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MENZ Issues: news and discussion about New Zealand men, fathers, family law, divorce, courts, protests, gender politics, and male health.

Thu 15th May 2014

Budget 2014

Filed under: Boys / Youth / Education,Child Support,Gender Politics,Law & Courts — MurrayBacon @ 4:10 pm

Budget 2014

The Government has fairly successfully managed the costs and social upheaval associated with Christchurch Earthquake.

The budget has addressed large tax cuts to the top end of earners and generally not addressed tax evasion, particularly by corporations and wealthy individuals. These problems pervade the western world, as a result of ownership of political parties right across the spectrum, by extremely wealthy individuals. This conflict of interest can only be addressed, by tracking back all major donations to political parties and publishing them, after each election. This budget has not addressed these conflicts of interest. One example of such influence, is the Sky City “gambling deal”.

The budget has constructively addressed housing costs, supply and quality.

The budget has assisted parents, by subsidising costs of medical treatment, for children under 13 years.

In essence, the budget has assisted custodial parents and ignored the plight of non-custodial parents, in the main fathers. This is disastrous, as the largest single deficit causing problems for children, relate to the lack of effective fathers in their lives.
The budget has given assistance to custodial parents, in a form which doesn’t give any incentive to not deny the children access with their fathers. Children’s restricted access with fathers being the root cause of the biggest set of difficulties that hundreds of thousands of children face and imperil their appropriate social development.
The budget has given incentives to custodial parents, to increase the supply of children, but perversely, further encourages them to lower the quality of children supplied and their wellbeing.
Similarly, the budget has not addressed the quality failings in CYFs and in familycaught$, that endanger so many of our children. Parliament has never quality checked the performance of CYFs and familycaught$ and allows them to operate far outside of the legislation passed by Parliament.
Solving these major quality problems in familycaught$ and CYFs will require more than just legislation. A hands on direct management of familycaught$ and CYFs will be required to turn around these serious drags on NZ society to give proper benefit for all children.
The largest problem facing NZ’s development as a country, is the arrested development caused by the poorest skilled 15% of parents. This causes poor scholastic performance, poor employment performance and unemployment and limited wellbeing affecting many citizens quality of life. All of our caught$ require aggressive quality management, to raise them to acceptable minimum standards of performance.

This problem is presently growing, completely unmanaged.

MurrayBacon – axe murderer.

59 Responses to “Budget 2014”

  1. Downunder says:

    I think we need to be more specific in terms of how the budget might affect men and society.

    For example the Police budget was reduced last year and remains the same this year – in effect another decrease in the Police budget.

    At the same time immediately after the appointment of the new commissioner Police Minister Anne Tolley announced a new recruitment drive to get more women into Police.

    The questions here:

    Will more women in the Police make New Zealand a safer place?

    Is the current Police budget being hijacked for the sake of jobs for the girls?

    Is that what the public wants?

  2. MurrayBacon says:

    National has created a new type of father alienation, in the most family unfriendly manner possible.

    Government to boost parental leave provisions – summary

    Many people feel that paid parental leave is a sop to parents. So, way are the civilised countries far more generous than NZ in this regard? Why are the black capitalist countries even less generous than NZ, eg USA and Russia?

    Parents spending significant amounts of time with their newborn child has important social functions toward establishing relationships between family members. Biologists suggest that for these relationships to achieve the strength achieved in pre industrial revolution families, considerable time of close proximity is required for satisfactory attachment to be established between child and father. Having the father around in this time, reduces stress on the mother and improves her bonding with the new baby too.

    The industrial revolution places rather extreme pressures onto fathers, to work long hours away from the children and mother and on mothers to cope alone with their new child and older children too.

    Cold, hard cruel economics might find an optimum in very long work hours, but especially around the time of birth, such economic optimums leave a family of weakly established relationships, that falls apart under stress all too easily.

    So, it is actually in the Government’s interest, quite apart from the family’s, to encourage parents at all income levels to spend many hundreds of hours together, after the birth of a new baby. This is a good long term investment.

    Some countries offer only maternal leave. This is now considered rather out of date and too restricted.
    Some countries make available leave that can be shared between the parents. Often this approach results in the mother taking all of the parental leave and the father spending little extra time in the family group shortly after the birth. Very economically optimum, but again resulting in a weak family unit.

    Some countries have made available equal amounts of maternal and paternal leave and it is possible to relinquish, but not to transfer it between parents. This puts additional pressure on the father, to put extra time into the household at this time, despite the short term financial cost.

    The form of paid parental leave in the budget is the lowest financial cost, least socially effective form of paid parental leave, that could be given the name. It looks like the cheapest system that employers thought that they might be able to get away with. It is created with the same ethical mind as the Sky City gambling deal. I don’t see it as being aimed at families in a constructive manner.

    Maybe it is all that we can afford at the moment, but I cannot resist comparing the tax forgone on tax reductions for the wealthy $5 billion, the refusal to address tax evasion by the wealthy $5 billion, maybe more? and the spending on paid parental leave $0.043 billion a year.

    Family friendly, just a little bit!

    Apart from PPL, still not addressing the quality problems we have in parents, CYFs or caught$.

    NZ appears to have rushed madly off in an insane tangent to the rest of the world. Father’s parental leave is severely restricted to 1 or 2 weeks maximum. The mother’s partner may be substituted for the father, if the mother so prefers. This concept seems to be aimed to strengthen the “custodial” parent function and to ramp up a new level in father-alienation.

    Eligibility for Parental Leave
    Parental-Leave-Guide

    I would rather vote for the Looney Party or Screaming Lord Sutch, than National!
    Are there any party’s worth voting for, or safe to vote for?

  3. Ministry of Men's Affairs says:

    The links Murray Bacon provided (#2) were to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Development publications.

    The publication entitled ‘Who Can Take Parental Leave’ says:

    The primary entitlement for paid parental leave rests with the birth mother. Where you have assumed the care of a child you intend to jointly adopt, the primary carer can transfer some or all of the payment to their spouse/partner, if they are also eligible.

    Paid ‘parental’ leave is in fact yet another sexist policy introduced by the NZ government. Currently, mothers are entitled to 14 weeks paid leave and up to 12 months unpaid leave, while fathers are entitled to 2 weeks paid leave and can share in the 12 months unpaid leave if the mother allows it. It should be called ‘paid maternal leave’ as it is a specific entitlement for women.

