Matthew Hooton- Only half right half the time
Hooten definitely has a good understanding of local politics but I wish the mainstream media would stop referring to him as “right wing”. Hooten is not right wing by any moderate standards. He’s a left winger with some support for liberal economic policies but in true political terms he would probably more likely qualify as a left wing Progressive.
His political origins are left and he has only comparatively recently swung away from that side of the spectrum. He once supported Labour, and is recorded as describing the Klark government as a “breath of fresh air” after the Shipley Bolger years. He has also praised Klark as a “good manager”. He helped Don Brash organise a coup against Bill English, and then supported John Key’s replacement of Don Brash after asking Brash to resign. I suggest that nobody on the true right would prefer the soft leftist Key over the Conservative Brash.
In fact it was Brash’s Conservatism that got him off side with Hooton, and he once said Brash had “communicated to Maori, solo mums, homosexuals, immigrants and people planning to vote Labour that he did not see them as ‘mainstream New Zealanders'”. Of course this was not fact, merely left wing spin, and if Hooton had indeed been right wing he would never have said it.
Hooton also buys into David Frum style attitudes to Sarah Palin. He weakly describes her as “a moron” and disdains her interests in guns. Any right winger knows how important guns are to liberty, Hooton is yet to reach that simple Conservative milestone in political thought. He once, in a television studio, called Winston Peters a “fucking cunt” to his face. These are the words of a progressive with behavioral standards more in the shape of Perez Hilton rather than anyone on the right.
Brash’s relationship with Hooton is reported to have ended after Brash’s chief strategists Peter Keenan sent an email describing Hooton as “an idiot” who “is totally full of himself, and not half as good as his own self-image”. I agree with Peter Keenan. In fact I consider Palin far less a moron than Hooton an idiot.
The bottom line is that we have to stop accepting such politically confused people appointing themselves as spokesmen for the right. It is Hooton’s political fluidity that makes him unhelpful to our cause. We cannot afford to have that cause undermined by ideologically confused Progressives with ideas unsympathetic to Conservatism claiming to speak for us. Hooton speaks for the left. He proved that by undermining Don Brash.