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Banks’ story coming apart; Key too weak to act

Written By: - Date published: 7:49 am, September 14th, 2012 - 61 comments
Categories: john banks, john key - Tags:

John Banks is trying to blame the Police for the fact that the transcript of his 3-hour interview with detectives over his campaign donations was held back from the OIA release of the Police file. Another lie. It was Banks’ choice for the transcript to be withheld. So much for “nothing to fear, nothing to hide”. And, now, his press sec’s dropped him further in it.

Banks’ story has always depended on the absurd defence that he signed his donations return without reading it so he didn’t know it was a pack of lies, and that’s somehow OK – despite the fact that the act of signing a statutory document is the act of confirming that it is true and correct.

Haivng already lied to the meida saying “Mr Banks is not responsible for what the police have released”, his press secretary blew a massive hole in his defence, saying: “John Banks did read the document”. Whoops.

Of course, she’s started to try to back-track now, instead saying that Banks’ campaign treasury had only “gone over” the declaration with him (which still sounds a lot like reading – guided, informed reading even).

But the truth is out.

Banks knew full well that his donation form was incorrectly listing donations from SkyCity, Dotcom, and very probably all his other big donors as anonymous when he knew who had given him the money.

Key, of course, is being shown to be a complete paper tiger by all this. Any Prime Minister should have sacked any minister in this situation long ago. But Key can’t. He is weak. Banks is in charge, not Key.

61 comments on “Banks’ story coming apart; Key too weak to act”

  1. Nick 1

    I’ve written to John Key about this issue. Perhaps others who feel strongly should do the same.

    • Grace 1.1

      I’ve written to Shonkey Johnkey about Porky Bennett being dismissed for her privacy breach, the same way her WINZ staff who did the same were fired. I asked questions, germane, relevant and to the point. None were answered.

      Also about Parata’s shameful privacy breach to find the private citizens who had written to her regarding class sizes were teachers, and replying to their Boards. I asked how Nick Smith could be fired for a letter (though he needed to go lol) yet she could breach people’s privacy and suffer no consequence. Again, more questions. None were answered.

      I got a ‘Thank you for your views.’ style of reply.

      He’ll tell YOU to fuck off and all, I’m afraid. They aren’t interested in what we have to say.

      • To be perfectly fair, what makes you think John Key is going to specifically answer YOUR email when he probably receives 100’s everyday.
        Jesus man, I don’t answer every email I receive otherwise I’d have no time for anything else

        • Tiger Mountain 1.1.1.1

          Sad, sad, sad Contrarian. Even Apple’s Steve Jobs deigned to personally answer the odd email/text sent to him. ShonKey’s highly managed style is the political version of the rubgy league friendly face fend. Do not engage, do not have genuine dialogue, control is all.

          • TheContrarian 1.1.1.1.1

            So John Key is beholden to send YOU a personal email in response because Steve jobs answered “the odd email/text sent to him.”?

            Hubris much? 

            • Te Reo Putake 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Comprehension fail, TC. Tiger Mountain has given an example of a way busier and more powerful person than Key who did make the effort to reply to emails.
               
              The point TM was making and you failed to understand is that it’s not time constraints that stop Key replying, it’s a deliberate strategy to not engage with the people who try to engage with him. That, and repeated lying to a complacent media.

              • Of course it is. John key took one look at your email and said “Oh no! Delete!”

                Like I said, hubris much?

                I am going to send an email to Hone Harawira right now in fact and damn it, I better receive a reply from the man himself!  

                • Grace

                  You sound angry at me for writing to my PM to express my views.

                  It’s not hubris to expect a reply – a thoughtful, reasoned reply. It’s called courtesy.

                  Though you are right – he won’t engage with people who have something to say, or point out flaws in his house of cards.

                  • “You sound angry at me for writing to my PM to express my views.”

                    Not angry at all, why would I be angry?

                    There are quite possibly 100’s of people writing letters and sending emails to ministers and it is hubris to demand a reply, personally, as if you are the only one who demands a response.  

                    • Grace

                      Your tone sounds as if I am filled with my own self-importance to expect a reply.

                      I have written to MPs for many, many years and have received a reply to each and every letter I have ever written.

                      This is the first time I’ve received a ‘thank you, fuck off’. In over 20 years of written correspondence.

