MHR is tock of the town, ticks off some


Joondalup Weekender - - Opinion - Mark Don­ald­son

THE Rolex watch of Moore MHR Ian Good­e­nough, a for­mer Wan­neroo coun­cil­lor, caused a stir among me­dia and his Fed­eral political op­po­nents last week, but there were also those who won­dered what the fuss was about.

The fas­ci­na­tion stemmed from a state­ment he made about his high-end time­piece, un­usu­ally writ­ten in third per­son, to a jour­nal­ist who asked him of its ori­gins.

Mr Good­e­nough’s name and his ex­pen­sive taste in jew­ellery came up in Par­lia­ment af­ter it was re­vealed he had helped fel­low Lib­eral MP Ian Mac­far­lane con­firm a Rolex, which Mr Mac­far­lane thought was fake, was in fact gen­uine.

A jour­nal­ist then asked Mr Good­e­nough about his own Rolex, to which he re­sponded with the now much-pub­li­cised state­ment, of how he bought it to re­mind him of what hard work could earn him. An ex­cerpt went as fol­lows: “Ian de­cided to pur­chase a Rolex af­ter learn­ing of the brand’s his­tory and com­mit­ment to achiev­ing the best time piece prod­uct pos­si­ble,” it said.

“Ian has worn his Rolex ev­ery day since its pur­chase to re­mind him­self of the hard work it took to ob­tain it.”

Mr Good­e­nough clar­i­fied the state­ment had only been in­tended for the jour­nal­ist and not for gen­eral re­lease be­cause there would be “no value in in­ten­tion­ally rais­ing the pro­file like that”.

But the back­bencher learnt how quickly so­cial me­dia can make a politi­cian the butt of on­line satire – and ill-con­sid­ered vit­riol – when the jour­nal­ist, seem­ingly baf­fled by the third-per­son style in which the re­sponse was writ­ten, shared it on Twit­ter.

Mr Good­e­nough ad­mit­ted he was sur­prised by the talk it had gen­er­ated, but said he took it all in good fun.

“It lights up the imag­i­na­tion… it gen­er­ated a bit of a storm, which I’ve not been used to,” he said.

Re­spond­ing to a query about the ap­pro­pri­ate­ness of a politi­cian pro­mot­ing a com­mer­cial brand, he did not see it as an is­sue be­cause it was not for fi­nan­cial gain.

“That would have been im­proper,” he said.

WA fed­eral La­bor MP Alan­nah MacTier­nan re­sponded in par­ody with her own ver­sion of a state­ment, re­fer­ring to a Chanel bag, via Twit­ter.

The hu­mor­ous jibe was well re­ceived and as of Fri­day had been retweeted 139 times and favour­ited 153 times – one of the most pop­u­lar tweets Ms MacTier­nan had ever posted.

Mr Good­e­nough did not bite back.

“In this place, there’s political ri­val­ries, but there’s also a lit­tle bit of par­ody and tak­ing the mickey out of peo­ple,” he said.

Not ev­ery­one was amused though.

Face­book user Chris Smith, not a fan of Mr Good­e­nough’s political views, was one of them. “I don’t like his pol­i­tics or his per­sonal views on some is­sues, but why is some petty non­sense about his watch even an is­sue?” he wrote on the Times’ Face­book page.

An­other Times’ reader Christo­pher JM shared a sim­i­lar view.

“Why is this even a story? Man buys Rolex. Good on him. Why is this an is­sue? Am I miss­ing some­thing?” he wrote.

Watched: MHR Ian Good­e­nough’s note has been lam­pooned.

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