When a polly makes you smile…

Well, it was a long time coming but John Key finally put a smile on my face. Okay, I’m prejudiced but I still think he was by far New Zealand’s most mediocre leader. So why was he so popular? Was he popular? Television news certainly thought so; the PMs smiling face was on the screen daily whether the events he attended were newsworthy or not. Television, and the media generally, loved him.

On the day of his resignation did I hear or read the word ‘great’ attributed to him? Either this is nonsense or I’m losing it. I asked a fair dinkum Kiwi bloke if Key really was popular. “Yeah, definitely,” But why? I asked. Or perhaps I pleaded. “ ‘Cos he’s a typical Kiwi joker,” he said. Really?

Anyway, goodbye to Mr Key and hello Mr English. I’m not keen on his political views either but I like Bill English, so that’s a good start. Pardon me for being so out of touch but I think he’s a more accurate reflection of the typical Kiwi joker. And boring’s okay, Bill, just be genuine and you’ll do me.

And now for the next election: After the tedium of the American Primaries and the obsessive media attention devoted to Brexit I’ll probably stay in bed. But hello, someone’s at the bedroom door shouting wakey- wakey and it sounds like Gareth Morgan. Whew! Saved in the nick of time.

Maybe he can inject some excitement into my surly expectations. He’ll be ridiculed for his ideas of course, particularly the one about sharing; that’s really old-fashioned. But tenacity is merely one of his qualities and you never know, he could liven up what MMP promised but never quite delivered?

In the event that Gareth is trampled along with his ideas here’s a suggestion for perking up election year: Parties who achieve the 5% threshold put forward their most important policy for a referendum vote, which would present voters with about seven or eight to choose from. The elected government is charged with implementing the most popular policy before any other business. Just in case there’s no mad scramble for this suggestion, Good luck Gareth

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Chris Horan

Chris is a former social worker, probation officer and Family Court counsellor, living in Hawea in the South Island.