Thanks to an earthquake and his contempt for the democratic process Sideshow Bob managed to get himself re-elected for another undeserved three years.

Yes, if you ensure you are constantly in the media for a fortnight and refuse to be accountable for what you did during the previous three years then you too can be elected Mayor of Christchurch!

It's hardly a glowing endorsement for representative democracy.

It's an empty victory in many ways but that won't matter to Bob, who isn't big on substance anyway. I heard him in the media saying how 'humbled' he was to win. But the problem is he didn't win - it was a caricatured and manufactured Sideshow Bob who won. The real Sideshow Bob, the one in the pocket of property developers, was nowhere to be seen.

And the local media, The Press in particular, allowed him to get away with it. Only Newstalk's ZB's Mike Yardley attempted to find Bob's real agenda under all the PR flannel.

The real Sideshow Bob, the secretive and elitist politician we have come to loathe and which over 50,000 people voted against, was hidden deep within that 'earthquake' jacket he wore for over a month.

Now that he's won, the real Sideshow Bob, in the Italian suits and driving around in the ratepayer funded Porsche Sportster, will now come back into view.

But there's a difference. Bob will no longer be able to credibly describe himself as 'politically independent'.

Bob was always a National Party man but he liked to portray himself as being above 'sordid' party politics. Indeed he often pronounced on how there was no place for national party politics in local body politics.

But, when he was trailing Jim Anderton by 16 percent in the polls (pre-earthquake) a desperate Bob went running for help from John Key and the National Party. The charade of 'political independence' was dropped - Bob came out of closet.

This has also had consequences for his faithful followers on council. The likes of Sue Wells and the really revolting Barry Corbett will no longer be able to play the 'independent' card again - they simply will not be believed. When Sue Wells attacks the liberal left we will all know just whose political interests she is serving.

Bob has already tried to claim the moral high ground and called for council 'unity' and for all councillors to get behind him. This is rich coming from the man who habitually cuts councillors out of the decision making loop - especially the councillors he doesn't like.

Both councillors Yani Johanson and Chrissie Williams have experienced Bob's idea of a consultative decision making process - he makes a decision then people find out afterwards what that decision is.

Johanson and Williams have been joined on council by two new People's Choice councillors - Jimmy Chen and Glen Livingstone.

Chen wants, among other things, to improve the quality, openness, and transparency of decision making on Council. He also wants to restore the $1.5 million that Sideshow Bob and his cronies cut from community funding. This is People's Choice policy and one of the polices they will be pursuing.

Glen Livingtone, also wants a 'democratic and open council' . and, like Chen, is concerned about protecting Canterbury's waterways. He writes: 'Once our water is polluted, there is no turning back, for the present generation and those to come.'

Livingstone , a Presbyberian minister for twenty years, fought against Sideshow Bob's attempt to raise council rents by 24 percent. He has also criticised the council's funding cut to community groups while, at the same time, financially bailing out failed property developers.

Given that he has pledged to be 'more open and accountable' it'll be interesting to see how long it will take Sideshow Bob to turn against the People's Choice bloc - because he will.


  1. The coverage of Bob's 'victory' was enough to make me want to puke - Parker and his wife congratulating each other: "Congratulations Mrs Mayor", "Congratulations Mr Mayor".

    Now where did I put that bucket?

  2. You are so right!! The high viz collar-up campaign jacket will be replaced by the Italian Job. I want to know what will happen to my quake damaged rate-payers 'investment' ex Henderson properties. Has insurance paid out on them, or did council self-insure?

  3. Two Henderson properties have been demolished but they were only insured for the price of the demolition. So more money down the gurgler - Bob, of course, has been 'too busy' to talk about this.

  4. Only insured for the price of the demolition!!!! Most Bob voters won't have a clue about this and let's hope someone will make him accountable. I guess he's now hoping the demolished buildings are out of sight, out of mind. O well,as long as he looks right, and interviews well on TV, no-one will care.

  5. No one really cares about Bob Parker, the beauty in Bob Parker is that he is NOT Jim Anderton.

  6. But your a Rodney Hide supporter so what would you kmow?


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