and used to educate the offpsring of another parent? In what barbaric and corrupt system is this kind of theft regarded as morally acceptable?

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  30. PaulL (5,981 comments) says:

    topherthegreat: basic education may be a right. Tertiary education is not a right, and there is absolutely no reason to think that the individual getting the education shouldn’t shoulder at least 10% of the cost.

    An apprentice earning about $20K per annum is paying taxes so as to provide your tertiary education, so that you can earn more than them once you graduate. Is that fair?

    My view is that there is both public and private benefit that accrues from education. I reckon about 30% public benefit, and about 70% private benefit. But I’ll be generous and suggest that the taxpayer should go 50/50 on the fees with you. You’re getting a bargain at 90/10, and with the government also underwriting the loan for your 10% share.

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  31. Elijah Lineberry (306 comments) says:

    The main issue here is the ‘need’ for a University education.

    In the last three decades the standards have fallen dramatically – lowered and lowered and lowered (so the Maoris could pass exams) to the point where a BA today is similar to being in Form 2 back in the 1970s; a PhD is similar to School Cert circa. 1977

    As degrees are quite useless in the scheme of things (a University degree and $3-20 will buy you a cup of tea) it shows how moronic all these students are to bother getting one and borrowing vast sums of money to do so.

    http://www.nightcitytrader.blogspot.com

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  32. Elijah Lineberry (306 comments) says:

    Of course I believe that.

    I realise you are young and naive, Topher, but you are been well and truly taken for a ride by the University and others and simply wasting years of your life (which could be spent doing something productive) at University where you are doing little more than lining pockets of that University.

    You and thousands like you were made for the famous comment “Never give a sucker an even break”

    http://www.nightcitytrader.blogspot.com

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  33. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “you don’t that it’s better that we create a society where we can all help each other out?”

    I think you bastards who steal other people’s money should be hung from the lamp posts.

    You are destroyers of democracy and amoral parasites.

    You want other people to give you their money then persuade them to do so.

    Using legislation introduced by yellow backed crawling vote buying power obsessed politicians to force other people to cough up their hard earned cash is a fucking crime, and you are a communist swine who has no business living in NZ.

    Fuck off to North Korea, they love people like you there.

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  34. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    Hey moron- you are building a society that will without a doubt collapse into fascism and totalitarianism. Try and see a bit further than the cash for your next party pill.

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  35. PaulL (5,981 comments) says:

    topherthegreat: seems to me that you still have some living and learning to do.

    I think Elijah is talking about the general dumbing down of our universities, and the way that so many higher degrees are being issued these days. I don’t think he meant literally that what you learned in a PhD today is the same as what you learned in School C in years gone by.

    It’s interesting that most of the great scientists of the past did their best work in their early twenties, in a pinch (and if they didn’t have children) in their late twenties/early thirties. (Personally I attribute this to having children – once you have children you lose sleep and become useless…).

    In today’s university system, someone in their early twenties is still at University. In fact, most scientists don’t leave until PhD is finished = late twenties. Then, they can understudy someone in some research institute, by the time they’re 35 (if they’re really good) someone might let them loose to do their own research. Of course, by then, all the drive and insight is gone, and they’re a mindless system drone. That is what I think Elijah is getting at – we’ve wrung out the last drop of independence and recklessness long before we’re prepared to give anyone any responsibility at all. It will have to change at some point.

    As for NZ’s “regressive tax system” – sorry, have you looked at our tax brackets. The more your income, the higher percentage of that income you pay in tax. That is fact. I’ll give you that our tax system does a poor job of taxing wealth, but that is a different argument. There is no evidence to support that our tax system is regressive.

    A final point. Easy when you’re a student to claim that everyone is better off funding students, and paying taxes later on in life. We’ll see what you reckon in 10 years time when you’re actually paying those taxes as well as raising a family. And when you’ve seen some of what the govt actually does with your taxes – seriously, if govt is the answer to anything, you’re asking the wrong question. Government should only do something that absolutely cannot be done in any way, shape or form by private organisations. Government is so inefficient and incompetent that they should always be our last resort, not our first.

