Via Radio New Zealand:
Helen Clark has congratulated Portugal’s Antonio Guterres as the “clear winner” in the selection for next United Nations Secretary-General.
The former Portuguese prime minister is poised to take up the role after none of the five UN Security Council veto powers voted against him in a sixth secret ballot, diplomats said.
Helen Clark ended up fifth overall but three of the permanent Security Council members voted against her, effectively vetoing her selection.
In a statement, Miss Clark thanked everyone who who supported her campaign and said she deeply appreciated the backing from Prime Minister John Key, the the government and the public.
Domestically the big winner in all this is Key, who got to demonstrate to a couple hundred thousand female swing-voters what a progressive, balanced women-leader-supporting, generally great guy he is. It’s conventional wisdom on the left that Key et al are morons, and the left is morally and intellectually superior, and I’m not sure how this squares with Key and his party constantly doing very smart things, and the left’s parties and leaders mostly, consistently being pretty dumb. But we have all those withering take-downs of neoliberalism and books on Gramsci! It’s almost as if we congratulate ourselves on metrics that have nothing to do with success in modern democratic contests.