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Why Key’s opportunism was sickening

Written By: - Date published: 9:02 am, July 26th, 2011 - 55 comments
Categories: crime, Minister for Overseas Holidays - Tags:

The Right is whining that Key said “If [the Norway massacre] is an act of global terrorism, I think what it shows is no country large or small is immune from that risk and that’s why New Zealand’s played its part in Afghanistan” . ‘IF! Don’t you see, IF!’

Try to get the point, righties.

It’s not that he was wrong about who was behind the attack (although the kneejerk assumption that is must have been muslims from him and others is terrible). Not his language was conditional. Even if he had been right. Even the attack was Al Qaeda. Key would have been out of line and opportunistic.

He took this tragedy. Immediately tried to frame it in terms that served his domestic political purposes.

He tried to tell us what happened in Norway justified us being in Afghanistan. The conditional tense doesn’t matter. What was sickening was that the first thing he thought of when hearing of a terrorist attack was how to spin it to his advantage back home.

None of the other leaders did that. They all behaved with far more basic humanity.

On that note. A short memorial service is being held at 11.45 at Parliament today.


55 comments on “Why Key’s opportunism was sickening”

  1. higherstandard 1

    zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Zetetic

  2. Tigger 2

    DPF was running spin lines about this yesterday. Key gets a lot of credit for being smooth and likeable but see what happens when he’s not scripted or edited – we get this type of off the cuff shit Remember his smug silence during the Henry Governor General interview, his mincing, his non-memory of the Tour? His personal political weather vane isn’t very good. As soon as he deviates from the agreed script he fucks up, needing little worms like DPF to come and sweep up the broken china Key leaves in his wake.

    Worse, like the Paul Henry silence, this shows where Key’s head really is at. It’s not about compassion, it’s about any chance to brown nose men in power (in this case, Obama).

    • queenstfarmer 2.1

      Remember his smug silence during the Henry Governor General interview

      Well that’s clearly false. He could have given a sterner response, but the PM handled it better than Phil Goff’s light-hearted dismissal “I think that was Paul Henry being Paul Henry”. Yeah, he was just ‘avin a laff, eh Phil!

      • Tigger 2.1.1

        Phil Goff wasn’t there so you’re comparing apples and smug silence. And this isn’t about Goff, it’s about Key making hay off a tragedy.

        • queenstfarmer

          Phil Goff wasn’t there

          That’s right. Goff had time to make a considered response, yet gave a light-hearted quip instead.

      • mik e 2.1.2

        Key is the Prime Minister ie leader and should stand up against subtle racism like that, we are a multicultural society it offensive to us who are multicultural .so until you walk a mile in some one else foot steps don,t be an apologist for a smug pair like Key and Henry.The only reason Key didn,t speak out was Henry is a former National party candidate and now openly ACT supporter. thats Why he was on the show Henry has been ogling and hero worshiping Key for a long time.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    Key actually has no PR radar of his own – he needs briefing notes and scripts every step of the way because he is so disconnected.

    No doubt he would be smooth as silk, fitting right in to a room full of investment banking mates however.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 3.1

      au contaire mon frere

      His knowledge is completely dated and was related to easy pickings such as the the ‘carry trade’ in currency speculation. And his investment banking knowledge goes back to NZ in the 80s.
      Thats why he was pushed out at a fairly early age.
      The path is being prepared for Norris to enter on Nationals list, now that he has given up the job at Commonwealth Bank. Now theres a guy who actually ran the business ( including Air New Zealand)

  4. queenstfarmer 4

    Key would have been out of line and opportunistic.

    Whereas you were out of line and opportunistic.

    He took this tragedy. Immediately tried to frame it in terms that served his domestic political purposes.

    What rubbish. I seem to recall it was you who had your blog post up within mere hours of the tragedy. Stop digging.

    • freedom 4.1

      last time i looked, Zetetic was not our Prime Minister,

    • bbfloyd 4.2

      the only one digging here is you queeny… digging yourself into a hole.

      your apologist cant is as facile and transparent as a childrens story book..

      is it just my imagination, or are the morons backing keys obnoxious, ignorant bigotry showing a desperation not evident two years ago, and exposing a worrying lack of depth and intelligence?

    • Blue 4.3

      Stop whining.

      There is no way you can spin this to make what Key said okay. He should not have even mentioned Afghanistan or the role of NZ troops there at such a moment. It was totally inappropriate.

      The world was reacting to news of a horrible tragedy. The only thing to do was to express sorrow for that and then shut his mouth.

      What he said was designed to suck up to Obama, because the only thing the Yanks ever want to talk to us about is our role in Afghanistan, and Key thinks that he can get a free trade deal out of that.

