The full story

October 6th, 2011 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Kate Chapman at Stuff reports:

Sosefina Masoe spends her nights in one of the most powerful offices in the country; from the top of the Beehive she can see the lights of the Wellington skyline and the moon reflecting on the harbour.

When the 49-year-old solo mum isn’t cleaning Prime Minister John Key’s office, she’s at home in her Porirua state house with her four teenage children and four grandchildren.

Masoe joined Parliament’s other cleaners in Labour’s caucus room today to push for a $15 an hour and to remind politicians that poverty does exist in this country.

First of all good on Ms Masoe for being in work, despite having eight kids and grand kids to care for. That’s excellent.

And from my time at Parliament, my memory of the cleaners are they were very hard working and professional. I am sure Ms Masoe is the same. And she is quite entitled to her view that she should be paid $15/hour. Personally I think that it is better to achieve that through negotiation than increasing the minimum wage. You can not create a more prosperous country by simply passing a law demanding everyone gets paid more. If only it was that easy.

She earns the current minimum wage, $13.50, and says that’s about $453.34 in the hand a week.

By the time she pays $250 in rent, $90 for power and $70 for petrol to get to and from work, Masoe has about $43 left to pay for groceries.

That usually consists of budget canned spaghetti and baked beans, cheap bread, oats, noodles and margarine.

“This is what our low wages can afford. It’s budget food, it’s not healthy,” she told MPs and fellow Service and Food Union representatives this afternoon.

Parliament’s cleaners worked hard for the health of those in the complex, they were “the most important people in your life” and deserved more, Masoe said.

“The cost of everything is going up, we can’t afford to feed our families with $13.50 an hour any more.”

Except that the family doesn’t just get $13.50 an hour.

Whale does some maths:

Her take home is $453 per week. Her WFF Credits are worth at least $677 per week if the article claims of eight children (four teens) are correct.  That equates to a salary of about $70,000 per annum.

Whale is correct except I actually make it that she gets $712 of WFF, which makes her gross income equivalent around $77,000. Also on top of that the taxpayer subsidises a state house so that it is only 25% of income maximum.

So when Labour plant a story about how someone has only $43 a week to pay for groceries for their family, it would be nice if the media thought to ask about total household income, because to be frank it is dishonest to ignore the other $700 a week of income.

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94 Responses to “The full story”

  1. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Shes paying $360 a month for electricity? Got the sun lamps on over the inside dope patch 24/7 or what?

    This is bogus.

    What else is bogus is paying cleaners who work in an environment that requires security clearence minimum wage. In my years of working security I’ve known many many cleaners and cleaning organisations. They all worked a lot harder than the people who were there during the day and get paid a lot less. When soemthign went missing it was always the cleaners that were accused first and in my experience, it was NEVER them that was thieving.

    The story as presented is bogus, but come on, minimum wage for cleaning in a high sensitivity area? These people need some apropriate recognition for their work.

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  2. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Eight children? Grandkids at age 49? Jeepers!
    Do we need further proof the culture of entitlement is prevalent in today’s NZ?

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  3. ben (2,386 comments) says:

    How is it possible that any serious reporter could leave state assistance unmentioned in an article like this? I mean how large and expensive does the welfare state have to be before, finally, any talk on poverty must take existing state assistance into account?

    Good on Ms Masoe for working. And shame on the reporter who decided to leave unmentioned that her hourly income after state assistance is something like $35/hour. Shame on Kate Chapman.

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  4. Pete George (21,804 comments) says:

    Shes paying $360 a month for electricity?

    Easy if you have a few teenagers. Heaters in rooms and long showers.

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  5. Brad (75 comments) says:

    Can we work out how much Whaleoil is getting from the state through his benefit? Oh I love a delicious piece of hypocrisy

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  6. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    I’m sure Kate Chapman is fully aware that the lie gets spread faster than a truth thats got a late start. Question is why did she choose to run the pie and why did her editor approve it?

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  7. Michaels (1,317 comments) says:

    Labour not telling the truth? Well fuck me!!
    But what I love is when they get caught out.
    Liar Liar pants on FIRE!!

