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“We’re all shades of sheep” – the Calvert interview

Written By: - Date published: 1:28 pm, September 25th, 2010 - 44 comments
Categories: act, interview - Tags: ,

Check out Hilary Calvert’s interview in the ODT. It’s, um, extraordinary and hilarious. Calvert can’t remember whether she was ever a member of a different political party, when she first stood for ACT, or whether she has any convictions. More evidence of the depth of talent in ACT these days.

Q Have you been a member of any political party other than Act?
A I’m not sure. I might well have been a member of both Labour and National in an earlier formative stage of my life. They have records. They could tell you.
Q When did you first stand for Parliament?
A I think it was, and I’m going to have to go and have a look at some of these things… I think it was probably, it might have been 2002. It might have been 1999 but I think it was probably 2002. It would have been Dunedin North.

Can’t remember what parties sh’e sbeen in, when she ran for Parliament, and not 100% sure where. It’s not like she’s being asked where she left her keys.

Q Someone described you as perhaps being the black sheep of your family by being a right-leaning politician but it only applies to your mother, does it?
A We used to laugh sometimes. In the last 10 years or so we would go up to the polling booth, five of us . . . and we’d all be members of the family and we would all be voting different ways… So, we’re all shades of sheep in that sense.
Q How did you get on the Act list?
A Back in the day, [an Act party member] came to our door and said: ‘What do you think about Act?’ and that was the first I had heard of it. And I thought that makes a certain amount of sense. So that’s how I got involved.

That’s how I got involved in the Moonies.

Btw, does that mean her own family doesn’t vote for her?

Q In dollar terms, how much do you think you have spent personally on getting into Parliament?
A I’ve got no idea. If you campaign in Dunedin North you are campaigning against Pete Hodgson. And I mean, quite frankly, it’s not going to happen for you. So, any money the party spends in Dunedin North is money spent wanting the Act Party vote, not the seat… I’m not a person who naturally just puts my hand in my pocket and says I’ll give you a whole lot of money, why don’t you choose me? In fact, I’m essentially Scottish. It’s sort of like people who are Maori who think of themselves as Maori, if they’re that way inclined. Although I’m a variety of different things in my background the one that bubbles to the surface from time to time that I notice is the eighth or sixteenth part of me that’s Scottish.

She lost me when she started talking about Maori and blaming her great-greatgrandad for her tight-fistedness. Actually, she lost me well before that.

Q Any convictions you would like to declare now?
A Look, I don’t think I have but I will find out. I think I can from the police… I’ll probably go and do that in the next while because I can’t think of anything useful as an answer to that question. I’m not saying I’ve never had; look I don’t even remember a speeding ticket actually, but I’m not saying I’ve never had one.
Q I would have thought a conviction would have stood out enough that you would have remembered it.
A Yes, that’s what I think too. I’m just very wary with all this crap that’s going on at the moment. Friends have been sending me things saying I remember when you didn’t wear your gloves and your beret at school… You would expect me to remember and I’m not trying to be coy. I’m just not wanting to say there’s nothing there in case I’ve just had sort of a mental block or something and then you come back and say: ‘You told me there was nothing’.

Ah, yes, the great beret and gloves scandal. Wait, what?

Q According to The New Zealand Herald you “unreservedly” support Rodney Hide. Why?
A I support him as leader. He is the leader. But what Act doesn’t require is caucus not focusing on Act core business and I’ll be in there focusing on Act core business. The people in Act are the messengers that take our policies to the people. He’s the leader. He’s the chief messenger at the moment; has been for some time.
Q Has your support wavered at any point – the taxpayer-funded holiday for instance, the handling of the Garrett business?
A It’s a small party and there are lots of things to be handling here and there. I think these things aren’t sort of illegal or whatever. They are the sort of things that when you wake up in the morning you’d think that wasn’t a very smart choice to make. But you are making choices all the time. And Rodney himself said that the choice he’d made about having the taxpayer fund his girlfriend-partner overseas was a bad one and the wrong one.
Q Is your support for the man or for the only Act member with an electorate seat?
A Probably both. I don’t think I’d want to chose one or the other. Clearly the Epsom seat is crucial to us particularly at this stage and I would support Rodney in that and as leader. But I don’t think it’s an either/or.
Q Could you ever contemplate supporting Heather Roy?
A It’s sort of one of those questions like y’know if your wife left you do you think you’d ask for half? Who’s to say? She hasn’t left.

