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Andrew Little – principled politician

Written By: - Date published: 11:35 am, February 4th, 2015 - 302 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, john key, labour, national - Tags:

Andrew Little

If you ever needed to see the difference between Labour and National then Labour’s handling of the issues surrounding Mike Sabin provides a perfect example.

One of the issues of significance is when did John Key learn about Mike Sabin’s difficulties.  If he knew before the election the question will be why was Sabin reselected and why he was offered the chair of the Law and Order select committee.  After all the media knew about an allegation of assault before the election and had asked questions of Key’s office.

Initially Key declined to say when he first knew of Sabin’s difficulties.  When asked on Friday January 30 he declined to answer this question.  Then on Monday he said that he knew Sabin was “facing personal and family issues” in mid December.  Then he said it was “early December“.  Then on February 3 he said he found out about the “issues” on December 1.

Andrew Little said yesterday morning that he had heard about the issues in late  November, shortly after he became leader.  He was confirmed leader on November 18.  When interviewed he was at a Labour Caucus retreat and did not have the details  with him.  He said that he was received from two sources information that a National MP was under Police investigation and made the decision to alert the Prime Minister’s office.  Little was confident that it was at the end of November, within 10 days of his taking up the role as leader.  By contrast Key had maintained that his office had been informed on December 3, and he made aware of the issue on December 1.  He also maintained that his office already knew about the issue before the time Labour had informed it.

This all turned to shyte for National after Labour supplied a phone log showing that a conversation between McCarten and Eagleson happened on November 26, 8 days after Little became leader and well before the dates Key initially maintained National knew about the issue.

Little also said that Labour did not intend to take the matter further, and they would not be telling anyone else.

Note the ethical decisions made here.  The Standard was not told.  The first post we did on Sabin was my post in late December based entirely on a Sunday Star Times Article.  Parliament was sitting at the time.  The opportunity was not taken to embarrass Key with questions in the house.  The issue was dealt with in a quiet apolitical way in the hope it could be resolved.

Can you imagine if National had the equivalent piece of information?  Slater would have been posting non stop on the issue, the media would have been briefed, and there would be an all out hatchet job done on the unlucky victim.

National is trying to say that the only relevant date is the date that Eagleson told Key and no one can disprove that it happened on December 1.  But this is so improbable.  The media were asking his office questions about Sabin in August 2014.  Do you really believe that the Prime Minister’s office would ignore media enquiries into an allegation that a National MP was being investigated by police for an assault?

The story is not over yet.  The Police “no surprises” policy which caused them to advise Anne Tolley of OIA requests concerning Maurice Williamson and his interference in the prosecution of Dounghua Liu must have kicked in.  What was she told and when?

What ever the outcome it is clear that Andrew Little’s recollection is significantly better than Key’s and that he really is a principled politician.

I look forward to reading John Armstrong’s next column.  If forgetting a 9 year old form letter is justification for resigning then Key is in big trouble.

302 comments on “Andrew Little – principled politician ”

  1. One Anonymous Bloke 1

    Key had maintained that his office had been informed on December 3, and he made aware of the issue on December 1.


    • mickysavage 1.1

      Informed by Labour on December 3 and he was made aware on December 1.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1

        OK I get it – he was trying to say he already knew when Labour told him. His office. Whichever, they already knew all about it so yah boo sucks to Labour.

        No, wait…

  2. ghostwhowalksnz 2

    We are somehow expected to believe that John Key was THE LAST to know about the Sabin investigation ?

  3. Lanthanide 3

    “Can you imagine if National had the equivalent piece of information?”

    We only have to look at the treatment of Darren Hughes to have an idea.

    • alwyn 3.1

      Yes, but that doesn’t make Andy look to good does it?
      John Key, as far as I can determine, never commented on Hughes at all, with the single exception, after the whole thing came apart for Goff who had tried to ignore the matter, that there were always rumours around Parliament.
      Do you have any other evidence that Key ever stirred the pot on that matter?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1

        What, did Key ever ask if Helen Clark was lying about when she knew of the allegations?

        • alwyn

          I don’t understand what you are saying. What allegations are you talking about regarding Helen Clark?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Well, Lanth raised the example of Darren Hughes, to which you replied that Key didn’t comment on it. However, since – to my knowledge – Clark never lied through her teeth about when she knew of the allegations against Hughes, Key didn’t have anything to comment on.

            In this instance of course, Key is lying through his teeth, and this goes to his judgement in backing Sabin as the chair of the law and order select committee, among other things.

            So there’s no equivalence.

            • alwyn

              Of course there is no equivalence.

              Helen Clark left the New Zealand Parliament in April 2009.
              The Hughes’ affair was in March 2011. That is nearly 2 years later.
              At that time Phil Goff, (remember him?), had been the Labour Party leader for nearly two and a half years.

              Why should John Key, or anyone else for that matter, have any interest in what a long-gone former Labour leader had to say?
              Goff, on the other hand certainly did know what was going on but Key never brought the subject up at all.

              If you claim that “However, since – to my knowledge – Clark never lied through her teeth about when she knew of the allegations against Hughes”
              I’m not sure I should trust other statements you avow.

      • Lanthanide 3.1.2

        Actually I was more meaning the way National sat on the sidelines as Whale Oil spewed about Darren, using their double-track dirty politics methods.

  4. Murray Rawshark 4

    I don’t see any particularly principled behaviour by either Little or Labour here. They kept the matter within political circles, effectively denying the public the opportunity to know what sort of people some of our elected representatives are. It’s as if they see themselves as members of a club whose inside goings on are of no concern to the wider public. Looks like business as usual to me.

    • stever 4.1

      Yes I agree.

      If there is any well-principled behaviour here by Labour it’s that they didn’t sensationalise it and keep feeding it to attack-dogs. (And that might just be because they don’t have any!)

      Keeping it all quiet in the club is not principled…it’s the freemasonry of politics coming into play.

      Where’s that disinfecting property of daylight when you most need it?

    • Te Reo Putake 4.2

      I’m not sure what else Labour could do, Murray. If Little had gone public with what was (and still mostly is) unprovable gossip, he would have been slaughtered. Like it or not, there are rules of engagement between the camps in Parliament and they are all colleagues in a broad sense. So I can see Little, who is a decent man, doing the decent thing and letting the Nat Chief of Staff know that an issue might exist.

      As others have noted, that’s not how we know the Tories behave, but then, we’re better than them, right?

      Just as an aside, I recall that Winston Peters was also tipped off by other parties that there was an issue with Brendan Horan, so, if my memory is correct, what Little did with the Sabin info was par for the course.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1

        I’m not sure what else Labour could do, Murray.

        1. Tell National about what has been heard
        2. A couple of days later go public with what has been heard either at a press conference or through Question Time. The latter is probably the better option.

        The reason why the 2nd step is so important is so that these things can’t be swept under the carpet as National is trying to do. Not going public really does make it look like Labour are trying to sweep it under the carpet as well.

        • Te Reo Putake

          Yep, good point. A question along the lines of ‘does the PM have faith in the chair of the law and order committee?’ might have been appropriate.

      • marty mars 4.2.2

        “decent man, doing the decent thing”

        “If Little had gone public with what was (and still mostly is) unprovable gossip, he would have been slaughtered. Like it or not, there are rules of engagement between the camps in Parliament and they are all colleagues in a broad sense.”

        So he didn’t do the decent thing he did the pragmatic ‘”par for the course” thing – that they all do.

        • Tracey

          That is my thinking too. I am not sure he is displaying high principles just that he can play the “game”.

        • McFlock

          I tend to agree about being slaughtered.

          especially after the “a source in GCSB says there’s a tape, I’ll have it soon” debacle.

          But also, it’s an interesting question in applied ethics: you get information about person X that might or might not be true, or that the investigatin might exonerate them. Some things, the public allegation alone will destroy their lives, even if untrue. But X is in a position that might be at the very least a farcical look if not a conflict of interest should the allegations be true.

          Do you go public, in or out of parliament?
          Do you make veiled but pointed questions in parliament?
          Do you tell the boss of X?
          Some combination of the three?

          I reckon Little made a pretty good ethical decision. Key should have stood the guy down as soon as he was aware of the investigation and kept him on the back bench until the issue was resolved. Now it looks like Key, at best, ignored the problem in the hope it would go away. Or is simply absent in charge of the country.

        • Billy Fish

          Conversely – he didn’t arrange for the information to be passed to some of the more ethically deficient bloggy types.
          So that’s an up tick in my book.

      • Murray Rawshark 4.2.3

        They may well be colleagues, but before that they are our representatives, and responsible to us. What Little did was par for the course, and that is exactly my point. Par for the course doesn’t require any great stand on principle.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.3

      Yep, that was pretty much what I was thinking.