    No, yet one more final point. When you’re extolling the virtues of our education system, a little attention to grammar and spelling doesn’t go amiss. It is easy for those of us paying for most of your education to think we’re not getting value for money if you can’t even spell….

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  36. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    I can’t believe all this hypocritical crap spouted from very likely the same people who were PAID to go to university prior to user pays. You got all the advantages with none of the costs and now you want US to pay more for your mistakes. You’re neoliberal experiment has ended in fucking tears, people like Redbaiter are nothing more than greedy, amoral, selfish pricks who if given the chance, would be the ones RUNNING North Korea. And it’s the thousands of NZers like him that have reaped the rewards of low interest rates on decadent lifestyles instead of growing jobs.
    People like me are coming out of uni 40 grand in the hole with a piece of paper and no job because of your bullshit fixation with property instead of productive investment. Remember, WE start on the bottom rung of the ladder, it’s YOU fucking PRICKS who were meant to create employment through private sector investment. What did you do instead? Took a 400K loan out and retreated to the burbs with your holden and bloody sweet as job you got when everyone had shit for brains anyway and it was easy as getting laid on K road. What a dick, honestly. If you don’t like our attempts at equality, go to Texas where you belong

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  37. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “all this crazy hating the government, hating the world, hating everyone ideas….. ”

    Typical smearing commie.

    Disagree with your doctrine and you’re a “hater”. An extremist.

    Well, if standing up for individual liberty, and the right of those who earn money to spend that money as they choose, and look after their own families in the first case, and other families when they so choose rather than being forced to at the expense of their own family, then I’m damn proud to be one.

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  38. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    Hey Paul, has it occurred to you that this alleged ‘dumbing down’ of universities (complete and utter … by the way) might in some way be because of the way it has been turned into more of a business than a university. It is by far cheaper for them to give me less face time with my prof. and then squeeze as many bums on seats as they can to make as much money back as they can. Many third and fourth year courses have 100 plus students! Overseas students pay 4 times what I do, if not more, they are getting raped. All this money goes into inflating salaries and buying all that expensive equipment for the scientists who according to you apparently aren’t doing a very good job of it anyway! And your solution is to make me pay interest? I’m guessing you’re one of the aforementioned ‘paid to go to uni’ pieces

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  39. Banana Llama (1,043 comments) says:

    May as well be banging Ajax up your arm if you think civil society is created by a government taxing people to the point of revolt so a privileged few can live off the backs of the masses.

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  40. Captain Neurotic (203 comments) says:

    Topherthegreat – You should campaign for an executive position on a Student’s Association, they believe in the same equal, socialist bullshit that you appear to. Go make your stance using compulsory taxed levies from student’s who have to borrow so much to live.

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  41. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    Redbaiter represents all that’s horrible about humanity. He would rather let a family die in the gutter than pay his fair share to helping them out, just like everyone else. He would say that was their lot in life and they deserved it and that he didn’t because he worked so damn hard to succeed.
    Newsflash, individuality is a myth, when was the last time you did anything entirely for yourself without working off the backs of others, past and present?? I’m not a communist either, I believe in the dynamics of the market, it’s powers of coercion. But the market ain’t suited to everything, it’s primal, like you.

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  42. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “He would rather let a family die in the gutter than pay his fair share to helping them out,”

    You poor narrow one dimensional indoctrinated communist fool. Never heard of charity have you? The concept hasn’t ever entered your crippled little mind has it? All you can ever reach for is force.

