Who needs David Farrar when National have John Armstrong?
John Armstrong is a nice chap who sometimes has some interesting things to say, but his column in the Weekend Herald this weekend seems bewilderingly lop sided.
John's thoughts this weekend are a familiar theme, how great John Key is. This weeks thoughts however seem a tad enthusiastic. This weekend his claim is that one of the new reason John Key is great is because he's not really very right wing.
That's right, according to Mr Armstrong, John Key is pragmatic, not ideological. There is some truth to that, but only by default. As a money trader, a philosophical underpinning is not required. Key has no use for ideology, he's the bloke who couldn't remember how he felt during the Springbok tour, he doesn't have the imagination for ideology.
Most ruthless sadists don't.
Armstrong argues that Key isn't using moderation to hide a hard right agenda, and then magically lists all those hard right agendas...
Sure, the National minority government has undergone a slight lurch to the right since last year's election, beating the drum on welfare reform, getting more hard-nosed on housing the poor, seeking to break the power of the teacher unions, slowly privatising the public service, and floating portions of state-owned companies on the stock market.
...sure says Mr Armstrong, sure John's done all those things, but that doesn't mean he has a secret hard right agenda. Technically Mr Armstrong is right, now they are all out in the open, it's not a hidden hard right agenda at all.
With the mainstream media so utterly compliant in the creation of that moderation camouflage, why bother keeping David Farrar on the pay roll as pollster/blogger?