Your chance to ask the PM some real questions

Written By: - Date published: 12:41 am, December 1st, 2010 - 133 comments
Categories: accountability, john key, Media - Tags: ,

To say that Key’s digital smile and wave was disappointing would be an under-statement. Key spent just 45 minutes (not the promised 2 hours) answering questions and most of them were moronic  – “ford or holden”, “favourite colour” – honestly. We’re getting emails from people pissed off their serious questions weren’t sent through.

I don’t know if it was part of the deal that Vernon Small had to let through 2 soft questions for every serious one (and edit down the serious ones, according to one irate emailer), or if Key’s office had supplied a series of soft questions in advance. But I hope it was the latter – because that means people weren’t really using their one chance to directly question the PM to ask “Do you perfer [sic] normal chips or kumara chips?” and Small wasn’t choosing to put that kind of question to Key instead of questions that, for instance, weren’t fucken stupid.

But I have a solution.

Write your question for Key in comments on this post.

We’ll pile them all together and send them to the PM for answer.

If they are OIA-type (eg. how many jobs has the cycleway created) then we’ll make them into OIAs.

We’ll see if Key can take time out of his busy schedule – which he describes as “Monday to Friday is very limited downtime if any” but mysteriously allows him to avidly watch “Biggest Loser, Desperate Housewives when it’s on, and Grey’s Anatomy” – to answer some serious questions from the people he represents.

133 comments on “Your chance to ask the PM some real questions”

  1. john k 1

    Hi John is it true your totally insane?thanks John Kobain

  2. handle 2

    Explain how cutting government spending addresses this nation’s high level of private sector debt. (captcha: owes)

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    How many cycleway labouring jobs will be made available for sickness and invalids beneficiaries reclassified as being able to work?

    • burt 3.1

      OMG, please John don’t encourage people back into work, they may stop voting for increased welfare if you do that.

    • swimmer 3.2

      I personally don’t think that invalids ought to be made to work at all.

      • swimmer 3.2.1

        And I hardly think that labouring is an appropriate activity for someone who is physically compromised.

        • Rob 3.2.1.1

          Most people on the invalids beneficiary list are not physically disabled e.g. in a wheelchair as it is not that hard to find such people jobs. The more at issue invalid beneficiaries are those with mental illness or mental handicap who have great difficulty maintaining work relationships or simply being able to cope with the stress of a normal workplace. Doing a cycleway job for a few months would possibly of benefit for them to feel like they are contributing but it could hardly be something mandatory as that does not take assessment of how helpful for them it would be. To me this question highlights their general employability especially those on the borderline who may be declassified. Perhaps having required quota’s to be filled by people with disability issues in government positions could be a way of solving this issue so they don’t suffer the usual problem of having an employer unwilling to assist them with any issues they might have so they are as good an employee as any other. Of course as felix said the answer to it will be none.

          • swimmer 3.2.1.1.1

            How about auto immune diseases, such as ones that attack the vital organs? There are many illnesses where physical exertion can actually accelerate the disease process. There are also illnesses that cause great fatigue and even blackouts. I\’m sorry, but you don\’t know what you\’re talking about or what it\’s like to have to do even simple day to day tasks under great duress.

            If a person is on the invalids benefit because of physical illness, then they have been deemed unfit for work, and manual labour would be cruel for these people.

            • Rob 3.2.1.1.1.1

              The majority of work in the work environment is not physical these days. Deeming them entirely unfit for all work is cruel and the reason why some have literally hundreds of jobs decline them when they do want to find work because they think them unable to do anything. I have two close relatives who are on invalids benefits (although not in NZ) and am well aware that there are severe restrictions on their ability to work (one of which is actually an auto-immune deficiency) but that does not mean they are not able from time to time to do some work at levels they are comfortable with.

              I am not disputing there are illnesses that make you unable to do physical work merely that this is the majority of the issue and while nobody wants to see people with disabilities forced into work doing so within your limits is good for you and the employment market is stacked against them meaning when the cuts happen to push people off beneficiary lists there will be nowhere for them to go even in periods of relatively low unemployment.

              • swimmer

                I think you’re talking about something else, discrimination. I agree with you that if somebody desperately wants to work or go into training that they should have that opportunity available to them.

