Monday, June 29, 2009


I have a lot of interesting* stuff to blog about but most it is going to have to wait, because I found out about the Readers Digest New Zealand's Most Trusted People 2009 survey and I need to have a big, high-handed rant. It's a bit superior and arrogant. Just pretend it's coming from Onesie Woman. Or, if you like, skip it - I'll write something that isn't this tomorrow. Maybe you could skim read it, though, because otherwise you won't understand all the allusions I'll be making in years to come.

The top 10 most trusted people in the country are mostly sportspeople.

Out of the top ten most trusted, number one is SAS soldier Corporal Bill Apiata, VC. I am pretty fine with that. He had a lot of media coverage for getting medals and being an all-round stand-up guy and that is fine. He was the most trusted guy last year as well - he has been very humble, almost shy, in the media, and I trust him. Corporal A got my back. (We are definitely allowed to trust him more than we trust the Queen, who comes in at number 19. She is hardly ever here anyway.)

However, 8 of the other 9 people in the top ten are sportspeople (although one of them is also, according to the list, a scientist), which is - I'm sorry, but it really is - preposterous.
As a (possibly borderline retarded) country of drooling, couchbound individuals, we trust the wholesome blonde twins who are very good at rowing more than we trust not only our Governer-General, who ranks 23rd on the list, but our Prime Minister, who comes in at a lowly 53 (one place below our former PM). I mean, I like sportspeople - actually that's a lie, they make me feel inadequate and I have no idea why they spend so much time doing such pointless stuff - but I don't always agree with people trusting them just because they seem nice and can throw a ball a heckuva long way. That being said, I can kind of see why it happens. Not, you know, a whole 50 people's worth of trust more than the Prime Minister, but a little bit.

We trust some really unqualified people more than we trust our Chief Justice.

Who, you may ask, is the final person in the top ten? Oh, that's Margaret Mahy, beloved children's author and convicted drunk driver. I mean, beloved children's author! We are completely right to trust her more than we trust our High Court Chief Justice (ranked 35). After all, he may be the Chief Justice, but why does that mean we should trust him any more than bland popera starlet Hayley Westenra (17), all-around nice guy golfer Michael Campbell (26), or has-been 80s musicians Neil Finn, Tim Finn and Dave Dobbyn (28, 30 and 33, respectively)? We trust the man responsible for hurking up the musical turd that is 'Loyal' more than we trust THE NEW ZEALAND HIGH COURT CHIEF JUSTICE. (Oh, also the Prime Minister, who for someone that got a large chunk of the vote is turning out to be pretty freakin' untrustworthy.)

Other people who Should Have Done Better include the Solicitor-General (54) and the Reserve Bank Governor (58), both of whom have a remarkable amount of power for people less trustworthy than Keisha Castle-Hughes (49), actress, teen mother and...humanitarian? I don't know, but surely actress/teen mother wouldn't be enough to make you more trusted than the Reserve Bank Gov- OH WAIT.

It's amazing that we trust these people at all.

- Peter Hillary, number 28. He is the son of Sir Edmund Hillary, a NZer and the first man to reach the top of Mt Everest. In true NZ fashion Sir Ed, upon reaching the top, declared that he had "knocked the bugger off." Peter Hillary, while not as well-spoken as his father, has also climbed a lot of mountains which, while it is admirable, doesn't necessarily make a person trustworthy. It kind of just makes them someone who's good at climbing mountains, and, more importantly, someone who hasn't just, in a moment of boredom, idly considered what it would be like to eat the corpse of a dead friend; he probably has a map of the human body memorised. With the tender bits marked in. It also makes them someone who is kind of scooting along on their father's fame just that little bit. Yes, yes, I know. He's a great guy. I'm a dick. Sigh. I'll make the list next year.

- AJ Hackett, number 38. He is listed as a 'tourism entrepreneur' but would be more accurately referred to as 'the man who invented the bungee jump, then made a shitload of money from it.' Here is a brief impression of AJ Hackett. "Do you trust me? Jump off a bridge with this rope tied around your ankles. OK yes, there's a 1 in 260 chance of dying** but THAT'S WHY IT'S FUN." Just another guy who turned an ancient tribal deathtrap into a money-making venture (whoops, 'adventure tourism experience') and who we trust more than the Prime Minister. (But less than the Queen, which is, I suppose, something.)