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  8. artemisia (194 comments) says:

    And don’t forget child support payments. If she is receiving any. And if not why not?

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  9. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    And is not one of the others in the house recieving any kind of payment or… here’s a radical idea, WORKING?

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  10. slightlyrighty (2,448 comments) says:

    Mind you, I see Stuff has corrected the story. Masoe does not work at the PM’s office, but at the police college. Of course, that correction does not include any additional income from WFF.

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  11. BeaB (1,946 comments) says:

    Brad Why is it hypocrisy to point out the facts? Especially when she (and Labour) deliberately didn’t. We deserve the whole truth, not just political manipulation.

    Just like Morning Report this morning – two principals (Pat Newman and Peter Witana) unpleasantly rude and patronising about the Minister of Education but our intrepid state-funded reporters didn’t think to tell us one was a Labour Party candidate, both were deeply involved in teacher unions (major donors to Labour) and both had sent abusive emails to a fellow principal who supported National Standards.

    Like factual errors, bias should always be identified unless of course our media have their own biases.

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  12. grumpyoldhori (2,410 comments) says:

    Come on National, when are you moving state house rentals to so called market rentals so the poor and unwashed can no longer afford them and you can sell the houses off cheap to worthy Nat types.
    Hell why is she getting government aid, if that was dropped you could have lower taxes for MPs.

    Nah, MPs in NZ have never been self serving have they.

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  13. jem (40 comments) says:

    Murray (8,332) Says:
    “Shes paying $360 a month for electricity?”

    Good flipping point!
    Our worst electric bill this year, in a 6person family, 3bedroom house, in mid-winter when we used 3 electric heaters …was $300 in a month….

    Smacks of “stretching the truth”

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  14. m@tt (535 comments) says:

    So let’s put up the minimum wage so that people in this situation have their wages paid by the private sector and the WFF etc can be reduced accordingly. They’ll be in the same position over all but it’ll be the private sector bearing the cost of their income not the tax payer.
    Seems like a win-win to me.

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  15. Pete George (21,804 comments) says:

    it’ll be the private sector bearing the cost of their income not the tax payer.

    That just means the consumer will bear the cost – and it may cost a few more workers their jobs.

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  16. tvb (3,938 comments) says:

    It is the $43 left over for food that is dishonest. The power bill is not difficult. Mine is up there when I have the heat-pump going through the winter the spa pool and much else. Indeed in winter it is over $400. I just budget for it as a cost of winter.

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  17. Brian Smaller (3,915 comments) says:

    Every poverty story Labour has touted in recent years has ended up bogus. The MSM are so biased in their reporting it is laughable.

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  18. cla (18 comments) says:

    When did the minimum wage go up to $13.50? As far as I know, its $13.00 – at least that’s what I’m being paid! Can anyone in the know confirm the increase?

    Edit: http://www.dol.govt.nz/er/pay/minimumwage/ As I thought, minimum wage is still at $13.00 – she is being paid above minimum wage.

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  19. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Breeding, breeding and more breeding. Don’t worry, someone else will pick up the tab.
    Losers begetting losers. Period.

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  20. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Then she can fucking shut down the heating on her bloody spa pool tvb!

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  21. awb (298 comments) says:

    well done everyone on missing the bigger picture, that people are struggling to make ends meet, even when they are working full time. I’m not really in favour of raising the minimum wage, I would prefer the government to cut taxes on the lowest incomes drastically. Having said that, Labour is right to point out the fact that a full time job no longer guarantees you a decent standard of living.

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  22. Pete George (21,804 comments) says:

    cla – according to http://www.dol.govt.nz/er/pay/minimumwage/

    The minimum wage rates are reviewed every year. As of 1 April 2011 the adult minimum wage rates (before tax) that apply for employees aged 16 or over are:

    $13.00 per hour

    (the adult minimum wage applies to all employees aged 16 and over who are not new entrants or trainees)

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  23. seanmaitland (402 comments) says:

    @Brad – where is Whaleoil complaining about his benefit? Unless you can point to it, you look either like a dumbass or a troll. Try looking up the definitions of big words before using them…..

