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Todd Barclay imploding in Clutha-Southland

Written By: - Date published: 10:01 am, March 8th, 2016 - 170 comments
Categories: national, useless - Tags: , , ,

Standing a 23 year old Nat Party insider and ex tobacco lobbyist in the safe National (ex Bill English) seat of Clutha-Southland was always an insult to the electorate, but the good burghers loyally voted for the blue gumboot. (Labour’s Dr Liz Craig would have made a magnificent MP, but it was not to be.) Now it looks like the wheels are falling off Barclay’s bus.

It started with the resignations of long-serving electorate staff. From the Southland Times:

Unexplained departure of Barclay staffer troubling

Politicians’ staff come and go. But those like Glenys Dickson are neither flighty nor especially dispensable. She is a redoubtable figure in the southern political firmament, having served an extraordinarily successful 16 years as Bill English’s electorate agent.

Dickson’s sudden departure as Clutha-Southland MP Todd Barclay’s senior electorate agent, in circumstances being described as an “employment problem” , was never going to be news inertly received in the electorate, in spite of his denial, when we asked, that there had been any falling out.

The strong impression is that more must now come out into the public arena. That’s a view only strengthened by the all-but-simultaneous resignation of Dickson’s counterpart in Queenstown, Barbara Swan, albeit that this is reportedly on 10 weeks’ notice and for family reasons…

The question must now be asked whether Barclay is in serious strife within his party electorate and whether this in turn represents broader community dissatisfaction.

This was soon followed by:

National party Clutha-Southland chairman Stuart Davie resigns

A third resignation has rocked National Party ranks in MP Todd Barclay’s Clutha-Southland electorate.

The party’s electorate chairman Stuart Davie resigned on Sunday evening. He said on Monday it was “untenable” for him to carry on at this time.

Davie declined to comment further, but his departure raises further questions about 25-year-old Barclay’s relationship with his staff and party members in his electorate. …

Barclay was forced to apologise for releasing Swan’s resignation letter to the media, the matter is under investigation by Parliamentary Services. As the plot thickens there are further claims that Barclay made a “secret recording” of a meeting.

With Barclay obviously in trouble in his electorate, out come the most senior Nats to try and smooth it over. According to Bill English: Clutha-Southland electorate resignations part of ‘transition’ to new MP. According to John Key: Number of National Party resignations in Todd Barclay’s Clutha-Southland seat not unusual. Yeah right.

No one is buying the whitewash, and yesterday:

Disquiet over MP Todd Barclay’s performance could spark selection challenge

Disquiet over a spate of resignations in Clutha-Southland MP Todd Barclay’s electorate could spark a challenge from within the National Party at the next election, a party source says.

Another source said: “We feel we’ve given him a great deal of rope in order to deal with that, nothing seems to have improved at all.” …

Seems Barclay may not make it to the next election. Another imploding junior MP from the party that brought you Aaron Gilmore, Claudette Hauiti, Shane Reti, Parmjeet Parmar, Melissa Lee and the rest…

170 comments on “Todd Barclay imploding in Clutha-Southland ”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Barclay was all of 4 months old when Bill English first won the Wallace seat in 1990.

  2. BLiP 2

    I wonder . . . when he is de-selected, would that make him the youngest ex-MP?

    🙂

  3. Steve Withers 3

    You have to wonder why he was selected at all….ever.

    • TC 3.1

      He holds a DP qualification from the lusk-ede institute of neolib agenda setting.

      • Richard McGrath 3.1.1

        All this constant talk of “neo-libs” in the National Party is laughable. The only MP with classical liberal leanings in our parliament is David Seymour. Witness the recent votes by Nat MPs in favour of a rise in the minimum wage and for a ban on zero hours contracts. No self-respecting classical liberal would have voted that way.

        • McFlock 3.1.1.1

          classical ain’t neo. Quite the opposite.

          • Richard McGrath 3.1.1.1.1

            How so? Both champion the ideas of limited government, laissez-faire economics, deregulation, private property rights, rational self-interest, fiscal responsibility, free speech and voluntary exchange.

            However, I believe when the term ‘neoliberalism’ was first coined, it was seen as a middle course between classical liberalism (libertarianism) and socialism. Later it became subsumed into classical liberalism and is now synonymous.

            • McFlock 3.1.1.1.1.1

              If you can’t google or wikipedia the rest of it to your satisfaction, go do a pols degree.

              I’m not your free tutor, and this isn’t the right comment thread.

  4. vto 4

    23 years old, how ridiculous

    of course he was going to stuff up

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      Well not necessarily. But there’d be very few 23 year olds who could pull it off.

      Certainly ones who have been given patsy jobs due to their connections rather than their competence and have bought their own spin that they’re amazing successful people are highly likely to fail.

      • vto 4.1.1

        The number of 23 year olds who could pull it off would be so small as to be statistically insignificant.

        • Lanthanide 4.1.1.1

          Again, I don’t really agree.

