Key’s legacy

Written By: - Date published: 10:20 am, February 12th, 2012 - 120 comments
Categories: john key - Tags:

Authors here have been saying for a while that Key may well quit during this second term. Even John Armstrong can see the writing on the wall:

Grim reality has taken its toll on cheerful Key

So it’s goodbye Mr Smile and Wave, and hello Mr Grumpy. Or so the Prime Minister’s critics would have you believe. … However, there have been similar murmurings around the parliamentary Press Gallery and other political traps that something has changed in the persona Key presents to the world and that his demeanour suggests someone now less than enthralled with some aspects of his job.

This is all grist to a lingering suspicion that Key – despite his repeated assurances to the contrary – will not see out the current term as Prime Minister and will bow out some time before the 2014 election. …

If Key is acting differently – and you would be hard pressed to notice much difference – it may be down to two things.

First, his honeymoon with the media finally ended abruptly with the “teapot tape” saga. His trust of the media was badly shaken; the media saw a different, less attractive side of him.

Second, things invariably start to go wrong in a Government’s second term. The year has not got off to a good start. Key and his ministers have had to grapple with the current Treaty wrangle and the Maori Party’s threat to walk out of the governing coalition, yet another frustrating Waitangi Day, the public’s unhappiness with the Crafar farms decision, revision of Budget surplus predictions and the fuss surrounding his electorate chairman’s presence on the board of NZ on Air. …

He may be looking more serious for other reasons. The question haunting him is what kind of legacy he leaves as prime minister. Will historians simply categorise him as someone who was extremely good at managing his Government and winning elections, but whose arch pragmatism produced nothing of lasting substance?

Sorry John, Key has not been “extremely good at managing his Government”, the first term was littered with pratfalls (Richard Worth, Melissa Lee, Bill English, the BMWs, and so on). And he’s so far average at winning elections, with a reduced and razor thin majority in his second term.

So what will his legacy be? As I see it he’s going to leave NZ owning less of its own land and fewer of its assets, more economically divided, with more of its people in poverty, with stuffed primary schools, with its second largest city still in ruins, and with more of its citizens gone to Australia. Nice one.

120 comments on “Key’s legacy”

  1. Jim Nald 1

    His legacy to your children would be jobs in Australia with infrequent visits back to Aotearoa to enjoy the elegant cycleway that continues to fall short of creating 4,000 dynamic jobs. Bless him.

  2. ianmac 2

    After a remarkably long honeymoon the reality of serious concern and care for we his bride, his flaking teflon will expose his cheap plastic interior and his fair-weather mates will scramble to usurp him. RIP.

  3. Carol 3

    And Kiwis are not feeling that good about things right now, allegedly due to a mix of economic and political factors:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/6403955/Rugby-joy-short-lived-nation-pessimistic

    AUT Professor of Sociology Charles Crothers said the nation’s mood was more likely to follow economic rather than political cycles.

    “What we have got is a doubling up of politics and economics at the same time. There may be separate economic and political cycles, but when they co-join it really has a cumulative effect.”

    But political leadership was also a factor.

    “Reaction to leaders has its own cycle. People get a bit fed up with the leader. John Key has that feel-good factor, although he is losing it at the moment.”

    More than half of those questioned (58 per cent) over the past year believe the country is on the right track, down from a 20-year high in 2009 of 65 per cent. Hopes for the economy are especially gloomy as the effects of the Euro-debt crisis and the Canterbury earthquakes hit home.

    After a largely optimistic 2010, only 38 per cent believe the economy will improve, and 42 per cent think it will get worse. Just 35 per cent expect an improved standard of living.

    Curiously this article didn’t last very long on Stuff’s main page.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      More than half the country STILL believes that National has us on the right track. Listen and learn Lefties, the Right understand the psychology of NZ very well.

      • Uturn 3.1.1

        65% approval dropping over 3 years to 58%, with 42% saying they expect things to get worse i.e. further drop in approval. Doesn’t that imply that almost 3/4 of the population are gloomy about the economy and NZ’s direction and think that it is the right track to be on? I would interpret that as saying Labour is lazily ready to take its “turn”… again …and waddle off to the right like the fattened geese they are.

        And that either AUT survey methodology is utter bollocks or NZders are complete drongoes.

      • Fisiani 3.1.2

        There is still on the Loony Left a persisting belief that John Key is flakey and has no plans. Further they believe that NZ is deluded by spin and blindly votes for him.
        They assume that the public will see the error of their ways eventually.
        They plaintively hope that Key will leave office.
        On the other hand with government debt being brought under control, unemployment falling and after tax wages rising there is a general sense of contentment in the land. Add in the impovements that will come from Nationals 120 point economic recovery plan, the help given to young benificieries and the focus on rasing educational standards the you can see why JK remains popular. It is not just that the Right understand the psychology of NZ it is that the Centre-Right Government that we have is Right for NZ.

        Of course no contributors here are loony or deluded…..

