Barrack Obama

I’m happy that John Key is feeling he’s like NZ’s Barrack Obama.

I was wishing we had one of those. I feel quite a lot like Barrack Obama myself. Except I’m not black. And I’m a woman. I don’t know anything about politics either… which makes me think that perhaps I must be more like John Key. It’s fun being other people my daughter once spent a whole summer entitled ‘XaXa Pocohontas’. Xa Xa didn’t have to listen to me, or eat her dinner which meant before long she had to be exorcised – there was a certain amount of convenience to be had by being someone else and we all tired of it before she did. I wonder what the fringe benefits of being an Antipodean version of someone else would be? The sense that you’re part of the real ‘world’ and not some second rate Oceanic version? I wonder who Helen would like to be? She’s been looking more like Winston (Churchill that is) in the last year of the second World War lately although she wears pants better than he did but I’d like to see her with a cigar and bowler hat.

I get quite spooked watching Parliament sometimes, I swear that Rodney Hide is channelling the Ompaloompahs and Winston’s Spirit Guide is the Cheshire Cat. Winnie must be feeling like he’s slipped down that rabbit hole over the last few weeks – all those evil geniis have managed to slip out of the wine box and somewhere in the shadows are goading their minions to go for Winston’s throat. National have been baying for his blood – I guess the merchant bankers in big boy pants whom he never managed to actually get but had the audacity to point the finger at, haven’t forgotten. For a party who seem happy to swallow rotten fish to get where they want to go, it has to be pretty bad for them to publicly state that they will never ever pinky promise get into bed with Winston. As a voter I’m feeling like the virgin bride in an arranged marriage. As Lockwood smiles lovingly at me through gritted teeth I see him eyeing up the family chattels and heirlooms and keeping a mental tally. At this point in the election nuptial arrangements I’m not sure if I’m an asset or a liability once I’ve signed up till death or the next election do us part. I’m scanning the horizon for an open window and a saddled up horse waiting outside.

The sad thing is, as evasive and annoying as Winnie can be with the media I can’t see what the problem is. Really. Now if I were a bank account and wanted to be something else – what would I choose to be? I know. A trust! I’d give myself a new name – like Spencer or Waimate and readily accept any libations offered. Isn’t that what all political parties do? What everyone who can afford to does? Here’s a riddle that the Cheshire Cat might ask; “When is my money not my money?” “When in it’s in a trust.” Why have we all suddenly got so shocked?

I still remember standing in the Victoria Quadrant over 20 years ago watching Lockwood Smith looking like a supercilious Tuatara, sign a written declaration stating that if user pays was introduced into the Universities, he would resign. I believed him. The next year half of my mates left uni because they couldn’t afford the user pays fees and didn’t trust the government loan system.

The last time I checked, Lockwood was still knocking around parliament. When he wasn’t in Dargaville that is, scratching his Murray Bulls.

Standing for something and doing something entirely different is all just part of the job description. Being a New Zealand version of someone else is just taking it to that next level.

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