A mayoress with a fondness for muffins raises good questions about mean-spirited critics

July 29, 2010

Let’s hear it for the Mayoress of Christchurch, Jo Nicholls-Parker, who is insisting it is “perfectly legit to take some perks” such as coffee and muffins because she works fulltime for the city for free.

Mind you, Alf wonders how much coffee and how many muffins have been consumed by Jo then put on the mayoral tab.

His curiosity is all in the interests of accountability, which he zealously champions, and to satisfy his deep interest in the cost of living.

Jo has responded to criticism of her role after the nosy news media published stuff about her sitting in on breakfast meetings with her husband, Mayor Bob Parker, and spending ratepayer money on muffins and coffees.

According to Stuff:

The couple later paid back more than $600.

This leaves Alf curious about the number of muffins and cups of coffee one can consume for that money.

But he agrees with Jo when she says some people have shown “mean-spiritness”, although she had generally been well-treated as mayoress.

Read the rest of this entry »


Brash, budgets and bollocks – a story about task force spending has downplayed the savings

July 16, 2010

At first blush, Alf was tempted to think it’s a bloody good thing we Nats dumped Don Brash and opted for John Key as our leader.

Alf has a lot of time for dear old Don, but it seemed the bugger hasn’t kept his 2025 task force costs under control, and the task force’s budget is miniscule compared with the Government’s budget, which Bill English is keeping under very strict control.

If Don happened to be our PM, in other words, who knows how deeply into the shit we would have sunk by now.

Alf’s musings on the prospects of a budgetary blowout in the billions of dollars were triggered by a headline in the Dom-Post:


Brash blows fees budget

Bugger me, Alf muttered (as he is apt to do on being astonished by disconcerting news about his colleagues and mates).

Read the rest of this entry »