What on Earth is wrong with Gareth Morgan?
Paddles, the Prime Minister's cat, lost a scrape with a car on Tuesday, earning a disproportionate amount of grief on social media for the death of a cat. Then again the loss of a family pet is a big thing we can all relate to.
But Gareth Morgan tweeted: "Was it out and about wandering? If so does this reflect the value the pm puts on nz wildlife?".
How tone deaf was that? Most are feeling for the Prime Minister and then Gareth puts the boot in. The Opportunities Party has some good ideas and got over 2 per cent support in the election, which was a good start. All they have to do is tell Gareth to stay off Twitter. Actually they need to lock him up in a box to just think. But don't open your mouth mate. Because your foot is already in it.
But the death of Paddles shows how much New Zealand has changed. Paddles made news all over the world. She had already been featured in Vanity Fair and they said that Paddles had a vital role in making Ardern the "latest hip, cool world leader that America wish it had".
Our Prime Minister is cool on the world stage right now and it's because she's a normal, decent person. A socialist sure. But a nice one. A caring one. Who owned a cat with opposable thumbs. Who could tweet.
While I have some doubts about us affording the wishlist of the new Government, it is showing us it's caring.
The 22 weeks paid parental leave for instance. It was something that National didn't mind but was prepared to make parents wait a couple of years for. I guess it was to make them seem responsible steerers of the tiller. It actually made them seem to be mealy mouthed tightwads who were more inclined to do nothing if it was going to cost.
And the best example of that was the million dollars granted to Teina Pora yesterday.
Amy Adams apologised to Teina last year for losing 21 years of his life and gave him 2 and a half million dollars even though his lawyers argued for 8. They believed inflation over the 21 years was not factored in and I had sympathy for that. But Amy Adams held tough and said no.
Within weeks of Andrew Little being the Justice Minister he's given Teina Pora a million rather than the $5.5 million they asked for and the whole thing has now dissipated. Teina is overwhelmed and wanted to thank "the Andrew guy who made it happen". And now we need never hear about the whole shemozzle again. Andrew Little. Nice guy. Amy Adams. Hard woman.
It shows that this Government has a heart. Something that the last Government failed to express even though they too are good decent people.
Like many I'd like to merge the heart of Labour with the fiscal discipline of National and then there'd be no stopping us.