Anne Tolley

Turns out the government has been wrongly paying some accommodation supplement recipients for the last 23 years. Here's my overly cynical and (I hope) deeply wrong take on the advice MSD will give the government about how to respond.

RNZ's Morning Report led off today with a story about a "coding error" that has meant some recipients of accommodation supplement payments have been wrongly paid since 1993.

Trouble-shooting the CYF reforms: Yes,we need to act, but there are two big political calls underlying the radical overhaul that raise questions about whether this is the best way to go

This is what everyone agrees on: Child, Youth and Family needs to change. No-one can look at how we deal with the troubled kids that need help from government agencies and say it's going swimmingly. So the question is not what we do, but how we do it.

Talk to social workers and experts trying to get New Zealand's most troubled kids safely through to adulthood and the impression left is that the best thing to do may also be the thing that's most politically anathema to this government

When politicians start talking about "radical overhauls" and headlines speak of "sweeping changes", I confess a little scepticism, even nervousness.

Huge changes are being made to early childhood education under the cover of the earthquake, as the government warms up for welfare reform

I was genuinely shocked to learn yesterday that from July 1 this year early childhood services will be allowed to have up to 150 children and/or 75 under-2s in one centre.

Baby farming, here we come.

Labour is going after National on early childhood education costs, and for once actually has the politics on its side and the government on the ropes

Smaug, the mighty dragon in The Hobbit, looked near invulnerable when Bilbo first laid his eyes on him. His hide covered in scales, jewels encrusting his soft underbelly.