public servants

Public servants are leaving Auckland in droves, but nobody dares speak the real reason

One of the many unfortunate consequences of Auckland’s grossly over-priced housing is the barrier it presents to people moving to the city.

New Zealanders in other parts of the country have to lower their sights considerably to sell their house and buy one in Auckland.

Conversely, Aucklanders will be wary of moving to another centre unless they can afford to keep their Auckland property.

There is logic, therefore, in a proposal from Auckland school principals, which we reported last Sunday, to pay teachers a premium to work in the city.

A survey of 157 principals found a third were confident they could make appropriate appointments to vacancies in their schools.

The reason was not just the difficulty of finding enough teachers willing to move to Auckland but of keeping those who were here.

Those saving for a house could buy one much sooner if they moved out of Auckland.

If they owned a modest house in Auckland it was tempting to sell up and buy something better in a smaller town for the same price. In three of the surveyed primary schools, there were no less than 28 vacancies at the start of this month to replace teachers who had resigned.

The highest turnover is in schools in Auckland’s areas of highest wealth and half those who resigned had left the city. Read more »

Have public servants become like the medieval clergy?

Certainly in some places around the world, public servants have become like medieval clergy, rapaciously enjoying benefits paid for off of the back of the serfs:

A medieval society can be defined in a variety of ways. In terms of class, there is more a pyramidal culture. A vast peasantry sits below an elite of clergy and lords above ? but with little or no independent middle class in-between.

I think California is getting there quickly ? with the U.S. soon to follow.

For our version of the clergy, think public employees, whose salary and benefits are anywhere from 30-40% higher than their counterparts in the private sector. In California, the security guard in the symphony parking lot makes minimum wage and has no pension, even as he faces as much danger as his counterpart in the state police. And like medieval churchmen, our public-employee clergy positions are often nepotic. Families focus on getting the next generation a coveted spot at the DMV, the county assessor?s office, or the local high school. Like the vast tax-free estate of the clergy that both nearly broke feudalism and yet was beyond reproach, so too California?s half-trillion-dollar unfunded pensions and bond liabilities are considered sacrosanct. To question the pay or the performance of?a California teacher?or?prison guard?is to win the same scorn that was once earned from ridiculing the local friar. If suggesting that the man of god who was too rotund as a result of living freely on his tax-exempt church land was worthy of stoning, then so too suggesting that our teachers or highway-patrol officers are paid incommensurately with the quality of students in our schools or the safety on our roads is likewise?politically incorrect right-wing heresy.? Read more »

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