The voters have spoken, most of the votes are counted and all we can do is leave it up to the politicians to decide who's running the country.

Theoretically, it should not matter to us, no matter what political colour we favour.
Each and every party, in the lead up to the election, promised they would work hard for all New Zealanders. We heard them.

They all said they would fix the problems most of us are concerned about and we would all be much happier for having voted them in. Now, all we have to do is leave them to it and they will deliver on those promises, as they have done after every election before this.
We voted according to what the candidates said. We listened and we heard them say they would fix this, improve that, eliminate the other and create new and improved everythings. Of course we believed them and that's why they got our votes.
Our job is done.

For the next three years at least we can watch the improvements take place and we will all be happy.

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Regardless of the political leanings of the winners, it is their job to work for all of us - not just certain segments, and certainly not just their friends or the people who voted for them. They are now in charge of a country of contrasts and there are many kinds of people to take into account when drafting legislation or allocating money.
Whether you voted out of self interest or in favour of the bigger picture, the leaders of our country are bound to deliver for all, crafting a Utopia and honouring the things they said.
That's why it doesn't matter who leads. We all win, ideally.

On a local note, congratulations to Harete Hipango, Whanganui's new MP, and to Steph Lewis, well done on a good fight.

As well as congratulating new MPs and wishing the losers well, I must congratulate all those who registered and voted. To exercise your right to vote is the extreme expression of optimism and hope. It's one vote among many, but without it democracy doesn't work. It requires the input of all of us to function, and that is why our forebears fought for universal franchise all those years ago. To those who voted - well done. To those who could have, but didn't - perhaps next time. To those who are too young this time but intend to take part when they can - we will welcome you, as we were welcomed when our turn arrived.

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Meanwhile, as New Zealand focuses on its election and how it affects the daily lives of its citizens, there are things happening in the northern hemisphere that once would have had people digging backyard bomb shelters and joining end-of-the-world sects.
While Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump are sabre rattling, posturing and threatening each other with extreme violence, the world, with the possible exception of Japan and South Korea, carries on.
The leaders in Washington and Pyongyang are calling each other names, firing test missiles and flying military aircraft provocatively, but the rest of the planet gets down to the business of cleaning up after hurricanes and earthquakes, makes new discoveries at the pyramids in Egypt and wonders if they really can afford a new phone.
Angela Merkel re-establishes herself at the head of Germany's Bundestag, Winston Peters plays hard-to-get, the weather's not looking flash over parts of New Zealand, the fuel's flowing again through the repaired pipeline, Kylie Jenner's pregnant, Steelform Wanganui lost their Saturday game and there has been another shooting in the US.

With things heating up between America and North Korea, shouldn't the world be worried? Shouldn't everything else that's happening be regarded as inconsequential in the light of possible planetary annihilation?

But there doesn't seem to be any obvious mass panic, in fact, everything continues as "normal".

Maybe it's because as long as those two keep barking at each other they're too busy to bite. While they're just making noise and puffing up their chests, there is little chance of either of them getting down to lethal business.

Perhaps that's why few people are taking them seriously and why bomb shelter sales haven't picked up since the 1950s.

It's when things fall quiet that we should worry; when neither of the two great leaders gives anything away, saving their energy for real, nuclear action.

In the meantime, people the world over conduct their daily business, keeping an eye on what's going on between those two but putting their efforts into getting on with things.
So should we.