The Hager Book – National fights back

Written By: - Date published: 12:07 pm, August 15th, 2014 - 91 comments
Categories: books, john key, national - Tags: , ,

You can always tell how desperate National has been hurt by a scandal by the ferocity of the counterattack that it and its allies respond with. Based on this it seems the Hager book has done a lot of damage.  And it has done so by confirming as a myth the idea that the John Key persona, that kind affable leader who will not engage in politics as usual or dirty tricks and who will seek to build consensus and agreement, is nothing more than a Crosby Textor designed construct.

The response has been multi faceted.  Obviously staffers started to load social media with suggestions that Labour was just as bad and this was just politics as usual, even though Key promised a different way.  This particular comment by someone called Mark posted at 1 am the day after the book was released attracted my attention, not only for the lateness of the comment but as an example of one part of the counterattack.  To equate the Standard with Slater’s hate filled website is ludicrous.  Posts are policy and not personality driven and the only time personalities are involved is when there is a political angle to the story.

For the record I blog under my own steam.  My posts are often as Green friendly as Labour friendly.  They are not part of some cunning political media strategy.  The Standard site survives on the good will of a number of dedicated and unpaid people.  No Fonterra or Big Tobacco or any other sort of money is used in the writing of posts.

Other responses from the right include a rather strange attempt by David Farrar to gain sympathy (I won’t link) and the hauling out of the right wing media mouthpieces to claim that there is nothing in the book and it is much ado about nothing.  I wonder if any of them have actually read the book.

Slater continues to try and present a world view where everything he has done has been legal but everything done against him is part of an illegal conspiracy.  Such complete and utter confidence in oneself is jaw droopingly spectacular.

TV3 have done the country a favour by posting a 20 minute video of Key responding to questions about the book.  The content is fascinating.  I challenge Standarnistas to fact check everything that Key says because there seems to be a number of holes and Key should be called to account for this.  I’m thinking about BLiP in particular.

What is even more interesting is his body language.  I have never seen or heard John Key sound so sick.  And there is an intensity in the mood of the reporters perhaps caused by a dawning collective sense that Key is not being straight with them.

We live in very interesting times.  The reverberations from Hager’s book are going to continue for a while.

91 comments on “The Hager Book – National fights back ”

  1. karol 1

    micky, your link to mark’s comment just goes to TS mainpage.

    Is it this comment?

    Key’s demeanour in that video just looks weary, and as though he’s just going through the motions.

    The Nats just fall back on the same strategies that Hager has outlined in Hollow Men & Dirty Politics: spin, divert, keep repeating a spin/smear line til it’s taken as fact, and to give back criticism “double”.

    [Thanks Karol. Now fixed – MS]

    • Tracey 1.1

      as usual it takes about 24 hours of key training, and joyce smirkingly spinning before key gives substantive answers.

    • Plan B 1.2

      I think he demeanour is a trick, used to deflate situations. It probably works a lot better than roaring and striding, – the idea is to look passive and a bit quite – useful when firing people, oh well never mind, nothing to be done sort of body language
      they are my thoughts on it anyway.

  2. Blue 2

    I hope Nicky Hager releases the actual emails, as he is considering doing. That was the real drawback of his book, that they weren’t included.

    It gives National room to lie. I want Hager to release the emails and then watch the shady sods deny the accusations.

    • Shrubbery 2.1

      I think he’s just going to trap them in lies and wait until they’ve categorically denied as many specific allegations as possible, and then bust them with the e-mails.

      • infused 2.1.1

        I don’t think that’s it.

        I think it’s more of a legal issue. The emails need to be released though, and should have been released to begin with.

        • Lanthanide 2.1.1.1

          “The emails need to be released though, and should have been released to begin with.”

          Although how would that have been done? As a printed appendix in the book, blowing out the page count (and therefore cost) for no reason? Or published online, in which case people wouldn’t need to buy and read the book to see the details?

          • infused 2.1.1.1.1

            Well that’s probably the reason… money.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.1.1

              It’s amazing how often the RWNJs complain about people earning a living. Meanwhile, if Hager was doing it for free and was on the unemployment benefit they’d be calling him bludger.