                My chief objection was to the idea that invalids should be given manual labour on the cycle ways. I would point out, however, that the work itself doesn’t have to be “physical” in order to make a physically ill person feel worn out and in pain. I too know people on the invalids benefit and feel strongly that no one who is on this benefit should be made to work as they have the right to manage their conditions and have as much rest as they need.

                I would also suggest that there are people worse off than your relatives on this benefit and that they don’t need the stress of being told that it would be “good for them” to work. That’s between them and their doctor. It’s not practical for say someone whose body is calcifying to be expected to work. Some people could work with a reduction in their quality of life.

                People already have the option of working on the invalids benefit. I think those who don’t are entitled to make that choice.

                • Rob

                  “How many cycleway labouring jobs will be made available for sickness and invalids beneficiaries reclassified as being able to work?”

                  The whole point of the question to me epitomises the inherent discrimination these people face and that they can’t simply go and get a job like everyone else can hence the need to make jobs available specifically for them. I’m not saying they need to be told it is good for them to work I am saying they should have an equal opportunity to do so which they do not.

                  I agree work does not have to be physical to make a person feel worn out. Mental stress is far more of an issue in work place environments and physically labouring jobs are typically lower stress and would thus be more suitable for those who are likely to be declassified if National starts cutting people off invalid lists.

                  At any rate this was probably not meant to highlight they need jobs on the cycleway specifically but that they are going to need jobs somewhere if you take their income away from them when they are disabled.

                  • swimmer

                    I don’t think that labouring jobs would necessarily be any less mentally stressful for a person. Stress comes in many forms.

                    People who are disabled who want to work do have a tougher time getting into work. I saw a great story on Attitude which showed a young man with Downs Syndrome who had a good job. I think society is slowly becoming more inclusive.

  4. bobo 4

    Why weren’t you at the Lt O’Donnell memorial on tuesday Mr Key ?
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/4405855/Lt-O-Donnells-name-added-to-memorial

    and under that headline link reads:
    “PM John Key: Kumara chips to currency”

    I guess you had a full schedule…

  5. Josh 5

    Hey John: in your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, do you or your office have any information relating to the use of the Waihopai spybase for spying against the UN?

    In your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, do you have any information relating to the participation of the Waihopai spybase in the ECHELON network?

    In your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, do you have any information relating to the participation of the GCSB in the UKUSA agreement post 1956?
    (only information from 1945-1956 has been currently published regarding the UKUSA agreement currently)

    In your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, do you have any information relating to the proposed merger of the GCSB and the SIS, or the GCSB with any other Government agencies, including but not limited to, the impact this may have on the GCSB/Waihopai spybase on the domestic targets for interception?
    (the GCSB is currently only allowed to spy on nondomestic targets, but if merged with government agencies which don’t have this requirement (as leaked as proposed last year) will it still remain?)

    In your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, as far as you are aware, has any information provided by the GCSB been passed on to private companies for commercial benefit, and if so, when has this happened?

    In your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, as far as you are aware, has any information provided by the GCSB been used in negotiating any trade deals with foreign governments, and if so, when has this information been used?
    (commercial espionage has been said to be the reason for maintaining these type of facilities post cold war, as in spying on foreign companies or governments to steal their technology or find out what the highest a foreign country will go in a trade deal)

    In your responsibility as minister responsibility of the GCSB, what satellites have the satellite dishes at GCSB Waihopai been pointed at over the last five years? (aka: what satellites are we spying on?)

    The GCSB is extremely secretive, so I imagine you won’t get any answers from these. Here’s one a bit easier.

    How many students will be rendered ineligible for a student loan or student allowance due to failing courses before 2009?

  6. Irascible 6

    Can you explain why Pansy Wong and her husband have disappeared from public view following revelations of misuse of parliamentary privileges to assist their private business interests and why you have not insisted on her being transparent and accountable as you campaigned on as being the hallmark of your government?
    Why, too, are you not insisting on the Minister of Agriculture being held to account for using his ministerial rank to act in a manner which would benefit his own pecuniary interests?

  7. Maynard J 7

    What was the criteria you used to decide that the people who voted Richard Worth in, and paid his salary, did not deserve to know the reasons behind his dismissal?

    How does that reconcile with your pledge for an open and accountable government?

