We’re from the Government, and we’re here to “help”

The SA Labor Government has been the loudest advocate for wind power and, to make damn sure the turbines go up anywhere the developers want, it has the slackest planning rules of all States.

With wind power making up around 35% of SA’s total generating capacity, it’s no surprise that it has the highest power prices in Australia, if not the World.

But just like the “pyromaniac fire-fighter” who loves setting the country alight just to enjoy the “thrill” of being on the fire truck that puts it out, the SA Government is planning to rush to the aid of those who can no longer afford what has been a basic and affordable commodity for more than 50 years. Tom Playford would be turning in his grave.

In Daily reports that SA Labor plans to run “re-education” camps for SA’s poorest and most vulnerable, where, no doubt, they will be given survival tips such as: how to effectively light a home with candles; how to cook with a kero stove; and how to stay warm by using more blankets. All sound stuff.

200x160_cold_woman

Having helped to send power prices through the roof, it only makes sense that SA Labor “weens” the elderly, the unemployed and the poor off of a commodity that really should be reserved for the best and brightest.  Ah, those good ‘ol Labor “values”.

Power price stress: free clinics for the vulnerable
In Daily
Wednesday, 22 May 2013
Liam Mannix

THE State Government will run free public clinics to teach people how to deal with increasing electricity prices.

Under the utilities literacy program, which went out to tender this month, the Government will also give financial counsellors training in dealing with power companies, in an acknowledgement of the impact increasing utilities prices are having on vulnerable consumers.

A peak welfare group says it’s an acknowledgement from the Government that budget cuts to charities providing financial counselling were misguided.

The State Government put the $1 million utilities literacy program out to tender this month. The program was announced in last year’s budget.

The program’s tender documents acknowledge increased utility bills are pushing many to financial crisis.

“The community services sector has seen increase in demand for emergency assistance and financial counselling services recently and this program intends to respond to these increases by identifying clients at an earlier stage of intervention or even prevention, therefore reducing the burden on the crisis end of the suite of services available to those in financial hardship,” the tender documents read.

“The purpose of the program is to reduce the prevalence of financial hardship and vulnerability for low income earners and fixed income recipients and aims to build the capacity of individuals and further prevent financial difficulties through early access to utility and financial literacy that empowers clients to maximise their strengths and capacity building.”

Nationally, retail electricity prices rose 72 per cent between 2007 and 2012, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In 2010 Australians spent 2.6 per cent of their income paying their power bills, according to ABS figures.

The South Australian Council of Social Service has told Indaily “almost everybody” it sees is struggling with utility bill payments.

The utilities literacy program will be offered to charities within SA that operate free financial counselling services.

Counsellors will be taught how to interpret power bills and how to negotiate payment plans with electricity companies.

Public education clinics about how to deal with high electricity prices will be run at places such as shopping centres.

The tender says these clinics would be “community-based, utility-focused education clinics to identify and assist in addressing the immediate needs of the individuals in relation to utility debt and financial hardship”.

More financial counsellors will be brought into the system to help people in acute need.

In 2010 the State Government cut funding to financial counselling services run by welfare organisations, which led to a reduction in the number of counsellors by about a third according to the South Australian Council of Social Service.

SACOSS executive director Ross Womersley said the utilities literacy program was an admission there was unmet need from the community for financial counselling.

“I think this was in part a recognition or an attempt to respond to that previous decision. but it goes nowhere near far enough in terms of replacing the effort that previously was available,” he said.

Womersley said rising electricity prices were having a huge impact right across the community.

“It’s a huge pressure. We hear reports that almost everybody that turns up at a free financial counsellor will be talking about the difficulties they have paying utility bills.

“There are new groups of people, people who previously would never have thought of approaching an agency seeking assistance, who are stepping forward – because the pressure has grown so great for those on lower incomes, (such as) self-funded retirees who may have lost substantial parts of their income as a result of the global financial crisis, people in insecure work, or people who have some work but not enough.

“There’s also a very big group of people who are on some sort of income support program.”
In Daily

So, Croweaters, it must make you feel good to know your Government is there to “help”.

The SA Government has backed wind power to the hilt; and all to pander to a bunch of inner city trendys who couldn’t care less about those less fortunate than themselves. If you haven’t got an Arts Degree, a MacBook Air and 1,000 facebook “friends”, you really just don’t count.

The most vulnerable people are being punished to satisfy an urban “elite”, wallowing in perverse “green” ideology and dripping with barely disguised contempt for country people.

