Libertarianz Say: 'Roll Back the Welfare State'
The Liberarianz spokesman on welfare Sally O'Brien announced her party's
policy on state welfare today. "We're going to end it," said O'Brien,
simply. "We're going to abolish state welfare altogether and give you your
money back so you can support whom you choose, how you choose."
Coupled with her policy announcement, she confirmed details of a radical
sell-off of state assets in order to fund a transitional programme to
support some existing beneficiaries, and she gave her arguments why her
radical programme is necessary.
"We need - as a matter of urgency - to remove the welfare millstone from
around our necks," she said. "More importantly, we need to rid ourselves of
the notion that stealing from one person to help another is moral. The
concept of a state-enforced welfare system rests on the premise that if a
person can demonstrate a need, then society - his neighbours - must be
plundered to fulfil that need. Libertarianz reject the ideology of the
welfare state in its totality," she confirmed.
Libertarianz Welfare Policy:
Ever since the premise of state-enforced welfare has been instituted around
the world the kinds of needs to be met by the state - and the numbers of
people who can 'demonstrate' those needs - has mushroomed.
We now see great numbers of able minded and able-bodied people in a
miserably dependent state while they suck their lifeblood from their fellow
countrymen. We see communities of people whose natural benevolence has been
destroyed through finding the state's hand constantly in their pocket. Such
is the effect of an all-pervasive and bankrupt morality, where demonstrating
a need can be more easily rewarded than demonstrating an ability, and where
eventually a person's need becomes more important than a person's ability.
Many years ago humanity rejected cannibalism as inhuman. It is time that
state welfare be recognised as moral cannibalism, and reviled as such.
Only the Libertarianz Party rejects absolutely the ethical root on which
state-enforced social welfare feeds. Only such a fundamental rethink by New
Zealanders will make significant inroads into unnecessary dependency. Most
of us realise that if we fall on hard times, our family, friends and
colleagues can choose whether and in what way they would like to help. It is
the task of Libertarianz to remind New Zealanders that what is clearly right
within individual personal relationships is even truer on a wider scale.
So how do we get from here to there? Concentrate initially on diminishing
the full menu of state social welfare agencies, state-assisted social
welfare agencies and state-mandated social welfare agencies. This can be
effected by either straight-out abolition, or by transforming these agencies
to a stand alone, deregulated, privately funding basis.
Substantially less funding will be forthcoming from government, but some
will be able to compete as charitable institutions or offer insurance cover
on an equal basis with existing and new private organisations. Assistance
into work training schemes for example could continue with voluntary
philanthropic funding only - no doubt the politicians who support these
ideas and their party members will be the first to put their hands in their
· When voting on, or introducing legislation, Libertarianz - as a
parliamentary minority - will always work towards shrinking the social
security functions of government, consistent with suitable alternative
frameworks being in place.
· A Libertarianz majority would have the following priorities for
social welfare deregulation in its first one hundred days:
- Our senior citizens who are in and approaching retirement have,
on the whole, paid the most taxes for the longest time and would have the
greatest difficulty adjusting. Priority will be given to ensuring income for
current senior citizens - and those currently fifty five and over - by
providing annuities with funds boosted from the sale of state assets. Beyond
that there will be no further state funded or state enforced retirement
schemes. New Zealanders will have complete free personal choice over the
plans they wish to make for their retirement.
- Priority will be given to providing for existing seriously
disabled people by the same means, and for the transitional period only.
- All low income working people who are currently receiving income
support and supplements will immediately have that support replaced by the
substantial tax cuts that all New Zealanders will receive including the
first $15,ooo income being tax free.
- All non-working, but able, beneficiaries will immediately benefit
from the growth in opportunities to work that is to be expected with reduced
taxation and a deregulated business environment. The unemployment benefit
will very quickly be axed.
- Existing solo parents will - in the transition period - receive
annuities to support them until their child's third birthday. Child
maintenance payments from an absent parent will be pursued, but only where
it can be justified under a legal burden of proof. State funded DPB will be
axed. Private adoption and fostering agencies will be encouraged. People who
want to adopt children may be able to pay the birth parents. This would have
the effect of paying people who can't cope, or don't really care for their
children, to give them up rather than paying them to keep them and have more
as the current system does.
- The child safety, severe neglect and youth crime management
functions of the Children, Young Persons and their Families Agency will be
transferred to proper management under the justice and police system. All
other functions can be transferred to private agencies.
- Virtually everyone admits they want to help people who are going
through undeservedly distressed times. Libertarianz policies put their money
back in their pockets so that they may do so, for whatever circumstances and
by whatever means they prefer. I therefore expect that existing private
welfare organisations will grow - such as Women's Refuge, Presbyterian
Support Services and The Salvation Army - and new agencies will evolve, much
as they did in the days before the state abrogated the role. Neighbours will
help neighbours, but because they want to, not because they are being
(Please see www.freeradical.co.nz/lotsofmaths/ for relevant budget details,
and for details of the proposed transitional welfare programme.)
"It's enough to make you vote Libertarianz!"
For further information please contact:
LIBERTARIANZ SPOKESMAN TO DEREGULATE WELFARE
(09) 368 1466, sally.deb@...