  8. vto 8

    I would like the rather large question raised about the fact that banks are too big too fail and are not a normal business because it has needed and does need state support to be asked. It is on the open mike 30/11 post.

    Not quite sure how it could be worded. Perhaps ask him, given his deal-making noggin, where the cost benefit is for the taxpayer? Because all I see is cost and no benefit for the taxpayer (no confusion of taxpayers as depositors either).

  9. vto 9

    Another one: “Mr Key, it seems clear that the mining industry is unable to operate safe mines within DOC land. Does it not make sense therefore to not allow the mining industry to operate wthin DOC land given they have proved themselves incapable?”

    Of course such a question is a bit premature …

    • grumpy 9.1

      …or….What is it about DoC land that makes it so much more dangerous to mine than other land….?

      FFS

  10. Pascal's bookie 10

    Last week we passed a milestone in Afghanistan. The NATO led mission there is now longer lasting than the failed Soviet mission. The current plan is to wait till 2014 and see how things look. This new plan replaces the 2009 plan to wait until 2011 and see how things look.

    At what point do you think we should bring our troops home?

  11. Pascal's bookie 11

    In the National Party’s agreement with ACT over confidence and supply (pge 3, linked below), the following clause raises a few questions:

    To enable ACT to make a substantive contribution to the government’s programme, it will have adequate access to funding, in a bulk form or for specific projects, to enable it to commission contract research or other consultancy assistance. Te terms of such funding will be a matter for the Leadership Council to decide.

    How much funding is meant by ‘adequate’?

    Is this funding from the Crown or this a private arrangement between the National Party and ACT using funds of the National Paty?

    If the former, where does this funding come from? (eg, Parliamentary services, Ministerial services)

    If it is funded by the taxpayer, how much has the taxpayer so far spent on funding policy development for the ACT party?

    http://www.national.org.nz/files/agreements/National-Act_Agreement.pdf

  12. Craig Glen Eden 12

    Mr Key in the 2009 election you promised the NZ public 400 extra nurses in the public health system.

    When will these nurses be employed and where given that no workforce planning in 2009 identified the need for 400 nurses?

  13. Bright Red 13

    you’re damn right I was pissed that Small edited this down to make it softer:

    “In February last year, you promised to construct a national cycleway the length of New Zealand, creating 4,000 for $50 million within two years. How much cycleway has been built and how many jobs created?”

  14. MrSmith 14

    Dear John: As the minister of tourism what have you done for the industry apart from getting us a pit part at the end of the Hobbit DVD.

  15. Peter G 15

    Dear Mr Key,

    How does a policy that increases the cost of Early Childhood Education move us closer to Australia ?

  16. Pascal's bookie 16

    International agreements against torture require that signatories investigate, with a view towards prosecution, all credible allegations of torture commited by or against their citizens as well as allegations of torture commited in territory they control.

    Is this an issue that NZ discusses with all foreign governments that we feel may not be living up to their legal obligations in this regard?

    If not why not?

  17. Have you read this? http://oilcrash.com/articles/wake_up2.htm
    Introduction

    The US Department of Energy (DoE) calls oil “the lifeblood of modern civilisation”. 1 Around 86 million barrels (13.7 billion litres) are consumed each day. Oil supplies 37 percent of the world’s energy demand, 2 including 40 percent of New Zealand’s energy demand. 3 It powers nearly all of the world’s transportation, without which production and trade would grind to a halt. Studies have shown that GDP growth is very strongly related to increased use of oil. 4

    When the price of oil increases, the cost of nearly all economic activity rises. This often induces recessions. High oil prices have been associated with three major periods of economic recession in the past 40 years, including the lead-up to the recent global economic crisis. 5

    The world’s oil production capacity may not be sufficient to match growing demand in coming years. The potential for short-falls arises from geological, infrastructure, and political/economic constraints limiting the ability of world oil production capacity to grow while demand continues to rise. If oil supply cannot meet demand a price spike may be triggered, with major detrimental effects on economies, especially those heavily dependent on oil imports like New Zealand.

    ….. sorry for the long past.

  18. ghostwhowalksnz 18

    PM were you living in your property in Peak Rd Waimakau at the time you enrolled in the Helensville electorate ?