        • Tracey 2.1.1.2

          I think hollow men had a bigger back end, from moemory

  3. Pete 3

    “To equate the Standard with Slater’s hate filled website is ludicrous. Posts are policy and not personality driven and the only time personalities are involved is when there is a political angle to the story.”

    Seriously, you are deluded like David Cunliffe et al! This blog far and away outstrips Whaleoil for vicious, defamatory, negative and personality attack style content. Whaleoil moderates all posters regardless of affiliation or longevity; you allow hate speech and vile content, even condone it.

    Do you actually understand that this mind-set is what cripples the left in the modern day NZ? People may hold their noses at National and their strong arm tactics; they literally run screaming from the offerings of the left. Did you see the Ipsos Poll, another outlier, or just the reality staring you in the face? Wake up people, you won’t win any elections or sundry battles while you continue to spray verbal shots across our bows.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      Hey Pete, dickhead, I’ll tell you one difference between Whaleoil and The Standard:

      The power elite use and pay Whaleoil to spread lies and scandal that they don’t want to be tainted with themselves, but wish to smear the Opposition with. It is fundamentally undemocratic.

      As for your concerns about how the Left is doing in NZ: fuck off.

      • Dumrse 3.1.1

        There are a raft of differences between WO and the Standard, sheer numbers must be a good start. Never mind, after this NH email fiasco dies down the Standard may come out on top, especially if they have David as the PM then, the leaking will all start over again………
        Chin up, stay focused and remember, swearing doesn’t make you tough.

      • TheContrarian 3.1.2

        Is your lack of self-awareness and irony on purpose, Tat?

    • mickysavage 3.2

      Comments get pretty robust at times but this is what happens when you have an open policy on comments.

      How about you back up your claim. You will see that I said “posts”. Link to one post that involves personal attack and denigration for the sake of it.

      • Pete 3.2.1

        See directly above! No further comment required.

        • mickysavage 3.2.1.1

          Back it up with a rational argument.

          Are you replying to CV’s comment? I understand his frustration.

          If you are talking about this post then detail the breach. There is a clear political angle with discussing Slater. His particular form of attack politics has been paid for by the corporates and sanctioned by the beehive. His mode of operating is fair game.

          Any other examples?

          • Pete 3.2.1.1.1

            I made a rational argument regarding the differences between Whaleoil and The Standard. They are based on my (limited) time reading and contributing to both.

            I stand by my personal judgement, and CV’s response above was a timely evidence supporting my position.

            I don’t need to provide historic evidence; I’ll just point out new instances as they arise – which I expect will be in the first few replies to this post.

            Easy prey!

            • mickysavage 3.2.1.1.1.1

              Like I said before I was referring to posts not comments. So name me one Standard post that resembles something Slater would put up.

              • Pete

                Moderation is targeted at comments, The Standard, by allowing unfettered ranting and abuse, immediately lowers the tone and potential reach of the posts.

                Expanding my previous, to also include posts.

                [lprent: Read the policy. It isn’t unfettered. It is controlled to the extent we want it to be. In particular read the section on self-martyrdom offences. I’m always happy to exercise the ban option on self-martyrdoms. ]

                • mickysavage

                  So you agree that Standard posts are different but there is no difference because the moderating policies are similar. Am I getting this right?

                  • Pete

                    Post are naturally poles apart, and sorry to burst your bubble but moderation standards (no pun intended) are likewise!

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      After all, everyone remembers all those times The Standard came to national attention for abusing grieving families, right? Right?

                    • Pete

                      OAB (below), not right, but that’s one instance where brain was potentially engaged before mouth, oh, and it was a Post not comments, and thus likely there was some background to incite that type of response!

                      Be interesting to see what the sunlight reveals regarding The Standard over coming weeks, won’t it, if Hager’s stolen emails are fully disclosed? Or will he be selective there as well LOL?

                      [lprent: Ok looking at your comments today you are just trolling. 6 week ban again. bye. ]

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Straws, clutch at them, clutch at them. I’ll throw you the lifebelt once Puckish Rogue’s finished with it.

                    • McFlock

                      I’d be very interested if slater emails detailed his dirty tricks against commenters and authors on TS, yes.