        • Kotahi Tane Huna 3.1.2.1

          …and with that, Tinky Winky and the little elves, and all the other magical inhabitants of Randistan scampered off to work!

          Meanwhile, back in New Zealand…

          • Jim Nald 3.1.2.1.1

            I have high hopes that Key will excel with his 120 point blahblah as with his 1 great cycleway project. Bless him.

          • Dv 3.1.2.2.1

            Sounds good, but only 27 points are new policy!

          • lprent 3.1.2.2.2

            It isn’t a plan. That would imply coherence and would be towards objectives. This is simply the traditional National party PR bullet points with no obvious coherence.

            Moreover it is mostly about checklist of routine maintenance on the country – much of it started under Labour. It is also an inaccurate checklist. In the areas I am aware of, things that they are marking as being underway are either in the preplanning or prototyping phases. And when I check the links that is exactly where they show up as being. The only ones that appear to be underway are the ones started and prefunded by Labour.

            But of course that is the nature of infrastructure. Long lead times.

            In fact the only things that I see on the list that are actively underway from National are their collossal screwups like “national standards” in education. A philosophy that is being abandoned in the countries that have alas implemented similar daft programmes.

        • muzza 3.1.2.3

          Summer Heights High Graduate Class, were you Fisiani. Your post a few above this one, is frankly full of garbage, and you have the cheek to call contributers looney and deluded – Was Gosman not available to work (troll) today!

          Drink down that coolade, I’ll have mine after you finish, honest eh 😉

        • Frank Macskasy 3.1.2.4

          Not just the “looney left”, Fisiani,

          “Business NZ sees no economic plan”
          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10763014

          And that’s from that darling of the Left, the NZ Herald. (Recommend you not be eating or drinking when you read that. You don’t want to choke on your Kornies.)

      • mik e 3.1.3

        Thats because their MSM has them brainwashed everyday

    • infused 3.2

      You guys need to look outside of NZ. I don’t think any country -aussie is feeling very positive right now.

      • happynz 3.2.1

        I just got back this morning after spending a week in Melbourne. Here’s what I saw over there –the high Aussie dollar is causing all sorts of problems in the manufacturing sector there. The latest is the big employer Alcoa threatening to make redundant much of the workforce, or indeed, close the plant down. Toyota recently cut loose several hundred workers as well. Doing the rounds of the export education providers I got much of the same story, times are not as rosy as they were. The papers are full of stories of retailers moaning about poor sales. Yet, the cafes are busy, people take expensive lunches in fancy restaurants next to the Yarra River and there are a lot of nice late model cars on the roads.

        Oh, by the way, brilliant public transport in that city. Shits on anything we have here in New Zealand.

        • Colonial Viper 3.2.1.1

          Yep last quarter of last year virtually every big OZ retail chain either missed profit expectations or downgraded future expectations. There is still a lot of money sloshing around, but new permanent contracts with good money are now harder to find – and people are more reluctant to move on from the decent permanent positions they already have.

          A serious recession or financial crisis in China and/or Japan will deal a body blow to Australia. Currently its their iron ore and coal exports which are keeping that economy floating against the headwinds. If China and Japan slow down, coal and iron ore demand will plummet.

          • Rob 3.2.1.1.1

            Now that their stimulous spending is well and truly finished Aussies are waking up to the fact there is a recession in Australia in all industries outside of mining.

            Just like the US, massive levels of Govt spending pissed up against the wall with nothing sustainable to show for it. Key’s legacy will be one of prudence and wise decision making and cleaning up from 9 years of finance industry driven consumerism.

  4. Colonial Viper 4

    English for PM!

    John Key grows weary; he’s got all the money required, he doesn’t have to put up with the shit of being in the public eye. And he doesn’t enjoy leading unpopular policies and national’s policies this year are going to be very unpopular.

  5. vto 5

    don’t forget the cycleway

  6. Luva 6

    It is a wee bit premature assessing someones legacy 2-6 years before they bow out.But then again many on the left had judged Key’s legacy before he took office. I think you have to wait until 5-10 years after someone leaves office before you can objectivley asess the job they did. For example the jury is still well and truly out on whether the last government did a good job with the riches they had gifted to them from kiwis borrowing and spending.

    When the time comes to review Key and his legacy it will be against the backdrop of the worst international economic conditions imaginable. No government in the past 50 years has had to deal with the economic storms and natuaral disasters that this government has. While many other westerm democracies have seen unemployment soar into double digits and have seen their public rioting on the streets, New Zealand has had a comparativley low unemployment rate and Key has remained surprisingly popular.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      The thing is that the Key government has not dealt “with the economic storms and natural disasters”. They’re strategy has been to simply borrow at a massive rate to prevent the economy from nose diving (thanks Michael Cullen who created the fiscal backdrop allowing this) and also allowed a lengthy free market stall to happen in Christchurch.

    • Treetop 6.2

      Unemploymenyt in Greece is about 20 %. There has been a waste of 50 billion in the health system in Greece in the last 10 years. Corruption and greed by the 1 % is what has to be sorted.

