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On the credit card play

Written By: - Date published: 1:44 pm, June 10th, 2010 - 134 comments
Categories: Media - Tags:

I wasn’t going to comment on the credit card witchhunt as I think it’s prurient. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all in favour of transparency and frugality but I really don’t need to know that Shane Jones might have rented a porno or that Carter charged a bottle of wine for this or that. After all I didn’t think it was a big deal when Heatley did it either and I’ve been around long enough to see much bigger rorts both in politics and the private sector.

That said there are a few points I think need to be made:

  • Where was the rolling frontpage stuff story when National Ministers spending was released? Because, right now Hartvelt and Watkins look like they’re doing the Nats work for them.
  • Why have no spending records from the last National government been released? After all there are still quite a few ministers from that government back in cabinet. Such as Nick smith, Bill English, Tony Ryall, Maurice Williamson and David Carter.
  • Why has nobody from the Nats made any comment? Not even Farrar? Actually, I’ll tell you why. It’s because they know they need to stay away and let the journos do this or they’ll start to look like they’re muck-racking and then this kind of thing backfires (Labour could learn a lesson from this).
  • Tim Groser seems to have spent a lot on booze but it also looks like he’s up as the scapegoat to provide a perception of balance. I actually feel sorry for him especially after the trade-trip fiasco. It’s starting to look like the Nats see him as expendable.
  • Have the Nats done this while Phil Goff and his advisors are in China on purpose

And one last thing. Why has Annette King not fronted to the media, made a mea culpa, welcomed the new transparency and asked if the records for the last National government will be released? Has she gone to ground?

Update: Missed King on Nine to Noon. My mistake.

134 comments on “On the credit card play”

  1. Pat 1

    Annette King was on RNZ this morning (after 9am). Quite a long interview.

    Apology accepted.

  2. Why has Annette King not fronted to the media, made a mea culpa, welcomed the new transparency and asked if the records for the last National government will be released? Has she gone to ground?

    She fronted this on 9 to noon and did the mea culpa thing.

    This will obviously have everyone salivating. It is interesting at the number of comments that different topics attract.

    Right now (1:49 pm) we have

    – Destruction of the welfare state – 54 comments
    – Unwinding of the Maori Party coalition and the FSA deal – 28 comments
    – A discussion on Horomia’s eating habits and Groser’s drinking habits using Ministerial cards – 142 comments.

    What gives?

    • big bruv 2.1

      Having trouble dealing with the heat Micky?

      • mickysavage 2.1.1

        I am not sure that either party comes out of it well.

        Jones has obviously been stupid.

        Carter has justifications for most of it.

        Groser on the face of it appears to have a fondness for alcohol.

        The state has spent $50k collating information which may result in no repayment.

        My point was that I am actually not so interested in this as an issue, but the destruction of the Welfare system is something to really get upset about.

        • big bruv 2.1.1.1

          I am interested in this as an issue, such blatant abuse of tax payer funds cannot go unpunished, I do not care who it is or what party they belong to.

          And please Micky, you do your argument no good at all calling it the ‘destruction of the welfare state’.
          Nobody is calling for that (which is a pity) what they want is for it to be tightened up, they want a stop to the intergenerational bludgeing that was encouraged under Labour, they want an end to the child farming practises of so many of the slappers on the DPB, they also want an end to middle class welfare that is the WFF bribe.

          • Sam 2.1.1.1.1

            “they want an end to the child farming practises of so many of the slappers on the DPB”

            You self-righteous, sanctimonious fuck stain.

            I’m sure any mother, or father for that matter, on the DPB would gladly trade places with you for a week, then you can come back and be all high and mighty labelling those less fortunate than you ‘slappers’.

            People like you make me fucking ashamed to be a New Zealander. You make me sick you fucking piece of shit. Get the fuck off the internet and go jump off a cliff we’d all be better for it, especially you.

            • Andrew 2.1.1.1.1.1

              crikey!

            • big bruv 2.1.1.1.1.2

              Genuine mothers and fathers have nothing to worry about.

              However, I suspect from your reaction that I have hit a raw nerve, are you scared that you might be forced back into work or have your benefit slashed?

              BTW..I love the personal abuse, I often wish I could respond in kind but there are two sets of rules here, one for sub human labour supporters like yourself and one for hard working blokes like me.

              • Ari

                So people who need benefits no longer count as mothers or fathers?

                Grow up.

                • QoT

                  Nah, Ari, they just cease to exist as True Parental Figures and become mere automata of the Bludger hivemind – much like the Borg, only totally uncool. Still fictitious though.

              • Kevin Welsh

                “Genuine mothers and fathers” eh Big Bruv?

                And WHO has the awesomest job to make that decision? You or someother RWNJ who thinks the rules only apply to poor people?

                Fuck, I hope not.

              • McFlock

                bb,

                While you might be stimulated by personal abuse from folk who know nothing about you except the perverse little fantasies nestling in the depths of your tortured soul, I just pity you and your ilk.

              • Sam

                I’d put money on me pulling longer and harder weeks, week after week than you have ever done in your life.