                      But I’m also intrigued that when you said “This blog far and away outstrips Whaleoil for vicious, defamatory, negative and personality attack style content. Whaleoil moderates all posters regardless of affiliation or longevity; you allow hate speech and vile content, even condone it.”, you were only talking about comments and not posts?

                      In which case, have you read some of the wailspew comments regarding a sexual assault complainant?

    • karol 3.3

      This looks like, what Slater & Collins call “giving it back double”.

      TS is a left blog. The posts are explicitly partisan. They don’t focus on smearing people via digging dirt on their personal lives.

      Your characterisation of the differences in moderation approaches are worthy of a Tui ad.

      Defamatory comments here? If they were, I’m sure WO would have taken it to court.

    • Bob 3.4

      Sorry Pete, I am going to stick up for The Standard here, at least there is a forum for robust discussion and a place to vent fairly unrestricted. I can see why Whaleoil restricted their comment section, but it does fly in the face of the free speech he claims to fight for.

  4. wtl 4

    I really don’t understand why there are so many people coming on here to defend the actions of Slater et al. If this had come from the other side (e.g. involved the Labour party and the Standard), I would be one of the first to criticise those involved. I’m sure many (but obviously not all) of the other regulars here would do the same.

    That, I think, is what difference ultimately is between Whaleoil and the Standard, and those who frequent each site.

    • Ant 4.1

      It demonstrates the difference between left and right.

      • Kiwi Local. 4.1.1

        Wtl, Ant just got in before me,

        It’s called giving us all a fair go; an old Kiwi institution of humility we on the left have had and we were born with respecting.

        But now unfortunately the right are loosing that humility for all Kiwis both rich & poor for fast Eddie money chasing..

        This has shocked all Kiwis when we even saw on TV1 during the news last night a skit of those several vitriolic attacks on our west coast folks that they couldn’t repeat on TV and the East Christchurch called ——–folk, who have suffered through hell and back,

        If we can’t respect and help our neighbour’s what are we?

        That is the difference between the right & left.

    • Lanthanide 4.2

      Yep, if Labour had cocked up, I’d be bagging them.

    • Bob 4.3

      So what did you think of Josie Pagani’s comments today outing Standard bloggers on the Labour payroll http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-15082014/#comment-867251
      Isn’t this in a similar ilk to Ede?

      • McFlock 4.3.1

        grasping at straws.

      • Hanswurst 4.3.2

        Three things are interesting. Firstly, she wasn’t asked to substantiate her claims at all and didn’t do so. Of course, given that she hasn’t published a book or gained the media attentionthrough these comments that Hager has, it would be unwarranted to expect her to face the same challenges; however, the lack of any kind of substantiation does warrant rolling one’s eyes and assuming it’s probably bullshit. She can lay out and publish a decent argument if she’s so concerned.

        Secondly, she says that “they” would be better off refraining from saying “Isn’t it terrible using bloggers, etc”, because it might expose what she alleges as their hypocrisy, and instead concentrating on the substance of the allegations against Collins, Ede etc.. She can only mean the Labour Party orthe Greens, since hypocrisy in this case would mean the use of bloggers by political parties. As far as I can tell, the responses by Labour and the Greens have been responding to the substance, and not focussing on the use of blogs. Regardless of the merit of her unsubstantiated allegations, she’s putting up a straw man.

        Thirdly, one of the names she gave, Clint Smith, used to post under the pseudonym “Steve Pearson”, IIRC, and was one of the first to provide his real name when he decided to provide a media voice for The Standard. “Steve Pearson” hasn’t posted here for a long time, and Smith put up a post to the effect that he would withdraw from posting on account of having got a job which made it inappropriate for him to continue doing so. There may be more to it, but on the face of it it doesn’t speak volumes for the quality of Pagani’s information.

        Seeing as the (rhetorical?) question in your comment can be answered in a few seconds and without research by someone like me, with no particular knowledge, connections or aptitude for dissecting political spin, it seems like you are just hearing Pagani say something that supports what you would like to think, doing no research to check its quality and then requesting that others respond to it as though it were true.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.3.3

        Josie Pagani’s knowledge of anything really doesn’t appear to extend beyond her nose.