    • Tracey 4.4

      As shadow Minister of Justice isn’t his obligation to honour the Law and principle? innocent til proven guilty?

      • Murray Rawshark 4.4.1

        Of course, but that has to be squared with his responsibility to hold the government to account, particularly when FJK is being his dodgy self. There are ways of doing things that do not require pronouncing on Sabin’s guilt or innocence. That is for a jury of his peers, or maybe a judge alone, if and when the family difficulties ever get to court.

  5. Saarbo 5

    Can you imagine if National had the equivalent piece of information? Slater would have been posting non stop on the issue, the media would have been briefed, and there would be an all out hatchet job done on the unlucky victim.(/boldtype>

    Yes, and they continue to get around 50% voter support, so the strategy works incredibly well for them.

    The onus falls onto the media to expose Nats for what/who they are…Im not holding my breath.

    • Just wait. If what I’ve read is correct, the fact that Sabin wasn’t forced to resign back in December is utterly damning.

      • Skinny 5.1.1

        More like he should have been forced to step down as the National Party candidate mid to late August. I fail to believe his exc team didn’t know the cloud over his head. As with higher up in the pecking order, Goodfellow, Joyce, Key. All these tricksters are quick to point out no record. Whenever a politician talks of ‘no record’ rest assure all is not as they would want you to believe.

      • rawshark-yeshe 5.1.2

        at the very least be stood down as chair of the select committee of Law and Order … but as recently as last week Key said he had confidence in Sabin in that role ???

    • Old Mickey 5.2

      and frankly, having slater leading the charge suggest that this will end up being overblown and full of hot air and no susbtance aka WOBH blog

      • rawshark-yeshe 5.2.1

        try to keep up whoever you are. Sabin has resigned. This is not all hot air, though wish it you might.

  6. b waghorn 6

    Little calling key a liar I love it when people call a spade a spade http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/headlines.cfm?c_id=1
    Edit bugger it hasn’t linked straight to article.

  7. ghostwhowalksnz 7

    Isnt Key given briefing lines every day on various issues- some are very small issues- by his press people ?

  8. Skinny 8

    I have just stopped laughing, this is politic’s and timing is everything. It’s a nice ditty for the general public and helps build some further creds for Little which is excellent. However you can cut the crap or the National spin department will turn this around as they so effectively do.

    Mc Carten and a shortened line up would have been very happy to end a rotten year on a high after Little’s dream start as leader. Firing a gun at the end of the term would be a waste of bullets, make the call put it in their back pocket and have some firepower in the new year. See what else unfolds and see how your opponents play things out, remember they know that you know. Parliaments back and now people are ready to listen to politicians again, especially if something dodgy is up.

    • McFlock 8.1

      That’s one possible tactic.

      But then striking while the iron is hot would have rubbed in nat’s poor selection of candidate, so soon after the election, alongside the tobacco lobbyists and general numpties. I’m not sure anyone in Labour knew at that stage that the issues were serious or plausible enough for a resignation, or that it had been festering for quite so long.

      • Skinny 8.1.1

        Some of us were told there was going to be a by-election up here in the North in the new year. This was at pre Xmas drinks. I mix with all sorts including political people, lawyers. Actually thought it was a newbie MP in trouble as I’d heard some rumours during the campaign. Thinking it was them and it was of a personal nature I laughed and didn’t think much more about it. No one was prepared to go into details, obviously see why now.

        • McFlock

          was that in december?

        • Skinny

          Yes the third week 17th or 18th December.

          • McFlock

            so by that time they might well have known more than in late november

            • Skinny

              Of course they did. Looked to me the Sabin’s were doing a number on Collins, on the quiet, under instructions. Or why else wasn’t Collins sent to the back benches earlier. Some were saying back then the Collins/Slater tag team had something over Key, logically thinking why else would you allow your Govt to take so much negative publicity in election year, courtesy of one of your Ministers. It was strange, half the nation couldn’t work it out. So Sabin was handy at the time and helped knock Judy off her perch.

              • McFlock

                Just to clarify my sentence (inserts in italics):

                So by the time of the Christmas party you attended, they (Labour) might have known more about what Sabin was being investigated for than what Labour knew in late November when it might be that all they knew was that two people had said Sabin was being investigated by the police.

                • Skinny

                  There were alot of people that knew exactly the nature of the investigation, some before the election, others after. This is a small country with limited resources. If an ex cop-MP (living in Hicksville) is being investigated it should be regarded as a special case, so outside specialists (should) come to town, they have partners and friends. Those friends get together over drinks and dinner, big secrets are hard to keep, it’s human nature. How do i know this happens is because previously I had a lawyer partner who’s best friend, another lawyer, with a partner who’s a police prosecutor. You hear stuff like the allegation, their half pissed and squeak out a bit more than they would if sober (where you get small talk only) you join the dots when your partner may add more clues over the days or weeks. It’s no different here.

                  This is a classic example. My brotherinlaw txts me as soon as the story broke the other day, it reads Mike Sabin!!! I knew that he knew what was up instantly. Small country as I say.

                  • McFlock

                    Well, if you have evidence that in late november Labour knew the precise nature and indeed resulting truth/guilt of any police investigation, feel free to provide it. I merely thought that that is what the courts determined, but whatever.

                  • Treetop

                    What you say in the first paragraph is so true.

                    The worst example of this is that Thomas was stitched up by the police and someone in the police knew. June 1970 is a long time ago and sadly the police have failed to right the awful wrong done to Thomas by the rogue cops.

                    The damage that rogue cops (rogue politicians) do to the reputation of the police (government) cannot be undone. This is why a rogue cop (politician) needs to be stopped by their own, (they are usually the first to know), even if it is their drinking buddy.

  9. upnorth 9

    Plunkett on the radio this morning is trying to claim that this somehow Andrew’s and Labours fault. Be fascinating to know what he personally is rewarded with for being Key’s spin distributor.

    The fact is, while Key’s fanboys can claim “Got Ya politics of the beltway kind” the fundamental issue is clear:


    Andrew has proven that. Simple. Not beltway at all, as every New Zealander should want to trust the word of the people that govern.

    Now when Mad Mikes’ “family matters” become public, most kiwi’s are going to want to know why Key has not acted decisively and with integrity, but rather obfuscated and lied – Does Key, deep down, in his entitled little world, believe what Sabin did to be a minor “Family Matter” and Sabin to be a fit and proper person to hold a future ministerial warrant?

    • Sacha 9.1

      “when Mad Mikes’ “family matters” become public”

      The Nats are probably gambling on permanent suppression.

      • Lanthanide 9.1.1

        Yeah, I’m thinking it probably will be permanently suppressed, until such time as someone deliberately flouts the law and makes it public (risking jail time) – but it would have to be done in such a way that other media could then report it without also getting in trouble.

        • gsays

          hi lanth, i remember picking up a small xereoxed pamphlet during the rickards scollum and shipton rape trial.
          it stated that shipton and schollum were in jail already for a similar crime.

          this caused a stir as it wasnt public knowledge.

          i still regard the person(s) that printed and distibuted the missive as heroic.

        • Incognito

          Parliamentary privilege?

  10. wyndham 10

    Great photo of Andrew, Micky. You won’t find that one reproduced in the msm !

    • mickysavage 10.1

      Agreed. He is a very funny and very down to earth person. He is trying that really unusual tactic of just being himself. I suspect it may work …

  11. fisiani 11

    This trivial cul de sac issue is obviously seen here as so important and yet no one really cares. Meanwhile the economy is booming, the education results are improving and roads are being built. i hate to tell you but this attempt to smear Honest John will fail like all the others of the last 7 years. Futility is defined as doing the same thing over and over and hoping for a different result.
    Andrew Little is just an angry unionist. He is doing his best but is just an angry unionist.

    • dv 11.1

      >>economy is booming
      Oh look what the debt clock is
      NZ$ 101,128,258,754

      • Colonial Rawshark 11.1.1

        The NZ govt needs to keep increasing its debt. It’s only other choice is to suck more money out of the private sector (including ordinary households) using taxes, fines and fees.

        • Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark

          Labour and the Left need to think clearly and be very well prepared as to how this should be framed.

          The last thing we, as a country, want to see is for an incoming 2017 Labour-led government be manipulated or driven into imposing austerity because of the debt.

          • Colonial Rawshark

            And that’s exactly the trap. That an economically orthodox “fiscally responsible” Labour Govt comes in, gets the public books back in order (which also means that it cannot fund really major left wing projects like big public transport infrastructure and a UBI).

