EVERYTHING from the eternally pessimistic Private Fraser, the fashion crime of socks with sandals, sad-faced selfies, Connect Four and pothole inspector Diver Dave's employment prospects were argued over as the annual budget bunfight took place at Fife House last week.

During the worst cost of living crisis in memory, asking Fifers to pay more in council tax was always going to be a hard sell and councillors ramped up the hyperbole and the insults to make their points as they discussed what you could buy for 50p.

It was still panto season – the 'oh yes it is a coalition, oh no it isn't a coalition' got a few airings – and we were told even the "dugs in the street" and the ducks know that Labour's minority administration is really a coalition.

Quacking banter.

It was game on when Tory Gavin Ellis said he didn't believe the SNP "could set up a competent game of Connect Four let alone deliver a budget" while Labour's Jan Wincott jumped in with a two-footed challenge, stating the opposition's proposals "have no substance and as much style as wearing socks with sandals".

John Beare was off to the movies to warn of a "nightmare on North Street" if Labour's proposals were passed while opposition leader David Alexander dug up an old TV favourite when he suggested Private Fraser from Dad's Army had come up with Labour's doom-laden prophecies of job losses and cuts to services.

Labour's Tom Adams said they only wanted to get rid of one post and explained: "And that job is Diver Dave, the scuba diver, the guy who gangs to the bottom of the pothole to inspect it and check the depth of the pothole before it gets filled in.

"Under oor administration that's going to be done. Under the SNP it looks like Diver Dave is going to be in a job for the foreseeable future."

And we certainly plumbed the depths from there.

The Conservatives complained that the SNP weren't talking to them, the SNP said they didn't want to talk to them. Don't expect a knock on the door, they were informed.

But Tory leader Kathleen Leslie complained the "obsessed" SNP had made three "personal" comments about her, appealing to the Provost for a yellow card.

The SNP weren't for apologising either, saying "hell would freeze over" before they spoke to a group led by someone who had insulted the First Minister some years back.

There was fury when the SNP were described as "cult-like" while Tory Dave Dempsey, after telling us about his morning muesli, caused sharp intakes of breath when he talked of a "parallel universe" where there were three genders: man, woman and rapists.

He also helpfully informed the chamber that "Dunfermline is not a faraway place of which we know little".

There was always going to be a rise in the council tax, three or five per cent, but in the end it was spending on roads that drove the Lib Dems and Tories into supporting the higher hike.

The SNP's Derek Glen made the odd observation that this was "throwing money into a hole in the ground", adding: "Maybe it's just a sop to gain support from anyone whose idea of political activism largely consists of taking sad-faced selfies while pointing at potholes."

Cllr Dempsey said that was the whole point, tackling those moon-like craters on our streets was the number one complaint from the public and, indeed what the SNP proposed to 'throw' money at too.

Except not as much.

Altany Craik said there would be no jam tomorrow with the SNP, he wasn't blaming them for supermarket shortages, more to do with storing up financial problems and cuts for the future.

But he was furious when the SNP's Auxi Barrera wondered out loud if he had ever suffered hardship.

Oh yes he had and she should be "ashamed" for asking.