Key hides from real questions

Written By: - Date published: 1:00 pm, November 4th, 2010 - 55 comments
Categories: interview, john key, Media - Tags:

How come John Key called Paul Henry’s racist comments completely unacceptable and Henry was forced to resign but Maurice Williamson’s racism is defended as ‘humour’ by Key and no punishment results? A question you might like to put to the PM. Well, if you try to ask it on Newstalk ZB they’ll let the PM’s staff censor you.

That’s what happened to William Findlay when he called in to Key’s weekly cuddle interview on Newstalk ZB:

Mr Findlay wanted to challenge the “inconsistency” between Mr Key’s criticism of TVNZ host Paul Henry’s lampooning of Governor-General Sir Anand Satyanand and his response to Muslim jokes made at a building industry dinner by Mr Williamson.

Mr Findlay said that several minutes after the producer cleared him to go on air, the woman from Mr Key’s office came on the line and said the issue was being discussed with the Muslim community, and he could not speak to Mr Key.

“I said, `So I’m not going to get to ask the question?’ and she said, `No, that’s all we have to say.”‘

The producer then came back on the line and said there was “nothing she could do”.

Newstalk ZB’s general manager of talk programming, Dallas Gurney, said: “It’s not common practice for the PM’s staff to speak to callers. However, in this instance, there was a genuine belief by the producer that they were helping to answer a listener’s question … I can give an assurance that the prime minister takes all calls on a wide range of issues.”

Yeah, he answers questions ranging all the way from what it’s like to play with spiders to what it’s like to play the clown on David Letterman. But he refuses to answer real questions.

It’s bad enough that Key won’t appear on Morning Report, the country’s premier interview programme. Now even the soft interviews he takes are being censored by his staff. It’s simply not acceptable.

The only people we can turn to are the media put those questions to Key. Those journos that Key will still talk to need to stand up for the public’s rights.

And we need to stand up. Everywhere Key goes, he needs to be told, loudly, that Kiwis are unhappy with him – as most recently happened in Mana on Tuesday.

55 comments on “Key hides from real questions”

  1. Steve 1

    It says a lot for the standard of our journalists that none seem capable of putting the PM on the spot to address why he won’t turn up. However as he is the only asset the government has the chances of him speaking off the cuff and damaging the party ratings in the polls are so slim. Those whose invoices the govt are paying are keen to protect that asset so that the tax payers dollars keep flowing (across the Tasman to Crosby/Textor no doubt!). They will protect at any cost this little treasure and not let him get in front of any media where he can be exposed for the shallow fellow that he is.

    Who can replace him? English? – been there and failed. Brownlee? – Heaven protect us. So don’t expect him to turn up on any news/current affairs programme any time before Dec 2011.

    Someone could try shameing him into appearing but he just doesn’t seem to care.

    And again I say, if the PM couldn’t stand up and be counted on to protect the good name of the Govenor-General during the now infamous interview with Henry, what hope is there for him being there to protect the rest of us…unless we’re Hobbits or a film industry knight.

  2. Sweetd 2

    “….. the country’s premier interview programme. ”

    By what measure?

    • Lazy Susan 2.1

      What’s your nomination sweet’d?

      • Bright Red 2.1.1

        What Now?

      • Sweetd 2.1.2

        Lazy Susan, I wouldn’t call any of our media’s offerings the “country’s premier interview programme.” Most of the time I would describe them as barley adequate. We are very let down in this country for any decent interviewers.

        • Colonial Viper 2.1.2.1

          Ah well I guess we’re going to have to resort to interview show relativism then.

          Crosby Textor is desperate not to have Key overexposed as a brand before the next elections, so I suspect its time to force him to front up every day, day after day.

        • felix 2.1.2.2

          I pretty much agree with you Sweetd, but even Supertramp have a best album and in that sense Morning Report could certainly be described as NZ’s best interview programme.

          • Sweetd 2.1.2.2.1

            A lot of things could be described as ‘best of’ when there is no effective measure. This is all very subjective.

            • felix 2.1.2.2.1.1

              First you said the overall standard is very low. Now you’re saying there’s no way to measure that standard.

              You can’t have it both ways. If there is no effective measure then you can’t claim a low standard. If there is an overall low standard then the quality is measurable and by definition some things are better than others.

              But back to the point you’re trying to distract from: Why is John Key so scared of Radio NZ?

  3. Fisiani 3

    duh
    Ya really wanna know the diff. No just lamely trying to take a dig.
    Paul Henry was serious in a national news programme.
    Maurice Williamson was attempting humour at a builders conference. It got a laugh from the intended audience. But how dare a politician make fun of people.
    No one can make you feel offended without your consent.

