Question 1. Which of these are ‘front-line’ staff and which are ‘back office’?
a) the extra staff members for National and Maori Party MPs that the government has just found money for?
b) the fines collections officers the Ministry of Justice is firing because the government can’t find the money to keep them?
c) the person hired to liaise between Judith Collins and Barry Mathews after ‘Crusher’s bark turned out to be worse than her bite?
d) the personnel that won’t be recruited to fill empty positions in the Army and Air Force because their budget is set to be cut?
Answer: the distinction between front-line and back office is stupid. You can’t have a front-line without support staff, ask the army. Strange that there’s plenty of money for extra people in government MP’s offices but none to pay for public servants though.
Question 2. Is it sensible to borrow money for more staff for MPs but not to invest for paying future retirement costs?
Answer: No. This the Key school of fiscal management, where borrowing is only to pay for things you don’t like.
Question 3. Will more staffers enhance the Maori Party MPs’ mana?
Answer: They better hope it does because voting for tax increases for the poor, then saying you felt pressured into it, and then being too scared to answer questions on the matter in parliament sure doesn’t.