          I think there’d be quite a few 23 year olds that could – however they are much more likely going to be studying in university towards PHds or otherwise gainfully occupied, and entering NZ politics (especially for the National party, in Southland) would not be attractive to them.

        • David Garrett 4.1.1.2

          Wasn’t your female Leader in Waiting 23 when she was elected?

          Marilyn Waring’s early politics seem to have been completely forgiven by the left..I believe she was 23 or 24 when first elected

          • mickysavage 4.1.1.2.1

            At least she became more left wing as she grew older. You should try it David.

            • David Garrett 4.1.1.2.1.1

              Nah…Like most of us, I grew up Mr Presland…(Oh dear, I hope using your real name – which everyone knows – is not a banning offence on here….there appear to be so many of them..)

              And of course, now cue “witty” references to my 30 year offence, and “dead babies’ ” names…

              • McFlock

                lol

                You can be a farmer as long as you want, and you might or might not live out your days being known as a farmer.
                You can hammer metal in a forge all day, and you might or might not have the surname “Smith”.
                You can help build a great bridge, and you might or might not get a commemorative plaque.

                But you fuck ONE goat, and you never hear the end of it.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Now you mention it, I was tempted to ask whether you’ve considered setting up a new practice: Capill Garret and Sabin has such a nice ring to it.

                However, I’m too preoccupied absorbing your dalliance with truth to be mean. Hope springs eternal, after all.

              • Pascals bookie

                The baby thing is old news, though still pretty hilarious of course. I mean what sort of a man, etc.

                These days people laugh at you for being such a bedwetter about Islam. So you ‘grew up’ and turned into a huge coward. Well done.

              • miravox

                Getting it in there first David… that’s funny.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1.1.2.2

            David Garrett made a public statement and it was true! What next? Unicorns?

          • weka 4.1.1.2.3

            What was wrong with Waring’s politics as a young woman?

  5. shorts 5

    I don’t see his age as being a barrier to being a good and effective MP – let’s not judge him because he is young thats simply not acceptable (refer to ‘isms)

    Nor should he be able to use his age as an excuse

    He’s just another arrogant Nat… so nothing new or surprising there

    • vto 5.1

      Disagree shorts. It is well proven since manwoman first became menwomen that age provides all sorts of benefits, such as wisdom, judgment, experience that can be brought to bear on life and decisions required therein.

      Many of these things do not arise in the young simply because they have not seen or heard or experienced.

      His young age is without doubt a factor for consideration. A big factor. The same factor that prevents young people voting in fact. Let’s open up voting to all people of all ages….. doh

    • weka 5.2

      I agree shorts, age in and of itself isn’t the issue. It’s his inexperience and probably arrogance that will be creating problems, as well as the mindset, sense of entitlement, and neoliberal ideologies etc. Clutha Southland is a conservative electorate, not a neoliberal one.

      • vto 5.2.1

        the inexperience you refer to is a result of his age in these circumstances

        • weka 5.2.1.1

          I’m not talking about political inexperience, I’m talking about being inexperienced with social intelligence. Plenty of people younger than him who do better.

          • vto 5.2.1.1.1

            still a result of his age

            ageism is actually working in reverse here by discounting the benefits that age brings and saying it has no relevance

            • weka 5.2.1.1.1.1

              How is it to do with age when others his age have social intelligence?

              Of course age brings experience and maturity (I’ve been making that argument elsewhere in terms of voting age). But that doesn’t mean that a 23 year old can’t be a good politician. Age can bring problems, like being more conservative, or being out of touch as one gets older, but that is just as much a product of society and how people are positioned via age.

              Ageism is where one assumes that x individual is senile at 80 because some others are, where one makes the assumption that all 80 year olds are inherently like this. Ditto youth. Ageism is where one assumes that no 23 year old can be a good politician because this one can’t.

              Now, if you can demonstrate the it’s unrealistic to expect any 23 yr old to function well as a politician, you might have a point, but I think you will be hard pressed to do that with back up.

              • vto

                Of course so could a 16 year old function as an MP. An exceptional 16 year old. But the average 16 year old? No way. Same with 23, just a bit further up the spectrum..

                It is a statistics thing weka, not an ‘exceptional’ thing.

                Statistically insignificant.

                The incident is highlighting the statistical insignificance of Todd Barclay…

                • weka

                  So at what age does one, statistically, become able to be a competent MP?

                  There is a huge difference between 16 and 23, in terms of brain development as well as social development. Your argument fails with that example.

                  • vto

                    You would have to check the statistics.

                    There is a reason why community leaders are most often referred to as “elders” – ignore at your peril.

                    This aint nothing new…

                    …except for the youth of many try-hard ‘leaders’ today, but I think that is a result of the rampancy of youth culture today and its associated arrogance.

                    • weka

                      “You would have to check the statistics.”

                      No, you would. You’re the one making an ageist argument. Others have pointed out that 23 yr olds do other complex management tasks competently, so I think you are just arguing from your own prejudice.

                      Of course older people have more experience. No-one is denying that. Please don’t imply that I’m not aware, esp as I have already stated what I think.