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  24. m@tt (535 comments) says:

    “That just means the consumer will bear the cost”
    Yes, the same as every other dollar of wages paid.
    At least if the employer was paying the true cost of a persons wages, instead of those wages being propped up by the tax payer, then as a consumer you’d have the choice where you spend your consumer dollar, which then become someones wages, rather than just having the government take it and hand it out…

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  25. cla (18 comments) says:

    @Pete – thanks, quick Google helped me out, too!

    They have updated the story to say that she is not the cleaner of the PM’s office, but is in fact the cleaner at Porirua College – no change to title though.

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  26. Pete George (21,804 comments) says:

    Labour is right to point out the fact that a full time job no longer guarantees you a decent standard of living.

    a) it has never guaranteed anything
    b) “decent standard of living” means different things to different people in different places
    c) it has only become something important to Labour over the last three years

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  27. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    awb it really rather looks like this person ISN’T struggling at all. The more “full” this sotry gets the more i ask what in is actually accurate at all.

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  28. awb (298 comments) says:

    Manolo – Your point is so stupid and offensive its not really worth answering, but I should point out birth rates drop when people become more comfortable economically. Lifting people out of poverty and creating a more equitable society would do more to stop people having lots of kids than your ridiculous idea to simply write them off as losers.

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  29. wreck1080 (3,522 comments) says:

    8 kids? WTF.

    Frankly, I don’t know why she bothers working at such a crap job when you can sit around doing nothing and get probably the same.

    One thing I have to ask—is she born in New Zealand?

    If not, then, how did she get into the country with such little education or ability to contribute to the country.

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  30. nickb (3,629 comments) says:

    So let’s put up the minimum wage so that people in this situation have their wages paid by the private sector and the WFF etc can be reduced accordingly.

    Sounds like you have invented a perpetual motion machine there matt.

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  31. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    awb at 9.52am

    I’m delighted you took offense. :D

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  32. seanmaitland (402 comments) says:

    @awb – sorry, but the big picture is that these people are breeding to supplement their income – 4 kids of her own and then those kids have had kids (while they are still teenagers none-the-less) and none of the fathers are around to look after them?

    No matter what way you look at things, that is not just “struggling to make ends meet”. Sure if it was a young couple with one child not being able to afford things then it might fit that – but this is just taking the piss – and going to the press to whinge about it makes them look like greedy little leeches.

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  33. awb (298 comments) says:

    Murray – Do you really think this person is economically comfortable though? They are a cleaner on pretty much minimum wage, with some welfare too, as well as being a solo mum. So thats school fees, doctors visits, food for growing kids, power, internet if they are lucky, dentists, and if the kids are really lucky, maybe a toy every year for christmas. Cost of living is very high my friend.

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  34. awb (298 comments) says:

    seanmaitland- You don’t know anything about “these people.” I’m guessing they are breeding because they had sex and 9 months later a baby popped out. I highly doubt anybody decides kids would be the best way to suppliment income, given that having a single child for 18 years costs about as much as a small house.

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  35. Mr Nobody NZ (396 comments) says:

    AWB – Birth rates would drop a hell of a lot faster if there wasn’t a tax payer cheque being written each week to reward people’s poor choices. Instead we have a system at present that financially encourages children to produced as a means of increasing ones payments.

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  36. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    awb I personally guarantee you she is a shit load more comfortable than me.

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  37. nickb (3,629 comments) says:

    As always with these such stories it boils down to complete and utter negligence/irresponsibility as a parent to have 8 children with no means to support them.

    I am sure I will be labelled a racist for saying so.

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  38. mattyroo (880 comments) says:

    m@tt said:

    So let’s put up the minimum wage so that people in this situation have their wages paid by the private sector and the WFF etc can be reduced accordingly. They’ll be in the same position over all but it’ll be the private sector bearing the cost of their income not the tax payer.
    Seems like a win-win to me.

    That argument is so devoid of economic reasoning, that it could only be something propagated by the left.

