Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Every sow's ear has a silver lining

Everyone agrees on the need to share the cost of rebuilding Christchurch fairly across all New Zealanders. According to the Finance Minnyster, the way to ensure this is to privatise public assets while cutting government assistance for the poor and the "Working for Families" tax-break for non-wealthy families.

Over at at Dim-Post, Danylmc hazards a generalisation:
Most of the suggestions I’ve seen from various politicians and pundits on how to deal with the aftermath of the earthquake are things that those individuals desperately wanted to see happen before the quake. I think Fran O’Sullivan was the first out of the gate, suggesting that Len Brown cancel all of his proposed infrastructure projects for Auckland. The Greens want to increase taxes for the rich, English wants to bring back interest on students loans, and so on.
Perhaps John Boscawen of the ACT Party is just more honest than the rest about the whole shock-doctrine business of seizing the chance to push one's message inherent in any tragedy:
The fact is that this is an opportunity that we cannot afford to miss.
Boscawen is the kind of guy who would react to the news that you have cancer with a slap on the back and congratulations that you've received this great opportunity to adopt a quack diet he's being urging you to try.

His speech is also noteworthy for some weird ranting about billions of dollars-worth of high-grade coal that the voices have told him about, buried somewhere in the South Island: His vision of prosperity for New Zealand involves turning productive farmland into strip-mines in order to send coals to Newcastle lignite to China.

Ladies and gentlemen, this man is the current deputy-leader-until-the-next-one-comes-along of the ACT party, which attracts something like 3.7% of support from voters. He can afford to be that stonkingly insulting to everyone in Christchurch because none of that 3.7% comes from there (it mainly comes from socially-inadequate nimrods who pride themselves on being arseholes and have come to terms with the inevitable by telling themselves that if everyone hates them it's because of their habit of bravely stating unpopular truths). He can afford to be that stupid because ACT has 5 seats in parliament and an influential position as support party for the minority National government -- also as a convenient excuse for National politicians to bring in unpopular hard-right policies while blaming each one on an unavoidable concession to ACT.

UPDATE: The ACT party collectively serves as a case-study in crank magnetism... like whiskies and breasts, it's hard to stop after just one lunatic belief. Muriel Newman, for instance, who was deputy-leader-last-but-one, is firmly invested in space-case counter-factual archaeology. The upshot is that ACT politicians can stand up and spout anything that they've heard from the leprechauns in their trousers without fear of ridicule from the media, because "ACT speaker disconnects from real world" is not exactly news.

10 comments:

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

...because none of that 3.7% comes from there (it mainly comes from socially-inadequate nimrods who pride themselves on being arseholes and have come to terms with the inevitable by telling themselves that if everyone hates them it's because of their habit of bravely stating unpopular truths).

That's about 30% of the voters here. Combined with plutocrat money plus another 15 percent of the voters who are just ignorant and/or have remarkably short attention spans, and it's enough to steal most elections.
~

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Wow, I thought the U.S. was the only place in which these gobshites held sway.

I propse that the best way to deal with "Libertarians" is to offer each one a kilogram of gold, a suitcase full of guns, and a one-way ticket to Tuvalu (because Al Gore is fat), where they can set up a Randian paradise.

Another Kiwi said...

Somalia, BBBB. Untrammelled by a government

vacuumslayer said...

Wow, I thought the U.S. was the only place in which these gobshites held sway.

I was gonna say...

Smut Clyde said...

A decade or so ago, when ACT stalwart Richard Prebble was still a MP, he came out in opposition to New Zealand accepting refugees from Somalia. Not because he's a racist shitweasel, or to appease the racist shitweasels who comprise his constituency; it was (he explained) because Somalians are all primitive pastoral farmers who would not fit well into the NZ economy.

Sadly, not making this up.

merc said...

They never win.

Michael said...

Oh dear. That IS a bit shameful, isn't it?

However, perhaps instead of trying to make these victims of low cranial capacity and paranoid fear and hatred understand the world as it truly is, and get them to understand that merely because someone will give you shiny trinkets for it that is not a compelling reason to dig it out of the ground and set fire to it, our friend and mentor in the ways of the damaged and deceitful, one Mr. Clyde might perhaps be better served by providing the background and long lost history of those leprechauns he mentioned. You know, the ones in the trousers?

Because most people I've spoken to seem to be rather skeptical of the small, celtic-accented humanoids who have taken up residence in my pants, where it's one party after another, I daresay..

tigris said...

PICTURES!

Substance McGravitas said...

There is something wonderfully just-so about the presence of rats being an indicator of the presence of humans.

TruculentandUnreliable said...

If I could go back in time, I would murder Milton Friedman's parents. Before he was born, I mean.

...too soon?