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John Key – The End Game

Written By: - Date published: 3:33 pm, August 21st, 2014 - 149 comments
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It is one of the wonders of the modern world that the democracy that past generations fought and died for is regarded as of little consequence by those who currently enjoy its benefits.

While many parts of the world are still struggling – and suffering – under forms of government that fall short of the democratic ideal, we take it for granted at best and at worst do nothing to sustain it.

Yet sustain it we must. Democracy is a fragile flower. Without proper sustenance, it will easily wither and die. We cannot simply assume that it will always be there, whether or not we bother to give it any attention.

It was Francis Fukuyama who observed that even the most repressive regimes could not survive without the support – perhaps passive and tacit – of a large part of the population. Democratic government, treated with similar passivity, can just as easily be supplanted by something that falls far short of genuine democracy.

That is why the current crisis about dirty politics is so important. It is not, as so many commentators seem to assume and assert, a distraction from the real issues that should decide the forthcoming election result; it raises exactly the kind of fundamental issue that the election should be, must be, about.

The whole point of democracy is that we should put in place a government that properly represents our interests and that we can trust with that power. Democracy is not just about elections; it is about being able to make the elected government accountable for what it does in office.

It is essential, if democracy is to be a reality, that our elected representatives should tell us the truth and should not use the power of government to serve their own ends rather than the country’s. We should be vigilant in ensuring that this is so – and we should act swiftly if it is not.

The charges that are now accumulating against the John Key government could not, in this context, be more serious. Put briefly, there are now unavoidable questions that must be answered.

Did John Key and his ministers pervert the country’s security intelligence services so as to serve their own party’s interests rather than to protect those of New Zealand? Did they use that power to discredit their political opponents in a concealed, underhand and partisan way? And, having done so, did they then consistently lie to the New Zealand public in an attempt to conceal the truth?

These questions arise, not because of some “left-wing conspiracy”, but because the evidence is now overwhelming that something has gone seriously wrong. It wasn’t a left-wing conspiracy that arranged for Cameron Slater to get unprecedentedly quick and preferential access to a security report prepared by the SIS – access that had already been denied to other more mainstream media.

It wasn’t a left-wing conspiracy that induced John Key to deny that he knew anything about that arrangement, in the face of the growing evidence that he had been specifically briefed on it by the SIS Director. Does anyone really believe that the Prime Minister (and the leader of TeamKey), who is also the Minister for the SIS, was left in ignorance of a surprising SIS decision to release at short notice a hitherto protected report about the Leader of the Opposition to a notorious right-wing blogger in the middle of an election campaign?

And it wasn’t a left-wing conspiracy that induced the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, concerned as she no doubt is to maintain the integrity of the SIS, to begin an official inquiry into the whole sorry saga. Her decision is powerful evidence that these issues must be treated seriously, even if the time taken to complete a review could conveniently defer an outcome until after the election.

So far, the reaction of the voters to this unfolding drama has been one of bemusement. Early opinion polls suggest that those who have grown accustomed to trusting John Key are reluctant to have their faith shaken.

But, in a democracy, it is important that we demand high standards from our government and are ready to act when the evidence shows that those standards have not been met. A government that abused its power and that lied – in the most deliberate and formal way – to those who voted them in would not be fit to stay in office.

The questions that have now been raised in all seriousness now demand answers. When we get those answers, and that cannot now be far away, the ball will then be in our court.

If we are not prepared to bestir ourselves, but prefer to turn a blind eye, we would not only be acquiescing in the perversion of democracy in the here and now. We would also be betraying the legacy bequeathed to us by those who fought and sacrificed to guarantee the freedoms we now enjoy.

Bryan Gould

21 August 2014

 

149 comments on “John Key – The End Game”

  1. cogito 1

    Excellent. Thank you, Bryan. Why are these points not being voiced more widely?

  2. aerobubble 2

    Children who are abused, having grownup without access to benefits of a civil culture, sometime become brutes in adult life. That’s not to say every member of a gang is a brute, but that gang culture does reflect some the unfavorable childhood of its members. So I would argue the rise of gangs is a reflection of uncivilized values held by our government, parliament, media and society, in the pursuit of profit and winning at all costs. We are a corrupt society when such a large minority live such savage lives on the margin.

    Its no surprise that with the shrinking global economy due to higher growing prices for energy that the corrupt festering nature of right wing Toryism is being exposed along with all its myth making and greed at all cost practices.

  3. Heather Tanguay 3

    What an outstanding column by Bryan Gould. There are so many countries around the world where democracy is a wishful dream by the citizens. In New Zealand we have always had the luxury of a trusted democracy that we could believe in. As Bryan says.. ‘it’s now time that we have some answers’, we deserve the answers and we need those answers before the country goes to an election.

    • Red Rosa 3.1

      +1

      Great stuff, Bryan. And just read your ‘NZ’s Nixon’ – brilliant.

      Currently the National Party are deploying unprecedented money, and all the power that goes with office, to ensure their re-election. Their contempt for ordinary Kiwis is barely concealed, but fully expressed by the Whaleoil blog and its comments.

      Maybe Nicky Hager’s book will expose this to a wider audience. Let’s hope so.

    • Chooky 3.2

      +100 great Post

    • North 3.3

      Outstanding alright from Bryan Gould. Philosophical on a note that Jamie Whyte of ACT could only muse about and John Key could only puzzle about. Were he to step away from the risible “relaxed”.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.3.1

        Philosophical on a note that Jamie Whyte of ACT could only muse about and John Key could only puzzle about.

        Oh, I’m pretty sure that both would be thoroughly puzzled and out of their depth.

  4. yeshe 4

    Thank you, Bryan. Wish you were in Parliament.

  5. Macro 5

    Amen to all you say Bryan. We have had a direct attack on our Democratic process from the word go with this current “administration”. The over use of “Urgency” in the House, the complete disregard of submissions at the Committee stages of Legislation; the short notice for the introduction of fundamental law changes; the constant disregard for the Bill of Rights; the persistent cronyism, arrogance, and complete disregard for accountability, to list but a few, is flabbergasting.
    More importantly I believe, is their utter failure to address the needs of the most vulnerable in our society. That is what a democratic society is all about – government of ALL the people, by the people, For ALL the people. Not just the wealthy.
    The dirty politics which was laid out by Lusk and Slater in 2005 and employed by Key at al, and evidenced in Hager’s well researched book, is simply the underbelly of a corrupt group besotted with power, and privilege, who will stop at almost nothing to get their way.

  6. Man in a Barrel 6

    Yes, but we don’t have a democracy. We have a system which allows the majority to oppress the minority to the extent that it chooses to. Just ask the Maori.

    The limits of that oppression of the minority by the majority under a Democracy are imposed by the unwritten cultural norms of the times. In good times the majority can be tolerant of the minority. In bad times minorities can suffer – just think of what happens to aliens and/or conscientious objectors in war-time even in ‘Democracies’. What could happen to me today if I personally see nothing wrong with rolling myself a joint – and growing the herbs to go in it?

