On Tuesday when he opened Parliament for the year, our Prime Minister, Mr John Key, mentioned some significant changes to the benefit system that his Government intends to make in 2010. And they look to me like opening up some very significant holes in the safety net approach we've historically had to welfare.
If these changes do go through then there will be people out there, perhaps people like you and me, perhaps even you or me, who cannot access any financial support whatsoever from our government in times of difficulty.
Although Ms Bennett said final decisions had still not been signed off by Cabinet, this is expected to mean implementing National's election promise to make unemployed people reapply for the dole after a year and "do what it takes to secure employment".
"This may include practical training, attending a basic skills course or attending drug and alcohol rehabilitation," the policy said.
"After that, they will be required to actively look for a job, to go to any job interview they are referred to, and to accept any offer of suitable employment, whether fulltime, part-time, temporary or seasonal.
"If they do not comply with these obligations, they will have their benefit reduced in the first instance, then suspended and then cancelled." [my emphasis]
This is freaky stuff. This is leaving people out there potentially with nothing if they don't accept whatever is offered.
And this is a Bad Employer's field day - accept my awful pay offer, doing work you would hate and which would destroy you, and put up with my sexual harassment, or no more dole for you. Oh and by the way, I can fire you within 90 Days for no reason at all and then you're even more poked.
I couldn't do paid work for three years, through no fault of my own. And even if it had been my fault, even if I had screwed up big time, wouldn't you, as a fellow human being, rather I had enough funding to feed and clothe myself, to keep myself in decent housing, to provide for my child, than have nothing at all? Because it could be any of us, anytime, and we should never forget that.
And that's why what our Government is planning to do is so wrong. It is a total and utter failure of compassion; it reflects a world view that blames those in a bad place for it and actually seeks vengeance against them for it by withholding support when it could be given.
You don't have to be religious to see that this is immoral. And I don't know if we can stop it.