I don’t know Northland MP John Carter at all so can’t say with certainty whether he is a total dickhead -- but there seems to be ample evidence to suggest that.
Be that as it may however, this kerfuffle over him cussing out a cop seems a trifling affair -- although it allowed for the amusing spectacle of John Key acting decisive and serious again, and a television news report showing Carter’s empty electorate office with a voice-over announcing there was no sign of him there today.
(The implication being that he was in hiding? Ahh, or maybe he was just somewhere else?)
Anyway the few facts as we know it about this incident are interesting for their banality: Carter is pulled over and the cop suggests the car isn’t registered. Carter says, “Look on the fucking front window“.
Now I don’t know about you, but if I was driving a registered car and a cop was dumb enough to say it wasn’t without checking then I’d be inclined to say pretty much that myself.
That just seems stupid on the part of the cop, if not mischievous and provocative.
Okay, Carter might have been intemperate -- but wasn’t it just a week ago that Alan Duff had the case against him dropped with the judge pointing out, “freedom only to speak inoffensively is not worth having"?
Frankly, I think both Duff and Carter over-reacted and were probably boorish, arrogant and all those other traits that seem to attend people who have spent a bit of self-important time in the public eye.
But it is not illegal to be a dickhead. (Although you wish, huh?)
The Carter thing was a non-event blown up big (unless some of those other accusations are confirmed). But the real story -- as is so often the case -- was ignored entirely.
Carter was pulled over for failing to indicate.
As an Aucklander used to people changing lanes with no warning I didn’t know that law was still on the books ($150 fine apparently).
Here’s a thought: instead of nailing Carter for saying what we all might have wanted to say in that situation, let’s hail the vigilance of that cop and get him down to Auckland -- and a few more like him.
New music by Emmylou Harris, Fleet Foxes, John Hiatt, Palestinian oud players, Moana and much more at Elsewhere. Enjoy.