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Once bitten

Written By: - Date published: 10:11 am, February 24th, 2009 - 43 comments
Categories: election funding - Tags:

After his gaffe last time Key’s made a point of openly announcing his next meeting with the Tories’ deputy chairman, strategist and largest donor, Lord Ashcroft.

A company controlled by the billionaire is currently being investigated back in the UK for possible breaches electoral law relating to its political donations.

Key insists that Ashcroft hasn’t given his party any money. I’m still waiting for someone to ask what he has given them.

I don’t believe for a second that Ashcroft comes all this way just to give the National Party an “update on British politics” as they’ve claimed in the past. Where’s a good investigative journalist when you need one?

43 comments on “Once bitten ”

  1. Billy 1

    You mean his “gaffe”. His “gaff’ would be the place where he lives.

  2. all_your_base 3

    Thnks Billy. Givn th currnt economc crisis I’m economsng on vwls as a cost-savng mesur.

  3. higherstandard 4

    Ashcroft is in town visiting his lover

  4. Ianmac 5

    ayb: Saw a long text without any vowels at all. Ths s srprsngl sy to rd dnt y thnk? Dwn wth vwls! Dwn wth spllng! Dwn wth th phncs dbt!

  5. BLiP 6

    Goober John Key has probably invited him over to discuss how best to disappear the Cullen Fund.

  6. Redbaiter 7

    “A company controlled by the billionaire is currently being investigated back in the UK for possible breaches electoral law relating to its political donations”.

    You mean kinda like Owen Glenn??

  7. Daveski 8


    A small thing. Considering this site was insistent the previous PM’s surname didn’t start with a K, likewise I don’t think it unreasonable to drop the Goober line as funny as it was 1000 posts ago.

    Perhaps we could automate this too?

    [lprent: It wasn’t insistent for a reason apart from my economy of effort. I just found that everyone that used it I eventually booted as a troll (along with a number of other signatures). So I abbreviated the process by auto-moderating the words and phrases. That allowed me to isolate probable trolls more efficently with less effort.

    There is a separate class of phrases like ‘Hitler’, ‘Commie’, and others that are indicators of flame wars. Goober doesn’t – but I’m sure that everyone appreciates your efforts.]

  8. Tigger 9

    Who at the NZPA is drinking the Kool Aid?

    “some media reported that Mr Key appeared shifty when asked whether he had met Lord Ashcroft, before admitting he had.”

    “It was one of Mr Key’s few awkward moments in his push to become prime minister.”

    Actually, Key WAS shifty and evasive when asked, it wasn’t just a creation by the media as this implies. And there were more than a few awkward moments.

    National, you can’t rewrite history just yet…

  9. BLiP 10

    Daveski said:

    ” . . .A small thing. Considering this site was insistent the previous PM’s surname didn’t start with a K, likewise I don’t think it unreasonable to drop the Goober line as funny as it was 1000 posts ago. . . .”

    My defence is that John Key is a Goober – its the truth – whereas Aunty Helen’s surname doesn’t start with a K . . . using the K is just being silly.

    I’m hoping Goober will catch on – already its climbing the Google rankings if you search for Goober John Key in New Zealand sites. Perhaps one day it will come up at the number one result when you search just for Goober . . . wouldn’t that be fun?

  10. Felix 11

    th phncs dbt?

  11. Daveski 12

    Careful what you should wish for.

    It would seem to be the same stuff that causes many people here to look down their noses at KB.

    Yes, I can always go back to KB if I don’t like it …

  12. burt 13


    If it turns out that National may have broken the law with regard to funding their 2008 election campaign will you support the introduction of retrospective validations to keep Key out of court and National in govt ?

    If not why not ?

  13. Daveski 14

    LP Noted

    It is at the low end of the scale I must admit but it does grate a little. I’d hate to see things deteriorate to the extent of the comments at KB!

    [lprent: They won’t. Banned two people so far this morning. One for being an advertising troll. The other for abuse. We allow quite a range, but there are limits]

  14. Herbert. 15

    Thankfully everybody has acceptable limits.Once bitten, twice shy.

  15. Matthew Pilott 16

    You mean kinda like Owen Glenn??

    Yeah of course, Redbaiter. Owen Glenn had several of his companies investigated because the donations to NZF came from overseas-registered companies and there are restrictions on how much they can donate to NZ.

    Or it might be nothing like that in the slightest.

    What is the definition of a Goober? I’m sorta with daveski here – it would annoy me if the shoe was on the other foot.