  19. Despite frequent rhetoric about moving resources towards the front-line/counter at the expense of the bureaucrats, why then has your own department seen a significant increase in the number of salaried personnel remunerated at a salary greater than $100k per annum?

  20. BLiP 20

    What advice was Cabinet and/or individual Ministers given by the Minister for Agriculture in relation to trade implications vis a vis the sechita method of slaughter?

  21. Muzza 21

    Does the government intend to give effect to the recommendations of the Maori Economic Taskforce?

    Has the government come under intense lobbying from the private prison industry?

    How does the government expect to reduce the number of people on the unemployment benefit given the absence of jobs? Does this government have a full employment policy or does it intend those it moves off the unemployment benefit to live on the streets – with their families?

    Does the Prime Minister value the role of a mother in the life of her child? If so why has he signalled that he prefers to reduce the amount of time mothers are able to spend with their child through changes to the DPB that would force mothers into work earlier? Especially when that work does not exist.

    Does the Government have a job creation policy the public does not know about?

    Does the government’s definition of “efficient justice” include the demolition of the few remaining fundamental common law principles such as the penal presumption?

  22. higherstandard 22

    “Why haven’t you bothered to answer any questions submitted by the standard blog site ?”

    To be submitted a month after no response has been received from the PMs office.

    • Marty G 22.1

      there is an expectation and practice that mps will respond to correspondence from the public that isn’t just batshit crazy.

      • higherstandard 22.1.1

        You should have a chat to Lynn about the response to questions posed prior to the election.

        If there is a response it’ll be along the lines of…….. ‘ the government will respond to questions from the opposition in the house not via their various pseudonyms and employees on a labour funded blog site.”

        • OleOlebiscuitBarrell 22.1.1.1

          I don’t think even Eddie has enough lack of self awareness to believe that the Prime Minister has nothing better to do than address the infantile wailing of a bunch of self-important teenagers.

          • billy fish 22.1.1.1.1

            Ah but if a couple of good questions are added to this list then they may find themselves into a forum where they may need to be answered.
            (and before the statement gets slagged its a valid idea for left or right)

        • lprent 22.1.1.2

          That is probably the crap line that they’d use despite all evidence to the contrary. Bill English is still a total f*ckwit in my books for saying that this site was run by Labour back in early 2008.

          Pissed me off because until we started taking donations via paypal last year, I’d paid all money expenses. It was only after putting advertising on the site early this year that I stopped paying at all. Bill English is a lying arsehole – but we knew that already.

          I don’t know of any MP’s writing here under a pseudonym, never has been, and I do check for it periodically. As for ’employees’, this site isn’t run by Labour and like all employers they don’t control what people do in their spare time. This is a site run by people in their spare time and I doubt that most of them bother to tell their employers what they’re doing. It could be a bit dangerous for employees of Labour bearing in mind some of the cogent criticism that Labour gets here from both authors and commentators. But I’m neither going to confirm or deny – just read the opinions because smearing is a rather stupid short-term policy of Nationals.

          Of course there are commentators that are probably doing it as part of their jobs. And I’ve always had my suspicions that you are one of them. But what of it? People are entitled to have their opinions and for every person doing it as part of their work there would be thousands who aren’t. You’d have to wonder what in the hell the Nats are scared of. But they have always seemed to me to be quite wimpy.

          BTW: It was notable that from memory, National was the only party that didn’t respond to questions asked in that series of posts in 2008. I’ve always been amused by Nationals trait of only going for ‘soft’ interviews where they can control the questions asked. You have to wonder what exactly they’re trying to hide. Their policies or the incompetence of their people?

          • higherstandard 22.1.1.2.1

            You’ve had suspicions I’m paid to comment on this blog………. if anyone’s actually paid to comment on this blog NZ’s a lot more f…d up than I thought.

            An occasional break from the day is my excuse to post and bait.

            • lprent 22.1.1.2.1.1

              It was the tenacity with which you hung off the troll statements in your previous incanation. And then slowly dropped into making them. Usually people don’t bother, they will head somewhere where they are more engaged in the conversation.

              Looked a lot like either self abuse or duty

          • Gosman 22.1.1.2.2

            Fair enough about this blog and I can see why you get irate at unfounded allegations about the regular blog contributors.

            That stated there does seem to be an inclination of throwing out similar allegations at right leaning blogs without any justification.

