What if Don Brash had an alternative motive for his tactics since his takeover of ACT? Is it all a cunning plan?
I've met Don Brash twice.
The first time was during the 2005 election campaign when I was in a shopping mall in Henderson. I don't think he recognised me because he thrust some sort of electronic device under my nose and invited me to calculate my tax cut.
I remember typing in some measly income which was probably true at the time, at which point he lost interest and let me get back to my filled roll.
The second time was a bit later, at a ceremony where old mate, Paul Holmes, was given a Woodrow Wilson Award for liking the USA and regularly saying so in public.
This time I approached Dr Brash, shook his hand, and said I thought he’d performed well in the election campaign not long before.
He thanked me and we swapped anodyne trivia for a minute or two.
Although he seemed like a nice old buffer, courteous and free of guile, I have come to challenge my judgement of that evening in the light of recent developments.
What if he’s been stewing and plotting his revenge on the National Party ever since the Hollow Men came out and denied him a second go at the prize he’d so nearly won.
This is the only way of making sense of this otherwise intelligent bloke’s behaviour of late. No one ever got to the bottom of how Hager got all that material in that book.
The “political media” gave up.
Tell me it was some super hacker who got into the parliamentary email system, and I’ll ask you how a hand written fax from a motel in Timaru to a private house in Glendowie ever went near the electronics of parliament.
The best explanation is from Hager himself who says in his preface – referring to “some people in the National Party”
“Over two years they fronted up with evidence – internal reports, emails, travel itineraries and meeting minutes”
And, one might add, private facsimiles sent to Don’s home.
In her introduction to the Hollow Men, former National MP, Marilyn Waring, presumably in the know, again refers to “those National Party people who leaked material to Nicky Hager”.
So Don was white-anted by his own side? That’s what the author and preface writer both say.
What if behind Br Brash’s urbane and professorial persona beats a heart thirsting for utu?
What you might do is set out to destroy National’s coalition partner. You might start by rolling its successful leader.
This bloke, warts and all, was the one who saved his party from oblivion two elections ago and then led it into government.
You might then contrive to wipe out its whole caucus, including some highly saleable political commodities like Heather Roy.
You might then start advocating goofy policies, like more deregulation when you’ve got leaky houses galore, mines blowing up and big buildings collapsing in earthquakes.
For good measure, you might then pick a mayoral candidate who managed a big loss when National was streets ahead in any poll for your crucial electorate candidate, and then have a public argument with him.
Just for good measure, why not advocate legalising dope?
It all makes sense.
You read it here first.