Ten Bridges Too Far

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, April 17th, 2015 - 17 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, accountability, by-election, crosby textor, Dirty Politics, john key, making shit up, national, Parliament, slippery, spin, transport - Tags:

One of the John Key’s “tells” which indicate that he’s in the shit is how the nature of his lying changes. Most of his lies tend to be various forms of random, one-off dribbles stemming from the cold pool of contempt he has for the political system in general and the average New Zealand voter in particular. When the pressure is really on, however, John Key’s lies become more sophisticated and calculated,  usually appearing in clusters. A typical example of this is his cluster of lies surrounding the BMW issue which eventually culminated in one of his most repugnant lies.  

That cluster of lies started with a silly dribble back in early 2010 before stretching out for nearly a year, each lie along the way only making things worse.  Now, with Crosby Textor at his side, John Key has really got into the swing of things. He has learned to employ all manner of specialist PR techniques including ad homs, blame-shifting, distraction,  use of proxies to defuse the situation, and false equivalence, all woven together in an intricately performed semantic shuffle designed to  provide wiggle room in case he does get caught. A recent and particularly Orwellian example of this is John Key’s defense of the GCSB’s international spying. The lies have been going on for years now and recently devolved down to his attempting to differentiate the term “collection” from, within the spying context, its concomitant term “surveillance”.  

Emboldened by getting away with such tricksy manoeuvres for six long years, John Key and a smattering of his acolyte National Ltd™ ministers are employing these tactics in matters both large and small. This week, thanks to the sterling work of Rob Salmond, John Key’s Little Helper, Simon Bridges, was caught out breaching the Cabinet Manual by misusing his ministerial authority during the Northland by-election. 

Its now becoming apparent that National Ltd™ knew it was sailing close to the wind on this. When the matter was raised, its first tactic was denial. Evidence for this is John Key’s point-blank refusal on 11 March to answer questions in Parliament about the Northland By-Election Bridges Bribe on the basis that he was speaking as Leader of National Ltd™ and not Prime Minister.  Watch here (if you can bear  The Speaker’s partisan bullshit) as John Key tells The House the Northland Bridges Bribe was about National Ltd™ policy . . . 



. . . get that? 

Now, both John Key and Simon Bridges would have us believe the request for information and advice from officials was made legitimately on the basis that the information being sort was not advice but, rather, factual information that Bridges was entitled to as Transport Minister. 

Simon Bridges has since gone to ground leaving his master to roll out the lies. So far, in this particular cluster, we’ve seen . . .  

You are allowed to use the resources of the officials in terms of what would be Government policy.

No, I did not mislead the House (??)

As long as Simon Bridges didn’t get any policy advice from his officials about developing the “10 bridges for your vote!” bribe, then there’s no possible problem

under the Cabinet Manual. Labour did the same thing as Bridges when it used “officials actually in my opinion actually” to get policy advice as they did in the 2008 campaign with deposit guarantees

I assumed that all ten bridges up for double-laning in Northland were justified on a cost benefit analysis

. . . five in row. How many more lies have Crosby Textor prepared for John Key on this little issue? On the other hand, perhaps National Ltd™ and Crosby Textor are hoping the current State Services Commission witch-hunt for those officials who should have known not to provide the information will produce some public servant heads to put on spikes. 

What a sad situation for New Zealand.  This issue has stretched on for too long now. National Ltd™ knows any back down at this stage will only highlight the instinctive initial response and its follow-up orchestrated machinations to avoid accountability. All it would have taken for this issue to melt away, as John Armstrong pointed out, is if Simon Bridges would’ve admitted his fault and offered up a sincere apology. Mind you, when it comes to Simon Bridges, and National Ltd™ generally, sincerity is not exactly a strong feature. Nor is telling the truth.  Good to remember also that when it comes to apologies, the likes of John Key would rather apologise to Cameron Slater than, say, Tania Billingsley, never mind apologising to the wider New Zealand public which is seeing its Parliament reduced to farce. 

de Joux says to go for the confusion technique. I'll play it as leader of the party and you say there was nothing wrong with a Ministerial request for data,  and then stay schtum. Got it?

de Joux says to go for the confusion technique. I’ll play it as leader of the party and you say there was nothing wrong with a Ministerial request for data. And then stay schtum. Later on, we’ll nail the public service for it. Capisce?

17 comments on “Ten Bridges Too Far”

  1. saveNZ 1

    +1 Blip, I think you have summed it up perfectly.

  2. Pernille 2

    “intricately performed semantic shuffle”

    Fabulous phrase.