    • comedy 2.2

      Hmmm have you forgotten the circle jerking that took place here

      Heatley story full of holes

      and here

      Heatley resigns both portfolios

      and here

      High ministerial standards

      People have a fascination for this drivel, just look at the sales of the NZ womens weekly etc- and the blogs are complicit in driving the partisan bullshit that ignores one lot while vilifying the other – politicians have played fast and loose with our money as long as there have been politicians.

  3. TightyRighty 3

    I see at least one journo has done some good homework, qouting a ministerial services manager saying that personal expenditure is not to be made on crown credit cards, regardless on whether or not it’s paid back. resignations all round please, mainly from the red team, but the blue team needs to put a few in the bin too.

  4. big bruv 4

    Once again Irish suggests that Ministerial abuse of a credit card is perfectly acceptable if it is a Labour minister but totally unacceptable if the Nat’s do it.

    Typical left wing hypocrisy.

    How about we sack the lot of them, Labour, National, Act, Greens and anybody else who thinks it is perfectly acceptable to abuse the trust we are forced to place in them.

    Any previous ministers or MP’s (or PM’s for that matter) who is guilty of the same abuse should have all her/his perks and pensions revoked.

    • Bright Red 4.1

      Big Bruv. I think you’re reading a different post from the rest of us. Where did Irish say that it’s Ok for labour to do it but not National?

      • Green Tea 4.1.1

        If you read between the lines, it’s there.

        • Ari 4.1.1.1

          Actually, the post more reads like “it’s not okay for National to do it either, and we need the information that tells us what they did.” I’m not sure how that could be construed as excusing anything.

  5. bobo 5

    Is all looking very one sided coverage today in media against Labour which is no surprise, huge headline Minister of pornography “I’m a red blooded male!” If anything I guess this will speed up a few retirements from both parties at the next election which is a good thing.

    • Brett 5.1

      Yeah that’s a ripper of a headline.
      Can’t help but laugh at that one.

    • SHG 5.2

      Well, that’s Jones’s career over. There’s no way he’ll be forgiven for making an admission like that.

      Admitting to being a red-blooded male, I mean. The Rainbow Labour Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Fa’afine mujahadeen will never tolerate it.

      • Ari 5.2.1

        Yes, because the LGBTQI crowd is so powerful it has developed into a secret left-wing conspiracy. All that whining about marginalisation and even the most effective advocates not always “getting it” is just a cover. Oh, and we’re only pretending to be LGBTQI because of all the nifty social benefits it brings. Which have yet to be explained.

        *bangs head on desk*

        • QoT 5.2.1.1

          Well obviously, Ari, you get fashion, humorously-named cocktails, and, um, secret volcano lairs?

    • Indiana 5.3

      Is Shane Jones the only red blododed male in Labour?

  6. Green Tea 6

    Nice smokescreen but this isn’t about the media unfairly picking on Labour.

    This issue is about MPs and the culture of entitlement that exists within the Beehive. It exposes the vast gulf between MPs and the rest of us who they claim to represent.

  7. bobo 7

    yep cant help but laugh at the headline, I guess Shane Jones who has always thought highly of himself is gonna wear that tag for mighty long time, all self induced but the media will latch onto the more embarrassing items over the more expensive..

  8. Where was the rolling frontpage stuff story when National Ministers spending was released? Because, right now Hartvelt and Watkins look like they’re doing the Nats work for them.

    There wasn’t a rolling front page because information was released orderly (every three months or something like that). Simply, there weren’t 7000 documents to go through.

    Had the Labour Government fronted with more fulsome OIA responses at the time, you wouldn’t have had it all released in one fell swoop.

  9. gingercrush 9

    Its all so disappointing to be perfectly honest. Too few scandals. Labour should be ashamed of themselves for being so boring. Except for Shane Jones and the porn movie. Ejaculating in hotels all over the world.

    Oh and mickey savage lets be honest. You’re not interested because except for Groser it involves Labour MPs.You’d be the first one in the circle jerk jacking off if it involved National MPs.

    • bobo 9.1

      that’s a better headline 🙂 “Shane Jones caught Ejaculating in hotels all over the world”

    • Umm let’s see

      $5k (subsequently repaid) misspent by Jones
      $150 odd on alcohol by Groser

      Destruction of night classes, savage cuts to pre schools, Health, Housing Corp, failure to do anything to make superannuation sustainable …

      Priceless!

      • TightyRighty 9.2.1

        not being able accept that they all spend outside the rules, despite it being made explicitly clear to them that, even if they payed it back, it was unacceptable. “predictable” to quote the judges of the air nz bloggers award.

        • Bright Red 9.2.1.1

          You’re predictable tighty and there’s nothing wrong with that in itself. What you predictably say is wrong, being consistent is not.

          I don’t see the problem with people have consistent views.

          And both posts on this topic today and the one from last week say that this spending is outside the rules and not OK.

          • TightyRighty 9.2.1.1.1

            I was talking to mickey dumbshit.

            you accusing me of being wrong is like accusing someone else of eating the last plate of wontons when parekura is at the table. nom nom nom

  10. gobsmacked 10

    Shane Jones has been a useful idiot.