            If you don’t like people making baseless allegations against The standard then I suggest you don’t allow the same against other blogs least you don’t mind being called hypocrites.

            • Lanthanide 22.1.1.2.2.1

              “That stated there does seem to be an inclination of throwing out similar allegations at right leaning blogs without any justification.”
              I strongly agree.

              Also the repeated comments here about xyz person being paid by the Nat’s, or having the latest spin lines fed to them by the Nat’s are pretty juvenile/desperate.

              • felix

                Do you think nobody here is being paid to disseminate/being fed lines by the Nat spin doctors and the NPRU?

                Bit naive, Lanth.

                • Lanthanide

                  If such a thing happens, I’m pretty confident it happens a lot less than the number of allegations that are levelled at people saying they are doing it. I mean really, how does the cost/benefit analysis stack up? This blog really doesn’t have that wide an audience, and you’re not going to convince many people here about what you’re saying anyway. Better to try a place like whaleoil and kiwiblog, where you can sow your seed in fertile minds, than bother scratching in the dirt here.

                  I’ve been accused of astroturfing before (not around here), when I was simply very passionate about the subject at hand.

                  • felix

                    I never said that PR people are paid to do nothing but type comments on this site though, did I?

                    • Lanthanide

                      Did I say that you said that?

                    • felix

                      Lanth: “I mean really, how does the cost/benefit analysis stack up? This blog really doesn’t have that wide an audience, and you’re not going to convince many people here about what you’re saying anyway.

                      That’s the bit I was responding to. Having PR people type comments on any one blog probably doesn’t stack up very well in a C/B analysis, but as part of a wider communications strategy of course PR people are doing this.

                  • lprent

                    One of the things that surprises people is when I tell them how much influence this site has amongst the political media. They don’t link to it, mostly don’t comment on it, but do read it – including the comments. But directly and indirectly that is what comes back to us from both the media and people who talk to them. It helps in framing the debate amongst the centre and the left. Doing circular repetitive partisan arguments with the RWNJ’s just bores the tears out of everyone.

                    One of the amusing things to me is that some of the journos and politicians actually know the handles of many of the commentators here.

            • lprent 22.1.1.2.2.2

              The difference is that generally our ‘allegations’ about other blogs are either expressed as a personal opinion or are based on directly on facts that the recipients have publicized. There is a clear attempt in the posts by authors on this site to not report as fact anything that isn’t, to link to material that others can examine, and to clearly separate opinion from fact. It takes work.

              The irritation I feel is not because of the opinions of people about this site – I really couldn’t be bothered about those. It is because they make assertions of ‘fact’ about the site when there is nothing to back up those claims apart from the type of logic that makes astrology look sane.

              Mostly of course that is Whaleoil who really doesn’t seem to think that the truth is nearly as interesting as making crap up. Which is what he routinely does about this site and various people that he doesn’t like. I saw the other day he was saying that we have a policy not to link to his site. We don’t – nearest we have to it is some moderation restrictions on people dropping links in comments to his site in link-whore sweeps. It is simply that there is so seldom any actual fact on his site that authors don’t bother to link there.

              But my opinion and probably of most of the authors also applies to the various lazy f*ckwits who then re-report the bullshit about this site as being fact. For instance several at No Minister like BB and Adolf, and of course David Farrar. In other words as far as I’m concerned they are knowingly lying because they are unskeptically repeating information that they are quite well aware is likely to be as dodgy as hell and where they have no corroboration.

              I have little respect or hesitation in expressing my opinion of people who act like that simply because it makes for a convenient story that suits their purposes. If they’d lie about this site for convenience then I assume they’ll lie about anything.

  23. During your role as a Prime Minister and a government MP you frequently have to sign off on decisions which you know will cause peoples deaths as a balance against the economy such as the mooted changes to air quality regulations that Nick Smith is considering. How does this affect you as a person?

  24. kriswgtn 24

    Mr Key

    Why were your**shares** in the vineyard sold after declaring you didnt know what is in your blind trust

    Who sold them and on whose advice were these sold?

    • Lanthanide 24.1

      Easy to answer that one:
      The trustees of the blind trust, and I don’t know on whose advice they were sold as the trust is at arms length to myself.

