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Mike's Minute: The onus is on the Govt to end the protest

Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Mon, 21 Feb 2022, 10:09am

Mike's Minute: The onus is on the Govt to end the protest

Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Mon, 21 Feb 2022, 10:09am

The funniest thing over the weekend was the petition to ask Andy Foster to stand down and for the Government to do something about moving the protestors on.

Do the petition organisers not get the glaring contrast in commitment? A protest, especially this sort of one, is about dedication and sacrifice to the cause. A petition is the domain of the bored and devotees of lip service. They pretend to care without having to do anything too energetic.

It's laughable. You can see Andrew Coster in his office not having the slightest idea of what to do, until the petition arrives. "Oh, thank God, a petition. Phew, that solves that then."

This protest has been won by the occupiers. They have all the power. It's an astonishing thing to witness, if you think about it.

They have literally won at every turn as the establishment and its haughty arrogance have been left floundering, seething, and bewildered.

The Government are now in a massive hole. Having dismissed the protestors with such a lavish amount of condescension they are now snookered. Yes, there were some mad and dangerous people at the start, and, yes, the government was probably right to stay clear. That’s changed but the government hasn’t changed with it.

Their determination not to engage only hurts them. What they didn’t accept, was this is about way more than those on the grounds. A lot of New Zealanders share the broad sentiment, not even specifically about mandates, but about the gobsmackingly arrogant way this government runs the country, and the Covid response specifically.

We are being treated like children, told what to do, when to do it, and why to do it. It's dictated to us by, not just a bunch of control freaks, but so often an incompetent bunch of control freaks.

The Prime Minister has never looked more removed from the real world. She's rarely seen these days. Last week it was one day, one outing and it involved planting trees with kids.

The protestors now have nothing to lose, the ball is not even close to being in their court.

Not helping is the appointment of Andrew Coster as Police Commissioner. He was widely seen at the time as being a nice but a soft operator. How much buyer's regret is now swirling round the beehive at that PC gesture?

Ultimately, Coster will lose his job. They need a scapegoat. But in the meantime, the onus is on the Government to govern.

They need to get over their greatest of Achilles heels, admitting they are wrong and fixing it. As every day passes without them recognising it's their problem and no one else's, they'll watch their political capital drain at a rate of knots.

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