Questions, Questions, Questions

By   /   October 25, 2018  /   17 Comments

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Questions, questions, questions: there is still so much that we don’t know about the extraordinary events of the past ten days. And perhaps the most frustrating aspect of the whole saga is how unwilling all but a handful of journalists have been to dig too deeply for the facts the public is so anxious to learn.

THE RIGHT’S RESPONSE to Jami-Lee Ross’s temporary detention at Middlemore Hospital has been interesting. The National Party’s defenders flatly reject the idea that its leadership has acted in any way improperly in relation to Ross. And yet, piecing together what little information has made its way into the public domain, it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that at the point of crisis, early on Sunday morning (21/10/18) Ross was in the company of a National Party MP. Whether it was this MP, or someone else, who became so alarmed by Ross’ behaviour that they called the Police, remains unclear. What is certain is that Ross was conveyed to Middlemore because he represented a danger to himself, or others, and against his will.

That, barely 48 hours later, Middlemore was willing to release Ross strongly suggests that the circumstances which gave rise to his temporary detention no longer existed. Friends have provided a place of refuge for him out of Auckland where he is currently recuperating, taking stock, and considering his future.

For Simon Bridges and Paula Bennett, however, the Jami-Lee Saga is far from over. A great many questions have accumulated over the course of Labour Weekend and it is clear that neither the Leader nor his deputy can answer them without the risk of re-igniting the political firestorm of the past ten days.

If, for example, the blogger Cameron Slater’s claim that three of the four anonymous complainants who featured in the Newsroom exposé of Ross’ behaviour towards women are employed in either the Leader’s or the Deputy-Leader’s office is confirmed, then the public may feel that they have been short-changed when it comes to being given all the relevant details surrounding the charges levelled against the Botany MP. The public may also begin asking why these details are available from a blogger, but not from the journalists of the Parliamentary Press Gallery?

Questions are also being asked about whether or not, over the course of the past month, the National leader and/or his deputy were in contact with Ross’ medical adviser/s? And, if so, whether those advisers had warned Bridges and/or Bennett that it would be unwise to do or say anything likely to jeopardise Ross’ already compromised mental state? If the public were to discover that the National Party leadership had been explicitly cautioned against naming Ross as the probable leaker of Bridges’ travel expenses – but went ahead and did it anyway – then they might form the opinion that Ross’ manic night-time ride from Auckland to Wellington, and his epic media stand-up the following morning, were entirely avoidable events.

Such speculation cannot possibly be helpful to Bridges and Bennett – raising as it does the thought that Ross may have been used as the unwitting instrument for rallying the National Party caucus behind a leader whom the voters showed little sign of warming to or respecting. The idea of making a mentally unwell MP the means of achieving such a disreputable objective is not likely to inspire very much in the way of trust or confidence in the putative perpetrators. Quite the reverse, in fact.

The problem with this sort of speculation is that much of the known conduct of the National Party leadership appears to reinforce it. If someone was intending to push a mentally fragile person over the edge, then threatening him with the anonymous testimony of four aggrieved female complainants, might recommend itself as a highly effective way of doing it. If that someone then publicly suggested that the person in question had been behaving in ways incompatible with his status as a married man, well then, it’s easy to see how the notion that he was being pushed to the limit might take a firmer grip on the public mind.

To the truly cynical, the sudden appearance, in the very midst of Ross’ jihad against his former National colleagues, of a sensational exposé detailing the Botany MP’s abusive and manipulative relationships with three parliamentary staffers and an unnamed National MP would elicit only the most sardonic of grins. If one was writing the script for such a political melodrama, the line given to Bridges would have to be: “Whew! That was lucky!”

Just how lucky was revealed by TVNZ’s political editor, Jessica Mutch Mackay, on Tuesday evening (23/10/18) when she described how National’s numbers, in the Colmar-Brunton poll being conducted coincident with Jami-Lee’s jihad, were plummeting right up until the moment, mid-week, when the story detailing Ross’ improprieties began to dominate the headlines. The word “fortuitous” hardly seems to cover it!

Questions, questions, questions: there is still so much that we don’t know about the extraordinary events of the past ten days. And perhaps the most frustrating aspect of the whole saga is how unwilling all but a handful of journalists have been to dig too deeply for the facts the public is so anxious to learn.