    Winston Churchill observed, “Indeed it has been said that democ­racy is the worst form of Gov­ern­ment, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.…” So while we do need to be on our guard to protect Democracy against forms of government that are worse let’s not put it on a pedestal as the author does above. What matters far more are virtues such as tolerance, peace, the willingness to listen and charity all of which are not exclusive to Democracy as a system – which virtues some of the senion members of the present Government have shown themselves to be sadly lacking in. That is why they should go, as an example to the others.

  7. McFlock 7

    well said.

    Does anyone really believe that the Prime Minister (and the leader of TeamKey), who is also the Minister for the SIS, was left in ignorance of a surprising SIS decision to release at short notice a hitherto protected report about the Leader of the Opposition to a notorious right-wing blogger in the middle of an election campaign?

    That’s where it’s beginning to sound awfully Banksian. Key’s defence seems to be that his office was told rather than himself directly, and nobody in his office told him. The only reason to withold that information from him would be “plausible deniability”, i.e. it would be in his interests to not know.

    Thing is, key’s best case is that he ran his office to be corrupt but shield him from blame. Machinations like that tend to bite people in the arse, because (as banks showed) intentionally avoiding “knowing” something is as bad as actually knowing it.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1

      Key gave the orders. I hope some of our esteemed Jonolists ask him questions based on that assumption.

      Start with his remarks about his office: ‘If they speak, I’m speaking.’ Does that translate to ‘If they leak, I’m leaky’?

      Prime Minister, how many times did you meet with or have discussions with Warren Tucker between July 20th and August 1st 2011? What date(s) was/were those discussion(s)?

      You have to get inside his lying head and ask specifics, and don’t expect to get straight answers. Especially, don’t give up: he’ll use forms of words that you won’t always be able to unpack on the fly. Take your time.

    • Jenk 7.2

      To McFlock and One A Bloke – ShonKey’s defence now is that he was on holiday when all this was happening. And so far, it hasn’t occurred to the media to ask him : doesn’t he get information about what is going on while he’s on holiday, and isn’t he in daily contact with his main office person who should be keeping him informed of potentially contentious issues ?

      Update : I’ve just read the comments in Antony Robins post “Key Lied” and it seems that while he was still on holiday, he (ShonKey) had an interview with Guyon Espiner in which he said Goff was given the same information that he was.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 7.2.1

        There isn’t going to be a question that exposes the fact that Key gave the order to ratfuck Goff. There just isn’t. Even if Ede (or Tucker or Collins or Slater or whoever) goes rogue and opts for a plea-bargain, it will be he said Key said.

      • Tracey 7.2.2

        yup, more obsfication… The media should have known about q and a and been abke to quickly follow up…

    • Lloyd 7.3

      Didn’t I hear donkey saying, this week, that “”he ran a pretty tight office”?

      Wouldn’t “a pretty tight office” tell the boss that the SIS was shopping Phil Goff?

  8. Jenk 8

    To One A Bloke – over on The Daily Blog someone has posted details of what is required of staff when OIAs are requested. Its an eye-opener. And makes what ShonKey is saying unbelievable.

    • emergency mike 8.1

      Exactly, Key has abandoned the ‘plausible’ part of plausible deniability. He’s gone for more of a Bart Simpson I know my alibi sounds very convenient and unbelievable at the same time but you can’t prove it wrong defence.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2

      Of course it’s “unbelievable” – the whole trick relies on the notion that the CEO is honest, or even better, above it all. A considerable amount of time and energy goes into establishing that narrative.

      Look at the manifest denial all around us. It’s “unbelievable” alright.

  9. One Anonymous Bloke 9

    For those hoping to take Key down: a warning, that perhaps Simon Lusk can relate to. Killing such a magnificent creature will leave you feeling disappointed, and whet your appetite for another one.

    In this way we become the things we hate.

    • I don’t think the desire to ‘take down John Key’, as you put it, need be done from a position of hate.

      Much of the time I actually – and quite genuinely – feel sorry for John Key the person. I am very glad I am not him.

      But I think it is also the ‘right thing to do’ to do what we can to speak against and move against a form of politics that has no virtue.

      In fact, for me this is about far more than taking scalps or even the outcome of the upcoming election.

      It has to do with something deep in New Zealand culture that I don’t like and think is harmful. It’s similar to the changes that have been happening in other countries and it feels more and more pervasive in so many areas of life.

      If I was going to put it mythologically, it would be a sense of the darkening clouds from Mordor or the devastation visited on the land surrounding Camelot when Mordred took power. Less poetically, it’s like the rotten royal courts of Europe, filled with deception, stratagems and pettiness but with the outcomes of all that pettiness destroying the lives of the ‘common people’.

      Politics I guess is just where all of this warping of our society and values in so many areas of life comes to a visible public head.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1.1

        That contest never ends, not least because for every Key that gets found out there’s another one ready to step up. It wasn’t so long ago Collins was a contender, eh.

  10. Humph 10

    Well said.

    I’d like to add that democracy should also be available between elections, as transparency and accountability can be forced onto an out of control government who act like the law doesn’t apply to them.

  11. Thank God David Cunliffe has had the sense to have Mallard bound and gagged and locked in a closet.

    A whole week has gone by without anyone in Labour fucking things up. Incredible. Long may it continue!

    • karol 11.1

      Or because, if nothing else, Dirty Politics has resulted in the effective muzzling of the Nats covert black ops?

      Excellent post, Bryan. yes, it is about democracy. And the conduct of government and the people who run it, are election issues.

    • the pigman 11.2

      Mallard is probably keeping his mouth firmly shut out of concern for the depths of his association with Slater and what might come out in a whaledump. Remember Slater has “sources” amongst the Labour MPs.

      From a portion from Slater’s conversation with Lusk, where they are discussing which electorate into which to parachute Maggie Barry (and talking about farming McCully off to Italy):

      Cameron Slater, 1/29, 5:40am

      One seat that would suit her would be East Coast Bays. The current MP is long in the tooth, not well liked, has purposely kept membership under 200 as a deliberate tactic. By mounting a challenge it is at the Board’s discretion and could well see McCully farmed off as Ambassador to Italy to share war stories of his conquests with Silvio Berlusconi. The demographics of the electorate suit an older candidate with gardening credentials.
      ————————-
      Simon Lusk, 1/29, 5:43am

      good move
      ————————-
      Cameron Slater, 1/29, 5:43am

      […]

      shit this utu post is going to cause some rumbles

      chaos and mayhem
      ————————-
      Simon Lusk, 1/29, 5:45am

      yes get a journo to ask mccully if he has 200 members
      ————————-
      Cameron Slater, 1/29, 5:46am

      i’ve told Malalrd [sic] and a few other pinkos as well
      ————————-
      Simon Lusk, 1/29, 5:49am

      thats bloody awesome

      you can do a follow up post

      muzza gives JK options

      not enough members, so it goes to board selection, and the PM can give him the ares [sic]”

      At very least we can infer that Mallard has been a pawn in Slater and Lusk’s manipulation of National Party internal politics.

      • Bill 11.2.1

        Pigman. You really need to link to the source and not just cut and paste. Is this from the ‘whaledump’ releases or not?