    Up the minimum wage – prices must increase to sustain profitability, prices will increase across the board as a percentage much larger than any increase to the minimum wage. Low paid lose.

    Up the minimum wage – Profitability decreases, tax revenue for the gummint decreases. 28% tax take for gummint on company profits vs. ~13.5% tax take on min wage salary. Beneficiaries lose, with most of those same min wage employees also claiming WFF, once again, they will ultimately lose.

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  39. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    nickb (2,066) Says:
    October 6th, 2011 at 10:04 am

    For speaking with such uncivilised clarity you’re labelled from now on as a shameless racist!

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  40. adze (1,695 comments) says:

    Nickb you’re a racist. ;)

    Seriously though I can’t understand why people would have 8 kids in this day and age. The Catholic church for one has a lot to answer for!

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  41. ciaron (1,157 comments) says:

    Cost of living is very high my friend.

    Whats that old saying about cutting your cloth to suit your means?
    Oh thats right, it’s: CUT YOUR CLOTH TO SUIT YOU MEANS.

    Alternatively, if you can’t feed the mouths you got, don’t fuck and produce more.

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  42. awb (298 comments) says:

    I’m sorry but what is the government meant to do? Cut struggling families off welfare as punishment for having children 5 years ago? Thats barbaric, and terribly stupid. What is going to happen to those kids? Are they going to get an education? Or will they join the ranks of unskilled people ending up unemployed? The way you guys talk about welfare and families its like you can magic the kids away by cutting benefits, they are here now though and we have to deal with them, like it or not.

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  43. ciaron (1,157 comments) says:

    The way you guys talk about welfare and families its like you can magic the kids away by cutting benefits, they are here now though and we have to deal with them, like it or not.

    Thats true, but it does not follow that we should continue the current “oh well, you’re pregnant again? no worries, you’re entitled to another $100/week” mentality.

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  44. spector (180 comments) says:

    just a quick question…. but if she has four teenage children and four grandchildren… then at least two of her children must have had children of their own ( 1 teenager would be hard pressed to pop out four kids on her own and still be a teenager). If this is the case won’t there also be at least two DPB benefits going into the home as well?

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  45. nasska (9,501 comments) says:

    Nickb

    You said the unthinkable & nailed it. It is always possible that a child is conceived when parents are not financially prepared for its arrival & circumstances can change along the way eg loss of job or sickness. What isn’t possible is to have sympathy for those in less than great financial circumstances who just keep on breeding because the state will pick up the bill. When people end up with half a dozen kids & no means to support them usually they have crossed the line of being unlucky & it would be overly kind to describe them as being careless.

    We don’t know much of the history behind Ms Masoe’s predicament but the old adage that “if you can’t feed them, don’t breed them” could be good if belated advice.

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  46. tas (527 comments) says:

    This story is bogus. They get where she works wrong. They get the minimum wage wrong. Her budget doesn’t make sense. And they forget to ask how much welfare she gets. Oh well, it’s still a nice yarn if you don’t think too hard.

    I expect that the minimum wage activists looked high and low for the best example of someone working hard on minimum wage, but still struggling. If someone getting 70k is the best example they found, then it shows how hollow their argument is.

    More to the point, connecting one example of a struggling worker to the minimum wage is a logical non-sequitur. The minimum wage is a one-size-fits-all solution—it applies to everyone, not just this cherry-picked example. For every hardworking cleaner supporting a family, there is a troubled 16-year-old who is supported by his parents and needs work experience way more than he needs money; is it fair to price him out of the market?

    Good grief!

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  47. Brian Smaller (3,915 comments) says:

    awb – and by your logic nothing will ever change because there are always kids involved. How about tough shit. We had the kids we could afford. Why cant the poor? The ‘why’ is that they know they will get money from the magic WINZ fairy.

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  48. backster (2,000 comments) says:

    The Police College is only 3 kilometers from Porirua City Centre and most of Porirua is closer than that so $70 per week in petrol to get there and back does seem a bit excessive.

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  49. awb (298 comments) says:

    Brian Smaller – Please explain why poverty stricken countries with no social welfare also have high birthrates. There is a common factor, and its not the WINZ fairy.

