Wednesday 12 June 2024

Thieving scum


Twenty-three parasites. (Back pockets not pictured.) [PIC: Dom Post]

Go on, when you read the headline you already had a fair idea about whom this would be.

Yes, readers: politicians.

A person with a smile painted on at the front and a bulging back pocket in behind.

Thieving scum.

A fair proportion of whom are taking your money to stay in their own Wellington home:

DOM POST: Twenty-three MPs are claiming an allowance [sic] of between $34,000 and $52,000 [per annum] to stay in their own Wellington homes, a perk that sees the taxpayer help politicians pay off their mortgages.

Nice. I'm sure to most of these entities that kind of money is the sort of chump change that fills up the back of the couch; but there's many a taxpayer who would that like that kind of money back to pay their own goddamned mortgage. 

Dom Post reports the scum includes "six National Party ministers, the Speaker Gerry Brownlee and deputy speaker Barbara Kuriger [who] claim the capped allowance to [supposedly] cover living costs in the city," poor lambs. "They then use it," says the Dom Post, "to pay rent on property they already own. Seven Labour MPs and two from ACT are also receiving up to $34,000 a year, the maximum paid to backbenchers." 

Yes folks, the entitle-itis is parliament-wide. The Dom Post names the roll call of thieving scum to be these:

Simon Court
Todd Stephenson
Mark Mitchell
Melissa Lee
Louise Upston
Stuart Smith
Barbara Kuriger
David MacLeod
Tim Costley
Paul Goldsmith
Judith Collins
Catherine Wedd
Andrew Bayley
Vanessa Weenink
Paul Garcia
Gerry Brownlee
Keiran McAnulty
Willie Jackson
Duncan Webb
Arena Williams
Jan Tinetti
Jenny Salesa
Deborah Russell
As the Post wryly notes, "Many of these MPs have extensive property portfolios."

Some of these parasites have form already, claiming large "expenses" and the accommodation allowance, including ACT's big-spending Todd Stephenson and National's Judith Collins and Louise Upston; and Labour's Willy Jackson, Jan Tinetti, Deborah Russell, Jenny Salesa, Arena Williams and Duncan Webb are all there again, treating the taxpayer as an ATM machine. (This attitude is truly everywhere, isn't it.)




MarkT said...

I struggle to get excited about this. If their main home is outside Wellington, they probably only own property here because they are travelling to Wellington regularly. There's costs in owning property - mortgage, rates, etc. Unless you rent it out for income, a house is a liability not an asset. So does it really make a difference whether the allowance they get goes towards the costs of hotel accommodation, versus the costs of owning and maintaining a home for the same purpose?

Peter Cresswell said...

@Mark: I agree that the details are unimportant, and relatively trivial in the scheme of things. Except for ne thing: that it betrays the true character of each and every one of them. Or the lack thereof.

MarkT said...

PC - I'm not arguing it's an insignificant amount of money, I'm questioning if it's as bad as you think it is (morally). If in the course of a job you have to travel, and it's reasonable to get reimbursed for living costs of living away from your main home, does it make a difference (morally) if it gets spent on a hotel, or on paying off the mortgage or on a secondary home you've bought to accommodate yourself?