Wednesday, 22 March 2006

Sticks and stones and dirt

Russell Brown's piece on David Parker contains a couple of dubious references to how throwing stones might not be in the interests of some particular glasshouse residents, comments that uncomfortably echo Michael Cullen's less-than-veiled threats last week to release his 'dirt file'. Says Russell:
But I hope that all National and Act members, especially those who aspire to be Cabinet ministers one day, have their own papers in perfect order... And as he proclaims from the moral high ground, Rodney Hide might do well to remember his own links, and those of his Act colleague Owen Jennings with dubious financial schemes - which did members of the public a lot more injury than Parker ever did.
Now as you know I hardly carry a brief for the ACT party, but Russell's comments made me reflect back to that particular story about Owen Jennings, and how easy it is to make something from nothing. What Owen had done in lending out his office to a constituent to sell what appeared to be a complicated pyramid scheme was perhaps foolish, but was very likely no more than an attempt to be helpful. I say that because Owen lent out his office just as readily (without asking details) to help out Adrian Chisholm and I when we were down in Wellington putting together Adrian's 'Sludgegate' case, a generous gesture that was much appreciated, even though neither of us could have been called either constituents or ACT supporters.

The point being that lending out his office would not necessarily have implied any endorsement or even knowledge of what was being done there. Foolish it might have been, but intended only to be helpful -- and hardly a crime. And further, and perhaps this is worth reflecting on, does all this dirt flying across the net actually take everyone's eyes off the main game in which New Zealanders continue to be done over by meddling arseholes in government clothing?

Having said that however, this line towards the end of Russell's piece on Jennings also caught my eye:
With all this excitement, it's been easy to forget that the Government's own moral compass has also been spinning like a Mickey Mouse watch on acid...
I must confess, I did have to check the date of his piece in order to ascertain exactly which Government Russell was talking about. Can you guess? Can you tell?

LINKS: Nats pull back as Labour digs dirt - Dominion Post
Gone by lunchtime - Russell Brown, Hard News
Good day mediaphiles... Russell Brown, Hard News, 2 May 1998
Bureaucratic excrement - Free Radical

TAGS: Politics-NZ, Politics-ACT

1 comment:

  1. PC:

    Silly boy! Don't you remember that Cullen, Mallard etc. spent the 90's holding high-minded policy seminars over tea and crumpets, while conservatives and libertarians were ritually slaughtering puppies and kicking old ladies?


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