                      I felt moved to mention it, because it’s the first time it’s ever happened. That’s all.

                      I still do not believe it’s hubris to expect a reasoned reply from a Minister of the Crown when writing to them. What else are their staff for? Do you have figures for your ‘quite possibly 100s’ because in my experience, very few people take the time to physically write to their MPs or PM, despite the fact that it’s free to do so.

                    • What kind of response did you expect?

                      I said ‘quite possibly 100’s’ and that would count as emails. No, I cannot give you hard evidence sorry but i used to work for a party in government many years ago and was good friends (am still good friends) with a ministers media/communications manager and huge volume of correspondence came through. Just because it was in the form of email as opposed to hard copy doesn’t change that fact. Too many to answer in a personal fashion, one or two maybe, but not all. 

                    • McFlock

                      edit:
                      argh, I did a reply, but should have known that any thread with you in it would go forever and just be a derail. Trool.

                    • Ministers have staffs who can handle enquiries on their behalf if necessary. At the very least Grace deserved one of these replies in John Key’s name. I’ve gotten detailed letters going over policy points when I’ve sent single-paragraph enquiries to Labour MPs as to why they supported particular policies, even very important and busy MPs. I don’t see why you think the PM should be any different.

              • shorts

                not sure anyone would want a steve jobs styled reply from our PM given his penchant for the word idiot et al

                Saying that emails or preferably old skool letters to those who willing hurt our people is a tool of the people and should be used to show ones displeasure

            • Shane Gallagher 1.1.1.1.1.2

              The PM has a huge staff who do a lot of this work – or are supposed to. You forget who serves whom in a democracy. We are supposed to be served by our politicians – not the other way around. If someone goes to the trouble of asking reasonable questions then they have the right as a citizen of this country and an equal to the PM to be answered.

              But it would appear that you would much prefer to live in a totalitarian state where the leaders can treat their subjects with contempt. That is fine. Good luck in your new country. I would prefer to stay here and teach these guys some manners.

              • Awesome, I look forward to this new country where the elected officials do nothing but reply to letters.

                “But it would appear that you would much prefer to live in a totalitarian state where the leaders can treat their subjects with contempt.”

                Don’t be fucking stupid, not expecting the PM to personally answer every single letter =/=  totalitarianism

                • crashcart

                  I love it when People selectively quote. He quite clearly stated that the PM “has a huge staff to do this”. Now I don’t know if it is huge but its a long bloody shot from personal response expected. When you write to the offices of an MP you expect a well reasoned response to the issues you raise. If it is simple enough for a staffer to reply to then they can. If it is beyond them then they should be forwarding it to the minister who should then respond. They get paid a shit load more than the average person who would raise these concerns. I don’t think it is too much to expect them to put in a couple of hours to answer the more unique ones.

                  • How do you know they don’t answer the more unique ones? Grace got an answer and she didn’t like it – tough. You can’t please everyone.

                    “I don’t think it is too much to expect them to put in a couple of hours to answer the more unique ones.”

                    And perhaps that wasn’t Graces and someone else got the lengthy reply instead.

                    • crashcart

                      So you are happy that you miss quoted the person you were replying to to build a straw man argument, good.

                      As to how do I know they were the more unique ones. Because she didn’t get a response to the questions at all. She got a generic thanks go away response as opposed to anything directly relating to questions. If her questions were simple ones that had been seen a hundred times it is even worse that a staffer didn’t take the time to give the same reply they have given a hundred times. They would surely have a form letter to answer them if there was any form of efficency. That you couldn’t complain about. you might not like it but you got answers. The fact there were no answers say either:

                      a) No one read it and she got a standard letter they send back to every one,
                      b)Someone read it and didn’t think she was worth answering properly.
                      c)Someone read it and couldn’t answer so forwarded it on to the PM who then instructed a worthless response be given.

                      Neither option is acceptable. Hell as stated lower down even if it had been an answer saying we will look into this and get back to you there woul be no real reason to complain.

                    • I look forward to this utopia where people get exactly the response they want from every piece of correspondence.

