After an exhaustive inquiry following the release of Dirty Politics during the 2014 election campaign, the office of the Speaker has released some new national standards for politicians.
The Right Honourable David Carter, Speaker of the New Zealand Parliament, today released a raft of new standards that he says politicians will have to meet if they wish to stay in parliament. Contained within the release are a list of behaviours politicians will now be measured against. The measurements will be made through a range of tests to be carried out by carefully trained individuals with results then being immediately released to the media so politicians can be ranked on the basis of these arbitrary scores.
A “how to” list for new politicians has been released to the media and as we are a blog and full of many, many hard-hitting newly labelled journalists, we can now print that list for you because, after all, modern journalism is all about the cut and paste.
Behaviours: (to be shown within the first 6 months of commencing the new parliamentary term)
- Lying: with the electorate so strongly voting for a coalition led by liars it’s important that any new politician exhibits this behaviour as soon as possible. There are many ways to lie. Take a leaf out of the Prime Minister’s book, for example, and either forget everything that ever happens to you or, as he more often does, start with a slight mis-truth and then either get nearer to or further away from the truth depending on the questions being asked by your media chums.
- Measurement (metaphorical): extremely flammable trousers, extended proboscises.
- Nepotism: with so many jobs in the office of any incoming politicians it’s important to remember the best place to find people to fill these vacancies is within your own family.
- Measurement (actual): one family member – 5 points; two family members – 15 points; three or more family members – 25 points and a select committee posting.
- Conflicts of Interest: as many politicians come to parliament having engaged in a vast range of business activities. It’s important for new politicians to protect and even enhance their interests whilst in parliament (who knows when you might be voted out – particularly if you’re a list MP or used to be in the Shipley government). If, for example, you have vast interests in an irrigation company, it is considered extremely wise to ingratiate yourself with the Minister for Primary Industries. Better yet, become the Minister for Primary Industries. The closer you can be to the decision-making process, the more likely you are to have a positive influence on decisions being made that could impact upon your business and the un-taxed income of your family.
- Measurement (metaphorical): fingers in pies.
- Bullying: having set the standard for all politicians over the last term, National Party leadership team John Key and Steven Joyce have made names for themselves through their ability to sidestep a range of thorny issues by calling the person disagreeing with them an idiot, a fruit loop, loopy, a dork, an egg, and egg-burger, a nerd, a dufus, a dingus, a knob, a muppet, a halfwit, a nincompoop, an imbecile, a simpleton, a clod, or a dullard. Or a moron. If you can call someone enough names enough times during a debate in parliament, or during a press conference following the release of a damning report of some kind, it is believed that you will be praised throughout the right-wing blogosphere. Get them on side and you will either become hugely successful for a short number of years because of a terminatory nick-name or be ruined. Or both.
- Measurement (actual): how many times you can use the phrase, “Shut up, you dick” during a parliamentary debate.
The new national standards for politicians will be in place across the course of the current parliament.