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  43. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    Oh yeah how much do you give to charity mate? Charities are already incredibly inefficient, by the time everyone gets a cut it’s pittance. What’s the difference between that and government?? Apart from the fact we all pay tax so it’s fairer.
    If it switched to charity instead of WINZ I just know you’d be one of the people complaining about how you give more than everyone else, about right? thought so

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  44. Banana Llama (1,043 comments) says:

    So it is better to say individualism doesn’t exist therefore we are going to enslave you and steal your labour to give to those who don’t labour.

    Awesome.

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  45. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “Charities are already incredibly inefficient”

    Bullshit, and they’d have to be unbelievably so to ever parallel the waste and neglect and destruction of the socialism you believe in so religiously, and that is not ever “fair”.

    You don’t ever make people better off by making them feel comfortable in poverty.

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  46. getstaffed (9,186 comments) says:

    education is not a privilege, it’s a right. It should be made as easy as possible for people to get, people shouldn’t be burdened with it’s (sic) cost for years after they graduate.

    Cleary for you it’s neither a privilege, nor a right. It’s a struggle. So I can understand the ‘it should be made as easy as possible for people to get’ comment.

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  47. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    You ignorant fool, charities have the same overheads, contracting costs, etc etc…in fact the only difference is ADVERTISING! oh that makes them more efficient does it??? genius. Think about it, WINZ is one giant charity with what is in your view inflated benefits. Go ask someone who works in a charity if they think they could get the same resources…I highly doubt it. People are selfish, as you well know. Same principle with studylink. If anything, these institutions are more efficient because of their scale. You are quibbling about my 160 a week, 150 of that is rent and power. You are quibbling about a poor family getting a few hundred to pay for childcare so they can work, what a joke. You are so naive if you think charities is the answer, typical US conservative crap who think tithes will do all gods work. Do some research

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  48. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    Banana Llama. Typical, no one said that. And enslavement? We must be some of the freeist people financially in the world. You can spend your after tax income on whatever you want, there is no compulsory saving aka singapore or aussie. Tax rates are average if you look at the history of taxation. Actually the way I look at is there are always going to be layabouts better to pay that tiny minority off and give their kids a chance than deal with the increased crime, poverty, and general shitstorm that will occur if we follow your policy to it’s logical conclusion.

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  49. getstaffed (9,186 comments) says:

    You can spend your after tax income on whatever you want

    Indeed, but for me the little problem is the word ‘after’. As in ‘after’ the government of the day has extracted as much of my earnings as humanly possible so as to pay for a widened scope of welfare entitlement thereby gaining additional, willing voters.

    As for policies and their logical conclusion, are welfare levels since 1970 and the crime rates over the same period correlated, or anti-correlated?

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  50. Banana Llama (1,043 comments) says:

    When you tax someone you take their labour and give it to another individual just like you would if you owned a slave and you think we are financially free? people living in a basic barter society are more free than we will ever be, you don’t even get a pay check without the government taking their cut first not to mention the historic levels of debt from following a policy of appeasing minority’s.

    If you are worried about a shitstorm look no further than the present.

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  51. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “If anything, these institutions are more efficient because of their scale.”

    They are corrupt crumbling edifices that prove to anyone not brain fucked by socialist dogma just what a disastorous destructive force socialism is.

    “with the increased crime, poverty, and general shitstorm that will occur if we follow your policy to it’s logical conclusion.”

    Funny then, that whereever western countries are run by commie goons like you, crime is at its highest-

    http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/cri_tot_cri_percap-crime-total-crimes-per-capita

    While in Indonesia, (for example) where there is dire poverty, but little welfare, crime hardly even features as a social measure.