  25. Rosy 25

    How many high-cost, high-efficacy drugs had delayed sign-off from Pharmac due to your decision that herceptin to bypass the Pharmac approvals process? How many patients were affected by this decision? How was Pharmac’s budget affected?

  26. PC Brigadier 26

    At the beginning of 2009 you convened a Jobs Summit. Can you provide specific examples of jobs created that are attributed to that summit?

  27. big bruv 27

    When will you start really doing something about the thousands of bludgers who choose not to work for a living, and, when will you do away with the DPB?

    On a positive note Mr Key, I do thank you for thoroughly hammering Labour and getting rid of the corrupt Helen Clark at the last election, the people of NZ will continue to support you for that.

    • Colonial Viper 27.1

      the thousands of bludgers who choose not to work for a living

      When will your Government show the leadership necessary to provide jobs to the 160,000-170,000 unemployed NZ’ers who desperately want real employment right this minute, so that we can begin focussing on the few thousand dole bludgers that big bruv is so concerned about?

    • millsy 27.2

      Hey big bruv, one for you – are you going to take in single mothers thrown out of their homes as a result of the axing of the DBP that you desire?

    • Does that include the thousand who lined up for a couple of low paid work at a supermarket recently.

    • Maynard J 27.4

      What would you ‘do’ with them bruv? Turf them on to the streets? Gas them? Sterilise?

      Go on, tell us wot’s wot, you wee authoritarian fascist you.

  28. PC Brigadier 28

    Your predecessor Don Brash recently claimed that Maori are given special treatment by your government. Do you agree with this staement, why/why not?

  29. billy fish 29

    Prime Minister, in your Stuff Q & A you were asked about the logic of borrowing money to provide Chunky tax cuts to the wealthy.
    Your reponse indicated that more money flowing into the economy would help us all.
    Can you provide proof that ALL of the $12,000 that you receive from the cuts will be spent in NZ?

    Following your logic would it not be emminantly more sensible to provide a greater tax cut to the lower / middle income who have no choice but to spend that money in NZ and usually on nescessities.

  30. millsy 30

    Mr Key,

    Do you accept that the options proprosed by the welfare working group, combined with any changes to the ACC system, and the recent changes to emplyment law would create insecurity, hardship, and homelessness to scale never seen before in this country since perhaps the Great Depression?

  31. Armchair Critic 31

    What is the total cost of the reorganisation of local government in Auckland?
    How does this compare to the initial estimated cost?
    What reasons are there for the difference?
    What cost savings have resulted from reorganising local government in Auckland?
    How have these cost savings been reflected in rates?
    How have the changes to local government in Auckland increased democracy and accountability?

    Will the government commit to insisting NZTA prioritise projects based on their BCR?

  32. Armchair Critic 32

    Which charity or charities do yo donate your PM’s salary to?

    • Lanthanide 32.1

      Good one. It could’ve even slipped through the filter into the stuff chat as well – that would’ve been amusing. The very fact that the question asking about his $12,000 tax cut, he didn’t reply saying “actually I donate all my salary to charity” shows that he clearly doesn’t.

    • Colonial Viper 32.2

      “Well that’s a great question, and all I can say is that it goes into a well known charitable trust, a blind one of course so i don’t know who the beneficiaries are but I am comfortably sure that they are worthy recipients”

      • Armchair Critic 32.2.1

        I understand why politicians should hold their investments in a blind trust and not know what happens with that money while a politician holds public office, but…
        Why would he make donations anonymously? Why not just take personal responsibility for acts of charity? If the donations were made in a balanced and fair manner then any criticism could be made out to be churlish.
        Alternatively, if he keeps his salary (and we only have his word for it that he doesn’t), why not just admit it?

  33. Olwyn 33

    Does your concern about welfare numbers mean you are committed to a policy of full employment?

    Why does your government continue to privilege roads over rail in a country that must import most of its petrol?

    Can you explain how any of your policies will reinvigorate the real economy of NZ?

    Can you give me one good reason why a presently low-paid worker should stay here rather than emigrate to Australia?

    Do you have any policies that would address the asymmetry between wages and housing costs?

    • Lanthanide 33.1

      “Why does your government continue to privilege roads over rail in a country that must import most of its petrol?”
      Trains run on diesel, which we also import. I know what you’re angling for, but the framing is wrong. The easy answer would be something like “Most NZers have cars, so therefore they need roads”.

