Author says kids better off in India

June 18th, 2014 at 12:48 pm by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

The poorest Kiwi children are now no better off than some children in the slums of India, a leading author says.

Professor Jonathan Boston, co-author of  in New Zealand, said at the book’s launch in Auckland last night that he saw worse poverty in some Kiwi families than he saw when he spent a month late last year in Delhi slums where his wife, Dr Mary Hutchinson, worked as a volunteer doctor for a Christian charity.

“The Indian Government feeds every primary school child lunch every day for 130 million children,” he said.

“We saw very few seriously malnourished children in the slums of Delhi.

With respect to Professor Boston, but that is a ridiculous claim.

The under 5 mortality rate in India is 56/1000.  In NZ it is 6.

UPDATE: I understand that Professor Boston thinks his comments have been misrepresented and that he wasn’t saying (or intending to say) that some Kiwis kids are worse off than in India.

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47 Responses to “Author says kids better off in India”

  1. kowtow (7,634 comments) says:

    Idiot .

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  2. mike tan (433 comments) says:

    Sensationalism to attract attention (at the expense of the plight of the children in India).

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  3. mikenmild (10,744 comments) says:

    “It’s on a long continuum, and in terms of that continuum some of our children overlap with the circumstances of children in developing countries in a way that I find quite shocking.”

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  4. goldnkiwi (994 comments) says:

    Clearly they should just have shot Slum Dog Millionaire in….South Auckland? Perhaps a sequel?

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  5. Spam (593 comments) says:

    So… they’re feeding the children who actually go to primary school. And yet 20% of Indian Children aren’t there to get the meals.

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  6. starboard (2,475 comments) says:

    We dont have poverty in NZ..simple. We have lazy arseholes who blow their welfare money on non essentials hence leaving no money to feed and clothe their feral offspring.
    Boston lives in fairy land.

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  7. Ashley Schaeffer (407 comments) says:

    Christ, I hope taxpayers aren’t funding this clown.

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  8. Pita (367 comments) says:

    He’s not related to Gareth Morgan is he?

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  9. OneTrack (2,613 comments) says:

    Do I assume the conclusion of the book is that John Key must feed all primary school children lunch?

    ““We saw very few seriously malnourished children in the slums of Delhi.” – How many seriously malnourished children did he see in New Zealand, and did he report their parents to CYFS?

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  10. RRM (9,467 comments) says:

    Did anyone see that thing that is circulating on Facebook at the moment, showing two low-caste teenaged girls in India who’d been hanged from a tree after being pack raped?

    Yeah, New Zealand is just as bad as that.

    Idiot.

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  11. greenjacket (417 comments) says:

    I have been to India a few times, and I have also been to some rough areas of Northland. I am bewildered as to why someone would make such an obviously ridiculous claim. Jonathan Boston is probably making a ridiculous claim like this to garner publicity for his book (which would probably otherwise go unnoticed). Unfortunately by making such an obviously preposterous claim he has destroyed his credibility.

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  12. OneTrack (2,613 comments) says:

    “Christ, I hope taxpayers aren’t funding this clown.”

    We usually are.

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  13. Manolo (13,375 comments) says:

    The deluded “academic” Boston must be a card-carrying member of the Labour Party, therefore his credibility is near zero.

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  14. Jimbo (40 comments) says:

    I know Jonathan Boston: he’s a very thoughtful and considered man. I don’t agree with most of his policy prescriptions but I can’t disagree with what he’s saying.

    If you read it carefully, and I know that’s a big ask for many of the illiterates out there, he’s saying that some NZ children are worse off than some Delhi unfortunates. That may be controversial, but it’s not untrue. We need to acknowledge that many NZ children are not well looked after.

    Now my remedy would be to enforce some tough love on the parents. Jonathan’s remedy would be to give them more money. That’s a legitimate disagreement. But what’s not fair is attacking Jonathan for pointing out some unfortunate home truths.

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  15. OneTrack (2,613 comments) says:

    Jimbo – “Jonathan’s remedy would be to give them more money.”

    Because that has worked so well up until now?

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  16. Ashley Schaeffer (407 comments) says:

    I know Jonathan Boston: he’s a very thoughtful and considered man.

    Jonathan’s remedy would be to give them more money.

    So not that thoughtful and considered then.

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  17. maxwell (46 comments) says:

    Maybe Prof Boston should apply to Prince Charles for his next grant.

