My Herald column is online here. It is written in quite a different style to my normal columns. An extract:
The Association of Consumers and Taxpayers was born in 1993 to Roger Douglas and Derek Quigley, in one of the nation’s first “queer” marriages. Prior to 1993, a National and Labour politician had never had a child together.
The new born infant was precocious, abbreviating its name to ACT before it even attended primary school. At three years old it got elected to Parliament despite having no current MPs there – something not achieved since 1978.
ACT’s parliamentary childhood was reasonably healthy, from 1996 to 2004. It reached 11 years of age looking forward to adolescence. However the pre-teen years saw the start of its trouble years.
Stepdad Richard Prebble moved out, and Father Roger disapproved of Rodney, the new stepdad. They started to argue in front of the kids. Even worse, suave Don stole away ACT’s first girlfriend, so at age 12 ACT got reduced to two MPs in 2005.
And the penultimate paragraph:
ACT’s friends are very sad at this prognosis. They recall the good times they had with ACT. They remember the good things ACT achieved. They don’t want to see ACT dead and buried, but they know that true friends don’t let mates suffer in agony. They know it is time to turn off the life support, and let ACT die.
This is not a call for anything to be done now. It is simply a recognition of reality.