    The other publication entitled ‘Parental Leave: A Guide for Employees, Employers, and the Self-Employed’ does often refer to ‘matermal leave’ so at least it tries to be honest. Yet it also states:

    As well as an employee’s rights under the Parental
    Leave and Employment Protection Act, an employee
    is protected against discrimination in employment
    on the grounds of their sex (including pregnancy
    and childbirth) under the Human Rights Act 1993
    and the Employment Relations Act 2000.

    Ok, so how are fathers NOT being subjected to discrimination in employment on the grounds of their sex when it comes to paid (and unpaid) maternal leave?

    The idea of providing paid maternity leave for much longer than paternity leave may seem fair enough at first consideration. We may be labelled as churlish for accusing the policy of being sexist. But sexist it is, and the ethics of the policy are not as cut-and-dried as they may first appear. Fathers are still much more often the primary financial providers to families so their reduction in income when they have to take time off after births deserves to be reimbursed at least as much as it is for mothers.

    Also, as Murray Bacon argues, the system of paid maternal leave functions as a social-engineering programme to increase bonding between women and their children and reduce bonding between men and their children. These are huge social and ethical issues.

  4. ENOUGH says:

    So I’ve just reviewed the formula for children over 13.

    HOW does a kid cost this much? If it’s both parents that means the child costs $23180 per year? WHAT A JOKE. What does an adult get on the benefit per year? We are being milked and treated as substandard citizens by our own government.

    Income bracket: $79,022 to $105,361 $11,590 plus 10 cents for each dollar over $79,021

    I can’t want for someone to go on a rampage over this. Someone will snap. IRD will have to pay their staff risk money soon. Complicit and evil is what this system and it’s servants are.

  5. MurrayBacon says:

    Dear MoMa, you have discussed father’s rights, whereas I tried to discuss in terms of strength and value of family relationships.

    This may sound abstruse, but in the long term, it is the quality of family relationships that promotes the healthy development of the children and the two adults too. So, far from just being politically correct, this approach protects the long term interests of all of the members of the family. It is the quality of relationships that supports functionality, as against dys-functionality that occurs when poor mental health impacts onto families.

    Depression affects almost all new parents to some degree and a large number quite seriously. If even quite mild depression is affecting one or both parent’s, then it partially blocks their ability to listen effectively to their newborn and to each other. The family unit do need considerable additional time, to adjust positively to changes.

    If we fail to make sure that families have this time to learn and adjust, then we leave a set of relationships that will be much more likely to fragment and fall apart, in the following years.

    The fact that some couples get through this time without PPL is not a reason to say that we are doing well enough. On the contrary, probably 30% or more families take a lot of relationship damage through first birth especially, but even through subsequent births.

    Certainly, many families do survive this transition without obvious drama. Particularly couples who have good mental health, good negotiating skills and strong identities. Couples less fortunate may be only waiting for some additional stress and they will explode apart.

    The time of birth is pivotal and a critical opportunity to strengthen, rather than risk the family relationships.

    If we work long hours, then shouldn’t this give us the opportunity to have critical time to rebuild families, rather than nail us into those long hours just for work?

    The civilised countries, those that don’t build their identities on ability to deal extra-judicial death at great distance or who jail huge swathes of their population, or who sentence to death differently depending on blood group, do value all of the relationships in a family triad, so that father’s relationships with children are naturally respected as much as mother – child, without question. I understand that Denmark and Scandinavian countries encourage paternity leave every bit as much a maternity leave and don’t allow paternity leave to be surrendered, to get more maternity leave. (Let alone 1 or 2 weeks versus 52 weeks, like John Scrooge’s NZ. I am astonished at how generous he is to the rich.)

    NZ is in this category, if we inspect the Care of Children Act (passed by Parliament in 2004, but active only occasionally in some of Judge Bashier’s courtrooms or out of working hours). Looking at what actually happens, NZ only attempts to look as though it is civilised.

    Different couples have different degrees of need, but this shouldn’t be a reason to deny this critical family time, just because some people need it less. Family time spent together promotes understanding, constructive negotiation and protects good mental health.

    I don’t go so far as to say that all parental leave should be Government paid. However, when you look at costs to Government, of family breakups, then healthy economics suggests that a lot more should be Government paid, than John Scrooge can see.

    So, Ministry of Men’s Affairs, I castigate thee, for only discussing equality and men’s / father’s rights and accepting reduced PPL for fathers.

    I suggest that family welfare arguments justify a much more aggressive approach to cultivating, developing and protecting all of the relationships in the family. This leads to an argument for at least equal father’s PPL rights, based on avoiding costs that otherwise drop onto Government and society.

    In teaching parenting skills, some advocated just teaching mothers. In quite a few cases, the mothers seemed very slow to learn or even made no progress. A different advocate pointed out that if the courses included fathers, then even if the mother was a slow learner, that the husband over time could show these skills to the mother, so it helped the message to get through. Now that many men are providing caregiving for small children, all of these arguments for caring for both parents are even more essential.

  6. MurrayBacon says:

    #5 and #6 Enough:

    discussion of child [and spousal] support, under Post Policy

    As the amount paid is based crudely on the number of children and mainly on the ability to pay and the maximum payment is set far beyond the actual cost of children, it is really just a tax. The maximum payment is set so far beyond the reasonable costs of children, in a futile attempt to recover DPB payments from the few fathers with extremely high incomes. The payments are made the same for DPB or mothers otherwise supported, for an illusion of “fairness”.

  7. Bruce S says:

    @Enough (#4) – the IRD child support model is only there IF you cannot reach an agreement with your ex over support costs. Any chance you can avoid the IRD rort?

    This from the IRD website:

    You can make a private child support arrangement

    Many parents living apart choose to make private arrangements for the care and financial welfare of their children. The child support scheme is a back-up for parents living apart who are unable or unwilling to make private arrangements.

  8. MurrayBacon says:

    Dear Bruce S, when the fallback is set wildly to the advantage of the custodial parent, then the fallback becomes the default.

    It comes back to values, if the custodial parent values cash, over the healthy development of the children, then maximising cash take becomes the game at play.

    If the non-custodial parent can reduce their income, but survive life’s expenses, they can gain a little manipulative power back. This is quite difficult to do and very few fathers can pay a mortgage, child [and spousal] support, food, car and entertain children, with any space to consider reducing income to be able to spend more time with their children.

    When both parents value the healthy development of the children, they want to share costs and share time with the children. This is where the negotiated child support agreement comes into its own. I believe that just under 10% of parents can do this? This becomes quite a sensitive indicator of separating mother’s values, mental health and parenting skills.

