I have always believed New Zealand's future is too important to leave up to 120 people of various intelligence sitting in Wellington. Last week's mess emanating from the Beehive merely confirmed that.
Sometimes being an MP allows a person to grow and develop into a great politician. But if the raw material isn't there in the first place it just isn't going to happen.
It has always troubled me when someone decides to go into politics from an early age. Jami-Lee Ross was 18 years old when first elected to the Manukau City Council in 2004.
Elected to the Auckland City Council in 2010 in the Howick ward and a Member of Parliament for Botany in 2011, winning a byelection. He is now 32 years old.
I can't see anything in his background, left school at 16 with no formal qualifications, that would make him anything more than a run of the mill politician.
There is nothing wrong with being ambitious. Wanting to get ahead. But my expectation is that anyone entrusted to help run the country will have some life and real work experience and must be about building something larger and more lasting than just themselves.
Politics shouldn't be about what they want – recognition, profile, power, whatever. It has to be about what they contribute, build and create.
If MPs reflect the make-up of our communities then you could say the behaviour we have seen, and heard, by Ross in the past week is nothing out of the ordinary. It happens in real life so why are we surprised when the proverbial hits the fan in the Beehive.
Because in real life when things go bad and get ugly you have a pretty good chance of keeping it quiet, hushed up. In politics, things have a habit of getting out. Getting leaked. In this case, it was Ross himself who decided to publicly put the boot into the leader of the National Party Simon Bridges, his leader.
He accused Bridges of corruption over a large donation, making disparaging remarks, caught on tape, about which ethnic group is more desirable as an MP than another and making hurtful and cruel remarks about fellow MPs. Ross had a complete meltdown that caused Bridges and the National Party embarrassment and humiliation.
Did Bridges see the train wreck coming? It must have been evident for months. Where were his advisers?
As leader of a political party, you would have enough to do without having to douse an affair of this intensity on your own. You must have skilled people available to undertake the "difficult conversations". Even when one party is clearly not mentally fit.
My friend, I call her an expert in the field of difficult conversations, told me politicians and senior executives are not trained to have difficult conversations. They attempt it and invariably mess it up.
They let things drift initially, hoping the problem will go away. It never does. They are reluctant to ask for help and when they do it is often not satisfactory or applicable. They try to contain the problem, muddle their way through and go into lockdown mode. They want to believe the situation is retrievable. And they can handle it. In Bridges' case, at the same time, he has had to attempt to keep the rest of the troops together.
Whether he wanted their advice and whether they knew what they were talking about, everyone seems willing to tell Bridges how he should have handled the Ross debacle.
Many MPs are reported as saying this is the first time in memory they have seen anything on this scale, within any political party. Media commentators, previous high ranking National Party members and former National MPs say the same. Thankfully the Labour coalition Government has remained quiet. They know that at any time a similar bombshell could explode on their home turf. It's only a matter of time.
Will the knives be out now for Bridges from his party? Will he be jettisoned? If what we have seen is so unprecedented how would any leader have handled the situation?
Everyone is now the expert. But could and should senior National Party officials have done more, earlier? Questions, answers and explanations will be expected. Difficult conversations will continue to be had.
The National Party is known to be ruthless when conducting autopsies. But if undertaken without blame, it can go a long way towards creating a climate where the truth is heard. And there's nothing at all wrong in showing a little kindness. It's what the Prime Minister keeps telling us. But I suspect the National Party would choke on that one.
Merepeka Raukawa-Tait is a Rotorua district councillor, Lakes District Health Board member and chairs the North Island Whanau Ora Commissioning Agency. She writes, speaks and broadcasts to thwart political correctness