Clark & Ardern doing a Pilate

As a former minister of religion Health Minister David Clark will be familiar with the story of Pontius Pilate who washed his hands to absolve himself of any responsibility for Jesus’s life.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was raised a Mormon and should know the story too.

Both of them have washed their hands of the Covid-19 response omnishambles and sheeted all responsibility home on DIrector General of Health Ashley Bloomfield.

Ardern was very happy to share the platform and the glory with Bloomfield when he was being sanctified at the 1pm broadcasts through the lockdown but won’t accept the responsibility for the omnishambles or hold Clark responsible for the disgraceful way he behaved last night:

Health Minister David Clark has brutally thrown Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield under the bus while standing right next to him, after the Government’s quarantine testing botch-up. . . 

Dr Clark pointed blame at the Director-General as they stood next to each other in Wellington on Wednesday. 

Newshub’s footage captured Dr Bloomfield’s face after Dr Clark told reporters, “The Director-General has accepted that the protocol wasn’t being followed. He has accepted responsibility for that.”

If you click on the link you’ll see the footage as Clark humiliates his DG whose face shows how he is feeling.

Newshub asked the Health Minister why he won’t take some of the responsibility.

“The Director-General has already acknowledged that the system didn’t deliver here.”

It wasn’t just the system that didn’t deliver, the Minister was’t even present to deliver when he should have been front and centre.

Dr Clark shouldn’t be so quick to lay blame.

If Dr Bloomfield hadn’t been forced to step up as a de facto Health Minister during the COVID-19 response because Dr Clark was AWOL, perhaps Dr Bloomfield would’ve been able to focus on his actual job – running the operational side of things. . . 

A Minister shouldn’t be involved in operational matters but does have responsibility for ensuring that the right processes and systems are in place and they’re operating as they should be.

As Toby Manhire writes:

“Operational matters” aren’t a get-out-of-responsibility-free card. “Operational matters” can be substituted in most sentences for “things that happened”.

Throughout lockdown it was obvious there were problems with supply and deliver of personal protective equipment (PPE), the availability of testing, contact tracing and frustration from health workers that the Minister ought to have ensured were sorted.

Instead, he wasn’t even in Wellington most of the time and now he’s back he’s rewarded the man who was on the spot by pushing all the blame on him:

Health Minister David Clark has finally turned up to work, and when he did, his first job was to throw his Director-General of Health under the bus, Leader of the Opposition Todd Muller says.

“David Clark’s treatment of Ashley Bloomfield is a disgrace. He humiliated a man we have grown to respect and trust during lockdown.

“While Dr Bloomfield has fronted up day after day, Clark hasn’t even bothered to look at the quarantine arrangements that are so vital in protecting New Zealand from the virus.

“Clark is the very definition of a ‘non-essential worker’.”

Mr Muller observed that while the Minister of Health’s continued, bumbling presence defines the incompetence of the Labour Government, he shouldn’t be the one who should accept responsibility for the furore.

“Did the Prime Minister know that Clark would be directing all blame on Dr Bloomfield?

“Jacinda Ardern is happy to take centre-stage during lockdown briefings but as soon as there’s bad news, she is nowhere to be seen.

“For Ardern, when things go wrong, the buck stops with the frontline workers, never her Ministers, never herself.”

Ministers should not only take responsibility they must act responsibly.

By washing their hands Ardern and Clark are failing to do both.

3 Responses to Clark & Ardern doing a Pilate

  1. Tony says:

    “Clark is the very definition of a ‘non-essential worker’.”

    Indeed Ele. Clark was so non-essential, that the Prime Minister sent him to his home in Dunedin for the duration of L4 lockdown. As Minister of Health, with New Zealand facing unprecedented restrictions in the face of a global HEALTH pandemic, he should have been in Wellington running the show.

    David Clark’s treatment of Dr Ashley Bloomfield has been utterly disgraceful. If he does not have the foresight to resign, the PM should sack him, as she should have in April when he broke his own lockdown rules. If Labour loses the election, her failure to deal with Clark will be a significant contributing factor.

    Like

  2. adamsmith1922 says:

    Reblogged this on The Inquiring Mind and commented:
    Again Ardern’s lack of leadership and inept decisions is highlighted. Furthermore, David Clark is shown up for the incompetent fool that he is.

    Like

  3. Teletext says:

    Why is everyone surprised by this. It was obvious from day one that the “fairy princess” and her cohorts would be there to take all the glory but the moment that it all turned to custard, the blame was to be placed on the poor DG Dr Ashley Bloomfleld. Such a moment shows how totally incompetent and unfit to govern this omnishambles is.

    I certainly hope, for the country’s sake that Dr Bloomfield doesn’t need to take a personal grievance case against the Ministry as if this situation was raised during the claim the taxpayer funded payout would blow all previous payout records to smithereens.

    Yes there should be a sacking, the minister of course, but our “fairy princess” has shown time and time again, she’s incapable of making these tough decisions. This is going to cost the country dearly soon. I think that she may be forced to do at least some small thing soon as the public response to the Dr of Divinity’s treatment of Dr Bloomfield may start to affect their polling results and the reality of that might force some action, although it will be “too little too late”.

    Like

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