                      Basically your comments amount to:

                      “I don’t know how many fucking letters they got nor that content of them but for fucks sake it is totally unacceptable that this particular letter didn’t get the response the author intended so fuck you John Key”

                      Like i said below, I sent correspondence to Hone Harawira a little over an hour ago and he better fucking answer my questions. You’d agree that he better answer them, eh? Or else i imagine you’ll be horrified.

              • Polish Pride

                “The PM has a huge staff who do a lot of this work – or are supposed to. You forget who serves whom in a democracy. We are supposed to be served by our politicians – not the other way around”

                Correct in theory but it has not been that way in practice for a very long time (if in fact it ever was). You are unfortunately deluding yourself if you think that this is how the system works. We do not have democracy. We ‘Representative Democracy’ and at best this only gives the illusion of democracy to the voting public. It is a sham.
                You vote on the policies that the political parties want to put forward and thats all you have to choose from. Under our present system political parties can and do go against the will of the people and there’s not a damn thing you can do about it. Yeah sure you can vote them out in 3 years time but then the next party can do exactly the same thing.
                It is because you get this vote once every 3 years on policies that have largely been predetermined that may or may not be implenmented, that many still believe that the illusion is democracy.
                It’s not.

                Worse still is that most on here think that ‘If only the Left were in power, then the problems would get fixed’. They won’t. The left have been in power many times. Did the big ticket items get fixed? Do we no longer have war, was there no poverty before National got in, If you believe in climate change, was that fixed? If the Left were in would the economy magically recover? The same holds true on all of these arguements for the Right also. Take out ‘Left’ and insert ‘Right’ and the same holds true for all examples.
                Unfortunately the problems are systemic. All we do under this system with the illusion of democracy is shift a couple of degrees to the right and then a couple back to the left at a guess on average every 6 or so years. The Left vs Right paradigm is unfortunately part of the system and because the problems that stop us fixing the real problems we face as a society are systemic… They will never get fixed.
                It is not that they can’t be fixed. They can. But you can’t expect to continue doing the same things and expect vastly different results.
                They are only fixable under a new system. One that is a real democracy, a true democracy. A direct democracy. But this will never happen whilst people continue to vote and partake in the current system.
                While people continue to do this political parties and politicians with their own agendas can make the arguement that the system works and is supported by the people.
                The problems as a result will contnue to remain unresolved

            • Plastic Tolstoy 1.1.1.1.1.3

              “So John Key is beholden to send YOU a personal email in response because Steve jobs answered “the odd email/text sent to him.”?”

              As John Key’s employer I would fully expect him to reply, what employer wouldn’t?

        • Grace 1.1.1.2

          Actually, it was a written letter. And whether it was an email or not, as our Ministers, they are bound to answer their correspondence, I would have thought. Part of us electing them?

          I receive a ‘letter’ back. It said ‘thank you, now go away.’ Pretty much.

          So yes, they ought to answer people’s mail.

          Grace

          • Lanthanide 1.1.1.2.1

            Sounds like you got a reply. I don’t know that you can really complain about the content of it.

            • Grace 1.1.1.2.1.1

              Oh please. See my other comment further down – it was a brushoff and not one question I asked was answered.

              • Lanthanide

                Yeah, but what sort of answers would you have gotten to the questions anyway? Anodyne pre-fabricated responses that completely ignore the thrust of the actual question and not actually told you anything you wanted to know?

                What’s better, to get a simple “we don’t care about you” response or some mealy-mouthed waffle that doesn’t mean anything that amounts to the same?

          • TheContrarian 1.1.1.2.2

            A couple years back I wrote a letter to Jeanette Fitzsimmons and received the same ‘thank you, now go away.’  style response.

            Bitch.  

          • David H 1.1.1.2.3

            I wrote to Shearer, Cunliffe Lockwood Smith, Tariana Turia and others and only Tariana replied, and it was written by her. I would imagine due to what was said.

            • TheContrarian 1.1.1.2.3.1

              Excellent, I look forward to Crashcart, Grace and TRP so express the same horror at this as they are leveling at Key for not properly answering Grace’s letter

              • Yes, they should at least briefly address your points. I don’t expect them to answer every single query, but even a “We can’t answer this question due to [privacy act/state secrets/forthcoming public announcement/etc…]” is expected for a question, and it’s wrong if their staff don’t at least give you a reason for your brush-off, regardless of who does it.