      Selling 49 % of the energy asset shares in NZ is a good example of greed and how the privileged few rob from the have nots.

      I know what has created the worst international and economic conditions. Greedy bastards who do not pay their fair share of tax, suck as much profit as they can out of an asset and charge unreasonable rates for their goods/services.

      • Colonial Viper 6.2.1

        Corruption and greed by the 1 % is what has to be sorted.

        The top 25% coast in relative comfort. The top 10% are complicit. The top 1% are collaborators. The top 0.1% are the directors.

      • Lanthanide 6.2.2

        Greece apparently has a much larger underground/grey economy than most other western/European nations, so the official unemployment rate greatly exaggerates the true conditions in the country.

  7. illuminatedtiger 7

    That of a miserable failure perhaps?

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      The issue is that having sold the assets, Key will actually have accomplished what he was set to do.

      • illuminatedtiger 7.1.1

        That’s true but in so far as actually protecting the interests of the many versus the few (something I think is at least implicitly implied in the Prime Minister’s role) he has failed. But then there are so many other things he’s pledged to do that have not gone to plan. Reversing the ride of Australian emigration and reducing poverty (anyone remember McGehan close?) for instance.

      • seeker 7.1.2

        Absolutely CV @11.48am .
        I believe that this was Key’s sole agenda on behalf of……….? Oh. and plus the fact that it would have been nice to have ‘PM’ on his CV as well as get his wife to Buck Palace – and a new dress for the occasion (now in mothballs!) .

        He has no real desire to see New Zealand flourish and prosper – just himself and his masters and cronies – but only those cronies who could keep up with his incredible talent for exploitation.

        He is the total opposite of Helen Clark, who completely had the best interests of New Zealand and all her people at heart, and who subsequently provided a healthier environment of trust for our people to flourish in.

        • phillip ure.. 7.1.2.1

          “..He is the total opposite of Helen Clark, who completely had the best interests of New Zealand and all her people at heart, and who subsequently provided a healthier environment of trust for our people to flourish in…”

          um..!..excuse me..!..not if you were a sole-parent/member of the underclass/one of those families who didn’t ‘qualify’..’cos of poverty..for ‘working for (some) families’..

          ..you obviously weren’t one of those who were forced to just stand outside and look in the window..eh..?

          ..as clark resolutely ignored those she/labour was most tasked to care for..

          ..for those people clark/labour did not ‘care for all’..

          ..far from it..

          [email look alike deleted].

  8. Roy 8

    Key will jump ship before the next election because he is too vain to bear the idea of having to concede electoral defeat, and he knows that defeat will happen.

  9. Janice 9

    The charities that get his donated salary will miss him the most I guess. What were they again?

    • felix 9.1

      The Waitemata Trust.

    • Hami Shearlie 9.2

      We never did find out the actual percentage of his salary he claimed to give to charity did we? Anybody know? One percent would be “a percentage” but it wouldn’t exactly solve much would it? Someone must surely know the answer to this mystery – maybe we should ask the people who control his blind trust??

      • Jim Nald 9.2.1

        With a wink and a nudge, he might be suggesting you take, literally, the expression “charity begins at (his own) home” 😉

        Btw, his blind trust is set up to be blind for you, not to himself

      • felix 9.2.2

        He only ever claimed “a good part” which is numerically meaningless.

        And he only ever claimed to give it to “charities and good causes” which is so inclusive as to be functionally meaningless also.

        Weasel words do catch up with people eventually. And he knows it.

        • Lanthanide 9.2.2.1

          He probably thinks spending $6k on a “Greenstone wash” suit made by some NZ clothes designer is a “good cause” ’cause it’s buying New Zild Made, keeping jobs in the country and all that.

          • Colonial Viper 9.2.2.1.1

            Did he spend it or was it on the tax payers’ tab? After all, he was going to an official function as PM NZ.

  10. Tiger Mountain 10

    ShonKey:
    • a classic asset stripper
    • every significant indicator (e.g. employment) worse than when he first took office
    • societal inequality increased
    • export of dividends and profits offshore (foreign account deficit) up
    • presided over the most tightly managed ‘on message’ government this country has ever experienced, most tory mps don’t dare fart without permission from sub commanders Crosby/Textor at HQ.

    But having said all that, Key really just reflects the state of the New Zealand population. Subjectivity and neo lib individualist fall out rules. Was at a rural party on Friday and a whole bunch of people were bleating about Key and National but bar two of them, I know they all voted effing tory. If a few thousand McJobbed and unemployed youngsters had got off their skinny jeaned asses and voted they could have received a $2 an hour pay rise, so go figure.

    Manipulation, wealth transfer upstairs and the three person hand shake are ShonKey’s legacy.