    • felix 3.1

      No one can make you feel offended without your consent.

      Could you explain what this rather interesting statement means please Fizzy?

      • Fisiani 3.1.1

        Can you politely use my real name?

        • r0b 3.1.1.1

          Does Felix’s adaptation of your name offend you?

          • Fisiani 3.1.1.1.1

            I choose not to be offended. I simply and politely request courtesy if he expects a reply.

            • felix 3.1.1.1.1.1

              lol Ok Fisiani no offense intended.

              So what did you mean by the very interesting statement that “No one can make you feel offended without your consent.”?

              • Fisiani

                Same as the often quoted no one can make you feel inferior without your consent ( Eleanor Roosevelt)

                • felix

                  Fisiani,

                  I’m familiar with the Roosevelt quote. Yours can’t possibly have the same meaning, as “taking offense” and “feeling inferior” are obviously distinctly different concepts.

                  So please, can you explain in plain straightforward language what you meant?

                  • Fisiani

                    Obviously is a word used when the statement is really not obvious but merely an attempt to discredit a contrary opinion by claiming universal authority.

                    • felix

                      It’s also a word used when something is obvious.

                      Am I to take your reply to mean that you believe that “taking offense” and “feeling inferior” are the same thing?

                      If not then you still haven’t answered my original question.

                      If you have no intention of answering it, please say so and save us all some time.

                      Otherwise I think it’s time for a straight answer.

                    • Mac1

                      Fisiani, obviously you are a “universal authority” because you never ever give another authority for unsubstantiated assertions, even when asked sweetly.

                      spam word “not”

              • Mac1

                Victim guilt. If I’m offended by something, it’s my fault. Just like being poor is my fault.

                • Fisiani

                  Being offended is of course a choice. Are you seriously denying this? Why do you introduce blame? My words are inspriring not denigrating. Are you saying that someone can put thoughts in your mind? Next you’ll be claiming that someone HAD no choice but to punch his partner because she was nagging. Try arguing that in court. My comments are supportive of victims. You’l find Mac1 that your logic is not.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Being offended is of course a choice.

                    But of course you could be wrong. Visceral emotions are not conscious choices.

                    Next you’ll be claiming that someone HAD no choice but to punch his partner because she was nagging.

                    Ah, now you’ve shifted the goal posts. What one does after being offended, e.g. to chill out, write a complaint or to become a violent criminal ok *THATS* conscious choice.

                  • bbfloyd

                    bit of advice fisii.. old chap… try not to criticize someones logic when your own is demonstrably unstable at best.. using two completely different paradigms and calling them alike is doing no more than exposing your feeble grasp of “logic”… if you want an explanation of this “logic” in words of less than four syllables, then i suggest you get practicing on spelling my name correctly.

                  • Mac1

                    Fisiani, the context comes from your 2.57 comment.

                    “Maurice Williamson was attempting humour at a builders conference. It got a laugh from the intended audience. But how dare a politician make fun of people.
                    No one can make you feel offended without your consent.”

                    This seems to be a justification of crassness. The blame of the victim comes from saying that it is a person’s choice to be offended, so if a person feels offended by something like Williamson’s crassness, it is their choice and therefore their fault. The argument concludes by saying it is therefore OK to be offensive, since the victim has a choice to be offended.

                    This is blaming the victim’s feelings for the perpetrator’s offensiveness.

                    In my book, my feelings are not a choice- they just happen. Whether I act on them, or ignore the feelings or ignore the perpetrator of the actions is my choice.

                    The perpetrator however still remains offensive as in Williamson’s case.

                    In your example, the nagger is a nagger and is wrong to be. I have a choice as to how I react, i.e my actions, but my feelings as to how react to being nagged are my own, though not a choice. Feelings give rise to actions.

                    I said nothing about thoughts. You raise straw men arguments based on something I didn’t say.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      The blame of the victim comes from saying that it is a person’s choice to be offended, so if a person feels offended by something like Williamson’s crassness, it is their choice and therefore their fault.

                      Reminds me of Paul Henry’s bullshit apologies.

                      “If I have indeed offended anyone (and I have no idea what I said which might be offensive or why you might be such a delicate wee soul) I am truly (not) sorry”

                • Fisiani

                  To felix . You are obviously wrong. Gettit now?
                  Feeling offended and feeling inferior are both feelings.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Funny, I’ve never met any human being who has conscious control of the way they feel. Because its visceral. The MRI studies prove it.

