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The Grabbies

Written By: - Date published: 11:10 am, November 10th, 2009 - 43 comments
Categories: national/act government - Tags:

grabbies smallIntroducing ‘The Grabbies’, the prize for the minister who tops the field in corruption and/or abuse of taxpayer dollars.

So, who win the coveted (lol) Grabby this year? Take a look at our nominees below, it sure is a big field for just one year. Make your vote in the comment thread and add any other nominees or reasons for nomination that we’ve forgotten:

    helicopter-dropping-money

    Eat up, giant fishies!

  • John Key – He told us government waste would be a major issue for his government, and he’s sure shown how it’s done. Having two military helicopters fly 8 hours each so he could take a half hour flight to Kaikoura to go whale watching.
  • Judith Collins – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • Wayne Mapp – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • chopper-tolleyAnne Tolley – the Minister of Education who thought getting a ‘helicopter view’ of the issue meant a flight in a whirly-bird, – housing allowance rorter, – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • David Carter – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • Murray McCully – housing allowance rorter
  • Tim Groser – housing allowance rorter – involed in Richard Worth’s trip to India as a minister, trying to whip up some business for the company they both owned.
  • Phil Heatley – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict, – housing allowance rorter
  • Jonathan Coleman – covering up for Melissa Lee’s little ‘the NZ on Air money was just resting in my account’ incident
  • Maurice Williamson – won’t say if he used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • roddersrealsmallRodney Hide – the ‘Breakfast-gate’ ministerial speech/ACT fundraiser fraud, – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • Heather Roy – also participating in the ‘Breakfast-gate’ ministerial speech/ACT fundraiser fraud
  • Peter Dunne – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • Simon Power – used taxpayer funds for spousal flights, contrary to Key’s edict
  • Richard Worth – using his ministerial position to travel overseas and try to get more buisness for a company he owns, and whatever it was that got him fired
  • beggar billBill English – He’s Minister of Finance but it seems he’s most concerned with plundering the public coffers to improve his personal finances. The king-pin of the housing rort saga, he has claimed hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars in out of town allowances for living in his family home. He rang TVNZ officials (he is their shareholding minister) to rant and swear at him over the coverage of the rort. To make amends, they made him a million party political ad, starring himself with a script he wrote.

So folks, who will it be? We’ll annouce the winner tomorrow

43 comments on “The Grabbies”

  1. Is there a particular reason it is limited to ministers? Or the government?

  2. Seti 2

    Why restrict it to ministers when Taito and Chris I’m-gay-so-I’m-beyond-criticism Carter are the most obvious choices?

    Captcha – alternatives

  3. Daveo 3

    ‘oh boo hoo hoo, our heroes are being shown up for their corruption and waste’

    stop crying and start your own blog if you want to make it about the opposition. and word to the wise, banging on about taito just makes you look desperate and out of date.

    • TightyRighty 3.1

      and accusing Bill English of the same when he’s been cleared by a TRUE independent inquiry doesn’t? if you can’t handle a bit of criticism daveo, does that mean that your unsure of your beliefs?

      • TightyRighty 3.1.1

        and i vote for hide, he should know better than to use the “everyone is doing it to” line

  4. researcher 4

    My vote has to be for Hide. The perk buster busted perking.
    Captcha: legally!!

  5. So Bored 5

    Grabbies are a nice idea, my votes for Wodders.

    On that I suggest you run another award, the Golden Tedium, for the most boring politician, something that like him or loath him Wodders could not possibly win.

  6. r0b 6

    The last shall be first. It has to be Bill. Right down to applying for an extra $20pw for cleaning his house. It’s the attention to detail that gives him the edge (in what I must admit is a very strong field for this award).

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      Yep, I’m gonna have to vote for Blinglish as well on account of the amount of effort he went to to rort the NZ taxpayer.

  7. toad 7

    Yep, definitely Bill – there is a level of premeditation and organisation necessary to alter your family trust structure in order to claim an additional $24,000 that isn’t apparent with the other more impulsive troughers who just saw an opportunity for free money and grabbed it.

    And yes, r0b, the attention to detail in claiming the additional $20 for cleaning as well.

  8. Pat 8

    Since the rules won’t let him qualify for the trophy, Taito should at least be the first Hall of Fame inductee.

  9. randal 9

    hey dudes.
    I am really someone.
    I went for a ride in a jet to somewhere I cant pronounce and stayed in an expensive hotel and I have the pics to prove it.
    it was great.
    all these natives fawned over me for tips and the soap floated in the bath.
    must google my carbon footprint so I can skite about carbon particulates too.
    and you suckers paid for it.
    Kiss my b*m.
    oops sowwee.
    I thort we were being serious.

  10. Turn off the TV 10

    Somehow, in all this, the real troughers – those at the heads of our banks and various monopoly corporations – are unnoticed.

    I wonder if that’s an accident?

    • Daveo 10.1

      The Roger Awards should cover that.

      You’re right though, the expenses scandal in the UK was blown up by the right-wing Telegraph, and while justified came at a convenient time when the public were starting to ask questions about the corporate troughers who’d brought the economy to its knees.

      Suddenly all the questions about our corporate masters stopped and the focus went onto the pollies.

      • toad 10.1.1

        The Roger awards should be really competitive this time around – all those foreign-owned banks with their huge tax evasion scams and then the warm fuzzy advertising to try to redeem themselves with the NZ public.