    • mik e 10.1

      jinkskey everything he has promised has turned to custard!
      On yer biKey

      • ropata 10.1.1

        “that nice man” J.honKey destroyed 2 minor political parties (ACT, Maori) and nearly wiped out NZ FIrst.
        “smile and wave” J.honKey demolishes schools and the teaching profession and any other unions that get in the way
        “fiscally responsible” J.honKey gives away bailouts and tax cuts to his wealthy pals and flogs off public assets
        “caring and compassionate” J.honKey did nothing when Chch was plundered & insurance companies didn’t pay out

  11. felix 11

    Credit where it’s due, he did score the winning try in the Rubber Wool Cup.

    • Hami Shearlie 11.1

      Is his trotie kept in his office ?-Maybe it’s in the form of a solid gold piggy bank – with Gerry’s face on the front!!!

  12. Treetop 12

    NZers are turning to gambling due to a lack of faith and frustration in the government. Gambling has increased in Canterbury (partly to escape the economic reality). If Sky City gets there way to build the 350 million convention centre the trade off will be 1,000 pokie machines. Growth industry problem gambling. People are gambling by going to Australia due to the attractiveness of higher wages.

    Eventually being an escapist catches up because the reality of the situation has to be dealt with, FAILURE.

    Key’s legacy for me will be gambling with the four energy companies to escape the massive deficit which will take 10 years to reach a zero balance.

  13. Richard Christie 13

    NAct will be all a fuss trying to figure out which of their number has the mostest in the bank, and so qualify to be their natural leader. No track record in politics required.

  14. marsman 14

    Key would want to leave before the next election to make sure he gets a knighthood pronto, after all Shipley had to wait nine years to have people call her Dame. Yuck!!

  15. vto 15

    Another legacy;

    Someone to look up to in how to be a successful money-changer……
    (tho i do wonder if such a thing is possible)

  16. vto 16

    Another legacy;

    How to be a chickenshit when sitting in front of an offensive racist tv-jerk such as Paul Henry

  17. Blue 17

    He will leave NZ as a debt-laden, asset-poor, deeply unequal and divided nation.

  18. Thomas 18

    I doubt anyone will remember the current asset sales in 10 years. Selling a minority stake in a few energy companies just isn’t a big deal in the long run. For all the current moaning, asset sales will be a footnote by 2014.

    Key hasn’t done much of note so far. His government has been cautious and centrist against a backdrop of local and global doom and gloom. My guess is that he will be remembered for something that isn’t on the radar yet. (Perhaps we will see major constitutional reform coming out of the agreement with the Maori party.)

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      For all the current moaning, asset sales will be a footnote by 2014.

      Yep. And Joe Public will still be wondering why the country is getting poorer and poorer while the wealthy get richer and richer.

  19. hoom 19

    He will leave NZ as a debt-laden, asset-poor

    I got that far thinking you were talking about the state of Key when he leaves but then I clicked 🙁

    And that either AUT survey methodology is utter bollocks or NZders are complete drongoes.

    I follow CVs response (though tend to the latter) but would like to point out the article says its a UMR survey, AUT prof. is just commenting on it.

    Speaking of which Mediawatch this morning had some discussion on the general lack of academic commentators in the modern media.
    Deeply concerning among that was an extraordinarily leading question to the Herald reporter guy, something about whether complaints about lazy journalism were legit or just insulting.
    In the middle of a discussion about how silly it is to have banks sponsoring financial reporting & how most of the reporters are too ignorant to challenge the biased commentary I found that extraordinarily bizzare.

    • Ordinary_Bloke 19.1

      True. In most countries academic research is valued by media commentators, but
      here we find commentators like Jim Mora using ‘academic’ as a derogatory term, or an insult.

      Is it any wonder there is a brain drain ?

  20. Tanz 20

    But he will still have his fortune, his mansion, his fame. What does he care if he does bow out?
    He will leave people wondering what they ever saw in him, the cheerful thing is media hype.
    Key did not get superrich by being either nice nor cheerful, this is a fallacy.
    Bet he is a hard taskmaster and Armstrong is wrong in saying that Key does not love the power, in my view.

  21. Ordinary_Bloke 21

    Geez, you guys are so down on Key that I almost want to defend him ..

    but that’s a problem.

    I would say that the fix is in, already.

    It is probably in his – and National’s – interest to do it sooner than later,
    but don’t hold your breath, Virginia.

  22. eljaydee 22

    John’s legacy to New Zealand will be smaller by 49% than it was when he took control of the family fortune.
    New Zealand’s legacy to John will be power, broadcasting and Banking shares in blind trusts that he swears he has no control over.

  23. james 111 23

    You wish you wish you wish, You hope in vain that John might step down but he wont. He will be there until the end he will put the Nats back in 2013
    Reason the Left attack him so much is they have no one to match him .They know National is powerful with Key there. They have no one in their ranks who can compete with ,no one that is inspirational, has made it in business. Who is motivational who doesnt get jealous over people earning good money for working hard. No the Labour party is full of people who seem depressed much more likely to try and pull people down rather than buil them up.

    • thatguynz 23.1

      “You wish you wish you wish”
      Very much so..


      “You hope in vain that John might step down but he wont. He will be there until the end he will put the Nats back in 2013”
      I very much doubt it.