    Burt – wouldn’t the validations to make sure what Parliamentary Service did were legal? I’d support that, if you’re trying to allude to the 2005 election while deliberately distroting what happened.

  16. RedLogix 17

    Kinda have to agree with Daveski here. Mangling people’s names is sometimes funny once or twice, but in general grown-ups avoid it for good reason.

  17. Felix 18

    Ditto to Daveski, MP and RL.

    It’s kiwiblog behaviour and it stopped being funny months ago.

  18. vto 19

    I always enjoyed mangling Peters name. He always reminded me of that complete f..kwit Joh Bjeikle-Peterson, hence Winston Bjeikle-Peterson. It never caught on. But keep trying GOObeR bLIp.

  19. burt 20

    Matthew Pilott

    Don’t confuse the passing of definitions for PS going forward with “validating” misappropriated funds in the past. Labour might have wanted you to think they were one in the same but they were not, and they are not. Definitions for how things should be done when there is a lack of clarity certainly justifies urgent passage through the house, validation of “illegally’ spent money is conventionally processed with the budget. You know that, I know that, Labour just wished we were all too stupid to understand the difference. Don’t make yourself look stupid by falling for the confusion that they tried to surround the 2005/2006 urgent validations with.

    However you have not answered the question I asked of all_your_base, would it be OK for National to kill off a court case and validate the democratic integrity of their govt if the AG decided that they had breached electoral funding laws?

    If not why not ?

  20. Ianmac 21

    Felix: Stop the phonics debate.

  21. @ work 22

    Burt, If National were in the same situation as Labour (that is definitions changed) then I would have no problem, other than that, it would depend on the situation.

  22. BLiP 23

    Dear Precious Little Prats

    Okay, okay, okay – if its really so annoying I shall, in deference to your delicate sensibilities and tearful wailings cease to refer to John Key as Goober John Key. Good grief!

    This willingness on my part to respect the wishes of, and do my bit for this community does not in any way detract from the fact that John Key is now, has always been and will also be a Goober.

    Your humble if reluctant servant

    The BLiP

  23. Felix 24


    Of course he’s a goober, it’s just getting a bit tiresome reading it in every comment you make.

    Still, at least you bold it up like burt does with his little bit of “single non-issue” propaganda.

  24. Chess Player 25

    Thanks for clearing that up, BLiMP.

  25. ak 26

    As an early fan of the Andy Griffiths’ Show, I’d say the handle is flattering if anything….at least the original Goober’s humour was intentional.

    Reporter: “Has anyone from National met Lord Ashcroft?”
    Goober: “I don’t know”
    Reporter: “Have you met Lord Ashcroft?”
    Goober “Yes, just a minute ago”.

    Hyook hyook

  26. Felix 27

    Ah sorry, read “don’t bold”.

  27. BLiP 28


    Sweet as, no worries.

  28. vto 29

    ha ha blip well done. (glad I dont have any annoying habits myself..)

  29. Rex Widerstrom 30

    HS: You foul deviant of a man. That was like being rickrolled, but with Rick Astley naked.

  30. burt 31


    Is this thread about election funding – Yes/No?
    Is it about investigations re: illegal election funding activity – Yes/No ?
    Would you be comfortable if National validated 14 years covering an unknown amount of allegedly illegal spending to protect John Key from a civil court case – Yes/No ?
    Do you think we should have different standards for National vs Labour with regard to illegal actions with election funding – Yes/No ?
    Should the AG’s role be disregarded because the govt always know more about when they are and when they are not breaking the law than the AG – Yes/No ?

    Can you explain why it’s a non-issue propaganda – Yes/No ?

  31. Felix 32


    To be clear about my description of your hobby:

    “single” because it’s all you ever talk about.
    “non-issue” because no-one else is the slightest bit interested.
    “propaganda” because it’s purely a politically motivated crusade.

    Hope that makes it easier for you.

  32. burt 33

    So you can’t answer a single question that I asked then – I expected as much.

    It’s not about me Felix, this thread isn’t about me, I didn’t raise the subject of illegal funding but I did respond to it – you on the other hand have only responded to me. I’m flattered but not impressed by your obsession with me.

    • Felix 33.1

      Oh burt, you’re such a card. I thought I made it clear that I don’t give a crap about your questions.

      Silly goose.

      • burt 33.1.1

        I know you don’t give a crap about my questions, that sadly never stops you having a good old time shooting the messenger.

  33. RedLogix 34

    Some time ago you and r0b had a long and quite interesting thread that dissected this topic in very great detail. By the time we all got to the end of it, I was of the impression that you had gained a better insight into the nature of that whole affair.