    The story now is”porn”. Nothing beats that for a headline.

    All Goff has to do now is give Jones the “bollocking” he deserves, preferably without the mealy-mouthed “we all make mistakes” language that undermines the message.

    If National want to run with this, they have the bigger problem. Nobody knows or cares that Shane Jones is the opposition spokesman on … whatever it is. He can be demoted without fuss.

    The Trade Minister or Foreign Minister is a much bigger deal. I personally don’t think they should resign for this, and I’m sure Key doesn’t. But if he starts playing holier-than-thou, the media will be firing some pretty obvious questions back.

    • SHG 10.1

      Anything that removes a potential challenger and retains Goff as Labour leader is a win for National.

  11. A witch hunt????

    Open the other eye, Irish.

  12. Sanctuary 12

    So what is the total cost of all this inappropriate spending? $10,000? Less than that?

    How much did it cost for the information to be collated and given to our lazy and salacious media? $50,000 to $70,000 isn’t it?

    So we just spent $40-60,000 more of taxpayers money than we saved, and all so the media can jerk off.

    Shane Jones looks like a bargain in comparison.

    • Mark M 12.1

      the public servants who did the collating of the documents were getting paid any way.
      It hasnt cost any extra.
      The only thing changing is the expense code

      • Lanthanide 12.1.1

        And the opportunity cost of them not doing other work. Duh.

        • Mark M 12.1.1.1

          didnt realise they were actually running a business , in which case the opportunity cost could be a factor.
          But they arent running a business and therefore your Homer Simpson comment is a bit dim

          • Bright Red 12.1.1.1.1

            No Mark. Do you think these staff woud have just been twiddling their thumbs for 3 months otherwise?

            Of course not.

            Other work didn’t get done because of this. that’s opportunity cost

            • spot 12.1.1.1.1.1

              True, they could have spent the time answering equally trivial WPQs…..

          • felix 12.1.1.1.2

            Mark you retard if they weren’t doing this they could be doing something else.

            By your reasoning public servants don’t cost us anything at all.

    • Bright Red 12.2

      Don’t forget, Sanctuary, that Jones had already repaid the money years ago.

  13. Craig Glen Eden 13

    What a joke this is this, just goes to show how desperate National are. This is all they could come up with after Labour was in Government for nine years.We all know how good National are at digging dirt but then distancing themselves from chucking it, but this lot are not even good at that.

  14. Olwyn 14

    Annette King drew attention to the fact that applications to the OIA are often rejected because of the time and cost. This one, however, taking 5 months to compile, seems to be the exception. What is so horrible is that it treats the nation like a bunch of lab rats: tell them someone got $10 bucks they weren’t entitled to 5 years ago and watch them jump. anti-spam word: entitles

  15. Mike 15

    To be honest Shane Jones should resign, he’s a list MP and has let down the party that put him in that position over other more worthy candidates who don’t steal.
    And if he does resign that will put the onus on Groser to go as well.

  16. exbrethren 16

    Funny how the journalists that took bribes gifts of Pinot from Key-O aren’t writing headlines like Minister for Binge Drinking for Tim Groser.

  17. tc 17

    zzzzzz…..this issue cuts both ways and all it really confirms is they’re all far too loose with taxpayers money for their own good and with the large sums on housing allowances being dished out which rankles most ordinary kiwis this damages both sides equally.

    IMHO…..big deal we always suspected what we now know, that Shane Jones isn’t up to the task assigned. I see this and the likes of hadengaff have seen off Sideshow’s shonky blind trust assertions without a decent roasting…..job done CT.

    • Call me biased but the idea of a Prime Minister with $50m worth of assets in a blind trust that isn’t one and his making decisions even though there is a conflict of interest annoys me much more than the idea of a Minister paying to watch a porn movie on the Ministerial card but subsequently repaying the price of the movie.

  18. comedy 18

    Is it true that Shane Jones actually said he wasn’t a sex fiend ……is he retarded or is he not aware that this will be parroted back at him from the other side of the debating chamber ad infinitum until he retires.

    And I always thought he was one of the more intelligent MPs (despite his arrogance)

  19. Santi 19

    “This is a day of great shame. Not only have I embarassed myself, my family and party colleagues, but I got in to a pattern of expenditure that is inexcusable.

    “It’s beyond excuse and it’s a day of humiliation for me.”

    Jones said he would not resign today because he did not want to make a decision “in the heat of humiliation”.

    The words of a true conman. Labour should expel this liar or find itself complicit.

    • Ari 19.1

      Wow, someone’s reacting strongly. Strange how you don’t care so much when it’s alcohol or corruption that’s involved, but the minute something has some relation to sex the right jumps all over it.

      Not that I’m exactly comfortable with pornography either, but my problems with it are the exploitation of women involved, and less to do with the fact that sometimes people like to have a little alone time. Bloody stupid and inexcusable to pay for it using government funds, but no more so than any of the other bloody stupid personal expenses people have charged.

  20. Santi 20

    //www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/3796622/Shane-Jones-Minister-of-Pornography

    Confession in the open for all to see. Jones is history, finished.