    Our future Monarch thinks Indian slums are the place to be and the way we (but not him, obviously) should be living

    http://michellemalkin.com/2010/10/09/prince-charles-loses-his-last-marble/

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  18. Roger (6 comments) says:

    With respect I can’t respect Prof Boston’s views at all. Where are the nz children sold to sweat shops, the sex traffic, organ harvesting and worse to finance poor families survival? I think he must have taken a north Korean type tour with a helpful guide pointing out all the right things he should see.

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  19. starboard (2,475 comments) says:

    Jimbo have you been to India? I have I spent 10 miserable days there and I can tell you your mate Boston is talking out his arse.

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  20. RRM (9,467 comments) says:

    Boston must be a card-carrying member of the Labour Party, therefore his credibility is near zero.

    That, right there, is the best moan-olo auto rant I’ve ever read.

    A totally imaginary presumption in my head, therefore, something in the real world is certainly true.

    Try this: The pixies at the bottom of my garden told me Cunliffe is a fool, therefore, Cunliffe is a fool.

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  21. thedavincimode (6,539 comments) says:

    greenjacket is onto it.

    I cannot understand why anyone who was serious about trying to improve the lives of children in this country would make such a patently absurd claim. Anyone who has actually been to India will know that some kids have nothing more than the dust in the streets they are lying in with their parents.

    If anything, he only trivialises the plight of those poor kids in India.

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  22. alloytoo (432 comments) says:

    There are no children living in abject poverty in NZ, there may however be abused children.

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  23. Elaycee (4,302 comments) says:

    Professor Jonathan Boston….

    If he is being correctly quoted, then I call bullshit:

    I travel to India often. His suggestion kids in India are better off than kids here in NZ, is an appalling attempt to be sensationalist in order to publicise his book.

    I haven’t seen kids in NZ picking / eating food scraps from a dirt street.
    I haven’t seen kids in NZ washing themselves at the side of the main road using water from a (filthy) ‘stream’.
    I haven’t seen kids in NZ tugging at sleeves / begging money from visitors.
    I haven’t seen kids in NZ offering the ‘services’ of their sister for 50 rupee (NZ$1).
    I haven’t seen kids in NZ having to live in an old Kelvinator box.
    I haven’t seen kids in NZ having to fight each other to get near restaurant scraps discovered in a rubbish bin.
    I haven’t seen kids in NZ being offered as sex partners by their fathers!

    I never knew what real ‘poverty’ was, until I saw it first hand in India. And for this Kiwi bloke, it was a numbing experience.

    And claims that Indian kids (Delhi slums) are somehow better off than their NZ counterparts, is total bollocks.

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  24. mikemikemikemike (312 comments) says:

    It’s true, we should do nothing until it gets at least as bad as it is currently in India. I mean they are all smiles despite all of that so it can’t be all that bad.

    Screw the poor, they wouldn’t know what to do with the extra money anyway.

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  25. mikenmild (10,744 comments) says:

    ‘And claims that Indian kids (Delhi slums) are better off than their NZ counterparts, is total bollocks.’
    Except that wasn’t the claim. But go right ahead, attack that straw man.

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  26. RRM (9,467 comments) says:

    Jonathan Boston, co-author of Child Poverty in New Zealand, said at the book’s launch in Auckland last night that he saw worse poverty in some Kiwi families than he saw when he spent a month late last year in Delhi slums

    Umm, Mikenmild, I have a straw man waiting here at reception for you… ;-)

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  27. mikenmild (10,744 comments) says:

    That’s different from what Elaycee claimed was being said.

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  28. mike tan (433 comments) says:

    What is the solution mikenmild? Does it involve writing books?

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  29. Jack5 (4,591 comments) says:

    Several million child slaves in India work in factories, brothels, or well-off Indian homes etc.

    Saying NZ kids are as badly off as kids in the worst Indian slums is bullshit, sadly typical of the politically correct “studies” that are spiced up to support the political views of those behind the studies.

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  30. prosper (132 comments) says:

    This guy is a professor of what and where because if that statement is an indication of his intelligence and analytical ability I want to make sure that my kids avoid his lectures and probably the university if that’s the caliber of people they employ.

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  31. G152 (151 comments) says:

    Another educated buffoon with a book to keep out of the remainder bin

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  32. kowtow (7,634 comments) says:

    goldnkiwi

    What would the South Auckland sequel be called……..SlumBro Millionaire?

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  33. David Garrett (6,447 comments) says:

    Jonathon Boston taught me (Political Science) at Canterbury in the 80′s…he was a good teacher. Now he seems to have morphed into some sort of expert on everything…He ran a forum at Victoria to oppose three strikes when I was an MP…well, of course it was billed as a “panel discussion”…except there were three academics who ranted and raved against it…and me…

    I posted this on GD earlier about the Herald Story:

    ….

