We had 49 members. I was anxious to make 50. My phone rang and, joy of joys, she was keen to join. Her only concern was battery hen farming. She would sign up but we had to commit to freeing the chickens.
I explained that Act's commitment was to less tax, more personal responsibility, and that battery hens hadn't come up. I suggested that perhaps Act, sadly, wasn't for her. I lost my potential 50th member.
I was reminded of our lost member listening to Radio Live's Sean Plunket interview Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig.
It was a defining interview. Craig's "transparently honest" answer on chemtrails was that he didn't know.
He had been sent a wad of information and had yet to work his way through it.
Here's all you need to know about chemtrails: it's the theory that governments are spraying us with chemical or biological agents from high-flying aircraft. There's never been any evidence presented to support that the spraying is occurring or any coherent reason governments would be secretly dousing us.
But the leader of the Conservative Party is open to the possibility that governments are, in fact, doing precisely that.
Sensing he could be on a roll, Plunket asked whether he thought the United States Government could be behind the 9/11 attacks. Once again, Craig said he didn't know but with assistance from Plunket he did allow that "it sounds absolutely possible" that it was, indeed, a "terrorist attack". Of course, that left Craig open to the possibility that the attacks were, in fact, orchestrated by the US Government.
This is wacky stuff. Craig is "inclined to believe" that Neil Armstrong walked on the moon but won't "rain on the parade" of those who think the entire man-going-to-the-moon thing is a Government hoax.
That's why I recalled the hen lady. The advent of MMP saw a flurry of new parties and the same single-issue people quickly cycled through them.
Sometimes they joined and then left disgruntled that their pet ideas weren't treated seriously.
I am left wondering if the conspiracy theorists have found a welcoming home with the new Conservative Party. Certainly Craig was anxious not to offend those who believe that governments are mass dosing us, that 9/11 was a government job, and that Nasa staged the moon landings in Nevada.
Of course, it could be that Craig genuinely believes such nonsense possible. After all, conspiracy theories have the same amount of supporting evidence as the idea that a supernatural being made the earth and all its creatures in six days in 4004BC and now oversees human affairs.
The defining characteristic of the Conservatives may well be gullibility.
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