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 »


Pointers to a bleak but not black Budget

May 8, 2009

Those who like sniffing out clues to what will be in the Budget would have learned nothing significant from The Boss yesterday, when he talked to Business New Zealand in Wellington.

Essentially, he destroyed any illusions about it being a generous budget that might have survived the release of the crown accounts for the nine months to March.

The accounts showed there ain’t much scope for extra spending without borrowing, and John Key and Bill English are reluctant borrowers.

On the other hand, Key (the previous day) was trying to disabuse us of the idea it will be black budget.

“I wouldn’t describe it as black, in fact we are spending a lot of extra money on health and education, but beyond that there is not a lot more to go around,” said Key.

Finance Minister Bill English said he would be scaling back some of the spending promises made by Labour, but there would still be increases.

Read the rest of this entry »


Focussing on fiscal fillip and folly

February 17, 2009

A big hurrah went up from right-leaning quarters of the blogosphere after the Business Roundtable’s Roger Kerr sounded out on the shortcomings of fiscal stimulus in the NZ Herald.

Kerr is particularly bothered by the pressure on the government in these recessionary times to increase its spending to give the economy a fiscal lift and likens increased spending to throwing petrol on a fire.
Read the rest of this entry »


Rongoa spending is wrongoa

January 20, 2009

I’ll be dropping in on Health Minister Tony Ryall, when next in Wellington, to demand an amputation: especially at a time when government budgets are being cut, he must cut off the supply of $1.9 million of public money to Maori traditional healers through the Ministry of Health.

According to a report in The Press, these healers are the only alternative-treatment providers directly receiving public health dollars.

In other words, our policy on alternative treatments is race-based. Read the rest of this entry »