        • the pigman 11.2.1.1

          Apologies, linked it in the Crusher thread so thought it’d be overkill.

          http://pastebin.com/ntEhGCtM

          This appears to have been posted in pastebin yesterday, but @whaledump hadn’t linked to it on twitter last I checked. It was linked to by @JoshBrodieNZ on the Dirty Politics twitter page.

          A cursory look (and I’ve read the whole thing) leaves one in little doubt as to its authenticity.

          • Bill 11.2.1.1.1

            So, help me out here.

            If whoever is doing the ‘whaledump’ releases is only releasing on ‘whaledump’ (I believe that’s the case), then how do you verify the authenticity of any other source that isn’t ‘mirrored’ on ‘whaledump’?

            See, I can quite easily envisage someone staying up for a while and pissing fictional nonsense all over various release mediums in an attempt to ultimately undermine the whole caboodle.

            edit: just to note that the link in the other thread wasn’t to ‘whaledump’

            edit 2. It doesn’t read the same as the other extensive release of email exchanges. And acknowledging that people speak differently to different people…

            • the pigman 11.2.1.1.1.1

              Here’s the thing:

              • all of the leaks so far have been posted on a site called pastebin. pastebin is primarily a tool to enable programmers to paste code for certain periods of time for convenience.
              • it allows people to post anonymously, as a guest, so you can imagine for hackers (who are typically programmers) it is a convenient place for dumping leaks
              • both @whaledump and @JoshBrodieNZ have simply linked to content on pastebin. No content is hosted by either whaledump or JoshBrodieNZ and they don’t have “sites” per se.

              I understand your suspicion, but I don’t agree with you that they dumps don’t read the same. But as FJK would say, judge for yourselves 🙂

              Edit: I would also invite you to check out Josh Brodie’s blog: http://www.joshbrodie.co.nz/2014/08/21/national-party-web-security.html – doesn’t seem like the type to make shit up – too interested in hacking.

              • the pigman

                Also, Bill, if you’re still skeptical, the reason @JoshBrodieNZ’s tweet (linking the pastebin dump) came to my attention was because the @DirtyPoliticsNZ (which is presumably run by Hager or his publicists) retweeted it, causing it to appear on his/their page (as good as an endorsement of the content).

                Put another way, I don’t think @DirtyPoliticsNZ, who also have this material assuming its genuine, would retweet a pastebin dump knowing it to be false.

              • karol

                On twitter, the guy said he’d found it on a pastebin search. That whaledump had set it up for a later publication but, somehow, on pastebin it was visible to someone doing a search.

  12. And there are millions of people worldwide, in the US for example, who would crawl on their knees to a voting booth kissing the ground all the way if their vote for a minor party could mean something – as it does for us with MMP.

    http://minimalistmum.blogspot.co.nz/2014/06/is-it-smart-to-vote.html

    • lilman 12.1

      mmp is a dog.

      I voted labour all my life, and now my party is going to deal with KDC ,Mana and the greens.

      This will be the first time in my 50 plus years I wont vote at all.

      Its disgusting to think we have come to this.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1.1

        Gosh, another ‘ex-Labour voter’. Why are you so negative? Be specific. What is it about Green policy you don’t like? My guess is you don’t know any; it’s on their website: knock yourself out.

      • tricledrown 12.1.2

        wow scraping the bottom of the barrel littleman why don’t you just stick with national and stop BSing us sounds like an old exclusive brethren line

      • Molly 12.1.3

        I don’t understand this attitude, unless it relates to being able to pick a winning “team” and then bask in that reflected (and completely unearned and irrelevant) glory.

        As soon as our goverment is elected, they should realise that they are in service of ALL constituents, including guardians of future NZers and the environment.

        MMP (even in this imperfect form) at least attempts to reflect the voting choices of all who choose to vote, and it is reasonable to assume that those elected should be mature enough to figure out how to work together for three years.

        If they are not, then they should not be in charge of anything – let alone a country.

      • DS 12.1.4

        So you voted Labour in 2011, knowing that Labour (if it got the chance to) would deal with the Greens, Mana, and Winston Peters.

        Yet, you are somehow disgusted with it in 2014. Yeah right.

      • Hi lilman,

        It must be difficult for you to adjust to the fact that the Labour you voted for all your life was an illusion, and that so many other Labour voters actually had opinions that were suppressed by the FPP system.

        It can be startling to find out how many people are different from you, and tough to allow them a voice that is as important as yours.

  13. newsense 13

    Can’t wait until the Prime Minister has a chance to catch up with the Minister for the SIS! Wouldn’t want to be a fly on the wall when that happens…(to channel John Stewart)

    Seems like either option 1) Key should resign for using the SIS for political ends and lying about it
    or option 2) Key should resign as he runs a department where his Department head lies to the
    press in OIA complaints. This is particularly important for the SIS as it is a very
    secretive arm of government and we rely on the honesty of the Minister as our
    check on their power.

    Neither of his stories it seems to me allows him any wriggle room. We will see.

    • newsense 13.1

      weak from both the major tv outlets. No mention of the Dominion Post request on TV3 or TVNZ. Both framed with a pro-National statement “failing to make a dent in John Key’s armour” on TVNZ and ” ‘trying’ to cast doubt” Fuck off. It doesn’t try to cast doubt- it means either he or his top spy lied to the public. It casts doubt.

      Poor journalism. Lazy journalism. At best.

      Bloody hell Corin Dann- giving Key an absolutely uncritical platform- it was a low level matter ( about the leader of the opposition during an election campaign – and it was released to a National Party hit blogger in record time, who knew about it in advance, when it wasn’t released to the Dominion Post, in an area that was Key’s area of responsibility) . Not as Key says something that he gets briefed on from time to time.

      Nothing to see here Mr Dann? Really mate? Not at all plausible denibility.

  14. Mike the Savage One 14

    “It is one of the wonders of the modern world that the democracy that past generations fought and died for is regarded as of little consequence by those who currently enjoy its benefits.”

    Just reading the first sentence made me think.

    The reality we live in is indeed immensely worrying, as the vast majority of the public are so poorly or superficially informed about what goes on, we do not have enough informed voters, I fear.

    Living in a technologically, legally and bureaucratically very complex society, most struggle with the demands, rules and norms to meet when doing their daily work, study and business activities.

    Government and politics are equally complex, and while the legislative is busy making laws, we must realise that most do not even know or understand most of the laws there are, that affect us all.

    So few have time to bother following all these revelations in the Hager book and that are being released day by day by an anonymous hacker. I read the messages exchanged by Slater and his mate Bhatnagar last night, which are on Twitter (search for “#Whaledump”), and it is shocking, what just that revealed, about the casual talk between the two, who is in or out in the National Party, who “deserves” what job in business, the party and whatever other organisations.

    Not only can we see how the “Whale” has been busy hunting, harming, discrediting and character assassinating political enemies, some in the media and various institutions, it shows that politics (certainly on the National and ACT Party sides) is closely intertwined with big and not so big business.

