Making an apology of that kind is like saying "well I'm sorry you're so prickly and sensitive and that my plain talking offended you. But, really, toughen up."
It's also apparently okay for someone representing the nation to use a racist word, because someone else did so once upon a time and was forgiven by the public.
"Paul Holmes effectively used the same term, did actually apologise and the public accepted that."I consider myself a member of the group John Key calls "the public", but I don't recall ever forgiving Paul Holmes for his "cheeky darkie" remark. However, if John Key says I did, then I must have.
I'm not sure how Key would know. He might have been within earshot when I said "I forgive that poor Holmes chap. He's been through enough." But I've only ever been in the same vicinity as John Key twice: once when I saw him crossing the road nearby (before he became all, like, famous and stuff), and once when he and his minders walked right past me in the lobby of my building. I'm pretty sure on both occasions I kept my lips sealed.
So the only other possibility is that I'm talking in my sleep and his men are bugging me. I've no doubt that my highly subversive blogging activities ("Down with that kind of thing! Death to all extremists!") have got the attention of the SIS, and they of course report directly to the PM. On a hunch I ransacked my bedroom in the hope of finding where they'd planted the bug, but all I got for my troubles was an evil glare from my wife.
But I did find a few missing socks and a plastic Lego man my son's been missing for weeks. So thanks to the SIS for that, I guess.
If I am talking in my sleep it seems strange I would be dreaming about Paul Holmes. On the other hand, what other explanation could there be? It also seems strange I would continue to harbour a lingering ill-will towards a man I have supposedly forgiven. Maybe forgiving someone is like taking a course of antibiotics: if you don't complete the entire course, the disease comes back. Perhaps if I'd just avoided all contact with Paul Holmes' work for the full ten day treatment I'd now be an ardent admirer of the man.
All that is by the bye. Key says Holmes has been embraced in a loving way by a public keen to show their affections towards the small wizened one, and Key's word has to be good enough for me.
Quite what Holmes' redemption has to do with Andy Haden, however, is still beyond me. Holmes was the host of a commercial radio show. Haden was appointed by the Government to represent New Zealand, and his job title even has the word "ambassador" in it.
Our ambassadors are supposed to be paragons of dignity and discretion - or at least that is the image we expect them to convey, even if behind closed doors they are ordinary dirty sinful folk just like the rest of us. But they don't let the screen drop like Haden did. A momentary lapse can be forgiven, but Haden's conduct afterwards suggests it was no mere lapse.
One slip, and down the hole we fallIf only.
It seems to take no time at all
A momentary lapse of reason
That binds a life for life
A small regret, you won't forget,
There'll be no sleep in here tonight