Via Imperator Fish, because let’s face it, I have steadfastly avoided all coverage of That Nice Mr Key’s overseas circus act, it seems that New Zealand is in the running for a seat on the UN Security Council.
This is not objectively a bad thing; NZ has already served on the Security Council three times, we’re hardly a country to back out of lending a hand in international situations, hell, we still cling to the geographic accident that made us technically the first country to declare war on Germany in ’39.
The problem is summed up nicely by Scott at IF:
Having a seat at the big table sounds fine, so long as there’s no international crisis at the time putting pressure on us to lean one way or the other.
Key likes to be all things to all people. He doesn’t so much express opinions as give people the answers he thinks they want to hear. That might be all well and good when we’re talking to President “Son of Jor-El” Obama, but what happens when it’s President “Prime Minister” Kills-Siberian-Tigers-With-His-Bare-Hands Putin on the other end of the line? When we’ve put ourselves out on the international stage and simply cannot keep everyone happy – when any decision is going to produce a whacking amount of public, media-attracting ammunition for the Greens/Labour/the Maori Party,* and backing away, saying “Well I’m relaxed about it, they can meet with me, I mean my Chief of Staff, I mean I haven’t seen any proof and anyway I was on a plane, they’re just scaremongering” is simply not an option?
We’ll be looking back on having our leader reading the Top Ten on Letterman with fucking fondness and nostalgia, that’s what’s going to happen.