    These guys were and probably still are working closely with people in the PM’s office, with certain ministers (e.g. Collins), and with some in government departments, to achieve outcomes keeping them in power, and benefiting themselves or lobbyists and vested interest parties they are aligned with.

    New Zealand is corrupt, more than many think and know, but the MSM are already tiring from the daily revelations, and there is now a slow acceptance that Key will fight this out, as the news on TV just showed, so here we go again, one of the biggest problems is the mainstream media, that do not dig deeper, that only want a head like Collins’ to roll, so that after such symbolic action all continues as usual, and so that the powers that be will carry on as nothing major will have happened.

    People are dosing through their day to day routine, are almost asleep at the wheel, and the country is hijacked by powers that do not have your and my interest on their mind.

    Time to claim democracy back, as what we have is not the real thing, it is a FARCE.

  15. NZ seems to be a democratic country in the same way it is a Christian country – sort of, but not really.

  16. Foreign waka 16

    It is great that some have the means and understanding to grasp what Bryan wrote. Unfortunately, the majority – and I am not exaggerating – has no understanding of the wider picture, be it historically or politically. It would not be a big surprise if the same party, hat has shown us how to get away with the most undemocratic and corrupt behavior that has seen the light, would win the election. Sad as it may be, but with a Maori King saying his son should not be held accountable and Mr Key basically shrugging his shoulders regarding the latest revelations, the average person just looks for their “cut”. Sad, but true.

    • Lefty 16.1

      Voting is the act of ceding a part of ones personal sovereignty to a political party because of an assumption that this will serve the common good by putting structures, laws and processes in place that make the country function in a fairer and more accountable manner.

      The right to vote is an important part of democracy and is hard won but it is becoming increasingly meaningless.

      And this is not just because of ‘dirty politics’ which are really symptom of the underlying problem.

      Regardless of who we vote for the ruling class will pull their strings. There is no political party promising economic democracy, just a bunch of poseurs pretending they will make things better but with no intention of challenging the filthy capitalism which distorts and poisons every human relationship between those who are subject to it.

      Things have got so bad that much of the campaigning in this election is being done on the basis of ‘Get rid of this government’ because the parties know there is not really sufficient reason for those who have seen through the democratic farce to bother turning out to vote for their minor reforms of a fucked system.

      We are also seeing increasingly bizarre political parties and combinations springing up and gaining some support as people seek desperately to make sense of a broken and incomprehensible parliamentary system.

      Yes we need to get rid of this corrupt government.

      Then the day after the election we need to start getting rid of the next corrupt government because deep down we all know that is exactly what it will be.

    • Anne 16.2

      It is great that some have the means and understanding to grasp what Bryan wrote. Unfortunately, the majority – and I am not exaggerating – has no understanding of the wider picture, be it historically or politically.

      Was thinking of commenting along the same lines but don’t have to now. If your common (I don’t mean common in class terms)-garden voter read Bryan Gould’s excellent post, they wouldn’t have a clue what he is talking about. Sad but true.

      • Peter 16.2.1

        Sad but true ….. all Key has to do is to keep pulling the wool over the eyes of the middle of the road swing voter and the election is his.

  17. marsman 17

    Thank you Bryan Gould!

  18. The whole point of democracy is that we should put in place a government that properly represents our interests and that we can trust with that power. Democracy is not just about elections; it is about being able to make the elected government accountable for what it does in office.

    Accountability has always been a part of the natural world and it is essential to the ideal of justice. When we delegate our power to others we are accountable for the use or misuse of that power.

    The problem of misuse of power by elected representatives is confronted by the rule of law, a pre-existent description of ethics and consequences which applies as much to society as a group as it does to individual people. The rule of law separates a true democracy from mob rule, and confronts the UN doctrine that the will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government.

    The problems that we see today represent the culmination of our failure as a society to act responsibly and rationally towards the state. To make scapegoats of Slater, Collins, or Key is to deny our own role in enabling the system that supports them, and does nothing to identify the source of the corruption or to find a remedy for it.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1

      Dribbly wibbly bibbly. Are you good for anything?

      • UglyTruth 18.1.1

        I seem to be good at drawing out hypocrites.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1.1.1

          Gutless, too: unable to say what you mean without the weasel word “seem”.

        • tricledrown 18.1.1.2

          Ugly Truth being one gives you a big advantage

          • UglyTruth 18.1.1.2.1

            Slander is never a good look, tricledown.

            • McFlock 18.1.1.2.1.1

              Isn’t truth a defence against defamation?

              • UglyTruth

                Sure is.
                The burden of proof lies with the one making the accusation, i.e. tricledown.

                • McFlock

                  Your comment history is proof enough. You’re a liar and a fool, as well as a hypocrite.

                  • UglyTruth

                    If you you weren’t completely full of shit you could quote something that I said that supports your accusation.

                    • McFlock

                      I already linked to you being a liar and a fool.
                      Rich pointed out your hypocrisy in this thread.

                    • UglyTruth

                      I already linked to you being a liar and a fool.

                      You mean this post?

                      John Key – The End Game

                      Like I said before, the fact that you can’t quote anything of mine that supports your accusation shows that you are full of shit, McFlock.

                      Rich pointed out your hypocrisy in this thread.

                      Hey fuckwit, what he actually said was: “I don’t know the background but if anyone is going to level an accusation of hypocrisy then it needs back-up.”

                    • McFlock

                      You showed yourself familiar with links.
                      Where do the links in my comment go? Take your time.

                      Hey fuckwit, what he actually said was: “I don’t know the background but if anyone is going to level an accusation of hypocrisy then it needs back-up.”

                      Yes.

                      As Rich said in the part of the comment you failed to quote for some reason:”Yes if it’s true. But it’s just opinion in both cases.” [my italics]

                      You started calling people hypocrites without backup.
                      And then got upset when others did exactly the same thing.
                      You’re a hypocrite.

                      You misquoted cousteau.
                      You’re a liar.

                      You keep expecting people to not notice such obvious hypocrisy and lies.
                      You’re a fool.

                    • UglyTruth

                      Where do the links in my comment go?

                      It’s not my job to help you make your case against me.

                      You started calling people hypocrites without backup.

                      Liar. What I said was that “I seem to be good at drawing out hypocrites.”

                    • McFlock

                      🙄
                      So you just said that randomly, with no implication?
                      Your playground avoidance of admitting a lie (the textbook case where you attributed to Jacques Cousteau words that he never said) makes that seem unlikely.

                    • UglyTruth

                      So you just said that randomly, with no implication?

                      The implication was that OA could be a hypocrite.

                      Your playground avoidance of admitting a lie (the textbook case where you attributed to Jacques Cousteau words that he never said) makes that seem unlikely.

                      A lie involves intent to deceive. What makes you think that I had such intent?

                      You’re so full of shit McFlock, making accusations that you can’t back up.

                    • McFlock

                      “could be”???
                      You don’t even have the balls to commit to your obvious accusation.

                      But you’re obviously a liar, and apparently that often goes hand in hand with cowardice. But relax, apparently I’m merely implying that you could be as spineless as you are stupid, deceitful, and hypocritical.