      • wtl 4.3.4

        Isn’t this in a similar ilk to Ede?

        Firstly, the information provided by Pagani appears to be incorrect, as indicated by lprent and Bunji’s responses, so it fails at the first hurdle. If there were people being paid by as Labour staffers posting here while still denying it, then yes, it would be wrong and I would criticise it.

        In any case, what Ede was doing was much much more than this – he was coordinating actors on political enemies using blogs (so that politicians could avoid getting their hands dirty), and also facilitating these attacks through corrupt means e.g. disclosing OIA requests from others to Slater so that Slater could prepare a response prior to the information release, or in the case of the SIS information, helping to ensure the material was declassified and reached Slater very quickly. This has not happened with Labour and the Standard and if it did, I would be deeply disturbing and I would want it shut down immediately, with those involved gone and prosecuted if they did anything illegal.

  5. Weepus beard 5

    Jong-Kee brain had set slur level to maximum in that little, long clip.

  6. Bill 6

    On the basis of that interview, Key’s kinda fucked. Also interested as to how he can figure that IMP posting a video that demonstrates peoples’ anger to some degree, or the effigy burning that’s also an indication of how pissed off/angry/frustrated some people are, is somehow ‘the left’ running a dirty tricks campaign. Strange place that Planet Key.

    • weka 6.1

      I thought some of the media asked pertinent questions, and then there were glaring ones like that that they just ignored. Are you not being a conspiracy theorist Prime Minister?

  7. Brian 7

    Left wing conspiracy theorist

    Say it often enough…….

    • Rodel 7.1

      Yep ‘ Left wing conspiracy theorist’
      Straight from the odious Frank Luntz’ book, ‘Words That Work’ George Bush’s Republican spin doctor’s manual. “Repetition repetition repetition.” (page 11)

      Say it until you’re sick of hearing it and the people will believe.

  8. felix 8

    You know for someone who scoffs at “left-wing conspiracy theorists” he spends an awful lot of time detailing massive conspiracies against him.

  9. wyndham 9

    It seems to me that the National Party strategy re Nicky’s revelations is to deny everything and bullshit their way out. Joyce called in almost immediately to perform his usual ad hominem comments. Ditto key.Part of this ploy is to maintain the status quo re Judith Collins. Nothing to see here.
    Yes, Key looked positively unwell in the Dunedin press conference. He is just beginning to reap the harvest of years of the nasty and vindictive behaviour that he has been ringleading in parliament’s question time. Joyce and Collins close behind. It would be difficult to find a trio better versed in the use of sarcasm,sneer and personal attack.

    • wyndham 9.1

      Meant to say: Thank God for Nicky Hager !

      • ianmac 9.1.1

        True wyndham (though I don’t think god will be part of it.) It must be a very stressful time for Nicky Hager. He knows that the Dirty Tricks Brigade will set out to destroy him. To stand tall on his convictions in spite of the pressure shows a man of remarkable courage, ethics and morality.

    • Pete 9.2

      Helen, Heather and Mike – scary troika!

      • jackp 9.2.1

        Pete, go back to kiwiblog and sulk with David Farrar. My gosh, David is trying hard to look like a victim. After what he tried to do to Winston Peters in 2011, I have no sympathy for that sob. But my wife gave me the book as a present and have read a few pages. So far, my suspicions have been right. Winston was “attacked” because Farrar’s polling showed him high, and dangerous. I lived in the United States and since I lived here I have watched the political arena become more like the states..Never disguss policy, only attack and you have to admit The Herald has been feral against Cunliffe particularly John Armstrong. I don’t hear the MSM asking the prime minister to resign.

  10. emergency mike 10

    11:53 “Probably if I looked at your emails Patrick Gower, they might be pretty rough too.”

    Veiled threat much? Check out the nasty grimace he delivers this line with. The smiling assassin.

  11. cont 11

    I’m probably going to get banned for bringing this up but…

    I find your response to David Farrar interesting, he’s (naturally) quite upset that information from his company has either been stolen by someone infiltrating his office or his office systems have been hacked. I inferred from your tone that you think he had it coming, and that this theft is morally justified because Farrar is an openly pro-National pollster, talks to Slater from time to time and has received info from National insiders to help write posts on his blog, none of which is surprising.