            Just in time to be kicked out again by voters sick of not feeling any improvement in their pockets, so that NATs can turn up once more and blow the budget on their favourite mates and industries.

            • Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark

              Indeed. Thanks. I hope some thoughtful and intelligent members of the Labour caucus will have read this thread before the 2017 campaign.

    • b waghorn 11.2

      Put enogh straws on a Camel and eventually one will Brake its back

    • McFlock 11.3

      it’s trivial and a cul de sac?
      You guys must be shitting yourselves if you’re trying to tell us that it’s that unimportant.

      Key must have known about whatever it is for ages – and “Honest John” left the man in the Law and Order select committee. The nats kept him as a candidate.

      Whereas Little reported the rumours of police investigation to the man’s boss. Quite a difference in behaviour there.

    • Tracey 11.4

      You need to tell Mr hooton, not just we nameless nobodies here, cos he has the media’s ear

    • Colonial Rawshark 11.5

      Mis-characterising people with one liners reveals you as a bit of a shallow thinker, Fisi.

    • Skinny 11.6

      Meanwhile John Key and team National continues their relationship with Slater, despite a tv3 poll revealing 68% don’t like Key having anything to do with the dirty blogger.

      That’s ok fisinani they will just think it’s dirty politic’s as usual by Team Key.

    • ANOnSHARK 11.7

      “Honest John ”

      your creepy !

    • The Murphey 11.8

      Q. The old Fisiani writing style is back again

      Last week Fisiani was almost making sense as if there were someone or something else controlling the handle

      • Billy Fish 11.8.1

        He must be taking some down time from MiniTrue.
        More importantly has the chocolate ration increased? Double plus good if it has.

    • Draco T Bastard 11.9

      This trivial cul de sac issue is obviously seen here as so important and yet no one really cares.

      Having an MP who’s under criminal investigation not only supported by his political party but having that political party working in covering up that investigation is not trivial. In fact, it’s the highest form of corruption around. Especially now that that investigation appears to have driven him to resign.

      • Old Mickey 11.9.1

        Are you talking Philip Taitio Field or Mike Sabin ?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 11.9.2

        Minor point DtB: if [Speculation is dangerous sorry – MS]

        Even Taito Field’s offending pales by comparison, so it’s interesting to see Old Mickey eager to buddy up with Sabin.

        • Lanthanide

          [Sorry Lanth. Legitimate discussion but not now – MS]

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            I’m not sure either: the closest I can get to an answer is that people are advised to plead not guilty because “Once a conviction has been entered on your record, it’s there for life.”

            Which surely implies the plea makes the conviction automatic.

            Can any of our resident lawyers help please?

            • McFlock

              not a lawyer, but it’s the john banks situation.
              He was found guilty, but resigned before being convicted.

              The conviction was handed down at sentencing, e.g. many people are found guilty of minor crimes but “discharged without conviction”.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          @Micky Savage: please would you clarify?

          Which is the offending statement?

          1. Speculation that [this statement. For legal reasons it is dangerous to say this. Sorry to be a pedant, part of my training – MS] or,
          2. Speculation that a disputed facts hearing indicates a guilty plea?

          or both, or some other third thing I haven’t grasped?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Thanks MS – and sorry for repeating it.

            Can you say whether the DF hearing indicates a guilty plea?

            • mickysavage

              No problems OAB.

              Under section 24 of the Sentencing Act 2002 if after a plea is entered there is a dispute as to facts then a hearing can be required.


              • One Anonymous Bloke

                …and sentencing only occurs following a guilty plea or verdict…

                • Tracey

                  I wonder what would happen if the victim/s in a suppression ordered case got together (if there were more than one) and had a press conference naming their assaulter who had been found guilty or pleaded guilty? Mickey could they elect a trial by jury for breaching a suppression order or would it have to be judge alone?

                  I am only hypothesising because I doubt any victim/s would want to put themselves through it, which is another way a perpetrator gets to keep his/her name secret

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    What would happen?

                    I suppose that would depend on, for example: section 204(1) of the Criminal Procedure Act.

                    • Tracey

                      but what is the maximum punishment. I suppose Slater’s case would show that? A slap on the hand with a wet bus ticket? A fine? I am sure many would pitchin to help pay in such a case BUT as always with such stuff the ongoing trauma for victims is unlikely to see one making such a move… I wonder if a guardian could? (if they are under 18)


                      He was fined $750 for each count, a total amount to $6750, and ordered to pay $130 court costs for each charge.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Section 211: Offences & Penalties.

                      $25k & 6 months.

                      Crowd funding? 😈

                  • rawshark-yeshe

                    be good to see a law change discussion whereby the victim(s) who are intended to be protected by any suppression of a criminal’s name are given the choice so the decision to apply suppression or not rests solely with them or their legal guardians if underage.

                    in the ‘prickly’ case down south recently, one of the victims requested her name be released from the order .. but it did not lead to the criminal being named.

                    too often it’s used to protect the pedophile, the rapist, the flasher, the
                    video-up-the-skirt perverts …. and of course, the victims are re-victimised.

  12. esoteric pineapples 12

    Pretty much everyone who should know what is really going on, does know. All we are really watching now through the MSM is a game of pretending to not know being played out because everyone who would like to say what is going on has their hands legally tied behind their backs.

    For instance, is the public ever going to know if Sabin has been charged and what he has been charged with, or is everything being swept permanently under the carpet.

    • Lanthanide 12.1

      “For instance, is the public ever going to know if Sabin has been charged and what he has been charged with, or is everything being swept permanently under the carpet.”

      How does Parliamentary privilege square against suppression orders?

      • GregJ 12.1.1

        It’s covered in Parliamentary Standing Orders (112 & 113) – See here.

        A MP could ask the Speaker for permission to reveal the persons name in breach of a judicial order although it’s pretty certain that the Speaker would say no unless they was some really compelling reason.

        • Lanthanide

          There is a compelling reason in this case, unfortunately it’s a very massive liability to the speaker’s own party, so we’re very unlikely to get this aired in Parliament either 🙁

          • rawshark-yeshe

            Protection and safety of victim or victims would have to be accounted for in any decision ?

  13. English Breakfast 13

    I’m not ready to jump on this bandwagon just yet, and here’s why:

    1. How can the phone log between Eagleson and McCarten be proof of anything without the contents of the conversation being known?
    2. How do we know Andrew Little is correct in his comments about the date he heard about the allegations? From what I can see this his simply his word; there is no evidence supporting it.
    3. Key’s position on when he heard about the allegations has been consistent throughout. Early December.

    My caution is based on previous occasions when Key has appeared to have been nailed, only to produce evidence that refuted the allegations. I remember Clark doing the same on many occasions.

    • Sacha 13.1

      “Key’s position on when he heard about the allegations has been consistent throughout. Early December.”

      Bullshit. ‘Last week of parliament’, ‘early December’, ‘Dec 1st’ – so far. And you really think media were investigating a nothing story since August? Credulous dolt.

    • Tracey 13.2

      Has Wayne Eagleston been sacked for not informing his PM, or anyone else who knew before December 1 2014? Logic would dictate that surely? Given how flayling it is making the PM look?

      • freedom 13.2.1

        Key seems very comfortable with the steps taken by Eagleston.
        Then again, Key also thinks NZ was settled peaceably. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/national/news/video.cfm?c_id=1503075&gal_cid=1503075&gallery_id=147880

        • Tracey

          He has ‘clarified” what he meant now. It seems he meant the actual siging of the treaty was peaceful but acknowledges breach of the Treaty led to Land Wars.

          He also thinks it is fine for the GG to get into politics on Waitangi Day because it suits his Govt’s agenda. Ministers and GG putting pressure on Ngapuhi to sign settlement now. According to key, Jerry is Maori so it is natural he would understand how important the settlement is.

          • Murray Rawshark

            Wow. The local queen should not interfere in politics at all. Everything is going down the drain with the Key regime. I doubt if Ngapuhi will take any notice.

            • Tracey

              Funny who key is happy to have a political view… including Peter jackson, film-maker and who he is not… so far it is split into those who pursue his agenda and those who do not.

    • Anne 13.3

      How do we know Andrew Little is correct in his comments about the date he heard about the allegations? From what I can see this his simply his word; there is no evidence supporting it.

      Don’t you read newspapers or listen to the news? The phone log Little is referring to was supplied by Parliamentary Services. Unless of course you are happy to believe Parliamentary Services is lying.

      • English Breakfast 13.3.1

        The ‘phone log’ doesn’t contain the contents of a conversation, just that a conversation took place. It could have been about anything. Please understand i’m not making Key’s case here, just trying to explain why this issue just isn’t gaining any traction with the wider public.

