In which I endorse Cactus Kate’s ACT candidacy

datePosted on 20:56, June 25th, 2011 by Lew

I’ve just gone through my post archive and added the tag ‘open government’ to posts I’ve written on the topic of elected or senior civil society representatives telling their constituents what they really think. I think this sort of disclosure is essential to democratic politics, and as much as I might disagree with the sentiments many such representatives express, my gratitude to them for their candour is entirely genuine.

It is in this vein that I endorse the rumoured candidacy of Cathy Odgers, aka Cactus Kate, for the ACT party in the forthcoming general election. If true, Odgers will be doing Aotearoa a genuine service, showing us all what ACT really stands for. She has never been backwards about coming forwards, and her often outrageous opinions have routinely appeared on her blog. Consequently, we can be assured of what we’re getting.

What we’re getting is someone who represents the elites; those who, if they weren’t born in possession of a silver spoon, quickly set about acquiring one by any means necessary. Hers is a devil-take-the-hindmost sort of social Darwinism which evinces general scorn for ordinary people, and outright contempt for anyone who fails to succeed by her own materialistic standards. She is perfectly frank about her view that only the wealthy net taxpayers should be able to vote, that ‘DPB’ should stand for ‘don’t pay breeders‘, and a host of other repugnant views which should further alienate her and her party from the New Zealand electorate; and which should increase the risk to a second-term Key government if it chooses to associate itself with the new ACT. We can only hope she will remain as candid as a candidate.

But this endorsement isn’t all about foreshadowed electoral schadenfreude. Odgers, for all that I disagree with nearly every aspect of her politics, is intelligent, articulate and possessed of a sharp and analytical wit. By reputation she is driven, hard-working and will not tolerate time-wasters or time-servers. If her boasts about the expat lifestyle and her drinking habits are to be believed, she will be taking a considerable cut in pay and increase in workload if elected to parliament, so we might reasonably assume her intentions are genuine. In other words, aside from her politics — which is admittedly a very big aside — she’s just the sort of person we need more of in Parliament. It may be that the rigours of public office mellow her, or it may be that her prickly public persona hides one more rounded and reasoned. They often do.

L

6 Responses to “In which I endorse Cactus Kate’s ACT candidacy”

  1. Cactus Kate MP | Kiwiblog on June 25th, 2011 at 22:04

    [...] realise that every journalist in NZ has probably already read them all.But at Kiwipolitico, Lew endorses Kate’s candidacy:It is in this vein that I endorse the rumoured candidacy of Cathy Odgers, aka Cactus Kate, for the [...]

  2. Gaeme Edgeler on June 25th, 2011 at 23:19

    Cactus does not believe that only the wealthy should be able to vote. Work part-time on minimum wage cleaning offices and support yourself, and Cactus thinks you should get to vote.

  3. Lew on June 26th, 2011 at 00:35

    Thanks Graeme. Conflicting evidence on that, depends which utterance you believe. This one, for example, specifies the franchise for those over 25 or who earn more than $60,000; and there are others.

    But the one I’ve linked to in the post is about net taxpayers, so I’ve edited to reflect that.

    L

  4. ak on June 26th, 2011 at 01:20

    Isn’t she lovely. The ineffable NACT accessory.

  5. Pablo on June 26th, 2011 at 15:34

    I have to agree with Lew–you might as well have the real deal in Parliament rather than poseurs placating a particular constituency (and that goes for all sides). OTOH, if it is true that democratic politics is the art of compromise, then Cathy is in for a very rude awakening, starting within her own party given the presence in it of social conservatives who may not agree with her more, uh, “open” approach to interpersonal relationships and the issue of personal responsibility.

  6. Mike Johnson on June 27th, 2011 at 15:24

    Cathy is in for a very rude awakening, starting within her own party given the presence in it of social conservatives who may not agree with her more, uh, “open” approach to interpersonal relationships and the issue of personal responsibility.

    There just might be one or two folk in Act who actually support the sanctity of marriage and that commandment about not coveting thy neighbour’s husband.

    Her candidacy is likely to send more than a couple of high profile cuckolded wives Jonathan Marshall’s way…

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