    • Craig Glen Eden 20.1

      Yup its a disgrace all the labour guilty should resign right after Bill double Dipton English is fired and Gerrie and Heatley and …………………

      I wait with baited breath, come on all you sanctimonious wingnuts lets hear you chant for English to resign. Shit is that silence I hear? Funny that.

      • TightyRighty 20.1.1

        it was within the rules craig glen from eden.as the assistant general manager of ministerial services said in 2006, “the repeated use of ministerial credit cards for personal purchases is not acceptable. Even if the amount is subsequently paid back.” how do you defend that?

  21. Pete 21

    A quote from The Standard from a few months back:

    “That’s OK according to the PM because Heatley didn’t intend to break the rules. Well, I guess that’s OK then. Of course, you have to assume that Heatley is a total idiot in that case, a babe in the woods with no idea of rules that are obvious.

    I mean what kind of fool would you have to be to think that $70 of wine for your wife and yourself at your party conference was a legitimate ministerial expense?

    If he’s not a crook he’s an idiot. Neither ought to be qualifications for being a minister.”

    [lprent: You’re an idiot – read the quotation again. What exactly was the suggestion of what Heatley should resign from? Adding you to my auto-moderation because your comments so far have been idiotic and fall into trolling. ]

    • big bruv 21.1

      Beautiful Pete…just beautiful. 🙂

      • Pete 21.1.1

        Here’s the link:

        Heatley: Not a crook, an idiot

        One wonders if the Standard will apply their own erm…standards today?

        [lprent: read the post again – you’re acting like an idiot troll. ]

        • smokie 21.1.1.1

          I don’t think anyone here would deny Jones was an idiot, and if he were a Minister should have to resign.

          • Pete 21.1.1.1.1

            So you’re saying that being a crook or idiot is acceptable, so long as you don’t have a Ministerial portfolio?

            High standards in the Labour Party, certainly.

            [lprent: ok you’re definitely trolling – go away for a week. ]

            • Ari 21.1.1.1.1.1

              Yep, Jones should go, and I imagine he will, although there will certainly be people trying to defend him, just like there were for the National ministers doing the same sort of thing.

            • Pete 21.1.1.1.1.2

              So the Labour Ministers should have resigned at the time? But as they are no longer Ministers, they can’t resign as Ministers, so that makes everything ok?

              [lprent: Except that releasing spending records has only happened recently as a result of the problems that showed in the UK parliament. It comes down to burts favorite word – retrospective reinterpretation. I’m aware that it is good for the dogwhistles beloved in the sewer (eg Benson-Pope), but I’m not fond of debates based on that premise because they tend to follow the same turgid route each time – descending into flame wars.

              But what I was looking at specifically was that you were reinterpreting the post (you were referring to) to something that you thought – not what was written. That is irritating as hell to the authors, and again usually descends to flamewars.

              I stomp on people starting stupid flamewars – see the policy. ]

              • Pete

                The point is obvious, isn’t it?

                The original poster stated if a minister thought that putting something inappropriate (for whatever reason) on his credit card, like a bottle of wine, was ok, s/he was either a crook (implied) or an an idiot. In either case, the action means they aren’t qualified to be a Minister.

                Apply that to the Labour politicians. It matters not if they are current Ministers.

          • Santi 21.1.1.1.2

            Quite an interest interpretation smokie. Defending the indefensible and doing whatever it takes to protect the corrupt Jones.

            • Bright Red 21.1.1.1.2.1

              Um. Smokie called Jones an idiot and suggested he would have resigned if a minsiter. I don’t think that’s defending him.

  22. big bruv 22

    The story that just keeps on giving.

    As DPF points out over at Kiwiblog, if Jones does resign (as he should) then that would see the return of Judith Tizard.

  23. Mark M 23

    Groser is Trade Minister.
    That involves glad handing with a lot of foreign dignataries.
    Alcohol plays a big part in those relationships .
    If a few bucks spent on alchohol gets us trade access or a free trade agreement great.

    Dont confuse that with watching porn movies , buying golf clubs, kitchen utensils , fine clothes ,flowers for the boyfriend and rental cars for partners.

    A lot of the expenditure from both parties was booze and food which if incurred doing the Governments work is fine.

    • Ari 23.1

      Next you’ll be telling us it’s alright because he works long hours, lol. 😉

    • exbrethren 23.2

      So $1469 on tax-payer funded credit cards by the Minister for Binge-Drinking is OK? Has he paid any back yet?

      Getting smashed on planes is OK as well? Does that help get trade deals?

      22 items in 7 days from a mini-bar suggests more personal use than glad handing others.

      • TightyRighty 23.2.1

        it’s within MoH healthy drinking guidlines. unless they’ve changed since 2004.

        • exbrethren 23.2.1.1

          Getting drunk on planes is in the guidelines?

          • TightyRighty 23.2.1.1.1

            As i recall, he wasn’t drunk, and the information that he had been drinking was passed to the media third hand. no prizes for guessing who passed it. harldy reliable. and any way, it’s not the location, it’s the unit’s over a time period. maybe he is light weight?