        • Tracey


          Hypothetical for you

          Let’s say you chat with your 25+ co-workers over a Member of Parliament (say Graham Capill) who it turns out was sexually assaulting young girls (for whatever reason you now know this for fact on 5 Feb 2015), but previously you and your co-workers didn’t know what he had been found guilty of. The Pm, who has overseen his appointment to a Select Committee and then sees him chairing it (say law and order) says s/he first knew about it 2 months ago and did not seek to stand the MP down (Let’s assume Capill was in his/her party), or remove them from the committee… even considered making him a Minister and shares that info to boost Capill’s character, even after he/she knows that the charges and guilt were for sexual offences against children.

          Do they care, or not care about the conduct of the PM?

          • English Breakfast

            You’re missing the point. There is no evidence Key knew about the nature of the allegations until early December. Sabin has been found guilty of nothing at this point,, so your hypothetical simply doesn’t apply.

            [You are now in super troll mode. Last warning – MS]

        • Anne

          This is a nonsense EB.

          Andrew Little was supplied with information about Sabin from two independent sources around 25/26 November – a week after he became the leader. He did the decent thing and had his chief of staff advise Key’s chief of staff. At that stage the allegation was not widely known, so it was understandable he wasn’t sure whether the PM knew about it. As it turned out they did know, but Little’s decision to give them a heads up that they had been approached was the right and ethical thing to do.

          The phone log supplied by Parliamentary Services confirmed the date and exact time the phone-call from Little’s office to Key’s office took place. This was important for Andrew Little because Key had effectively claimed Little was lying about the date. The date is even more important because it was around the time of the phone-call that Sabin was appointed to the position of chairman of the Law and Order select committee. It is a matter of real and public concern that a person who is the subject of a police investigation should have been promoted to this position.

          All of the above is in the public arena and could have been accessed by you without resorting to negative inferences concerning Andrew Little and his office staff.

          I strongly suspect your motivation!

    • Tracey 13.4

      John Key has not been entirely consistent BUT he also has offered no proof to support his view that he FIRST was told/heard in early december 2014… unless he meant early december 2011, but who knows.

      • Old Mickey 13.4.1

        or, who cares

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Not extreme right wing authoritarian sadists, that’s for sure, although I expect they’ll be looking for revenge.

      • English Breakfast 13.4.2

        Where is the inconsistency? It seems Key’s claims have always mentioned a time in early December.

        • Tracey

          Well, given your concern about all this, do a timeline for us all of what he said from when it first came up until today, then we can see in black and white. You originally wrote about Key

          ” has been consistent throughout”

          That is your assertion so it is not really for me to prove he wasn’t but for you to prove he was. So I look forward to reading the timeline of assertions, including from the PM and others. I’m sure you agree he doesn’t have a monopoly on the truth here.

          As an aside, and based on your assertion he has been consistent throughout do you accept that Mr key has been let down horribly under the No Surprises policy, including by his own Chief of Staff, Minister of Police (or if she wasn’t told by the Police themselves)? Put together with the finding of the investigation of his office someone ought to be sacked dont you think?

          • English Breakfast

            If, and that is a big if, there was a significant time lapse between his staff knowing and them informing him.

    • Lanthanide 13.5

      “1. How can the phone log between Eagleson and McCarten be proof of anything without the contents of the conversation being known?”

      A diarised record of a phone call, where you state the date, time, calle(e/r) and topic of conversation and any pertinent details of that conversation are sufficient to be treated as evidence in a court of law.

      Also, Wayne Eagleson hasn’t denied Matt McCarten’s claim.

      So, it should be considered proof until actively proven to be wrong.

      “2. How do we know Andrew Little is correct in his comments about the date he heard about the allegations? From what I can see this his simply his word; there is no evidence supporting it.”

      Because we know the content of McCarten’s phone call constitutes proof. Clearly McCarten knew, at the latest, on the 26th of November. Little was elected leader only a week or two beforehand. There’s no reason not to take Andrew little at his word.

      “3. Key’s position on when he heard about the allegations has been consistent throughout. Early December.”

      Except it hasn’t been consistent. And NBR has published that he knew in April. TV1 news established that the police were investigating in August, and that normally the police will inform the leader of a political party when an investigation into one of their MPs begin.

      So, that’s all 3 of your cautions rebutted. You should now be convinced that Key is covering something up.

      • English Breakfast 13.5.1

        1. No diarised record has been produced, only a log. It isn’t up to Eagleson to deny anything. It is Key being questioned.
        2. We don’t know there is a diarised record.
        3. There is no proof Key knew before early December. None.

        • Lanthanide

          Please tell me the difference between a “log” and a “diarised record”.

          Also please indicate that you know for certain that when the media say “phone log” they aren’t just using that as a term to refer to a “diarised record”, because the general public know what a “phone log” is but have no idea what a “diarised record” is.

          You also haven’t addressed the fact that Wayne Eagleson has *not* contradicted Matt McCarten.

          “3. There is no proof Key knew before early December. None.”

          That’s not the claim I responded to. The claim I was responded to was “3. Key’s position on when he heard about the allegations has been consistent throughout. Early December.”

          He hasn’t been consistent, because first he said last week of Parliament (ie, mid-December). The other detail about claims from NBR and TV1 news throw doubt on the PMs claims – no they are not proof, but obviously the PM is trying to protect his image and reputation and so will say whatever he can get away with in order to do that, in the hope/belief that no other evidence will come out to contradict him.

          • Tracey

            a log is a phone record showing number dialled to/from and time of call and duration.

            a diarised records is a notation in a hard diary or electronic “rang Wayne E to ask if the PM knew about “insert rumour” about Sabin”

            otherwise English Breakfast is relying solely on the Pm’s word (as he/she is entitled) as to when he heard about stuff. past behaviour is an indication of future performance… he also said some stuff about Ian Fletcher which records later contradicted… oh and hadn’t texted with slater (in fact night before being asked).

          • English Breakfast

            A ‘log’ is a list of calls made with the numbers called. A ‘diarised record’ is a record of the contents of the discussion. A log proves nothing.

            • Lanthanide

              Again I see you’re avoiding the point where Wayne Eagleson has not disputed McCarten’s claim.

              • English Breakfast

                Again, it’s not up to him to dispute anything. It’s up to those making the allegations to prove them.

                • wtl

                  Proof does no have to be documented evidence. For example, a court will accept testimony as a form of evidence and McCarten’s testimony would therefore be accepted as true in a court unless it was disputed.

                • Lanthanide

                  Funny how you have a much higher level of ‘proof’ than pretty much everyone else in society.

                  I guess we can just ignore your PoV as being some weird outlier and carry on, in the real world.

    • Draco T Bastard 13.6

      1. Yeah, because, you know, Matt McCarten was just giving is old friend in the National Party a call just to have a chin wag
      2. The date has been backed up by the call log
      3. No it hasn’t, it’s changed as more info’s come out.

      Your caution seems to be based upon your belief that Key is infallible.

      • English Breakfast 13.6.1

        1. Happens all the time, actually.
        2. Again, the log is not a record of contents.
        3. Evidence?

        I have no faith Key is anything other than entirely fallible. But this narrative about Key’s dishonesty is the same line the right threw at Helen Clark for several years. That failed, and so will this.

        • Tracey

          Interesting, their attacks on Clark were never bigger than in late 2007 and through 2008 and yet…

          I get your point no one has actually definitively caught him in a lie until someone (cos he won’t use the resources at his fingertips to do it) brings forward their evidence. Even IF the Nat party knew as early as 2011 they it seems will fall on their swords that Key wasn’t told ever… until after Little rang Wayne and then today we hear from key that Wayne did some “investigations” and then told Key. Interesting that Wayne didn’t appear to know either…

        • Draco T Bastard

          1. If you believe that then I’ve got a bridge to sell you
          2. If someone tells me that they called someone about a subject on or about such and such a date and then they produce records of the phone calls then I’m going to believe them
          3. Do try keeping up. Key’s shifting story has been in the news all week

        • Murray Rawshark

          That’s just the standard NAct response to the offences outlined in Dirty Politics, and it is false and pathetic.

    • Murray Rawshark 13.7

      “How do we know Andrew Little is correct in his comments about the date he heard about the allegations? From what I can see this his simply his word; there is no evidence supporting it.”

      For a start, Little is not known to be a compulsive liar. FJK certainly qualifies. I am willing to accept Little’s word on this. Key has not been consistent at all. He has a record of this behaviour. I do not accept your word, Mr Teapot.

      • English Breakfast 13.7.1

        I am not prepared to believe any of them.

