Friday, August 25, 2006

RIP: Peter Dunne (1954-2006)

Peter Dunne was a pragmatic and decent guy. Always a little pompous, fronting a one-man party for so many years, if you could look past the preposterous things he would do with his hair, you knew he was generally moving in the right direction. He believed in the fundamentals of an open, prosperous economy. He supported the Reserve Bank Act, the Public Finance Act, the Fiscal Responsibility Act, and the principles of open government and clean democracy.

Economically, Dunne was always pretty dry. He left the Labour Party in 1994 because it become a little too dominated by pinkos and liberals, and was constantly apologizing for any of the works of Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble. When Dunne left Labour, it looked as if Labour would even rescind the key tenets of orthodox economics. Dunne couldn’t quite bring himself to join the National Party, but by 1996, for all intents and purposes, he was one of us.

Hence in 1996, National made him a Cabinet Minister, and chose not to stand a candidate against him in Ohariu-Belmont. Dunne won the seat in a landslide, and National pulled its second highest party vote in the country in that seat. This confirmed, he was one of us.

Peter Dunne being Peter Dunne, he spat the dummy in 1996 when Winston beat him to the chase for a ministerial seat. Dunne seethed and writhed and got very cranky. For many of us in the National Party who didn’t like Winston, we kinda agreed with him. He was still one of us.

Even in 1999, when Peter Dunne supported the Labour Government, many of us saw his point. Labour hadn’t changed back the clock of history between 1999-2002; it had acted reasonably competently, wasn’t by that stage accumulating massive surpluses or wasting too much money, and didn’t seem to be doing too much harm. Labour didn’t need Dunne’s support in 1999; if he could get a few baubles flung his way, then good on him. He was still almost one of us.

Peter Dunne was always somebody with principle and integrity. He strove to do what he thought was best. He was never lily-white, but as politicians go, he was a nice enough bloke. Sensible was his mantra. It was never a particularly sexy idea, but in a vacuum of political ideas, it won the worm in 2002. Fuming and blustering like a spoilt child when he didn’t get his way, he could be. But most of the time, reasonable.

In the annals of New Zealand political history, Peter Dunne’s chapter will not be very prominent. He was never a flash-in-the-pan; more of a slowly-simmering custard about to curdle if placed under too much heat. Worked well with something more substantial. Dependable, if cooked under the right conditions.

So it is, after twenty-two years of almost-distinguished parliamentary life, that we can stop and give thanks to the political career of Peter Dunne. Peter, wherever you are, buddy, you didn’t achieve much, but you meant well.

Because, dear reader, now that Peter Dunne has become just another lame apologist for Helen Clark’s corrupt and outlandish junta, he has gone full circle. He has tattooed himself to Helen Clark’s breast, always to be associated with her sleaze and contempt for the taxpayer. For a Labour Minister of Revenue, that would be dishonourable. To be propping up a disgraced Prime Minister who will do anything to retain power--even buy an election, and an ailing Finance Minister, is the ultimate act of self-immolation. In Peter Dunne, the one man who has staked his political career on his independence and ability to walk when things get a little too shabby, that is unforgiveable.

Rest in Peace, Peter Dunne. Your political career is over.

13 comments:

kyotolaw said...

Great stuff.

Wish you posted more...

Dave said...

Yeah I wish you posted more too.. because you are wrong. Sooooo wrong.

Dunne's career is not over. Nowhere near it. You have forgotten that he is also a constituent MP and has done well for his electorate over the past 22 years. He is one of the most honest MPs in parliament (yes, I know thats not hard,)Perhaps you should have discussed these matters you have blogged about wiht Dunne before posting stuff based on what you read in the media.

Anonymous said...

Is that right mediocre Dave?

Clearly your love for this loser clouds what Mr Dunce often refers to as common sense, or sensible.

