Worth the Bill

Written By: - Date published: 7:05 am, August 5th, 2009 - 35 comments
Categories: bill english, corruption, crime, john key, national, national/act government - Tags: , ,

English looking resigned ecuWhat would you call it when you collect $900 a week by false pretenses?

What would you call it when you tell the Electoral Commission and Ministerial Services that you live somewhere other than where you, your partner and your children actually live and work?

And if you did those things while holding an office presumably subject to the very highest standards of accountability, what would be the worthy thing to do?

Time to do the right thing Bill, before your ‘leader’ does it for you.

35 comments on “Worth the Bill”

  1. Craig Glen Eden 1

    Good post Sprout, thats the issue. The others with what they have done is legal, maybe does not look good particularly in these financial times, but is within the law, however English’s situation I don’t believe is.

    One other point to add to this, wasn’t there some bloke who called him self the perk buster. Obviously he was not to good at his job aye, and where is he now, moved on to set up some bargain sales for his private sector mates. As they say you can Rodney but you cant Hide!

  2. It seems to me that there are two lines of inquiry that the media have not picked up yet.

    1. Did English deliberately restructure his trust so that he did not have to declare it in parliamentary register of pecuniary interests?

    2. Why was the property initially transferred to “Mary Agnes Scanlon” and then to “Mary Agnes Scanlon English” the day after? Why did the solicitor not just register a change of name instead of a transfer? Stuff up or attempt to hide and confuse?

  3. greenfly 3

    What do you call it?

    Rooooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrt!

    (sung to the tune of a malodorous fart)

  4. mike 4

    “It seems to me that there are two lines of inquiry that the media have not picked up yet.”

    Funny this story hasn’t appeared on the news this morning yet – dominated by a corrupt ex-labour MP) maybe just as well though as like every other ‘story’ labour have planted this one is also set to blow up in their face.

    • Craig Glen Eden 4.1

      As I have said before Mike cut the lines put up or shut up. Name a Labour Mp/ Minister that has done what English has done! Their probably is one that I don’t know about, but don’t try and distract with other crap from other chat sites.

      None of us on the left are defending Field we think what he has done is wrong, he has been found guilty. There are lines that could be used to defend but I wouldn’t run them because I don’t agree with whats been done by Field.

      Do you believe that a minister claiming the living away from home allowance when he and his family have/are living in Wellington is morally and legally right?

      • the sprout 4.1.1

        yes, Labour can indeed afford for this to ‘go nuclear’, it won’t be MAD.

      • Chris G 4.1.2

        Just goes to show how dreadfully hypocritical and zealously one-eyed people on the right are. Its actually unbelievable that they cant admit English is in the wrong and that a regular joe bloggs on $40k a year would be fuming over it.

      • Swampy 4.1.3

        Marian Hobbs

        • felix 4.1.3.1

          I remember that.

          She had to resign from cabinet, was investigated, and cleared of any illegal behaviour.

          Then she paid the money back anyway (probably told to by Clark).

          Those were different times though. I doubt we’ll see that kind of accountability from Key and Mr Bill.

  5. Deciduous 5

    Labour really need to be careful what they are doing with this shitstir, it will go nuclear soon and I can guarantee there is more dirt on Labour after a decade in govt.

    • Tigger 5.1

      Yes, but Labour are not the governent, not slashing public spending while failing to cut Ministerial services and not preaching belt tightening while double dipping.

      • Deciduous 5.1.1

        The economy is f*cked. Lets see what happens regarding MP’s trough snuffling across the board.

    • roger nome 5.2

      Deciduous:

      Seems to me like you guys on the right are getting ever more worried. What better sign could there be that the left should go all out on this? The Greens especially can afford to – they had the higher accountability standards introduced after all.

      English’s bacon would seem cooked, no matter how often you squealers repeat “Nepolean is always right”.

      • Swampy 5.2.1

        That’s the Greens who have the taxpayer accommodation subsidy paid into their super fund is it?

        The greens ceased being the paragons of moral virtue in Parliament a long time ago, you need to get up with the times.

  6. aj 6

    I think we need more details to round out the discussion, since public money is involved. Bill English needs to specify those personal and family reason why he altered his trust, and we need to know the full details of income that his family receives.
    C’mon John, you backed Bennett on the same call.

  7. vto 7

    Big allegations there sprout. If true then it would be unacceptable.

    However, given the dry drivel dust that has come up on posts here, including by you, the last few days claiming that it is only national ministers that rort the system I wont be making any effort to ascertain whether your claim is true or not. I will wait for something more credible.

  8. rainman 8

    You’re kidding right? None of these jokers have any bloody integrity. Key will never fire English, and he ain’t gonna resign either.

  9. lprent 9

    Labour doesn’t seem to be doing much with it. However the writers here are. I suspect that there is stuff on labour that could be an issue. However that isn’t a issue for the writers here. Also I think that after the Hobbs & Bunkle thing in 1999, the labour mp’s lost the hubris that the nact’s are showing now.

    I have to congratulate the greens from bringing this issue up. We need to be aware of what mp’s are doing

  10. andy 10

    Wrong spin today guys, have you not had the crosby/hooten email yet?

    todays talking point bought to you by theHerald:

    ‘Or, more charitably, might we suppose that new ministers were simply too busy to notice they were not exactly practising the economies they preached? They are merely heirs to a long tradition. Labour Governments have been as keen as National to award ministers generous accommodation, including Wellington waterfront apartments.’

    See, Bill was so busy getting the budget to be budgety and stuff he missed the extra $450 or so he was getting in da bank.