                      No-one is suggesting that elders should be ignore. Might be good to stop making shit up or taking it personally or whatever it is that you are doing.

                    • vto

                      “whatever it is that you are doing”

                      you are funny to read sometime weka – you pull things apart so much sometimes that the point just flies off in another direction to that which you are looking while fiddling

                • shorts

                  He doesn’t operate alone, he has fellow party members, colleagues and MPs who one would think help him become the MP they want him to be – older, wiser and experienced people… mentoring and training him

                  He’s surely not just gifted the seat and then left to his own devices?

                  • Lanthanide

                    He did have colleagues, older wider and experienced people mentoring and training him.

                    3 of them have now resigned.

                • McFlock

                  And yet several multi-million dollar students’ associations have been competently run by people even younger. Some people better than others, but Barclay-level paranoia, arrogance and incompetence has been quite rare.

                  Funnily enough, the occasional examples that spring to mind (sorry, no names allowed) were all tories…

                  • vto

                    Yes I think it is an arrogance issue..

                    and per above – community leaders pretty much the entire world and history over have been the “elders”….
                    … you know, referencing age. Because age provides so very much that is beneficial to society.

                    It is only our current society which seems to rate youth higher than it ever has been, for purposes other than being youthful..

                    I think history gets to play the trump card on this issue.

                    • McFlock

                      I think you’re confusing “inexperience” with “shit that nobody should really have to be told, regardless of age”.

                      A small procedural cockup is one thing.
                      Managing to alienate three key staff members so quickly is a unique talent, even for somone in their early twenties.

                      Most young adults placed in positions of responsibility learn the ropes okay. A few, however, will not learn from anyone else, and those people are likely to be fuckwits well into their dotage.

                    • weka

                      “I think history gets to play the trump card on this issue.”

                      No, it really doesn’t. Traditional societies teach people how to lead from a young age. This doesn’t mean put all young people in charge. It means if you want to have competent leaders and a healthy culture you have to train people to do that. No-one is suggesting that a 23 yr old should be in charge, or that 23 yr olds should run society. You are conflating things.

                    • vto

                      I am not conflating anything weka, but you are teasing things out to the point of threadbare uselessness. I am merely pointing out that leaders of communities have traditionally been the “elders”. Not the “youngers”. There is a very substantial “age” component, which you and others are trying to minimise below its historically established level.

                      History nearly always plays the trump card, and here where the issue is leadership of societies, and societies have “elders” as their leaders, the trump would seem to have been played. Is there a card higher than the joker?

                      Oh, and your points about traditional societies and training are yours. Not sure why you brought those up but good luck to you.

                    • weka

                      Barclay isn’t a leader. He’s an MP, a junior one. That’s one thing you are conflating.

                      You still haven’t said at what age someone becomes competent to be an MP, but I’ll take it now to be over 50 seeing as how you are arguing that only older people can be leaders and you seem to be implying that all MPs should be leaders.

                      Traditional societies teach young people how to lead. It’s not reserved for older people only, although older people obviously have been in positions of more responsibility. You can write that off as my views, but if it came down to it, I could back it up. I doubt you could back up yours.

                      I’m getting sick of the people on ts who think that their ideas are the debate. You’ve put up some ideas, multiple people have challenged them, and all you are doing is repeating your position without addressing what others have brought up. It’s boring, and in this case, it’s factually incorrect.

                    • McFlock

                      societies have “elders” as their leaders

                      Well, no, not all.

                      Many societies have advisory councils or advisors to their leaders, from the anglo-saxon witan through to privy councillors, tribal leader advisors, or even a crime consigliere, but age has rarely been the defining criteria (often more based on respect and trustworthiness or a position of power).

                      Age and experience almost never translate to being leaders of the society. Wealth, power, heredity, fair call. Age by itself? nah.

                    • vto

                      sure weka, the only problem is that if everybody went about things the same way as you then the world would be full of wekas

                  • Sabine

                    but these people may have had to put real work into getting to where they are, while this young one seems to have come his ‘vocation’ due to his lobbying for tobacco first and his national party affiliation second.

                    nothing to do with hard work, and or working with others.

                    Age is an indicator of things like maturity and so on, but they are not a guarantor that people have maturity and so on.

                    There are a lot of very accomplished young people (some even younger that this fellow) and then there are a lot of older people that are very silly (see the upset Sir of Victoria University )

                    No this kid is useless because his employment depended on his ‘potential’ not his ‘accomplishments’. That at some stage the worker bee’s decide to call it quits is a natural occurrence that many of us have experienced in corporate offices were real experience and maturity were replaced with young potential. Leaving to devastating results.

  6. Rosie 6

    Thanks r0b for the summary of the developing problems in Clutha Southland. The kid has made a number of boo boo’s are consistent with being a Dirty Politics candidate. It surely can’t be put down to age related/newbie ignorance.

    His idea to release Barbara Swann’s resignation letter for instance. Did he feel a bit threatened by the publicity of the resignations and decide that making a letter public would somehow cast him a better light? ” Look, I’m a victim! “. And IF he did make a recording during a meeting without the knowledge of Glenys Dickson then she may have grounds to take a personal grievance case against him. I hope she is looking into it.

