Derogatory, offensive, pathetic, nasty, intimidatory, threatening, gutless and spineless.
Whoa! Councillor John Morrison is angry. And why? He’s telling the DomPost what he thinks of being sent a package pointing out that the costs of Wellington’s next big roading projects would be far greater than any economic benefits.
Not that he has anything to say about the message. It’s the messenger that has annoyed him. He’s angry because the package was sent by a group called the Economic Illiteracy Support Group. And it contained a children’s numeracy instruction book.
Councillor Jo Coughlan also received a package. She seems a little less certain about whether she should ignore the financial issues. “Probably not worth taking any notice of,” she says. Has the message registered with her, even slightly?
Last month, Wellington.Scoop published a media release from the Economic Illiteracy Support Group. It showed a commendable amount of good humour at the same time as it advanced its economic arguments against the Wellington roading plans.
And it was kind to the nine councillors (including Councillor Morrison) who’ve been defending plans for new roads:
“It’s apparent that these councillors need our support and advice rather than the criticism they have been receiving in some sections of the media. As should be obvious to all concerned, the roading projects they’re promoting are a complete money-waster and will destroy hundreds of millions of dollars of economic value for the region. However that’s not the important issue right now.
“The nine councillors are suffering from an easily-identifiable but debilitating condition – economic illiteracy. The most basic numeracy skills would have demonstrated that spending a dollar and only getting back 40 cents – as these roading projects do – was a dumb idea. So it’s clear that these councillors need every assistance in learning what a benefit/cost ratio is, what that little minus sign in the benefits column actually means, and how they can avoid looking like idiots in the media.”
The Support Group may be anonymous, but it has its own website, where it shows an admirable level of sardonic humour, such as has escaped the angry Councillor Morrison. And this morning, the website says: “The one thing that he didn’t say was that we were wrong.”
TOP: This book is one of the favourites of the Economic Illiteracy Support Group. It may or may not have been in the package which has so annoyed Councillor Morrison.
There’s no cure for congestion