Curtains for Curran?

Photoshopped image credit: Boondecker

You know the end must be nigh if Heather du Plessis Alan (HDPA) is putting the boot in to a Labour minister. Heather has ripped into Clare Curran for her inability to string a sentence together in parliament, but also stated that she believes the writing is on the wall for Curran, as a minister in cabinet, at least.

HDPA?implies that Curran has only made it to where she is in politics because she is a former flatmate of Jacinda Ardern. She also implies that?Jacinda doesn’t want to fire Curran because they are friends.

How is that for great leadership?

This may be the reason why Curran has survived two very significant errors, not recording details of meetings with both Carol Hirschfield and Derek Handley.

Nothing like being the (now former) minister for open government, is there?

But HDPA has raised a couple of other very interesting points that go to the heart of some of this government’s issues, and it isn’t just about Clare Curran.

Firstly,?Clare Curran has exposed the very shallow talent pool within the current government. We already know this to be true. Jacinda’s problem, if she sacks Curran as a minister entirely, is that there is no one of any calibre to bring in to the cabinet to replace her. No one at all.

Now that is a very scary thought. You have to admit that if Clare Curran is the best you can get from the talent pool, then things really are very dire.

It isn’t even as if she is new to politics, having been the MP for Dunedin South since 2008 but she has only ever been in opposition, until now. Still, she’s had 8 years to sharpen her skills and this is the best she can do?

The other issue that has been raised by HDPA while discussing this issue is probably, in a lot of ways, a more serious one. That is the issue of gender balance.

Jacinda has committed to bringing in more women MPs, trying to get to a quota of 50% by 2020.

The trouble with this policy, as we have said before, is that gender ‘balancing’ does not mean that you necessarily get the best ‘man’ for the job. If Clare Curran is the best that Labour can do to bring in women MPs, then they should drop this policy like a hot brick.

That won’t happen, of course. Jacinda has committed to it, and it is a great bit of virtue signalling. Nobody does virtue signalling better than Jacinda.

But if anything demonstrates the stupidity of this policy, it is the promotion of Clare Curran to the cabinet, although she probably won’t be there for much longer.

Jacinda’s problem is that, of the 6 women in cabinet, according to HDPA, four of them are duds.

(Personally, I think all 6 of them are duds, but we may just have to agree to differ. HDPA thinks that Megan Woods and Carmel Sepuloni are competent ministers. Like I said, we just may have to agree to disagree on that.)

The other 4 – Curran, Nania Mahuta, Jenny Salesa and Meka (Fightclub) Whaitiri are described by HDPA as incompetent. I don’t think anyone will disagree with that.

So, if Labour’s talent pool is already, to quote the Boss, ‘as shallow as a car park puddle in the middle of summer’, and Jacinda is committed to Labour’s policy of gender balance within the party, then all we have to look forward to is more ‘talent’ of the same calibre as Clare Curran. Or, more likely, someone of an even lesser calibre than Clare Curran.

And that is sad for voters, sad for taxpayers and sad for women.

Nobody could ever accuse me of not wanting to promote women but I don’t want women to be promoted just because they are women. I want women to be promoted to ministers because they will do a good job.

And if that isn’t scary enough for you, then think about this.

Julie-Ann Genter, Minister for Women, wants to extend the policy of gender balance right across the entire public sector.

In other words, we will not only have severely incompetent women in cabinet and in parliament. We will have them as managers and senior advisors in all government departments.

Why, oh why would we want this?