    In my opinion, seeing non-custodial parents primarily as cash providers, rather than as developers and carers for children, greatly hazards our children’s development. I would guess that for each $1 transferred, there is probably $5 loss of quality of life dropped onto the children, compared to healthy development.

    The same thing, said in a different way, if one parent has some degree of poor mental health and/or poor parenting skills, then when the children regularly see both parents, the children are surprisingly adept at taking the best from both of their parents. This protective process is greatly impeded, when cash rules over the children having frequent and significant access with both parents. Of course, after a separation stress event, this regular access becomes more important, not less important – as dangerous mothers see it.

    The whole concept and values of child [and spousal] support can be seen as a huge and dangerous experiment, on how much the quality of parenting can be reduced across a huge population and allowing the consequences for the children to be measured in school performance, suicides, crime rates, employment performance. If you applied for ethical permission to carry out such an experiment, you would lose your job (anywhere except North Korea).

    Many solo mothers like to say “see how well I am doing with the children? They don’t need their father at all.” Short term evaluation, probably unskilled too. The long term evaluation shows much increased anti-social behaviour, much higher suicide rates, poorer physical health, poorer school achievement, poorer work performance.. Only an idiot takes such a short term view. familycaught$ takes this short term view, over protecting children’s long term outcomes, but then it has to take care of it’s own paramount short term financial interests.

    Thanks Bruce S.

  9. OMG You're (&*)^*( says:

    Had_Enough

    So I’ve just reviewed the formula for children over 13.
    HOW does a kid cost this much? If it’s both parents that means the child costs $23180 per year? WHAT A JOKE. What does an adult get on the benefit per year? We are being milked and treated as substandard citizens by our own government.
    Income bracket: $79,022 to $105,361 $11,590 plus 10 cents for each dollar over $79,021

    You think you’ve got it tough. Between my ex and I we probably earn $220,000. Sounds great., eh.
    According to IRD, it’ll therefore cost (for one child 12 and under)
    —> $131,703 and over : $16,068 (with no additional c/$; ie its reached the max cost/child).

    OK, so how come, IRD, I’m being taxed over $20,000 this year, all going to the ex, to cover her $16,038 expenses?
    Where do I sign up to ‘go postal?’

  10. Ministry of Men's Affairs says:

    Bruce S (#8): The IRD website may well claim that the CS Act is only for separated parents who did not make their own arrangements, but nobody here should live under any illusion that an agreement they reached with their ex about child support will be respected by either IRD or the Family Court when their ex later claims they should have been paid more. We have had accounts here on MENZ Issues from fathers who have been ordered to pay retrospective so-called ‘child support’ despite having paid according to both parties’ previous agreement.

  11. Ministry of Men's Affairs says:

    Murray Bacon (#6): Go castigate thyself. Castigation doesn’t serve much useful purpose here and you might benefit from some exploration concerning your tendency to patronize certain others.

    Your points have merit, but so do other people’s points including MoMA’s concerning the duplicitous position our governments have shown towards gender equality. Indeed, MoMA’s previous reply made no mention of men’s rights, but a challenge regarding sexist policies in paid parental leave implicitly subsumes many of the points you make.

  12. MurrayBacon says:

    Dear MoMa, I apologise, I was loosely saying – in my opinion, you are spot on. But I think your argument is stronger than you appear to think it is. Therefore, go for it!

    Cheers, MurrayBacon.

  13. MurrayBacon says:

    TVNZ News showed noisy protests outside of Sky City Casino, where John Key was giving a post budget speech. (I didn’t see the whole item.)

    Did anyone see who organised this protest?

  14. Bruce S says:

    @MurrayBacon (#14); Auckland Action Against Poverty is what they called themselves. We need to export them all to Calcutta for a month; then they’d understand what poverty was all about. Morons!

  15. MurrayBacon says:

    Dear Bruce,

    I was in tears watching it. They got 200 or 300 people out at fairly short notice. They were well organised, Maryan Street was able to be interviewed, with the demonstrators behind her. Excellent use of media opportunity. There were quite a few students there too and I seem to remember students being much easier to get out for a demo than fathers. I was green with envy.

    I agree about poverty.

    However, the largest issue that takes parent’s down into effective poverty, is lack of executive decision skills, resulting in waste of the resources that they do have. Mental illness is often a factor in this. I know that I am boring, but we need to help all people in our society to be able to lead effective lives, even with the problems that they have. Stigma may stop many people from coming forward for treatment or assistance, but if “we” all came forward, there wouldn’t be enough treatment anyway.

    Oops, of course I mean “they”…. he he he…..

    MurrayBacon – axe murderer.

  16. Downunder says:

    Now let’s not have arguments about comparative poverty – that’s simply divisive.

    This needs to be looked at from the point of view of deprivation, which is the uniting factor.

    A student is indebted to the state for education, deprived of parents’ collective knowledge, just as fathers are deprived by the act of child support.

    You cannot have any sort of rebellion without a uniting commonality, just as you cannot have a successful political party without commitment to it’s core principles.

  17. OMG You're (&*)^*( says:

    Official ‘poverty’ is a relative term, and completely unsolvable. To line everyone up in order of income, and then say ‘ right, those of you who fall below 60% of the median (the usually-quoted thresh-hold) are poor’, is self-fulfilling prophecy – it cannot be solved. If you lifted the incomes of all of those that fall below, to = 61% of the median, you might think that you’ve solved it. However if you then line everyone up again, guess what! The median will have moved, and you will still have people falling below 60% of the new median!
    [The only absolute way to solve it, is to have everyone's incomes identically the same].
    To freely advertise that ’2 in 5′ of our children are ‘poor’ is nonsense, misrepresentative, and actually down-right dangerous.

    Now ‘real’ poverty, is far more complex. People can live on a benefit, and not be ‘poor’, if they manage their resources wisely. That might mean living frugally (when did that become a swear-word?); growing their own veges; going without ‘luxuries’; trading and bartering their time and effort; and so forth. People on the median income or above, can still be ‘poor’, through lack of financial wisdom and thrift; succumbing to pressure to spend, up-size, up-grade etc; turning ‘luxuries’ into ‘necessities’, and so forth.

    To all those people who are apparently ‘poor’; I will freely give a brand new garden spade, fork and 4 packs of vege seeds to each of the first 1,000 beneficiaries that come to me and ask for it.

    Guess what? I can guarantee they’ll all sit un-used; rusting away; sold off for a couple of bucks.
    Every excuse of how it is too hard, they’ve got no garden, they’re too busy etc will come forth. Some will try the first season, and give up as soon as they have to weed, or till the soil, or what ever.
    No garden? Some people with ‘no garden’ do just fine creating hydroponic operations in attics and garages and shed! Not allowed to create a garden? Bollocks. Get some old tyres and create one.

