Monday, 14 May 2012

It’s only money

The world seems to be universally in turmoil at the moment over the Global Financial Crisis. Having said that; it is interesting to not e how conveniently the GFC is invoked when Governments are asked to do something that will benefit the largest number of their constituents. You will notice how it magically evaporates when they want to tell you how why it is fine to get tough with beneficiaries who should just ‘go out and get a job’ (where?).

It is truly sad that so often our worth, or quite often our self-worth is defined by the abundance or otherwise of our financial wealth. We’ve all heard people say, “It’s only money” or “It is easier for a rich man to go through the eye of a needle than for a camel to enter the Kingdom of God’ (or some such), but as Berry Gordy once wrote, “The best things in life are free; But you can give them to the birds and bees; I need money”

And although money is only a symbol of the material world; for most of us that’s the one we are living in. It can’t buy happiness but most of us would prefer to be unhappy with it than unhappy without it. But I digress....

Money exists in great abundance and despite the fact it has very little value, given most of it is fiat money and of no real value to most of us. Governments know this because they gave the orders to print the stuff, yet they still go to extraordinary lengths to make sure you and I and anyone else not part of their club don’t get our hands on any of it. They will spend large sums of money to ensure ordinary folk don’t get any. Sounds crazy? Well check this out.

Some of you may recall a fight between the Ministry of Health and parents of disabled persons who were caring for their offspring full-time. The MOH had decided these people were not entitled to any payment for the care they were giving despite the fact many had given up their paid jobs to look after their kids and were effectively easing the burden on local services. The issue had been in the ether since about 1999 and in 2010 a group of carers took their case to the Human Rights Review Tribunal. The Tribunal ruled the Ministry’s policy not to pay carers who were related to the patient discriminatory.

The Ministry was not prepared to give up and appealed the Tribunal’s ruling to the High Court where the Office of Human Rights backed the caregivers in early 2011. The High Court also ruled for the parents explaining that by being excluded from paid work meant they were being treated differently because of their family status and that treatment was discriminatory.

So the Misery of UnHealth has been through two hearings both of which would have cost a lot of money and they’ve lost both times. But do they give up and do the decent thing and pay these tireless and selfless workers? Do they ‘eck as like.

Immediately following their second loss the MOHOFOSOBOs up the ante (and the cost to you and me – but heck it’s only money) and appealed the High Court decision to the Court of Appeal.

The whole sorry saga arrived there in February this year and has been decided once again this week. The Court of Appeal confirmed the High Court’s decision in favour of the parents.

According to Fairfax Media this case has cost Crown Law $1.4M so far and the whisper is the mean-fisted, tight-arses are likely to appeal this decision to the Supreme Court, now. But then I don’t suppose we should expect anything else from the Minestrone run by that horrible little oik Toenail Vyle.

Now it’s important to remember here that this is the Government that sets great store by money. It’s never out of their conversation. The budget is to contain provisions for getting students to pay their loans back quicker; we can’t have public service television because  we don’t have the money for it; we need to sell our best performing state owned businesses to get some quick cash; we need to change the gambling laws so SkyCity can spend millions building a convention centre they will charge us to use......Listening to them you would think there was nothing else in the world except money and that money was the sole answer to all our problems. So if we believe them (and let’s face it we are a pretty damned credulous country); then how is it that the parent caregivers don’t need any money for what they are doing? Their job is tough mentally and often physically, is 24/7 and offers no perks. Compared to them our useless Government Ministers have got it easy and they insist on being paid six figures (not including the cents) to do their job. How would they like the roles reversed. I’ll bet they wouldn’t do their job for nowt. But why shouldn’t they? After all; it’s only money.

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