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March 25, 2013 | by  | in Opinion |
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Collective Amnesia

Political Right

Sometimes you have to wonder what is in the water at Parliament. Over the past few years there has been a spectacular breakdown in the cognitive prowess of our members of Parliament. Whether it is what Labour call a “brain fade” or just plain old amnesia, MPs seem to forget things with alarming regularity.

To show I am fair, before I rip savagely into David Shearer I should perhaps cite some examples from the right. The Prime Minister has, since the last election, been accused of knowing that the Government Communications and Security Bureau (GCSB) was spying on Kim Dotcom. This is illegal, as the GCSB cannot by law spy on residents or Citizens. Kim dotcom was a resident at the time.

Then there is the Member for Epsom, John Archibald Banks. Banks claims to have never met Dotcom, despite the fact Dotcom paid for a huge fireworks display while Banks was still Mayor of Auckland and donated to Banksie’s failed attempt to become the first super-city Mayor of an amalgamated Auckland Council. Amnesia may be a common device in soaps like Shortland Street, but coming from a guy who can remember speeches given by Sir Robert Muldoon in 1983, saying “I don’t recall” just does not cut the mustard.

Now we turn to David Shearer. Mr Shearer, since winning the Labour leadership purely due not to who he is, but to who he isn’t (David Cunliffe) has lurched from disaster to clusterfuck. The past six months in Parliament have been dominated by the Opposition launching coordinated attacks led by Shearer and Labour on the Prime Minister’s integrity. On occasion, they have used four or five questions out of the 12 asked during Question Time, all on the same issue of the Prime Minister’s integrity and forgetfulness. What he did and did not know about Kim Dotcom has become a political football. Then Mr Shearer blew his own foot clear off.

Earlier this week, david Shearer updated his entry in the register of Pecuniary Interests, which as the title suggests, discloses MPs commercial and financial interests. He just casually added that he has an American bank account from his time working for the UN with more than $50,000 in it! For someone seeking the high office of Prime Minister, to not be able to manage his own financial affairs is a serious blow to Mr Shearer’s credibility. Why would anyone ever vote Labour under Mr Shearer?

I forget….

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Salient is a magazine. Salient is a website. Salient is an institution founded in 1938 to cater to the whim and fancy of students of Victoria University. We are partly funded by VUWSA and partly by gold bullion that was discovered under a pile of old Salients from the 40's. Salient welcomes your participation in debate on all the issues that we present to you, and if you're a student of Victoria University then you're more than welcome to drop in and have tea and scones with the contributors of this little rag in our little hideaway that overlooks Wellington.

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