Are lazy journalists drug addled?

There seems to be a divide between what Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse and Prime Minister John Key have said about New Zealand workers, and what media and critics are saying. This was highlighted on Q & A yesterday.

What Michael Woodhouse said a week earlier on Q & A.

I think what you’ve done is presuppose that money is the only barrier to people moving to work. Now, what we know and what we’ve said and listened to employers about is that that is one of many barriers.

Geography is definitely one. Skills, attitude, recreational drug and alcohol all prevents some of our young New Zealanders from gaining work.

Woodhouse has cited five reasons preventing “some of our young New Zealanders from gaining work“.

Key has since been heavily criticised for I have had a listen to the RNZ item and Guyon Espiner introduced it with:

The Prime Minister admits high immigration is putting strains on the country’s infrastructure but John Key says the Government will continue to bring in a large number to fill in jobs. He says this partly because many employers can’t get New Zealanders to do the work due to problems with drugs or work ethic, or that they can’t move to where the jobs are.

After some discussion Key said:

“We bring in people to pick fruit under the RSE (Recognised Seasonal Employer) scheme, and they come from the islands, and they do a fabulous job. And the government has been saying ‘well, OK, there are some unemployed people who live in the Hawke’s Bay, and so why can’t we get them to pick fruit’, and we have been trialling a domestic RSE scheme.

“But go and ask the employers, and they will say some of these people won’t pass a drug test, some of these people won’t turn up for work, some of these people will claim they have health issues later on. So it’s not to say there aren’t great people who transition from Work and Income to work, they do, but it’s equally true that they’re also living in the wrong place, or they just can’t muster what is required to actually work.”

Espiner responded:

Isn’t that a major failing for New Zealand, if what you are saying is right, that these people are too drug addled, or frankly, I don’t want to put words in your mouth, but basically too lazy is what you’re saying, they can’t get their act together.

Key:

Well what I’m saying to you is that, just go and ask an employer because I ask employers all the time, and we transition lots of people off Work and Income into work, but when you ask the question about why is there this group versus this demand, even in some reasonably low skilled jobs, it’s often they’re not in the right location, so they’re living in Northland and we need the work somewhere else, and that’s genuine, you can understand that, or they don’t have the skills, or there are these other wider issues, they’ll turn up for a while and then they won’t last there.

Key said that “lot’s of people” transition to work, and he cited location, skills and “these other wider issues”.

“Drug addled” and “too lazy” where Espiner’s words, not Key’s.

Jessica Mutch introduced yesterday’s coverage of Are some young NZers too lazy to do the work migrants will do? saying that what Woodhouse had said “sparked some debate” and that Woodhouse had made some “interesting remarks”. Woodhouse was quoted.

Mutch then said:

Prime Minister John Key followed up the next day saying the Government had to bring in migrants to fill the jobs because many young New Zealanders had a poor work ethic or a drug problem.

I haven’t seen any evidence of Key saying it like that.

Q & A then showed some street interviews in Wellington and showed a variety of responses, including:

Interviewer: We hear people saying that people, especially young people, don’t have a good work ethic, too lazy to work, drug problems…

Young person 1: Oh I’d love a job.

Young person 2: Some people don’t want to hire us because we’ve got criminal convictions.

Young person 1: I’ve got no one to watch my dog, that’s why I don’t, I’ve got no job.

Then three people were interviewed.

  • Hew Dalrymple, farmer and vice chairman of Federated Farmers Maize and Forage
  • Tony Stevens, one of three co-conveners of Stand-up, the young wing of the CTU
  • Calvin Fisher from the Amalgamated Workers Union

Dalrymple:

My experience has been, especially through the squash industry and harvesting squash, the comparison between the different crews that work behind the harvesting machines is dramatically different.

And probably, I’ll be honest, the biggest problem with the, what I’d describe as perhaps the people that don’t want to come to work is the lack of attendance. So the foreign work crews will be probably fifty and up to a hundred percent more productive. They earn very good money.

And that money is equally available to anybody that’s doing this manual labour.

He says that the best earn over $1000 in the hand per week, and $800-1000 in the hand is common.

The local crews you might end up with ten behind the squash harvester one day, five the next day. We can’t  operate our businesses like that.

Mutch:

Basically what you’re saying is that Kiwi pickers just aren’t reliable, they don’t turn up and they’re not as respectful.

Dalrymple:

No, some are, so I generalised with that, of course there’s exceptions to the rule, but unfortunately the system that’s in place at the moment is putting people out in that type of work that don’t want to be there in my opinion.

That sounds like an issue that deserves examination but it was not on the Q & A agenda.

Mutch switched to Fisher…

Calvin I want to bring you in on this as well, you’ve put Kiwi workers to some of these farmers, what’s been your experience? What have many of the farmers you’ve spoken to prefer, do they prefer the foreign workers or are they happy to employ New Zealanders.

Fisher: Well it really is a mixed bag…

…and he went on the say that the nature of agricultural work had changed markedly with bigger gangs now required.

Then Mutch switched to Stevens with the issue she was determined to pursue:

Tony I’ll bring you in on this, the Government coming out this week  saying Kiwis are drugged up and too lazy to work…

No, that is what media has said, not the Government.

…what’s you’re experience, what’s your reaction to those comments?

Stevens: Hugely concerned by those comments. You’ve got to think about how we as young people and young workers are receiving that message from out highest office.

Actually it’s a message from media who appear to be misrepresenting what the Government has said.

This is our Prime Minister and Employment Minister basically describing entire generations as being hopeless and on drugs.

That overstates and generalises even more than media.

You know it’s already hard enough to try and enter the labour market as a young worker without having these you know these negative almost ingrained stereotypes so we go in to a job interview and employers already have this perception of us. It makes it very difficult.

I largely think it’s untrue, there are pockets of young workers that may be like that, but um I think that to really make blanket statements about entire generations really doesn’t give us a lot of hope in our Government.

There are plenty of valid criticisms and complaints that can be levelled at the Government.

But I have major concerns if someone representing young workers misrepresents what was actually said so much.

Fisher came in:

I want to pick up on Tony’s comments, I think the generalisation from the Minister was just disgraceful.

Back to Stevens:

Mutch: Tony at the end of the day they have to turn up for work consistently, they have to be drug free, for these examples here are they creating a bad impression for everyone else?

Stevens: Um, yeah, possibly, um but I think it’s still again an over generalisation of an entire workforce.

Stevens then went on to generalise about exploitation of immigrant workers.

Unless I’m missing something said by Woodhouse or Key or the Government it appears to me that some journalists have cherry picked and embellished comments made and have created a week long story out of it.

This has been carried on by Q & A, and interpretations claims made by Stevens in particular have been repeated and not questioned.

This is poor from the media and poor representation of young workers by Stevens if he misrepresents what has been said by Government ministers so much.

I don’t think journalists like Espiner and Mutch are lazy or drug addled, but they appear to me to be misrepresenting what politicians have said, seemingly determined to make stories that are inaccurate and unjustified.

There are important issues around work ethics, immigrant workers, exploitation of workers and unemployment. These have been poorly served by this coverage.

Q & A:

 

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62 Comments

  1. Iceberg

     /  12th September 2016

    “I’ve got no one to watch my dog, that’s why I don’t, I’ve got no job”

    Pretty much sums up the whole argument. Slam dunk for Key.

    Reply
    • Blazer

       /  12th September 2016

      if you think 1 isolated anecdote is proof of anything,I will use the same logic and state you are a complete idiot.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  12th September 2016

        Same goes for the loony Left who use the tactic continuously to their own detriment in the eyes of the rest of the population.

        Reply
      • Iceberg

         /  12th September 2016

        “if you think 1 isolated anecdote is proof of anything”

        Not sure anyone has described your contribution to your own petard quite so well.

        Reply
      • It’s not just one isolated anecdote though. Dalrymple gave examples from his experience. Even Stevens reluctantly acknowledged a problem – “Um, yeah, possibly, um”.