    The “story” is helpfully illustrated with two photos…one of a kiwi kid in the “one bedroom rental she shares with her family”..it shows a well made bed, an oil column heater and a TV…with curtains on the windows…The shot in Mumbai shows two kids standing beside their “house”, a brown tarpaulin….perhaps the sub-editor who laid it out though the story was as stupid as I do

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  34. Tarquin North (134 comments) says:

    Sounds like the kind of drivel Hone preaches.

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  35. goldnkiwi (994 comments) says:

    The giga naire ad? Done in Bollywood style?

    I confess that I have to rely on the Slum Dog movie to think I understand the abject poverty that we are comparing here.

    Have we started making our own beggars yet?

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  36. lilman (892 comments) says:

    knob!!!!!

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  37. David Garrett (6,447 comments) says:

    I have just read the update…he’s been misrepresented…I don’t think so….

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  38. Dead Earnest (91 comments) says:

    Kiwis desperate to escape grinding poverty have been escaping in rickety boats to set up corner dairies in Mumbai

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  39. Amelia44 (5 comments) says:

    What a load of utter nonsense! Professor Jonathan Boston should know better than to make sweeping statements like that, based on tenuous anecdotal evidence. India is a much more dangerous environment for children than New Zealand. Just the other day I read about how, due to a lack of basic sanitation in the village of Katra in Uttar Pradesh, 2 teenage girls aged 14 and 16 were gang raped and killed while they were looking for somewhere to use as a toilet (http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2014/jun/01/girls-toilet-rape-murder-anger-embarrassment). According to this article, “Attacks on girls and women as they look for somewhere private to defecate are frighteningly common”. Furthermore, even before they are born children are at risk. According to a 2010 report by the Harvard School of Public Health, India is one of the most dangerous countries in which to give birth. The report stated that 150,000 deaths could be prevented by 2015 if Indian women had access to better family planning and health care during their pregnancies and deliveries. Add to that the fact that, according to a 2012 UN report, India is the most dangerous place in the world to be born a girl (females are twice as likely to die before reaching the age of 5 years) and the outlook for children there, especially females, is not as rosy as that pictured in the Professor’s statement. Certainly, it is a very good thing that malnutrition levels are low in Delhi. However there is a whole host of other risks that children face in India and often don’t survive e.g. water contamination.
    I suspect that, by saying this, Professor Boston is courting controversy and trying to get more publicity for his book. How is this for an idea? Let’s collect all the children in New Zealand, who he claims are worse off here, and send them over to India for a visit. Then when they return (the ones who are still alive, that is) interview them to see whether they prefer to be over there or in New Zealand;)

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  40. Northland Wahine (648 comments) says:

    The only way kiwi kids are less fortunate than kids in Indian slums… Their parents.

    End of.

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  41. goldnkiwi (994 comments) says:

    My five year old (on Sunday) grandson has certainly benefitted from day care but even without it I think his comprehension would be higher than a three year old. Shouldn’t that be classed as child abuse?

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  42. Aussie Aussie Aussie (22 comments) says:

    Let them Eat McDonalds

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  43. Aussie Aussie Aussie (22 comments) says:

    Sorry Let them Eat KFC

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  44. Left Right and Centre (2,821 comments) says:

    600 million Indians have not got toilets.

    Game **OVER** !!!!! NEXT

    (kiwi beno kids might look and smell like impoverished Indian kids – nothing to do with a lack of available water though)

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  45. Longknives (4,464 comments) says:

    “UPDATE: I understand that Professor Boston thinks his comments have been misrepresented and that he wasn’t saying (or intending to say) that some Kiwis kids are worse off than in India.”

    Yet that’s EXACTLY what this fucking bullshit artist said! And EXACTLY what the Lucy Lawless-edited lefty Herald screamed!
    “Child Poverty…Waah!!”
    There is NO fucking ‘Child Poverty’ in New Zealand. Mum spending her DPB on pokies and weed doesn’t make us ‘third world’- just mugs for paying feral scum to breed….

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  46. Aussie Aussie Aussie (22 comments) says:

    Let them eat McDonalds at Star ship
    if they survive the Bash

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  47. Aussie Aussie Aussie (22 comments) says:

    I thought gay Marriage was now compulsory in NZ

    then there will be fewer kids

    so you will no longer have to worry your pretty little heads

    and then you will have a pink carnation as a flag
    and the all blacks will wear pink tutus

    and John Banks and John Key Could Marry
    and them adopt all the poor children

    like Brad Pitt

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