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  50. Rich Prick (1,320 comments) says:

    Labour would be well advised to stay away from the person “on struggle street” stories. In this land of welfare-for-all, those types of story are bound to fall flat. In fact I’d suggest that on $77k, a cleaner is doing bloody well.

    Again, no mention of support (or lack thereof) from the father(s).

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  51. jem (40 comments) says:

    awb (14) Says:
    October 6th, 2011 at 9:57 a

    A little info. Kids under 18 get FREE dental, kids under 16 get FREE GP.

    Oh ..and I have 4kids,single income, and after tax I basically earn the same as she does with her WFF etc… my family gets by just fine!
    We just don’t buy cigarettes, Ice cream is a rare treat, only buy stewing meat or mince unless a special occasion..etc etc, you would be amazed how EASY it is to survive if you take responsibility, look out for specials, ration a little.

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  52. cabbage (454 comments) says:

    @AWB I sincerely doubt that anyone who works as a cleaner and has 8 children could reasonably expect to be economically comfortable, Regardless of if they’re on the minimum wage, or not.

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  53. mattyroo (880 comments) says:

    awb said:

    Thats barbaric, and terribly stupid. What is going to happen to those kids? Are they going to get an education? Or will they join the ranks of unskilled people ending up unemployed? The way you guys talk about welfare and families its like you can magic the kids away by cutting benefits, they are here now though and we have to deal with them, like it or not.

    Clearly you’re devoid of rational thought too awb.

    These kids are already ending up unemployed and unskilled, due to the entitlement system.

    Read the fucking article and use your noggin. Teenagers in this family are already popping out kids, solely because of the lifestyle choices they have made, because they have seen their parent(s) make those same lifestyle choices. Both generations were able to make those choices because of the entitlement system.

    The teenagers in this family are becoming unskilled and unemployed, because of the fucking entitlement system!

    What hope can one have for the newest generation in this family? They will already be learning their parents leech sucking ways.

    Now I’ll go and sit in the racist corner with nickb and ciaron.

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  54. awb (298 comments) says:

    mattyroo – High birthrates have nothing to do with the so called “entitlement system”. They are a factor of poverty, plain and simple. The WFF allows the kids to go to school, rather than having to go to work instead. I agree that once someone is old enough to work they should be working, but we should be giving the kids the best possible chance to get an education first.

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  55. Grizz (476 comments) says:

    The 4 grandchildren are probably children of her teenage children and hence they will likely be on the DPB and receiving child support payments from deadbeat fathers, so the household income is likely to be higher still. Sounds like a great family to triumph.

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  56. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Well, she certainly looks well fed.

    I suspect her true net income is somewhere in between the silly partisan estimates.

    Why can’t people just be honest?

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  57. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Which party is paying you awb, Greens or Labour?

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  58. mattyroo (880 comments) says:

    It’s got nothing to do with birthrates fuckwit!

    It is that the entitlement system is teaching them that it is ok to sit on your big fat KFC fueled ass all day long, doing sweet fuck all. That to do that, is entirely normal and the gummint will be along shortly to help out.

    This encourages idleness, which of course is interspersed with a bit of responsibilityless fucking, which results in a responsibityless kid.

    That is what is wrong with the entitlement system.

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  59. Rich Prick (1,320 comments) says:

    Ah yes awb, achieving the miracle of poverty. If Ms Masoe were a balance sheet the cause of her “problem” becomes immediately obvious. There is nothing terribly wrong with the income line, its the expense line that is giving her a headache. As the saying goes, if you can’t feed ‘em, don’t breed ‘em.

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  60. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    ..children of her teenage children and hence they will likely be on the DPB and receiving child support payments from deadbeat fathers..

    An accurate and fitting desription of the meaning of losers.

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  61. awb (298 comments) says:

    Murray – Neither pays me, though I do agree with the Green policy on kids.
    No, I’m just motivated by my disgust that the community here would so enthusiastically shit on someone who works as a cleaner. I’ve been a cleaner in my time, and its very thankless work, with universally low pay. When there are no other jobs going though you take what you can get. I expect this solo mum was in a similar situation.