        An I know for a fact that an unwillingness to work – with all sorts of lame excuses used – is a significant problem with organisations in the work finding fields. Excuses not to look for work, excuses not to take on a job (a mother I know said recently her son turned down his first job offer because it started to early for him, 7 am) and excuses not to turn up at work.

        Reply
      • Doesn’t that logic apply equally Blazer to all of Q&A’s handful of random street interviews alleging to show, in Jessica’s words, “whether the government was right” in its assertions?

        The whole Q&A beat up was weak as piss… as Pete is pointing out. But it’s the norm these days. Try to watch Lisa Owen’s same-day interview of Paula Bennett on The Nation without screaming. It’s absolutely dreadful.

        Reply
  2. Pete. It surprises you or concerns you that two main stream media outlets would basically misrepresent a situation, claim Key said something [which on the actual direct quotes i have seen he didn’t say] and then spin it out to generate more “news” opportunities????

    This is NZ in the 2010’s. The media have spiraled further and further into opinion forming and steering issues over the last 40 years. Now is just a natural consequence of that process.

    2 things or a combination of both drive this: bias and a need for revenue.

    The key question is not about Espiner or Mutch BUT about the unseen hand/s guiding the stories and question lines. The names that are not front and centre, but are driving this are the producers of the shows. They set the agenda. Their names just appear briefly in the credits and draw no attention.

    Maybe we need them to front up on a regular basis and explain their position and angles…

    Reply
    • I’m not surprised, I used this as an example to highlight a major media issue.

      “Maybe we need them to front up on a regular basis and explain their position and angles…”

      That would be interesting but who would investigate the investigators? Media seem to generally avoid questioning each other.

      Reply
      • The media, and particularly producers of news and current affairs, get a pretty free run. They have a role in being the watchdog on the body politic but they are failing at the moment in my view with this type of manipulation

        Who would question them? Very good point. They used to have ethics and get called by their own, but that doesn’t happen so much and those who do call others out get rounded on pretty quickly.

        It seems the prevailing attitude in the big news rooms is controversy sells and is also some what slanted against Key and co. That slant could be genuine bias or it could just be boredom driven and wanting change to give them something to write about. NZ is a pretty dull country for a reporter compared to “big” countries like the US

        All I know Pete is every time the media claim something I don’t trust it one bit unless I can verify it across many different sources including blogs and looking at transcripts of actual interviews.

        Watching some of the politic TV interviews or listening to Radio interviews is an exercise in trying to hear the interviewee answer as the interviewer pushes their pre-determined outcomes down the throat of the interviewee to get the sound bite they want…

        Reply
  3. All this series underlines to me is the stupidity of the MSM Party inventing and modifying what was actually said to achieve the aim of making what is a hysterical slagging attack on the PM and one of his Ministers. When this sort of nonsense occurs, why isn’t the so-called journalist/interviewer not sued for libel/slander, because that is what the reporting actually is. And for others, I would make the same comment about the negativity of our media even if Labour/Green MPs were the target. The big problem is that most of our media lack the intellectual discipline needed to present honest reporting on matters of national concern. Making it up is reprehensible and should be outlawed as it represents an attack on democratic principles of truth and justice. They are quick to call for a fair and generous society, what is fair and generous about their making it up?

    Reply
  4. Alan Wilkinson

     /  12th September 2016

    Far too many journalists lack both intelligence and honesty. There are only a handful in NZ worth reading or listening to. I see surveys now rate journalists well below politicians for trustworthiness.

    Reply
    • Blazer

       /  12th September 2016

      Be interested to know ,which journos you rate Al.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  12th September 2016

        I’ve mentioned Hill-Cone. My old chess mate, Vernon Small. Occasionally, Brian Rudman. Several from NBR as well as their non-journalists: Hooten, Hide and Jones.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  12th September 2016

          Hide and Hooten are hardly unbiased in their writings.

          Reply
          • Joe Bloggs

             /  12th September 2016

            no of course not, but they ascribe to Alan’s rabid right views so that evidently makes them kosher.

            Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  12th September 2016

            Everyone has a bias, the issue is how much intelligence they bring with it. Rudman is heavily left wing and probably so is Hill-Cone but they can be strong factually and interesting anyway. Vernon is highly intelligent as are Hide and Jones in different ways. Hooten has to be taken as a partisan actor but he often has inside knowledge. Hosking and Keall of NBR are also useful. The former has good judgement and the latter has interesting topics. The NBR reporters tend to be objective also and don’t try to slant or hype the story, just present the facts.

            Reply
            • Blazer

               /  12th September 2016

              Hill -Cones close associates…Slater ,Odgers,Lusk…..!!!

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  12th September 2016

              Evidence?

            • Blazer

               /  12th September 2016

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  12th September 2016

              Ha ha! Photo taken at launch of Steve Braunias’ book launch with the cream of lefty journalists there: http://www.nbr-staging.co.nz/steve-braunias-book-launch-madmen-people-scene

              You’ll have to do better than that, Blazer. Doesn’t Odger look happy?!!

            • Blazer

               /  12th September 2016

              ‘Oi, you lot. Can you all please stop being so mean to my friend Cathy Odgers! She is not some Machiavellian Cruella de Vil.

              She’s just a naughty girl. Cathy is just a bit too clever for her own good – I think boredom is what prompts her to be a stirrer. Cactus may put on a spiky front with her outrageous sense of humour but she is also one of the kindest people I have ever met. (She brought my children the biggest Paddington Bear you have ever seen.) And despite her own dramas going on – she even got death threats – Cathy has been a loyal support to me while I’ve been depressed. ‘…Hill-Cone…NZH.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  12th September 2016

              That’s better. But a personal friend doesn’t mean a political alliance or even agreement. I’ve never seen anything she has written that looks like anything but a leftward political inclination.

            • Blazer

               /  12th September 2016

              ‘Hill -Cones close associates…!

        • “surveys now rate journalists well below politicians for trustworthiness.”

          Thank Heaven for blog-sites huh????

          Reply
  5. ” … it appears to me that some journalists have cherry picked and embellished comments”

    This is a new thing, right!? I recall the days when the NZ Herald was considered the middle-class/employers National Party paper and the Auckland Star the working-class/employees Labour Party rag …

    “There are important issues around work ethics, immigrant workers, exploitation of workers and unemployment. These have been poorly served by this coverage.”

    Well … possibly? It might be equally ‘true’ that “these [issues] have been PERFECTLY served by this coverage”? Diverted, obfiscated, muddied and skimmed-over, because no-one really wants to deal with the underlying issues and causes, least of all the big political parties, including Labour – who’ve all got themselves conjoined with neoliberal ideology – especially National.

    News-and-current affairs lite is the perfect expression of the times …

    The (so-called) ‘free market’s’ capitalist individualism (“greed is good”) has been given its reign, proved it has a rightful place and a very significant role to play in complete, whole, integrated or ‘organic’ economics, but it has come up short on social conscience and communal responsibility. Laissez-faire is laissez-faire. Now as before, left to its own devices it leads inexorably to “gilded age” consciousness and equally inevitably to another great depression, another …..

    People either don’t know what to do about this or cannot face the fact that to make it better for everyone is going to cost more …

    Even that may not be strictly true? It may only ‘seem’ to cost more? It might cost more initially, up-front, e.g. to build fences at the top of cliffs, but this could be cheaper in the long-term than the ever increasing cost of more and more ambulances at the bottom …

    Reply
    • ” I recall the days when the NZ Herald was considered the middle-class/employers National Party paper”

      If you follow places like The Standard and The Daily Blog that’s a moderate description from their viewpoint, but if you follow Whale Oil or Kiwiblog then the Herald is a far left repeater.

      Reply
    • what neo-liberal ideology is running unchecked in NZ?

      We have lots of regulation, including of banks, we have a huge state apparatus circa 40 odd percentage of the entire economy, we have a welfare state that provides housing, healthcare, education and cash benefits in peoples bank accounts.

      When ever anything goes wrong no matter how small or fixable by the community – all you hear is what is the government going to do about it. that is so opposite “neo-liberal” philosophy as to be its antithesis

      The neo-liberal thing is just a big fat red herring flopping on the kitchen table.