    Am I correct in that understanding?

    [lprent: I don’t think so. It sounds like there is a high staff and probably a casual staff turnover as there is with most polling companies. Most likely someone on the staff copied then down, took a copy home deliberately or by accident and eventually they got emailed them to Hager. I have stuff like that turn up all of the time as my email is public.

    To me this sounds like both false outrage and a silly but classic diversion technique by Farrar. As he says himself – he has no idea what happened.

    I’d guess that micky felt the same. ]

  12. nadis 12

    I’m not going to try and dismiss Hagers conclusions – some are probably true, some demosntrably aren’t, but there is no smoking gun. And for the record if it can be proved that SIS information was leaked then not only should the people responsible resign, but they should also go to jail.

    However, there is a crime show on CI called “The First 48” which follows murder detectives for the first 48 hours of an investigation – if there is no suspect or breakthrough within the first 48 then the probability of a resolution falls dramatically.

    Hagers book is just like that – we are 48 hours in now and clearly interest is waning. Labour MP’s are backing away from public utterances, we’ve seen almost no fire and Brimstone from Cunliffe, lots of questions about the hypocrisy of Hager, lots of questions about his veracity (Hide denials, Collins denials), the lack of balance i.e no evidence of left dirty politics when clearly it exists on all sides of the spectrum. Politics is dirty. Newsflash – everybody knew that. Remember H Fee?

    And you can already see the declining tide of outrage, focus etc from media. My call is in a weeks time no-one will care except people who see this as a magic bullet. And even in the first day it never reached wider society as a “must discuss” issue, just blog dwellers and political junkies.

    • weka 12.1

      The SIS didn’t leak information. As I understand it (haven’t read this bit yet) Slater was told to make a specific OIA request to the SIS, and someone declassified SIS documents so they could be provided. Best guess is that Key declassified them, and Ede instructed Slater on what to aske for. Someone made sure the documents were released immediately. I find it hard to believe that the SIS would do that against policy unless instructed/requested to by someone else.

    • karol 12.2

      Read what Paul Buchanan has to say about it.

      Probably won’t impact on voting directly, but will weaken the Nat/Slater smear machine.

      Cunliffe was pretty firm on tonight’s TV3 News – that the book records some very unacceptable behaviour. But contrary to what Key claims, Cunliffe has been out on the hustings talking policy – his major focus right now.

      For the Nats – death by a thousand cuts.

    • Kiwi local. 12.3

      nadis

      See the way you want to see it.

      But people are now un-nerved by the knowledge that all this dirty political shit was going on right next to the PM’s own office on the ninth floor.
      Key as head of SIS GCSB Key has immense power, while he dismisses it as nothing.

      Al the while he has given himself complete control over snooping and spying on you and everyone else.

      People feeling uneasy now, and that is what is going to change the tide for his former popularity, as the reality of what is really going on in the underside of this country’s political arena.

      Judith Collins grinned tonight after questioned about the call by Cunliffe for her to resign she said boldly ” I have many Friends.”

    • Draco T Bastard 12.4

      I’m not going to try and dismiss Hagers conclusions – some are probably true, some demosntrably aren’t, but there is no smoking gun.

      Contradicted himself in one sentence. The mark of a desperate man that.

  13. nadis 13

    Weka I agree. I don’t think it remotely likely that the sis has leaked anything but the hager allegation is that key/ede leaked it

  14. karol 14

    The most glaring bullshit from Key is when he constantly says it’s the “left” that do dirty tricks, because they don’t want to talk about policy and can’t win on policy.

    Actually the truth is exactly the opposite. Labour and the Greens have been rolling out a load of detailed policy, invited the press, etc, etc – streamed it online… and from Key and the Nats….? A few dribbles of other things dressed up as new policy.

    Key pointed to the FJK video and the effigy burning video as dirty tricks that “the left” is doing rather than focusing on policy. A reporter pointed out those vids didn’t come from Labour. Key dismissed that saying it was the “left”

    And, actually, it was the Nat smear machine that beat up those videos as a way to smear the IMP.

