Dunne? Dunne who? Peter Dunne?
Oh, that Peter Dunne, a long-standing person of interest to the Riddled Think-tank for being a politician of principle. At least twice as many principles as any other politician, to ensure that he has one to fit all possible decisions.
Though not yet resigning from Parliament, Dunne has resigned from Cabinet, and the prospect of his disappearance from the scene has sent a shiver around the NZ political-journalistic establishment, looking for a spine to run down . They have invested a great deal of effort in talking up his decency, and honesty, and moderation. Moreover, they are not the most boring people in NZ politics for as long as Dunne remains.
Yes, you have read that correctly. We are to believe that Dunne takes each issue on his own merits, because he can simultaneously be in the pay of the alcohol and tobacco lobbies AND YET be doing everything he can to criminalise and stamp out the alternatives to alcohol. Such non-doctrinaire integrity!
The scandal that brought Dunne to this point is sordid and squalid and hardly worth summarising. But in the wake of the dotcom debacle, the Gubblement commissioned the Kitteridge Report into what had gone so badly kattywumpus at the GCSB that left them engaging in unlawful surveillance of Mr dotcom [of the Schleswig-Holstein Dotcoms] at the behest of the police; someone leaked it to a journalist; and that someone looks to be Dunne. No-one has any real idea why. It is not a good look for someone trusted with high secrets, a member of the Security and Intelligence Committee. Perhaps it was an attempt to ingratiate himself with the Pry Minister, carried out in the belief that the Report was meant to be leaked, in accordance with long-standing custom.
It does not help that the special remuneration he receives in Parliament as the "leader of a Party" appears to have been obtained under false pretenses, as he does not currently have a party to lead, unless you count an impromptu gathering of inebriated staff members in his office, several of them wearing lampshades.
But we should not overlook the real victim here... the journamalist to whom the Report was leaked. She was honestly under the impression that she was fulfilling her duties as a stenographer to power, providing a conduit for Minnysters to exploit their access to information and undercut their opponents in a deniable way; but now it seems that it was not an officially sanctioned leak, and she was used by one side in an internal schism. Who knows how this will impact her career?!