Seemingly all political commenters and not just those of the right, are now condemning Jacinda Ardern as an absentee Prime Minister, hiding behind her Ministers when major issues arise. It’s probably a fair cop.

But here’s another perspective; does it matter?

The thing about Jacinda is she’s genuinely nice without a mean bone in her body. I suspect the public sense this and warm to her; her presence making them feel good and if so, politics aside, that’s a good thing. What’s important is that in the shadows at least one Senior Minister is holding the reins. That’s doubtless occurring, probably with Finance Minister Grant Robertson filling that key role.


Jim Callaghan, Britain’s Labour Prime Minister in the late 1970s told a great story which I read about last week.

In the early Thatcher years he received a telephone call from a zealous young woman, campaigning on behalf of Labour.

“Can we expect your vote?” she asked.

“Oh definitely”, Jim replied.

Encouraged by this, she asked whether he’d be prepared to become more deeply involved with the Party.

“Well,” Jim said, “I was Prime Minister last year”.


We’re being hammered about our wicked ways with plastic, dairy farming, cars etc, the latest fashionable sin being our evilness in flying in jet planes.

Last week, the current whipping boy for some British newspapers, namely Prince Harry plus his wife Meaghan, were given a roasting for a short trip in Elton John’s jet as his guests for a stay with him. So why don’t they hammer Elton John and the hundreds of others owning private jets.

Well get this.


Noted satirist, the late Auberon Waugh (Bron), son of the great Evelyn, was a renown wine buff and bullshit detector.

Back in the 1980s he published Waugh On Wine which has just last month been reprinted, it consisted of his various wine reviews going back to the 1970s.

He once found himself in big trouble with British midwives and was accused of inciting racial hatred by the idiotic Race Relations Board, although these propositions were rightly rubbished by the Press Council.


Prime Minister Jacinda Arden, commenting on petrol prices, said, “Our instinct was certainly that New Zealanders were being fleeced at the pump, now the Commerce Commission has confirmed that is true.”

Jacinda and her colleagues had no such instinct. Instinct is unlearned behaviour universal to every member of a species. Humans have only one instinct and that is when babies, to suckle.

What Jacinda should have said and indeed plainly meant, was her “intuition”.