                    • TheContrarian

                      McFlock, you realise you are arguing with a person who thinks mini-nukes were used to bring down the WTC right?

                      Nothing can be gained by engaging UT in discussion. He is impervious to logical reasoning.

                    • McFlock

                      lol
                      I honestly can’t tell if WTC mini-nuke is an exagerration or an actual theory ugly’s put forward at one time.

                      yeah, point taken 🙂

                    • TheContrarian

                      He actually believes there were nukes in the WTC basement. For reasons as of yet unexplained.

                    • Rich

                      Well I think the objective seems to be to discredit. It’s a wonder he doesn’t have a sock puppet here to back him up.

                      His website registration lists a telephone number which is an internet cafe in Nelson. Make of that what you want.

                • Rich

                  Well can I just say that if you’re going to call others hypocrites then it’s not a great look to object when somebody calls you one. Because it’s hypocritical.

                  • UglyTruth

                    It’s not hyprocritical unless the original accusation is true. If you want to make the case that I am a hypocrite then please feel free, tricledown hasn’t shown any evidence for it.

                    • Rich

                      Yes if it’s true. But it’s just opinion in both cases.

                      I can see there’s a level of animosity here, I don’t know the background but if anyone is going to level an accusation of hypocrisy then it needs back-up.

            • tricledrown 18.1.1.2.1.2

              behaving like Aron Gilmore gets you sacked!
              So if Aron got sacked for being obnoxious Slater Collins And Key should be prosecuted for abuse of power!

    • Bill 18.2

      Ugly Truth’s got a point though. We engage in a system of governance that enables the Slaters and Keys of the world. Take them out one by one, and we’ll still be taking them out in a 1000 years from now. Modify the system – y’know, like add a rusty bolt to an already broken down pile of shit – and it will inevitably revert back and exhibit/encourage the same stuff it did before the application of said rusty bolt/legislative modification.

      I mean, you might want to argue that Key, Slater et al are an abberation rather than a natural systemic consequence of our current organisational structures. But you’d be left trying to explain away a hell of a huge number of so-called abberations.

      • karol 18.2.1

        Coalition for Better Broadcasting have a very good point about the way Team Slater has been able to thrive.

        When the dust settles on the illegalities, immoralities and indignities exposed in Dirty Politics, what is actually more important is the fact that Slater, Ede, Lusk, Farrar and Collins et al successfully exploited NZ’s mainstream media. They succeeded because our media is weak, under funded, highly competitive and almost entirely commercial. Ratings count, headlines are everything and delivering maximum eyeballs and eardrums to advertising is the ultimate goal. Democracy, public good, integrity, natural justice, ethics, humanity are less important.

        Interestingly, none of Cameron Slater’s favoured journalists worked at Radio NZ, our countries last non-commercial news outlet. All were in the cut-throat world of commercial media. It strongly reinforces the argument that NZ desperately, desperately needs more non-commercial news media – television, regional television, regional radio, online and even print.

        Our current system needs adequate checks and balances. The last few decades, many of the necessary ones have gradually been stripped away

        • ianmac 18.2.1.1

          Good point there karol. Makes me wonder about the source of the anti-Cunliffe stories published on say the Herald. And the way in which a tiny thing like a form letter from 11 years ago was magnified. Wonder if there are a few journalists out there who are reflecting on their vulnerability for being used. Maybe.

          Note also how National Ministers are reluctant to front on National Radio.

        • UglyTruth 18.2.1.2

          Our current system needs adequate checks and balances. The last few decades, many of the necessary ones have gradually been stripped away

          The checks and balances of the current system are illusory. The separation of powers between the judicial, the executive, and the legislative branches do not exist at the core level of allegiance, the executive and legislative branches are comprised of the same people, and the judicial branch defers to the legislative branch.

          Both the judicial and the legislative branches are based on the adversarial system: the “winner” is determined not by merit but by who is able to play the game most effectively. I’d really like to be able to say that there is a way of fixing the current system, but the corruption runs so deep in the traditions of the civil institutions that I’m convinced that the only way to obtain a legitimate democracy in this country is no discard the civil process in favour of due process of law.

      • McFlock 18.2.2

        There will never be a perfect system of governance because people will never be perfect.

        So what we have to do is either keep replacing faulty mechanisms in the system with something better engineered (but that will still, eventually, rust), or create a new machine that we can be reasonably sure(not absolutely, just a reasonable expectation for success when the penalty for failure is taken into account) will work better than the current model, and ensure that the transition from one system to another will not mean that the supposedly better system is standing on a platform of blood.

        Personally, even commenters here I respect (or other intelligent folk I’ve chatted to about such things or read) have not come up with a new system that makes the transition risks worthwhile, in my opinion. “Uglytruth” is not in that group.

        So as far as I can see we’re left with preventative maintenance and over-engineered repairs.

        • Bill 18.2.2.1

          Oh, if you want to settle for fundamentally undemocratic forms of governance (eg, representative democracy), then sure…fiddle, maintain and crisis manage…hobble on through as it were.

          • McFlock 18.2.2.1.1

            I haven’t seen a better option come along.

            One stumbling block is that it’s not just about giving everybody equal power, it also requires ensuring that different people with different strengths, skills and weaknesses can use their power equally without a tiny advantage or disadvantage over somebody else – because over time those advantages and disadvantages will turn into class systems and power blocs.

            It’s not how the system starts out, it’s how it will look in a hundred years.
            Representative democracy, as far as I can see, is the only system that shows promise of improvement before degeneration.

            • Rich 18.2.2.1.1.1

              Yes a 3 or 4% advantage for the owners of the poker machines translates to a tax on the users and a hefty profit for the owners. I’m not sure if you can redress that one without regular redistribution.

            • Bill 18.2.2.1.1.2

              McFlock, of course you haven’t seen a better option…or at least nothing on a scale comparable to what needs to be replaced! Anyway, and not wanting to get into a long drawn out discussion here, maybe you’d care to contemplate how practicing market economics inherently confers advantage and disadvantage and how it is that (the economy), rather than any political arrangements that creates class. And sure, I acknowledge that hierarchical political arrangements create privilege. But that’s easily dealt with if what your seeking is democracy. (hint : ‘permanent’ hierarchical structures would be viewed as illegitimate and thus ignored as people got on with the business of being democratically organised)

              • McFlock

                I meant that nobody has even presented the theory of a system than:

                a representative democracy with government provision of essential and naturally-monopolistic infrastructure and services, alongside an extensive social security net provided for via a multi-level progressive income taxation system – probably alongside additional taxes on wealth and financial transactions.

                • Bill

                  Yes they have. There are many of them. One of the more comprehensive presentations is parecon – a proposal for a participatory economy alongside or in conjunction with a participatory polity. It’s a lot of web pages and online books, but here’s the link if you’ve an interest.

                  http://zcomm.org/category/topic/parecon/

                  • McFlock

                    I’ll have a bit of a read. At first blush it doesn’t seem to be particularly realistic, though.

                  • McFlock

                    it seems very committee-centric, which tends to favour people good at that shit.

