Sunday, February 9, 2014

Who moved their cheese?

Cunliffe seems to have decided that recent non-stories about NZ whingers living in Australia are an opportunity for some populist politics. I really wish he hadn't, because the results are cringe-making.

In a press release about it, he says two stupid things:

1.  "Those New Zealanders contribute fully to Australian society, yet are treated like third class citizens."

2. “In this matter John Key should take a lead from Labour and insist Kiwis in Australia get a fair deal.”

Here's what's stupid about them:

First, NZers in Australia who arrived after 26 Feb 2001 aren't third-class citizens, they aren't any kind of citizens at all unless they took out Australian citizenship, which the ones complaining haven't.  To complain that non-citizens don't have the same rights as citizens is pointless - of course they fucking don't, that's why people trouble themselves to jump through the various bureaucratic hoops of acquiring citizenship of the country they've emigrated to.

Second, in demanding that the PM insist Kiwis living in Australia get a 'fair deal' (by which he means special treatment not accorded to any other nationalities wanting to live there), he's making a hell of a rod for his own back.  Doesn't he plan on becoming the PM himself at some point?  At which point, won't he now need to insist that Australia make this change? This wildly-generous-to-NZ change that it would be seriously not in Australia's interests to make?  He's going to insist on it, now?  How's that going to play out, does he think? I foresee only future humiliation ahead for him if he pursues it.

This whinging from NZ Gastarbeiter in Australia is a classic hiding to nothing. Australia removed social security provisions for NZers arriving after Feb 26 2001 due to large numbers arriving and a real problem with Third Worlders using NZ's slack citizenship requirements as a back door into Australia.  It was entirely reasonable for them to do so, and would be not even remotely in their interests to reverse the changes.  The NZ government has absolutely no leverage whatsoever on this issue.  Instead of complaining, we should count ourselves lucky that Clark was able to keep for NZers the automatic right to live and work in Australia.  As it stands, NZers are still free to live and work in Australia, they just don't get the full package that comes with citizenship unless they (uh, duh-uh) take up fucking citizenship.  If people want to emigrate, they should do it properly.

12 comments:

Watcher said...

I guess what gets in many Kiwi claws is the fact that Australian citizens may be eligible for the benefits below when residing in New Zealand.

Community Wage (for sickness or unemployment)

Domestic Purposes Benefit (for sole parents and widows or widowers with children)

Invalids Benefit (for people with disabilities)

New Zealand Superannuation (Age Pension)

Interested said...

"As it stands, NZers are still free to live and work in Australia, they just don't get the full package that comes with citizenship unless they (uh, duh-uh) take up fucking citizenship"

And how do you get citizenship if you started paying taxes in Australia 12 years ago?

Psycho Milt said...

I guess what gets in many Kiwi claws is the fact that Australian citizens may be eligible for the benefits below when residing in New Zealand.

I get why they'd feel that way, but Australia's under no obligation to reciprocate. And you can bet that if NZ was facing an ever-increasing number of Aussies coming here and significant problems with Third Worlders who wouldn't qualify for citizenship here coming in as 'Australians,' Kiwis would most likely be squawking for the government to do something about it.

And how do you get citizenship if you started paying taxes in Australia 12 years ago?

The same way you get citizenship in any other country you want to emigrate to - you apply for it, and if you meet the criteria you get it.

Here's the thing: we're getting a pretty generous deal in having the right to live and work in Australia, which is why so many are doing it. If a bunch of ingrates who don't know what's good for them start braying about how they're paying taxes without getting citizenship rights so are somehow being ripped off, the fairly obvious best path to 'fairness' will be for the Aus government to see to it that NZers don't find themselves living, working and paying taxes in Australia without the appropriate permanent resident/citizenship papers. Be careful what you wish for.

Simon said...

Cunllife isnt really addressing Key it's press releases for the sheeple.

Some of whom should be along shortly.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Mr Cunnliffe appears to be one of those highly educated people with no brains.

Apart from the fact he was, I think, a member of the Labour cabinet which approved the measures about which he now complains, he could always promise to apply the same restrictions to Australain citizens living in NZ in the unlikely event he survives a 2014 election.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

I understand the process for obtaining citizenship takes a few months and costs about $500.

I'd rather buy 50 bottles of ten year old shiraz at a wine auction.

The Veteran said...

Holden ... I think the point is that the Clark Labour Government conceded the point that the Aust Govt had the right to do this (for the reasons outlined by PM).

And now all these years later Cunliffe is looking for a headline.

Just where were you Mr Cunliffe when the pedal hit the metal?

Quiet as the proverbial mouse or a shiver looking for a spine perhaps.

When 'your' mob start criticising the boy perhaps you should start to take notice.

sigh

Psycho Milt said...

Don't get me wrong - I think there's plenty of political mileage for Cunliffe in NZers living in Australia: specifically, the fact that, when in Opposition, John Key presented the number NZers moving to Australia as an indictment on the government, then oversaw an increase in the numbers after he gained power. Is it still an indictment on the government, John?

Not to mention that, after much big talk about ambition for NZ and "Say goodbye to higher taxes, not your loved ones," Key was reduced to having his Finance Minister claim that the fact that NZ pay and conditions are so much worse than in Australia is a "competitive advantage." It is, Bill, yes - the sort of competitive advantage Bangladesh has. Funny how we don't look on that as a good thing, isn't it?

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Milt, you might be far better off in NZ with a slightly lower pay rate (and taxes) than in Australia looking for a nonexistant higher paying job.

Anonymous said...

The strange thing about Aussies they adopt our destructive policies so quickly.
There was deregulation of the fuel industry and GST to name a few.
None of them really benefited Joe Kiwi.
Now its attack the Public service just as National did with its destructive inefficiencies of having to be countered by employing higher paying contractors to replace those who left.

Watcher said...

"The strange thing about Aussies they adopt our destructive policies so quickly."

You forget that New Zealand is the experiment. Just the right size demographics for all those computer modelling.

We will always lead.

Paulus said...

Had interesting discussion with Aussie Cousin recently when he was here -retired very senior Public Servant in Canberra - Immig and Ethnics affairs (as was).
We decided that there was a way but New Zealand and Australia must play there parts as follows:-
10 - 15 year project
All New Zealand immigrants shall have to apply for a new special visa in advance - no more free entry.
NZ Govt stumps up for a period say 10 years or so for what the Aussie Govt pays to those there bringing them into line with what an a full Aussie gets.
After say 10- 15 years New Zealand support ceases, as by that time assimilation will have taken place and that those immigrants can start to apply for say Citizenship and all other emoluments as an equal Aussie taxpayer.
It is an outline only but could be looked at.