    Was all that a waste of effort? Or is there some deeper reason as to why you continue your monomaniac misrepresentation of it all?

  34. burt 35


    all_your_base said

    I don’t believe for a second that Ashcroft comes all this way just to give the National Party an “update on British politics’ as they’ve claimed in the past. Where’s a good investigative journalist when you need one?

    I asked how he would react if National were found wanting (perhaps pinged by the AG after much public outrage) and rushed through some validations that killed off a court case. RedBaiter mentioned Owen Glen and Mathew didn’t really get the validity of the question in that case either.

    So far only @work has actually addressed my simple original question. I do thank Matthew and Felix for providing me with a soap box.

  35. burt 36


    … Was all that a waste of effort?

    Absolutely not. One thing I learned myself in that debate, as I suspect did rOb, was that the validations and the definitions were separate issues. Bundled together for convenience. Anita’s input was most beneficial in the debate about the technicalities of the validations (and definitions) passed under urgency. One correctly so (the definitions – enable PS to do their job = urgent) and the other conveniently (the validations – see: Darnton vs Clark = convenient).

    If I’m otherwise misrepresenting the information that is in that most interesting thread, can you please point out what exactly?

  36. RedLogix 37

    So given what you have just stated, why is it not so hard to see that the validation HAD to occur regardless of Darnton vs Clark and regardless of any repayment of funds subsequent on the AG’s report.

    The Parties (all six of them) who had supplied invoices to PS acknowledged that a moral obligation to repay existed, but never a legal one. (Hence NZ1’s protracted perigrations around donations to various charities.)

    In fact Darnton’s case was doomed to failure right at the outset simply because he had named the wrong defendant. The only person who was ever in any legal jeopardy over Parliamentary Service’s actions was in fact the Speaker of the House. The only technical illegality that ever occured was the misallocation of funds by Parliamentary Services. Helen Clark as Leader of the Labour Party was NEVER at risk of prosecution, therefore the validation process could NEVER have been a ‘convenience’ to avoid a Court case as you put it.

    Given the AG’s report, that redefined previous spending regarded as acceptable, as unacceptable, the retrospective validation of such spending going back many electoral cycles under both Labour and National govts, was a technical necessity under the Public Finance Act.

    Darnton vs Clark was not only misconceived, but completely never had anything to do with it. But we have been over this ground a zillion times, you know all this, and yet you persist in obssessing over it. It would be nice if just for once you would get similarly upset about National and ACT’s cycnical use of secret trusts explicitly designed to frustrate the intent of the 1992 Electoral Act. Given the universal condemnation of these money laundering devices, you might imagine that National would have a moral obligation to open the books on them, but they never have.

    • Felix 37.1

      Forget it RL.

      It’s like talking to a really, really stupid brick wall – a brick wall who forgets everything that’s already been discussed every time it gets drunk and stoned.

      • burt 37.1.1

        That’s right Felix, you idiots still think that RV’s were required to be passed under urgency. You are incapable of underatanding the difference between what was politically expedient and what was required for the functioning of govt.

  37. burt 38


    So given what you have just stated, why is it not so hard to see that the validation HAD to occur regardless of Darnton vs Clark and regardless of any repayment of funds subsequent on the AG’s report.

    You continue the same obfuscation that I pointed out to Matthew. Don’t you get this. The definitions of what was legal for PS were one thing. The validations for election campaign spending over a 14 year period for an unknown amount of money were another thing.

    The validations of prior spending were not required at that time, and some would say not at all. The definitions for PS were required. If the validations were to occur in their normal cycle rather than piggy backing conveniently on the definitions Darnton vs Clark would have come to it’s logical conclusion.

    IE: The actions of parliament (out of conventional cycle, under urgency) in refuting the claims of the AG would not have been seen to be killing a standing court case against the PM. The outcome of the Darnton vs Clark case may have made it very difficult for the Police to do the “not in the public interest'” re: the AG’s allegations of law breaking. Or they may have made a fool of Darnton.

    Wonder why Labour were not prepared to risk that!

  38. burt 39


    It would be nice if just for once you would get similarly upset about National and ACT’s cycnical use of secret trusts explicitly designed to frustrate the intent of the 1992 Electoral Act.

    The use of secret trusts was not in the first draft of the EFB but was explicitly added back into it by Labour. I could get upset about political parties following the letter of the law as passed in 1992 (and continued under the EFA) but I think that would be just a distraction. All_your_base has made this thread about possible illegal funding of political parties please keep up and quit the distractions designed to distract us from the real issues.

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