In about 8 days our political leaders and wannabes will go to The Treaty Grounds at the Bay Of Islands for what is becoming one day in a series of "be seen to be there" photo opportunities.
Last week it was the entirely cringeworthy attendance at Ratana on the occasion of the birthday of the long deceased T W Ratana, who many years ago started his cult, the followers of which were taken for granted by Micheal Savage's original Labour Govt and that pointless marriage of convenience continued for the next nearly 80 years with no apparent benefit for Maori but considerably benefit for Labour' albeit significantly diluted with current schisms in maori politics.
New MP for Te Tai Tonga, Rino Tirikatene, Southern Maori's very own Kim Family, is being lauded as the next great brown Ratana hope.
How long before some wannabe sets up a similar exercise in futility with a day out with Destiny. It will probably get started with the first day at Tamaki's University in Sth Auckland.
As a young man I recall the great anticipation with which the announcement was greeted in the daily papers, when the current editor of the official organ (periodocal) of the Catholic Church would publish the political preference of the sitting head of the Catholic Church in a direction to the flock as to who they were expected to vote for.
Sensibly the founding fathers of the US were very specific in their constitution on the separation of church and state.
I wonder how the Reverend Dean Peter Beck will cope with that principle if he is successful in winning the vacant seat in the Burwood Pegasus Ward of CHC.
In the decade around 1980 The Orewa Rotary Club on the North Shore used to promote a members night when The National Leader would give them an address that would effectively kick off the political year with a combination of state of the nation and possible programm for his political year.
It seemed to me to be a more fitting start to the new year of politics that the current fawning, patronising shallow political displays at Ratana and Waitangi we are now saddled with in current times.
By all means have the followers of Ratana celebrate the original cult founder's birthday but leave the rest of us out of it, it is an embarrassment to the Nation. As for Waitangi, make it more appropriate to the rest of us who have chosen to make this counry our homland whether by migration in times more recent than the ancestors of the so named Tangata Whenua or as a birthright from equally connected New Zealanders, sans the political gyrations of some of us claiming a special status by a hint of a blood connection, rarely proved, to those who came in a canoe.
We all got here by a migration of one sort or another and we are all allowed our own beliefs.