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  62. Ed Snack (1,535 comments) says:

    Scott, what’s partisan at pointing out the undoubtedly deliberate misrepresentations in this story ? Unless there’s something very wrong, her household must be on close to $100K a year ! Get that, she’s a “rich prick” by the last government standards, and they now want to use her as a poster child for poverty !

    The $100K is from her own wages, plus WFF (and care to suggest that she doesn’t qualify ?), plus two others in the house on the DPB at least. Now I’ll admit that it is possible that she may have other, older children not living at home and the grandchildren could be theirs rather than belonging to those still at home. That would reduce the household income directly but would then imply that the parent (s) make no contribution towards the upkeep of their children. I’m sure the sob-story would have mentioned if the grandchildren are orphans so I’ll discount that for now. So we have quite a wealthy woman here, wonder where the money goes.

    She has 4 of her own children plus 4 grandchildren, and no fathers in sight anywhere…colour me surprised.

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  63. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Who the fuck is “shitting” on her awb? We ‘d never heard of her till katie chapman did a bullshit number on her for political agenda.

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  64. awb (298 comments) says:

    Murray – I don’t think it would be a stretch to say the community here is generally unsympathetic to a working solo mother who is struggling.

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  65. Brian Smaller (3,915 comments) says:

    awb – No, most of the community here is unsympathetic to a woman who being less than honest about the true state of her household income.

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  66. ciaron (1,157 comments) says:

    awb, We’re unsympathetic towards people who continually and repeatedly make bad descisions and expect us to pick up the tab. Genuine charity on the other hand is a completely different matter.

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  67. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Ed Snack – “what’s partisan at pointing out the undoubtedly deliberate misrepresentations in this story?”

    Partisan is *also* conveniently assuming she receives benefits for all her “8 kids and grand kids”.

    More information required wouldn’t you agree?

    Funny thing about partisans is they think only their opponents are partisan. Egocentric human nature I suppose.

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  68. nickb (3,629 comments) says:

    It seems Labour has merely cherry picked another behind the scenes Labour voter/activist for a media sob story whilst telling large porkies along the way.

    Remember the millionaire property investor with the “I can’t get the dole” tale?

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  69. ciaron (1,157 comments) says:

    Edit: make bad decisions and expect us to pick up the tab.

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  70. nickb (3,629 comments) says:

    An accurate and fitting desription of the meaning of losers.

    Manolo! For your unashamed racism I am reporting you to Joris de Bres.

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  71. Kimble (4,092 comments) says:

    To the Left:
    It is a commonly made error that the hardship caused by reducing an overly generous policy is the fault of those adjusting the policy, rather than those who implemented the bad policy to begin with.

    To the Right:
    It is a commonly made error to think the conclusion that “it would have been better to never implement this policy” necessarily makes “remove the policy” the best solution.

    To the Centre:
    WTF are you doing here? This is, like, the 65th comment.

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  72. Kimble (4,092 comments) says:

    Partisan is *also* conveniently assuming she receives benefits for all her “8 kids and grand kids”.

    But that assumption is very likely to be true. Its possible she isnt getting any other benefits, but very, very unlikely. It is unreasonable to assume she isnt getting other help, so any person, partisan or not, would be safe in assuming she did.

    On the other hand, the only people ignoring the other benefits would be doing so either out of ignorance or for political motivations. As WFF is a very well-known piece of legislation, that LABOUR introduced, you can probably rule out ignorance.

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  73. kiwi in america (2,335 comments) says:

    awb
    Struggling on combined gross income of $77k? If all she had to live on was her wages for sure it would be next to impossible to raise 8 kids on $30k. Whale raises the very valid point about WFF, accomodation supplement and who knows what other state assistance flows into the home. This is lazy ideologically driven journalism.

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  74. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Kimble – “It is a commonly made error that the hardship caused by reducing an overly generous policy is the fault of those adjusting the policy”

    If the adjusters are representative of the institution that introduced the policy, then beneficiaries will perceive the adjustment as being the theft of their entitlement.

