If Colin Craig's Conservative Party didn't exist, surely the Nats would invent it anyway.
Their strategists know the score. That yellow bastard John Banks is history. No more mates there for post-election coalitions. The Maori Party has browned out. The appeal of United Future, like the last Spinal Tap tour of the US, has become incredibly select. John Key is looking like Nigel No-Mates the Nat.
Lo and behold, bare weeks before the last election, a gullible but wealthy political neophyte appeared on the horizon. Colin Craig, far-righteous messiah. Hurrah!, sez Key. The obviously clueless Colin would be a doddle to deal compared with Winston Peters.
The ill-suited Craig doesn't even grasp the first rule of politics, that you never throw your own money into the game. Sure, some parties require tithes from their MPs, but most of the legitimacy for their cause must come from the public.
If Colin Craig wants to be a fool readily parted from his money, politics is one of the most efficient ways to do it. If you think home renovations are a money pit, it's peanuts compared to politics. Why do you think the entrenched parties are so fond of sucking off the public tit?
That said, the Conservative Party leaflet fodder sent out before the 2011 election was truly memorable. At a Meet the Candidates Meeting in Whitby, I read through the CCCP's Are You a Conservative? Quiz while waiting for the show to start. Christ, I never laughed so hard at anything else during the whole campaign.
Aside from the McGillicuddy humour value, the Conservatives present a win-win proposition on either front.
Worst case scenario is that Craig blows a few mill of his own cash on a failed bid for a seat or the 5 percent threshold. He'd be replicating Christian Heritage's wasted votes in MMP's early days, sucking up the fundy vote into one useless rotten heap.
Best case scenario is that National gifts a seat to Colin Craig, and hilarity ensues. John Key has forgotten, or just plain desperate enough, to throw caution to the wind and throw his lot in with the CCCP. After all, he ended up supporting Labour over Sue Bradford's Anti-Smacking Bill all those years ago to distance himself from righteous nutters.
If National hitches itself to the Conservatives to stay in power, it'll make the Shipley-Peters gig look like a picnic. No satirist will be short of material. The backlash will be very amusing.
It's moments like this that I recall that the Romans never fed Christians to the lions. They'd kill them more creatively, such as roasting them alive in a hollow brass bull, with their screams bellowing out of the bull's mouth.