Down here at the bottom of the world it's quite easy to get wrapped up in the frustrations and shortcomings of New Zealand's politics.
There's often a lot going on that causes angst and cynical eye-rolling.
But, compared to the circus acts that often pass for politics in Westminster and Washington, the Beehive isn't so bad.
Despite public groans and howls, the general reasonableness of what underpins government in Wellington is an undervalued strength.
It can only be seen as that by making comparisons with what happens elsewhere and also realising democracy and politics are fluid and have to be managed and watched attentively. Because they can always be worse.
Maintaining structures, adhering to processes and respecting traditions can easily seem boring, uninspiring, too rigid, and unable to bring about enough change.
People are drawn to spectacle and drama, including the ''it's so awful I can't stop watching" kind. There's been much of it about in recent years with populist politicians given the keys to major countries.
The curtains have apparently closed on Boris Johnson's time as the showman of British politics, to biting reviews. London's Sunday Times referred to his demise by resignation as "Boris the cat with nine lives has finally been neutered". The Observer called Johnson's leadership a "carnival of misrule".
A succession fight is underway with 11 contenders declaring to be the next prime minister amid extensive mud-slinging. Former Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is the early favourite.
Johnson is the latest populist to fall after Donald Trump in the United States and Scott Morrison in Australia. Brazil's Jair Bolsonaro, who faces re-election in October and is trailing in polls, could be next.
But populists can be difficult to keep out of the action as Trump, former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Bolsonaro's rival Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva show. It's hard to definitively write Johnson off the stage and he's still there as a caretaker prime minister.
Populists are personalists - they wrap their political goals in their own image. Johnson wore the idea of Brexit to achieve personal power but its impacts have been worn by other people. Covid-19 highlighted his unfitness for his role as competence is essential in managing a pandemic.
With Johnson's frame filling No 10 Downing St, Britain has evaded values the country has been known for on accountable, functioning government and the rule of law.
Under Johnson, rules could be broken and commitments to treaties could be ignored. With his bullish shamelessness, he exposed the fragilities of a system that relies on powerful people behaving according to benign norms.
New Zealand's political system, although based on Britain's, with the important addition of MMP, looks sturdier and more capable of sticking to careful rather than chaotic change.
The main parties' focus on the centre-ground, while frustrating to those wanting faster reforms, helps keep the country's politics sane and moderate.
A smaller society and down-to-earth inclusive approach should be more resistant to any future high-flying political opportunists causing long-term damage.
However, there's now a well-thumbed playbook for would-be populists and democracies need to keep up their guard.