        • Sacha

          If the evidence Labour provided was not correct, why would the PM and Eagleson change their story afterwards about the dates? You’re just being silly.

          • English Breakfast

            They didn’t. [You are descending into trolling territory. Either provide evidence to back up what you were saying or desist – MS]

            • Draco T Bastard

              Yes they did.

            • Sacha

              Ok, now you’re trolling, EB. Get a life.

            • English Breakfast

              No, I am not trolling. In fact I share the same concerns as most posters here about this matter. But the simple fact is that in this mornings MSM this story is now dead, and once again Key has got away with what appears to be something decidedly dodgy. My point is simply that, like many of the attacks from the right about Clark, nothing is stocking to Key in the mind of the public, and rather than continue this line of attack Labour need to leave the attack dog stuff to others and get on with talking about policy.

              • Sacha

                Moderators, please deal with this turd.

                • Pete George

                  Why can’t you deal with it yourself? You know, actually debate points you dispute.

                  You have a real intolerance of people expressing themselves who disagree with haven’t you.

                  • These are the indisputable facts about Mother Nature’s cruellest predator, the Hedgehog.

                  • mickysavage

                    Pete EB is being a troll. Nothing is clearer. Trolls disagree with reasonable people, it is what they do. But they do it with no intent to debate the issue properly.

                    • Pete George

                      Don’t you mean people who think they are reasonable claim people they disagree with are tr0lls?

                      It’s common for regulars here to make little or no attempt to debate at all let alone properly.

                    • mickysavage

                      Pete address EB’s comments. He is insisting that Key never changed his story and Little never informed his office of Sabin’s problems when these assertions are clearly not true. Nothing is clearer. He is seeking to disrupt the discussion by insisting that these very clear facts are not correct.

                      A number of people have attempted to debate these issues with him but he continues to claim that they are wrong when the reality is clearly on their side.

                    • Anne

                      Why don’t you start checking your facts Pete G instead of always jumping to conclusions.

                    • Sacha

                      The earth is flat. Pete.

                    • English Breakfast

                      You simply don’t understand the points I’ve been making. I followed Andrew Little’s comments at Waitangi about a range of issues and thought YES!, now we are seeing a leader put forward ideas that will stimulate debate and provide a clear and viable alternative to the current direction our country is taking. Instead of labelling me, perhaps you should read John Armstrongs piece in the Herald today…he makes my point far better than I have.

                  • Sacha

                    Note moderator feedback, PG:

                    Andrew Little – principled politician

                    This dick was on a warning already.

                    I know you don’t understand communities but they have needs that individuals do not magically provide.

              • Anne

                No, I am not trolling…..

                Oh yes you are. The alarm bells started ringing as soon as I first encountered the pseudonym.

                Cuppa tea anyone?

                • The Al1en

                  “The alarm bells started ringing as soon as I first encountered the pseudonym.”

                  Why was that? What set them off?

                  • McFlock

                    English Breakfast is a type of tea.

                    As Anne said, the nats have a particular tendency towards “cups of tea”. And pretending they were private, even though journos were invited.

                    By itself, not conclusive by any means. But EB seems to have fulfilled the prophecy anyway, including the ways mickeysavage has itemised.

                  • McFlock

                    I missed it initially, too.

                    But EB is definitely a spoonful of sugar shy of an honest cuppa.

            • English Breakfast

              I’m not making the assertions, so I don’t have to provide any evidence.

  14. Sacha 14

    Little and McCarten would have known the case involved victims, which makes the decision against shouting it from the rooftops simpler (unless they were as unethical as some other politicians have been).

  15. David 15

    I was hoping that Andrew would lead Labour with new policy and ideas for NZ.
    It is a real shame that he appears (so far anyway) to be back into gotcha politics and timelines and he said she said stuff that are not helping our cause. NZ voters want to know where we stand not same old dirty politics – leave that to others and come out with some good ideas please!

    • Billy Fish 15.1

      The “gotcha” politics is establishing a narrative . The narrative being that the PM is often misleading with the truth.
      So no this isn’t gotcha politics. This is showing that maybe, just maybe, a lot of what comes from the top may be porkies.

      • Old Mickey 15.1.1

        Regardless of who the PM is, this narrative doesnt need to be established. All politicans lie. Thsi is clearly gotcha, and it doesnt help. 50% supported Key & National at the election. This petty narrative only makes us look hypocritical or uninspired…….

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          50% was it? You’ve got a little narrative all your very own. Are you sure your quest to deify Saint Mike isn’t exposing you to revulsion and contempt?

        • framu

          your use of “50%” and then “us” isnt very convincing

      • English Breakfast 15.1.2

        Yes, it is. The narrative is that Little, just like his predecessors, is desperate to pin something on the most popular PM in NZ’s history. This is not what will turn things for the centre left.

        • rawshark-yeshe

          Don’t be daft English Breakfast.

          The actual narrative is that Key and National’s hierachy allowed a candidate to stand for re-election whilst under investigation for very, very serious and awful charges. And then Key appointed him chair of select committee on law and order, and. then refused to stand him down.

          That is the narrative and why the times and dates matter. This time It is so much more than Key lying about it. It is not about Little, but it is about lots of little threads coming together.

          (And let’s note it is possible they allowed him twice to stand for election.)

          • English Breakfast

            This is what makes this so silly…you don’t even know the narrative! The narrative is that Key knew about this in early December, Eagelson a matter of days earlier. Until the earlier dates claimed can be proven, they remain unsubstantiated claims. Just like so many other attacks on Key and Clark before him.

            • rawshark-yeshe

              sorry to shout but THAT IS NOT THE NARRATIVE no matter how many times you choose to repeat it. There is a desperate, no doubt Curia-led attempt to make it the narrative. BUT IT IS NOT.

              (Are you part of Curia-led by any chance ? )

        • McFlock

          most popular PM in NZ’s history


    • One Anonymous Bloke 15.2

      It’s illegitimate to question the Prime Minister’s judgement in this matter?

      Nah, you’re wrong – if we’re going to clean up politics we have to start with the people who are up to their necks in filth – like the Prime Minister.

    • Tracey 15.3

      you sound concerned.

      • McFlock 15.3.1


        concerned commenter calls facts “dirty politics”.
        Damn reality and its liberal bias…

        • Tracey

          especially odd observation from David cos that is what Labour gave them in election 14… ideas and policy and plans

          • David

            Obviously not the ideas and policy and plan that got Labour over the line so me thinks the better option would be to come up with some new well thought out ideas and policy and plans to win an election in 2017.

            As I said before (and have been shot down for saying) Andrew Little and labour need to avoid this style of (maybe dirty) politics and get on with the job of being a credible opposition.

            • Tracey

              Well David you have a forum, suggest away…

              Don’t hold back be specific and help the Left win in 2017

              • David

                Tracey I will leave the details to the experts but suggest a few areas to consider looking at would be education (increase parental choice), health (a buggers muddle and seemingly bottomless pit but more prevention and less cure) and taxation (better targeted WFF to start with)reduce dependency on welfare (along the lines of eligible people either earning, learning or volunteering).

                That’s a start anyway – happy to hear some from you as well Tracey.


                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Decrease parental choice* in education and increase evidence-based pedagogy.

                  *there’s a reason wingnuts and other religious gimps want indoctrination schools and it isn’t the welfare of their kids, it’s the continuation of their beliefs.

                  • David

                    Mate I don’t even know what pedagogy means !

                    and what is an indoctrination school?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      This could be a learning opportunity for you then. English language 101, as it were.

                      You will need: a dictionary. Do you know what that is?

                    • freedom

                      “Mate I don’t even know what pedagogy means !”

                      David, with all due respect, you are using a response template that only makes sense in live conversation occurring in real time. This environment does not qualify as either of those things.

                      You are using the internet to engage in this dialogue.

                      Are you suggesting, that in the three quarters of an hour before you responded to OAB’s post, that you were unable to use one of the thirty million* dictionary pages out there to look up the word?

                      * wild guesstimate

                • Tracey

                  i am not the one saying what labour needs to do especially as I support the greens.

                  sounds like what you want could already be available from parties other than Labour Party.

                  • David

                    You asked for ideas ” Don’t hold back be specific and help the Left win in 2017 ” not Labour specifically so presumably with Greens being on the Left then surely you can put forward an idea or tow to get some discussion underway?

    • Not helping “our” cause? Who is the implied “we” in that sentence? “We” the concern trolls, maybe? I didn’t know you guys had a cause.