    And the best excuse of all, that automatically excuses any ‘poor’ person from even trying? How dare we tell ‘poor’ people how to live, or spend their benefit $$$, or to grow their own veges! Better instead to just give them more hand-outs and hand-ups.
    How dare the Aussie government in their budget last week, tell young people to earn or learn (ie the 6-month no-benefit rule they are introducing for younger people). No;
    Better to let them just sit on a benefit, and enter life-time poverty and dependency.

    Can’t teach a man to fish now, can we?

  18. Bruce S says:

    @OMG You’re (&*)^*( (#18) – absolutely spot on.

    I would venture to suggest that to have everyone’s incomes identically the same would still not solve the problem of self inflicted deprivation. Some folks can not figure out and prioritize critical needs versus discretionary spend. I need SKY TV / beer / smokes / flutter at the TAB / rather than I need to feed and clothe my kids, pay the rent, pay the power bill…..

    It just seems (to me) some folks consider handouts as an actual entitlement but just not enough. When the size of the “entitlement” does not match the sense of expectation; then we hear the cry of poverty.

  19. MurrayBacon says:

    #17 Downunder suggests to look at deprivation, rather than relative poverty. I have suggested that mental health and general lack of executive decision making (classic symptom emotional neglect of the baby) are often causes of poverty, more so than lack of resources (including Government benefits).

    Downunder lists several deprivations, which are both relationships, that could be protected by the Care of Children Act (passed by Parliament in 2004, but almost never brought into action in familycaught$).

    You cannot have any sort of rebellion without a uniting commonality, just as you cannot have a successful political party without commitment to it’s core principles.

    It is not just father’s role that is being fragmented and destroyed, but even the broad interests of families are seriously under threat. Family First work hard to promote family friendly values and policies to politicians, but with surprisingly little effect. They have thousands of members, most seriously addled by christianity, they are well resourced, professionally run, but still families interests are being damaged by politicians in social policies. Complete, working families are being milked by Government, to pay extra social supports to those who portray themselves as solo.

    In UK, this economic tax disadvantage for married couples has become so great, that tax department data for married couples diverges from census data by over 1 million persons. This discrepancy has been debated for several years, as it slowly grew. When it passed the million mark, it could no longer be dismissed as a minor error. 30 years ago I worked out that to be married in UK had a tax penalty worth 8 Pounds a night – if that was a tax for reliable sex then I couldn’t see that it was worth 8 Pounds a night whether you had sex or not (usually not in UK). I was tempted to sue the minister who married my wife and I, for not warning us, but we were married in NZ….

    Together families are very efficient and this is being taxed away, to provide extra support to those who declare themselves as single, for tax and benefit purposes.

    Family First work professionally, have a large number of members, but attract surprisingly little support from politicians.

    So, if they have difficulties, what chance could the ragamuffins from Father’s Coalition have?
    What unifying themes or core principles can we highlight? or are we doomed to wither away as we are taxed to nuffink?
    MurrayBacon – depressed axe murderer.

  20. ENOUGH says:

    We want change? Clearly we know we have JUST Cause. In this I think the only thing that will work is shock.. Extremism to shock them into being reasonable and fair. Extremism to make the whole collection process untenable. The IRD servants that carry this process out would all lose their jobs if actual change occurred. They throw resource at this because it earns the IRD easy money relative to effort. I say we need to increase the effort to manage this system and make it less profitable for the corporate to collect. We can’t beat them with lawyers (they hold the printing press) and we lack the collective will/numbers to beat them via legislative changes in parliament. The only way this horrid structure of repression will stop is if someone/a group of someones starts targeting the beast’s servants in a way that creates fear and is very public. Only then would it get noticed by the media. If its servants become fearful they will demand higher salaries and the whole structure will become untenable. They would also have to invest millions in securing their personnel whilst at work, in transit from work and whilst they were at home. The American revolution came about due to unlawful taxes by the British. Violence is really the only thing that works unfortunately. The monolithic beast doesn’t care one wit about us. They only want their salaries to continue. Justice matters naught to them.

  21. ENOUGH says:

    So whoever out there that is reading this and close to breaking point/suicide (apparently there are ten suicides a week in West Auckland alone, the majority of them men). You have Just Cause. Before you do what you must, please don’t go thinking your actions have gone ignored and forgotten. We have all gone through what you are experiencing. Powerlessness to make it stop impacts us all.

  22. ENOUGH says:

    On the suicide note.. Are there statistics out there around child support tax and suicide? Has anyone considered the loss to society that such a death brings?

  23. ENOUGH says:

    Seriously, can any of you above making all those valid arguments based on reason see any ‘reasonable way’ for us to bring about change?

    What would need to be done to make them stop this? How does legislation change? How long does it take? What resources are required?

    I’ve gone over this in my head.. Over and over. The Collective Will isn’t with us and the IRD beast know it and it can’t change internally because if the employees themselves were to behave fairly they would lose their jobs or any quota incentive they have. They simply state they are just acting as collectors for the government. All moral choices/changes need to be made via parliament and legislation. The IRD aren’t the holders of the moral code.. In other words, don’t get angry at us. Blame parliament.

    But this is not true. They are part of decision process. We need to make sure IRD servants know they are complicit. We need to make sure they know what harm they cause.

    The only way to do that is to harm them in some way, ideally financially. I have no idea how one would do this.. This is just theory. I note this isn’t the forum for such a subject. All I’m saying is that I’ve had many a chat with men in my situation. You know how you are feeling. I agree with you.

  24. MurrayBacon says:

    IRD don’t publish their suicide statistics for their staff, or for their clients. We can get some idea from occasional newspaper stories.

    At the macro level, national suicide statistics put the rise in men’s suicides since 1980 as about 300 per year. (Thus if we ignore improvements in psychiatric treatments and drugs which should reduce suicides, then maybe the increase is mostly due to familycaught$ and separation processes.)

    From listening to counsellors talk, I might guess that familycaught$ trigger the lion’s share and ird-cs somewhat less than 50%, say nearly 100 suicides per year. This is likely to fluctuate year to year.

    Staff suicides might be about 3 per year?

    Government have been very careful to not consider the costs to society, economic and social, of men’s suicides. Dead men don’t talk, well their suicide notes do, just most people don’t listen to them. Bill Zeller Chris Mackney: suicide note at AVFM

    I have tried to estimate the suicide numbers, but the calculations are rough estimates only – DV Act submission.