So if Hide is rolled, Calvert’s suing him for alimony?

Q How much of a commitment on your part is it to go to Wellington facing the prospect that Act might not be there after the next election?
A There’s a possibility we could all be dead, isn’t there? It’s surprising that earthquake didn’t get some people in Christchurch, wasn’t it? Things happen. It’s very important we do get a party like Act in Parliament.

One for the tasteless comparisons file

Q How can you be helpful to the Act party?
A As a lawyer, legal training is very useful when you are in Parliament because of the legislative things that are going on… So having lawyers look over documents, as much as we don’t like lawyers on the whole, is quite a useful thing.

Calvert’s clearly the kind of person one turns to for succinct and clear explanations.

I guess this shows what a state ACT is in these days.

The leader is an unprincipled slime-bag who has taken democracy away from Auckland and proven himself a perks hypocrite.

The former deputy is a middle-aged mum of five who convinced the Army to waste tens of thousands of dollars training her to be a Territorial when she would obviously never get the call-up (high-value government spending, anyone?).

Number 3’s name is used to invoke terror in small kids across the country (‘if you don’t behave and go to bed Roger Douglas will come and steal your future’).

Number 4, the current Deputy. I don’t know if he actually has some kind of obsessive compulsive disorder but something’s not right (who can forget “Answer my question, Prime Minister!”?) and got his list placing because he donated so much money.

Number 5 got in as a sop to the Sensible Sentencing Trust even though that meant covering up his own disgusting offences and lies to the Court.

And, now, Number 6, well what can you say? I guess when you’re ranked below the obsessive weirdo and the identity thief you’re hardly going to be pick of the crop.

44 comments on ““We’re all shades of sheep” – the Calvert interview”

  1. IrishBill 1

    But to give her her due this is a pretty funny response to the predictable brothel question:

    I’ve got a variety of interests in real estate round town and the tenants… include a finance company, bank and lawyers and a variety of places, but they also include a massage parlour. So I think some people might be more concerned that as a landlord I’ve got an interest in housing a finance company. That might be a worse thing to do, I don’t know. But that’s where that came from. I’m not financially interested in the massage parlour. I’m a landowner.

  2. Eddie 2

    yeah, that’s pretty funny. but given her other answers I think it’s unintentional.

  3. Tigger 3

    So ACT doesn’t screen candidates for criminal convictions? Well that maakes a lot of sense now.

    What lawyer can’t remember criminal convictions? We’re not talking speeding and parking tickets, these aren’t legally ‘convictions’ and she would know that.

    She thinks she’s Scottish but doesn’t even know how much? Honey, if that’s your driving force you might want to do some genealogy.

    Train, meet wreck….

  4. “we’re all shades of sheep” – if you read ‘shades’ with the meaning ‘ghosts’ it’s a very apt description of the ACT party.

  5. Searlo 5

    “It’s surprising that earthquake didn’t get some people in Christchurch, wasn’t it? Things happen. It’s very important we do get a party like Act in Parliament. ”

    Where do they get these people?

    • bbfloyd 5.1

      Searlo.. from the kind of catalogue you have to send away for, and comes in a plain brown wrapper i suspect.

  6. felix 6

    Eh?

    So after everything that’s happened over the last 2 weeks she doesn’t know if she’s got a criminal record?

    And here’s the weird bit: that implies that Rodney hasn’t asked her!

    (Either that or she’s lying of course)

  7. Jim Nald 7

    Calvert in ACT: more baa-d ?

  8. gobsmacked 8

    A comic tour de farce from Hilary there.

    But in between the gags, she gives us a clear preview of what’s about to happen in the ACT caucus:

    “I support him as leader. He is the leader. But what Act doesn’t require is caucus not focusing on Act core business and I’ll be in there focusing on Act core business. The people in Act are the messengers that take our policies to the people. He’s the leader. He’s the chief messenger at the moment; has been for some time.”

    Translation: I’m with Heather and Roger, it’s bye-bye Rodney and Garth McVicar.

    Of course Hide knows this, but the next on the list is Peter Tashkoff, so any way you look at it, Rodney’s toast.

    • Lazy Susan 8.1

      Agreesd G. She clearly signals Wodney’s a gonna. Just about the only thing she appears to be clear about!