    • BM 6.1

      You never made any mistakes when you were younger?
      Never looked back and thought, “Gee that was a bit unwise, what was I thinking!”.

      • Lanthanide 6.1.1

        I see him as a victim of the National Party machine that was stupid enough to put someone clearly not up to the job, in the job.

        • BM 6.1.1.1

          I don’t think he’s handled this very well and he will no doubt have learnt from it.

          To me it looks like a bunch of oldies struggling to deal with a much younger boss, probably treating him like the boy and not doing what they were told.

          • weka 6.1.1.1.1

            Which might be a useful position to take on other situations*, but I doubt it’s going to work in an electorate office. Who makes sure MPs win? You think it’s a young MP? Or the oldies that know the community and how everything works?

            *if you don’t care about people and are in a position for that not to matter.

          • BLiP 6.1.1.1.2

            Oh, right. Its the workers’ fault. Righty-ho. All solved then.

          • North 6.1.1.1.3

            “……..and not doing what they were told.”

            Love it BM, Love it !

      • Rosie 6.1.2

        Sure I made mistakes but I wasn’t in charge of an electorate when I was his age.

        He’s already worked in Parliamentary services so he would know a bit about protocols and procedures. He should by now, basically know right from wrong.

      • Nic the NZer 6.1.3

        Are you suggesting employment laws should only apply to employers older than 23? If he doesnt get punished for violations of employment relations why do you think he has learned anything from the experience?

        • BM 6.1.3.1

          Not at all.

          Best way people learn is to experience the consequences of their actions.

          No doubt there’s some background arse chewing going on as well.

          • Nic the NZer 6.1.3.1.1

            Well good because 6.1.1.1 looked a lot like you were blaming the victums of his errors for his actions.

            • BM 6.1.3.1.1.1

              I was just speculating on why this situation may have arose.

              • Sabine

                no you were accusing a much older workforce of refusing to do as they were told, all the while giving him the ‘he did not handle it well, and will learn from it.

                Here is your comment BM : I don’t think he’s handled this very well and he will no doubt have learnt from it.

                To me it looks like a bunch of oldies struggling to deal with a much younger boss, probably treating him like the boy and not doing what they were told.

                —————————————————————————————————–

                Maybe he behaved like a boy and they are just tired of wiping his arse and change his diapers?

              • North

                Yeah yeah fine Bowel, speculating and all that. My speculation is he’s an insufferable wee master of the universe whose gonads at age 24 leave him with little patience for wiser counsel and he is a master of the universe and he will be telling everybody to fuck off because we all know why. “Yeah, my daddies…..John and Bill……me personify.”

                “Don’t talk when I’m talking !”

                Bad call wee puppy !

  7. So he acts like a young arrogant inexperienced dork.

    That adds a richness to their caucus and presents a new dimension. I mean they’ve already got plenty of old arrogant experienced dorks.

  8. katipo 8

    Creative writing scenario for the beltway:
    “Ria Bond wins Southland By-election”…

  9. mac1 9

    John Key’s words to a reporter are very revealing when examined closely.

    “He’s a young man”. That means he’s inexperienced, and getting it wrong.

    “I think he’s doing a good job.” That means he’s doing a poor job but since I can’t say that out in the media, I will qualify what I say with an “I think”. That gives me wriggle room.

    “It’s always hard etc”. That means he’s stuffing up.

    “He’s a young guy.” Let’s reiterate the inexperience and offer that as an excuse for his stuffing up.

    “He’s on a steep learning curve.” That means he has a hell of a lot to learn, and he’s going to learn a hell of a lot more when the Whips and my staff have had a talk with him.

    “Im sure he’s going to a great job.” Well, he’s not doing that now.

    “Not entirely unusual” is a typical Keyism, convoluted and easy to brush over because it’s not easy to work out what he’s saying, with this double negative. Certainly, there’s no real indication of how often Key believes that staff change with a new MP. Try and quantify “not entirely unusual.”

    He then says he has no details, but he’s had a chat to Bill English. No indication as to what that means.

    The “I know nothing”, even after the wee chat with Bill, gives Key distance between what Barclay’s doing and Key’s responsibility. Key can pronounce with his excuse making, young man fresh to the job routine, but if it comes to the shove, he ‘knows nothing’ and remains teflon clean.

    I don’t believe the extent of the truth any of Key’s statements. They are flim flam. A good reporter should be digging below this layer of obfuscation.

    • Rosie 9.1

      A good translation of Key speak mac1

    • cogito 9.2

      @mac1

      Great translation!

      ” A good reporter should be digging below this layer of obfuscation.” Trying to think of one who is not in the Nats’ pockets…. not easy!

      Hopefully another good opportunity for Winston to capitalise on a Nat stuff-up like he did in Northland. Go Winston.

    • Lanthanide 9.3

      “Try and quantify “not entirely unusual.””

      It actually means it’s *mostly unusual*.

