I am filled with admiration for our Prime Minister.
The latest employment figures are a disaster, and appear to show that this government does not know how to grow the economy.
But John Key’s answer is “steady as she goes, don’t change course!”
When the path you are going down turns out to be filled with lethal hazards, one sensible option might be to turn back and try another, safer, way.
But our Mr Key is made of sterner stuff. He knows in his heart that these figures aren’t to be relied upon, because everything else tells him that things are getting better.
We read on a daily basis of further job losses and firm closures, but the people John Key speaks to tell him things are moving in the right direction, so clearly the statistics cannot be relied upon. Being a smart man of business, John Key understands that anecdata beats real data every time. He understands better than you or I ever will how the world really runs, and he knows that if his government continues along its current path things will eventually get better.
But how can he be so certain of these things? Because he’s smarter than us, and he knows us better than we know ourselves. His years of currency trading for mostly foreign clients have given him a unique insight into the Kiwi psyche, and his time at Merrill Lynch earned him valuable experience in the operation of financial markets. What does the average punter know about these things? We have not earned the right to question the wisdom of our PM, and if the statistics contradict his point of view, then the statistics must be wrong. How could it be otherwise?
I admire the courage of a politician to continue on such a path, even as the figures show a sluggish economy, growing unemployment, a growing gap between rich and poor, and more and more people moving to Australia to seek a better life and higher wages. John Key knows that everything will be all-right, because John Key knows that the magic market fairy will make everything better. We just have to be patient.