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Mike's Minute: It's sad, but it doesn't get a lot worse

Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Thu, 1 Feb 2024, 10:13AM
Photo / File
Photo / File

Mike's Minute: It's sad, but it doesn't get a lot worse

Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Thu, 1 Feb 2024, 10:13AM

"To whom much is given, much will be required." 

It's a great quote and is one of the reasons why my sympathy for Golriz Ghahraman is somewhat limited. 

I think Winston Peters said that it's sad, and if it was him, he is right. 

It's also made worse by the fact the whole tawdry mess is being played out so publicly. But then, "to whom much is given". She chose her life and with that came the scrutiny. 

$10,000 is a lot of clothing. She's back in court late this month and faces seven years in jail, which she will of course not get. 

In some respects, and this is where I do have sympathy, because of who she is her punishment has already well and truly started. Given retail crime in this country she is far and away your highest profile operator, or alleged operator. 

This carries the usual rider of innocent until proven guilty and so on. 

But we can psychoanalyse this stuff until we are blue in the face and given this happened over the holiday period while I was away, I watched in astonishment as so much of the media did. 

Almost instantly the story leapt from one of crime to endless interviews with mental health experts and psychologists about pressure and social media, in what turned out to be a mad mix of trying to extrapolate every last angle out of the story they could, to what appeared like some weird justification or bandwagon around people who either get abused or attacked, to the role of women in public life, to the impact of undiagnosed stresses. 

I like to keep things clean - theft is theft and it's against the law and there is no excuse. 

There's even less excuse if you are in a position of privilege. 

Complicit, and appallingly so in all of this, is her party. The Greens knew yet said nothing and said nothing for weeks. That in my eyes is aiding and abetting. 

In some ways the whole tragic saga turned into yet another of those modern-day soap operas, where we look to find an excuse for anything. 

Yes, women get attacked online. We all get attacked online. Anyone with a public profile is open to ludicrous amounts of commentary and abuse and behaviour that should really never happen and be dealt with a lot more severely than it is. But it doesn’t mean you nick stuff. 

Sometimes when you are guilty, if you are guilty, you just have to own it. 

If she did it, she is a thief and she deserves what's coming to her. 

A justice spokesperson in the Parliament of the land stealing stuff - it doesn’t get a lot worse. 

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