    • whateva next? 15.5

      hmmmm, tried that during last election campaign, and it was a waste of breath thanks, National MSM shredded anything, like hounds baying for blood, when ever a new policy announced.No intelligent debate, just snappy little put down sound bites.
      To be frank your comment sounds like the National Party standard narrative when they are lying, and want to blame Labour.

  16. NZJester 16

    I wonder if the National voters of that safe National seat will actually still vote for National or if they will show there displeasure at being made fools of?
    There is a small off chance a Labour MP could be voted in there.
    Sabian got 18269 votes with Labour on 8968 and Greens on 3639
    So that’s 12608 that voted for the left. If more than 5661of the previous National voters vote for other parties on the right or even Labour and Labour picks up most of the Left vote it could happen.
    It’s a slim chance, but it will be interesting to see
    My figures came from

    • b waghorn 16.1

      Collins lost over over 5000 votes in her electorate. it might be time to leak what sabins accused of.

    • mickysavage 16.2

      Actually NZJ if 2832 Sabin voters vote for the opposition candidate and Labour and the Greens endorse the same candidate the power base in Parliament will be changed.

      • Skinny 16.2.1

        “Actually NZJ if 2832 Sabin voters vote for the opposition candidate and Labour and the Greens endorse the same candidate the power base in Parliament will be changed.”

        Or if an independent stands and a large enough chunk of the 2832 vote in protest to that indie and or the rest to the same candidate then as you say the power base changes.

        Say if I merely moot supporting the indie to help campaign then it shouldn’t be a problem right? So I can disregard the heavy handed letter one of the beltways in the leadership sent out directed at me as if ‘Labour own me’ this comes after a gutless former ‘one term (trick pony) MP complains.

        Meanwhile 2 former labour leaders Goff & Shearer anger Labour members like my partner, making total idiots of themselves and the LP on Cambell Live, partying with that sellout prick Shane Jones at his place. I actually laughed and said it’s part of Jones employment contract with national, too embarrass Labour. Oh ffs these issues are why people like us resent Labour and the way they treat people.

        • Tracey

          You happy for Winston to stand and Labour et al to stand no one?

          • Skinny

            I would prefer a primary between party’s outside of Nact with the winner becoming the sole candidate. However regrettably I can not see them working together to achieve this. Same old same old vote splitting/throat cutting.

            • Tracey

              well frankly, that is highly unlikely. So you wouldn’t support Winston standing and all others standing aside?

              • Skinny

                Tracy I am in no position to tell say Willow Jean Prime (Labour highly likely candidate) or David Clendon of Greens to do anything. Other than knowing them, I hold a top position regionally with our Union which is an affiliate to the LP. I have however worked across the 3 party’s in unity for the common good. Any support of another party would be as an individual outside of the union, meaning not using my union title (declared if asked or dealing with media as most know of my position) their resources, membership, or funds. Hope this answers your question.

                • Tracey

                  Geesh skinny

                  I asked you an opinion, that’s all. If you don’t want to say whether you would be in favour of Winnie standing and others not, just say so brother. So no, you didn’t answer my question. I am assuming Skinny isn’t your real or full name.

                  • Skinny

                    Peters would have the best chance. Head to head answer yes.

                    • McFlock

                      I reckon he’d also make the campaign more lively.
                      Never voted for the man, but by gum I like it when he’s campaigning. He’s a pleasure to watch on the hustings.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      There is some sense in Peters standing, but only if he was the only major party candidate. More likely is that Prime will be that sole candidate and NSF and the greens wont stand. If it turns out that Key knew what Sabin’s issues were prior to the last election, then disgust at being duped might swing it Labour’s way. The nats need a quality candidate whatever the truth turns out to be.

                      (Skinny, if I can fly a kite here, dya reckon Jones might be that candidate?)

                    • Skinny

                      Peters stands the best chance if all others (Greenslabour stand aside and endorse there supporters vote for him. I doubt very much this will occur as too many Greens couldn’t bring themselves to do this. Labour may lose Little as he is last on list.

                      Jones is living high on the taxpayers hog, as he proudly boasts. However he is a highly paid contractor and will do what he is ordered to do, provided a tax free incentive is arranged.

                      An odd feeling says he walks this world on borrowed time, a air crash on the way to an exotic location. I guess his actions are clocking up a huge amount of bad karma, eventually the death spiral is the balance. Hope not, but wouldn’t be a surprise.

  17. North 17

    So when for the umpteenth time Key’s responses look shady at best, at worst cynical, contemptuous lies to embrace character defect, to remark is to engage “gotcha” politics ? Even when disbelief can be suspended no further ?

    You seem rather too much the country village cleric to live in this world of crooks and thieves and greedy banksters David @ 15. It’s that or your plaintive “our cause” stuff is a dishonesty undiluted from that of TheGodKey.

    • David 17.1

      Yes – agree his responses look shady BUT you have got to ask yourself – is this advancing Labour or is this a sideshow that the voter that Labour is trying to connect with really does not care about? Yes I know it could be the start of cunning plan for a death by 1,000 cuts but……really?

      I believe they would like to hear what a difference Labour might make to get them thinking about an option for 2017.

      Anyway the good thing is we can agree to disagree !

      • One Anonymous Bloke 17.1.1

        really does not care about?

        My anecdata says different. A mate who’s never voted in his life, “I don’t care about politics” texting me spitting tacks about Key’s lies. It’s the nature of Sabin’s offending, you see: everyone knows what it is. People have a very short fuse when it comes to that sort of thing.

        • David

          A mate who has never voted is one person out of a sample size of a couple of million voters – from my fifth form stats class that’s not a real reliable sample size !

          And based on your previous cutting response to my previous I have had to get a dictionary out and look up pedagogy and now anecdata.

          You learn something new every day!

          Oh and BTW where did the quote “Decrease parental choice* in education and increase evidence-based pedagogy” come from anyway – sounds prepared. Is it from an existing policy?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            🙄 and 😆 at the astonishing leaps in cognitive capacity David manages.

            As for prepared lines, here’s another one for you to ponder, David: projection.

            • David

              Mate you are difficult to follow.

              Whaddya mean by the (presumably sarcastic) “astonishing leaps in cognitive capacity David manages”

              And was that quote prepared by someone else of is that one of yours?

              Oh and you are answering most of my questions but not the one about what’s a “indoctrination school” – that one was certainly not in the dictionary.

              Simple answers for me only please !

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                My opinion is that when it comes to education people who use the word ‘choice’ are lying, and doing so deliberately.

                I think the best way to deal with them is post-natal abortion, because they degrade the chance of children being well educated, and again, it’s deliberate.

                Now you’ve learned what pedagogy is, let’s hear it: which shite right wing education system are you parroting? Rimmer’s?

                • David

                  Nah I am not lying re my use of choice so your opinion is not relevant in my case – of course it may be in others!

                  Relating to “choice” in context of my original point – my experience is that because I live in a particular area I am obliged to send my son to a school that has received a poor ERO report. But I would prefer to send him to a different school not that much further away but I have NO choice (apart from selling and moving into that zone I guess but that’s kinda radical !)

                  You used the pedagogy word and I just learnt what it means ! Fancy word for a way of saying “how best to teach” . So sorry to disappoint you but I have no idea what “Rimmers” means either (well apart from something I am not going to mention on here)

                  And is the post natal abortion comment an attempt at humour or are you serious? And did you mean killing me or the student looking for the better school? (looking for context here!)

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Rimmer is a reference to David Seymour.

                    Giving you the “choice” ignores the problem – far better to put resources into best education practice than pandering to disingenuous rhetoric and opinion-based learning.

                    And yeah, I’m serious: it would be better to defend our children that allow them to be preyed upon by right wing ideologues: especially considering the serious problem of sadists in their ranks.

  18. Old Mickey 18

    Philip Taitio Field was innocent until proven guilty, yet this poor bugger….this stinks of a beltway issue, and we need to get away from that focus. Everyone in our office (25+ people) dont give a tinkers when John Key reckons he knew or not. What new policy initiative can Little offer that is better than Key’s current platform ? I am waiting for that with baited breath…….

    • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1

      This poor “bugger” (is that the right word for it?) [Speculation sorry OAB – MS]

    • Lanthanide 18.2

      So 25+ people in your office don’t care if the PM knowingly appoints an ex-cop, who is under police investigation for very serious assault allegations, to the chair of the law and order select-committee?

      Or, that the National party would be happy to have such a person represent them in the 2014 election?

      • Tracey 18.2.1

        he spent the morning polling them, then rang the pm. polling is his bidness

        “beltway” – use of that word is a dead give away.

    • McFlock 18.3

      There are 25 people in the National Party research unit? Who would have thunk it…

    • sabine 18.4

      but but

      John Key is da man, your Leader, Dear Leader, your PM or the office of the PM or the husband of a women and the father of some children, but absolutly the PM.

      and you don’t give a shite?