      “Reason the Left attack him so much is they have no one to match him”
      Bollocks.  I can think of two left MP’s immediately that are more than capable of matching or more likely exceeding Key.
       
      “They know National is powerful with Key there”
      Hahaha, umm ok – just keep taking those pills..


      “has made it in business”
      Now you’re just taking the piss aren’t you James?  I truly suggest you start doing some impartial digging into what exactly your esteemed PM has done in business.  What his roles were and what he achieved..


      “Who is motivational who doesnt get jealous over people earning good money for working hard”
      Oh boy, where to even start with this.  Let’s just go with “see point immediately above” for a start eh..


      “No the Labour party is full of people who seem depressed much more likely to try and pull people down rather than buil them up”
      To start with Left == Labour is old school FPP thinking.  The left is much more than solely Labour.  I’d also suggest you get a better understanding about left-wing politics and what it stands for before you come here and proclaim fundamentally incorrect bullshit like that.  Unsurprisingly it doesn’t do wonders for your credibility…

      • Rob 23.1.1

        So ‘That Guy NZ’ let the secret out, who are these two left MP’s that are more than capable of matching or more likely exceeding Key.

        • thatguynz 23.1.1.1

          Gladly.  At the very least there is Russel Norman and David Cunliffe, not to mention Jacinda Ardern or Gareth Hughes.  All of them have the demonstrated ability to communicate clearly and succinctly, and to debate from a factual basis.  All of which have more than enough personality or charisma to match Key and surpass him by some margin in terms of integrity.  There probably are more however these are the ones that spring to mind immediately.

    • You hope in vain that John might step down but he wont.

      I think it’s 50/50, in my view, James.

      More likely still is that there will be a by-election in a National-held seat – which they will lose.The Maori Party will jump coalition-waka faster than you can say Capitano Schettino. Game over.

      Reason the Left attack him so much is they have no one to match him .

      Fair point. Key is to National what Lange was to Labour. They were both men who had the appearance of being ordinary; one of us. As some political commentatoras have said, “Key de-politicises politics – whilst ramming through the most blatant right-wing political agenda since the early ’90s”.

      It would have been fascinating to see a match between Lange and Key…

      No the Labour party is full of people who seem depressed much more likely to try and pull people down rather than buil them up.

      Disagree. And if many of us are depressed, it’s because of reports like this in the media,

      “Divided Auckland: Overcrowding a hotbed for infections”
      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10784294

      If that isn’t enough to sadden you… well, you’re made of sterner stuff than I, and Key is,an honourable man…

  24. james 111 24

    You wish you wish you wish, You hope in vain that John might step down but he wont. He will be there until the end he will put the Nats back in 2013
    Reason the Left attack him so much is they have no one to match him .They know National is powerful with Key there. They have no one in their ranks who can compete with ,no one that is inspirational, has made it in business. Who is motivational who doesnt get jealous over people earning good money for working hard. No the Labour party is full of people who seem depressed much more likely to try and pull people down rather than build them up.

    • McFlock 24.1

      Tell me james – do you wipe down the keyboard every time you type “John Key”? Or do you just put up with sticky keys?

      • james 111 24.1.1

        Mcflock
        No not all did you feel that way over Chris Carter or Geogina Byer?

        • McFlock 24.1.1.1

          Nope. I was merely pointing out that you get quite poetical when you write about John Key. You obviously have quite the teenage crush on him.
          Almost sweet, really.

        • Frank Macskasy 24.1.1.2

          Never met Chris Carter – so can’t say.

          But I’ve met Georgina Beyer and she’s a nice sort.

    • PJ 24.2

      2013? So, an early election you reckon? That would be an interesting move don’t you think? We’ve got a short election cycle, but that would be pretty extreme, would he have even sold off enough assets by then? Have you got an inside tip James?

    • Ordinary_Bloke 24.3

      “has made it in business” .. ?

      I have met a guy who *triple* mortgaged his family home, where he and his spouse and three children lived, to keep a company afloat which developed and commercialised molecular-level membrane filtration of contaminants from water, eventually selling it to a US water treatment company.

      I have met a guy who developed a locally made computer, the circuit boards installed in a sheltered home for the mentally disabled – who were almost delirious to get a job, which was bought by education departments in two Australian states as well as Sweden and was negotiating with other countries when his company collapsed due to increasing market dominance by Apple and IBM.

      I have a lot of time for these people because they took risks, and did something constructive.

      I am sure that there are many other interesting untold stories out there.

      .. but please spare me the drivel about John Key “making it in business”.

    • i dunno about that..

      ..key to me does not look like one who could take an ongoing eroding of him over tiime..

      ..he really really likes to be liked..

      ..some find that endearing..

      ..and conversely..he really really dislikes being disliked..

      ..and of course he must be thinking of his heritage/how history will view him..

      ..and currently..he looks to be written up as a baddie..

      ..not only ‘cos of his return to the bald old/failed days of asset-selling..

      (esp. energy-companies..we will have many long winters/years to rue that one..as we pay our bills to either overseas-owners..or our own greedy/exploiting 1%..pick yr devil..)

