Are We Ready for Another Female at the Helm?

Judith Collins is poised to make a bid for the leadership of the National party in a time when, in my opinion, we need a Kiwi Trump. One of the reasons that Trump has been so successful is that he is what we now call an “alpha male” – a blokey bloke. “A Good Keen Man” as Barry Crump would have said. Yet these strong males have been supplanted by effeminate characters like Canada’s Trudeau and France’s Macron.

Even Simon Bridges has paled into a shadow of his former self. I recently watched his maiden speech in parliament. What a passionate and enthusiastic young man he was. Where did he go? When did he turn into this hesitant and unsure fellow who seems so frightened of his own shadow?

I wonder if this is a good idea – to have another female leader. Somehow, I feel that we are living in an era where, politically, women have fought for the right to be equal, but have somehow ended up being “fast-tracked” and are now not necessarily being appointed on merit, but simply because of their gender.

When one looks at global female leadership of recent times, we see a legacy of complete and utter failure. Jacinda Ardern is a younger version of Helen Clark, and she was hardly someone who stamped her mark on New Zealand, or the world, in a positive way. After all, it was Jacinda’s mentor who was in charge during a period of decline in educational standards in less affluent parts of New Zealand. A madness of warm and fuzzy education and emphasis on cultural studies began to emerge under her watch to the detriment of reading, writing and arithmetic, and was exacerbated by the re-introduction of school zoning.

Theresa May has hardly been a shining beacon to inspire confidence in female leadership. She took the Tories from the centuries-old staunchly Conservative party in Britain to a group of divided and incompetent squabbling idiots who have completely obliterated the brand.

Hillary Clinton was poised to be the president of the United States of America – yet she singlehandedly turned the Democrats into a pack of rabid dogs, baying for Trump’s blood – and that of anyone who still has an opinion about God, morality and anything resembling old fashioned values.

Angela Merkel has taken Germany from triumph to a divided and troubled Nation, overrun with migrants, crime and social disunity.

Julia Gillard in Australia managed to make misogyny a buzz word around the world and anything that went wrong was because she was a victimised woman – not an incompetent person.

There are few female leaders who have succeeded. Margaret Thatcher did. Indira Gandhi did. Golda Meir did. But this band of “modern women” cannot hold a candle to the women who came before them and stood, not as women, but as individuals. Their gender had nothing to do with their strength of character, strength of conviction and strength of passion to serve their country.

It is time to find a leader who can stand defiantly and proudly and not be ashamed or too timid to do a Popeye and say “I am what I am.”
Who is that person? Well, it isn’t Judith Collins who wants to “just try harder”. The time for trying harder is over. You may get awards in school for a good attitude and doing your best – but, in order to lead a nation, one must be already a high achiever and top of the class.

I am beginning to think that the new leader isn’t in the National Party. Maybe it is time for a new party and a new brand of conservatives in Kiwiland. Someone like Nigel Farage. It sure as hell isn’t the time for a rinse and repeat female or a soft and wimpy man. It is time for a real man, a real woman and one who leads because it just feels right for us to follow.