    ““it would have been better to never implement this policy” necessarily makes “remove the policy” the best solution.”

    The internal logic of this statement would suggest that the “removal of a policy that should never have been made” is the only correct course of action, assuming the societal context remains the same.

    “To the Centre: WTF are you doing here?”

    Everyone is in the centre. And we all suffer from existential angst.

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  75. david (2,482 comments) says:

    Never have I seen the difference between the Left and the Right so starkly demonstrated.
    The Left (awb etc) consider “this poor person” and sees this person’s situation as a problem to be fixed. Solution is easy just redistribute some more money from those who are (by their definition) wealthy.
    The Right see “this poor person” and start asking questions. What is the cause of this person’s problems? what changeable environmental factors exist that could be modified and prevent “this poor person and others like her” from having the problems described? Is the story I am being told logical and does it pass a simple smell test?

    Neither has been mean and advocated that benefits should be removed.
    One side is dog whistling, the other is looking for a meaningful solution. Which is which?

    Who was it that said “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, give him a net and teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”? A proverb that precisely describes this scenario.

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  76. KevinH (1,128 comments) says:

    Is Whale’s maths correct?, does she in fact recieve WFF?, and is her rent subsidised?. She may not be eligible. There are thousands of New Zealand families who share a similar predicament, their costs exceed their incomes. For instance it is typical for low income families to get into arrears on their power bills and are in a constant catch up scenario.
    I’m not disputing that this story might be padded but still are Whales facts accurate.

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  77. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Kimble – “8 kids and grand kids”.

    Suggests to me that some of her kids are the parents of the grandkids in her house, and therefore:

    1) Receiving their own wage or benefit.
    2) Independent, and therefore not considered in their mother’s care.

    Beware righties. This may be a trap. Check your facts first.

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  78. Kimble (4,092 comments) says:

    If the adjusters are representative of the institution that introduced the policy, then beneficiaries will perceive the adjustment as being the theft of their entitlement.

    Doesnt make it true and certainly doesnt give the Left any right to reinforce those mistaken perceptions.

    The internal logic of this statement would suggest that the “removal of a policy that should never have been made” is the only correct course of action, assuming the societal context remains the same.

    Yes, IF the societal context remains the same. But it never does. Thats the point. Once a plocy has been implemented you can never return to a state where the policy has never been implemented.

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  79. Kimble (4,092 comments) says:

    Suggests to me that some of her kids are the parents of the grandkids in her house, and therefore:

    In which case the household would be recieving their income, or their welfare. This would mean the story is still BS. In fact it would be even more so.

    Independent, and therefore not considered in their mother’s care.

    In which case, dont include them on the cost side of the ledger.

    A reasonable assumption is that the 8 kids do not bring any money in and are dependent on the minimum wage worker. This is actually the most favourable way to view the story.. If the kids were earning a wage then the entire story is a lie. So to assume it isnt a complete fabrication, we must assume the kids dont earn anything.

    We are looking at this story in the best light possible with reasonable assumptions. Even doing so the story falls apart.

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  80. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Kimble – “That’s the point. Once a policy has been implemented you can never return to a state where the policy has never been implemented.”

    So is it best to slap a patch on the policy and add another layer of bureaucracy and legislation, or is it better to review the whole policy, keep the baby, and chuck out the bathwater?

    (Yes it is a biased analogy, but still makes my point as I am an advocate of policy reform)

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  81. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Kimble – “We are looking at this story in the best light possible with reasonable assumptions. Even doing so the story falls apart.”

    I agree that the story was a misrepresentation of her financial situation, and spinning like a top to the left

    But he counter-argument didn’t simply stop the top. It span it the other way.

    Yet another reason why this adversarial human political system is inherently corrupt.

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  82. Kimble (4,092 comments) says:

    So is it best to slap a patch on the policy and add another layer of bureaucracy and legislation, or is it better to review the whole policy, keep the baby, and chuck out the bathwater?

    Depends. Thats the point. What is certain is that striking the policy from the books is not everywhere and always the best policy.