      Seriously PnZ – you have some interesting stuff to say and some of it I kind of agree with at times, but banging the “we are ensnared in a neo-liberal economy and culture” is just completely diverting from anything of value you blog..

      Reply
      • Blazer

         /  12th September 2016

        ‘We have lots of regulation, including of banks,’….do tell!!We do have an OBR,the aussies do not,they have depositors insurance…why is that?

        Reply
        • Little flicker – OBR is a shit piece of legislation – I don’t support it. Bank shareholders should bear market risk including needing to kick in to support another bank when it goes tits up, to ensure an orderly settlement process and position unwinding.

          Banking deposit insurance is a two edged sword and potentially encourages risky lending as the depositors money is safeguarded by a generally state backed guarantee.

          My personal position on Banks:
          1- They should hold a larger amount of capital to hedge risk of loss [haven’t looked at BOS guidelines for over a decade so can’t comment on specific risk weighed capital holdings at the minute].
          2 – Retail based banks should be prohibited from Investment banking operations. You want to put capital on the line then use your own not the retail banks assets – i,e, classic partnership model banking where partners assets where on the line if things went belly up.
          3 – Instead of OBR: Banks, as part of their licence, sign up to a bank wind up process that obviates the need for OBR type deposit grabbing and deposit loss in the event a bank runs into trouble. The registered banks should be forced to contribute a capital reserve instead, held by the RB to mitigate the risks of bank failure and have that fund used to enable an orderly unwind of positions and exposures related to the failed bank
          4 -Finance companies: no failure cover. You put your money their know the risk and bear the cosequences

          I broke my rule talking to you Flicker, but OBR is a disgusting socialising of Banking risk away form shareholders to depositors.

          Reply
          • Blazer

             /  12th September 2016

            to sum up-you do not think banks are regulated enough.Agree.The big 4 banks in NZ ,while ostensibly Australian, are in fact majority owned by the too big to fail Wall St ‘banks’.

            Reply
            • To be clear I think the ability for Retail banks to use there balance sheets to finance investment banking type activities is a bad thing and puts the whole system exposure to risk level at too high a level for me.

              And shareholders should bear risk not depositors via the OBR…

      • @ dave1924 – I feel the same about you, assertions about me like I say “neo-liberal ideology is running unchecked” and “we are ensnared in a neo-liberal economy and culture” just completely diverts from anything of value you blog …

        Feel free to quote me saying “running unchecked” or “ensnared” from my comment above?

        You are seeing things dave, IMO, mirages, possibly generated by your own projected fears about free-market capitalism, while I am saying stuff like neoliberal ideology “has a rightful place and a very significant role to play in complete, whole, integrated or ‘organic’ economics, but it has come up short on social conscience and communal responsibility.”

        Do we want a decent society?

        Pared-to-the-bone social welfare does not qualify as ‘decent’ IMHO, it qualifies, at best, as less decent than its immediate precursor, conservatively as a patchwork of poor solutions to inherent social issues – as though health, education and welfare would somehow “go away” in a perfect free market – and at worst as an utter indictment upon those who benefit hideously and heinously, if not criminally, at their fellow human beings’ expense.

        Neoliberalism, the name given to the ideological under-pinnings of the Freidman inspired post-Pinochet era, very widely used and accepted, may be a flopping red-herring to you, but for many people, low-paid workers, the under-employed and beneficiaries – its flotsam and jetsam – it is a big pile of unpaid bills floating around on their kitchen table …

        People naturally expect governments to correct problems that successive governments have brought about … in our long, slow and gruelling evolution towards a balance between capitalism and ‘social-ism’ (not State Socialism or National Socialism) …

        Reply
        • You never fail to rise to the prod PnZ…

          “Pared-to-the-bone social welfare does not qualify as ‘decent’ ” pared to the bone? bejesus. 35 billion in Social Welfare budget headline plus education plus health care plus no fault ACC plus all the little hidden spends like insulation. and its not enough.

          The fact is NZ is a socialist political-economy already. Its a workers paradise. But its not enough.

