Thursday, April 24, 2014

An FPP politician in an MMP world

So, now that Shane Jones has gone, he's come clean about the reason: he didn't want to work alongside Russel Norman and the Greens. Which I think emphasises just how much of a throwback Jones was, and how unsuited he was to modern politics. Its been more than 20 years since we adopted MMP, and 18 since our first MMP election. Having to sit down and govern with people you were recently campaigning against and don't necessarily like is a fact of our political landscape, being able to do it and find the common ground in your agendas a vital skill. Jim Bolger could do it, governing with NZ First who had campaigned against everything he stood for. Helen Clark could do it, making peace with the Alliance, cutting a deal with Peter Dunne to maximise her freedom in government, and finally working with Winston, which is never easy. The Greens can do it, and found a narrow slice of common ground even with National. But here, at the end of his political career, Jones is saying that he lacks that skill, that he can't work with other parties. Like I said yesterday, good riddance.