    You are taking your time to work through what I thought was a fairly straight-forward idea. Hopefully you have caught up.

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  83. berend (1,600 comments) says:

    A cleaner makes $70,000 a year? And most of that paid for by other taxpayers? That explains why this country is going nowhere.

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  84. seanmaitland (402 comments) says:

    @berend – seeing as she cleans the Beehive, technically all of her income is paid for by taxpayers

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  85. mpledger (428 comments) says:

    What ever state-assisted income the family gets is beside the point. Her point was that she can’t live on her wages alone.

    Surely a person working a 40 hour week should have enough wages to feed, house and clothe themselves and at least 2.2 dependents.

    That’s the real point.

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  86. Scott Chris (5,675 comments) says:

    Kimble – “You are taking your time to work through what I thought was a fairly straight-forward idea. Hopefully you have caught up.”

    Lol. Perhaps I helped clarify things for you Kimble. :)

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  87. KiwiGreg (3,129 comments) says:

    “Surely a person working a 40 hour week should have enough wages to feed, house and clothe themselves and at least 2.2 dependents.”

    Why?

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  88. Lance (2,309 comments) says:

    The evil fucking tight ass bastards of NZ are only allowing $77K for her to live on.

    8 Kids, no apparent attempt at improved skills or education, I doubt there is a vege garden or other forms of self help.

    And WE are supposed to feel guilty about this?

    I call bullshit on that.

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  89. Muzza M (286 comments) says:

    “Brian Smaller – Please explain why poverty stricken countries with no social welfare also have high birthrates. There is a common factor, and its not the WINZ fairy.”

    I will answer this one for you awb. Large families in third world countries can be attributed to three things:
    1. A belief that having many children will mean that you will be better looked after when you can no longer work
    2. Religous reasons
    3. No access to contraception (often because of 2 above)
    None of these situations (except possibly religeon in a minority of cases) are applicable to New Zealand.

    I live in the Philippines where the people are predominantly Catholic, or Muslims. They have huge families, daily I have people coming to my door wanting $1 so they can buy a kilo of rice. Unfortunately for them, I have my own family to feed, I cannot feed the whole village. The New Zealand tax payer is getting to this point where you can only look after yourself, being expected to feed other peoples families is wearing a bit thin.

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  90. Kimble (4,092 comments) says:

    “Surely a person working a 40 hour week should have enough wages to feed, house and clothe themselves and at least 2.2 dependents.”

    Why?

    Because people manage to do it on welfare payments. So the person would only be working if they made more than welfare (otherwise they would be on welfare).

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  91. KiwiGreg (3,129 comments) says:

    I guess my “why” was more about surely a job pays what it’s worth, it doesn’t get worth more because the employee has higher costs.

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  92. DJP6-25 (1,229 comments) says:

    I just assume that stories in the antique media will automatically support the socialist cause. I get my news from the new media. I only read stuff from the antique media if there is a link.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  93. Michael (880 comments) says:

    @Scott Chris – if it is the case the some of the children are earning independently or are being cared for by others, then Ms Masoe is still in a household that is earning much more than the stated amount of $453 a week. The fact she claimed that she couldn’t afford anything other than budget food like tinned spaghetti is unlikely to be true either way, unless her family are ripping her off (which would not be solved by raising the minimum wage as Mrs Masoe would only be $40 a week better off.)

    The point of Whale and David have made (and it’s a very good one) is that the person rolled out as the sob story who is unable to pay her living costs from her wages is actually a deception used by the SWFU and Labour for their campaign. Both should have known that opponents would immediately run to the IRD site and work out the value of support provided by WFF according to the circumstances given and that the story wouldn’t stand up to scrutiny.

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  94. Australis (99 comments) says:

    There is a sustainable amount that can be paid for any particular cleaning service. One can debate how much that is, but it isn’t driven by the living costs of employees.

    If each employee receives more, there will have to be fewer employees. Immutable law of economics.

    Has there ever been a more regressive tax than the ETS? When the GST was increased, low earners were compensated. Not so when electricity and fuel costs were raised last year, and will be raised every year henceforth.

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