You don’t want Maori looking after their own affairs with money they have invested around the country, employing thousands of Kiwis? So if Maori aren’t allowed to look after their own, then who will? That then falls on the state. What do you fear from Maori or anyone having their own systems? Will they cause you to turn Maori, will they take your firstborn, will they stop you watching your favourite rugby team? No no they won’t so what the bloody hell do you have against people looking after their own affairs. And no that’s not called separatism, it’s called neo-liberalism or even libertarianism, something apparently praised by many on this site.This commentator blurs the distinction between the rights and responsibilities that everyone has to spend, save, or invest, their own hard-earned money, with the rights and responsibilities of tribal trusts handling free money from the government that came via treaty settlements and the special, separate deals via race-based affirmative action, and devolved social services.
If we are we talking about separate provision of social services, the first point to make is that New Zealand has an extensive and elaborate welfare system that delivers social services to everyone. On top of this there are more than 54 Maori-run social service providers around the country, as well as the Whanau Ora one-stop social services shop that seems to have discovered (years after everyone else) that whanau have become fragmented so have created a new “whanau integration” business.
Separate social service provision duplicates services and costs. It’s like running a hospital and setting up a parallel Maori department to provide Maori doctors, nurses, cleaners, supplies etc for Maori patients. The next logical step would be to have Maori hospitals and non-Maori hospitals. This means double the cost for the same service.
There is nothing to stop Maori, like anyone else, working, accumulating, investing, getting rich. Anyone in New Zealand can start off poor and become wealthy, if they are willing to work hard chasing a goal.
But if we are talking about the government handing out anything from $43,000 to $170-million of taxpayer money to a newly created tribal corporation to play capitalist, the problem is that they are playing with public money, and the public will always have an interest in what is being done with that money.
An immediate problem is that these government-backed newbie entrepreneurs start up with large amounts of free money in competition with other businesses that have built up from scratch with borrowed money that they must pay back plus interest. This is a widespread competitive advantage that extends from one end of the country to the other.
These tribal corporations receive police stations, court houses, train stations, farms, forest plantations, and so on, often with leases running for years. This constitutes a guaranteed and on-going cash income, a further competitive advantage.
These businesses are permitted to operate as charities and pay either no or greatly reduced tax. The competitive advantage is entrenched.
An on-going problem is that treaty settlements foster a new form of Maori business that centres on free stuff from the government as of right. Claimants develop personal relationships with government power-and-privilege brokers, get a taste for being first in line for good stuff with the right of first refusal, expect gold-plated government contracts, as well as an ongoing supply of free stuff, such as the latest claim of “shares plus” in state-owned power companies.
Another commentator rejected the claim that there is institutional racism in New Zealand favouring Maori over Pakeha, saying it would be laughable if it wasn’t so embarrassing and sad. This commentator went on to cite an array of negative social indicators to argue that race-based affirmative action could not exist.
It’s sad that our education system has failed you to such an extent that you can believe something like this, when, just, y’know, for example: between 2007 and 2011, on average, 1 in 6 Pakeha children lived in poor households, while during the same period, 1 in 3 Maori children lived in poor households; 51.3% of the prison population is Maori; Maori have the poorest health status of any ethnic group in New Zealand; a larger proportion of Maori youth are out of work or not in education than any other ethnic group; the Maori unemployment rate in the year to June 2012 was more than double that of all other people; according to the Encyclopedia of NZ, in 2001 47% of Māori households owned their homes, while 72.8% of European households did so; the incidence of cancer between 2002-2006 was 20% higher for Maori than non-Maori, while cancer mortality was 80% higher for Maori; Rates of admission for infectious diseases in Pacific Islander and Maori populations are respectively 2.35 and 2.15 times higher than the for NZ Europeans and other ethnic groups; Māori children are nearly 30% more likely to be admitted to hospital and twice as likely to die from “avoidable conditions”; Māori women under 25 years have almost double the unemployment rate of European women; Māori women are at three times higher risk of partner violence than women overall. Yeah, institutional racism: it sure is tough being Pakeha.This “negative social indicators argument” is widely used to argue for more handouts to alleviate poverty. But the commentator’s use of intentionally sad or frightening social indicators to draw attention to issues or to get a political advantage is simply known as “shroud-waving”.
Besides ignoring the free money from the government via treaty settlements and the special, separate deals that come with race-based affirmative action, and devolved social services, this argument overlooks the fact that 71 percent of Maori do not receive a benefit and largely don’t contribute to negative social indicators. In 2006, 88,500 or 29 percent of working-age Maori (18–64 years) were receiving a benefit.
Ministry of Social Development fact sheets for June 2012 revealed that of the 50,000 working-age people receiving an unemployment benefit, 36.5 percent or 18,250 were Maori and 9.3 percent were Pacifika. Of the 59,000 working-age people receiving a sickness benefit, 28 percent, or 16,520, were Maori, and 7 percent were Pacifika. Of the 84,000 working-age people receiving an invalid’s benefit, 22.4 percent, or 18,816, were Maori and 5.1 percent were Pacifika. And of the 112,000 working-age people receiving a domestic purposes benefit, 42.7 percent, or 47,824, were Maori, and 10.2 percent were Pacifika. (1)
Anyone who chooses to live on welfare will not have much money, will be idle, bored, inactive, and have low self-esteem. If they have children, non-working parents, or in most cases, the solo parent, may pass this all on to them, unless of course, their children hate it and do everything in their power to get away from it all.
For our discussion, the most significant benefit statistic is the high proportion of 42.7 percent, or 47,824, of the 112,000 working-age people receiving a domestic purposes benefit, being Maori. The figure of 42.7 percent is a high proportion considering Maori only made up 15 percent of the population in 2006.
A high proportion of Maori solo parents will lead to a high proportion of Maori children being born into deprivation where there is insufficient money, poor parenting, partner violence, child neglect, child abuse, poor health, low or no commitment to schooling, low literacy, unsupervised children getting into mischief, that mischief leading to jail, children becoming parents at a young age, and the cycle being repeated.
The fact that one in three Maori children lived in poor households while one in six New Zealand European children lived in poor households reflects the higher rate of benefit dependency of Maori.(2) The total prison population in March 2012 was 8698. With 51.3 percent, or 4462, Maori, how many of these would have come from the 47,824 Maori sole parent households? (3)
The negative social indicators cited above shows the perverse effects of welfare, where people are paid to be idle, rather than ethnic under-achievement. Giving money to the poor reduces their incentive to enter the workforce, acquire experience, and eventually join the middle class. Providing welfare support for children born out-of-wedlock encourages teen pregnancy and discourages marriage, two serious impediments to escaping poverty. Non-Maori on welfare display the similar characteristic welfare issues.
Maori Party MPs are in denial over the high rate of Maori on the DPB and the flow-on effects. Four of its five MPs did not support the Government's crackdown on welfare, in 2010, by sending parents on the DPB back to work. Co-leader Tariana Turia supported it because she'd lose her job otherwise. The lack of leadership on this issue by Maori Party MPs disadvantages the people they claim to support.
Sources 1. Ministry of Social Development fact sheets http://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/publications-resources/statistics/benefit/2012-national-benefit-factsheets.html
2. P125 Household incomes in New Zealand: Trends in indicators of inequality and hardship 1982 to 2011. http://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/publications-resources/monitoring/household-incomes/index.html
3. Prison facts and statistics - March 2012. http://www.corrections.govt.nz/about-us/facts_and_statistics/prisons/ps-march-2012.html