    Key also both tries to distance himself from Slater, while defending him. Key often downplays Slater’s activities as “shock jock” and doing things other bloggers (and journalist) do.

    A very interesting part of the video is when Key is asked to defend Ede’s actions. Each time Key defends him, but his voice goes into a squeaky high pitch – a tell, that indicates Key was stating that in a stressed state. I would say that indicates the weak point. He also says that if Ede was involved in rummaging through Labour’s confidential info, he didn’t do if as part of the National Party.

    Here Key may have hammered a nail into his own future coffin. he’s playing for time, hoping it will die down at least until the election.

    It’s always the lies that’ll get people.

    • Puddleglum 14.1

      Hi karol,

      Yes, that phrase that John Key kept repeating about the “left” doing all of this dirty politics and that Hager was part of the “left” was interesting.

      Apparently, the “left” is to be considered as a whole, yet Cameron Slater – who most people would assume is part of the “right” – is, instead, called by Key, repeatedly, someone who is ‘independent” who has “nothing to do with National”.

      Oddly, then, even ‘effigy burning’ which is not linked to a political party of the “left” is part of the “left”, but the activities of a blogger who is a close friend of a National Party Minister, is (or has been) clearly in frequent contact with Jason Ede and has John Key’s number on his cellphone is not, for some reason, part of the “right” and all the ‘dirty politics’ the “right” are into.

      Logical gymnastics at its best from our PM.

      • weka 14.1.1

        It’s the line that the RWNJs here use eg this some guy on FB posts a pitcure of Key in a Hitler uniform and suddenly the whole left is anti-semitic (yes, that one didn’t even make sense).

        Key’s other tell (pretty common amongst lots of people) is that when he is lying and saying yes about something he shakes his head because he really means no. He does it a couple of times in that video.

        I don’t watch Key on tv much, and I thought he did pretty well considering how many bare faced lies he told. If you don’t think about what he is saying and just take it at face value, then he comes across well. I can see why people buy into that, but the lack of critical think makes me despair.

        Was nice to see the disbelief from some of the media too.

        • Rodel 14.1.1.1

          Weka
          Very well put. How do we make sure every kiwi reads your comments?

          It was possum in the headlights desperation by Key.

          Maybe, just maybe, the disbelief in some of the media that you mention is the beginning of those car headlights.

          They may be finally switching on.

      • Andrew Troup 14.1.2

        Piercingly put !

    • Tracey 14.2

      they will have been given words and phrases to use over and over

      Left
      Conspiracy
      Stolen emails

      Rinse and repeat

  15. karol 15

    Oh look, back in June 2011, The National Party owns up to exploiting the security breach in the Labour Party website.

    In the TV 3 video, linked in micky’s post, Key claims the Nats had nothing to do with it…

    Article by NZPA and NBR staff: June 14, 2011:

    The National Party has admitted exploiting a security hole in the Labour Party website but denies passing data to a right-wing blogger who plans to release the names of Labour Party donors.

    National’s president, Peter Goodfellow, confirmed a head office staffer accessed the data but denied it was passed on.

    The Privacy Commissioner has raised concerns and is monitoring the situation.

    The confession means lawyers’ opinions sought by NBR now apply in part to Natonal’s situation as well as Whaleoil blogger Cameron Slater, whom earlier today threatened to release the names of 452 Labour Party donors.
    […]
    A head office staffer accessed the data but only out of concern that National’s own website had similar vulnerabilities.

    “There was so much chatter about there being a gaping hole in the Labour website,” he told NZPA.

    “I would have thought it’s like driving past a fire and stopping to have a look.”

    National had not passed on any information and did not intend to, Mr Goodfellow said.

    Staff were looking into whether the data had been retained, but Mr Goodfellow would not give an undertaking to destroy any details still being held.

    He denied National had an obligation to inform Labour about the security flaw.

    • weka 15.1

      Ede only ‘looked at’ the data, out of curiosity, as anyone would, shrug 😉

      Karol, did you post a comment yesterday about Key saying how many times he talks to Slater. I thought it was kind of weekly. In the video he says every 3 or 4 months.

      • felix 15.1.1

        I had the impression he’d said weekly too, but apparently the question put to him was along the lines of:
        “How often do you talk to him? Weekly? Monthly?”

