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Spot the difference

Written By: - Date published: 2:50 pm, February 5th, 2008 - 30 comments
Categories: john key, national - Tags: ,

I’ve just had a chance to read Key’s speech properly.

Call me a nit-picker but I don’t reckon it was a “state of the nation” speech at all.

Of 4788 words, 3185 were on youth issues – and of these, 2012 words were about youth crime and focussed almost exclusively on a subset of “1000 young people”.

So two thirds of the speech was about youth issues and just under half was about 1000 youth offenders.

Leaving aside for the time being my views on Key’s proposed solutions, I reckon let’s call a spade a spade – this ain’t no “state of the nation” speech, so let’s not pretend.

Below are the tag clouds (top 100 words from tagcrowd.com) from Key and Clark’s speeches.

See if you can guess which is which.



30 comments on “Spot the difference”

  1. Billy 1

    OK. You’re a nit-picker.

  2. all_your_base 2

    I think I just found another one – he can’t count either. By my maths Labour’s had just a little over eight years in government, not nine as he claims.

  3. Monty 3

    Oh dear me – 4 out of 4 editorials, and 80% on the polls conducted by NZ Herald and Stuff had Key as the winner. The court of public opinion has Key as the clear winner and your attempts to say Clark was better just reeks of desperation. Better drop this one and try plan 658 as all else has failed.

    National and John Key following on from the footsteps of Don Brash have managed to set the agenda at the beginning of the year for each of the past four years. National command significant lead in the polls, and no one is now listening to Clark and Labour who are worse thay yesterdays Fish and Chip paper.

    Clark has had 8 years to take action – but in desperation policy on the hoof they want to raise the school age to 18. Sssshhheeeesh – keep that up and you may even lose the vote of the school teachers.

  4. Tane 4

    Oh dear me – 4 out of 4 editorials, and 80% on the polls conducted by NZ Herald and Stuff had Key as the winner. The court of public opinion has Key as the clear winner

    Sorry if I’m nit-picking too, but last time I checked right-wing editorial writers and unscientific internet polls didn’t qualify as “the court of public opinion”.

  5. all_your_base 5

    So you’re saying it sounded like a state of the nation speech to you Monty?

  6. Billy 6


    I reckon you’re on to something here:

    We’re not number 22 in the OECD for income per person. Surely that’s wrong. Labour wouldn’t have let that happen.

    We can’t be we paying the second-highest interest rates in the developed world. Labour have been very effective managers of the economy. Everyone says so.

    He was dead wrong about tax cuts too. We’ve had those record surpluses for years, so surely Labour would have let us keep more of our own money.

    He’s also telling bullshit when he says that the health system hasn’t improved. Surely the government would have spent those extra billions they’ve poured in on obtaining better outcomes.

    That speech is just riddled with errors. Your example of him saying Labour’s been in government 9 years, when everyone knows it is 8 years and two months now and won’t be anything like 9 years until, what, the election, is bang on.

  7. Monty 7

    Key was astute enough to pick an issue which was dear to the hearts of middle New Zealand. He delivered a speech with solutions that middle NZ liked including conservative lefties (Blue collar workers)

    Key Set the political agenda (as the Nats have done since Don’s Orewa 1 speech)

    He did not make excuses dating back to 1991 (a budget that was necessary thanks to the 1987 to 1990 Labour government lies and deception – and which Clark was the Deputy PM)

    Personally I do not care whether it was a state of the National speech or something else – Key managed to set the agenda, and Clark has been out-flanked and trumped. That to me is a good day at the office.

  8. East Wellington Superhero 8

    The Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincolm (text below for your interest) is probably one of the most important speeches in US history, perhaps Western history. The US Civil War, while about economics, was also about slavery.

    It contains 266 words.

    The number of times slavery is mentioned is zero. The number of times African Americans are mentioned is zero. The number of times the Union, or the Confederacy, are mentioned is zero.

    By your rational Abraham Lincoln’s speech wasn’t about the above subjects.

    Seriously guys, get real.

    “Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us–that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion–that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.”

  9. r0b 9

    Billy: That speech is just riddled with errors.

    That speech, like most examples of dog whistle politics, is riddled with truths out of context and half errors. Politics as usual.

    Monty: Key Set the political agenda (as the Nats have done since Don’s Orewa 1 speech)

    In your dreams! Key is too busy eating dead rats to set his own agenda.

    EWS: The Gettysburg Address

    All speeches must be understood in context. In context, the GBA is more or less what you say it is. In context, Key’s speech is still not a state of the nation speech. It lacks – ambition.

    Glad I could clear all that up for you guys ‘n gals.

  10. Phil 10

    Both leaders have distanced themselves from the phrase “state of the nation” – It’s a MSM chest-thumping excercise in what is an otherwise slow news period pre-waitangi.

    You guys must be able to come up with something better than that.

  11. They can’t come up with better than that because they are on Labour’s shit list after being exposed as cheap, hollow, flunkies.

    What happened to the nice block of donated Static ip’s huh? Were they un-donated?

    What happened to the cluster? Un-donated again?

    Come on guys come clean, the longer you carry on denying it the more it proves your lies in explaining it.

  12. Monty 12

    I suppose only one eyed “labour good National Bad” socialists believe that National has not set the agenda at the start of each of the past four years.

    Why don’t you guys sopt the difference at Waitangi – Which leader is there talking and mingling with Maori – and building relationships and what leader is sulking (still after 9 years) and is not getting any media coverage?

