Conference 2008: More coverage on Douglas and can Hide turn into a “fire-breathing dragon”?!

Note: this post originally appeared on ‘Douglas to Dancing’, a blog I maintained from 2007-9 on the ACT New Zealand political party. The blog was an extension of the thesis I wrote about the Act Party in 2007, From Douglas to Dancing: explaining the lack of success of ACT New Zealand and evaluating its future prospects (PDF).

Just proving that Douglas brings headlines, I’ve found two other stories discussing his return to ACT. An NZPA report out on Sunday handily re-wrote ACT’s press release for it (as is typical with NZPA), while a more interesting opinion piece by libertarian Lindsay Perigo (whose views always makes ACT look mild) offered some typically blunt advice for the party:

It’s fine for Rodney [Hide] to be fashionably gaunt and try to impersonate models, but it’s hard to resist the conclusion that his last-remaining convictions melted away with his adipose. In any event, fashion and fitness shouldn’t be his focus. He should step away from the mirror and back onto a soapbox. He should rediscover the libertarian convictions that once meant something to him. He should become a fire-breathing dragon of liberty. He should fair frighten the bejeezus out of the horses! He should finally stop meandering this way and that, stop obsessing about being loved and man up for what he knows to be right.Some part of him must know this, since he’s asked a conviction politician to save him. Sir Roger Douglas, as it happens, doesn’t give a tinker’s cuss about freedom as such, but many of his nostrums are freedom-friendly … and he’s single-minded about them. No vanity sideshows for Roger. If Rodney can emulate this facet of Roger and become a conviction politician on stilts, he’ll not only be unique but might just also keep his seat on account of it.

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