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  52. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    Haha correlation doesn’t necessarily mean causation now does it? I think you’ll find there are many equally relevant correlations. It doesn’t disprove anything.
    I mean shit, I’d love it if there were more entrepreneurs out there, but I’m not willing to get rid of my safety net just so you can pay a few less cents on the dollar. I agree more should be done to encourage it, but it’s the blatant hatred you have for people having a hard time on low incomes and/or the dole that should piss a lot of people off. Oh wait, wrong blog

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  53. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    ” it’s the blatant hatred you have for people having a hard time on low incomes”

    You can’t ever argue on the facts you commies. You always have to try and destroy your opposition with lies smears and false allegations. Want to do things differently to the Progressives, you’re automatically an evil uncaring monster. Straight from the Joe Stalin book on false accusations, midnight arrests, kangaroo courts, stacked juries, bribed judges and banishment to the gulags. Same old same old all time favourite commie strategies.

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  54. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    LOL! That has long been discredited redherringbait. New Zealand more crime than Yemen? They are practically at war with Islamists! Than Mexico?? Have you been to any of these places…I have to a few and I know where you’re less likely to be a victim. We have relatively trusted police and a much better statistic gathering ability along with most of the top few, must have something to do with government spending…or something.

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  55. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    Why are you changing the subject?

    You said without poverty, crime would be widespread. Yet there you have oil rich Norway or Denmark for example, absolutely profligate with welfare, and they are at the top of the crime tables.

    I have lived in Indonesia where poverty is widespread, and crime is neglible and there is virtually no welfare..

    I’ll tell you why you changed the subject. You’re full of mindless commie shit that won’t stand logical scrutiny.

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  56. quietlyscanning (12 comments) says:

    I hope you get the irony in your own postings. Absolute nutter…been fun

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  57. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    You’re just another commie know nothing. Full of legend, propaganda and misinformation. Been fun kicking your arse all over Kiwiblog. Run along now buffoon.

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  58. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    You said without *welfare*, crime would be widespread.

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  59. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    The stats totally refute your claim that without welfare crime would be a problem.

    The stats in fact show the contrary, that welfare produces crime.

    As for your pathetically inadequate link, government spending and welfare are two different things you sad illogical poorly educated time wasting dropkick. Now fuck off like you said you were going to, and stop wasting my time with your infantile shit.

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  60. EPMU (30 comments) says:

    Low traffic nite at the SubStandard QS?

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  61. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “Low traffic nite at the SubStandard QS?”

    Which would make it different from every other night in what way?? Collection of arse licking commie sycophants who are as boring as shit.

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  62. Chthoniid (2,047 comments) says:

    @Steve

    You mean Students would have to take notes, pay attention and learn?
    Instead of having it all handed out so they can study at the beach?
    Hahahaha! We are dealing with the “I want” brigade here.

    Two-way street my friend, a lot of lecturers in ‘the good old days’ were appalling. A good lecturer can hold the attention of students, maintain attendance. And in my experience there is little difference in an A or B student now relative to ‘the good old days’.

    Just don’t press me too hard on my opinion of C students ;)

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  63. getstaffed (9,186 comments) says:

    but it’s the blatant hatred you have for people having a hard time on low incomes and/or the dole that should piss a lot of people off.

    Blatant hatred? Where? Before your prejudice gets too worked up a bit of background. I left school at 17 to drive a delivery truck, and have always worked bloody hard. Been made redundant twice and had a couple of long’ish stints without work courtesy of being a contractor. If have never taken a cent of welfare despite it being available.

    Poverty is defined by a lack of choice. Is most cases welfare is a social narcotic that traps people in a lifestyle of dependence thereby perpetuating their personal poverty. If I hate anything, it’s the attitude of entitlement that has far too many Kiwi’s locked in self-pity and dependence. In my view, if those people feel any pain from any form of disentitlement then that’s a positive thing, for them and for the taxpayers that have been supporting their disinclinations.

    Back on topic, student loan should attract interest and the state funding for courses should be directed at those that will help grow our economy. Agriculture, engineering, industrial design etc. Those that want to study interpretive dance or advanced Ecuadorian policy analysis should foot 100% of the real costs.

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  64. annie (539 comments) says:

    Dr Skegg is the ‘differential tax on fatty foods’ guy – isn’t he from another planet?

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