            • exbrethren 23.2.1.1.1.1

              All very well, but I was disagreeing with Mark M when he said that it was fine for Groser to put his booze bill on the taxpayer. Has he paid it back yet?

              • TightyRighty

                i think a booze bill when on company trips is to be expected, within reason. $30 bottles of wine, fine. $50 bottles with clients, sure. $155 bottles of champagne? no. too far

                • Bright Red

                  Tighty. The rules are rules and personal alcohol is not within them

                  “as the assistant general manager of ministerial services said in 2006, “the repeated use of ministerial credit cards for personal purchases is not acceptable. Even if the amount is subsequently paid back.’ how do you defend that?”

                  Who said that?

                  Oh yeah, you.

                  It’s not a hanging offence. Groser and McCully should just pay the money back.

                  • TightyRighty

                    yea i said that. personal purchases dumbshit, just for you, include, bikes, flowers, golf clubs, massages, brekkie for you and the kids.

                    when on a work trip, my company pays for food and beverage, as i am away doing good work for them. it is reasonable that they pay, and as long as i don’t abuse it, there is no problem. i wouldn’t expect government ministers and there staff to go teetotal while they are overseas on crown business. i wouldn’t expect them to run up massive bills either.

                • felix

                  “Taking the piss” would be one way of describing it.

                  btw Ministers don’t have “company trips” and “clients”.

                  • TightyRighty

                    so going away on crown business wouldn’t fall into your category of a business trip?

        • toad 23.2.1.2

          That’s what Groser drank late at night in his hotel room after everyone else had gone to bed – not what he drank in total.

          It’s an interesting insight into what traveling Ministers do at the end of a busy day. Shane Jones wanks, Tim Groser drinks. Now, which would have the Minister in the better state of mind for the next busy day?

          Not that the taxpayer should fund either, I might add.

          • felix 23.2.1.2.1

            You make it sound like drinking and wanking are mutually exclusive activities but there’s nothing in the data to suggest that they don’t both drink and wank. Or drink, wank and rub tiramisu into their hair. All we know for sure is which of those activities they’re doing for free.

            • Anne 23.2.1.2.1.1

              Thanks toad. Thanks felix.

              Just wiping the tears of laughter. 😀

              • Anne

                oh and anti-spam: INTERESTING

                • Anne

                  And lets be clear:
                  Neither of them were doing anything different to generations of cabinet ministers before them… when away from home and travelling in the interest of NZ.

    • Bright Red 23.3

      Mark M. These are drinks in the minibar. Do you think he’s doing rrade deals over tiny wee bottles of Jim Beam in his hotel room?

      You can’t claim alcohol for perosnal use on your minsiterial card.

      Groser has to pay it back, like Jones did years ago.

  24. TightyRighty 24

    now we can see why michael cullen really axed the chewing gum tax cut. forgot the publics whining. it would have been the whining from his own caucus about not being able to afford porn, massages, expensive champagne, limo’s, more porn, to fund a chinese resteraunt, clothes, kitchen items etc etc on the public ticket.

    • TightyRighty 24.1

      Thanks mark. I forgot the golf clubs, bikes, sorry flowers for partners.

  25. Lanthanide 25

    I think what needs to be remembered, is that there’s are three primary ways this money can end up on a credit card:
    1. The minister deliberately set out to defraud and steal public money
    2. The minister used the credit card with the intention of fully paying it back in the future, because it was the most convenient thing to do at the time
    3. The minister made a purchase at the time, thinking it was within the rules but later being told to pay it back.

    There is a subset that can be applied to #2: forgetting to pay it back, as well as #3: not being alerted that it was outside the rules.

    #2 is easy to see with many hotel related expenses, as you generally give a CC # up-front and have all of the costs charged to the card when you check out. Also in the case of golf clubs, the minister said they didn’t have any other means of paying for the golf clubs at the time – maybe they left their wallet at the hotel by mistake.

    #3 is often seen with the various alcohol/wine purchases, where things were bought for entertainment purposes, but later decided to be out of line with the rules.

    Of course we can’t know for sure the real reason these things were put on credit cards, but I doubt that very many, if any, of the expenses fall under category 1. Of course National are hoping that the public will assume that all of this spending is #1 – commonly seen with people saying “I don’t care if they paid it back”.

    captcha: research

  26. FWIW, I’ve blogged that Groser’s expenses need to be closely scrutinised. Sure, his role, and that of McCully are all about relationship-building, and that’s often done over a drink. But there needs to be transparency to ensure that the Crown expenditure was justified.

    As far as Jones goes, the biggest issue is the changing stories throughout the day. First he hadn’t watched porn movies, then he “couldn’t rule it out”, then he remembered that he’d watched twelve movies, once the journos had pinned him down. Apart from any moral issues, Jones’ credibility has taken a hit today.

    • Bright Red 26.1

      Moral issues? Geez, I thought the right weren’t so PC.

      Didn’t you used to support serial adulterer Don Brash? What about Rodney Hide? And the rest?

      And let’s not pretend that Groser is doing trade deals over little tiny bottles of Jim Beam in his hotel room.