    • Barclay was on Morning Report this morning and if he said ‘steep learning curve’ once he said it half a dozen times.

      It was part of a pat meme he was obviously told to repeat endlessly in response to any and all questions.

      John Key is simply chiming in with the approved response by the looks of it.

      That’s why both Barclay’s interview and Key’s comments are virtually without content – but they pulse with the inference that there’s nothing to see here.

      • Corokia 9.4.1

        When asked about secret recordings on Morning Report Barclay said indignantly that he wouldn’t dignify that question with a response. That sounded like a very arrogant person who considered themselves above scrutiny and IF it turns out he did secretly record someone then he deserves serious consequences for doing that and for being so up himself in the interview

        • weka 9.4.1.1

          I’m guessing there is no evidence otherwise they’d be being more careful. Otoh, idiocy.

  10. weka 10

    “Seems Barclay may not make it to the next election.”

    How would that happen? He’d have to resign wouldn’t he?

  11. Mosa 11

    Here we go again another Nat mp in trouble
    As soon as the story broke Key as usual says ‘NOTHING TO SEE HERE’
    Which means there is a problem and the well rehearsed cover up action plan is implemented
    MSM Wont ask the hard questions and this story has been out for a few days

  12. Ovid 12

    With Bill English rumoured to be retiring in 2017, Barclay will lose a mentor in the electorate’s issues too.

    • Lanthanide 12.1

      Why? He’d be retiring as an MP and minister from Parliament. If anything he’d have a lot more free time available to mentor an MP in his electorate, especially if he actually went back there to live.

    • Mosa 12.2

      I am sure Todd has John and Bill’s number

  13. Heather Grimwood 13

    I’m sure that if media are dragging chain here, there will be many who attended the pre-election ‘ meet the candidates’ event in Tahakopa Hall who might be able to fill in Key’s lack of knowledge.
    They will remember Barclay’s arrogance in shouting that no-one was to speak when he was on his feet, and general dismal performance. Response was reminiscent of old-time political meetings, and Barclay was whisked away by his minders before any chance of interaction at conclusion.

    • weka 13.1

      thanks for that story Heather. There’s something bloody interesting in seeing the meeting point of neoliberal and old time conservative. I doubt that Southlanders will take this lying down and Key’s smile and wave shit might not actually manage to cover up the arrogance and disrespect.

      • Heather Grimwood 13.1.1

        To Weka: Thanks.My impression of this well-attended meeting was that attendees really knew their political oats and it will remain for me a most unexpected but rewarding experience. I suggest that your ‘conservative’ could describe a wholesome ability to assess advertising in its widest sense and ability to sort out what really are the best things in life.

        • weka 13.1.1.1

          That part of Otago strikes me as being part of old NZ rather than the newer rural NZ. More rugged, a bit wilder, values are conservative but that encompasses much of the good in the old values. I haven’t been there for a few years though.

          Was the Tahakopa Valley the one where farms got bought up for eucalypt forest in the 90s and they watched their community disintegrate as families moved away and schools closed? I think those kind of places have withstood hard times and survived differently that many other more urbanised places.

          • cogito 13.1.1.1.1

            ” values are conservative but that encompasses much of the good in the old values.”

            There’s plenty of good in the South. I love the deep south, the weather, the traditions, the scenery. Can’t beat it….! Long may it stay that way….

      • Mosa 13.1.2

        If National put up a chimp in a suit they would vote for it
        The rest of the country has 3 times

    • Rachael Goldsmith 13.2

      That was a truly fabulous meeting in so many ways. The town hall meeting I’ll never forget. Then there were the other meetings, which mummy, daddy, sister & sisters boyfriend all showed up to. The only reason he lost it in Tahakopa was because they weren’t there to stand up and yell hey, don’t speak to him like that/don’t interrupt him/don’t be so rude to my son/brother/in law. How embarrassing. The rest of us candidates sat there looking at each other going wow, this will end in tears. He’s a nice young chap but a future success story – I doubt it.

  14. ianmac 14

    “It’s been a huge learning curve and a lot of change in a short space of time.”

    Mr Barclay, 25, said he was focused on doing his job and representing Clutha-Southland.

    “We’ve got over 60,000 people in this electorate and I’ve got to do my best to be seen as a credible, accessible voice by every single one of those people.”

    Pure deflection as practised endlessly by Key?
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11601964

  15. Michael 15

    I’d like to know why the, reportedly, more popular candidate dropped out before the Nats selected barclay. Did Stephen Lusk have anything to do with it, as he did with other candidate selections? I think we should be told.

    • weka 15.1

      The offical story was family reasons? I’m not sure they’re going to care about this coming from a left wing blog commentariat 😉 but there is still somethign odd about Barclay’s appointment that hasn’t been fully explained. Of course it could just be idiocy and mismanagement.

      • Gabby 15.1.1

        I just assumed it was some sort of trade off for Party donations.

        • weka 15.1.1.1

          Could be. Also grooming a young man with not many ethics and the potential to use DP.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 15.1.2

        Never assume a conspiracy where idiocy and mismanagement will suffice. Wise words Weka.