        • Lanthanide 1.1.1.3

          I emailed Stephen Joyce with some suggestions when he was the tertiary education minister. I got a reply from his secretary within a couple of days saying that my email would be answered when the time was available. I got a reply about 3-4 months later.

        • Enough is Enough 1.1.1.4

          It is John Key’s job to respond to query’s from the electorate.

          If he can’t fulfil that simple function he should resign

        • Mary 1.1.1.5

          “To be perfectly fair, what makes you think John Key is going to specifically answer YOUR email when he probably receives 100′s everyday.”

          You can ignore emails because you’re allowed to. Key and Bennett and other government people aren’t. It’s called the OIA. Ask a question and it has to be answered. If it’s not, complain. Provided we ask our questions in the right way government and politicians can’t just tell people to fuck off. Of course they always try to but it’s up us not to let them. Government’s arrogance towards the people who dare to use proper and legal avenues designed to keep our politicians honest are driven by arrogant attitudes like yours.

          • TheContrarian 1.1.1.5.1

            Sending a letter is not the equivalent of an OIA, guy.

            How arrogant of me to suggest that having a ‘waaaa’ because you didn’t receive the response to wanted. i think it is arrogant to someone suggest that your correspondence must take precedent over all others.

            I sent an email to Hone Harawira over an hour ago that was calm, thoughtful and asked a pertinent  question. I have yet to receive any response. I’ll keep you posted.

            • crashcart 1.1.1.5.1.1

              I’ll give you your dues man. You have totally managed to turn a post about Banks and Key being worthless in regards to setting a higher standard of his ministers into a debate about who should answer emials. Do you have an opinion at all on the primary point of the post or are you simply her to derail a thread?

              • Te Reo Putake

                It’s the latter, Crashcart. TheConservative gave the game away in a reply above:
                 
                ” … i used to work for a party in government many years ago and was good friends (am still good friends) with a ministers media/communications manager…”

                • he he he. 

                  Too easy…

                  Oh yeah and my opinion on the topic at hand was Banks should be fucking dropped.

                  • Te Reo Putake

                    T :roll:

                  • bbfloyd

                    Ah.. little cont is at it again…..No no… don’t run away little fawn…. Oh… you completed your “cycle”……never mind, I’m sure you will give me many more easy targets in the futore……. Hope this “cycle” was satisfying…..

                    With a wrist action like that, you should put yourself up for national party selection next time around……

                    John Banks is a lying’ twisted individual not fit to represent the rodent population of Epsom(the rats & mice, not the humans)….. And johnny sparkles is a craven coward hiding behind a wall of Uriah Heep impersonators who depend on political patronage for their careers…..

                    What sort of halfwit lets himself become beholden to lowlife like John Banks……Only lower life… that’s who…..

            • Mary 1.1.1.5.1.2

              “Sending a letter is not the equivalent of an OIA”

              If the letter goes to government and asks a question then it is, and the complaint above was about Key not answering questions.

              Hone doesn’t have to respond to you because he’s not in government, and given your lack of understanding about probably most things he’s likely not to, and quite rightly so I’d say.

              Not only that, I’m pretty sure that after reading your letter he’d think to himself “what stupid WMF” and again he’d be quite right to do so.

              Best of luck.

              • See here: http://www.justice.govt.nz/publications/global-publications/o/official-information-your-right-to-know and here: http://www.howtolaw.co.nz/make-an-official-information-request-xidp392288.html

                In particular:

                If the information you want is personal information about you, your request is governed by the PRIVACY ACT 1993 rather than the OFFICIAL INFORMATION ACT 1982. In practice, this distinction is unimportant when you make your request, because you don’t have to refer to any particular Act. But the distinction becomes important if your request is refused. If your request is for personal information your means of challenging a refusal is to complain to the Privacy Commissioner (see How to complain to the Privacy Commissioner. If your request was for other information, you complain to the Ombudsmen (see below, “What can I do if my request is refused?”).

                Emphasis mine.

                This is to say, all requests of a ministry, department, SOE, DHB, university, or any other crown entity governed by the OIA must be answered in a manner compliant with the OIA, and inadequate responses can be taken to the Office of the Ombudsman even if the name “Official Information Act” is never mentioned. Note that information held by a ministry is different to information held by a minister in their capacity as an MP, and not subject to the OIA, and as such some questions to a minister or to the Prime Minister will not be covered under the OIA- those they can refuse to answer without repurcussion, legally speaking, although it’s bad practice not to at least give you a good reason why they are not answering.

