Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Thoughts on elections...

The election campaign trundles along. There have been some “interesting” bits. There have been a lot of uninteresting bits. Include in the latter the attempts to get together an entertainment programme for tv (whichever channel) with the leaders of each of the represented parties “debating” various issues. RadioNZ has a winner with Kim Hill conducting public debates – at least it might be if you can get past the prepared rhetoric and party buzz-lines.

The interesting bits are led by two.

The first is Auntie Helen’s pamphlet. Watch for this one to get big in the next few days. RadioNZ had Shane Jones (L) and Gerry (Can) Brownlee (N) on Morning Report today. Interesting discussion. It seems that Jim (Iron Man) Anderton had this fantastic idea of putting out a booklet to his electorate “grey brigade”. All manner of helpful tips about how to cross the road, how to lock your door properly, that kind of thing. Someone in PartLy HQ got a hold of it and has a similar one printed for every sitting member of the present government. Labour, that is. From the Parliamentary Services vote. Jones said that his had been distributed “by party helpers and volunteers”. Question, very rightly, is “Is this electioneering material or not?”

Yes, that one is likely to get interesting.

The most interesting is illustrated by yesterday afternoon's(RadioNZ and Checkpoint this time) interview of the JonKey. “My old mate” Morrie (Minor) Williamson has opened his mouth once more and uttered the “T” word. That little faux is not the interesting bit. What is becoming increasingly apparent is that (if the polls are right) our next government is in fact going to be a dictatorship.

“Say what?!!?”

Yep, I will hang my hat on this one. Listening to the JonKey dealing with the fallout from Morrie (Minor) Williamson’s banana-skin tongue on my way home through the (un-tolled) traffic last night, he came up with the statement that “nothing will happen without my signature on the bottom of it.” He repeated it in the form “Nothing will come out from Cabinet until I am satisfied with it, and sign off on it.” I don’t know that anyone else has picked up on this as yet, but if it is true then he is going to be a mightily busy man over the next three years. After all, there will (on the strength of that statement) be no individual ministerial responsibility. Nothing is going to happen unless signed off by “the man”.

Think for a moment about how this election has progressed to date. The only voice heard with surety is the JonKey. Even Honest Bill English is given a list of catches to pop to the media, probably even the sequence. You can hear the echo of the JonKey’s voice. But that is a small and (becoming endearing) exception. Nothing, but nothing, leaves the Nats without the man, the JonKey’s, approval. He is the only man permitted to say anything.

Mind you, add the likes of Dr Lockwood Mastermind Smith to the mix and he does have a real problem to deal with.

Hello Dictatorship!!!

"Sideswipe" is a back page commentary of little bits and pieces...
The JonKey on the left... On the right?

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