  9. Jeremy Harris 9

    Wow, that is one bad interview, I can’t wait for her maiden speech:

    “There are things that we know and things that we don’t know, but there are also things we know we don’t know – known unknowns, and things we don’t know we don’t know – unknown unknowns”…

    If I’m arrested in the mean streets of Dunedin North I think I’ll represent myself…

    I thought Kerre Woodham had made it into Parliament when I saw the photo…

  10. Irascible 10

    Calvert is a miracle of linguistic gymnastics as she turns herself inside out.
    Introduce her to Tolley as a candidate to test the much vaunted National Literacy Standards on. Then ask Tolley to write an assessment and recommendations how to improve based on the helicopter overview the National Standards have provided.
    Calvert’s convolutions would fail her at NCEA level 1 for literacy.

    • bbfloyd 10.1

      Irascable.. you’re assuming tolley would be competent to give the test in the first place…

  11. Ian 11

    This woman has a memory like a sieve. Like Jeremy I can’t wait for her maiden speech.

  12. Tiger Mountain 12

    Rather pathetic really. Wouldn’t want her as a legal rep if I was in a tight spot. What Springbok tour!

    • Maybe she is just following the example given by our glorious leader. He cannot remember what his opinion on the Springbok tour was, despite the fact he was 20 at the time. As if …

  13. Carol 13

    It’s all smoke, mirrors, diversion & spin. Calvert’s memory lapses are meant to show that any MP could forget past brushes with the law. Except, as this thread shows, we’re not that gullible.

    The ACToids are showing themselves to be a moral/ethical void. They don’t get the significance of the difference between identity theft, passport fraud and more trivial offences. They try to spin them as being the same. They don’t really care, as long as they can spin a line that the majority swallows, and hope the voters will move on and forget the depth of hypocrisy – nothing matters except all that glitters…. and lock up those they don’t have access to the real, gold, or god forbid, that have a way of stealing some of NACT mates’ gains from creative accounting, creative politicking, and creative ethics!

  14. Rex Widerstrom 14

    The last thing we want is someone so uninterested and disengaged with politics that she can’t recall when she stood for Parliament or which party or parties she might have been a member of.

    We need passionate, dedicated and determined people with clear goals for how they want to change New Zealand. Which is exactly the kind of person John Boscawen has, so far, struck me as being.

    You see “some kind of obsessive compulsive disorder” I see a dedication to principle which translates into active engagement and a determination to see things through.

    You see a somewhat histrionic advertisement (as do I) but beneath it I see real passion for an issue and a willingness to spend his own money pursuing it. And I see frustration – which I share – at politicians whose arrogance leads them to dismiss the concerns of vast numbers of their fellow citizens with glib epithets.

    I’d rather this sort of person – even if they’re passionately fighting for ideas I oppose – than the principle-and-goal-free zone Hilary Calvert appears to be.

    And where you say “got his list placing because he donated so much money”, I say “evidence please?”. His donation of $100,000 was made on 26 September 2008. The ACT party list was announced on 20 August 2008. I guess perhaps he could have signed a secret pledge or something, but that’d be pure speculation – which I imagine is the entire basis for your smear… and would a multimillionaire really bother buying a job with a $130k salary?

    • felix 14.1

      Couple of things Rex.

      1) Did Boscowen know about Garrett? Cos if he did he’s no better than the others.

      2) He has donated more than that to the party over the years, even going by the declared donations.

      3) Are you fucking kidding? He didn’t buy a $130k salary, if he bought anything he bought power. He’s a government minister in his first frickin term.

      You’re using the same logic as the morons who say “Key wouldn’t rip us off, he’s already rich and doesn’t even need his salary”.

      This is the first time I’ve seen a smart person use that reasoning and I’m surprised, Rex. You know better than that.

      (p.s. I don’t have anything against Boscowen. He seems like a bit of a spoilt rich kid but he also seems genuine in his beliefs in exactly the way Hide doesn’t. Time will tell though.)

      • Rex Widerstrom 14.1.1

        1. Agreed entirely. I can only hope the answer is no. And even if he didn’t know about Garrett’s background his peculiar thinking would have been apparent and I’m disappointed he went along with it.