        National MPs should have SNAFU tattooed on their foreheads in mirror writing as an hourly reminder.

  16. Mildred 16

    My guess is that Barclay won’t be here at next election.

    The guy doesn’t seem to realize he’s a constituent MP whose job is “to serve” his constituents. Instead he thinks he’s a government Minister & he acts like a Hollywood star – attending every social event & seeking every opportunity to be photographed with important people. 18 months in the job & he’s achieved nothing (that we are aware of) for the electorate. He should be grafting away behind the scenes – working hard to achieve results for his people across the political spectrum within his electorate. This is how he would build trust and confidence.

    His actions clearly lack class, good values, discretion, integrity & sound judgement & they are unbecoming of an MP eg, slagging off John Campbell on social media, and breaching people’s confidentialities and privacy to advance his own position, such as releasing employment letters & making secret recordings.

    How could constituents ever trust him now their private information, or anything else? His behavior does not command respect.

    This is not an age matter – as Barclay himself claims. It’s about respect for others, having sound values, integrity, good manners and exercising sound judgement. By the age of 25 these things are inherent. Barclay won’t learn these things ‘on the job’. He either has them or he doesn’t.

    This is not about Bill English being a hard act for Barclay to follow. It’s about Barclays failure to be made of the right stuff. I expect the 3 people who resigned have done so in utter frustration & disappointment with Barclay.

    The people of Clutha Southland deserve much better.

    • weka 16.1

      very good summation. Interesting that National nationally don’t appear too worried about the electorate MP angle.

      • cowboy 16.1.1

        Yes, well summed up Mildred.

        That’s also been my impression of Barclay’s tenure to date. That he has thought that having many photo ops with significant individuals would impress the locals. His issue is that 18mths in its hard to recall him having publically advocated for anything that is not core govt policy. For example I heard him quoted on RNZ about 6 mths ago as not being prepared to comment on TVNZ downsizing their Dunedin newsroom, citing it being an”operational issue”. What complete bollocks! It was a gift wrapt opportunity for him to be seen to be agitating on behalf of his constituents, instead he kicked for touch lest he upset anyone on high and jeopardised a future cabinet role.

        I was a National party member at the time of his selection and I don’t think there was anything untoward. The late withdrawal was for reasons of a wife having second thoughts and there were a couple of others that were clearly not up to it. However there was one guy who was a school principal who seemed a really sound individual who was overlooked. I think Barclay just turned on the charm and managed to convince enough people he was an up and coming star in the making, the next Bill English. Unfortunately we may be finding out that it was all too soon.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1.1.1

          Unfortunately? Some right wing crooks are fighting – sounds like a win for New Zealand.

        • Mildred 16.1.1.2

          Who was the teacher? Is anyone going to challenge his selection?

          I hadn’t thought about TVNZ and his failure to advocate for local tv representation. This is a good point. I thought the “operational issue” excuse could only be used by a Minister – not a local MP advocating for better local services. Isn’t that the whole point of a state owned tv service/channel – to ensure the whole country is represented – not just the Wellington & Auckland view of the world.

          Where’s is he on the lack of affordable accommodation in Question, or the road congestion in Queenstown, and what is he doing about getting funding to improve traffics/roads around Queenstown airport? It’s all very well growing the economy via tourism, but you need the infrastructure to cope. Queenstown isn’t coping. Roads around Queenstown have to be roads of national significance given its NZ’s top tourism destination. Barclay should be bending the PM’s ear, as Minister of Tourism, about the need for extra funding for roads in Queenstown.

          He clearly has no back bone and is simply a yes man.

          I heard the Radio New Zealand interview which implied a police complaint had been laid over his recording. If that is the case, then Barclay clearly could NOT have been a party to the conversation – which means his actions were illegal. What an idiot.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1.1.2.1

            Whether he’s an idiot or not very much depends upon the circumstances – what if people were discussing how to divide a big bag full of cash from Cabinet Club, and exactly what was expected of the recipients?

            Is the National Party negotiating for a bigger cut from the methamphetamine trade? Or Phillip Morris told him to get some dirt they could use for blackmail attempts?

            I suppose it’s far more likely he’s stupid and arrogant and pisses people off. Nice one, selectors! 😆

            Fight you bastards.

          • Cowboy 16.1.1.2.2

            Mildred, the principal was from Edendale I think and was a Nats stalwart, electorate chair for Invercargill from memory. My info is that the mooted Challenge could be from the guy who pulled out at the last minute. He was some high flying merchant banker who had returned from Singapore to seek the nomination, so it could be out of frying pan into fire!

            • Graeme 16.1.1.2.2.1

              Simon Flood has owned property near Queenstown for a long time and has a house here. I’ve no idea where he sits on the political spectrum, but he strikes me as someone who does, and expects, things done properly, is very easy to talk to and cares about people. He doesn’t strike me as someone who’d go into something and pull out at the last minute.

