English’s three strikes

Written By: - Date published: 1:23 pm, January 16th, 2017 - 32 comments
Categories: bill english - Tags: , , ,

How’s Bill English doing? John Roughan in The Herald is not impressed – Bill English is not following his best instincts

First there was the response to a question that came out of left field on just his second week in Key’s chair. “Are you a feminist?” he was asked after his deputy and newly appointed Minister of Women’s affairs had said she was, “most days”.

English replied, “I wouldn’t quite know what that means.” Of course he knows what it means but the more interesting question is, why did he say that?

It was the wrong answer on several levels. It was not true, it was not credible, it struck an odd note in the news and it was not where the National Party has been under Key.

Imagine how he would have answered the question. “Well, at the end of the day I believe women are just as capable as men and we shouldn’t have barriers in their way.” There’s a more heartfelt answer many men would give: “You bet I am, I have a daughter.” But almost anything is better than, “I wouldn’t know what it means.”

Strike one.

English’s second definitive step so far is the decision not to go to Waitangi.

He did not need to speak at Te Tii’s powhiri. The speeches are made inside the meeting house and the media do not go in there. The real test of a Prime Minister is at the dawn karakia next morning when a little bit of soul is required. English would be very good at it, better than Key probably. But he seems determined to be a backwoodsman in public. Pity.

Strike two.

And in the news today – PM on climate change: moderate not ‘extreme’ response needed

English is currently in Europe on his first overseas trip as Prime Minister. Asked about his past comments, he said he had always thought there had been some “extreme” views about climate change and the appropriate response.

“Some people want to inflict considerable pain on the economy to prove the point. And I have never believed in that extreme view,” English said.

“But I think New Zealand’s views are moderate [and] sound, and we have good tools in place…and I think we should aim to keep the Emissions Trading System [ETS] in place.”

Defending the mockery that National have made of the ETS, and still couching a green economy as a cost not an opportunity – Bill English is a fool. Three strikes, you’re out.

32 comments on “English’s three strikes”

  1. Our very own manuel from fawlty towers. ‘me know nothing’

  2. Andre 2

    $350 million on fraudulent russian carbon credits while a 19% increase in emissions . English is going to condemn this country to a bill we will never be able to pay . Hope our kids subject us the disdain we deserve in leaving them an impending car crash economy /environment http://www.nature.com/news/carbon-credit-scheme-linked-to-increased-greenhouse-gas-production-1.18238

    • Andre 2.1

      Hi, just letting you know I’ve been active using that same handle. While I’d be likely to post what you’ve just put up, you may not want to own all my opinions. So do you want to choose another handle, or should I?

  3. Gabby 3

    I wonder if Roughy is one of Judy’s boys.

  4. red-blooded 4

    It’s notable that he’s criticising English’s tentative start as PM, but still seems to a fan of the man himself, “a deep and liberal thinker”…etc. He also pokes a dig at Little.
    I wish I could see this piece as a sign of the worm turning, but I think that would be reading too much into it.

  5. Paul 5

    Caretaker PM out it touch.
    Now get the media to ask him about our levels of inequality….

  6. Bill 6

    On his “strike one”, I’m not so sure why it’s assumed that he does know what being a feminist means. I’m taking him at his word.

    On his “strike three”, the pretend and extend approach to climate change where everything gets kicked down the road while we carry on carrying on; that’s the extreme response that will inflict severe pain on the economy, on society, on real people – on many generations of people. And all to ‘prove the point’ (inevitably to fail to prove the point) that we could carry on like this in spite of physics.

    • Paul 6.1

      This caretaker government is very vulnerable on climate change

        • Paul 6.1.1.1

          Are you a climate change denier?

          • Puckish Rogue 6.1.1.1.1

            When did the conversation about climate change become so religiously slanted?

            Denier, unbeliever, heretic, infidel

            • Bill 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Physics. Believe it?

              • Puckish Rogue

                I’m more concerned about the language, I think sceptic is a better term to use instead of denier.

                • Paul

                  You would.

                • Bill

                  So you’d think it ‘acceptable’ to be skeptical of physics as opposed to denying physics? Yeah. I think I can see why that.

                  So pray tell, about NZ governments denial of physics as evinced by their lack of appropriate response to climate change – any thoughts to share on that front?

                • AB

                  Nope – it’s the climate change denial that’s religiously charged because it flies in the face of evidence.
                  Climate change denial is a position based on a total faith in the sanctity of markets and that any outcome produced by a market is good and just because a market produced it, and that markets can cause no harm and must never be interfered with.
                  The word ‘sceptic’ implies balance, careful consideration of facts, caution and intelligence. Climate change deniers exhibit none of these qualities.
                  As usual PR has things 180 degrees arse about face

            • Anno1701 6.1.1.1.1.2

              “When did the conversation about climate change become so religiously slanted? ”

              they actually call it “science” bud, we separated those two things a while a go…

    • Pat 6.2

      think all three strikes are the result of a deliberate strategy not to have a firm position on anything controversial….and thereby avoid any potential fallout….am well aware that some will now say he hasn’t avoided fallout (i.e. Waitangi) however I contend that those he has upset were unlikely Nat supporters and he has avoided a potentially far more damaging fallout.

      as key himself may have said….im pretty relaxed about that or at the end of the day i can find another opinion….and BE said he’d learnt from Key remember.

  7. Puckish Rogue 7

    That’s funny, in terms of being re-elected I thought he did pretty well. I mean the whole question of feminism isn’t up there in election breakers.

    Mind you I don’t know the actual numbers of women that label themselves feminists so I could be completely wrong about this

    In regards to climate change I believe the majority of voters want moderation not extremism, of course we won’t know until the next election

    Finally not going to Waitangi is not going to hurt his chances at all, in fact will probably only help.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      In regards to climate change I believe the majority of voters want moderation not extremism, of course we won’t know until the next election

      Polls show, quite clearly, that the people do want more than what National have been doing.

      Considering the fact that going radical on it would be massively beneficial economically I suspect that the people, once they get a taste for for it, would be enthusiastic about radical solutions. Same as they were enthusiastic about the 1st Labour government reforms that were just as radical.

      Finally not going to Waitangi is not going to hurt his chances at all, in fact will probably only help.

      Well, it’ll certainly help with the racist scum suckers.

      • Pat 7.1.1

        None of that matters to national….they have only one goal…to ensure Labour are not in the Treasury benches

  8. Cinny 8

    The outgoing PM’s moderate take on climate change is to ban plastic microbeads in cosmetics.

    We all know that the Government needs to do so much more than that.

  9. Andrea 9

    It’s not as if he’s a beginner in the job…

    And – how come Waitangi gets the money-spinner and the ‘chance to air the grievances’ each year?

    No wonder Feb 6 is no rival to July 4. It only ‘happens’ up north and the rest of us just take the day off.

    Typical Kiwi ‘culture’, eh?

  10. fisiani 10

    How low can you scrape the barrel? Is that all you can try to cast against Bill English? A total beat up. He refused to take the reporters bait, he refused to be silenced at Waitangi and he refused to be a climate extremist. Excellent work.

    • Wensleydale 10.1

      When future generations (if we even get that far) are floating around the ocean in water wings because you felt that addressing the very real fact of climate change was “extreme”, I’m sure they’ll be overwhelmed with gratitude that you took such a rational and pragmatic approach to securing their future.

      Time to increase your medication, Fizzy.

  11. Kevin 11

    I don’t have a problem with English’s stance on climate change.

    We have well and truly missed the window of opportunity we had to do something about it so maintaining the status quo is neither harmful nor beneficial.

    I year or two is going to make no difference to the end game.

    I am not a prophet of doom, I think a realist is a better description. I am gutted for the future of my two young children and know that the selfishness of mine and previous generations has given them no chance of a long and prosperous life so quibbling over what action can be taken, to delay the inevitable, is pointless.

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