                    Try again, Fis.

                    • Lanthanide

                      I think Fisiani is under the misapprehension that if you’re offended by something, you must’ve chosen to be offended by it.

                      It is *possible* to choose to be offended by something, because you find it crass and unacceptable – this is sort of like ‘concern trolls’ or people who just want to make a big fuss about something because it provides a convenient smokescreen for their real motive of stirring.

                      But it is also entirely possible (and generally the norm) that you would be offended by something through no conscious choice of your own.

                      Fisiani seems to be aware of the former, but not aware of the more universal latter. Strange.

                    • lprent []

                      A very sociopath profile? Or some other type of unhealthy over controlled personality disorder…

                      He gets close to my troll profile with his inability to back anything he says up – but I tend to view that more as idiotic than anything else.

                      What is puzzling to me is that regardless what happens, he is truly one of the faithful. He ignores all evidence and writes on the fantasies that only he can see.

                      Personally I think he is paid to blog. What we’re seeing is the cutdown personality that is his work profile.

                    • Fisiani

                      So Eleanor Roosevelt was wrong and people have no choice but to feel inferior. MRI proves it.

                  • felix

                    No I don’t get it. Perhaps if you were to explain, in plain language, what exactly you meant by your original statement.

                    It could look something like this:

                    “What I meant was (…) and the reason I believe this to be the case is (…)”

                    Again I ask you; if you don’t intend to give a straight answer, please say so now.

                  • bbfloyd

                    still can’t spell my name yet fiiiiiiisi? have you not got past mindless trash talk yet?

                    at least you provide minor comic relief for the few nanoseconds it takes to dismiss your posts as irrelevant…

              • lprent

                Ummmm…. That almost feels like a bit of a challenge. 30 years of experience winding people up on the net says that it is possible to do it to almost anyone.

                But I have another 10 days of hard yack getting this project out of the door…. It will have to wait.

          • Steve 3.1.1.1.2

            I’m surprised you have to even ask that question R0b, or is it R1b. Show some respect yourself.

  4. Joe Bloggs 4

    it must be a slow news week – hardly worth lighting a match to flame this pathetic effort of Eddie’s

    • freedom 4.1

      go on, you know you want to

      • Tigger 4.1.1

        I’ll flame it! Key’s office has said the broadcaster chooses who goes on air. But here the PM’s office was the gatekeeper. So why did the PM’s office censor this caller when the broadcaster is meant to hold that responsibility?

    • Pascal's bookie 4.2

      Hasn’t dpf posted about it yet blaggs? Dunno what to say mate? ne’ermind.

    • bbfloyd 4.3

      joe.. considering the efforts i’ve seen from you previously, then i suggest you quit while your ahead..

  5. Bored 5

    New theme for Key….

    I’m the invisible man I’m the invisible man
    Incredible how you can see right through me
    I’m the invisible man I’m the invisible man
    It’s criminal how I can see right through you

  6. Irascible 6

    I presume the reason why Key doesn’t front Radio NZ is that it is very difficult to sound informed about substantive issues from the verandah of the Key homestead in Hawaii, the new seat of government for NZ. I gather he feels safer smiling & waving to the camera lens there rather than be seen scuttling from scrutiny in NZ.

  7. Vicky32 7

    Good on Mr Findlay for trying to get answers, but talkback is like that, I had always suspected… WTF is Key doing on talkback? It’s a haven for the terminally angry and bewildered…

  8. tc 8

    Yes Joe Bloggs it’s a slow news week every week when you run the rule our MSM apply to current affairs and what’s considered news….blindtrust/where’s Whanau Ora?/hobbit legislation that muddies the waters and fails to achieve what it set out to/national standards/amount of corrections under urgency to prior legislation passed under urgency etc etc if the MSM had the balls, focus and mandate.

    I noticed campbell also went without sideshow after giving him a touch up in the early days(campbell styled so hardly fierce or damaging) and now he’s back campbell gives him an armchair ride like he always gets on TVNZ…..need ratings must have smile and wave so play to the crosby textor rules.

    It’s not so much hiding but creating a climate where you’ll never get rained on……any chance of that and you will not see sideshow., like RNZ live no editing. Jeez Mickey havoc on BFM had him in knots when he was opposition leader and Beatson wiped the floor with English over GST rises.

  9. randal 9

    simply a question of mind over matter.
    they dont mind and we dont matter.

  10. Tanz 10

    Key’s Facebook page is very tightly controlled also, but I guess that when you’re PM, you have to leave only the glowing comments.

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    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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