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Write your own headline

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, December 20th, 2010 - 45 comments
Categories: brand key, john key, us politics - Tags:

I was amused by this headline in The Herald yesterday:

WikiLeaks: PM plays power games with President Obama

Wow! Sounds exciting doesn’t it? Power games! With Obama!! So what’s the story???

US Embassy staff were pressured to set a date for Prime Minister John Key to meet President Barack Obama – because media had already been told the meeting was on. …

The cable shows Key pushing for a firm meeting date with Obama after speaking with him at the 2009 APEC meeting in Singapore. “Key said the exchanges resulted in him briefing the press in a certain way about the `invitation’, which he said he would not have done if he had thought the offer were actually more casual and indefinite.

“Expectations in NZ were set, Key said, and the matter potentially could turn into a political embarrassment for him. Key noted that his June schedule was `still empty’.”

“Still empty” — how fitting. Stuff supplies more details:

Mr Key’s personal pitch is noted in the cable as a measure of the depth of New Zealand’s concern about the issue; it was the first time he had personally raised the issue himself, preferring previously to leave the discussions to Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully and his officials. …

The cable tallies with private briefings to journalists by senior National sources at the time; they were expecting Mr Key to make a separate visit to Washington sometime in the first half of the year. That appears to have been a factor in rising embarrassment that the trip had not come off, with Mr Key implying that he had been led astray by the Americans. …

The cable concludes: ” The manner in which PM Key pitched the bilateral visit indicated to the Ambassador that nailing down a June visit is of intense importance to Key.” …

While Prime Minister Helen Clark visited the White House twice, it has been decades since a National leader did so.

Reading these accounts I can’t help but think that the Herald headline tends to be a rather, shall we say “generous” interpretation of events. “Power games”? Key went personally begging for a photo op but the President of the US was too busy doing stuff that mattered. Yeah, I think I could have written a much more accurate headline for the piece. I’m sure you can too…

45 comments on “Write your own headline”

  1. Carol 1

    Well, even Stuff had a more accurate headline:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/4474659/Cable-reveals-Key-desperate-for-White-House-visit

    Cable reveals Key desperate for White House visit
    TRACY WATKINS AND PHILIP DORLING –
    Last updated 12:22 19/12/2010

  2. Descendant Of Smith 2

    Key doesn’t open Barack door.

  3. Jim Nald 3

    Thanks for giving us the opportunity to write headlines.
    My suggestions would be honest and direct .. but unpublishable.

  4. just saying 4

    Obama Takes Out A Restraining Order
    Kiwi PM Denies Stalking the President

  5. ‘Maybe I’ll see you in Hawaii’: Key puts on brave face over Obama snub

  6. After reading the detail rather than being able to be described as playing power games with Obama the only person Key could be accused of playing with is himself.

  7. Olwyn 7

    Key seeks photo with Obama for his “My Years as Prime Minister” album.

  8. ianmac from Prague 8

    PM Key Laughs at Adversity.
    Adversity shuns Key.

    • prism 8.1

      ianmac – How’s the weather?

      • ianmac from Prague 8.1.1

        Yesterday Sunday it was minus 8 during the day. Enough to make your nose drip and nearly freeze. Bracing. Now am Monday and warmer but OK light rain must have fallen last night. What fun. Imagine those who fought during wars out in the countryside. No heating eh!

  9. Damian 9

    Obama drops Key in toilet

  10. r0b 10

    “POTUS ignores antipodean gNat”

    “Key starts Obama fanboi club”

    “Obama: John who?”

    or perhaps the one that best represents the original article:
    “We love you John!”

  11. infused 11

    How about:

    “Clark bowed to sending Iraq troops for butter”

  12. Akldnut 12

    NZ PM The HONjKEY pursues the first black leader of America – to get a shot at him.

  13. felix 13

    Can’t think of one, laughing too much. I offer this instead: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pe-1j9tCMnM

  14. Pascal's bookie 14

    Key defriends Obama
    “I never really liked him anyway, and it’s totally his loss. He’s such an arsehole”

    • 😀

      I think you’ve captured the teenage-like infatuation perfectly, Pb.

      I have this mental picture of Key sitting at his desk with a set of felt markers and a piece of cardboard, making a “I<3 u Obama – call me!!!!" sign to hold at the White House fence, like a 13 year old girl on her way to a Justin Bieber concert.

  15. Mac1 15

    Key Gets the White House Blues

    “There’s a White House over yonder, that’s where Obama stays.
    There’s a White House over yonder, baby, that’s where Obama stays.
    Well, I ain’t been home to see Obama in about ninety nine and one half days.

    Wait a minute, something’s wrong. the Key won’t unlock the door.
    Wait a minute, something’s wrong, baby. the Key wont unlock the door.
    I got a bad, bad feeling that Obama won’t see me no more.

    I might as well go on back down, Go back ‘cross yonder down off the Hill.
    I might as well go back over yonder Way back yonder down off the Hill,
    ‘Cos if Obama don’t love me no more. I know Hawaii will!”

    Or, again
    “No Hawaii-a From Obama”

  16. ak 16

    Obama health scare avoided: “embarrassing minor irritant”
    Harmless rectal parasite excised, Hawaian health authorities alerted

  17. tea 17

    Key says that despite Obama snub they are still the same age

  18. Jeremy Harris 18

    OBAMA: Rejection you can believe in…

  19. burt 19

    Key finds Clark’s secret sucking up to US a hard act to follow.

  20. Irascible 20

    Key appeals to Obama as blatant lie to NZ media is exposed.

    “I told the Herald I had an appointment to sit at Obama’s feet when I didn’t.” confesses Key in exclusive interview with the Woman’s Weekly. “I’ve been learning to crawl ever since… it reminds me of my childhood as I moved from the log cabin on the Hawaiian hills to a state house in NZ… (woops – I got that myth wrong too…) {story continues from Key’s press secretary’s typewriter.}

  21. marsman 21

    Pathetic Pretend PM Pleads for President Pic

  22. Deadly_NZ 22

    Key “But he said he would meet me” tears rolling down his fat little face

  23. pointer 23

    Wasn’t this a Flight of the Conchords episode?

  24. Drakula 24

    PM JILTED “Remind me not to call Obama ever again” said the PM all down hearted and forelawn.

  25. Drakula 25

    OBAMA HAD A BIRTHDAY PARTY AT THE WHITE HOUSE AND POOR JOHNY WAS EXCLUDED!

  26. Pascal's bookie 26

    Can’t make it work, but remember this?

    I once bought an ice-cream for a girl called Fay
    But Roger the bully stole them both away.

    One day, you’ll be a big boy.

    But now that I’ve grown up,
    Look what I’ve got!
    It’s a Trumpet, Fay,
    And it’s made by Tip-Top!

    It’s got chocolate, and nuts, and flavours to try!
    It’s a treat for the big boys, I told her,
    And then, and then,
    Oh, Lordy! It’s Roger again!

    One day, Roger Finch! One day!

  27. john 27

    PM ON SUICIDE WATCH

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    The Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister and Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister, Kris Faafoi, has today announced the appointment of Tristan Gilbertson as the new Telecommunications Commissioner and member of the Commerce Commission. “Mr Gilbertson has considerable experience in the telecommunications industry and a strong reputation amongst his peers,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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