Fortunately, for the historical record, there is one person who knows a great deal about all of the events touched on in this post. Resting quietly, in an undisclosed but secure location, the MP for Botany, Jami-Lee Ross, waits patiently for all of these many questions to be put to him. With what should we expect a man who has nothing left to lose to answer – except the truth?

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17 Comments

  1. Castro says:

    Collins/Yang 2020 😉 Bridge to the Mainland 2025… OBOR!!!

  2. Grant says:

    Oh what a tangled web they weave when they practise to deceive !,

  3. Observer Tokora says:

    Vomitous

    The indelicate habits of Paula Bennett and Simon Bridges are now well known. For both of them speak only of themsleves – endlessly.

    However, there are issues about a compliant Chinese donor whose money was concealed and diced and allotted to curious names. Within the law? Possibly. We do not know.

    There are issues, despite DR Mapp refusing to discuss them, about the activities of, and the influence of the China Communist Party.

    Why has the National Party filled and sold the Wealthy suburbs of Auckland with Chinese people. Why was that wealth boom not shared with other persons in New Zealand ? Perhaps the unsavoury John Key can explain. No point in asking slippery Bill English. He has a firm habit of not knowing any answers to anything.

    Should the Council of Auckland bother developing infrastructure and services – if it is only going to end up as free benefits for non New Zealanders?

    there is immense poverty in Auckland. Low wages organised by Billy English coupled with the sale of State Housing is a large part of the cause of that.

    Should Auckland keep building Health services for New Zealanders? or should we exclude them and give the Services to floods of Foreigners.

    Simon, Paula and China Doll Judith should provide some answers.
    Why is National selling New Zealand to their Asian and American friends in huge numbers ?

  4. e-clectic says:

    Are the journalists afraid of what they might find if they turn over a stone?

  5. Pete says:

    Short-changed when it comes to being given all the relevant details surrounding the charges levelled against the Botany MP?

    Women employed in either the Leader’s or the Deputy-Leader’s office? Or in the environment? “I can find 15 women” ?
    ………………….

    “Let’s have an office meeting. Bring some of your girl buddies.”

    “Have any of you had dealings with Jami-Lee Ross? Any at all.”

    “I don’t know him but he looked at me funny in the corridor one day.”

    “Okay, that’s one.”

    “I had to take him a pile of papers one day and he was in a bad mood and snapped at me because he reckoned I was late with them.”

    “Okay, two.”

    “I had an affair with him and it didn’t end well.”

    “Three.”

    “He gave me a card when he found out it was my birthday.”

    “Four.”

    “He’s a sleaze.”

    “Five.”

    “Only 10 to go. Come on, girls…”

  6. bert says:

    What does it say about the combined intellect of the National Party when the deputy is one Paula Bennett… seriously?

    Everything she does is untidy.

    My wife, whom does not do politics very well, even commented when she saw Bennett on T.V. 1 news last night dressed in a Leopard Skin suit, that Bennett is suffering from a mid life crisis. Bennetts nasty attacks on JLR( he is no saint) shows what a hideous personality she truly is.
    Watching her be reprimanded by the Speaker yesterday, clearly shows she does simply not learn by her mistakes. Is this somebody you would truly vote for?

  7. countryboy says:

    “Jami-Lee Ross, waits patiently for all of these many questions to be put to him. With what should we expect a man who has nothing left to lose to answer – except the truth?”