  25. Downunder says:

    Poverty is an interesting situation. Some people exist in ‘official poverty’ quite happily. They don’t have great expectations of life and as OMG suggests some people think it should not exist and would not exist if they were gifted what they consider to be an entitlement that would remove them from the bounds of that poverty. There are plenty of ways to remove real poverty but most times it takes a lot more than the gift of a fork and spade and the expectation that they might be used wisely.

    There is a difference between poverty and being impoverished – i.e. you are forced to exist in poverty by external forces you have no control over.

    Such is the case with child support. It is not a desire, a consequence of laziness, or necessarily bad management that creates such situations.

    Along with this is the loss of authority over your income, loss of control over your bank account, loss of security over your assets and often the loss of relationship with the children associated with these circumstances and as we have seen recently, the restriction on freedom of movement.

    It doesn’t surprise that men kill themselves or move on to a more comfortable set of circumstances – little consideration is given to the emotional trauma that men face when others choose to subjugate their free will and impose a discriminatory set of circumstances that isolates them from the society they were once part of and able to participate in.

    These men now live in another world, they now see the world from a different perspective. Of course they do, how can you have so much arbitrarily taken from you and not be a different person with a different view on life.

    The child support system is mostly a failure and every time it fails, it changes the lives of people it touches and for the worse. Every time the child support system fails, our society fails a little more.

    It is convenient to choose not to admit this, but the child support system is a major contributor to the degradation of our society, as is poverty, and while politicians fail to take constructive approaches to addressing these situations they can expect more than a little of shit on their arm as happened with Act MP John Banks outside court today.

    As ENOUGH suggests, they will pay with blood.

  26. OMG You're (&*)^*( says:

    First, I don’t think it helps men’s causes to tout unsupported stats around Family Court , child support, etc, and suicide. They simple reality is that, most of the time, whilst there may be a link, it is usually impossible to prove a direct causal influence between men’s issues and suicide.
    So a man goes through a marital break-up; even has allegations of violence against him; maybe even loses access etc; and then tops himself, it is still shaky ground to label the suicide linked.
    The same man may be doing drugs or drinking heavily; their respective lobby groups will also cite the same suicide as caused by the evils of drink or drugs.
    The man might have a fatal head-on – men’s groups claim it as a family-court related suicide. No-one knows – the car may have been defective, unsafe; or maybe he was simply blinded by opposing high-beams or distracted by his cellie. No one really knows.

    It goes like this: every year, we are told something like 10,000 deaths occur each year from smoking and related causes; another 5,000 occur from cancer; and so on. A couple of years back, I set about aggregating these ’causes’ of death; and before long, it was clear we were not only having no-one die from natural causes, but in fact we had more deaths from other causes than actual deaths, due to double counting. How? Well if an obese smoker with diabetes has a heart-attack, each of those three concerns cite his death as due to their cause.

    Why this pre-amble? Well it would be great to have proven stats. Maybe if there was a way of getting men to write an open suicide note addressed directly to the Family Court before the event? I don’t know how you could ever effect that, though. Maybe some guys would be so desperate prior to committing suicide, that they’d love to place the cause squarely on the Family Court’s shoulders.
    But then, if you were ever counselling someone to do this, shouldn’t you be counselling them against suicide?
    Maybe a PHD student could correlate suicides to Family Court cases? Same issues that I started with still apply. But maybe its a start?

  27. ENOUGH says:

    Downunder.. Couldn’t be said more clearly thank you

    These men now live in another world, they now see the world from a different perspective. Of course they do, how can you have so much arbitrarily taken from you and not be a different person with a different view on life

    I think part of the problem is that there are so many angles that need to be looked at/fixed. From the legislative side, to the greedy recipients of child support; that without moral conscience take what is not theirs to take. There are multiple ‘pillars’ holding this system up.

    Our attention is drawn left-right and centre like an elephant being attacked by a pride of lions. We know not which one to put effort on to stamp out. So we strike out at all with futility being the end result.

    We can’t change human greed. So making people change their greedy ways via guilt (doing what is right) wont work. Nor do we have an army of lawyers because we are being bled of all our surplus money before we can touch it; so we can’t fight them in the courts. Nor is there a politician with ‘balls’ from within the power brokering parties willing to stand up for what is right; so we can’t win via the legislature/parliament (because we are too few as a voting group).

    The only weak pillar is the debt collectors. The Human decision makers acting out the commands of the legislature. The IRD.

    I think our effort needs to be focused on the IRD. Break them and their formula and they can’t collect. Break them and the greedy can’t collect ‘entitlements’. Break them and the legislation will be forced to change. The IRD is the key pillar needing to be attacked.

    But before any of that one needs to provide the group with some sort of moral underpinning. A manifesto. This manifest would state what we want changed and how so that we aren’t just a blindly bleating. Yes, in most cases, we have a moral obligation to pay child support. But the way this is done.. the formula… is corrupt. What they do is blatant theft and oppression.

    We should also not jump on the hate feminist bandwagon. That is reactive and non reasoning. Feminism in it’s purest form is just equality. We should find a new name for the philosophical foundations that the current crop of policy makers are shaping our society with. Mary Wollstonecraft would be sickened with what is happening. This is not equal. We are not being treated equally.

    Just a start.. Clearly I’ve thought about this a lot

  28. MurrayBacon says:

    Dear OMG You’re (&*)^*(, one father more or less did what you suggest, certainly the outcome is the same. If you are interested to see, contact me in person. There are also quite a few suicide notes which have been published, along with the circumstances.Please be aware that mothers are about as likely to suicide, if they are wrongfully denied access as fathers, one example being Juliette Gilbert.

    Suicide is difficult to research, for the reasons that you quote. Certainly, one could wait until proven statistics are released by Government or Saint Peter. (The latter not being subject to the Official Information Act, but more likely to honour it than NZ judges.) For myself, I would prefer to be more proactive, in addressing these issues, so that the numbers killed are relatively minimised. Why not?

    Different people have quite different resilience to triggers, sudden events which may tip some people to suicide. Research suggests that most of a person’s resilience factors are laid down in genes and the parenting they received before 3 years old. Causation (law)

    However, I suggested that by taking the difference between suicide rates prior to familycaught$ starting work about 1975, compared to suicide rates now, that the difference may be assumed to result from familycaught$ and ird-cs triggers?

    However, in law you take your victim as you find him. Eggshell skull

    Ethically, we are under a duty to encourage parents to stay alive, for themselves and for their children. I have had two experiences where parents refused all attempts at help.

