If asked to describe myself, hardnosed-churl wouldn’t immediately spring to mind.
But after reading last week’s Listener I’ll have to add it to my list of defects because Jane Clifton says:
It’s a testimony to Clark’s standing that even this close to her election defeat, all but the hardest-nosed churls are immensely proud of her.
So here I am, not just a hard-nosed churl but one of the hardest because I’m not proud of her.
Remaining unmoved by Helen Clark’s apointment ot the UN is not just because of political bias. I don’t recall feeling proud of Mike Moore when he became leader of the WTO (though I did appreciate his efforts to free up trade) or of Don McKinnon when he became secretary general of the Commonwealth either.
Nor is it that I don’t do vicarious pride, I have been known to bask in others’ glory.
But, while I wish her well in her new position and hope she makes a positive difference with the UN’s development programme, I am too coloured by my view of her failings to feel proud of her.
I’m not denying her poltical skills nor her accomplishments, I accept that she genuinely wanted to make New Zealand better and I could overlook the fact that in many important ways she didn’t. But I can’t set aside her inability to admit her mistakes and accept she was wrong.
There were several instances of this but there are two that stand out:
* Signing a painting which wasn’t her own work when she was a busy Prmie Minister might have been understood if not condoned, but signing the half dozen or so of other people’s art works over 20 years to which she finally and grudgingly admitted is bazarre.
* deliberately spending taxpayers’ money on Labour’s pledge card then changing the law to validate it and then introducing the dog’s breakfast that was the EFA to enable her to do it again is corrupt.
Inquiring Mind is sure she’s no iron lady
Fairfacts Media diagnoses narcissism.
There are other views.
The Hand Mirror says congratulations
and John Key gave a gracious speech
But I’ll leave the last words – and picture – to Garrick Tremain: