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Imperator Fish: On that restaurant guy’s bid for mayor

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, March 2nd, 2016 - 19 comments
Categories: phil goff, Satire, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

Reprinted with permission from Imperator Fish.

It’s hard to know what John Palino was thinking when he decided to throw his hat into the ring and try once again for the Auckland mayoralty. I heard someone describe Monday’s campaign launch as a train-wreck, but I don’t think that’s at all accurate. The launch was such a disaster that I don’t think you could say the train even left the station.

Never mind that there are already two declared centre-right candidates, even if one is a nobody and the other doesn’t seem to understand that being mayor isn’t at all like being the CEO of a company. There’s also only so many times this blogger can hear someone talk about how “passionate” they are about Auckland before his bloodlust rises and he finally commences his long-delayed reaping.

So where does John Palino fit in here? Could he be just what the Super City needs? His plan to cut rates by 10% sounds like magical thinking, but maybe we all need a little bit of magic. Although why stop there? Why not 11%?

He is also promising a campaign that focuses on the issues, which will be why he is using Simon Lusk to run his campaign, Carrick Graham to do media and PR, and Cameron Slater to organise interviews. Given the track record of these gentlemen, it seems pretty clear what the issues will be: dishing the dirt, and then expressing shock and outrage when people challenge him on his team’s behaviour.

Or am I being unfair to Palino? Could he in fact be the victim here? The target of a savage smear campaign? I suppose it’s possible Palino didn’t have a clue what others in his campaign team were up to during the 2013 campaign, and is the victim of an ongoing and sophisticated campaign to shred his credibility. But let’s think that one through. This is a guy who wants to be put in charge of the most populous and economically important region in the country, and by his own admission he couldn’t even control the people in his small team. Didn’t have a clue what they were up to, apparently. Not the faintest idea. We should cut John Palino some slack for being unworldly and naïve, for being a nice guy without the faintest idea how to manage a team. Sure, John, of course we’ll give you control of a multi-billion-dollar organisation that directly impacts the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. What could go wrong?

So, anyway, let’s look at John Palino’s qualifications for office. He probably knows how to make a nice flat white. He can really shout when he gets worked up. He has nice hair. He had a TV show where he went into failing restaurants and cafes and tried to turn them around. He wears shoes. He has a house. And ears. He probably has a car, and a TV set, and a microwave oven. Oh, and he’s apparently a successful restaurateur, although I’m not sure that’s any more relevant than the other things I’ve just mentioned. He’d probably be good at running a restaurant business, but sadly for Palino the Auckland Council is not a restaurant. Maybe he could organise their catering.

But there you go, I’m being mean to Palino again. Maybe he’d do a good job, but I haven’t the faintest idea what he stands for or why he would do a better job than someone like Phil Goff who is a political insider, knows everyone, and is well connected. On the other hand, if you happen to think that what Auckland doesn’t need is another career politician in charge, then John Palino could be just the ticket. A rich outsider making extravagant promises he can’t hope to keep and saying things no-one believes to be true. Where have we heard that before? It sounds strangely familiar.

Maybe Palino’s next policy announcement will be building a wall across the Bombay Hills to keep all the dirty Waikato people out of our wonderful city.

19 comments on “Imperator Fish: On that restaurant guy’s bid for mayor ”

  1. Incognito 1

    Over-Inflated Ego Syndrome.

    Undoubtedly Dr Hooton will provide his diagnosis tout suite.

  2. pat 2

    with the flag referendum to begin perhaps this is all a distraction from the distraction?

  3. Penny Bright 3

    In my view – this 2016 Auckland Mayoral campaign is becoming like the ‘Wild West’!

    (A lot like this Auckland ‘Supercity’ – for the 1%?)

    Is the strategy perhaps – for John Palino to strategically withdraw his candidacy at a later stage?

    There are currently, in my view, now six Auckland Mayoral candidates who support the pro-corporate Auckland Supercity (for the 1%).

    DON’T SPLIT THE VOTE is electoral politics 101.

    So what is really going on behind the scenes with this John Palino Mayoral bid – especially given those key people who are involved?

    What has John Palino done for the public of Auckland since the last time he stood as an Auckland Mayoral candidate?

    Did you know that on the recent NBR poll asking who subscribers supported as a ‘centre-right’ candidate, Phil Goff polled second, closely behind Victoria Crone?

