Monday, 7 October 2019

The Mien of a Tin Pot Dictator

Shane Jones has Run Out of Second Chances

Heather du Plessis-Allan
Newstalk ZB

I don’t think we should for one minute tolerate what Shane Jones has just done.  It’s very easy to applaud him because he stands up for the provinces or give him latitude because he’s witty.  But what he’s just done is reprehensible and deserves no place in our parliament.

Shane Jones has now threatened revenge against whoever it was who complained to the Herald about his comments at the forestry awards evening.  He says he knows who went to the Herald and he’s going to “deal to them”.

"When the election comes around and the Cabinet restrictions have been loosened, then I am personally going to deal to these National Party sympathisers who thought that it was a smart idea to try and have me quivering in a corner by racing to the media," he said.  "At the appropriate time, I will deal to them as a big-time, New Zealand First wrestler."

That is not OK.  It is not OK for a minister in Cabinet to threaten utu.
  He is one of the most powerful politicians in this country which means the impact that he can have on a single person or their business could be devastating.  I don’t know what he’s planning… he hasn’t been clear about it… but threats like that are intolerable.  Quite frankly, Shane Jones has run out of second chances.

His behaviour in this term . . . has been disgraceful. He has publicly rebuked the chair of the Warehouse group telling her how to do her job.  He has publicly rebuked the chair of Air New Zealand saying he’s ‘outlived his usefulness’.  He has publically rebuked Air New Zealand's former chief executive Christopher Luxon telling him to ‘get back into [his] box’.  He’s publicly rebuked Fonterra's then-chair John Wilson, telling him to resign.

Now he’s admitted he told the forestry awards audience to vote for him if they want billions in funding  and when they complained about what they call bribery, he’s threatened them with utu.

Jones' behaviour would not have been tolerated by previous governments.  Can you imagine Clark, Key or English making excuses for this kind of nonsense?  This doesn’t reflect well on either Jacinda Ardern or Winston Peters.

Ardern - because she clearly has no power or permission to reprimand him or stand him down

Peters -  because he doesn’t seem to mind this kind of behaviour.

I don’t think we, the public, should tolerate this behaviour and this government should carefully consider whether it’s going to.

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