        To which he replied(ish):
        “I’d have to check my files”

        Which certainly gives the impression that the answer must be somewhere in the vicinity of weekly or monthly, because otherwise the answer would have been along the lines of:
        “definitely not weekly, but I’d have to check to be exact”

        Of course I’m pretending that the PM in answering is actually trying to provide information, not obscure it.

      • karol 15.1.2

        Yes. Key’s older comment said he saw Slater every so often ans didn’t specify a time period.

        • ianmac 15.1.2.1

          I am sure back then Key laughed when asked and said, “I talk to Cameron every week.” And his laugh said “So what?”

          • karol 15.1.2.1.1

            The newspaper articles I’ve found online just say Key said he talked with Slater every so often, or regularly.

  16. Tracey 16

    So far, have any msm journos tapped their sources and printed that their info is

    Hager is right
    Hager is wrong

    And on which things.

  17. Glenn 17

    First Planet Key then FJK video.

    The Internet Mana Party has taken down an advert which features a crowd of young people chanting expletives against Prime Minister John Key after it was found to breach advertising standards.

    The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) ruled on Friday that the party’s “Join the Revolution” advert which was published on YouTube had gone beyond what was acceptable.

    The ad featured a crowd of young people chanting “f*** John Key” at a Canterbury Internet Party party hosted by Kim Dotcom – though the swear word was bleeped out.

    The ASA said political parties should be prepared for robust expression of opinion from voters, but the ad was likely to offend against prevailing community standards.
    https://nz.news.yahoo.com/a/-/top-stories/24727172/internet-partys-advert-banned/

    • karol 17.1

      Also, Key is scurrilous to suggest those videos, which express a disliking of Key, are similar to, or worse than the Slater-Ede smear tactics.

  18. Andrew Troup 18

    I’m not convinced the National spokesmen (at least, the ones I’ve heard) actually see anything wrong with the behaviour as revealed.

    If their performance is strained or unconvincing, I think it’s because they’re being forced to defend what they believe to be (self-evidently) OK.

    And the fact that they clearly think everyone else is already “at it” supports that contention.
    If they have convinced themselves of that, then they will believe that they are entitled to go at least as far, in the spirit of ‘fair’ competition.

    It’s not just the fast-food culture of the US which is colonising the world: American vices are much more contagious than American virtues, and (as far as I can see) that has been true for the better part of a century.

  19. Dont worry. be happy 19

    The right fight back al right….just heard Judith Collins on Nat Rad blasting Nicky Hagar and the claims in his books re her and she bla bla blaad for a while and then she sounded that sweet sick coy suppressed giggle way she does when she has the knife about to plunge through some ones back and said something like….” And he with his legal problems and everything. It will be interesting.” More leaking of,private information from this Justice Minister?or just the promise/threat of some mud that might stick? She sure is slow to learn, that tide has turned. She got left behind.

    • Murray Olsen 19.1

      Ah well, she already threatened Katie Bradford and then had to withdraw. She’s as much of a sociopath as Slater, but she seems to have quite a large CBT club ready to leap to her defence. Many of them seem to love her even more than they love Key. She is the worst possible choice for Minister of Justice. I don’t think she has a clue what the word means.

  20. philj 20

    xox
    Brilliant performance from the PM. Oscar winning. A bit repetitive, but never once lost his lines. Did he say that he texts Slater when he doesn’t understand something?

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    Excuse me, but I just don’t feel like being polite today. What is going on with Simeon Brown? I mean, really? After spending valuable Ministerial time, focus, and government resources to overturn tailored speed limits in school and high fatality zones that *checks notes* reduces the risk of deaths and ...
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    1 week ago

  • Oceans and Fisheries Minister to Solomons

    Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones is travelling to the Solomon Islands tomorrow for meetings with his counterparts from around the Pacific supporting collective management of the region’s fisheries. The 23rd Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Committee and the 5th Regional Fisheries Ministers’ Meeting in Honiara from 23 to 26 July ...
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  • Government launches Military Style Academy Pilot