      ..but because he was elected as some kind of financial-wunderkind..

      ..one who would ‘fix’ nz for us…

      ..his instead turning to completing the neo-lib agenda of smashing unions..tranferring public assets to the financial-elites..

      ..and the/a ‘big’ one..(esp. for a supposed financial wunderkid)..the economic-insanity of borrowing $300 million per week..to fund tax cuts..

      ..all of this..and more..will ensure that keys’ legacy/historical-framing will be less as a politician..more as a form of natural disaster..

      ..and one that left us much worse off..

      ..’key-the-wrecker’..

      ..will be the rotting albatross he will have to drag around for the rest of his days..

      ..i think he is smart enough to know this..

      ..and i think he is vain enough for it to be troubling him..

      ..and the pressure on him is only going to increase..as it should..

      ..i think he will crack..quite easily..

      ..but then ..of course..we get prime minister joyce..(shudder..!..)

      [email look alike deleted].

      • Roy 24.4.1

        “..and of course he must be thinking of his heritage/how history will view him..”

        I wonder? I don’t think he thinks very far ahead.

    • millsy 24.5

      Im sorry, but you cannot make me bow and scrape and doff my hat to someone because they have more money than I.

      Especially if they have benefited from tax cuts that were paid for by the mass closure of schools and hospitals and other community assets.

      And just because somone is not rich, doesnt mean that they dont work hard. Cleaners, etc slog their guts out every day, but you seem to begrudge every cent they earn. Seems like you want to cut wages to zero.

  25. Eduardo Kawak 25

    The good ship NZ is listing badly and Key will make like an Italian sea captain – trip and fall into a life raft aka golden parachute, rather than fail in a re-election bid.

    As for surveying the nation’s mood, how about looking at the tens of thousands of kiwis leaving these shores every year? I wonder if any of them even bother to vote. Start doing some exit interviews at the airport.

    I wonder what Key would say in his.

  26. Jenny 26

    So what will Key’s legacy be?

    ANTHONY R0BINS

    John Key’s legacy will be the promotions of a democratically unelectable economic and political extremist to the premiership.

    • muzza 26.1

      “John Key’s legacy will be the promotions of a democratically unelectable economic and political extremist to the premiership.”

      Followed by the PM being Shearer, cut from the batch of cookies, only less of a creep! The joys of the drongo NZ voting public….actually so many of them didn’t vote, perhaps there are less drongoes than first thought!

  27. burt 27

    Keys legacy…

    We stop pretending that all teachers are the same;
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/6406164/Hundreds-of-unfit-teachers-in-class

    • Dv 27.1

      That that is a little more of the 1% of the teaching force!

      • burt 27.1.1

        Then that’s a little more than 1% of the students who will be better served by removing them!

      • Carol 27.1.2

        A lot less than the percentage of unfit ministers and MPs in the House.

        • burt 27.1.2.1

          Carol

          That’s true… absolutely no argument there. The thing is though Carol that we (the voters) are responsible for evaluating and either selecting or rejecting these people so we get what we deserve. The same is not true for teachers. We have no real ability to select either the teachers in a given school or to influence the quality of teachers overall.

          I guess that works for the teachers and their union so we should just shut the F-Up and accept it… after all – MP’s have worse stats so teachers can’t be that bad…..

      • KJT 27.1.3

        With Teachers pay and working conditions it is surprising there are not a lot more who are incompetents who could not get work elsewhere.

        65% of politicians are totally incompetent and not worth what they are paid!!

        1% of Teachers are incompetent. 🙂

        And what about these people. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1235576/How-bankers-destroy-7-1-create-Hospital-cleaners-valuable-society-say-researchers.html

        Every one knows of companies that survive despite management, not because of them.

        It is accepted in private companies that 20% of the people contribute 80% of the work.
        The ratio of workers to drones, in Teaching, is an order of magnitude better.

        We get much better Teachers than we deserve, considering the way we treat them, with unrealistic expectations, low pay and a lack of resources and support.

        • burt 27.1.3.1

          Great, your world view rates MP’s as being of worse quality than teachers… Lucky we get to vote for MP’s every three years!

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 27.2

      How can we stop doing something we were never doing in the first place?

      “This chapter outlines the approach New Zealand uses to appraise teacher performance.”

      So, Mr. Muddle does nothing.

    • mac1 27.3

      The problem with statistics- #1
      The Stuff article burt cites says that there is a 100,000 strong teacher workforce. Another source (www.educationcounts.govt.nz/statistics/) finds there are 52460 teachers in state or state integrated schools. So, problem number one is what are the stats? And how far can they be trusted, let alone the conclusions drawn from them?

  28. mac1 28

    The problem with stats- #2
    I looked at (another problem being I’m not a statistician) burt’s cited Stuff article. 664 complaints over a period from 2009 against teachers, of which 297 were dismissed. 50 were struck off the teachers’ register in the last two years. The Teachers’ Council head Peter Lind quoted a 100,000 total teacher number.

