Duncan Garner: It was Winston’s week
In politics it’s never the crime – it’s always the sloppy and poorly executed cover-up that gets them every time.
And boy did we see that with the ‘‘Baby Barclay’’ pantsing last week.
What a mess – and so woefully handled by a bumbling Bill English in his first true test of managing a scandal as prime minister. Put on the spot, he failed. The current PM is certainly no John Key when it comes to sprinting backwards, blindfolded, out of a raging inferno without getting so much as singed.
This scandal should matter and does matter.
Todd Barclay, at worst, illegally taped a staff member, refused to co-operate with a police inquiry and sent it upstairs to then-pm John Key, who agreed to a secret taxpayer payout in the form of hush money to make it all go away.
The truth is Barclay, Key and English all knew the facts and struck the secret deal to pull down the southern shutters on this sordid affair, hoping the dead bodies would be buried in a far flung corner of Southland, never to be seen or heard again.
That would allow Barclay to carry on as a new young MP with an exciting future.
No problems right? Dead (meat) wrong.
No wonder Key shot through and ran for the nearest (private) golf course. He must be chuckling from the 19th hole.
Like Houdini, he made a great escape from certain death which came in the form of something as simple as the truth.
What I learned in my time at Parliament was two things, sadly sceptical and breathlessly cynical, but this was my experience of a 17-year lag in the place.
1: The truth usually comes out, and 2; an MP’S default setting, when under pressure, is to lie.
Then National, just as they were sinking in their own slime, got thrown a red lifeline from their brain-dead attackers.
National’s get-out-of-jail card came in the form of a surprise visit from the truly incompetent Labour Party and their stunning double standards and sickening hypocrisy.
These so-called defenders of higher wages, better working conditions and cuts to the so-called fraud of international students coming into the country were found guilty of an old and common disease called; ‘‘egg on truly embarrassed red-face’’.
Can you actually believe Labour’s dirty little plan?
Labour imports 85 slaves in the form of foreign students, chucks them in a crummy marae with a broken shower and sub-standard dorms and hopes they’ll work for free on the election campaign with the distant hope of a lecture by Helen Clark about, (cue more hypocrisy) democratic and human rights.
If Labour’s union mates and funders weren’t so close to all this they’d be speaking out criticising it. But this is their club - they’ll stay silent like the poodles they are.
So there’s only winner here – the smiling travelling salesman, Winston Peters.
And because we all have dreadfully short memories, we’ve forgotten his selective amnesia over his party’s secret Spencer Trust and the number of times he’s been a total disaster and been sacked from government.
Argh, forget it, all is forgiven. Winston’s a winner this week.
Because the two major parties looked like tired, lying, hopeless cover-up merchants and hypocrites.
And Winston flashed us all of his 32 perfect teeth and said, pick me.
Clutha-southland MP Todd Barclay resigned this week.