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All the way to Key

Written By: - Date published: 11:19 am, September 1st, 2014 - 30 comments
Categories: accountability, brand key, john key, radio - Tags: , , ,

[I see that I have doubled up on a post by Mike – sorry ’bout that! Because I’m hoping to get the transcript done I’ll put this post up anyway, but I refer you to Mike’s post and links.]

National’s involvement with dirty politics goes all the way to Key.

All credit to Guyon Espiner for another hard-hitting interview with Key on Morning Report today. Espiner pressed Key on his links with Slater, and in particular whether he had personally received information from Slater on visits of various people to Dotcom’s mansion. Starting at 3:20 in the audio, Espiner (extracts):

Culture comes from the top, you have allowed a culture to develop where public servants and political opponents are attacked by Whaleoil, using information fed by a cabinet minister, members of your own staff. …

You knew that Jason Ede in your office was passing information to Cameron Slater to damage National opponents, didn’t you. You knew that. …

You are deeply implicated in this to the extent that you yourself have been involved in direct exchanges of information in conversation with Cameron Slater and in February you said that you spoke regularly to him, and that he was the source of the information that your opponents had visited the Dotcom Mansion. …

Was he your source for that story? [many times]

As usual Key tried to evade, deflect and derail the interview, Espiner was having none of it. In the end Key is reduced to:

Well does it matter?

[If anyone works up a better transcript post it in comments and I will update the post.]

Key is up to his neck in dirty politics, and on the occasions that he wasn’t personally involved, his office was. Key is either responsible for his office, or he isn’t, and at the moment he is damned either way.

30 comments on “All the way to Key ”

  1. ianmac 1

    Yes Rob. “Key is either responsible for his office, or he isn’t, and at the moment he is damned either way.”
    Either he is Negligent or he is Complicit. Lets choose.

  2. fambo 2

    I reckon it was the SIS (who inevitably would have been keeping a 24/7 watch on Kim Dotcom’s mansion) who kept Key informed as to who was visiting. I can’t see Cameron Slater or a friend of his doing round the clock surveliance.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      Hah, yes, perhaps that’s why Key gave (effectively) a non-answer to whether it was Slater. He didn’t want to then be drawn on where it *really* came from…

      • Hanswurst 2.1.1

        Highly doubtful. I would imagine that it would be *really* hard to find out if the SIS had provided him with the information, and that it would be more in his interests to state categorically that it wasn’t Slater and then continue to refuse to divulge who it was.

        • Tracey

          Tucker seems to have no comprehension of the difference between speaking to a particular person or their staff, that a discussion with a particular person actually means with their staff.

    • Bill 2.2

      fambo, it’s basically out in the public domain that one of the Dotcom mansion staff was passing info onto Slater.

  3. Tracey 3

    ” well it may be but that wouldnt really matter… If he happened to have some information about that…I might be interested for my own particular reasons, theres nothing wrong with that”

  4. tricledrown 4

    Key was going to hold his ministers to higher standards’ !
    Key should resign immediately!
    He is at the heart of all this no one else!

  5. hoom 5

    “does it matter” yes, it does.
    Its entirely the point that Key is the epitome of a dirty, nasty, Hollow Man ‘comfortable’ with all sorts of corrupt practices & improper behaviour by other Ministers but who pretends to be a clean, nice, caring ‘good guy’.

    And yes, credit to Espiner, I really think that despite his poor previous record he is trying to do better at RNZ.

  6. McFlock 6

    How fucking childish is key?
    Simply repeating “does it matter?” strongly implies three things:

    1. yes, he did get information about his opponents off slater; and
    2. he knows that New Zealanders would be uncomfortable with him doing that; and
    3. he knows or fears that there is evidence to the contrary that might incriminate him if he outright lies about his getting information from a known liar and paid shill.

    I suspect that key’s worried rawshark is holding onto some texts or emails between him and slater – or maybe that odgers will panic again and give another “smoking gun” to the media.

    • politikiwi 6.1

      “I suspect that key’s worried rawshark is holding onto some texts or emails between him and slater ”

      I live in hope that s/he does.

      And I also live in hope that s/he knows what they’re doing when it comes to covering their tracks, because lord knows the GCSB et al will be all over it trying to figure out who this person is (and that would be legal as Slater has lodged a police complaint and the GCSB are allowed to assist with that under their new enabling legislation).

      Tor by itself probably wouldn’t be enough to protect them: There can’t be that many people in NZ using Tor so finding all people accessing Tor from within NZ would give them a fairly limited set of “selectors” to dig into. (We know the NSA trace anyone who’s ever done a DNS lookup on torproject.org (among others) so they’ll have that information fairly readily available.)

      Hopefully rawshark is smart enough to have a VM spun up in Iceland (or somewhere with proper cyber security laws) which they connect to via VPN, then use that to connect to Tor and then back into NZ. That might be enough.

      • Tracey 6.1.1

        I dont think they have anything to implicate Key in the hacked emails

        • politikiwi

          They might – could just be letting him dig the deepest hole possible before burying him in it.

          • Tracey

            So, the media or the hacker would sit on them, until when? The hacker says he has finished with political aspect.

            • politikiwi

              Not sure – I’m only speculating. (And hoping haha.)

              The maximum damage – as Slater knows very well – occurs when you first get a denial that a certain action took place, which you later prove to be a lie.

              Perhaps there’s certain words he’s waiting for Key to say before dropping something? Who knows.

            • disturbed

              Till days before the 20th so as not to give the PM time to slime out again.

  7. RJL 7

    I particularly liked Key’s assertion near the end that if he sacked a minister every time the opposition/media made an allegation about one of Key’s ministers, then he would have to sack them all.

    Quite fucking true and exactly the problem…

  8. Black Lemming 8

    If Keys had admitted 3 weeks ago that after a few beers on holiday in Hawaii ,Warren Tucker had rung him late and he” inadvertantly ” oked the release of the OIA to Slater along with other business ,he could frame it as” Just one of those things” and it may have gone away quickly.

    “.Probably not the best decision but a simple one off ,error of judgement after a happy night on the tiger beer on a palm fringed beach “.Pure Teflon .

    The problem (,as Hooton keeps reiterating ) is that Slater has been Keys attack dog for some 9 years ,so this is unlikely to be an isolated one off incident, in all probability , its part of an corrosive long term relationship .

    Clearly the law of exceptionalism does not apply .What else is there to come out ?

    The national apple, so shiny on the outside ,once cut in half is actually rotten in the core .

  9. the pigman 9

    This was good but clearly Espiner is not quite the searing cross-examiner he believes he is…

    I mean, *full credit* to the guy, but he was hardly velvet-gloved. Presenting his conclusion to Keys in a manner that he can just deny it was a bit lazy.

  10. geoff 10

    Doesn’t the latest Slater/Collins email imply that Collins knew about the SIS OIA??!!??

    So Collins knew about it but Key, the minister of SIS didn’t??

  11. disturbed 11

    “…the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security is Cheryl Gwyn who, up until April 2014, was the Deputy Solicitor-General at Crown Law, the very same Government agency which cleared Warren Tucker’s release of Phil Goff’s briefing notes.”

    Gwyn is compromised here.

    We need to start a petition to demonstrate a public interest to force a full royal independent commission wide powers to investigate all corruption criminal charges now!

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