      He should pay the money back like Shane Jones did years ago. It’s not a sacking offence but he just needs to pay it back.

      • Inventory2 26.1.1

        And let’s not pretend that Groser is doing trade deals over little tiny bottles of Jim Beam in his hotel room.

        Exactly Bright Red; that’s why I’ve said that Groser’s spending needs to be closely scrutinised. If the turps he bought was for his personal consumption, he needs to stump up for it, and be subject to the same level of public scrutiny as other Ministers and former Ministers who have paid for personal items from the public purse.

        And as far as moral issues go, everyone will have their own opinions as to how far is too far. But if you’re going to start chucking names around of adulterers, remember that they come from all corners of the House.

        • Bright Red 26.1.1.1

          “But if you’re going to start chucking names around of adulterers, remember that they come from all corners of the House.”

          Yup. And that’s why I don’t have a moral issue with a bit of porn as long as he paid the money back..

          it’s you who suggested there’s a moral issue/

  27. Santi 27

    “Ms King says Mr Jones is not being asked to resign from the party”

    The gift that keeps giving. Jones will never get a quiet moment in Parliament from now on. Why isn’t Goff retuirning to NZ to handle Labour’s crisis? How convenient to be in the Far East.
    King is weak as piss.

    • SHG 27.1

      Look, I’m sure King knows that Jones only used taxpayer funds for pornography because it was a full moon.

  28. Bored 28

    Irish,

    Your description of this whole event as “prurient” seems suitable, but it has not stopped the usual RWNJs (and LW equivalents) from standing as Mr Morals, and piously pontificating. As a moderator you might take the opportunity of a few random bans for the infliction of tedious and sleep inducing blogs.

    On the subject the MSM are also at their “balanced” norm, lots on Carter and Jones, very little on McCully and Groser. I would also note that there is also a very low level of intraspection out there in the form of “there but for the grace of God go I” and “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.

    And on a more serious note: Jones was (note “was’) IMHO the best option Labour had for leading the party. Sad.

    • bobo 28.1

      This is what I said earlier in comments , is all Labour ministers on front pages, still waiting for the Nat party to front up and take their flack, looks like Carter and Jones careers are gone, whether that is not standing at next election or standing down sooner rather than later.., I doubt they will recover from this and rightly so , same should apply to nat mps in trouble.

      • toad 28.1.1

        Carter may well stand down – he is an Electorate MP. Jones can’t – as a List MP, that would bring Judith Tizard back, and that is something Labour just cannot afford.

        My bet is that Jones will at least see the term out. It’s a pity he blotted his copybook like this, because he was the only one I could see as being a successor in the short term to Goff. So looks like Labour is stuck with Goff, and probably facing another 3 years in opposition, unless the Greens can win over a good share of the soft Nat vote from last time around.

        • bobo 28.1.1.1

          Jones was a good debater in the house but he suffered a similar fate to Tamihere “premature leader in waiting syndrome”. Is having Jones in the house with constant porno jibes from media and opposition as bad as having Tizard back till next election ? I dunno maybe the porn thing will fade but I think his family will decide if his future should be more low profile..

  29. There can be grey areas over what you can charge such as meals etc. But no one could have a reasonable expectation that hotel porn is a legitimate work related expense.

    Kiwiblog

    When your employer requires you to travel away from home as part of your employment it seems reasonable that they meet those fundamental human needs that are reasonably expected to be met at home. Why is it any less important for a persons sexual needs to be met than their need for shelter and food ?

    Paying $19.90 for a pornographic movie seems a bargain in comparison to the alternative.

  30. When your employer requires you to travel away from home as part of your employment it seems reasonable that they meet those fundamental human needs that are reasonably expected to be met at home. Why is it any less important for a persons sexual needs to be met than their need for shelter and food ?

    Paying $19.90 for a pornographic movie seems a bargain in comparison to the alternative

  31. Anita 31

    Why have no spending records from the last National government been released?

    I would be extremely surprised if detailed credit card bills are retained for more than seven years.

    Surprised and disturbed in fact.

  32. logie97 32

    I may have missed something here but the last 8 years appears to be an arbitrary period. Was that because there was a change in the procedures?

    Why stop at 2002/3 – why not trawl right back to the beginnings of MMP perhaps.

    Clark’s government seems to be on a hiding to nothing here.

    Who originally sought the investigation?

    • Inventory2 32.1

      Members of the Press Gallery logie. I suspect the cut-off was 2003 on the basis that there may be no retention of records beyond the statutory seven years.

    • Anita 32.2

      You will find that General Disposal Authority 2 Financial and Accounting Records requires that they be retained for 7 years from date of last action, which will mean 7 years from the end of the financial year in which they were processed. So 2002/3 is correctly still held, while 2001/2 should have been destroyed.

      Try classes 8.2 and 8.3, they also helpfully list the relevant legislation.

  33. Daveosaurus 33

    “Why have no spending records from the last National government been released? ”

    Has anybody OIA’d them yet? And if not, why not?

