Vacuous. That's the word that occurred to me as I listened to the retiring Katherine Rich MP tell Catherine Ryan why she's leaving parliament. "It's all about the choooldren," she all but dribbled.
But if it's all about her choooldren, wouldn't she want to stay on and be education minister to sort out the bloody system in which her brats are going to be chewed up and processed? Does she know she'd be unable to do that job; or doesn't the state of their home for fifteen years bother her at all?
And does anyone really think she won't be taking up a new job which will have equal pressures to this one, which will keep her from her children about as much as the one she was going to have ?
Frankly, I've never had time for the woman. She's a politician without a point. An MP with nothingto say. Listening to her tell Ryan why she's leaving reminded me how much of how little she really stands for, and how few reasons she ever had for being there in the first place. Cactus Kate sums up the most telling point against her:
I am a firm believer that it is important how your enemies see you when you are no longer in competition with them. If they say nothing then it is a good sign, if they continue to criticize you then it is a great sign. But run out plaudits about how great you are and what a loss you will be, then chances are your time has not been well spent.
Katherine Rich is no exception.
As Cactus say, she's not rich pickings, and
I am not buying the “spend more time with children” line.
She should have just announced she didn’t want to be an MP anymore.
I would have understood and wished her the best, because not many sane people want to be an MP either.
Which is true -- which is why if you're sane and an MP you need to have a purpose. To her credit the pursuit of power isn't enough, but without a purpose the likes of Katherine Rich are just vacuous empty vessels.
No wonder her enemies like her. If David Cunliffe is the Minister of Useless Journeys, then Rich would probably have been Minister of No Journeys at All.
UPDATE: David Slack offers another plausible position:
Perhaps she was hoping to be a part of a Velvet Revolution and she has dejectedly concluded that it's not worth hanging around for something as slight as a Beige Makeover.