However, it's not just important that we help to feed those children but it is important how we feed them. We need to be careful that in dealing with dysfunction we do not generate more. For example, if a single mum is struggling to get by, and her son's school starts providing breakfast then it's likely that she'll stop feeding him in the morning. The challenge then is to devise a way that businesses such as Tasti can work in partnership with homes and families, rather than taking on their role and placing greater burdens on schools.Indeed: the slattern will stop buying breakfast and will spend the money on Vodka Cruisers and party pills. Before you know it, she will be up the duff again and the Tasti Foods will have another mouth to feed.
More importantly, Mr Key's proposal simply has not been thought through. It is all well and good involving businesses in these matters but only if there is profit to be made. As noted above, Maxim relies on corporate donors; at the last count these included Pumpkin Patch, the CD and DVD Store (ever wondered why they have a Christian Music section - now you know) and evangelical souvenir manufacturers the Derek Corporation, the people who put the fundamentalist back in fun. Does Mr Key really expect these good people to start feeding children?
Come on John, there's money to be made! After all Maxim's efforts to bring home the vote for National in 2005, Mr Key should realise that it is time to start putting something back into the business community. Maxim's vision of Civil Society is all about replacing state provision with volunteers and businesses. The volunteers will do it for nothing, just as they always do, but the businesses need payment. It is National's job, once duly elected, to ensure that all these services provided by the state are privatised.
Remember John: it's about taking, not giving.