Chris Trotter had this (or something quite like it) in the Press earlier on in the week. It's taken me a while to think it through.
National are in all sorts of strife at the moment. And Labour have sucked in Parliament in the last two weeks. But this post isn't about either of those subjects. It's meant to be more contemplative and not actually give an answer or draw a conclusion.
The government has a thin majority. It seems unlikely they will be in the position to form another government after the next election. Which leaves us with the strong possibility of a Labour lead government.
As things sit presently, that would give us David Shearer as PM.
There are persistent bubbling rumours of others holding leadership ambitions. As you would expect, I mean who wants to be Deputy PM? That would be like heading for the Olympics with the idea that silver is really quite a nice metal.
Here's the bit where I damn Mr Shearer with faint praise. He's not done a bad job. And he needs time to prove himself.
Part of the reason for choosing Mr Shearer was to match the regular john image that the incumbent PM nurtured. Except that image is all in the past now, the tea tapes have inspired the media to change the narrative around the PM.
Labour's caucus and media/strategy team have failed their leader and party, for the last three and one half years. Did they choose the wrong guy? Not with Phil Goff, they just got their strategy wrong. With David Shearer? Time will tell, give him another year.
I can't help but feel that a lot of the reasons for choosing Mr Shearer are no longer relevant. He doesn't seem like a politician, but I want the PM of my country (whichever party they are from) to seem like a politician. And David Cunliffe seems like a politician. What about the deputy leader, Grant Robertson? At the moment his ambition has out-stripped his capability. Once it catches up, I will re-evaluate.
The Flaming Lips - Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, 2002