      Really ?

      Really ?

      oh dear

    • Skinny 18.5

      Field was harshly treated and got sent down for longer than he should of.

    • Actually, Field was stood down from ministerial responsibilities when allegations were made in 2005, was put on indefinite leave as soon as a police investigation was launched in 2006, and expelled from the Party *months* before charges were actually filed. He wasn’t prosecuted and convicted until after the 2008 election, at which point he was no longer an MP.

      But it’s cheering to know that he’s the “best” example the right can point to of anything even approximating the dodginess surrounding Sabin, and Key’s persistent defence of him.

      • lprent 18.6.1

        Look they haven’t been talking to Labour MPs. They usually seem to think we are attack dogs for whatever faction they aren’t in. 😉

        FFS: Why we want to be poodles for politicians or a political party? We are not mindless pack animals like many of the fools on the right.

        Edit: Thanks PG. I dropped a word…. 😈

        • Pete George

          Are you sure you meant to say that?

          • lprent

            No. Definitely not. Its the damn weather and getting to sleep in this muggy summer.

            Bloody hell I must be tired to have missed that.

            • Pete George

              Anyone can make mistakes. Including Freudian slips.

              • Any excuse to take a nasty little stab at someone 🙄

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Yep. Apparently it’s worth an entire post on his own blog coz pedantry is where Pete’s at when he’s not cut and pasting great slabs of the comments here or on other blogs to fill the intellectual void that is YawnNZ.

                  • Tracey

                    You jest, surely?

                    No more important matters on the political horizon than that for Pete?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Apparently not. The site’s just a beige wasteland with a comments section populated by tumbleweed.

                    • freedom

                      nope it’s true,
                      His ‘finger on the pulse of political discussion’ posts are really that exciting. Observant folk will notice that Pete’s posts (and associated comments section) do have a date stamp, but no time stamps.

                      I am guessing he posted it at 9:08pm

                    • At least he isn’t pretending anymore – his tank is empty – the roadwarrior has no road left and his fuel has to be pilfered – he is alone in the vast desert, desperately alone, whistling quietly to himself.

              • freedom

                Pete, if you have any spare time whilst undertaking your astoundingly important endeavours, maybe you have time to answer a simple Y or N question?

                Andrew Little – principled politician

              • lprent

                Yeah so freudian. Can you imagine anyone trying to give me orders? At work or anywhere else?

                It does happen, but in civilian life it is where it should be – in times of urgency. I learnt in the army that there were other times you need them for bone level reactive training.

                But outside of that when an issue comes up, I look at the issues, whoever else I am dealing with look at it, and we jointly figure an approach to deal with the issue. Sometimes I have no real opinion and I choose to follow someone else’s ‘orders’

                Certain people have been given the right to order me on certain things. Pretty much family on the social things that I tend to ignore. Like birthdays, xmas, Lyn’s 40th, etc

                But I never act like a pack animal braying after a victim around on mob instinct as I have seen numerous times from our unthinking fools on the right.Which was what I was referring to.

                • Pete George

                  But I never act like a pack animal braying after a victim around on mob instinct as I have seen numerous times from our unthinking fools on the right.

                  And I didn’t suggest you did.

                  But do you think this “pack animal braying after a victim around on mob instinct” is exclusive to the right?

                  Before you answer that I suggest you have a look at the thread following my last comment.

      • English Breakfast 18.6.2

        I agree. The Field case is irrelevant.

    • Dirty Politics was a lesson to the Left about how much the NZ public is immune to stories that make the heroic KeyMaster look bad. They don’t want to believe that the emperor has no clothes…

    • Murray Rawshark 18.8

      Farrar employs 25 NActoids at Curia now?

    • framu 18.9

      so everyone in your office doesnt understand what “conflict of interest
      means – i seriously hope none of you are in positions of authority, because you just called you and all your colleagues, ignorant

  19. A Voter 19

    Yes Key IS A LYING MANIPULATING SHYTE and now he wants us to go to war
    Tell him to go fight his Zionist war on his own we dont hand our allegiance to a war that many say is a construct of USA and Israel anyway

  20. North 20

    It’s too suspicious that when Key’s responses/demeanour scream out “I’m lying”, TS suddenly has visits from new commenters inhabiting the spectrum from unconditional fervour for GodKeyism to disingenuous concern for the fortunes of the Left. Then just as suddenly they disappear, the baton handed to another new but otherwise never seen commenter. Guess it’s an easier and marginally more remunerative number than stuffing supermarket flyers in letterboxes.

    Of particular note are those who impliedly claim left-wing provenance by assuming names redolent of traditional Left/Labour values as a cover for having no values of any sort. Old Mickey for example.

  21. whateva next? 21

    Had to listen to Plunket spinning wildly this a.m, “gotcha politics” being branded about AGAIN…..oh puleeeze Mr.Plunkett, I don’t think so sir. At some point Key has to held to the same account as every other manager in NZ. If a Health service manager knew that one of his employees [Speculation sorry – MS], he would be expected to take action, what action does Key take? gives Sabin Law and Order committee, how does that work Mr.Plunkett? and if Little had immediately asked Key in parliament if he had any politicians under investigation for serious charges, and called a press conference…that would have been “gotcha politics” maybe, but Little, as usual was respectful measured and did the right thing.
    No comparison Mr.Plunkett:
    dignity/integrity =Little
    lies/abuse of power =Key

  22. fisiani 22

    Andrew Little is the most principled Labour leader that Union money bought. He is yapping away but will not make a dent on Honest John. He is too tarnished by having no caucus support and having to await an inevitable challenge from Grant Robertson.

    • Quick, if you call him “angry” I get a whole row on my Rightwing Spin Bingo card! 🙄

      • Atiawa 22.1.1

        I’m getting rid of my tv sports channels in anticipation of parliaments opening.
        The Aussie tennis open, the super bowl & rugby, the 7s & 9s, the cricket world cup and the under 21’s football world cup will all seem timid affairs in comparison to this years parliamentary session.
        Bring it on and go the underdog’s!

        • b waghorn


    • Te Reo Putake 22.2

      Great memes revisited No94: the Putative Robertson Challenge. As seen in Kiwiblog in 2011, 2012, twice in 2013, and again in early 2014. As not seen in the Labour caucus room ever.

      If you’re worried about coups, why don’t you look closer to home. Judith Collins looked positively radiant on the telly today. I wonder why?

    • tricledrown 22.3

      Fisanal you have been sniffing Tony Abbotts budgie smugglers for to long.
      The Guardian has outed Margret Thatcher for covering up MI6 agent’s
      Pedophelia preferences.

  23. North 23

    Plunket made an utter dick of himself over Catton and he knows it. Only the most insecure of crawlers congratulated him as he walked through RadioLive’s reception the following day.

    Hectoring bullies like him suffer the character defect of being dispositionally quite unable to withdraw gracefully, even when it’s in their overall interests. The delusional sense of omnipresence does not permit it. Would not contribute to the figment of ‘manliness’.

    That’s what the insufferable wahanui was up to today; in the painful knowledge that he own-goaled, the stroking of his battered ego. Mouthing off at/to himself really. Never fear, he’ll come right. Until the next time he feels insecure.

  24. Neil 24

    The biggest issue about this Sabin saga, is if nbr.co.nz are correct in saying that national knew about this way before the election, is of standing someone in an election who is under police investigation for a serious crime.
    That fact on its own could be construed as election fraud.
    The fact that Key says he didn’t know about this till Dec beggars belief, because of the fact that everybody else in National knew & that Slater appears to know all about it.
    Keys scalp is just a bonus in this.

  25. Jester 25

    Kinda surprised that with such depth of political experience here that people are still suggesting that Key appointed Sabin as chair of the Select Committee.


    • Te Reo Putake 25.1

      I’m surprised you think he didn’t. National have control over who gets to chair the select committees as they have the majority of votes in each one. So, yep, appointed by Key kinda sums it up nicely.

  26. Jester 26

    You give Key too much credit assuming he micro manages like Auntie Helen did.

    One moment you are suggesting he’s hands off and the next he is all controlling.

    Considering the rules about conduct of select com members, I’m also surprised that since Sabins issue was well known at the time that Goff didn’t object to the appointment as is his right to do so.

    • Te Reo Putake 26.1

      “Sabin’s issue was well known at the time”

      Known a week or so after the election? That doesn’t add up. You calling John Key a liar?

      PS, what’s Goff got to do with it? He’s not on the Laura Norder Select Committee.