    I then looked at the stats (the Police Annual Report) for the NZ Police which should be as upright an organization as we have in New Zealand.

    There were in total 2052 complaints in 2010-11 (about the annual average). 552 complaints were category 1,2 or 3 which roughly were equivalent to the seriousness of the 664 teacher complaints. Police numbers are 8856 sworn officers.

    Which organization would I be more concerned about? Or, is there something wrong with my stats or those of burt’s Stuff article? Or, is there something in the interpretation of these two sets of figures which escapes me, burt, or the Stuff journalist?

    • burt 28.1

      Oh, right. It’s all too hard – lets just ignore it and hope they all pay their union membership subs cause that’s the most import thing for a teacher.

      FFS: There is almost 1 in 5 kids being failed by our school system. The stats (which we will just right off as too hard anyway) might look good for our school system overall – but that’s the point isn’t it – they mean diddly squat for the 1 in 5 that gets left behind.

      • mac1 28.1.1

        Yes, burt, I thought you were wanting to attack the teaching profession and now that we have some inkling of your real agenda, in order to debate this issue, may I please have your reputable citation for the almost 1 in 5 being failed, please, including what may be the reasons as to why this failure is occurring.

        To what extent is teacher incompetence a factor? To what extent are physical or mental illness, problems of intellectual capacity and functioning, accidents, nutrition, medication, family background and environment, race, gender, age, locality, truancy, police intervention, courts intervention, personality factors in student achievement?

        I note that in a court system that you would be treated almost as a hostile witness given your crack about teachers’ union subs. I acknowledge your stated bias. Mine is that I am a retired teacher for whom ‘paying my union membership subs was the most import (sic) thing.’

        • Dv 28.1.1.1

          Thank you ‘mac,you beat me too it.

        • burt 28.1.1.2

          mac1

          Here are some sobering stats…

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10784238

          The proportion of students leaving school without an NCEA level 2 qualification – the minimum required for a basic apprenticeship – has fallen from an alarming 43 per cent in 2005.

          But in 2010 it was still 26 per cent, including 45 per cent of Maori and 32 per cent of Pacific school leavers.

          And 13 per cent of kids left school without even the basic literacy and numeracy required for NCEA level 1.

          The briefing also notes the recession’s impact in swelling the ranks of young people (15 to 24-year-olds) classified as NEET, that is, not in employment, education or training: 9.7 per cent in the year ended September 2011, up from 7.2 per cent in 2005.

          Again Maori and Pacific people were over-represented among the NEET, with rates of 16.4 and 13.7 per cent respectively.

          So while the school system may be doing a good job by international standards for most kids, there is clearly way too large a minority for which that is not true – a fact that cannot be separated from wider social failure.

          The reason why that failure is occurring… If I could give you a simple answer to that then I would be doing better than anybody else on the subject. The fact that you ask me for that reason implies to me that you just want to fob this debate off… If you are a retired teacher than asking me that question demonstrates your unwillingness to actually engage on this topic.

          • mac1 28.1.1.2.1

            burt, quoting the business columnist’s article is not a reputable source, since he does not divulge his sources, either. It’s just the same as quoting the first citation you gave.

            What could be seen from the Herald article is that you have to resile from your nearly 20% figure that you originally gave at 27. That article said that 13% of students did not achieve level 1 NCEA literacy and numeracy……. if that is the measure of failure. Or, is it now measured by those who pass Level 2? If so, your nearly 20% is an underestimation.

            What we agree as ‘failure’ is important. When I was a school student, the old School Certificate failed some 50%. That was a nonsense, (almost as much as a nonsense as my local MP telling me that we must do something to get rid of the bottom 20%.)

            The reason I ask you for why children fail is that at the moment you seem to want to blame teachers for that. Fair enough, but you, repeat you, have to come up with the reputable evidence to bear up your assertion.

            I cited several reasons which I believe are factors- not what I’d call a fob off. The article you quote actually hints at ‘wider social failure’ as a factor in student failure. I have some handle on what they are. I wanted to know whether you did.

            As for my unwillingness to engage? Well, here I am…….. Why do I sense that I am being deflected again? From your first anti-teacher statements to here you have shifted your ground quite considerably.

            Your attack on me not wanting to engage, however, might prove true if you continue to deflect, change your ground and not give some basis to your assertions. I am a retired teacher, but I do have other and possibly better things to do than argue with someone who has not learned how to debate. Ante up with some facts to back up your attack on teachers as being root cause of school failure, or I write you off as a troll.

        • burt 28.1.1.3

          mac1

          As an aside, I have two kids currently in the school system and I’m married to an x-teacher. I’m not totally uninformed on this subject. Sure I have some views that you may not agree with – but that’s the good thing about blogs – we get to discuss them openly.

          • mac1 28.1.1.3.1

            That’s good, but where does the teacher bashing fit into all this? I am quite ready to be convinced that my teaching career has been a failure, if you can show that to be a fact by citing evidence that school failure is down to teacher incompetence, because then we’d have the answer and be able to supply solutions, wouldn’t we?