        2. Okay, but provided it’s all declared I have no problem with that.

        3. No, there’s a difference… Key might “rip us off” based on his beliefs (or lack thereof) regardless of his wealth. As might someone like Paula Bennett, who’s been poor. That’s a different thing altogether and I agree that that’s naive reasoning.

        I’m saying no one with money would see a backbench MP’s salary and perks worth buying when greater influence could be had by, say, donating substantially to the National or Labour Party and owning a complete set of MPs 😀

        Remember that when he gave those donations, the only thing he would have been guaranteed was backbench MP status if Act won a sufficient number of votes to get 4 people in. The coalition with National wasn’t guaranteed (though I accept it was a probability, but one dependent on a National win) and nor was being a Minister.

        I don’t think he gave money with the intention of being rewarded. I think he gave money to something he believed in (wonder what he really thinks now?!) and stood for election out of the same motives.

        • felix 14.1.1.1

          That’s fair enough, and I take your point about being able to buy more influence without standing himself.

          But we’re still ignoring ego, vanity, hubris, and all the other things that might drive a person into politics aside from just raw power 😉 .

          My gut tends to agree with your last para re his motives. (I do have a habit of being monumentally wrong about these things though)

        • prism 14.1.1.2

          Trust me to go for the trivial. That matching set of MPs – would they be Hawaii-bound (ours wouldn’t be Morrocco-bound) and what sort of shelf bookends would they have?

    • bbfloyd 14.2

      fair go guys, we may be mocking the afflicted here.. a case could be made for a medical condition affecting her higher brain functions.

      • Colonial Viper 14.2.1

        yeah, a zombie land virus infection, but one which still lets the body respond – albeit abysmally – to reporters’ questions.

  15. ZeeBop 15

    A bit of a deadend for ACT, a Calvert Sack even.

  16. Rharn 16

    Interesting mindset for lawyer: Calvert thinks that stealing the ID of a deceased infant and lying to a Judge (perjury) is a ‘load of crap.’

    As for the need to ask the police to confirm or deny any convictions is there something in her background that gives her some concern?

    As for ethics I don’t not know if she has any daughters but I doubt any
    ‘ responsible’ mother would be collecting rent from a brothel where ‘her’ daughter worked. But it’s OK to collect rent for some other mothers daughter.

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      There are a lot of bad environments and bad events which happen to NZ young people. And yes, it does seem that a lot of people think its OK as long as it happens to someone elses’ kids.

  17. Rodel 17

    I used to be amused by Winston taking the piss out of the media.
    In his absence I went to the Fox channel or the comedy channel for laughs.
    Now we have the ACT Party. Yea! Its the funniest!!
    Hope Winston gets back ’cause ACT won’t be there to laugh at. shame that !

    • prism 17.1

      Winston we miss you – as the song goes ‘Nobody does it better’ – that is, string a line to the media and get the reporters tied up in knots.

  18. Drakula 18

    Oh Dear, Oh Dear, Oh Dear, Calvert seems to have a bit of a memory problem for a lawer doesn’t she.

    She can’t remamber whether she has been in a different political Party.

    She can’t remember whether she has a criminal record.

    She can’t remember whether she wore berets and black gloves

    Would you have her as your lawer? Damned if I would Judging from what she has uttered above I am not quite sure as to whether she is mentaly challenged or just plain crooked like the rest of her coleagues in ACT.

  19. outofbed 19

    “I’m not financially interested in the massage parlour. I’m a landowner”
    Why is that not a financial interest?
    She get finances from renting the property out to people who get money for providing shagging services. So therefore the rent is paid because someone daughter is on their back for half the night
    One could say if she charged less rent the aforementioned daughters would not have to earn as much,
    Conversely if she puts the rent up….

    • Jim Nald 19.1

      Folk must really wonder if she herself really believes in what she is saying
      … and that applies to her other rambles

    • prism 19.2

      I am sure that paid sex is hard work and it is legal. And sex is something we all owe our lives to, apart from special cases, so even if we wouldn’t want our daughters to be working in the sector why condemn those that do or their landlords. Town planning regulations do apply for me though, to give some control over position of premises. I don’t want this type of commercial activity just anywhere, same with bars.

  20. Patricia M 20

    Seeing her gadding about the town, wearing a long coat and black trilby hat with flowing, dyed blond hair, one is reminded of “Spy versus Spy” and “Alice in Wonderland”. Just another dark force for Twinkle Toes Rodney to worry about .LOL. :>)

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