      • jester 26.1.1

        Well rumors were rife in Wellington. So Key didn’t act on them, apparently neither did Goff during Select Committe establishment, neither did Cunliffe pre election and apparently Mr Little was happy to have a we won’t take it further chat between leaders offices.

        All seems a tight little boys club to me.

        • Te Reo Putake

          Sabin was a Nat MP. It’s National’s problem. If, as you say, it was well known in Wellington, then Key is lying. Nothing Cunliffe, Goff or Little did or didn’t do changes that.

        • freedom

          I am not aware of any evidence that Labour knew anything about the situation prior to Mike Sabin’s appointment to The Law and Order Select Committee.

          Sabin was appointed Chair of The Law and Order Select Committee on October 22.

          Police were asking questions well before that.

          Any questions of responsibility to the PM being made aware of the situation and taking appropriate action prior to Mike Sabin’s appointment to The Law and Order Select Committee surely must fall to the Government in that circumstance.

        • Tracey

          Are you saying key has no say on who goes on to which Select Committee? (leaving aside the vote for Chairman)

        • Tracey

          So Goff didnt acually vote for Sabin as Chair as you suggest cos he wasn’t on the Committee then?

      • jester 26.1.2

        Goff not on Law and Order Community. Are you sure? I believe he replaced Jacinda.

        • Te Reo Putake

          You’re right, but Goff wasn’t on the committee when Sabin was ‘elected’ chair in late October, so he wasn’t in a position to do anything about it, assuming he actually knew anything anyway.

    • Lanthanide 26.2

      John Key is actually the leader of the National Party, in addition to being PM. He does, in that capacity, have a certain amount of responsibility for personnel decisions and the development of MPs in his party; he is now suggesting that Sabin was on the shortlist for being a minister in this term of office, for example.

      So whether or not Key directly appointed him, he certainly would have been shown a draft list of appointees which he could have chosen to veto or suggested changes to if he thought there was someone else more deserving or more useful to have in a particular position.

  27. Red delusion 27

    I am surprised the left still think gotcha politics is a winning strategy, to the contrary it is detrimental to left, one big turn off, yawn zzzzzzzzz.

  28. Red delusion 28

    I am surprised the left still think gotcha politics is a winning strategy, to the contrary it is detrimental to the left, one big turn off, yawn zzzzzzzzz.

  29. Red delusion 29

    hilarious, don’t quit your day job,

  30. Whateva next? 30

    Crickey the type of people discussed on page 25 of DP are OUT IN FORCE.
    Trying to twist everything, and even make suggestions that Little doesn’t care about the Jordanian pilot burned alive, they are disgusting to use other’s suffering for political games.
    Little is managing to rise above the embarrassing prods and pokes deliberately chosen to provoke, so that National can deflect from their grubby behaviour again saying “hey everybody look at angry Andy”…………so predictable, just like you Red delusion

    • Pete George 30.1

      Except that Little’s claim is based on his ‘belief’ and not on facts. And Key has belatedly come up with an explanation.

      Prime Minister John Key has rejected claims by Andrew Little that he was “a liar” over when he was first told about the personal issues relating to former National MP Mike Sabin.

      “It’s a slightly disappointing path he is going down that other leaders did,” Mr Key said, in response to claims Mr Key had lied.

      “In the end I knew on December 1. His argument is that as Prime Minister I must know everything. But if that’s a logical argument, why would his office ring my office to give me a heads up.”

      Mr Key says his chief of staff, Wayne Eagleson, found out on November 25 that Mr Sabin was being investigated by police. He went on to gather further information and Mr Key said he had been comfortable with the process Mr Eagleson had gone through.

      Mr Key said that given the information he had at the time, he believed there was no need to stand down Mr Sabin as chairman of the law and order select committee.

      John Key says Andrew Little is wrong over timing of Mike Sabin knowledge

      Key has finally come up with a plausible-ish explanation. Little has to be careful not to overplay his hand without something solid to back him up.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 30.1.1


        Or not.

        NBR understands the PM was first made aware of the assault complaint in April last year, months before the September 20 ballot – and that the National Party knew before the 2011 election.

        • Pete George

          Have there been any more details about that? It may be apples and oranges – ‘the assault complaint’ sounds distinctly different to some claims of what this is about.

          • One Anonymous Bloke


          • Sabine

            It’s Pineapples mate, apple and orange are so yesterday and hardly anyone remembers them.

          • mickysavage


            Key has finally come up with a plausible-ish explanation.

            So far Key has said he learned about the Sabin issue:

            1. in mid December
            2. in early December
            3. on December 1

            And that McCarten told Eagleson about the Sabin issue on December 3 and it was definately after Key had learned about the issue.

            Little said (without notes) he learned and Eagleson was told of the issues no later than November 28. Following notes being confirmed he specified the date to be November 26.

            So Key has provided three different dates and asserted he learned about the issue before Labour told him. And Little has provided the evidence to show this clearly is not so.

            Clearer evidence of fibbing is hard to imagine.

            And if I was in Parliament I would OIA the Minister of Police this question:

            “Under the no suprises policy has the Police or any other Government Agency advised her of issues concerning former MP Mike Sabin and if so on what date?”

          • freedom


            An investigation of assault is investigation of assault and the people who would have been told an MP was facing investigation of an assault would have told the people they are meant to tell when there is a MP involved in an investigation of assault.

            Forget what others say think or do for one second, do you honestly believe the message did not get through to the PM until December?
            p.s. this is a Yes or No question. It requires nothing more.

            • Tracey

              or that Wayne, Chief of Staff only heard the rumour when Little’s office told him?

            • Pete George

              There’s too much unknown about this and there’s such a wide range of possibilities to answer simply yes or no.

              From what I’ve read I’m surprised about Key’s claims that he knew nothing more sooner but there’s too much uncertainty for me to not believe him at this stage.

              NBR haven’t followed up on their story and Andrew Little seems to have stopped pushing anything on it.

              How Key, National and the media have been on this raises questions but barely answers anything.

              • freedom

                “From what I’ve read I’m surprised about Key’s claims that he knew nothing more sooner but there’s too much uncertainty for me to not believe him at this stage.”

                so that’s a Yes. [1]

                [1] Exculpatory answer only pertinent at the time of writing [2]

                [2] A prevarication device to accommodate alterations in any dissembling admission upon the future discovery of currently undisclosed evidence.

                • Pete George

                  No it’s not a Yes to your question. Too many unknowns and too little proof.

                  • weka

                    welcome to the Beige Hole, that sucks everything into the muddle.

                    • freedom

                      Pete George, the only guy in the world who can flip a thousand coins and have them land on the edge every single time .

                    • Pete George

                      Some people seem to have trouble thinking beyond ‘right bad, left good’.

                      And others are just obsessed with stalking.

                    • weka

                      Dude, I’ve been a Green voter pretty much all of my life. We invented beyond left/right.

                      “And others are just obsessed with stalking.”

                      Says the man with a blog devoted to his obsessions with bloggers 🙄

              • mickysavage

                There’s too much unknown about this and there’s such a wide range of possibilities to answer simply yes or no.

                Um Key has said he found out about Sabin’s problems on three different dates. How much choice do you need?

      • whateva next? 30.1.2

        You have missed my point Mr.George. I was referring to the attempts to adopt a patronising sanctimonious position by National trolls, rather than an intelligent discussion, and answers to legitimate questions.
        Provoking the leader of the opposition is the ONLY strategy or response to anything ( apart from finding things to sell) , yet Labour are the ones being accused of lacking ideas.

      • Skinny 30.1.3

        Reading your opinion Pete I note your not commenting on the obvious question.

        Going off what Key is saying one can then assume the elephant in the room is what appears to be a procedural problem involving the police.

        So they are conducting an investigation into allegations against a current Government MP. The nature of which are serious enough that it has lead to him resigning, all be it under the guise of ‘personal matters’. So no alarm bells no need for the police conducting the investigation to contact the minister of police who then contacts the leader of the governing party, Key the prime minister.

        Are we now going to see Key-National buckpassing on to the polices inactions?

      • framu 30.1.4

        i for one am thoroughly sick of this outright time waster and apologist stinking up the place

  31. Jim Hawthorne 31

    and here is the first article i see as being biased. even the mainstream media (garner for one) were reporting that “everybody” knew about Sabin before the election. It seems to me Little has been briefed by shadow government and has decided to tow the line- now saying he only knew much later. In my view, the entire election/elitecon went ahead with everyone knowing Sabin a suspected violent offender (or worse). Thus the 2014 election was run on a platform of what could have been “domestic abuse” – and nothing else. that is the standard we are now faced with. with even the ‘opposition’ helping cover it up – in my view.

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