    The Government today launched the Military Style Academy Pilot at Te Au rere a te Tonga Youth Justice residence in Palmerston North, an important part of the Government’s plan to crackdown on youth crime and getting youth offenders back on track, Minister for Children, Karen Chhour said today. “On the ...
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    1 day ago
  • Nine priority bridge replacements to get underway

    The Government has welcomed news the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has begun work to replace nine priority bridges across the country to ensure our state highway network remains resilient, reliable, and efficient for road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“Increasing productivity and economic growth is a key priority for the ...
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    2 days ago
  • Update on global IT outage

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  • New Zealand, Japan renew Pacific partnership

    New Zealand and Japan will continue to step up their shared engagement with the Pacific, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “New Zealand and Japan have a strong, shared interest in a free, open and stable Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.    “We are pleased to be finding more ways ...
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  • New infrastructure energises BOP forestry towns

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  • 'Pacific Futures'

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  • Delivering 24 hour pothole repairs

    Kiwis and freight operators will benefit from the Coalition Government delivering on its commitment to introduce targets that will ensure a greater number of potholes on our state highways are identified and fixed within 24 hours, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Increasing productivity to help rebuild our economy is a key ...
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    2 days ago
  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals

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    3 days ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan

    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
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    4 days ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset

    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
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    4 days ago
  • School attendance continues to increase

    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
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  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway

    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
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    4 days ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights

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  • Funding to support use of NZ Sign Language

    Seven projects have received government funding totalling nearly $250,000 to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). Initiatives that received an NZSL Board Community Grants this year include camps that support the use of NZSL through physical and sensory activities, and clubs where Deaf people and ...
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  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery

    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
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    5 days ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki

    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
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    5 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access

    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
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    5 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits

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    6 days ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston

    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
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    6 days ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety

    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
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  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship

    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
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  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality

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    7 days ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers

    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
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    7 days ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy

    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
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    1 week ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants

    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
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  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
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  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
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    1 week ago
  • District Court judges appointed

    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
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  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins

    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
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  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended

    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
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  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance

    New compliance funding in Budget 2024 will ensure Inland Revenue is better equipped to catch individuals who are evading their tax obligations, Revenue Minister Simon Watts says. “New Zealand’s tax debt had risen to almost $7.4 billion by the end of May, an increase of more than 50 per cent since 2022. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Taking action to reduce road cones

    The Coalition Government is taking action to reduce expenditure on road cones and temporary traffic management (TTM) while maintaining the safety of workers and road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  Rolling out a new risk-based approach to TTM that will reduce the number of road cones on our roads.  ...
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    1 week ago
  • Celebrating 100 years of progress

    Te Arawa Lakes Trust centenary celebrations mark a significant milestone for all the important work done for the lakes, the iwi and for the Bay of Plenty region, says Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka. The minister spoke at a commemorative event acknowledging 100 years ...
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    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan

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    1 week ago
  • Government creates MAG for retail crime victims

    The coalition Government is establishing a Ministerial Advisory Group for the victims of retail crime, as part of its plan to restore law and order, Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee says.  “New Zealand has seen an exponential growth in retail crime over the past five ...
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    1 week ago
  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open

    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says today is another important step towards establishing charter schools, with the application process officially opening.  “There has already been significant interest from groups and individuals interested in opening new charter schools or converting existing state schools to charter schools,” says Mr Seymour. “There is ...
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  • Decreasing gas reserves data highlights need to reverse oil and gas exploration ban

    MBIE’s annual Petroleum Reserves report detailing a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural gas reserves shows the need to reverse the oil and gas exploration ban, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says.“Figures released by MBIE show that there has been a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural ...
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    1 week ago
  • Providers of military assistance to Russia targeted in new sanctions

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further sanctions as part of the Government’s ongoing response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.    “Russia’s continued illegal war of aggression against Ukraine is a direct and shocking assault on the rules-based order. Our latest round of sanctions targets Russians involved in that ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • OECD report shows New Zealand is a red tape state

    Minister for Regulation David Seymour says that the OECD Product Market Regulation Indicators (PMRI) released this morning shows why New Zealanders sorely need regulatory reform. “This shocker result should end any and all doubt that the Government must go to war on red tape and regulation,” says Mr Seymour.  “The ...
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    2 weeks ago

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