    (here is a hint – one will be unemployed come 15 November 2008 and the other will be the new Prime Minister of New Zealand.

  13. outofbed 13

    So Monty Remind us of the person you think who was setting the agenda 3 and 4 years ago ?

    (here’s a hint they got caught telling porkies and had to resign)

  14. outofbed 14

    after they lost the Election

  15. SweetDisorder 15

    geeze you labour types are stupid. You lost the battle of the opening year speaches, thats pretty much clear, listen to people around you, not just your closed circle. By going on about it, you just look the bigger looser.

    Accept it and move on, don’t fight battles that have already been lost. BTW, tell H1 to get a move on to Waitangi as you are loosing that one as well.

  16. outofbed 16

    clever enough to spell “speeches” correctly though

  17. SweetDisorder 17


    point taken, my bad, must use reading glasses

    Still interested in you comments regarding the rest of my points. H1 has lost the advantage and is following JK, not setting the agenda. She is labours best asset (the last one left really, all the rest have fallen on their swords in protection of the queen), if the polls get much lower how long before Goff roll her?

  18. outofbed 18

    Look 5% of The Nats polling is Soft Vote Nats are on 49 %
    only 3 or 4 % of vote needs to change
    labour are not stupid come election time you will see the Nats pressurised to put there card on the table, and to mix methaphors
    “will they stack up ?

  19. AncientGeek 19

    Personally I didn’t find either speech particularly interesting in terms of policy. Helen’s was better for forward direction. Key’s speech was a good week wonder for the msm. Their editorials tended to reflect that – what sounded better on the day. But it was a shallow speech – sound bite material.

    The nats are good (as an opposition should be) at identifying problems. Before I even consider that they might be a government in waiting, as a voter, I’d want to see what they are going to do about it. Preferably without too much dissent or alternate opinions from their caucus.

    At present I think that the nats still look like an opposition-in-waiting.

  20. Monty 20

    Ancient Geek – the first ten minutes of the news on both TV1 and TV3 had John Key looking very much like the Prime Minister in waiting.

    Labour by comparison were no whre to be seen. John Key made the comment that Clark should get over it (it has been 9 years afterall) –

    Translation – Clark is still sulking and is unable to move on. Not a good look for a Prime Minister – but to be fair she is trying to hold a desperate bunch of egotisitcal self centred MPs together who are realising that their days in government are numbered and in 10 short months they are gong to get one hell of a lesson in humility. –

    So if you socialists / unionists want to spot the diference here is another: who looked very Prime Ministerial and comfortable today and who didn’t?

  21. lprent 21

    I’ve been collating dad4justice’s various accounts and IP addresses.

    His persistent trolling with little content is starting to annoy me (and by the looks of it – everyone else).

    So I’ve put a temporary moderation block on factors that identify him. This will remain in effect while I find or code a better solution, or he starts writing in a better style and with more sense.

    Unfortunately this will lead to some other comments going into moderation. I will clear them as fast as they get notified.

    I thank you for your patience over the next few days.


  22. RANDAL 22

    the difference is Keys speechwriters and technical policy wonks are dodos or maybe this is what the the plan they bought from a thinktank said to do
    Labours policy is positive while the Nationalists are mealy mouthed focussing on extremes and with the connivance of the press and media conjuring up a repetitive tv extravaganza.
    in the long run it will not work but does irreparable damage to social relations when all the focus is put on the negative

  23. burt 23

    I spotted which was which immediately. Clark’s has “government” slapped in the middle with no mention of justice anywhere.

  24. Monty 24

    Randal – your problem (and Labour’s bigger problem) is that no one wants to listen to Labour any more – when ever John speaks the media and the public are listening –

    Until labour work out how to get the publics attention again you are wasting your breath and money. (Long may it continue)

    Tonight on both TV1 and TV3 was a classic example of Popular John looking at ease with the people at Waitangi, and getting a load of media coverage (as well as the TV3 Poll putting the Nats well ahead yet again) and Labour looking frightened and confused and like a bunch of losers.

  25. gobsmacked 25

    “Tonight on both TV1 and TV3 was a classic example of Popular John looking at ease with the people at Waitangi”

    Was he standing in front of an Iwi/Kiwi billboard?

  26. outofbed 26

    Was he eating a dead rodent ?

  27. Phil 27

    “Was he standing in front of an Iwi/Kiwi billboard”

    Probably not, but do you think Helen still carries around a ‘Pledge Card of Broken Promises’?

  28. Phil 28

    Oh, by the way OOB, do you have anything to back up the ‘soft vote’ call, or is that just a figure you pulled out of your arse?

    Go on, be honest now…

  29. outofbed 29

    Phil Look at National vote in election and polls % over the last few years Then look at Lab greens and see which one is most consistent and who has the most core voters
    One quick policy release that reflected Nationals “true” position and they would drop like a stone in the polls

    If the 49 % that National was a core/hard vote I don’t think we would see the rodent eating fest and economy with the truth that we see now.

  30. Phil 30

    Dig a little deeper into the polling, and you’ll see that the demographics of those individuals in that the ‘newest’ 10% of the Nat’s vote are pretty much middle class suburban voters.

    This is a group that dont tend to swing drasticly from Labour to National and back again – they drift slowly in one direction, and then turn around and drift slowly back in the other. The slide the Nats experienced between 1990 and 2002 was partly a result of that. What we’ve seen between about 2003/04 and now is the gradual movement back in the other direction.

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