James Griffin 's Opinion

James Griffin is a columnist for Canvas magazine.

James Griffin: Conservative Party job application

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Conservative Party leader Colin Craig. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Conservative Party leader Colin Craig. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Dear Colin Craig (and anyone else at the Conservative Party, if there is anyone else), I am writing to you about the job vacancy I saw when I recently visited your website, the one where you are calling for candidates for the 2014 General Election. I would very much like to apply for this job, as I think I would make an awesome Conservative Party MP.

While it is true that I have absolutely no experience in politics and am generally ignorant in all things political, I don't think this will disadvantage me as a Conservative Party MP. In fact, I think my political stupidity will help me provide the sort of fresh perspective based on traditional values that you are looking for in your MPs.

In short, I will not over-think things like policies by not really thinking about them at all and will therefore fit right in with the Conservative Party.

I know for a fact that I will fit right in with the Conservative Party because I took the Conservative Test on your website.

Sure, it took me a few goes to get it right, but once I realised that if I ticked the blue box for every question - as this was the conservative way to go - then I scored a perfect 19/19, thus making me the Conservative of your dreams. I don't even mind that I don't actually agree with many of the blue box options because, I suspect, deep down you don't actually believe in them either.

It is this political and moral flexibility, I think, that would make me an ideal MP in a National/Conservative/ACT/New Zealand First/United Future/
Maori Party coalition government. The secret to a coalition that complex and, on paper at least, doomed to fail is, I feel, to have no political spine whatsoever.

Bending over, puckering up, I can and will do everything modern-day MMP politics requires of me to get, for the Conservative Party, the most important thing of all: a place in Government and a seat at the big boys' table.

I don't ask much in return for my unwavering support for the Conservative Party, not even my own electorate. I live in Auckland Central and there is really not much point in fielding a Conservative Party candidate here, because it is full of hipsters with waxed moustaches and myriad other versions of strange facial hair - and they're the National Party supporters! No, running as a Conservative candidate in Auckland Central would just be embarrassing for all concerned, so it is much better that you carry the can, electorate-speaking, over there on the other side of the bridge, in your spiritual home.

All I want, in return for my undying support, is a place high on your list - certainly no lower than #2, because I can't contemplate any Conservative Party list longer than that without laughing. I think I would make an awesome list MP. I could be like one of those New Zealand First list guys no one has ever really heard of, who keep a real low profile and don't apparently do anything, all the time letting the Leader do the leading thing and taking all the limelight and doing all the work. In this context I could be your invisible go-to List MP who rarely, if ever, actually even goes to Wellington.

What more can I say in support of this job application that will help you see that I am the right man to be a Conservative Party (List) MP? I am a middle-aged Pakeha male, which is right up your street, right? I have a family and you guys are big on family, right? I'm not rich like you, I'm afraid, unless I won Lotto last Saturday (I haven't checked the tickets yet) but I would quite like to be rich, which is totally in line with your policies about New Zealanders generating wealth. And I think your idea about holding a referendum any time anything needs deciding is awesome. I have no idea how it will work practically but anything where the finger can't be pointed at me having made the stupid decision is good as far as I'm concerned.

Oh, I do have a few beliefs of my own. Like I think that climate change is real and a very happening thing, I believe that smacking a child is kinda barbaric and is more about the parent failing to do their job properly than it is about "reasonable discipline", I believe same-sex marriage is okay, I believe in the moon-landings and, oh, I believe in evolution. But these trifling things shouldn't be a problem to an open-minded bunch like the Conservative Party, should they?

So that's me, Colin (and mysterious others), I look forward to your reply and, like the rest of the country, to working with you real soon.

- NZ Herald

James Griffin

James Griffin is a columnist for Canvas magazine.

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