                As Hone has no associated ministry he’s actually under no legal obligation to answer requests, as MPs are specifically excluded from the OIA. However, it is also a significant part of an MP’s job to handle enquiries, so anything reasonable should be answered.

        • Tiresias 1.1.1.6

          Unlike you the Prime Minister has a number of staff paid at the public expense to read all communications to him, reply to them with varying degrees of blandness according to their self-perceived ability to represent the PM’s expressed views on the subject matter and refer to him any they decide warrants his personal attention according to his instructions to them on the point.

    • Jim Nald 1.2

      If Nick as well as Grace have written to John Key on this issue, and in addition to any letters that others have written or will write, how about the following as a suggestion?

      Write an open letter to John Key, circulate and/or post it on an appropriate website for others to add their names and also indicate that after a week, that open letter from a large group of people throughout the country will be sent to him.

      Perhaps, whether as part of or instead of that, a website like http://avaaz.org/en/ can be used to convey the message from the wider public.

      I would be happy to add my name to such a collective way of communicating with John Key :-)

    • Dr Terry 1.3

      Key is not “weak”in the usual sense, he has a character and/or personality disorder which permits him to stand by Banks whatever.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.4

      Don’t write, make it an OIA instead. You’ll have to phrase it in some sort of legalese associated with laws and rules of the house but he’d have to answer and the answer would be public.

  2. captain hook 2

    the national party has adopted dishonesty as a policy.
    haven’t they?

  3. ianmac 3

    It would be interesting to know who decided on the cup of tea for Banks and Key. Joyce perhaps? Imagine the retrospective examination of that decision. Consider all that has gone wrong since then -but of course Key/Joyce will blame it all on the Labour Party.

    • crashcart 3.1

      Yea aparently the police report, Banks lying about giving permition to release his statement and the media questions since are all a politically motivated beat up acording to JK. Thank goodness National have a clean slate when it comes to political beat ups.

    • Chris 3.2

      john banks is keys man-date.

  4. mike 4

    “Police chief media adviser Grant Ogilvie said police sought permission from those interviewed before releasing statements. “The disclosures that were made were based on consent of those asked. That includes Mr Banks.”

    Mr Banks said it was the police who decided keep his statement under wraps.”

    O what a wicked web…The man is just swimming around in a pool of sh*t.

    “Prime Minister John Key said yesterday he would stand by Mr Banks and blamed the Labour Party for a “politically motivated attack”. He said Mr Banks had not broken the law.

    Labour deputy leader Grant Robertson said the Prime Minister was wrong and police found Mr Banks did break the law but could not be prosecuted because of a six-month time limit.”

    John Key is running out of lines. The ‘that criticism is politically motivated’ one is really starting to get old. Is the Labour party hoping to score a political blow here? Of course they are, but that doesn’t invalidate their complaint.

    This govt is eager to hunt down benes trying to game the system, but when one of their own gets caught with their pants down doing exactly that the spin comes flying.

  5. Chris 5

    John Key is a lonely voice in the wilderness. banks has been judged “not guilty”Nobody believes that probably even wizzkey, but he has to support his man-date!Just fyi somebody on Cue suggested that banks always looks like he has lost his care-giver.Well,I thought it was funny.

  6. mike ray 6

    you need a stratagem to take on a corrupt mainstream media who are little more than nationals propaganda arm . and labours leader needs to grow some balls keys a straw man created by the media , he is no speaker that’s for sure . its welfare for the rich under this government . they are corporatist not capitalists corporatist .MR KEY AND HIS MEN ARE CORPORATE SOCIALISTS THEY BE LEAVE IN WELFARE FOR THE RICH , BAIL OUTS FOR THE RICH , THEY WANT TO PRIVATIZE THE PROFITS AND SOCIALIZE THE LOSSES SO YOU AND I PAY . THAT’S WHAT THEY ARE ALL ABOUT . HOW DO THEY PROVIDE WELFARE FOR THE 1%TERS WELFARE VIA TAX CUTS THAT NEVER CREATED ONE JOB , ASSET SALES THAT DO NOT COMPENSATE THE WORKING POOR WHOSE TAX MONEY HELPED BUILD THOSE ASSETS AND THOSE WHO CAN NOT AFFORD TO BYE THE ASSETS WILL NOT BE COMPENSATED IN ANYWAY EVEN THOUGH THEY OWN THEM . THAT’S WHY ITS THEFT THE CITIZENS AS A WHOLE OF NZ SHOULD BE TAKING THE GOVERNMENT TO COURT TO STOP THESE ASSETS FROM BEING STOLEN .food for thought .