          As for neo-liberalism being widely used and accepted – only out there in leftie land among the Minto supporters and the various splinter groups of the old hard line Marxist and Maoist groups…

          When laissez-faire economics breakout in NZ I’ll be sure to point it out to you. NZ has been a state control economy since the off with the socialist shackles only being grudgingly relaxed every now and then when the economy has been on the verge of dying, like 1984-1992, only for those shackles to be re-fitted promptly someone falls over and demands the Government help them up…

          Reply
          • Speaking of “never fail to rise to the prod” … Oh yeah, like the “socialist shackles” were “grudgingly relaxed” for the Global Financial Crisis …?

            Like Rogernomics, ” … summarised as the dismantling of the Australasian orthodoxy of state development that had existed for the previous 90 years, and its replacement by the Anglo-American neo-classical model based on the monetarist policies of Milton Friedman and the Chicago School … Between 1985 and 1992, New Zealand’s economy grew by 4.7% during the same period in which the average OECD nation grew by 28.2%.”

            Like Ruthanasia, ” … net public debt was 52% of GDP (43% after Telecom sale). By current standards that was not the extreme situation portrayed.”

            Quotes = Wikipedia

            See especially paragraph # 3 of “immediate results” in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogernomics#Immediate_results

            Reply
            • Wikipedia written by people with a viewpoint so they have a source to quote….

              NZ is a socialist country always has been bar the period I quoted from 84-91/92.

              Apart from that its been a state lead economy still is. Full of regulation and a very generous state funded set of benefits. The fact you think its some how neo-liberal is quite funny.

              if your sick in NZ – sickness benefit, community services card, public hospitals, subsidised medicines

              if your out of work – unemployment benefit, accommodation supplement

              if you want education free primary and secondary education, followed by heavily subsidised tertiary education

              when you retire – national superannuation benefit, community services card, gold card for free transport, accommodation supplement if you are renting, a health care system that looks after you

              Milton F would recognise it instantly as a reflection of his philosophy of small government, personal responsibility and markets delivering solutions. Its like its walk right off the pages of his writings

              Keep believing it may actually come true this neo-liberal state of affairs you keep referencing..

              The truth is more like a mixed-market model, with a heavy state hand on the tiller. But I suppose to a socialist its never enough until a command economy is in place – with a dictated central wage round and licensing of all economic activity. kind of like the 1970’s …

            • Yeah ‘Right’ dave, now wikipedia is a socialist rag too …

              I never even used the word neoliberal in my above comment … Wiki used “neo classical”.

              I don’t want a command economy. I want a more decent balance of market economics and social responsibility, since at rock bottom economics is a social activity. So yes, of course all economic activity should be “licensed” – as in given license – by all the people it effects, which is everyone … currently represented by our so-called democratically elected government.

              Milton Freidman’s unwholesome “disconnected thinking” – the head disconnected from the heart – gave ideological permission for the US to incite de Hoz and openly back Pinochet, and, having tried it out in South American dictatorships, to foist neoliberal political-economic ideology on other Western countries, mostly using the “crisis intervention” method in one form or another … NZ’s “currency crisis” a notable example …

              Records speak for themselves, Martinez de Hoz , ” … aiming for a free market, they decided to open the country’s borders, so that foreign goods could freely enter the country. Argentina’s industry, which had been on the rise [for] the last 20 years since Frondizi’s economic plan, was destroyed … The measures lead to an increase in poverty from 9% in 1975 to 40% at the end of 1982″ … and Cavallo, “the final result of this [Cavallo’s] plan was an unemployment of 25% and 60% of people living under the poverty line”

              “According to Klien, by the late 1980s the [Chilean] economy had stabilized and was growing, but around 45% of the population had fallen into poverty while the wealthiest 10% saw their incomes rise by 83%.”

              The same ideology somehow “permitted” Roger Douglas the affrontery to say, “Define your objectives clearly, and move towards them in quantum leaps, otherwise the interest groups will have time to mobilise and drag you down”. As though he and his cohorts were NOT AN INTEREST GROUP!!!