    Maybe you could justify your research by saying that by obtaining reliable data, you would in the longer term be saving lives. I wouldn’t want to operate on this basis.

  29. ENOUGH says:

    Agreed regarding suicide.. We as the victims here know what goes on in our own heads… We correlate (perhaps falsely.. but I actually think not) that a lot of men commit suicide over this. Losing your children is hard. Having no power to stop them is harder. Then being forced to live shackled to unjust debt for the rest of your healthy years is even harder. It obviously alters our perspective/biases when we read stats on suicide.

    Someone committing self immolation in the middle of Aotea square whilst screaming the ‘IRD is evil’ would send a message I think and it would be doing a service for thousands of men out there experiencing this hateful thing. And yes I’ve considered it. But that way I lose even more than I am now.

  30. Downunder says:

    Maybe child support issues will be an election issue in 2017 if the new computer system is not functioning.

  31. Downunder says:

    First, I don’t think it helps men’s causes to tout unsupported stats around Family Court , child support, etc, and suicide. They simple reality is that, most of the time, whilst there may be a link, it is usually impossible to prove a direct causal influence between men’s issues and suicide.

    OMG – this can also be viewed from the other side. You’re saying; here is a death, now where is the evidence that a set of circumstances caused a suicide. Male suicide in New Zealand isn’t an age old problem; it is a very recent development in the history of this country, so what’s changed, what are the possible or probable causes.

    Murray Bacon has written posts on suicidal triggers. The circumstances that lead to suicidal thinking. For example ‘loss of self worth’. These are well established sets of circumstances and when applied to mens’ situations the reality is why wouldn’t you have suicides – because they are men? Men are meant to be too tough to be affected by such circumstances?

    Men should accept the circumstances they find themselves in and accept that male human rights exist at the whim of those who rule? (Nobody cared about male child conscription into armed conflict in Nigeria but kidnap 200 school girls and we have an international taskforce in operation – extreme example I know, but it’s the prevailing attitude, you get my point)

    Effectively we have gone back to the days of pre war-journalism, when they shot ‘cowards’ in the field to maintain discipline; they were simply a casualty of war. When journalists tagged along that practice had to stop or it would have been reported in newspapers that officers were shooting their own troops.

    It is journalists (in the present sense) and writers (post event) that hold society to account for its behaviour but in the case of suicide our State has legalised this form of death by censoring the reporting and investigation of it.

    Suicide in this case is also the sharp end of one wedge although it is usually not seen this way. The same set of circumstances causes a range of behaviour from aggression and depression to abandonment or suicide.

    Historically, when suicides were a rare event there was an associated social stigma – embarrassment and shame. Now there are hundreds on men dying each year yet we haven’t changed the way we react to suicide, excepting the legal restrictions.

    By allowing this stigma to continue to exist and not talk about male suicide then I put it to you that we are doing men a great disservice. We are allowing that group of dead men to be separated off from the wedge and that conveniently allows those other men in the same circumstances who haven’t killed themselves to be more easily attacked and stripped of their financial equity in society.

    These men do not receive the protection of the law, of open court, access to justice or preservation of their human rights or even the acknowledgement of the media, they are ridiculed and persecuted across the web pages of news sites and in printed media.

    Then ask those journalists that have tried to do their job and they will tell you how they have been vilified and threatened for writing that particular story.

    If there is an irony here, it is that in the theatre of war, officers stopped shooting men for fear of exposure by the media, but in peace time it is the journalist that is threatened by the ‘officers’ of society who do not want change forced upon them.

    We’ll just keep killing our own men and bring in a few more immigrants to replace them – but no, I can’t quite see Winston Peters out on the hustings with a campaign to save our males instead of replacing them with imports.

  32. MurrayBacon says:

    #27 OMG You’re (&*)^*(

    First, I don’t think it helps men’s causes to tout unsupported stats around Family Court , child support, etc, and suicide.

    All areas of research go through a life cycle, from postulations, gathering some evidence, weighing evidence, critical challenge and some theories go on to be well accepted and some just die.

    Suicide is particularly difficult, as overt planned experiments will usually not pass ethical committees. So only observational studies of general society and subgroups set up by natural experiments (eg applied familycaught$ to NZ and the impacts on mothers, fathers and children were…).

    A confounding effect is that society is changing continuously, so a 20 or 30 year observational study will only give data that is 20 or 30 years old.

    I gave my estimates of men’s suicide, but if you are willing to put in some time, why don’t you look over the data and come up with your own estimates? I am pleased to make available such raw data as there is, so that would save you most of the time required to study these issues. For a first cut analysis, year 11 introductory statistics would probably suffice, you don’t need a PhD for this sort of analysis.

    If you recall, deaths from tobacco was debated for many years before an agreed consensus was found. There was diabolical manipulation of public information by the companies with conflicted interest — see The Insider film with Russell Crowe for a graphic depiction.

    Similarly, both ird-cs and familycaught$ try to divert public concern, by showing that they have looked into “the problem” and there is nothing to be concerned about. While people die singly and in disgrace, they are pretty safe from accountability.

    When family shoot back, then the dynamics change in a moment. Also, private prosecutions seem to be helping Government get back onto more ethical tracks, lets use this tool to help familycaught$ and ird-cs!

  33. too tired says:

    You can’t simply fight the IRD either as with new rules they will take anything they want from wages, and most places wont pay cash.
    One way would be to get alot of supporters into those jobs at IRD and slowly undernmine the process from within. If we had a sympathiser doing our reviews etc? Also a high tech guy could erase all of the debt? Just thinking outside the box.
    Getting someone into parliment would help?
    There must be a way to simply overwhelm the public with knowledge of the impacts of CS and family courts etc? A smear campain, social media and poster/flyer campians. Cheap things we can all do locally. Printing T-Shirts, bumper stickers?

  34. MurrayBacon says:

    Dear too tired,

    I think Downunder has well summarised the crushing reality of familycaught$/ird-cs, at #26.

    Jim Bagnall summarised the same things in a single word, identity. It took me quite a while to understand this, he is spot on.

    At #32, Downunder compares the propaganda dynamics in WW1 and WW2, to the propaganda dynamics that separated fathers face. Sometimes I wonder if these systematic crush forces on men will only be sorted out, when the numbers of women crushed too become significant. Society is pretty casual about men in general, just the same as most men are.

    We do need to turn around our self value and bite back, to put our wider self interest before serving society and our own honour.

    too tired says:

    Getting someone into Parliament would help?