My guess is that you probably are one of those who got fizzy at the bung last election, every time this twat said “commonsense, sensible, inclusive society, national pride etc.” …all good, and I bet you were also hoping that he’d also drop the line “I want world peace too…” that would have pushed you over the top huh?

Have you become as mediocre as the people you support, to the point where you now ignore what everyone else is saying (including ex Labour Prime Ministers), and excuse the latest wrought as just another misdemeanor? The thing is mediocre Dave, he sold out to Clark a long time ago, you just haven’t worked that out yet because you think as long as you preach integrity, you have some. The fact is, he now supports or will be supporting retrospective legislation so they can legally steal from the tax payer, and his demeanor on Larry Williams live when asked about his position on this said it all.

“He is one of the most honest MPs in parliament…”

Give me a break.


SeanJ

Insolent Prick said...

I assumed Dave was writing a piss-take, Sean: Dunne`s call for the Auditor-General to interview MPs on their illegal election spending is as silly as me interviewing Peter Dunne before I blog.

Cactus Kate said...

When I first saw the RIP I thought you meant Dr Cullen.

Got all excited there for a minute.

Anonymous said...

National needs to put a great candidate up against the tool. Punish him and bury his poodle party once and for all.

If Don wants to reinforce his position, he should go head to head against dunnyboy.

In the same vein, NZF is going down the toilet too. Winston no longer has the gumtion to pull off another electorate seat win, and his recent attacks on the base of his support shows the heirachy of NZF don't have a braincell between them. I suppose they are reliant on the inevitable age related dementia that oldies get, hoping that they will forget their treachery in the fight against rates ripoffs.
The problem here is that National won't have any coalition partners. This is the key problem that National must address

peterquixote said...

good dude, i liked what you written,thanks for the history of peter,
watched peter last night on some awful tv program about spelling, and well, he can spell,
could you go further on this thing, like tell us why you thin people actually won't vote for him next time, the worm and that,

Peter McK said...

i think Dunne will come back some what as people abandon the corrupt Labour party, and as Winston is finished many of those people will not send their vote to National - so Dunne may be lucky and come back with a few more poodles - then hopefully he can be Nationals Poodle

This Is Christchurch said...

Dunne has lost a lot of support, which he deserved to for going with Labour. Most of his support in 2002 came from the conservative Christian community through the alliance with Future New Zealand. Peter Dunne entering a coalition with the Labour Party was not what we expected. The flagship Families Commission policy is a bureacrat non-entity. Thus, Dunne's choice of bosom buddies cost him dearly in 2005. I personally only voted for his party at the last minute because of Don Brash's stupid dismissal of possible coalition partners. Having seen him support Labour again, well, he had his chance and he blew it.

This Is Christchurch said...

"The problem here is that National won't have any coalition partners. This is the key problem that National must address"

The first thing they could do is, get a new leader.
Brash gets elected as leader, and sets about ignoring the Act party. Then, he refused to give them any acknowledgement in the election.

National would have got my vote if Brash hadn't been so stupid over coalition partners.

This Is Christchurch said...

"The problem here is that National won't have any coalition partners. This is the key problem that National must address"

The first thing they could do is, get a new leader.
Brash gets elected as leader, and sets about ignoring the Act party. Then, he refused to give them any acknowledgement in the election.

National would have got my vote if Brash hadn't been so stupid over coalition partners.

libertyscott said...

Dunne will come full circle - his party will be back to himself after the next election. His Christian supporters will erode further, as they wont reward him for propping up the Clark regime for two terms - his middle of the road centre right supporters will come to a similar conclusion.

His policies have limited to nil appeal (Transmission Gully, which still isn't going to be built and the Families Commission, which impresses nobody but its staff) and the more people want to change the government, the less they vote for little parties which straddle the political divide - especially one that looks like one foot is mostly comfortable on the left.

He has done little for his electorate, like most MPs they claim credit for bureaucratic decisions that have little to nothing to do with them or any influence they have.

Brian Smaller said...

Hasn't the Hunting and Fishing part of United Future divorced him as well?