            Or, we could see that at best you have been sucked into an anti-teacher stance by a government driven by ideology (national standards) not by evidence; driven by business considerations (charter schools);and driven by politics (the attack on teacher unions, which you seem to have bought into.)

            Now I don’t mind discussing openly. There will be others who can argue my side more cogently and ably. The comment I am responding to here, ‘your aside’, seems to be seeking open debate. But leave off the teacher bashing and give us some reputable and verifiable facts.

            • burt 28.1.1.3.1.1

              It’s not teacher bashing to point out that a percentage of teachers ( deliberately not stating that percentage to avoid being required to justify a number ) are below standard. It’s got nothing to do with your teaching career, nobody said you were a part of that percentage.

              If we take it that I’m not accusing you of being a failure then perhaps we can debate the framework that evaluates teachers without you getting defensive and wanting to be the adjudicator of credible information sources.

              As a retired teacher I’m sure throughout your career there were teachers that you considered excellent and teachers that you considered useless – how did you feel being lumped together into an amorphous group of “the same” given that reality ?

              • Dv

                http://www.teacherscouncil.govt.nz/rt/requirementsforreg.stm

                For a starter Burt, read this about teachers registration requirements (if you havnt already)

              • mac1

                Burt, if you attack me through my profession with an undisguised reference to teachers being mindless unionists, as you did (“hope they all pay their union membership subs cause that’s the most import thing for a teacher”), it ill behoves you to then accuse me of being defensive, matey.

                I want you to be an adjudicator of credible information sources, actually, burt. Then you could show me them, as well as yourself and maybe, every teacher’s fervent hope, get away from your mindless shilling for the National Party (insults are easy, eh?) and start basing your thinking on evidence, thought and discernment as you read these information sources.

                I say that the percentage of teachers who are below a professional standard is very low, based on my forty years experience and that of my wife as well with her similar experience- so low, in fact, but to say that the truly hopeless are weeded out and that you don’t need to worry many more than the 50 over two years who got de-registered.

                The worst time for teacher incompetents was in the seventies when not enough graduates had been trained and we went and hired more of the the Commonwealth’s incompetents- refugees from England’s African colonies and England itself- than was usual. They did not last long at the colleges with which we were connected.

                I am very happy and delighted with the quality of the young teachers coming into the profession that I have seen in the last few years. This why I am not concerned as you are, burt, and why I offer the statistics which say that the New Zealand school system leads by being in the top performers in the world, way better than the performances of countries with ‘national standards’ ands ‘charter’ schools.

                I will supply citations for that when you ante up with what you have dodged giving.

                • burt

                  I thought you were a retired teacher ?

                  • David C

                    burt got well pwned on that one.

                    I weep for my Niece who despite a first rate brain wants to be a primary school teacher. Shheesh. Tho as she says a reasonable pay packet, she cant get fired and lots of holidays to go tramping.

                    [lprent: pwned, owned, and a number of other stupefying tactics are not permitted here. They get classed as flame starters. Read the policy about our attitudes on boring and meaningless flamewars. ]

                    • burt

                      Bollocks, I just didn’t want a homework assignment from some twat who’s forgotten how to talk to other people – It might surprise him to know I’m not a student of his…

                • burt

                  mac1

                  I want you to be an adjudicator of credible information sources, actually, burt. Then you could show me them, as well as yourself and maybe, every teacher’s fervent hope, get away from your mindless shilling for the National Party (insults are easy, eh?) and start basing your thinking on evidence, thought and discernment as you read these information sources.

                  So you didn’t come here for a debate, you came to teach – F off !

                  If you rate my engagement here as a failure – it’s people like you who refuse to engage and prefer to instruct others on how to engage with you that are to blame!

                  • felix

                    How can you engage in any meaningful way if you refuse to look at the evidence provided?

                    Why should anyone take your views seriously when you’re so proud of being so ignorant?

                    • burt

                      Did I miss his answering my questions ? I got him telling me over and over how I should frame them though.

                    • felix

                      burt, you only asked one question and it was about mac’s feelings.

                      mac provided you with two very measured and thoughtful replies and you’ve chosen to ignore both of them and start throwing your toys around instead.

                      Seems pretty obvious who’s not interested in engaging.

                • ianmac

                  mac 1. Good on yer mate. Well said all. But I see no evidence at all (again) that Burt has any intention of discussing anything at all, to back up his assertions.
                  I wonder if some are writing here to just wind others up?
                  Anyway thanks Mac 1 for your wise commentary. 🙂

                  • mac1

                    Thanks ianmac, dv and felix.

                    And thanks, burt. Sorry you have such a view of teachers. We all have our homework to do.

      • And yet, though we can do better, we’re still top seven in the OECD rankings.

        Meanwhile, our American cuzzies – whom we want to emuilate with Charter Schools – are at number 15?!

        Go figure.

  29. dv 29

    Yec Mac, digging into the stats is illuminating.

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