    Keep up with the ‘Little Famiies’ and ‘Labour planted the story’ lines tho please.

    Even though the greens got this particular ball rolling.

  11. MikeG 11

    Why is Bill English enrolled in the Clutha-Southland electorate? From the elections.org.nz website:

    “Residential Address
    This is your home address. A New Zealand Post Box or rural delivery number isn’t enough to describe your address. We require your full home address so we can enrol you in the electorate in which you ‘reside’. You “reside” at the place where you choose to make your home because of family or personal relations or for other domestic or personal reasons. Just because you may be occasionally or temporarily absent from that place does not mean that you do not reside there. Being absent from your place of residence because of your employment or education (or your spouse’s employment or education) does not affect it either.The most important factor in working out where you reside is where you choose to make your home.”

    Surely the above means that he should be registered to vote in Wellington.

      • Craig Glen Eden 11.1.1

        Oh shit Mike I bet it hurt typing the last line “The most important factor in working out where you reside is where you choose to make your home.’

        So why should the tax payer pay the Bill for Bill when he has chosen to have his wife, kids RESIDE in Wellington for the last how many years.

  12. vto 12

    This whole matter is a serious conundrum (no matter the colour of the particular govt or minister of the time).

    Long term politicians such as Bill English or Helen Clark know, when they enter politics, that they will spend probably the majority of their time in Wellington. As such, to claim that their home is outside Wellington is simply silly. They effectively have two homes and any new rules should take that into account.

    But then you have some who are in Wellington only briefly, such as Worthless or Bunklebunkle. So the circumstances of those types are quite different from Clark or English. But they operate under the same rules.

    Sheesh, I dunno. Perhaps we should just flag the rules altogether and let the pollies loose to do the ‘right thing’ and claim what is reasonable in the circumstances. After all they get entrusted with $50billion-odd a year of our money to spend reasonably in the circumstances and they seem to do ok with that. Don’t they????

  13. Relic 13

    Even if the rules are changed and Bill has to eventually pull his head in and pay his own way there is now a somewhat wider understanding among the ‘public’ that a) tories like secrets, and b) feel ‘entitiled’ to taxpayers cash. Priceless.

    There is hypocrisy by the shovelfull in this story. Judith Collins on TV3 last night was unwilling to “breach privacy’ when asked which MP was renting her property, come on Judith do a Paula, the story needs rounding out.

    • Pascal's bookie 13.1

      I think, (from memory) that Collins was refusing to say whether or not her tenant is an MP, using the privacy excuse. I agree that there is a certain irony there.

      If the tenant is not an MP though, I can’t see how saying so would breach their privacy. It’s not like we could take the fact that they are not an MP and guess who they are or anything.

  14. tsmithfield 14

    This seems to be a endemic problem with MP’s. I see that Phil Goff is also in the same situation:

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/double-dipping-ministers-face-scrutiny-107004

    If MPs were paid a higher salary without the perks, then there would probably be no complaints. Given the responsibilities that ministers have in relation to the private sector, they are probably being underpaid, and so see these sorts of arrangements as a legitmate way to make up the difference.

    I think the logical solution is to pay a higher salary and remove the perks. This means everything is above board and there is no suspicion of rorting the system.

    If I had my way I would have half as many MP’s and pay them twice as much.

    • aj 14.1

      Ministers already get…$240k base salary? and all scoring $5k a year out of the tax cuts that most of us didn’t get? fuck what’s the need for a higher salary?

    • BLiP 14.2

      I’ve been saying the same thing myself – give the fuckers a pay rise equivalent to, say, the average level of expenses paid and do away with the expenses all together.

      I don’t agree, however, that the representation of the people in Parliament should be done away with simply on the grounds of expense.

  15. Adrian 15

    Notice the “I just want to keep my family together” script line. Of course when I hear this, my bullshit detector goes ” Who’s he shagging now?”

    • Armchair Critic 15.1

      “who’s he shagging now?”
      All of us. Have a look at Kiwiblog if you want to find out who is enjoying it.

  16. Ianmac 16

    Another possibility is the Bulk Funding option. (After all National is still keen to bulk fund schools.) Thus if an MP chose to live in a tent he can pocket the rest.

  17. Bill 17

    Seems that everyone has forgotten that these bastards are our servants.

    Which makes them wholly accountable to us. No excuses.

    But then again. It seems they’re not because we forgot who was the servant and who was the master and let them develop a sense of fealty to business masters instead.

    Anyway. I want my fucking 2c worth back. Wouldn’t it be nice to think we could demand our collective sum total and have it be put to some socially useful purpose?

    Oh. But that would be a tad too democratic I guess.

  18. randal 18

    what a man to hide behind his chidren.
    I’m not gunna do this and I’m not gunna do that.
    tell us all bill.
    do your children go to boarding school?
    and more to the point why do you need to take taxpayer money on the most dubious excuse.
    do you really need that extra $900 bucks a week bill?

  19. Graeme 19

    What would you call it when you tell the Electoral Commission and Ministerial Services that you live somewhere other than where you, your partner and your children actually live and work?

    1. Why would anyone tell the Electoral Commission where they live?

    2. Have you read s 72(6)(b) of the Electoral Act?:

    (6) The place where, for the purposes of this Act, a person resides shall not change by reason only of the fact that the person—

    (b) is absent from that place for any period because of his or her service or that of his or her spouse, civil union partner, or de facto partner as a member of Parliament; …

    even if such absence involves occasional or regular residence at another place or other places.

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