      It was sickening political opportunism and you can try to spin it any which way you like, but it won’t change that.

      Key made a mistake. It happens. Get over it instead of trying to deny it.

      • Blue 4.3.1

        Of course Pinky you wouldn’t have critisised him if had said nothing would you? you would have thought great he’s acting like a Labour man – failing to be prepared.

    • felix 4.4

      Jesus queenstfarmer you can’t really be that fucking thick.

      He’s saying that Key WAS out of line AND wrong about the scary muslims, BUT EVEN if it HAD been scary muslims he would STILL have been out of line.

      Sheesh, learn to read you moron. The trouble with these right-wingers is half of them genuinely don’t know what we’re talking about most of the time because their comprehension skills are so limited by their lack of education and experience, and the other half of them pretend not to understand because it’s more convenient for them to do so than to have the discussion.

  5. Craig Glen Eden 5

    “Whereas you were out of line and opportunistic.”

    Argh dosnt quite work Queen street, infact its a pretty bad attempt at covering for your beloved PM Keys.

    Zetetic has simply stated what Key did. Zetic didnt make shit up.

  6. Deb 6

    So if Key was according to you capitalising on tragedy to score political points, what was Goff doing about the Israeli briefing/non-briefing situation. Remember that 3 young and probably innocent Israeli kids were tragically killed here too.

    You’ve opened yourself up to the “he said, she said, we’re perfect, you’re rotten” type of circular argument. Applying any sort of morality guidelines to this low level example of politicians politicking (your opinion) is disingenuous imho. Polticking is what they all do to a greater or lesser degree and I might add it’s what you do and what I do.

    • freedom 6.1

      Key said blah blah, Goff was asked if blah blah was accurate, Goff said no
      what is your issue?
      It is called responding to a question, or is the Opposition not allowed to do that now?

      • Pete George 6.1.1

        You’d expect that the Opposition leader would at least be sure of his facts before he responds with criticism of the PM and the head of the SIS.

        • freedom

          Mr George Squirreltail you can live your lie of selective memory or engage as an adult and admit the PM’s statements regarding the briefing of the Leader of the Opposition was innaccurate. It was reported widely, repeatedly and from his own lips that Goff had been fully briefed. This is blatantly incorrect and the PM must be held to account for this breach in basic protocol that we have engaged in throughout numerous Security issues in our history.

          I can only imagine the furor if the roles in this had been reversed

          I am also adding Pete George/Secret Squirrel to the list of people i will no longer bother to read as the conscious derailment of discussion is pointless, wastes everybody’s time and there are far more important things to do than argue incidental nuances when the very future of free and open democracy is resting on the block.

          so well done you manged to successfully alienate another person in your life.

          ( i now await with wide-eyed wonder what his next handle will be )

          • Pete George

            Have you got something different to this?

            GUYON Did you brief Phil Goff?

            JOHN Phil Goff was briefed, yeah, that’s right. I personally didn’t brief him, but my understanding from the director of SIS, Warren Tucker, is that he was briefed and he was shown the same note and report that I saw.

            If not it’s you that’s incorrect.

    • Craig Glen Eden 6.2

      Shit the right wingers are getting more and more desperate. Was what Goff said true…………. was what Key said true………………. right so theirs the difference Deb. Goff hadn’t been briefed which he should have been thats normal protocol Key claimed he wouldn’t answer questions because it was not in the public/ National interest, if that was the case Goff should have been briefed, but he hadnt been.

      Did 68 young Labour people loose their lives because of terrorism, no, did it have anything to do with Afghanistan and our troops no. So don’t try and compare the two because they are nothing the like . Key stuffed up again because he is a half wit.

      • Pete George 6.2.1

        Goff hadn’t been briefed

        Goff now accepts that he had been briefed by the SIS.

        “”The head of the SIS said he flicked the issue past me and said there wasn’t much to it. If there had been anything of substance said to me, I’m sure I would recollect it.”

        • The Voice of Reason

          “Goff now accepts that he had been briefed by the SIS”
          Can you back that up with a quote, Pete? The one you use doesn’t say anything of the sort.

          • Pete George

            Ok, so he either accepts he was briefed as he has indicated in the quote, or he privately thinks Tucker is lying.

            • The Voice of Reason

              Er, no. He doesn’t say anything about being briefed in the quote you supplied. In fact, he says the issue was ‘flicked past’ him, which is not a briefing.
              So do you have a quote in which he acknowleges being briefed or not?