  3. emergency mike 3

    The Labour did it too one is a classic prepared Key hit-and-run. He knows it’s bullshit, but by the time someone goes away and looks it up to find that out, it’s already been reported leaving the impression that there is some equivalence. No matter if a few leftie bloggers point it out, that won’t make the noos…

  4. McFlock 4

    Indeed, well covered.

    Another thing I find interesting is that in the early days of bland key the ministers would be the ones covering for their boss – he announced all the good news, they fronted for all the shite. Now the situation has been almost completely reversed.

    I’m sure key’s getting bored with the job again.

    • emergency mike 4.1

      It’s almost like he’s decided that he’s the best excuses maker around, so why let someone else do it?

      Either that or it’s simply that with so much bs having been churned out by Nat ministers in the past few years, the well of public trust is drying up, and Honest John is their last gasp trump card they have saved up as long as they could. But when that one dries up there’s nothing left.

    • Jones 4.2

      Key will throw anyone to the lions if it will save his own skin or they are past their useby date. I suspect that as Key is fronting for Bridges there’s something in this that would implicate Key… so he’s really still looking after No.1 and covering his own arse. Or perhaps Bridges is seen as important to the future of National (succession planning?)

    • tracey 4.3

      or some are starting to say “its your lie you tell it”.

  5. keyman 5

    so what John key lies big deal the important thing is john key fronts for new Zealand and how lucky we are to have John key as PM not some commie pinko

    • Murray Rawshark 5.1

      Hi again Fizzy.

    • cogito 5.2

      If lies are no big deal, try lying to the Police, or the IRD, or to a judge, or even to your employer. In fact I hope you do, so you end up where you belong with statements like yours. And, sure as hell, Key will end up there too sooner or later, because Kiwis will reject his lies and he will go down in NZ history as the fascist that he truly is.

      • keyman 5.2.1

        John is the the PM dirty politics proved that the law doesn’t apply to John .John makes the law ,John key is the law John key is new Zealand
        ,law only applies to poor people not John key

  6. cogito 6

    “the information being sort”
    sought not sort!

  7. Every time I read a story about Key lying I cringe. I cringe because the caliber of this man was there, ready for the exposing back in 2008.

    One week before the election Key’s 1991 statement to the Serious Fraud Office investigation into failed corporate high-flier Equiticorp surfaced. Key had been interviewed by investigators and went on to corroborate the information an ex-colleague had given to the inquiry. This colleague/friend was facing fraud charges and Key’s statement, parts of which are now a matter of public record, confirmed the two had met for lunch on a particular date, and during that lunch meeting another event (of interest to the investigators) allegedly happened. Despite there been an issue with the date, but both men where steadfast they were remembering it correctly because the date was “Key’s farewell”. Key, they alleged was leaving one company for another and they were celebrating his last day.

    However this timeline conflicts with media reports from February 2008 that discuss at length Key’s working relationship with infamous currency trader Andrew Krieger at this new firm. Key’s ex boss, Gavin Walker, discussed at length this relationship, as did Key himself, telling journalists’ he could recall his first phone call with Krieger, where the New York based trader asked him about New Zealand’s GDP and monetary supply. Walker told John Roughan, for his book “John Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister”, he gave Key a list of top clients on Key’s first day, of which Krieger was one of them. Krieger himself though resigned from the firm some six months before Key told SFO investigators he started with the firm. Krieger, not only resigned from the firm six months before, he removed himself from the currency markets altogether two months before Key’s SFO statement alleges he started with Krieger’s firm.

    What is most disturbing about all this is not that Labour’s Mike William’s was pilloried for trying to uncover information about the SFO Equiticorp investigation, accused of dirty politics, although that was pretty disgusting in itself; rather, instead of investigating the discrepancies in Key’s statement, his SFO statement was used as ‘proof’ he was telling the ‘truth’.

    I ask you New Zealand, if Key’s SFO statement is not a fabrication, then his relationship with Andrew Krieger is, and if his relationship with Andrew Krieger is true, the his statement to the SFO a lie.

    Either way, John Key is a liar. It’s hightime someone called him out on it.

    Yours sincerely, Enough.

    • felix 7.1


      He has never squared his stories on these matters, and even worse no journalist has seriously taken him to task over them.

      He was either responsible for the fraudulent payments that sent two men to jail, or he was responsible for ripping 300 million dollars out of NZ and damn near destroying our currency.

      One of those is necessarily true.

  8. keyman 8

    it has never been proven that John key has ever lied
    if he had lied i would know i don’t therefore he hasn’t move on!

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