16 Sep 2008

Of Cabbages & Kings & other matters of import.

While one does not normally support Winston Peters the events of the past few weeks reveal one thing - Winston has a problem - a very 21st century problem - that judgements are now made on perceptions rather than hard, substantive evidence.

While, for sometime, Winston has managed to bluff and bluster to position himself as the "people's champion" for didn't he stand up to Muldoon and, on a matter of principle, resign the National Party to stand for Tauranga to demonstrate the electorate's support for that principle he is now being tried by a jury of his"peers" and the media on an issue of principle.
Would you trust the country to these men?
The National Party shadow cabinet discussing what to do with Winston.

Unfortunately for Winston the substantive issue - Did he or did he not have to declare the donation of $100,000 that went into his legal fighting fund - has become "Did he or did he not know about the donation being solicited and paid into his lawyer's trust account?"

For his peers and the media it is easier to pillory Winston on the latter issue because he chose to grandstand a series of denials of knowledge of such largesse being extended to him. In such a manner the substantive issue isobscured and lost.

One is lead to conclude that the issue of should the $100,000 be declared will not be decided by the media or by the jury of Winston's peers because, in the public perception, the outcome has already been decided - guilt by association and a decision by John Key not to deal with Winston in the event of a close call in November.

For John Key is attempting to build up aperception of being a decisive, principled and strong individual as opposed to a person who takes a more measured, calmer, more rational approach to decision making.

To do this he and hisadvisers have adopted the "chicken licken" approach to political debate... to shout that the sky has fallen despite all evidence to the contrary on the basisthat given a loud enough shout the echo will become the evidence.

Of course John Key is familiar with such a strategy as that is precisely how the money speculators in organisations like Merrill Lynch operate in order to drive the speculation on the money or commodities they're gambling on up or down in speculative value and thusgain profit for themselves or companies they work for.

These decisions are not based on sound judgement from substantive evidence. It isjudgement based on perception, on image, on the loudest shout, on a chimera which, once accepted by others in the market, can cause a collapse of the whole artifical construct the money speculator (gambler) has built up. One only has to lok at the collapse of companies like Merrill Lynch ( a past employer of John Key ) to witness the fallacy of speculation on perception.

All of which leaves the N.Z. voter with two important questions " shouldn't we expect more from the N.Z. media when reporting and recording events than we are presently getting?" and "can we, as a nation, afford to allow ourselves to be governed by one whose judgements and reputation are made on perception and image rather than hard, substantive evidence?"

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