Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Colin Craig Mocks Himself

 The newly formed Conservative Party in New Zealand has been on a bit of a roll recently, as it is has become quite a hit with many older Kiwis and those with a Christian religious persuasion. Its leader, Colin Craig, seemed to be quite a youthful, decent and clean cut sort of chap who was prepared to put his money where his mouth is by initially funding his party into being a real contender in the next election.

Alas, Mr Craig has succumbed to one of the oldest political vices...  hubris! When a rather obscure satirist posted an obvious parody about The Conservative Party and its leader on a website called "The Civilian", Mr Craig reacted by fuming into one of Auckland's top law firms and got them to write threatening letters to demand a withdrawal of the article and an apology.

What he got of course was the opposite of his intentions, which was probably to defend his reputation and snuff out libelous comment. For all his costly efforts, he apparently did at least get a sort tongue in cheek apology, but the offending article is still there to be viewed (getting thousands of new readers) and Colin Craig has revealed himself to be a rather silly man and incredibly politically naive.

He has at least wised up to his mistake by quickly withdrawing threats of court action.  I am sure his doting followers will forgive him and many might still be outraged too, but he will have to be more careful in the future if he wants to one day warm a plush leather seat in Parliament. Kiwi's generally do not admire thin skinned bullies because we know, after years of Muldoon, that is how tin pot tyrants begin their careers.

Groser's Ambitions Fade

Poor old Tim Groser has just seen his political aspiration to be the top dog at the World Trade Organization slip just beyond his grasp and he will have to retire now with a fairly modest track record as a diplomat and politician.

I have never been a fan of his. He seemed to me to be far too smarmy and devoid of any real effective solutions to the current dire economic situation facing New Zealand. There must be thousands of his sort cruising around diplomatic circles or collecting fat fees on boards of directors in companies. They appear to know what they are doing, but seem more adept at working the system than changing the world.

Mind you, I must admit he did look the part when he took on roles that gave him exposure to the media. Perhaps he did do well and I never heard of it - I hope this was so. Anyway, it is time for him to bow out gracefully and open the door for others to tackle trading and political situations that affect us all. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Power Politics


What more can I say. Here we go again, selling State Assets to pay for the groceries. The Opposition, in a rare show of unity, have helped turn the sale process of the State owned energy company Mighty River Power into a shambles. Not a good start I would think for the budding career of Energy Minister Simon Bridges and another dent in the public image of Prime Minister John Key.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Old Cronies

Grant Robertson seems to leading the Labour charge against John Key in Parliament lately. His leader does not appear to like making the most of Key's unusually inept fumbling around explaining how he appointed Grant Fletcher to head the troubled  Government Communication Securities Bureau (GCSB) -  which is becoming an embarrassing parody of a secret service agency.

David Shearer is mouthing his disapproval, but to my ear, unconvincingly. He just lacks the killer instinct no matter how much John Key lowers his guard. No doubt, he knows that Key  probably the legal right to appoint whom he damn well likes and  in the eyes of the Public, there is not much mileage in this one.

So why is Grant Robertson hammering away more than his leader? Well, his body language appears to me to betray leadership aspirations beyond his suitability, which is sadly going to keep Labour low in the polls.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Carter's Capers

David Carter is quite obviously a reluctant Mr Speaker at Parliament and right from the start appeared very uncomfortable in his new job. This is in stark contrast to Lockward Smith, the previous Speaker, who loved the role and alas has taken off to be the new High Commissioner in London.

What has surprised me about Carter's Speaker style has been his obsequious attitude to John Key - who now looks terribly smug in the House. Not surprising I suppose, with David Shearer spluttering away ineffectively and the rest of the Opposition muted by Carter before they get into their stride.