    Exactly. In fact, it could be argued that it might be ‘the truth’ and his [JLR] abandonment to it, for what ever reason, which is what’s led him to this moment.
    I’ve been privy to domestic squabbles where someone has pushed another into a corner, then that person under attack drops a clanger in defence. A secret that should have remained so is revealed, for example. There’s a terrible, eye of the storm, moment when there’s complete silence… then all Hell breaks lose as the crockery starts flying, as the kids make a run for it to hide in their bedrooms, then the dog rushes in and bites the noisiest person jumping up and down the most and usually the innocent yet aggrieved. I remember going outside in the dark and watching in through the lounge window dispassionately as there was much arm waving, hair pulling, shouting, screaming, crying, door slamming and once someone thought to finally kick the dog up the arse, yelping, howling and scratching at the slammed door to get out. I remember it was like being at the movies but colder and I had to stand up.
    We should always remember just how corrupt NZ politics really, actually is.
    It must be. Just look around? I’m not going to go on an NZ/AO farmers-being -ripped-off rant again. I’ve written enough here about that. But I will say… Just look around? What do your eyes tell you? What does your common sense tell you? Just ponder the money john key wasted on absurd and unnecessary idiocies ( swindles ) while homeless people cowered in the streets for example? Millions of dollars taken out of our tax system on a hobbit swindle? Millions wasted on a flag change debacle? (And a revamp currency change too, remember?) More millions spent on steven joyces media works company, multiple millions of our tax money spent bailing out South Canterbury Finance, millions spent by bolger on the BNZ bale-out that fay etc benefited from. What about how alan gibb made billions off the sell-off’s of what were our stuff and things? You want to ask teresa gutting about OUR telecom? Our electricity generation is a multi billion dollar a year con job. We pay through the nose for a natural resource, the supply of which we’ve well and truly paid for. It goes on and on…
    JLR will be working hard to figure out where to start with his exposé’s.
    Leonardo Da Vinci, right? “Realise that everything connects to everything …”
    Once one swindle collapses? The whole shitty, nasty mess will collapse like a stack of cards. And that’s why the media won’t go near it. Because most of them are cowards, too afraid to lose their massive salaries. Anyone know how Big mike hoskings is getting on with driving his Ferrari? Can he reach the peddles? Oh? Paddle-shift on the steering wheel. Of course.

    • SARAH says:

      I have to tell you that this is the best comment on this whole saga I’ve read. Serious and made me laugh.

  8. mary_a says:

    Thanks again Chris for keeping this topic open.

    Seems Slater is coming down on Jami-Lee Ross’s side in all of this. If he is one of the people currently supporting Ross through his recent illness, then there’s a slim chance, with JLR’s permission of course, to get hold of all the information the Botany MP holds on Natz, including that on John Key.

    If Ross allows Slater access to his phone and other devices, then all hell could break loose in Natz if Slater starts drip feeding information via his WO blog site. Should this be the case, some interesting times could be coming up. Dirty Politics II?

    However, this will have to be Jami-Lee Ross’s call.

  9. wild katipo says:

    The ChiNational party.

    They are no longer the Gnats.

  10. Marc says:

    Nat Party Hit Job, SS style hit-men in Chicago Boys’ suits, that is the reality.

  11. Mat Simpson says:

    These people are vile and repulsive and i will make it my business to tell anybody i come across that is associated with this National party exactly that.
    They represent everything that is evil and destructive in this country and i only wish people would wake up and see what is glaringly obvious.
    I would love to see people take to the streets to say they have had enough of this type of political deceit and corruption.

  12. Michelle says:

    Mat people don’t wont to wake up and see what is glaringly obvious cause they are just like the people they voted for, bloody all about themselves.

  13. Mjolnir says:

    Funny thing, in all of Ross’s public appearances he never comes across as unhinged, on the edge, or even stressed. He seems balanced and confident.

    That’s the guy who suddenly needed to be “sectioned” (without due legal process I might add) and then released after 2 days?? Colour me sceptical. Something is rotten in the state of Aotearoa.

  14. JustMe says:

    I was trying to think of an apt word to describe the NZ National Party right now and that is ‘malevolent’. And thanks to Google these are: synonyms: malicious, spiteful, hostile, evil-minded, baleful, bitter, evil-intentioned, poisonous, venomous, evil, malign, malignant, rancorous, vicious, vindictive, revengeful, vengeful, pernicious; cruel, fierce, nasty, unfriendly, unkind, ill-natured;
    literarymalefic, maleficent.

    May I suggest the NZ National Party changes its motto to the above words as they(the words above) now seem perfectly suitable for such a political party.

    There are two main malevolent senior persons in the NZ National Party that are doing a superb(may I congratulate both Simon Bridges and Paula Bennett?)job in destroying National so effectively from within. Keep up the good work you two and you will have achieved the result that is so needed i.e the destruction of a political party that lost direction over the past 9 years it was in government.

    After reading Cameron Slater’s article today I was surprised and yet not surprised at the dirty under-handed and disgusting actions both Bridges and Bennett got up to over the past so many months to make a scapegoat out of Jami-Lee Ross.

    Now even though I am not a National Party supporter(I am in fact Labour Party)I would probably have provided JLR a place to sleep if he was homeless. It’s human nature to want to help others. However where National is concerned human-nature just doesn’t exist in their books. Hence them deserving the Moniker of Malevolent and its related synonyms.


 
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