- Robbie Deans, number 43. Robbie starts out pretty well. He was an All Black (2 of our top 10 most trusted are, so presumably this is A Good Thing) and then, when he got too I guess crappy and old to be an AB anymore he went and coached the Crusaders, who were the best provincial rugby team in the country for quite some time. Good old Robbie. What a decent bloke.

Anyway, while he was coaching the Crusaders they won more matches than they had under anyone else, and so someone suggested he might like to go and be assistant coach to the All Blacks, and he was good at that as well. There were murmurs that he might even be the next head All Blacks coach, or whatever they call the guy who isn't the assistant coach. Good old Robbie! What a decent bloke!

And. Then. He. Went. And. Coached. Fucking. Australia. Yes. The guy who had been playing rugby for NZ, coaching NZ teams and generally being pretty freakin' patriotic on the rugby front jumped the ditch to hone the skills of arch-rivals Australia's national team. And yet, we still trust him more than we trust the Prime Minister. This man would obviously sell his own grandmother. What kind of morons are we?

And now it is time for my favourite.

Anyone who knows about David Bain may be slightly surprised to hear that he is the nation's 70th most trusted person. David Bain. Apparently he is more trustworthy than deputy Prime Minister Bill English who has, incidentally, never even been accused of killing his entire family, let alone convicted.

Granted, David Bain - after appealing unsuccessfully 5 times - was finally given a retrial in which his conviction was quashed because the police had mishandled the now 15-year-old evidence (they weren't being naughty, just incompetent). However it was totally a case of 'innocent because we can't prove it' rather than 'innocent because omg what a miscarriage of justice this man has the gentle soul of a child.'

OK, New Zealand, I understand that maybe you don't like the Deputy Prime Minister's policies. I understand that maybe you think the Opposition leader, number 73, doesn't have the best ideas to run the country. I understand that maybe you just don't trust politicians (9 of the 14 unfortunates ranked below David Bain are political figures) but do you think that maybe, just maybe, you could bring yourself to admit that you trust them more than a man who quite probably killed his family?

No? Oh well that's OK then.

Come on, New Zealand, what the fuck is wrong with you?

Dear everyone who took part in that survey: please engage your cobwebbed brain next time you fill in a brief questionnaire, because quite frankly you are making our country look fucking retarded.

That is all.

*what passes for interesting on this blog - 'boring' with a large fake mustache

** this is a real statistic - 1 in 262 jumps in America end in death, according to the internet


Brooke said...

LOL! I strongly suspect two things were at play when people were doing this survey: 1. No one gave people a blank piece of paper and asked them to list 100 people they trusted (otherwise 'mum', and 'my husband' would probably have come up a bit more) - they listed 100 well-known NZers and asked folk to rank them. This is when number 2 happened (pun not intended but I'm totally leaving it): People ranked people in order of how much they liked them, nothing to do with actual trust. Also I strongly suspect David Bain was both included in the survey and voted highly just for the lulz ('oh haha wouldn't it be funny if I said I trusted a possible killer more than the PM'). Those surveys are totally meaningless. Sure you might be able to pin down your top 5 most trusted people, maybe even ten, but 100 spots? That's just stupid.
But good for a laugh (and a rant!) :P

Kaileigh said...

Very interesting. I would be afraid to read it if there was one for who America trusts most... maybe there already is one... not sure.

Holly said...

I'll leave an intelligent comment on this post later, but right now I just have to say that someone found my blog by typing: "today is my birthday" ally "101 list" into Google. It amuses me greatly that I showed up in this search, but you did not!? o.O

Baglady said...

5 appeals? Crikey. He really was trying wasn't he? Well he was eventually.

Sorry. Other than that I can't usefully comment on your blogpost because I don't know who any of these people are.

Except Crowded House.

wv - reterr - when you're not quite sure whether you should come back or not.

Darnielle said...

I trust David Bain more than Bill English. John Key is the man, but Bill English is slimy.

This list just goes to show that New Zealanders are pretty damn stupid... but at least we're not as stupid as Americans.

Charlie said...

HAHA - When you read the list - and see David Bain - alleged murderer on the list of NZ 85 most trusted people list it makes a mockery of the whole thing, shame on you reader's digest, shame on you....

Maybe people trust sports people because they come across a bit simple, so seem much more trustworthy than say politicians. They should ask more specific question like - who would you trust to watch your bags? who would you trust to look after you children/pets? Who would you trust to look after you family while playing with firearms...?

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