                    It doesn’t seem to be all that different from some other things I’ve heard – lots of objective, but it won’t go anywhere. Shit, they already went to a hierarchical committee of the chosen (ICC). That precedent of compromising principle for efficiency will fuck it if they get into a position to substitute for the old system (a Ferguson Commune, maybe, a la Paris?). Lot’s of straw-men and handwaving in Albert’s comments, too. Makes me itch.

                    Maybe I’m just too damned cynical about people. I dunno. I live in hope, though 🙂

                    • Rich

                      Yes I’ve been wondering of late if a Dictatorship of the Proletariat was a Dictatorship over the Proletariat.

                      People are capable of building something better but it’s not going to come out of the elite universities of NE US.

                    • McFlock

                      To be fair, ISTR Marx expected a number of revolutions to fail to progress past the DotP before the final communist outcome.

                      Because I don’t believe in any final outcome (other than eventual extinction), it seems to me to be more of a political boom and bust cycle of utopia to dictatorship and back. Which makes me more biased towards methods of smoothing that cycle, rather than hoping for its elimination.

                      Although I’m not sure I thought it through thatfar, so I guess I learned something about myself tonight 🙂

                    • Bill

                      You won’t find any argument from me over how they’ve fucked up their ‘community’ web presence…or the whole ICC bullshit.

                      However, the basic analysis of motivations within a market scenario; the effects that has on behaviour and the alternative proposals for democratic decisions determining production and distribution appear sound imo…until it devolves into a strange kind of syndicalism in an attempt to ‘contain’ everything….which always raises the specter of centralism in my mind. (That doesn’t apply the same to the frameworks and proposals for non-economic decision making though)

                      Anyway, Albert is a bit bloody insufferable 😉

                    • Bill

                      @ Rich, the whole ‘Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ was a fucked up notion from the get go which was always going to preserve privilege and allow bases of unaccountable power to form. (The Party)

  19. North 19

    Foppish sophistry from UglyNoTruth. Go ahead Ugly – blame your slave for the idiocy of believing you are kind. As you chuckle at the measure of your unkindness.

    • Rich 19.1

      What exactly is foppish? What’s the context?

      And please explain what uglytruth said that you disagree with. He or she made several points, some of which I would agree, some of which I don’t know if I agree and one (I don’t mind scapegoating those three) that I would disagree with.

      • McFlock 19.1.1

        get a dictionary re:foppish.

        At a quick glance:

        • the natural world has never involved accountability
        • some misuses of power are legal, because law comes from social structures. It does not exist independently of society’s power structures
        • I neither know nor do I care to know what UT meant when they wrote that the “rule of law”

          confronts the UN doctrine that the will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government

          Probably just pretentious bullshit.

        • calling offenders “scapegoats” minimises their role in the offence
        • transitioning from “our failure as a society” to “our own role in enabling the system” confuses collective failure with the power we as individuals had to stop it. But it sounds nice even if it is bullshit.

        I’m surprised UT didn’t pronounce that Key should be brought before the Court of the Hundred, but whatever. All talkie, no do-ie.

        • Rich 19.1.1.1

          I figured it would be easy to look up foppish but then I still might get the wrong meaning. But it’s not a biggie. I’ll take the wikipedia meaning, someone more concerned with their appearance than their substance.

          I wasn’t sure about the UN bit before either. A second look at the post does seem to indicate an elite opinion rather than a democratic one, the rule of the mob, the denigration of the UN and the explicit approval of elite rule. I’m a little surprised that such an elite opinion would exist here at the branch office, you’d think that it was a head office sort of thing.

          I’m one of the mob. Looks like I’ll have to oil the guillotine.

          • McFlock 19.1.1.1.1

            To be fair, Ugly was starting out slow.

            Wait until UT gets started on a revolution based on common law and the UN plot to reduce the global human population by 350,000 per day.

          • UglyTruth 19.1.1.1.2

            I’m one of the mob. Looks like I’ll have to oil the guillotine.

            That sounds kind of harsh, it’s not from the true democracy that I was talking about:

            “The safety of the people is the supreme law.”
            Bacon’s Max. in Reg. 12; Broom’s Max. 1.

            • Rich 19.1.1.1.2.1

              I assume that’s Francis Bacon. I’m not a big fan of late Medieval British history, but if I was going to pick out a period there it wouldn’t be while the Star Chamber still had an active role in the society. You will note I guess (or not, you do seem to think that you are wise and no-one else is) that shortly after Cromwell rose. This wasn’t in a vacuum.

              I preferred the French addressing of the lack of democatic representation minus Robespierre (in part) and Napoleon (in full) and with a more full representation of interests (because the peasantry and artisans were missing from that one).

      • North 19.1.2

        Ugly betrays foppishness with his/her vain, indulgent preoccupation with elegant words. Spun together so as to deceive – sophistry. The deception – Key’s, Collins’, Slater’s assaults on democracy pale against our collective failure to prevent them from behaving in that way. To awake from our slumbers and hold them to account. viz. to answer our collective failure by now holding them to account, is in Ugly’s Mind scapegoating them. We are wrong because we didn’t and now we’re wrong when we do ???

        Get it Rich ?

        • Rich 19.1.2.1

          In the process, North. He/she seems to have taken on some views that don’t necessarily accord with their own interests, judging by the responses this morning.

          • UglyTruth 19.1.2.1.1

            One Anonymous Whatever and I have a history of animosity. How many from his pack of dogs didn’t misrepresent my position and had an actual point to make?

        • UglyTruth 19.1.2.2

          Ugly betrays foppishness with his/her vain, indulgent preoccupation with elegant words

          How do you distinguish concise and unambiguous language from indulgent and flamboyant language, North?

    • UglyTruth 19.2

      “Foppish sophistry from UglyNoTruth.”

      In what way was what I said superficial or deceptive?

      blame your slave for the idiocy of believing you are kind.

      Who do you think my slave is?

  20. greywarbler 20

    I think this quote I am reading is appropriate.

    Man is the only animal that laughs and weeps,
    for he is the only animal that is struck with the difference
    between what things are, and what they ought to be.
    William Hazlitt 1778-1830

    And going further – are we truly the only animal which does these things?

  21. Mark 21

    Thanks Bryan.

    I’m visiting this blog for the first time today out of curiosity. To be honest the only piece I’ve read so far is yours.

    I don’t know much about you but I presume you are part of the Labour youth movement given your naivety and general lack of common sense. Yes, I am a National supporter, always have been and probably always will be but for now the allegiances you and I have don’t really matter. You see I’m here to help you.

    The reason Labour polls so poorly and risks falling completely off the political landscape is that it can no longer articulate to most New Zealanders what it stands for, who it represents and what its vision is for the future. Polls pre ‘Dirty Politics’ prove my point.

    Predictably, given we are only a few weeks out from polling day, you now engage in the very tactics you purport to despise. Let’s be honest it’s your only hope.

    I hate to be the one to tell you and your readers but come September 21 it’ll be back to the drawing board. At that point I strongly urge you to begin with the following. Find a leader that connects with the people in a world where personality is everything and nothing else matters. Even the Heralds latest leaders polls tonight has Key at an approval rating that’s almost embarrassingly good given the week he’s had.