    Get real, what are the chances of getting a man into parliament?

  35. ENOUGH says:

    I don’t think we can reason our way out of this situation. There is no one willing to listen. The lack of willingness is there because we aren’t really fighting. We are rolling over like dogs and taking it quietly. Letting them ruin our lives as if it was our rightful punishment for fathering a child.

    Regarding weakness of the IRD. I wasn’t saying the technical/non human part of the IRD system. I was referring to the human component. The technical is surrounded by layers of back up. Their data is probably backed up in triplicate at least with disaster recover systems ready to switch over at a moments notice. Entire buildings will be vacant with empty desks waiting. Not joking. This is my area.

    Their weakness is the human decision makers. Target them and they can’t make decisions. A human is accountable at every step of the milking process. I have no workable idea’s around how a group would target them. I’m open to ideas. And I’m actually being stupid saying this in a public forum. But I care not. They need to know. They need to hear how angry the likes of me are about this. Repression must be answered. I only have one life and they are unjustly harming it. My right to exist is sacrosanct.

    It’s obvious that there will never be justice via the current methods we are fighting them with. Only anger, in this case in the form of revolt, can force change/force the public to see what evil they have allowed to exist. Yes I know this is inflammatory rhetoric. But what else is there left? They ignore us in the court and we can’t afford lawyers to make it costly/not profitable for them. And men’s rights are a no go, non pc, and so far off any politicians radar as a means to gaining power. There’s more interest in women with breast cancer, more interest with stray cats for that matter.

    What tools out there exist to make this change in a reasonable timeframe? Does a whole generation of men have to be doomed to suffer? Ashamed to fight back? It’s a complicated situation for each man. To fight will ruin any chance we have of seeing our kids. To not fight condemns us to a life of debt and minimal access if at all. In this case possession of the child really is 9/10th of the law and due to ‘natural’ reasons the courts almost always favour the woman, even if that woman doesn’t have custody and the child is in the care of others.

    We also can’t fight in public because that would destroy our careers. Something we cling to because that’s all that’s left, our only hope for digging ourselves out. It’s just too non pc a subject. It has to be made open. The only way is shock I think.

    So all we/I have left is inflammatory rhetoric where the audience is other men like myself. Hoping for someone to see the flame and do something with it. To Lead. Whatever it takes. I personally know perhaps 10 males such as myself that would do what it takes.

  36. Downunder says:

    So all we/I have left is inflammatory rhetoric where the audience is other men like myself.

    The audience is far more than other men ‘like you’, Enough. There are plenty of watchers making sure there is nothing happening that threatens them or their gravy trains.

  37. MurrayBacon says:

    If we discuss communication and motivation difficulties, it is not to check off items on our suicide to do list, it is to explore the issues that we need to address and challenge, to find a sensible path out of this stupid situation.

    If we are depressing, I apologise. The goal is useful action. However, being realistic, many actions thus far have shown little or no useful outcome. This is not to depress ourselves, but to realistically understand what we face and to help choose the right tools for going forward.

    I do like the image of the train of Government going completely off the rails, Tangiwai style and fat politicians and legal workers drowning, coughing and spluttering in thick, rich gravy, where they could have swum away in water.

    Cheers, MurrayBacon.

  38. Daniel says:

    #23 The law preventing reporting of details of suicides suppresses the kind of statistics you are talking about. There are many out there who don’t want the topic of family law/child support linked to suicide statistics for their own selfish reasons.

  39. Daniel says:

    #36 I’m pretty sure we have all gone through the same kind of thoughts but we are up against more than just the IRD’s ground staff. Remember someone gave them the rules that they enforce, many women’s groups are lobbying and throwing their toys out of the cot to make sure those rules aren’t questioned by the rulemakers, many women and some men are working hard to enforce groupthink ideas such as deadbeat dads you must pay for your children men abuse women etc and of course the media always goes with the flow of groupthinkers. If you did do something drastic the groupthinking media would have you portrayed as a disaffected weirdo not as a hero.
    This is why we roll over like dogs I’m afraid. I don’t have the skills to incite a rebellion but I would join one for sure, the trouble is that you need numbers too big to ignore – I’ve seen tv footage of groups of a dozen men protesting about these issues but it just looks pathetic, sorry guys I know you were trying while I did nothing but that’s how the media and the public mind works.

  40. Downunder says:

    @Murray Bacon Yes, identity is a critical element and that’s what I am getting at here:

    I think no less of those men who shared their experiences with me, it was a temporary state of mind, not an illness as is sometimes the case. They were isolated, both by their experience and a fear of their perception of society’s view of them.

    But there is the difficulty; so many men who are not able to speak for themselves, believing in a social opinion that is unsympathetic to ‘their situation’ and their state of mind.

    This is not only a loss of personal identity, that is valued, but also the substitution of a singular socially unacceptable identity which is accompanied by rejection and ridicule.

  41. ENOUGH says:

    not sure about the numbers part tbh. You just need to make it too expensive for them. it would only take a coordinated and hard to isolate few to disrupt this machine. It reliance on our compliance to continue. IRD is a business. Taking from us is really good business..

    When we discuss rules set by rulemakers. It’s not done in isolation. The rulemakers assess constantly what their people be asked/coerced/brainwashed ideologically into doing.. Those people acting out the instructions are an important part of the decision process. I know this analogy isn’t the same. But would you consider the workers/soldiers that ran the likes of Auschwitz to be complicit? Would those camps be able to function without said workers/soldiers agreement/collusion/buy in? In that much the answer is the same.

    We need to talk more about rebellion and less about semantics. We all know this is an unjust system. Everyone knows. Everyone I speak to says.. “Well that’s not fair”. But all think that because it is done by govt that we can’t do anything about it. But we can. Target the cogs of the machinery. the people who run it.

    Re ground staff. I don’t mean the receptionists etc. I mean anyone case manager up. They are fully aware of the harm they cause. They really are complicit.

  42. ENOUGH says:

    Non violent methods of targeting them would be? all I can think of is blocking their drive ways etc and just being a general inconvenience all the time. I don’t see that as being effective. They can just telecommute these days. Don’t even need offices to work.
    Protesting like what Daniel said is pointless. The public really is more interested in stray cats needing shelter. I’m not that creative perhaps. But what’s left?

  43. ENOUGH says:

    We can’t even stop them taking our money. They take it before we get it thanks to the digital IRD system. What do tools do we have?

  44. ENOUGH says:

    Maybe we could start by listing their names here? Who is your case manager?