  34. Shane Jones. Serial Porn King
    Tim Groser. Serial Alcohol Abuser??

    I suspect i might prefer the Porn King.

  35. didnt no porn was illegal good to see we have such a good media looking out for our morals. how much was spent on tvnz credit cards over the last 7 years.bill ralston always enjoyed a long lunch on the taxpayer.

  36. Sam 36

    For fuck sake, I will always vote Labour. But Shane Jones, possibly the next fuckin Labour leader uses his ministerial card to rent 20 pornos! And you want to pull the ‘oh poor me’ bullshit?

    Labour needs to sharpen it’s shit up, ask yourself, ‘should I use my card to rent pornos? My ministerial card?…And will I get busted for this?’….youporn is free!!!!!!

    Labour wants to stand up for the working man, the family struggling with 2 kids after a National budget trying to pay off a mortgage and buy milk and bread for the week. The same party who blasted Phil over some wine and then had a big wank when they brought him back….seriously sort your fucking shit.

  37. Herodotus 37

    This OIA request was great for some headlines, and a bit of titliation. But really Chris Carter spendt a feww $000 on some items over 8 years, Tim Grosser and Winny have higher spending habits. Given their roles what does anyone want for them to penny pinch given their valuable roles pats and present and other major ministers portfilios.
    There is alot on petty point scoring and poor basis of partisian actions being defended. In business what would a GM, senior mgrs or directors or major coys spend.
    For me the only shock is how not to handle this issue by Shane Jones. I know no MP lies yet Shane has got as close to this as Winny did a few years ago, by his changing story on ZB this morning that he was a movie buff but was not in the habit of watching buff movies, then tonight he was playing on semantics of what the meaning af habitual was. If he said yeah I did so what he would have increased his curdos. But he did not and now he has lost the battle of credability. Why cannot when caught with their hand in the cookie jar just admit guilt. Yet again someone in my mind failing 101 common sense. It was always going to come out.

  38. RedLogix 38

    Total hypocritical flim flam.

    I don’t give a rat’s patui if Jones was watching a bit of porno. Almost all adults do at some stage of their life. I have, and I’ll guarantee most of the hypocritical nonces commenting here have done so themselves.

    And when your checking out the next morning it’s usually in a bit of a rush …and only the most anally retentitive bother splitting the bill onto different cards at that point. Reimbursing within a month or so is not an unreasonable thing to do.

    Get over yourselves.

    • Sam 38.1

      Yes, but not on tax payer money.

      If you can’t stand back and identify the issues in your party and at least admit you fucked up…well…congradulations, you’re National.

      • RedLogix 38.1.1

        Yes, but not on tax payer money.

        Nah…the poor old taxpayer had no grounds for any sanctimonious whining at all. If it hadn’t been reimbursed as part of a regular reconciliation you might have had a tiny little point. But no.

    • Pat 38.2

      “Almost all adults do…”

      Funny that those same adults who are also Ministers of the Crown don’t manage to get the porno appearing on their ministerial credit card.

      Shane Jones is finished. He probably won’t resign, but Labour will park him so far down the List that he will have no chance in 2011.

  39. Herodotus 39

    Can anyone out there help me.
    Do not all MP’s get a $12k p.a. entertainment allowance that does not require any proof receipts of the amount being spent, or is this (If there is an allowance) only cover certain MP’s and exclude minister?

  40. Rosy 40

    “I don’t give a rat’s patui if Jones was watching a bit of porno”…. I do – The fact that Shane Jones watched not a bit of, but a heap of porn, and he knows his wife would have disapproved, and booked it up on the ministerial credit card shows a complete lack of respect and a sense of entitlement. He should resign or be sacked. Similarly if Tim Grosser doesn’t apologise and curb his drinking he should be out of there too. The others could have quite legitimate explanations, so far….

    • RedLogix 40.1

      If Jones had been watching war movies or horror flicks with people getting variously shot, bludgeoned, maimed and murdered, with human life reduced to it’s most demeaned, brutal, vile horror…no-one would have said boo.

      Hypocrites.

  41. aj 41

    Shane Johns watches porno.
    Key goes to sleazy strip clubs.
    Boys will be boys.

  42. Blue 42

    God this whole thing is really fucking boring. Ministerial spending is always subject to scrutiny – they have to provide receipts and their records are poured over by Parliamentary staff.

    There are no really outrageous abuses – just a few fairly minor personal expenses here and there. They probably shouldn’t have been there if you want to be anal about it – but it’s not the end of the world if someone charges some flowers or booze to their card once in a while.

    Hope the journos enjoy wading through 700 pages of fairly mundane expenses. It’s better than porn for them.

    I saw a great tweet from Greer McDonald today – a political reporter going through the expenses reportedly said ‘Ooh, John Key eats at BK too!’