    Bryan, hope that helps. You carry on though with your message because it may be a little late to change tact now. I believe in you. You’ll make a fine commentator, one day.

    Mark

    [lprent: Perhaps you should google Bryan Gould. Afterwards I’d suggest that you change your handle to “young idiot”. ]

    • Mike the Savage One 21.1

      Mark –

      Re your comment: “The reason Labour polls so poorly and risks falling completely off the political landscape is that it can no longer articulate to most New Zealanders what it stands for, who it represents and what its vision is for the future. Polls pre ‘Dirty Politics’ prove my point.”

      Perhaps the wider public do not even comprehend anymore what really matters, for the future of this country, given the endless years that the media has stopped in depth reporting, investigative journalism and thus informing people on matters of substance and relevance?

      When people do not even learn to think comprehensively anymore, and simply get taught to just receive messages, and instantly react on them, without analysis, without assessing information for worth and quality, you will get what we have, which also seems to be all that you are familiar with.

      Key and his government have “sold” voters a mirage, a superficial, theatrical set of policies and government, which is all “gloss” on the surface, with little contents. It is like so many advertising and corporate mission brochures and pamphlets, and full of aspirational talk, and lots of gaps in between, like Swiss cheese messages (full of holes).

      An economy riding on cows and milk filled udders, delivering milk powder and baby formula, based on raw logs and raw fish to China, and rebuilding a disaster zone in Christchurch is a recipe for disaster. And we have people feeling “rich” or “credit worthy” only due to inflated house values, so they borrow and spend a bit more than usual.

      Bryan looks and sees deeper than most, hence his post, which you do not even understand.

      It is time people spend some time on their own, and think about the future, and not fall for some smiling assassin wannabe entertainer, who is quietly selling the last bits of silver there is in the drawer. Turn off the dumbing-down TV and radio, look up some informative websites and blogs, and let your rested brain cells do some work for a change, you may be surprised what comes out of it.

      As for the polls, they have proved to change swiftly at times, and they are not as reliable as you think.

      • Mark 21.1.1

        Well written and I agree with a lot of what you say.

        I certainly am not on board with a lot of what National has in mind for us but come on ask yourself this. What evidence do you have that Labour will do any better? Go on, find a nice quiet corner to reflect on that for a while. Lets not gloss over their last governance either. Was it really any different to what we have now. I’m petrified at the thought of a cobbled together bunch of, well lets face it who knows, and that’s my point.

        I liked a lot of what you said but I’m just not in any way convinced. Sorry.

        • tricledrown 21.1.1.1

          Mark my words me thinks you protest to much!
          They couldn’t be any worse than key and his conniving Crooks

        • tricledrown 21.1.1.2

          Mark You must be plan b wear down the opposition not working go back to handlers

        • Mike the Savage One 21.1.1.3

          “I’m petrified at the thought of a cobbled together bunch of, well lets face it who knows, and that’s my point.”

          I will visit your “petrified” statue in the desert, come the new government will have been formed and put to task to do a lot of overdue reforms and corrections in the first 100 days. It will not be a hard task to “cobble” together what belongs together, and I would not be surprised if Labour and Greens will get enough votes to not need further small support parties. Even if they may need NZ First to support them, what is different or “worse” compared to a Nat-ACT-United-Maori alignment, possibly with the Conservatives with a “doubtful moon-lander” and chem trail chaser as well, to form a government?

          Let us wait until the votes are cast and counted, and then we will see what the future will be for the coming three years.

        • McFlock 21.1.1.4

          you want evidence? Compare policies.
          National have a cycleway. Shit, that was supposed to provide thousands of jobs 6 years ago.

          No new ideas.

          Labour/greens/mana – even NZ1 has a more coherent plan than national have.
          Oh, and then there’s the epsom deal. pffft

        • lprent 21.1.1.5

          I’m petrified at the thought of a cobbled together bunch of, well lets face it who knows, and that’s my point.

          Jez, how does it feel to have been petrified for the last 6 years. The possum who agrees with everything in exchange for a salary, the party of raving backbiting nutters, and a party that has strayed so far from their hikoi roots that they are likely to lose all their seats this election.

          Welcome to coalition politics. If you don’t like it, then please leave.

          I’d add that the only real difference between MMP and FPP is that the coalitions are far more visible.

        • greywarbler 21.1.1.6

          Don’t be sorry Mark. The National Party have so much to be sorry for that you can’t possibly make a dent in their pile of mishaps from the Party of misanthropes.

          Labour makes an effort to stay in the human race, National has taken side bets on the race with the intention of getting a losing result, using tips from those closest to the game and their chief, The Derivatives King.

          And for all you Standardistas this Mark has written his pieces very tongue in cheek . Quite a high standard of faux comment done in naive style. I would rate it 8 out of 10.
          edited

    • North 21.2

      Well Mark, you really do need to find out who Bryan Gould is…….before your well meant (Tui’s) pomposity chokes you.

      From you to Bryan – “You’ll make a fine commentator, one day.” Lordy lordy lordy. Laugh out loud !

    • Chooky 21.3

      @ Mark re your comment on Bryan Gould…You said: “I don’t know much about you but I presume you are part of the Labour youth movement given your naivety and general lack of common sense.”

      lol….For your information on Bryan Gould…..here is a basic wiki link to help you ( hint: you click on it)

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bryan_Gould

      I can only presume Mark that you are one of the very few young ( uncool) youth supporters of John Key and his NACT Party… or you are very naive and unaware of politics and New Zealand history in general …suggest you get yourself educated

      • Lanthanide 21.3.1

        Quite possibly the biggest burn I’ve ever seen on this site.

        • North 21.3.1.1

          It’s hilarious. Wee self-acknowledged know nothing Mark will have been running round trying to find a way to have his comment addressed to Bryan Gould – “you’ll make a good commentator, ONE day…” deleted, quick as. Surely this can’t be a true reflection of YoungNatDom ?

    • John Monro 21.4

      Hello there, National supporter. I am sure Bryan would have had a good chuckle as being described as part of Labour’s youth movement!! As I have gotten older, my politics have leaned ever more leftward, unlike the vast majority of my peers. This is because, as I’ve aged, I have become wiser and have gained a much better ability to see and hear cant and humbug and dissimulation and to smell the unmistakable whiff of corruption. I have to tell you this, for the last few years, I have developed an antipathy to John Key that is almost visceral. I loathe the man and his politics like I’ve never loathed any politician before. And that’s because, unlike the main part of our citizenry, and certainly the main part of the MSM in New Zealand, I am sure that I can see right through him. He is not, and never has been, despite working so hard to achieve this, what he superficially appears.

      For the first time, thanks to Nicky Hager, we’ve been given a treasure trove of documented evidence as to the nature and workings of John Key’s government that for once a supine MSM cannot cooperate with Mr Key in batting away, in the nonchalant way he’s trained himself to do. But really you know, it just confirms what we already knew. So many times, John Key has been caught out lying or being less than open and yet he’s cleverly evaded responsibility. (I have no doubt about his intelligence and quickness, but his intelligence is arch and conniving)

      I am overjoyed that this revelation about Mr Key and the workings of his government, and indeed the workings of corrupt corporations and their interests, has come before the election. It was nearly too late.

