You're probably sick to death of all those retrospectives. Every time you pick up a newspaper or glance at a news site you're being bombarded with "best of/worst of 2010" stories.
Well I don't have any "best of" perspective to offer. 2010 has not
been a vintage year for most. The economy continues to slide, our leaders
appear to either not know or care how to arrest this slide, and a succession of
disasters have hit us.
For people in the South Island the year has been
especially awful: first the collapse of the Allan Hubbard house of cards,
followed by the Canterbury earthquake, the Southland storm and then Pike River.
God has not been kindly to those on the Mainland.
The end of 2010 brings the New Years Honours List. There are many worthy
people on this year's list, such as Ray Avery, Alison Holst and the like. Garth George
has also been awarded membership of the New Zealand Order of Merit. He was
probably as surprised as the rest of us. Surely he would have been expecting no more than a
military award this year, after letting Defence Force staff ghost-write one of his columns.
Anyway, I missed out again. If they were giving awards out for services to
snide, sarcastic and bitter blogging you would now be calling me
"sir". Alas, it appears they are not. So I will have to create my own
New Years List.
So here is the inaugural Imperator Fish New Year Dishonours List.
New Zealand Order of the Rotten Fish (NZORF)
The pre-eminent award. Only twenty truly rancid people can at
any time be the holder of this honour. All award recipients are entitled to use
the title "The Truly Awful" before their name. If they don't do so I
God, for services to disasters, both natural and man-made.
Earthquakes in Haiti and Christchurch, Pike River, financial ruination across
the world. If there's trouble He's been there. Shame on you, God, shame on you!
Michael Laws, for services to being the second most repellent
individual in New Zealand.
New Zealand Order of the Slightly Rotten Fish (NZOSRF)
There are three ranks to this order. They are listed below,
from highest to lowest. All award recipients are entitled to use the title
"The Slightly Rancid" before their name.
Grand Poobah (GPNZOSRF)
David Garrett, for services to the promotion of thriller novels by UK
Paul Quinn, for services to unprecedented mediocrity. Not only
did his bill to disenfranchise prisoners almost end up giving
already-disenfranchised prisoners back their vote, but he had nothing
intelligent to say about the proposed law or why it was needed.
Lesser Poobah (LPNZOSRF)
Phil Goff, for services to not being noticed except when screwing up.
Dame Poobah (DPNZOSRF)
Pansy Wong, for services to China-New Zealand business relations. Did she, didn't she? We'll probably never know whether she broke the rules. Most of us never really cared and have almost forgotten her already.
Companion of the Order of the Despot (COD)
This award goes to the person or persons who most threatened our democracy
and the rule of law.
Gerry Brownlee, for services to the overnight suspension of
constitutional arrangements that were developed carefully and gradually over
centuries of conflict, crisis and civil war. But as if that was not enough, as
Leader of the House showing contempt towards the institution by the
unprecedented use of urgency measures to push through non-urgent legislation.
For these stellar achievements Fairfax Media
ranked him second best in their Lawmaker of the Year ratings. Jesus wept.
Officer of the Order of the Hobbit (OOH)
This honour is given to those who have contributed significantly to New
Zealand's reputation as the home of epic fantasy.
Don Brash, for services to fantasy writing. Personally I
found Mr Tolkein's Mordor only slightly more frightening than the fantasy world
Brash created in his last 2025 Taskforce report.
Chris Carter, for services to the entire fantasy genre. Carter
attempted a one-man coup against Phil Goff and then expressed astonishment that
his gross disloyalty was punished. Think Saruman, but a slightly dopier
version, and without any special powers.
Ian Wishart, for services to science fiction. Climate change denial,
creationism and creating mine rescue plans are all in a day's work for our Ian.
Member of the Order of the Ostrich (MOO)
This award goes to those prominent persons whose response to difficulty has
been to place their heads in the sand.
John Key, for services to doing nothing. His ability keep smiling
while our economy continues its gradual descent down the OECD rankings will
surely see him re-elected in 2011. If blandness and lack of imagination are
virtues in our leaders, then surely Key is one of the greatest. When asked by the Herald what his favourite hobby was, he said "golf". Yawn.
Officer of the Order of Self Entitlement (OOSE)
Awarded to those outstanding persons who hold themselves out as being more
important than the rest of us.
Mark Hotchin, for services to the lifestyles of the rich and
famous. Hotchin continues to have the lifestyle of a Saudi prince while those
he screwed over continue to suffer.
Paul Henry, for services to thinking he should be able to say
what he likes, however odious, and that we who pay his salary should just shut up.
Member of the Order of the Machine Gun (MOMG)
A military award, for reckless bravery in the field of battle.
Peter Hodgson, for services to finally landing a hit. If you
spray enough bullets around you'll eventually hit your target. You'll probably
also end up putting a few bullets into those close to you, and into your own
Rank Hypocrisy Medal (RHM)
For having principles, and then putting them aside then they don't suit.
Garth McVicar, for services to holy war against criminal
offenders, unless they stab to death brown kids, or steal the identity of a