But for me, the defining moment of the election campaign was what Act's Mana candidate blurted before his meltdown:
"My best mate moved to California and works as a cameraman. My sister's moving to Brisbane next week."
Wave goodbye to your future, NZ. This isn't a diaspora, it's desertion in the face of insurmountable odds on the home front. In all the candidates meetings on the campaign trail, I never heard anyone mention how to truly grow the jobs in New Zealand. The Greens were the closest with their "Green Jobs" initiative, which still seems as plausible a scheme as Canada's internet money scheme from South Park.
Labour talked up apprenticeships, but training's not really an issue. NZ has not just unemployment but also massive underemployment. We are shit human resource managers. There are taxi drivers with PhDs, overseas doctors working as Star Mart operators. Rod Oram spoke on this idiocy a couple of weeks ago on NatRad.
I declare that all parties lack the Vision Thing on economic recovery. All these mumbo-jumbo election promises are pointless when you factor in those dark brooding clouds in Europe, China and the US. 2012 is going to be a cunt, and all we've got to choose from is pussy soundbites.
That said, my party vote's going to the Green Party for the first time ever this election. There are lots of reasons behind that decison, but the three main ones are:
1. There needs to be an effective brake pad on National's use of urgency. I do not trust National to slow down their record of urgency motions. Labour don't cut it either. I trust the Greens to fulfil that function.
2. I want Mojo Mathers to be NZ's first Deaf MP. I hope she has an NZSL interpreter for her maiden speech. The vanilla people will have to get used to that mesmeric waiata some time.
3. After twelve years of being Labour's bitch, the Greens deserve a fair suck of the sav.
My electorate vote is going to ALCP's Richard Goode, because he deserves it, and Kris Faafoi needs to learn a lesson. ALCP are the only party campaigning on a "Grow the Economy" policy too. Hemp for Victory!
As for the referendum, I'll be voting to keep MMP. The alternative choice will be STV, insurance in case of improbable defeat. The FPP and SM vote will lickety-split the vote into meaninglessness.