            • Ianupnorth

              A briefing is generally accompanied by a piece of paper. I am sure gentleman John will be  typing away furiously…

          • freedom

            today is a fine example of the reason you do not argue politics with diseased marshmallows.

            across many blogs and in almost every thread, i have read today of the willing ignorance expressed by SquirrelBrain et al when they choose to ignore the real and implied meaning of words to support certain Politicians in one instance then use the inverse of that logic to defame another. There is a fine word to describe this activity, tedious

            NZ is at another crtical stage of its future development as a Nation. If the wrong motives are returned to power we are doomed. This is not meant to imply we are spoilt for choice either as the hard realities of the Global crises show in stark relief the inequality on our planet. It is important to remember that remedies exist. The first step is honest discussion. On politics, on medicine, on food, on war, we occupy the halls of the blame game, hearing nothing due to the overpowering noise from the room next door.

            There is an elephant in the room that is getting very very angry at the fact is has been noticed. An angry elephant is not a good thing. When the room it is in houses all you hold so dear, it might be an idea to let it out. Show it some sunshine, let it see all the people it could do so much good for.

            This elephant that we call the free market does not work due to a complete lack of commercial integrity that premeates every fabric of our lives. If it worked why do we have 2.5 billion people without adequate food, water and shelter? Why are over 4 billion people living at or below the poverty level? Why does approximately 0.01% of its population own over 80% of the world’s wealth?

            Change occurs when an individual has the temerity to accept the negative impact of their own contribution and alter their behaviour accordingly. Be it in a blog or at the ballot box.

        • Anne

          Goff now accepts that he had been briefed by the SIS.

          Bullshit! Goff said nothing of the sort.

          If there had been anything of substance said to me, I’m sure I would recollect it.

          If Goff – remember we’re talking about the former Defence and Foreign Affairs minister at the time of the Israeli passport scandal – doesn’t recollect anything it’s because he was told nothing of note. In other words he received a Clayton’s briefing. That is, a briefing you get when you’re not being briefed. An insult to Goff and I understand why he is angry about it.

          This pratt Pete G was whining non-stop about this yesterday. He got all the responses he needed to pass an informed judgement. Please, please someone toss him back to Kiwiblog from whence he came.

          • Pete George

            doesn’t recollect anything it’s because he was told nothing of note

            That’s because apparently there was nothing much of note to tell, and nothing of note to remember.

            The Israeli story seems to have been much ado about bugger all, and so have the attempts to make political stories out of it.

            • Deadly_NZ

              Pete George Secret Squirrel or whatever else you want to try to hide behind. I think Anne put it succinctly enough, but I’ll take the round about route, so if you are so brain dead as to still attempt to fight yet another losing battle. May I diffidently offer you 2 words, Sex Travel.

          • Tangled up in blue

            Unfortunately for Goff, it looks like that it’s his word against the SIS Director.

            • Deadly_NZ

              Surely not. If he (Phil Goff) had an official briefing then would there, or would there not, be about 2 trees worth of paper signifying the fact? After all it ‘s An Official briefing, so there should be paperwork. And why did the sis man not get a signature??

      • Deb 6.2.2

        What are you on about when you say – ” Did 68 young Labour people loose their lives because of terrorism, no” Of course the people lost their lives to terrorism Craig. The alleged murderer is Norway’s very own homegrown terrorist. You’re not suggesting that only Islamist fundamentalists can be terrorists are you?

      • queenstfarmer 6.2.3

        Did 68 young Labour people loose their lives because of terrorism, no

        Um, yes.

        • Craig Glen Eden

          No I was not suggesting Terrorists only come from Islamic fundamentalism, but I was saying that this man had nothing to do with terrorists in Afghanistan as Key was first suggesting.
          Also our troops in Afghanistan would not have prevent this mass murder as Key was suggesting.But I guess I could have said it better, so as not to have given you a another smoke screen to hide behind. So back to the issue Did Key use this event for his own politicking.

          Im just waiting for Key to know extend our SAS time in Afghanistan which is what I think he was primming us for.

          • freedom

            Maybe he will do what Obama has just done. Announce the complete withdrawl of all troops…. except the fifteen thousand he is retasking as Diplomats. No joke. go look it up .

      • seanmaitland 6.2.4

        Lol – desperate – you’ve just had your worst poll ever, and your leader has been caught out making false allegations against the head of the SIS.

        Fucking hilarious mate. Yep thats definitely desperate.

        • Colonial Viper

          Meh, NAT is winning the polling game purely based on smoke and mirrors.

          And you are supporting a side selling out NZ to foreigners.

          Don’t gloat about it, you’re hurting your friends, your neighbours and the future of your family.