              I suppose he meant “interest groups” like the people of New Zealand!? The people who elected him to serve them!!?? Indeed, to me he sounds so arrogant as to hint at mental illness …

  6. Zedd

     /  12th September 2016

    more ‘status quo’ & continue the ‘war on drugs’ rhetoric from ‘Team Key’ & using it as excuses/barriers, esp. to young kiwi workers.

    as i said on other strings a ‘positive DRUG test’ does not prove that a person is intoxicated at the time (only in the last few weeks), therefore they are not even credible ! :/

    Reply
    • Yes Zedd, but drug tests, like so many other incomprehensible aspects of our culture, still perfectly serve the digi-industrial ethos of our times …

      Looking to comprehensively justify mechanisation of your industry? Machines are not just more cost efficient and productive than low-paid workers. They don’t come to work “drug addled” either, they don’t have sick days or personal problems or difficult interpersonal relationships with other workers …

      Its all about the bottom line mate … and the bottom line ain’t “young kiwi workers”. The bottom line ain’t people at all …

      Reply
      • @ PZ
        the way of the world.. I guess :/

        Reply
      • Nick Ellis

         /  12th September 2016

        In addition to Zedd’s point that a positive drug test doesn’t prove that a person was on drugs at work, the act of insisting on a drug test has always seemed to me to be the act of an employer who insists on taking control of a workers leisure time as well as their working time. A place where they have no right to be.

        Reply
        • Iceberg

           /  12th September 2016

          They certainly do, insofar as it impacts on the job they are paid to do in the employers time.

          Reply
          • Blazer

             /  12th September 2016

            you’d get more production out of your cotton pickers if they were …stoned…I’m sure…massa!

            Reply
            • Iceberg

               /  12th September 2016

              If that’s your view of the right these days, and it is shared by your low information peers, then the left is fucked.

              Seven More Years.

          • Bill

             /  12th September 2016

            The present model for Cannabis testing used by the NZDDA has nothing to do with intoxication levels. Six weeks in your urine, three hours in your blood. They don’t test your blood for that reason.
            In turn NZDDA removes ones right to earn an income, without a conviction, with no regard to the circumstance, setting or level of use. The court finding, in favour of a waste worker highlighted this.

            “Subsequently, an independent toxicologist from Otago University, Dr Leo Schep, found that Mr McLeod was a very infrequent user of cannabis and contrary to EnviroWaste’s claims, was never impaired while working”.

            Improper Cannabis testing, is nothing more than a social profiling tool.

            Reply
            • Nick Ellis

               /  12th September 2016

              From the ruling in that case….

              As Chief Judge Colgan stated in Parker v Silver Fern Farms Ltd (No 1):2

              “Employee drug testing regimes impinge significantly upon individual rights and freedoms. Not only must policies and their application meet the legal tests of being lawful and reasonable directions to employees, but, where these are contained in policies promulgated by the employer, these should be interpreted and applied strictly”.

            • Nick Ellis

               /  12th September 2016

              Kirk Hardy, CEO of NZDDA, seems to be of the view that all drug users are on their way to the “many ugly things” that he saw as a drug squad member. Workplace drug testing stops the depravity in its tracks. He also believes “it is the employer’s right to know if their employees – or potential employees – are doing drugs, whether it is at work or not”.

              He is also only in the business of testing hair, saliva and urine. Looking for past use, not those who are actually impaired at the workplace.

              https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/workplace-drug-test-disquiet

          • Nick Ellis

             /  12th September 2016

            Only those I invite into my leisure time have anything close to a ‘right’ to it. Though in reality no one does, not employer of government. When you’re off the clock you’re not collecting wages or paying taxes, and therefore beholden to no one.

            Reply
          • Bill

             /  12th September 2016

            So in your mind, what are the impacts of Cannabis use without a level of impairment in the workplace?

            Because what I’ve seen in industries like mining, fishing and forestry has been a shift to harder drugs like Meth that are out of ones system, as far as detection in as little as 24 hours after use.

            Reply
  7. However Zedd what a positive test for drugs does tell us is that the person concerned used the drug and this would be a red flag for any prospective employer or coach.