  43. Sanctuary 43

    It is a load of flim flam, especially the rubbush from that idiot Alasdair Thomson that companies have strict rules blah blah blah. I call bullshit on him. I’ve had a corporate credit card and the rules entirely depend on who your manager is. The general rule everywhere is if you got something you probably shouldn’t have then you paid it back ASAP and you didn’t make a habit of it. And plenty of times people game the rules to put stuff on the company card that isn’t really legitimate. Corporate credit cards are used by responible adults, and are monitored by other responsible adults, and often the best people get cut a whole lot more slack than others because they are worth it. Which is really what this is all about.This mean spirited media fest is actually tall poppyism in action – no one can be allowed rise above the petty rules of meanest little tin pot loser reporter with a copy of the rule book. Hard working high performers (which is what a minister is) cut no ice with rule bound Colonel Blimps.

    The whole thing reeks of a rank hysterical hypocrisy and the biggest casualty seems to be common sense and perspective. Hypocrisy because we all know we’d do it ourselves if we were in their shoes. Common sense and perspective because these are piffling amounts that if anything should comfort us all that our politicians are basically decent men and women. For goodness sake, this is the worst that trawling through SEVEN YEARS of detailed spending can throw up! Twenty pornographic movies! Spare me. Its not exactly Mugabe’s billions in Swiss bank accounts is it?

    We expect our political leaders to be like us, empathise with us and understand the frailties, foibles and strengths of the “common man” – yet apparently we also expect them to behave like emotionless robots and to hold them standards of behaviour Jesus Christ himself would have trouble meeting.

    I am not saying it should be cart blanche, but these are human beings we are dealing with here. What do we want? Real people doing a real job, or a parliament of wierdoes with scrupulously clean credit cards?

    The media’s role in this disgusts me. They’ve cost the taxpayer tens of thousands of dollars to rake up basically nothing, and now they are behaving with all the grace and heroism of a pack of slavering hyenas who know an injured Wilderbeest can’t fight back. None of them have got the balls to run for public office, or disclose what they spend their credit cxards on, but they’ve set themselves up in this as high and mighty judge, jury and executioners. I was listening to that loathsome piece of slime on TV3 – the one that looks and sounds like Forrest Gump’s slightly dimmer little brother – mock both Tim Grosser and Phil Goff for perfectly legtimate spending and I thought something I thought I would never think – “Learn some respect for our elected public leaders, your little slimeball”.

  44. Sanctuary 44

    “…Q/ Are you a Labour staffer Sanctuary?”

    No. I’m a deep cover Manchurian candidate for high office in the Chinese Communist Party. But don’t tell anyone, OK?

    thnx.

    xxx

    • really 44.1

      I take it that is a yes. Just checking that you had a reason to post that insane interpretation.

  45. Sanctuary 45

    “…I take it that is a yes. …”

    Err, dude, the first word I wrote in answer to your question was “no”. That you interpret that as meaning “yes” just confirms I’d never take the risk of going on a date with you.

  46. really 46

    But I’d shout you a porno at the Westin.

    • RedLogix 46.1

      So never, ever, seen any porn in your whole life?

      Next you’ll be telling us you never masturbate, and only ever commit sexual intercourse for strictly procreational purposes.

      Get over yourselves.

      • really 46.1.1

        Not on anyone else’s dime buddy.

        • RedLogix 46.1.1.1

          Nah.. it got reimbursed ages ago.

          You keep omitting that cos it makes your argument look even more feeble than it is already.

  47. coolas 47

    130 posts on this trivial shite and the big issues get half the interest.

    Unbelievable. And what a sad sad indictment on the superficiality of NZ politics today. Makes me wanna stomp on the roof of a limo.

  48. gingercrush 48

    Garner said Chris Carter was being dropped from the front bench whenever that actually occurs. Though I doubt the latest spending scandal concerning him has anything to do with it. The fact is that while he remains a popular electorate MP (and he does just look how many people vote for him, it really shouldn’t be that high). The guy was never a particularly good Cabinet Minister in the house (he probably was fine doing the actual job of a Cabinet Minister) in that he couldn’t answer questions without sounding inept. In opposition he had clear difficulties with the Education portfolio hence why that was quickly dropped and given to Mallard. With Foreign Affairs his work with the whale issue was much better than the Greens effort. Though still with Labour needing some renewal on that front bench. Carter is an obvious casualty. As should be Jones who personally I’ve always seen as a liability.

    The real question is who gets to move to the front bench. Hopefully its Grant Robertson and Phil Twyford (though I don’t see him moving up unfortunately)

    Oh and to everyone pointing out why are we even discussing credit card issues. Lets face it despite this blog having some very good posts on real issues, i.e. the economy, childcare, global warming etc all that get decent posts. Its far easier for everyone no matter what side of the fence you sit on to talk about scandals and trivial issues.

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  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
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  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
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  • Rāhui day 4
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  • Letter to a friend
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  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
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  • Rāhui day 3
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  • A test of civil society.
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  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
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  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
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  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
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  • Statement from David Clark
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  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
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    18 hours ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
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    4 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
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  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
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    4 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
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    4 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
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  • Essential workers leave scheme established
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  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
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  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
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  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
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  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
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  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
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  • Advance payments to support contractors
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  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
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  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
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  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
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  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
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  • State of National Emergency extended
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  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
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  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
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  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
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    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
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  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
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  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
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  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
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  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
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  • COVID-19 updates
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    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
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    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
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  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
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