  7. Jason 7

    No, he is not alone, Obama did the exact same thing. All of the top level politicians are globalist puppets singing from the same song sheet and controlled by the same puppet masters:

    “But earlier in the day, just hours after the bomb exploded in Oslo and long before authorities there captured the alleged gunman, President Barack Obama had said the events in Norway are a reminder that stopping terrorism is a global responsibility.

    “I wanted to personally extend my condolences to the people of Norway,” Obama said at the White House after meeting with New Zealand Prime Minister John Key. “It’s a reminder that the entire international community holds a stake in preventing this kind of terror from occurring. We have to work cooperatively together both on intelligence and in terms of prevention of these kinds of horrible attacks.”

    • “preventing this kind of terror from occurring”

      Yes, this was also opportunistic but note the – clever – non-committal nature of what ‘this kind of terror’ might turn out to be? Key specified a link to an action supposedly aimed at stopping a quite different and specific kind of terrorist threat (and, for now and for the sake of argument, I won’t debate whether the action in Afghanistan is actually about ‘stopping terrorism’ in any of its guises). 

    • Tangled up in blue 7.2

      Yes but Obama had the common sense to mention stopping terrorism is a general way without specifically bringing up the political issue of troops in Afghanistan.

    • Ianupnorth 7.3

      Watch – does Obama once mention or apportion blame 

      We have to work cooperatively together both on intelligence and in terms of prevention of these kinds of horrible attacks.

      E.g. the Norwegians talking to the Poles about the 6 tonnes of fertiliser that were used to make the bomb.

      Not once does the president mention any other country than Norway; key on the other hand….

  8. Bart 8

    So now you ARE accepting that he said “If” but you are still trying to spin this!

    Depite the agenda of the perpetrator, we still have to take our place in the world, and we still have to contribute. And while you are at it, why has everyone conveniently forgotton that NZ forces went in to Afghanistan under a Labour government?

    • jackal 8.1

      So that is your argument eh! That Zetetic initially left out the word if. How god damn pathetic is that. The qualifying statement had nothing to do with John Key using the word if.

      Then you jump on the “Labour did it” bandwagon to try and justify National’s idiotic leader.

      Do you really think that such an argument is going to carry the right wing over the line in the next general election? “National is fucking the country up like never before, but because Phil Goff farted back in 1973 it’s a OK.”

      Contributing to the world stage is a bit different to propping up a failed war for oil that has killed millions of innocent civilians and increased New Zealand’s chances at being the victim of terrorism.

      Let’s export top quality products, support culture and ensure people are leaving New Zealand instead of escaping. Let’s not send badly trained army personnel to kill and be killed in foreign lands.

  9. Bart 9

    @ Jackal. How dare you cast aspersions on our people in Afghanistan. In every case where our people have fired on insurgents, they have returned fire, not initiated combat. As for our Provincial Reconstruction Team, there is a reason that Bamiyan Province is held up as a model for other PRT’s to emulate.

    But you want to pull our people out, and leave the civilian population of Afghanistan at the mercy of thugs who hang 8 year old boys!


    • jackal 9.1

      The Bush administration began its bombing strikes on the hapless, poverty-stricken country October 7, and ground attacks by US Special Forces began October 19.

      But the US planned to undertake the war on Afghanistan well before the terrorist attacks of September 11 that destroyed some of New York and the Pentagon.

      Make no mistake, America is undertaking a war for oil, and have undertaken a systematic cover-up in conjunction with many media outlets of the real economic and strategic interests that underlie the war.

      Afghanistan has been subjected to a barbarous air bombardment which kills around 50 civilians per day. So yes! I will cast aspersions on New Zealand’s involvement in an unjust war.

  10. randal 10

    Unfortunartely the limit of John Keys knowledge is the current bond yield rate.
    Anything else is manufactured by the manques in the policy unit who are so blinded by the possibility of getting shares in the privatised soe’s that they cant see the wood from the trees.
    they are just arrivistes anyway with no real knowledge of the world and furthermore they dont care.

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  • Government must be more than a bystander on the economy
    Despite what he might think John Key is not a political commentator, but actually a leader in a Government who needs to take responsibility for the conditions that mean a rise in interest rates, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “John ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Māori Party all hui no-doey on housing
    The Māori Party should stop tinkering and start fixing tragic Māori housing statistics in the face of a national housing crisis, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesman Kelvin Davis. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Labour committed to eliminating child poverty
    Labour accepts the challenge from Children’s Commissioner Andrew Becroft to cut child poverty and calls on the Prime Minister to do the same, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    3 weeks ago