    Reply
    • Zedd

       /  12th September 2016

      @bjm1

      if you say so… next you’ll likely be telling us, Alcohol (the MORE harmful) is not even a DRUG ?! :/

      Reply
      • Zedd – drugs and alcohol don’t mix in the work place. Many industries like electrical distribution, forestry, telcos etc have large field forces who need to be straight when working due to danger if concentration is not 100% .

        Places like Transpower enforce a no alcohol policy across the board – even in the corporate head office. Have a beer with lunch don’t come back to the office.

        Alcohol is as destructive for some as Meth is for others. It all comes down to body chemistry and susceptibility to addiction and ability of the body to process the intoxicant and still function normally.

        The only safe level of drug or alcohol in your system at work is zero. I do concede there is a case to be made for I had a spliff on Friday and am straight monday morning not being a problem.

        Reply
        • Zedd

           /  12th September 2016

          @dave

          my point exactly & I agree that no one should be at work intoxicated by any drug.. BUT as I said (several time now) these ‘DRUG tests’ only show use of cannabis in the last FEW WEEKS.. not recently (ie the last day or two) BUT they are taken as ‘evidence’.. a ‘DRUGGIE’.. don’t employ ! 😦

          Reply
      • Zedd, I would never be guilty of saying that having lost a brother to the dreaded booze, and being brought up with an alcoholic father in law and heavy drinking parents I know exactly what a curse alcohol is and what it does to our society. Meth or ice/crystal is a bigger curse though ask any Medical Doctor!

        Reply
    • I agree. So why isn’t Alcohol treated or viewed the same way then? I think it’s indisputable that both are harmful and that high/prolonged use of either is a sign of someone not wanting to live in reality. Employers need employees with both feet on the ground. Even smoking tobacco tells you something about an employee and is a red flag.

      What PartisanZ and Zedd often highlight is the ludicrous suggestion that cannabis is somehow worse than Alcohol and other legal drugs.

      Regarding your post about courage of your convictions…..

      “Conviction is a luxury of those on the sidelines” is a memorable quote from ‘A Beautiful Mind’. I’ve found it to be true. The struggle to remain true to yourself and your personal mission, to go against the crowds, to maintain your course for years alone, is something that few people would choose to do. Journalists aren’t paragons of virtue. The everyday faceless men and women in the armed forces, fire brigades, police front lines, hospitals, hospice care, mental health facilities, intelligence analysts, elder-care facilities and homeless support services are generally outstanding people. Those people generally are getting on with their lives and helping others.

      Journalism is about corporate bottom lines or pushing ideologies and ideologues (private versus publicly funded). Politics is a cesspit and about careerists, not public service. It has always been this way in my opinion BJ.

      Reply
      • @Ben R

        cheers.. all I’ve ever said is; “Lets have a level playing field on Drugs” the current legal status of Alcohol & Cannabis really say NOTHING about their relative harm level..

        btw; the biggest ‘killer DRUG’ is Tobacco !! (5k+ deaths/year) & still totally legal 😦

        Reply
        • Bill

           /  12th September 2016

          Professor Doug Sellman, from the National Addiction Centre now estimates we have400,000 “alcoholics” in New Zealand. If Alcohol testing was used to show usage up to 6 weeks after use, would we not have a worse problem that the one highlighted by improper testing for Cannabis.

          Reply
          • Have you got a link? What is his definition of alcoholic? That can be from narrow or wide ranging.

            Reply
            • Bill

               /  13th September 2016

              PG, I think it will be interesting to see how people view the criteria for Alcoholism from taking the test in the link. As self denial of there even being a potential problem, coexists as a fundamental feature in Alcohol abuse.
              On another note it’s interesting that the users of Alcohol have found it so easy to reconcile the medical links to seven types of Cancer.

              If links to seven Cancers had been attributed to Cannabis, there wouldn’t even be a Cannabis debate and this has been a smoking gun prohibitionists have spent decades looking for. In the face of a lack of evidence prohibitionists only have fear, misinformation and bogus drug testing, left to their disposal.

      • Good response from your heart Ben! We are on the winning side.

        Reply

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