An amusing and at times apt speech by Peter Dunne to his electorate AGM. Some extracts:
One reason I am very confident National will lead the next government is that Labour, at this point in the political cycle, is not a viable, functioning alternative.
Actually, I am being polite here.
Events of recent times bring the term ‘cot case’ to mind.
With no new faces on their front bench, they are essentially going into this election with the re-heated caucus that New Zealanders threw out three years ago, and as one would expect, they seem bereft of new ideas.
It is not really possible to generate new ideas when you have yet to accept that your old ideas have been rejected.
All too true.
When I first turned my head to this speech, Rodney Hide was still leader of ACT and Osama bin Laden was still in ensconced in his Pakistani fortress.
They have both since met merciless fates, one at the hands of the US Navy Seals, and the other at the hands of a force considerably more scary.
One is now a bloodied corpse; the other at the bottom of the sea.
There is another thing that Middle New Zealand does not want.
And I am going to speak his name: Winston Peters.
His obfuscations, half-truths, dancing on the head of a pin and, ultimately, his destructiveness, finally caught up with him in 2008.
My only concern about Winston Peters in 2011 is a very simple one: that people will have short memories.
Actually, he relies on that.
He counts on it.
One can only hope that his recently auctioned ‘No’ sign goes on a national tour later this year, stopping in every town hall and Grey Power meeting five minutes after Winston Peters darkens its doorstep.
It may not be the original, but you can bet NO signs will be appearing most places Winston does.
People need reminding in one simple word of the destructiveness and duplicity that Winston brought to New Zealand politics.
There is no more apt reminder of why New Zealanders should not have Winston Peters back – ever – than that sign.
That sign said it all, but in a way that he never intended. It should be his political epitaph. ‘No.’
I salute John Key for ruling him out yet again as a potential coalition partner.
It was bold and it was principled, just as it was in 2008.
Running a country is hard enough; you need to do it with people whose word today means what it meant yesterday, and will mean the same tomorrow.
The wink, the grin and a good deal of opportunistic fact-free scare-mongering should never again be enough for Winston Peters to re-enter a House that has been more honourable for his absence.