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Charitable giving-the generosity of Winston, with our money, knows no bounds

18/06/2008

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Scoopit!

From the Dominion Post:-

Cystic Fibrosis has returned a $10,000 donation made by NZ First, saying it is unclear if the party “has any right” to make a charitable donation on money wrongly spent at the last election.

The charity, one of nine understood to have received a share of the $158,000 owed by the Winston Peters-led party, announced its rejection of the money last night.

Cystic Fibrosis Association chief executive Kate Russell said the board and management, “mindful of public opinion surrounding the ‘donation’ of this money”, had decided to return it.

The board and management deserve an upsurge in support as a result of this decision.

It remains to be seen whether the other charities in receipt of ‘donations’ take similar action.

It is clear what Tom Scott thinks of Winston’s donations policy:-

from his cartoon in today’s Dominion Post.

The NZ Herald carried an NZPA story with a similar content:-

Critics say NZ First doesn’t have the right to give away taxpayer money to charity and it should be repaid to the service.

Too right they do not have any right to do this.

Fellow bloggers Keeping Stock, Homepaddock , Queen Bee at The Hive, and Kiwblog have commented recently on this issue, as have others. Some like Adam have commented several times on Winston and his insistence on frustrating the Auditor General and what would seem to be public sentiment on this issue.

This was exemplified yet again with his performance on TVNZ’s Agenda programme on Sunday.

Here is an extract from the transcript of Agenda, a TVNZ programme, on Sunday 15 June 2008 when Guyon Espiner interviewed Winston Peters:

GUYON Sure, what’s happened to the money now?
WINSTON … a former National Party at point he rejected it and I was very sad about that for the young children of this country, what’s happened now is that it’s been paid out to nine charitable donations all of them very worthy and that’s where the matter ends, we have not kept one cent. I want to say one thing, I was never gonna have my staff accused of theft when they were approved for every item of expenditure by Parliamentary Services.
GUYON Okay will the public get to know who those charities are?
WINSTON Look I wrote to the Speaker with the full list and the letters of introduction to those charities, if the Speaker wants you to find out that’s fine but I do not think that they should become the victims of snooping prying media interest.

First off Winston again claimed the Starship would have kept the money had not the Chairman said no.

Then note the introduction of a variant on the Goebbels technique of the ‘big lie’, namely the suggestion that WInston’s staff were going to be accused of theft, plus the now obligatory and ongoing obfuscatory element of this was approved by Parliamentary Services, as if that made it all OK.

Yet as everyone knows Parliamentary Services ‘approved’ the pledge card payments also. Merely ‘approving’ something by paying the bill does not of itself render the transaction morally and ethically appropriate.

Then he says the Speaker knows who the charities are, so contact her. Well apparently the Speaker thinks it is up to NZ First and/or the charities to tell us.

Ridiculous.

But the real sting in this exchange is the last phrase

I do not think that they should become the victims of snooping prying media interest

Winston Peters, a paid servant of the Crown, an MP, a Minister – does not think that the media have any right to make such inquiries.

This is yet another example of what Tracy Watkins wrote about in her article on Cullen and Peters on Monday – on which Adam commented here.

Peters yet again demonstrates not only arrogance, but total contempt for the media and indirectly for the public, as according to him they should only ever know what he wants them to know.

Appalling and outrageous.

Scoopit!

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  1. Another NZ First Donation Goes Back « Homepaddock

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