              As an aside, it was the AGM of the Queenstown branch of the Nat party last night, would have been interesting…

              • cowboy

                Graeme, yes that is the guy I am referring to. I have never come across him so will take your word on his character. I guess the back story of an international fund manager returning home to seek a safe electorate seat elicits raised eyebrows in conservative Southland. The story goes it was a marital issue in regard his wife having second thoughts. It is a big and demanding electorate so it would be a tough gig on the family.

                Yes the rural branches are having AGMs as well so it will be fascinating to hear how they go. Let us know if you hear any feedback.

                • Graeme

                  Where he’s been, he wouldn’t be going in to sit on the back bench. My impression is that he’d run rings around most of the current cabinet.

                  • Cowboy

                    We require someone who in the first instance aims at being a bloody good constituency MP. Todd doesn’t want to sit on the backbench either which is half his problem.

                    • Graeme

                      Also the electorate has become accustomed to very high calibre electorate MPs. The Southland side has had Bill for ever, and top ranked MPs before that. In Queenstown there was Warren Cooper and David Parker, then a short interlude with Jackie Dean who din’t get a lot of respect in some quarters, then Bill snaffled the Wakatipu to keep the electorate rural and blue.

                      Trouble is that there are huge cultural and moral differences between the two parts of the electorate, and in Queenstown between various sectors of the community. What can be seen as “normal” by some people is an anathema to many others.

    • cogito 16.2

      @mildred

      “It’s about respect for others, having sound values, integrity, good manners and exercising sound judgement.”

      the lack of…. a case of like master, like servant.

  17. I am surprised when the experiences of life see people on a political board needing to ask who Ria Bond is (after all the publicity she had) and have not bumped into ‘fag’ as in the public school context.

    • cogito 17.1

      LOL.

      Yes, Ria Bond certainly had a fair bit of publicity and can hopefully consolidate her support.

      Southland should be increasingly fertile ground for NZF.

    • weka 17.2

      On reflection I’d say we (here) don’t talk much about NZF outside of Peters.

      • cogito 17.2.1

        True….

        Ria Bond came into Parliament as a result of Winston thumping the Nats in the Northland by-election. That’s why she was talked about….

        • weka 17.2.1.1

          thanks for the reminder. Makes sense now about NZF taking notice of what Barclay is doing.

          Lots of MPs in parliament whose names I wouldn’t remember 😉

  18. maui 18

    Trouble at the top and now at the bottom of the shaky isles, gradually moving towards the centre. Just like the world economy, the extremities like Greece falling apart first, NZ waiting in the queue.

  19. Young, entitled, white male, never once chopped down to size put in charge of a group of seasoned National operators. What could possibly go wrong?

  20. Young, entitled, white male, never once chopped down to size put in charge of a group of seasoned National operators. What could possibly go wrong?

    • mac1 20.1

      It could be repeated?

    • Sacha 20.2

      It could be repeated!

    • weka 20.3

      Good point worth saying twice.

      • vto 20.3.1

        weka, you said age is immaterial yet here you are agreeing with a fine piece of aged bigotry.. maybe it is the white and male bigoted aspects which get you, as they always do .. they’re fine those ones eh … get the white males,, especially the old ones,, yet there the young ones too,,, just get the lot of them,,, mount your trusty steed,, charge!!

        • weka 20.3.1.1

          where did I say that age is immaterial? I’m pretty sure that in the conversation you are alluding too I wasn’t saying age is immaterial, in fact I acknowledged where age was important. But I was saying something else which you have failed to grasp, just like you fail to grasp what ageism actually is (and every other oppression on the planet that isn’t about being a dudebro).

          Anyway, arohamai for being this mean but I’m sick of people harassing me without being able to formulate an actual argument. I’m also sick of some people intentionally misrepresenting my politics because of their own inadequacies, so put this in your pipe and smoke it,

          http://www.whydontwehaveaninternationalmensday.com/

          • vto 20.3.1.1.1

            sure thing weka

            right back at ya

            out with your slippery bigotries

            maybe you should reflect on what people are trying to tell you all these times – if you are sick of it that is

            • weka 20.3.1.1.1.1

              Like I said, you can’t or won’t formulate an argument, all you can do is make out there is something wrong with me. I have reflected on what people are trying to tell me, I do that all the time. I think they are telling me that they don’t like what I am saying. I appreciate that in fact, because from those conversations understanding and bridge building can happen. But only if the person can make an actual case for their own beliefs. If they instead resort to the kind of smeary shit you are doing, while it’s an understandable, human reaction to frustration it doesn’t help the conversation and it’s not my responsibility to fix.

              I get that you have strong feelings about how white men are viewed and talked about, esp older ones. I’m guessing that some of that is personal (you being old, white, male). None of that I have a problem with. I do have a problem with you not being able to explain your politics on a political forum. And I do have a problem with you distorting my politics.

              You can call me a bigot all you like, but until you can demonstrate how I am a bigot, and because this is a political forum put that how in a political context, then your assertions are meaningless beyond your own personal feelings (and I really can’t help you with that).

