We saw some of the interview with Guyon Espiner on Breakfast this morning, talking about MP's expenses. Whilst we concur with Espiner's view that perception is reality, we take issue with him on a few other points.
Espiner kept going on about the "average guy on the factory floor earning $50k". Having worked on a factory floor until three years ago, we weren't earning anywhere near $50k, even we were well above the average in terms of income. If Espiner is going to make such bold statements, he has to make sure they're factual, in our humble and considered opinion.
He also asserted that the "average guy on the factory floor" would be horrified by the revelations that have emerged over the past few days. We disagree. The "average guy on the factory floor" quite possibly isn't even aware of this issue, or in particular, all the intricacies thereof. Then again, the "average guy on the factory floor" probably watches the two-minute news snippets that Espiner and his colleagues serve up, and they have been delivered with a particular slant.
However, we reckon that the "average guy on the factory floor" is also a family man or woman, and so won't begrudge the likes of Bill English having a second home in Wellington solely so that he can live there with his family. The "average guy on the factory floor" will have a pretty good idea of the toll that politics can take on family life and relationships, and will be prepared to cut politicians of all hues a bit of slack for that reason.
All that aside, the controversy that has arisen over the last few days is not a good look for the government or its predecessor. Over at The Inquiring Mind, Adam Smith notes that people in glasshouses should be careful about throwing stones. Adam endorses the PM's call for a review, but cautions against an over-reaction. We concur with our fellow blogger sole. It's a messy business all round.