  45. ENOUGH says:

    regarding the legals. Is it illegal to name them? to me they are criminals, regardless of the what legislation says. There are countless examples of laws in history that were immoral.. I think the public need to know who these creatures are.

  46. ENOUGH says:

    should really read what I type before submitting. Apologies for all the typos.

  47. Bruce S says:

    @ENOUGH – men, as a collective need to work together to resolve these injustices. The simple fact is, not all men are feeling our pain. Yes we can assemble and fight a war for someone else; but we struggle to fight for ourselves. We are too conflicted and angry. These two elements are not the right ingredients to formulate a strategy to remove power from those who feed off the circumstances they have imposed on us.

    Every day we see instances of state injustices imposed on others; e.g. “police brutality”; we can all see the injustice but we aren’t at the end of the taser / dog / baton or boot. So yes; we verbalize shock and horror and move along to the installment….i.e. we are passive in our resistance; so much so we reach the point where we tacitly accept what is happening. This is precisely where Joe Public is with our grievances…..acknowledgment there may be an issue; tacit acceptance but zero resistance.

    The only way men will make any headway is by removing themselves and their identity from the society that enslaves them. By that I mean the majority of men need to down tools; walk away from their work and do nothing! Tax take plummets; infrastructure fails and the entire system breaks down. Any takers? Anything less will not work.

  48. too tired says:

    What about we all opt to pay from our bank accounts, step one.
    Then we all cancel those automatic payments at the same time, step two. Then we lock up and barricade all the major IRD offices so they cant go to work. Step 3.

    It will all be sorted out but it will be noticed by media. Then a huge bombardment of material about why me are fighting back.

  49. Daniel says:

    Is it still possible to get a bank account without an IRD number linked to it? That would be a start but if you earn a wage or salary it wouldn’t help much but it might be one asset they don’t sieze. The only real solution is be self employed, earn cash and stick it under your mattress the way tradies and Chinese do.
    Is it possible for affected men to set up a trust and get their wages paid via that?
    Basically they have their boot on our throats and will keep squeezing until we turn blue and if it kills us they don’t really care.

  50. kumar says:

    you will pay 45% tax on the interest earned if you don’t provide your IRD number to the bank.

  51. too tired says:

    This year is the last one were you can use the reduction of expected CS theft by having a partner and or extra children to care for giving you a larger Living Allowance.

    So if you live with anyone that doesn’t recieve benefits you can use thier name on your ‘change of circumstances form’ (yes men this means even your male friends) IRD cant check that you are dating just living together and you get the reduction.

    If I could do this I would pay $120 less permonth. If they had kids even more so.

    They are closing this with the changes in 2015. No reductions due to partners.

  52. OMG You're (&*)^*( says:

    Last time I checked, polygamy was illegal in this country.
    However, there is no law against how many partners you live with.
    That’s right, legally you can have seven partners, all living under the same roof (one for every night of the week!).
    The IRD formulae never allowed for that.

    [Be careful though! Imagine you had assets totally $1,000,000 at the start. Imagine when you have seven partners for three or more years. One leaves, takes half of everything. The next leaves, takes half of everything that's left; and so on till they're all gone. You'd be left with about $1,000,000 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 = $7,812.50c - and that is the law on splitting relationship property! ]

  53. OMG You're (&*)^*( says:

    Actually, in the above example, this country is so friggin PC, that were you to have a child to one of those seven partners, and they all leave, they’d probably ALL go onto DPB, name you as the father of their [collective] child; and you’d be assessed for child support to each of the seven ‘mothers’.

  54. Downunder says:

    Then again you don’t even have to be living with someone to be a partner; you need only satisfy a list of requirements that says you are co operating in the manner of a relationship.

    What you might think is your friend with bennefits is legally your partner.

  55. OMG You're (&*)^*( says:

    The law still requires them to be living in a relationship “in the nature of marriage”. There are certain tests: do they have a key to you home; do they leave clothes etc there – do they have drawer space? Would other people think or assume you are living together?. Do you shre chores? Do they contribute to living expenses at your home?
    Staying over one night a week probably does not cut it.

  56. Too Tired says:

    How did my helpful statement of reducing your child support through the last remaing lupole turn into converstaion about relationship property? Just trying to help those that like me are single but still want to increase the living allowance portion of thier CS assessment. Effectively reducing the monthly paymnets.

  57. MurrayBacon says:

    National’s budget gave a bit towards paid parental leave and almost 100x as much to tax reductions aimed for the richest section of the population.

    It reminded me that the US deficit exists mainly because the richest corporations pay only 1% tax, due to practically fraudulent deductions allowed for intellectual property use charges as tax deductions. In other words, while the poor are generally paying taxes, many of the rich are proportionately paying less tax than the poor!
    Even with multimillion$ donations to charity, this still remains so!
    With employers having a strong position to force down wages, higher wages could be paid if the rich were willing to accept reasonable returns on their investments and pay fair taxes too.
    Why the rich are meaner than the poor by Ally Fogg The Guardian
    It may be startling to some that richer people are less generous – but the statistic tallies with psychological research…….

  58. Depleted says:

    Interesting turn this thread has taken in places, … I’d like to contribute some of my favourite historical quotes by wise old dead men that were proponents of freedom and liberty…
    *
    Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.
    - Henry Louis Mencken (1880 – 1956)
    *
    All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.
    - Edmund Burke (1729 – 1797)
    *
    “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
    - Benjamin Franklin
    *
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.
    - Samuel Adams
    *
    If ever time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.
    - Samuel Adams
    *
    Now more than ever before, the people are responsible for the character of their Congress.
    If that body be ignorant, reckless and corrupt, it is because the people tolerate ignorance, recklessness and corruption.
    If it be intelligent, brave and pure, it is because the people demand these high qualities to represent them in the national legislature.
    If the next centennial does not find us a great nation … it will be because those who represent the enterprise, the culture, and the morality of the nation do not aid in controlling the political forces.
    - James Garfield (12th president of the US)
    *
    To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.
    - Abraham Lincoln
    *
    The money powers prey upon the nation in times of peace and conspire against it in times of adversity. The banking powers are more despotic than a monarchy, more insolent than autocracy, more selfish than bureaucracy. They denounce as public enemies all who question their methods or throw light upon their crimes.
    I have two great enemies, the Southern Army in front of me and the bankers in the rear. Of the two, the one at my rear is my greatest foe.
    - Abraham Lincoln
    *
    Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.
    - Thomas Paine
    *
    “if we can but prevent the government from wasting the labours of the people, under the pretence of taking care of them, they must become happy.”
    - Thomas Jefferson

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