    [lprent: In mty opinion messages that require SHOUTing usually can’t stand on their own merits… They are just noise and noise begets more noise. Use it with caution because I will reduce the volume one way or another – as you can see. Now people can read your yelling if they want to. They just have to do it with a magnifier ]

  7. Dv 7

    mile
    lpent wont like all those block capitals.

    [lprent: prophetic… ]

  8. Treetop 8

    Banks cannot have what he said to the police released incase he is caught out. All it would take is for information to be matched up (what you told the police differs to what you have said publicly or in the house).

    I am interested to know if Marshall is able to inform the police minister if Marshall knows that Banks has given at least two versions/answers?

    Can the opposition ask for an inquiry to match up statements made by Banks to the police and what Banks has said publicly or in the house?

  9. Tiresias 9

    Item heading in the Guardian today: “Politics takes away your integrity. People lie to get what they want”. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/sep/14/vicky-pryce-chris-huhne-split

    Quelle surprise.

    Key’s defence is that Banks didn’t break the law. Apart from that being questionable, the most that can be said is that he didn’t break the letter of the law. I believe it’s way beyond any reasonable doubt that he knowingly broke the spirit and intent of the law. Anyone with an ounce of integrity in Banks’ position would resign and a Prime Minister with the slightest hint of a belief not only that integrity should exist in his Ministers but should be seen to exist, would have Banks’ balls in a vice and be tightening the jaws until he agrees to resign.

    Fortunately I’m sure I’m far from being alone in judging a politician not by what they say but by what they do. Or don’t do. Although in the case of both Banks and Key the whole squalid episode is no more than a another utterly predictable demonstration of a total lack of integrity in two increasingly undistinguished political careers.

    • RedLogix 9.1

      The point here is simple.

      Shearer must stand up in Parliament and demand from Key whether or not it is now acceptable for his Ministers to be caught in a criminal act, and then to lie in order to cover it up.

      If Key accepts that Banks has lied then Shearer must get Key to confirm that lying is now acceptable from any and all of his Ministers.

      If Key denies that Banks lied then Key has lied to the House. And the matter should be taken to the Speaker.

      This is the kind of thing that is the JOB of the Leader of the Opposition. Failure is complicity.

  10. xtasy 10

    Today’s Q+A program left a fair few viewers and followers a bit confused and “flabberghasted”. I do not always watch that program, but at times it is worth having a look into it, as it does easily beat the Steven Joyce “The Nation” program on the other channel of Freeview.

    So today I was stung again, with some astonishing observations. I remember well the BSE crisis in Europe quite some years ago, and I had thought the “disease” had more or less been dealt to, UNTIL I saw that program today.

    Now is it a new “selective memory syndrome”, a “partially marginalised brain function disorder”, or is it the good old fashioned “blinker me for convenience” condition? It may have been genuine despite of these hypothetical diagnosis attempts, but how can one otherwise explain the fact, that a PM sees no need to read a widely publicised, convincing and revealing police report on one of his ministers?

    How can a PM of a smallish, supposedly so “clean and green”, “100 per cent pure”, I suppose also “BSE free” country like NZ Aoteaoroa fall into a behavioural condition, where he dares to say, it is not really relevant whether someone tells the truth or not, it is all his choice, who he may have, or may not have, some inclination to have “faith in” (or no lack thereof in)?. He simply stated: “I accept the minister at his word”.

    Wonder, wonder, wonder, so we have this happening here, I ask, is NZ a truly BSE free zone? Makes governing very easy like this. Had a “black out last night?” “Noo, I accept MY own word”.

    http://www.emedicinehealth.com/mad_cow_disease_and_variant_creutzfeldt-jakob/article_em.htm

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