Yes, but . . .

The Northland Age - - Opinion -

Your cor­re­spon­dent H. Westfold (Let­ters Oc­to­ber 2) writes co­gently about the cause of our so­ci­etal col­lapse, and I thank him for his wis­dom.

How­ever, he is wrong about one thing. He writes that “much of the un­em­ploy­ment is sim­ply the re­sult of au­toma­tion and com­put­er­i­sa­tion”, as if there are now fewer jobs to go around. The facts say oth­er­wise.

Data from Statis­tics NZ re­veal that, in 1961, 35 per cent of our to­tal pop­u­la­tion was em­ployed in full­time paid work. Those were the days when we were proud of our “full em­ploy­ment”.

Statis­tics NZ data also re­veal that, in 2016, 38·7 per cent of our to­tal pop­u­la­tion was em­ployed in full­time paid work. And we say we have se­ri­ous un­em­ploy­ment. In fact, we have more jobs now than ever be­fore.

Our so-called un­em­ploy­ment, which be­gan to raise its ugly head in ap­prox­i­mately 1970, is sim­ply caused by hordes of young women post­pon­ing child­birth, and thus re­main­ing in the work­force longer now than in 1961, and young mothers to­day putting their chil­dren into care and re­main­ing in the work­force.

As a con­se­quence, many who would pre­vi­ously have been fam­ily bread­win­ners are now out of work, and that un­em­ploy­ment is se­ri­ous in these times when we have more jobs than ever be­fore.

But don’t ex­pect any po­lit­i­cal ac­tion

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