Wellington is home to more public servants than at any time since at least 2000 – and the capital has the greatest share of the bureaucracy since National took office in 2008.
Although National pledged and then made efforts to reduce “core” public servants in favour of “frontline” workers, the number of fulltime public servants based in Wellington rose by more than 900 in the year to June 30, 2013, to 18,493.
It is the largest number since at least 2000, and probably since major state service reforms of the 1980s.
Figures from the State Services Commission show that the number of public servants grew by 1155 to 44,500 in the year to June 30, with the vast majority of new positions in Wellington.
Now I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Modern states are complicated and you need a lot of people to run them properly. But it is kind of surprising since National spent their entire time in opposition screaming and clawing at their eyes about the number of public servants, and dour, prudent Bill English spent his last six years in government with a serious expression on his face explaining that he was being sensible and getting tough and cracking down on the public service who needed to tighten their belts and do more with less and actually that was all just bullshit too.
The other point I’d add to my previous post is that it kind of surprised me to learn that National had borrowed $50 billion. I knew it was a lot but didn’t know the exact number. And I’m pretty sure that if a Labour government had borrowed $50 billion dollars I’d have known all about it, because Key and English would have been on TV every night for the past four months bellowing about Labour destroying our economy and dooming generations of unborn kiwi children to slavery by borrowing $50 billion dollars, while the Herald and NBR would all be publishing their print editions in red ink to symbolise Labour’s irresponsible debt and the life-blood of the country that they’d gutted with their insane borrowing. Instead its just cicadas chirping and the only mention of the figure that I’ve seen was a Green MP’s twitter feed.