Michael Wood

National's decision to collapse a select committee meeting to make some sort of point may or may not be good politics. But it is bad for our parliamentary processes and long term constitutional culture. 

On Wednesday something happened in Parliament that was on its face a clever but petty political move designed to capture headlines, yet at a deeper level ought to concern anybody interested in how New Zealand governs itself. Forgive me while I set the scene with some bureaucratic jargon before I tell you why I think what happened matters.

Rohan Lord's decision to bail on Labour is perhaps representative of the rise of a political class who aren't prepared to import kumara to earn a seat, but rather take the L'Oreal approach to politics

My, how politics has changed. As with so much of the New Zealand lifestyle it has been streamlined, professionalised and become a much more risk-averse environment in recent years.

The Spinoff last week asked me to consider the political highs and lows of 2016. So I did that and saw there first package come out over the weekend. So here are my thoughts on all that

Champs: Who would you rank as the best performing individuals in politics for 2016?

1. John Key, for perfectly executing the coup against himself, and Bill English, the little engine who finally did.

2. Winston Peters, who starts an election year with stronger polls than ever

3. Michael Wood, for reminding everyone that all politics is local