    Just asking … nicely.

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    (Who does NOT support the TPPA, road tolls, PPPs or the sale of Auckland assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course.)

    • Grindlebottom 3.1

      (Who does NOT support the TPPA, road tolls, PPPs or the sale of Auckland assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course.)

      Upper Hutt City Council?

  4. Stuart Munro 4

    Seriously, a yank representing Auckland? He must be the biggest carpet-bagger since de Thierry.

  5. gsays 5

    We have our own Donald trump!

    What with the obfuscation, the answering a different question to the one that was asked and the accent- the similarity is incredible.

    • Jenny Kirk 5.1

      + 100%

    • Rodel 5.2

      Saw this faux angry American on TV trying to emulate Trump. I was waiting for him to say,”I’m gonna make Okland great again!”

    • miravox 5.3

      “We have our own Donald trump!”

      Our own Donald Drumpf is sitting in the 9th floor of the beehive occasionally.

      Palino is just a pretender.

  6. saveNZ 6

    Sadly Auckland’s have little choice. All the candidates bar Penny are right wing and into asset sales or privatisation.

    It is like the General election options of Neoliberal 1, Neoliberal Lite 2, or crash property option 3 or the left fledging party that the others all spend most of their time and energy crushing, or the 2 centre right conservative fledging parties that the others spend all their time and energy crushing. Or the collaborators with Neoliberal 1.

    However at least there seemed more options in the General Election than the Mayoral candidates.

    If this is democracy it does not feel like it!

    • shorts 6.1

      yeah little choice at all – thinking about local body elections is always depressing, I console myself that at least in my case our local board has good people

      Auckland really does resist change doesn’t it

      • saveNZ 6.1.1

        @Shorts – Auckland wants change and we wanted public transport. We elected Len Brown – a leftie to bring us public transport and keep the public pools open and free.

        Len has been very disappointing, BUT when you look at the mayoral line up now, it’s about to get a lot worse.

        • Penny Bright

          You could always join my team Save NZ!

          Well – Bernie Sanders was never supposed to have had a chance 🙂

          And Winston Peters supposedly ‘didn’t have a show’ in the Northland by-election?

          I’m focusing on the 64% who didn’t bother voting in 2013.

          Also will be getting a hand from some Greens, NZ First, Mana and Labour supporters who prefer my stand and proven track record in opposing the TPPA, privatisation and user-charges.

          It’s going to be FUN!

          Kind regards

          Penny Bright
          2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

          (Activists – get things done 😉

  7. BLiP 7

    Or am I being unfair to Palino? Could he in fact be the victim here?

    I don’t think the writer is being unfair, but I can’t help but wonder whether Palino is, in fact, a victim. Have sophisticated, personal approach appeals to his ego convinced him that standing for Mayor is a good idea even though every voter in Auckland knows he hasn’t got a chance? The election outcome is, pretty much, a forgone conclusion, but so too is the fact that Simon Lusk, Carrick Graham, and Cameron Slater will be walking away with pockets full of Palino coin.

    • Penny Bright 7.1

      If Cameron Slater, Simon Lusk and Carrick Graham are on the ‘fringes’ of the National Party and business ‘movers and shakers’ – then how much do they arguably really care about their potentially vote-splitting activities in their support for John Palino’s Auckland Mayoral campaign?

      As long as they’re getting paid for their services?

      Or are they doing this ‘pro bono’?

      Just asking, in my view, some arguably fair questions?


      Penny Bright
      2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

      (Activists – get things done…. 😉

  8. ianmac 8

    If they can have the dishonest Trump, why not trump that with Palino for we the gullible?

  9. Penny Bright 9

    How much is John Palino paying Simon Lusk for campaign advice?

    John – you old silly-billy – you could have got it for free!

    Here’s Simon Lusk’s wee book about it:

    “Winning Local Government Campaigns: Part of the Paid to Win Series”

    Thank you Simon!

    Kind regards 🙂

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    (Activists – get things done 😉

  10. Incognito 10

    Perhaps Palino is also being used as a pawn in a different larger game. The Local Elections will be held on 8th October and next year we will have the General Election. There are about 1.5 million people living in Auckland. Those Key players in DP are masters in disguise & distraction.

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