      • Swampy 10.1.2

        The Roger Awards would not meet any recognised standards of objectivity, if you want them to be taken seriously choose impartial judges of political neutrality.

  11. felix 11

    Bill also makes himself notable by his prolonged in-the-face-of-all-logic denials that he’d done anything wrong.

    Should earn him a special white knuckle award on top.

    • lukas 11.1

      So tell me, what did the auditor general find again Felix?

      • Bright Red 11.1.1

        the A-G found that English wasn’t entitled to the money but had acted on bad advice.

        maybe it’s just me, but I want a finance minister with enough sense to not act on bad advice.

        also doens’t explain why English just happened to change his trust arrangements to enable the rort.

      • felix 11.1.2

        Nothing illegal – just like Winston Peters.

        What’s your point?

  12. mike 12

    You forgot the peoples favourite Chris Carter. He’s minced his way around the world business class for this prize – are going to deny him ’cause he’s gay’?

    • Armchair Critic 12.1

      These awards are for ministers, mike, not MPs. In case you haven’t noticed, it’s 2009 and Chris lost his ministerial warrant about a year ago.
      New standards of accountability were promised pre-election and we sure did get new standards, much lower ones for this crop of ministers.

  13. Is their going to be a list of the most racist, repugnant MPs also??

    Hone
    Locke
    Bradford (well ex MP now)
    Taito
    Brownlee

  14. Jared 14

    So conveniently after the British Expenses scandal its now “wrong” to use ministerial/mp entitlements for spousal air travel, oh thats right, don’t worry about Labour. Seeing as Goff hasn’t actually had the balls to tell his members not to utilise the 90% deduction, lets just criticise National, conveniently of course. Time for an OIA about Labour party use of the 90% deduction I think.

    • Bright Red 14.1

      ah, John Key set the standard that ministers were to pay for spouses’ travel themselves (ie not with tax payer money), you should speak to him if you have a problem with it.

      • Jared 14.1.1

        I don’t care what Key has said. MP’s are entitled to use their 90% deduction by law, if Key has said they shouldn’t use them then it shouldn’t just apply to Ministers, ALL MP’s should refrain from utilising the deduction, else it is just plain hypocrisy.

        • Bright Red 14.1.1.1

          but Key said it applied to ministers, he didn’t say anything about MPs

          and he has no authority over all MPs. He can however, being Pirme Minister and all, direct his ministers (and his party’s MPs if he wants).

          Don’t get confused. this ins’t a legal issue or an issue of keeping within the formal rules. This is a standard of practice that Key set for his ministers in public and the consequences of not doing so are political, not legal.

          Key ruled out ministers using tax payer funds for international trips worth their spouses so he could be seen to be setting a higher standard. We are perfectly entitled to ask that he live up it to.

  15. Seti 15

    Perhaps the previous government’s abuse of travel and other perks over nine long years could initiate their own awards. I propose the inaugural Golden Trotters, or The Porkys. Nominations include the ignominious Chris Carter and the corpulent Jonathan Hunt, however the overwhelming favourite would have to be the entire Labour party for its shameful and contemptible suckling of the public tit over the pledge card.

    • Bright Red 15.1

      so, you’re OK with National ministers behaving just as you claim the Labour ministers you despise behaved?

      Key promised new and higher standards. I don’t see what the problem is with asking him to live up to the promise

  16. FELIX:

    It’s all his actions from his past, threatening to throw people down stairs, anit a class thing to do.

    • felix 16.1

      Sounds nasty. I wouldn’t fancy my chances getting up a stairwell if Gerry were at the top and wanted me down.

  17. torydog 17

    Those thieving tories……not to mention hypocritical, oh and lack of argument as well from the tories…..when they cant defend the crims in the beehive they trot out stuff that happened years ago….”oh what about Helens speeding car” PATHETIC and soooooooooo predictable!

  18. tc 18

    Yes they all may have done it, as the rules permit it.
    However the last PM had guidelines that were enforced, on any number of areas like knowing if you have the numbers, and where she copped it was following due process…innocent till proven guilty (Field) and by having the political nous to know when to act and when to let it ride.
    Compare this to NACT inc and take note as JK will go down as the worst PM since Muldoon who like Howard in OZ enjoyed a weak opposition to claim 2 elections more than he would have otherwise……you labour powerbrokers listening ?
    History will show a lazy gov’t hobbling genuine long term initiatives with ‘L’ plate ministers being propped up by the more talented like Blinglish….scary indeed.

  19. Homo Domesticus 19

    Friends. Beware the gloating, baby-kissing rug wearer John donKey. He is a media-friendly glove puppet; the cabinet do not respect him and are not scared of him. They and Key all bow to the same bosses Brash, Douglas and co. Rise friends, throw out Key before it is too late. The bell tolls for Auckland, soon to be asset stripped and sold to those with head offices in Melbourne and Geneva.
    Homo d.

  20. Daveosaurus 20

    Richard Worth, without a doubt. Whatever it was that he did, unlike whatever the rest of them did, it got him the boot from the Government that was “comfortable” with the others’ dodgy dealings.

  21. Craig Glen Eden 21

    Really starts to make you think what it was that Worth actually did, given Key is relaxed about everything else.

  22. Swampy 22

    Surely you’d agree it’s fair if the government decides to release all the allowances use for the period back to 1999?

    We might get a better comparison then.

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