You'll be pleased to know the Prime Minister doesn’t have to be in Auckland to understand the lockdown
Kudos to Barry Soper for being one of the last remaining press gallery operators who actually knows how to ask a proper question and insist on following it up. If you saw it yesterday, the Prime Minister has lost the ability to handle it.
She's so used to the soft soap acquiescence of the rest of the gallery who are either asleep, spineless or apparatchiks. She was well and truly taken aback when old father-to-be Soper rocks up with a few nerve inducing questions around why she hadn't been to her hometown in months. And why she hadn't visited the very electorate that sent her to Parliament to represent them.
Most embarrassingly of all, a couple of questions on just how is it she has time to go to Europe when she doesn’t have time to go to Auckland. Europe isn't official yet, and that's because they have yet again been caught out, and by being embarrassed by being caught out, they don’t know what to say.
She did offer the issue of quarantine. Bit hard to go to Auckland when she would need to isolate. But clearly not so hard to go to Europe and, one would assume, self-isolate under their new business plan trial which involves an embarrassingly infinitesimal number of spots.
To be clear, I'm not against the Prime Minister leaving the country to mix with the world, mainly because I'm not against any of us leaving the country to mix with the world. But that’s the rub, we can't leave because we can't come back, and we can't come back because we are all going to die.
We can't leave Auckland, far less New Zealand, unless you are the Prime Minister. She no longer needs to be a local MP because she gets all there is to get, by being hundreds of kilometres away. It’s a special, magic power.
If you voted for this, I hope it's giving you pause for thought. This is Helen Clark 2005 through 2008, except it's gone to Jacinda Ardern's head at lightning speed. She's lost touch in record time. Clark lost the country in the third term, Ardern has lost it in her second.
The reason she went all pursed lipped at Barry is because they know we are onto it, they know they are in trouble, and they know this looks like a sick joke.
But the only trick they have left is to bully their way through it, ignore the tough questions, and hope the rest of the media remains enamoured enough to make the ride smooth enough to get out the other side.
Mike Hosking is a New Zealand television and radio broadcaster. He currently hosts The Mike Hosking Breakfast show on NewstalkZB on weekday mornings.
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