  22. lilman 22

    WHERES THE POSITIVE VOTE?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 22.1

      Deserting the National Party?

    • Mike the Savage One 22.2

      “Vote positive” is intended to be aimed at a more positive future, I guess. So in order to get rid of the dirty politics and the mess we have, many here will vote positive on 20 September, for some it may mean voting Greens for the party vote, and perhaps a Labour electorate candidate. Others will vote Labour or other parties.

      So there will be lots of “positive” votes for a change, which only firm Nat supporters will view as being “negative”. Perhaps this will explain it.

    • Rich 22.3

      Positive for who?

  23. lilman 23

    Why are you so negative on this site?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 23.1

      Negative? Our long-held opinion of Dear Leader is being thoroughly and comprehensively vindicated, and the Left is going to win the election.

      We’re all good. You?

    • tricledrown 23.2

      why are you crying in your beer littleman you are an imposter profiling your fake reverse spin to easay mr greasy to much WO in your spin

  24. disturbed 24

    Key is a master of switching the focus of the subject.

    Two days ago we had so much shock from emails sent from Whaledump that connected a lot of very close National top echelons to the leaking of the Labour files to Cameron Slater.

    Then today a letter appeared to seemed to connect Key to briefing of SIS information request.

    After reading this string it is almost like a funeral parade.

    Pick it up troops the fight goes on, as there is much to go forward with, as no one knows what is going on turn up next and this is a slow train wreck not a boom event yet.

    We are supremely confident that there is a smoking gun out there.

    The Dirty tricks campaign the National team have been involved in for six years now have made a lot of enemies as you can’t steep on folks without leaving some wounds, and someone will come forward to make the mud stick always has always will.

    Who wants to see dirty politics continue?

    • Rich 24.1

      I’d like to see a little more aggression in the 4th Estate, they could have taken him to the cleaners today when he said that his office often gets calls about the status of OIA requests at the SIS. This was a tacit acknowledgement that Slater got his info about this one directly from Key’s office. And John Campbell probably scares Key as much as a chihuahua does me, ridiculous to tell Key that he was widely respected amongst the voters especially in Christchurch.

      • Hanswurst 24.1.1

        I’d like to see a little more aggression in the 4th Estate, they could have taken him to the cleaners today when he said that his office often gets calls about the status of OIA requests at the SIS. This was a tacit acknowledgement that Slater got his info about this one directly from Key’s office.

        Indeed. So far, everybody has agreed that the information could only have come from The PM’s office or the SIS. If Key says that it didn’t “necessarily” come from his office, then he is effectively implicating the SIS. If he does not want to implicate the SIS, and can come up with no other possible source, then he has no choice but to investigate the possibility that it came from his office, and attempt to ascertain from whom. His “maybe, maybe not” routine doesn’t cut it. He is simply abnegating his responsibility in the interests of political expediency.

        Also, given that the videos presented on the news are always edited snippets, why do those editing always see fit to include Key’s spin-lines that it is a “left-wing smear campaign” and that “New Zealanders will see” that? It is a line that he has repeated ad nauseam without a scrap of evidence, and it adds no information whatsoever. The media have polls and the opportunity to ask “New Zealanders” on the street what they think. They also have the possibility of asking spokespeople for left-wing parties about any involvement if there is interest or evidence. They don’t need the PM’s personal views on that. If they’re interested in completeness, media companies can (and do) put the full interviews and press Q + A online. For any bulletins, though, the PM’s lines about left-wing smears and what he thinks the public will think are neither relevant nor informative and should be the first dross to land on the cutting-room floor, otherwise they’re just providing him with a free forum to mount a little smear campaign of his own.

  25. Heck Funk Joy 25

    John, is this your song:

    I reflect on my reflection
    and I ask myself the question
    What’s the right direction to go
    I don’t know.
    Am I a man or am I a muppet?
    (Am I a muppet?)
    If I’m a muppet then I’m a very manly muppet.
    (a very manly muppet)
    Am I a muppet (muppet) or am I a man? (Am I a man?)
    If I’m a man that makes me a muppet of a man.
    (a muppet of a man)
    I look into these eyes
    and I don’t recognize
    The one I see inside.
    It’s time for me to decide:
    Am I a man or am I a muppet?
    (Am I a muppet?)
    If I’m a muppet, well I’m a very manly muppet.
    (a very manly muppet)
    Am I a muppet (muppet) or am I a man? (Am I a man?)
    If I’m a man that makes me a muppet of a man.
    (a muppet of a man)
    Here I go again
    I’m always running out of time
    I think I’ve made up my mind
    Now I understand, who I am:
    I’m a Man!
    I’m a Muppet!
    I’m a muppet of a man,
    I’m a very manly muppet!
    I’m a Muppety Man!
    That’s who I am.

    • greywarbler 25.1

      @ Heck Funk Joy
      Perfect little pause in reading the list of indefensibles from Donkey. The muppets are endearing but a fresh look at us.

  26. Stuart Munro 26

    If I reflect upon Key’s extravagant denials for any great length of time, I find that I care less and less for his technical defence and more for the irresponsibility of his stance. His office as PM and his department as minister have behaved improperly. An honest man would be at pains to discover why, if he did not already know. The denials are adolescent, unconvincing, and ultimately futile.

    This pitifully morally inadequate specimen should be impeached – and since we presently lack the legal apparatus for that, perhaps we must dun the GG to remove him from office. That, or pikes.

  27. John Monro 27

    It was always something of a regret to me, Bryan, that you weren’t able to contribute directly to NZ’s political life after your return from the UK. You combine intelligence, wisdom and ethics and a political perspective that is very much what I would like to have seen, and they would have been an inestimable contributor to the Labour party and our government and our society. Much of the neoliberal dogma that has been so destructively foisted on this nation, both by National and by Labour (unforgivably so in the latter’s case) might have been avoided. We’d now how have much happier, healthier and prosperous nation. Thank you though for this wise contribution.

  28. greywarbler 28

    One way of describing our problem with bad government behaviour is to say
    ‘You remember the huge cost, which is ongoing, of leaky houses. Now the problem is as large as all of NZ – there is a leaky House of Parliament and it will have toxic side effects just like the leaky buildings.’
    This is no sweep-it-under- the-rug stuff, this is vital, it’s happening now, in reality, not in some political serial on TV. Think, act, speak, vote, and offer a lift to the booths for anyone you know.

  29. kieron 29

    isn’t the easiest option just to get all of us disgruntled and dissillusioned voters together and to march into parliament, chuck all the politicians out and start again?

    just a thought…

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  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
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  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
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  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
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  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
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  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
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  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
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  • State of National Emergency extended
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  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
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  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
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  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
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  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
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  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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    7 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
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  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
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  • COVID-19 updates
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  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
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  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
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  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
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  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
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  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
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  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
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  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
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  • Government working to keep air freight moving
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