Department of Internal Affairs

Proposals to change the unsatisfactory status of two vital heritage institutions are meeting strong resistance from their current host.

In 2010 the State Services Commission, in its bureaucratic arrogance, decided to merge Archives NZ and the National Library into the Department of Internal Affairs. National cabinet ministers, under the thumbs of their departments, agreed (such instances are more common than is usually admitted).

What do Housing Minister Phil Heatley and North Shore City mayor Andrew Williams have in common – beyond a couple of bottles of wine?

Try the following for starters: media witch-hunts, a penchant for hyperbole, significant differences with John Key, an ability to embarrass Rodney Hide, and strong survival instincts – and, sometimes, they can be dangerous to be around.