Remember, these are the people that refer to people in rural communities who have to suffer the adverse effects of giant industrial wind turbines as “road-kill” and “collateral damage”.

This is “social re-engineering” of the most obscene and insidious kind. And State governments are in it up to their necks – supporting a policy that results in a sea of giant wind turbines that wreck rural communities for no real purpose, other than making a few inner city “progressives” feel good about themselves – and then punishing the rest, by forcing them to pay for it.

There are a growing number of people who now dread opening their power bills because, after the shock has worn off, they have to work out how to pay it, and on time.

For many this means lots of baked bean dinners (or worse, nothing) just to avoid having the power cut-off. No laughing matter for the infirm or the elderly who really do have to worry about how to keep warm in winter or cool in summer – these are matters of survival – not ideology.

pleasesiriwantsomemore

The greentard tells us that these are the sacrifices that must be made to “save the planet”. STT puts the poser: what about your mother or grandmother – are they to be “road-kill” too?

But note – what was said by In Daily is about the present situation and power price increases to date.  Well, the poorest haven’t seen anything yet.

As pointed out previously, if the RET/REC policy remains the same, retail power prices will double again over the next 2-3 years.

So here’s an STT investment tip: buy Heinz shares now. If this policy of State sanctioned power price punishment is kept up, baked beans will be jumping off the supermarket shelves.

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Group Buys Heinz

For the sake of the Country, its poorest and most vulnerable the RET/REC policy must be scrapped.

This is no longer about an “ideological” divide – it’s about those of us equipped with human compassion and decency doing something for the least fortunate – versus the rest.  See you at the Rally, June 18, Parliament House, Canberra.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.

Comments

  1. We’re from the Government, and we’re here to “help” – then STOP THESE THINGS

  2. Jim Hutson says:

    How do you pay off on the drip feed a utilities bill? Doesn’t it come in every 3 months, and each 3 months after that and continuing?

    Our country is going down the gurgler at warp speed although the Politicians don’t seem to notice. At the end of each week, there is hopefully something left over in the pay packet. That bit is what makes us consumers and produces jobs. That last little bit. And when that last little bit is eaten into by power bills it also takes away Australian jobs. European countries have learn’t the hard way about this. So much for Wind Turbine jobs, look at their unemployment levels and the health of their economies!

    It bloody well makes me sick to watch the millions of dollars, wasted dollars, that drive past my front door every morning at 7.20 am, to build the Gullen Range Industrial Wind Complex. And for what? So that a country, with one third of one percent of the World’s population, can some how save it by reducing so called ‘Global Warming’, which has been discredited, while on the other hand, selling tens of millions of tons of coal to Asia, India, to produce cheap electrical power for them to create jobs and wealth for their people.

  3. Jackie Rovensky says:

    $1 million to tell people how to negotiate with an energy supplier! What a disgrace, a utilities literacy program – if they hadn’t supported a corrupt useless industry, thereby creating the problem, it would not be needed.

    The SA Government is treating people who are struggling to keep their heads above the weight of their utility bills as if they are illiterate, unable to manage their home accounts, have no idea how to live within their means, too stupid to understand that it’s their fault they cannot pay ever increasing bills, that all it takes is a phone call to a utilities company to solve the problem.

    It’s time Weatherill and his lot stood down and apologised to all for their wasteful and reckless mismanagement of this state’s finances and essential development infrastructure processes, resulting in no gain but plenty of pain.

Trackbacks

  1. […] analysis King might even be on the light side when he says half, but why quibble?  If you’re in the poor house because you can’t pay your power bill – it doesn’t matter whether the RET added […]

  2. […] apparently, welfare groups like UnitingCommunities must have missed the SA Labor Government’s offer to teach the growing number of people who can no longer foot their power bills the benefits […]

  3. […] SA Labor government is planning to run workshops to help a growing number of South Australians deal with having their […]

  4. […] Campbell Newman can take a leaf out of the SA Labor Government’s playbook and start teaching those living North of the Tweed how to cook with kero stoves and light […]

  5. […] looked at wind power driven price punishment in Germany here and here and in South Australia here and […]

  6. […] entitled to profit anymore from the misery of the poorest and most vulnerable, who can no longer pay their power bills thanks to wind power and the REC […]

  7. […] on the heels of the SAs Labor government’s effort to “help” the growing legion of people who can no longer afford to pay their power bills, another […]

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