              • vto

                you can’t see the wood for the trees weka, and I have said this to you on many occasions. You dissect and pull apart statements to such an extent that they become meaningless – or rather, you are unable to see the point because it is now in countless small parts.

                Re the bigotry – check just above and your agreement with travellerev that this is due to various irrelevant characteristics. Characteristics that you yourself claim are irrelevant to various issues, including in this one further above.

                Just admit it weka, you don’t like men, you don’t like white men especially, and even more so old white men…. oh yes, I know, you have said your dad is an old white man, as if that somehow provides some qualification…. and some of my best friends are maori lol… I think that sums up your failings

                you seriously need to open your eyes and ears

  21. Dorothy Bulling 21

    Last election Todd Barclay was being ‘minded’ by Jamie Lee Ross during his campaign around the south. Met them in Te Anau when I was having a meeting with Dr Liz Craig. She would be a great MP. Those 2 boys looked like vacuum cleaner salesmen and acted like schoolboys wagging school. A pair of smug idiots and far too young and brash for anything much at all.

    • repateet 21.1

      Looked after by Jami Lee Ross? Jeez, that’s like getting a four year old in to babysit an 18 month old!

    • Matthew Hooton 21.2

      Marilyn Waring and Simon Upton were first elected to parliament aged 23 and both made major contributions to New Zealand politics by their early 30s so I don’t think younger MPs are necessarily unable to be effective.

      • Gristle 21.2.1

        This has been canvassed way back earlier and nobody is disagreeing with the principle, only the application.

      • Ad 21.2.2

        Mr Barclay is not currently fit to tie the boots of either Upton or Waring.

        • North 21.2.2.1

          Mr Barclay is a punk, a punk I say ! So what let the Notional Party do this ? Could it be that the Notional Party is a punk ? Tending to very unattractive, dully oblivious to what-it-means, boy-racer in the governance of a nation ? It must end in tears !

  22. Tautoko Mangō Mata 22

    Part of the problem is the lack of decent role models on that side of the house. Integrity, principles, respect for the position, awareness of serving in the best interests of the public, humility, sincerity and honesty are qualities that are few and far between. I cannot think of one single Nat MP that I can really respect, disregarding the obvious differences in political views. There have been several in the past.

    • Whateva next? 22.1

      Aye to that!

    • Sabine 22.2

      this is very true.

    • North 22.3

      Yeah……I can remember several National Party people I had real respect for, Ralph Hanan, Peter Gordon, if memory serves MP for Clutha, Minister of Transport. Venn Young. Even old Sir Leslie Munro, your classic upper-crust Tory lawyer but still some morals, MP for Waipa, forerunner of Raglan and Waring.

      The present complement (acknowledging that the fish rots from the head down)…….a bunch of glossy well off/rich (so fu’k’n’ what anyway?) – nothings, redolent of coiffed, Republican registered, US midwest, ‘realtors’. A very sick crew ! But then of course the fish rots……and I do believe that John Key plays with his hair……which says it all.

      OK OK, his own hair, not someone else’s……algud algud.

  23. Tautoko Mangō Mata 23

    IMHO age is irrelevant, it is personal qualities and attitude that count. Sure experience can help too, so neither the young nor the elderly should be written off.
    Here is an example of youth showing the way!

    A large turnout is expected at a federal court in Eugene, Oregon on Wednesday where a judge will decide on whether or not to dismiss a landmark lawsuit brought by a group of 21 youths, along with noted climate scientist James Hansen, who charge that the federal government and fossil fuel industry have violated their constitutional rights.

    The case is necessary, stated 19-year-old Kelsey Juliana, the youth plaintiff for whom the case is named, because “[g]overnmental inaction on climate is no longer an option.”

    http://www.commondreams.org/news/2016/03/09/all-eyes-oregon-courtroom-where-its-small-children-vs-big-oil

  24. vto 24

    So Todd Barclay at age 23 is part of a government that does not think it appropriate to have people aged under 25 eligible for adoption..

    There is that age thing again….

    how does that work?

    he thinks his age is not an issue in being qualified to decide about adoption, yet that decision is that age is an issue in being qualified for adoption

    … go figure ….

  25. Pascals bookie 25

    saw in the papaer this morning the the police are interviewing some of the people who have left the employ of this chap’s National Party electorate offices. Just taking statements, that sort of thing, as they do.

    Is this usual when a longstanding MP gets replaced and a new one comes in with the turnover and the learning curves and what not?

    • Owen 25.2

      I find it intriguing that the Police had called to arrange the meeting with the Queenstown secretary, only for that meeting to then be delayed by Police, without explanation?

      I wonder if the fact that Todd Barclay is best mates with the Minister of Police – Judith Collins (I.e., holidaying and socialising together) has anything to do with this change of direction? After all Collins does have a track record as a Minister for directi g & interfering in operational decisions. Possibly Collins is instructing Commissioner Bush how the complaint about Todd should be handled.

  26. cowboy 26

    Wow, the cover up appears to unravelling.

    He is really under the pump down here. Dead man walking?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/opinion/77648822/even-safe-seats-can-be-highmaintenance

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