      • Olwyn 33.1.1

        So a better wording would be “Why does your government appear to disregard more fuel-efficient forms of transport, such as rail, when we have to import most of our fuel?”

  34. Daveski 34

    Hi Mr Key

    What employment/career advice do you plan on giving to Mr Goff after the next election? Will you make him work for the dole like the other unemployed?

    Thanks in anticipation.

    D

    PS Great thread ideal – I’ll try to think of some more 🙂

    • Pascal's bookie 34.1

      “PS Great thread ideal – I’ll try to think of some more intelligent ones.”

      Thanks. 🙂

    • gobsmacked 34.2

      Do you agree with Daveski that being an electorate MP is being “unemployed”?

      If so, does this explain why you approved Paula Bennett’s long-term absence from her electorate, on full Ministerial salary?

  35. gobsmacked 35

    1. Why did you leave the National Party?

    (for several years in the 1990’s, according to biographical data on Parliament’s website)

    2. Do you want National Party voters in Epsom to vote for the National Party candidate?

  36. richard 36

    In the 2011 Election, will you campaign on the tax cuts you have delivered, or do you think that is a bad idea given that most kiwis tax cut has been swallowed up by increases in GST, ACC, vehicle registration and ECE cuts that could costs families up to $80 per week?

  37. kriswgtn 37

    Mr Key

    1-What is going to happen to the beneficiaries who are going to be adversely affected by what your party has in store for them?

    2-Where are these people going to live after they cannot afford to pay rent and are turfed out onto the street?

  38. randal 38

    another area of concern is this.
    in the last year of the clark administration TVNZ and radio squawkback and the others were granting equal time to national to rebut labour policy.
    why is this advantage not being extended to the Labour party now?

    • OleOlebiscuitBarrell 38.1

      why is this advantage not being extended to the Labour party now?

      Ummm, it is.

      • Colonial Viper 38.1.1

        Stats?

        • OleOlebiscuitBarrell 38.1.1.1

          Me or him?

          He is the one who alleges a grand conspiracy across the media (renowned for their right-wing bias).

          • Colonial Viper 38.1.1.1.1

            well both of you, dammit, since you both sound equally sure 😛

            • OleOlebiscuitBarrell 38.1.1.1.1.1

              He or she who asserts a wrong has been committed must prove it. I am proceeding on the basis that there is no such grand conspiracy until someone proves otherwise.

              • Kaplan

                He or she who asserts a wrong has been committed must prove it.

                Had you initially responded with ‘Prove it’, then you could have followed that line but instead you replied ‘Ummm, it is.’ thereby asserting a wrong has been committed by randal, which you should now prove if asked. Apparently.

                • OleOlebiscuitBarrell

                  That would require me to first establish exactly what it is randal is alleging. Never an easy thing.

                  • felix

                    Bullshit. You directly opposed his view.

                    Bit late to say you don’t know what it is.

                    • Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                      Dude, You really have to stop obsessing over me.

                      Fair enough. I did, didn’t I.

                      My evidence that TVNZ and radio squawkback and the others are granting equal time to labour to rebut national policy is that deranged randal is the only person making this claim.

                      xxx

                    • felix

                      What do you mean “obsessing”? I count two of your comments I’ve replied to. Have I been replying to you under one of your other handles as well or something? I wouldn’t know.

                      “My evidence that TVNZ and radio squawkback and the others are granting equal time to labour to rebut national policy is that deranged randal is the only person making this claim.”

                      Then just admit you don’t have any. Simple.

  39. bobo 39

    Another question for John “Instead of paying $1.29 million a year for a Panda , could we say maybe do a Panda – cabinet minister exchange program, hell maybe even throw in a couple Act Mps in good faith, one is a compact breeding male with large ego”.

  40. You really can’t expect anything more from such a sappy, commercial news outlet such as Stuff.co.nz

    Nonetheless, Dearest John, How can New Zealander’s be expected to believe you when you claim National will not initiate the total sale of state assets after the same Government raised GST to 15% after promising not to in a pre-election statement, and if assets are sold off, will you now admit the National government is not “doing a half-decent job”?

  41. Akldnut 41

    To the HONjKEY

    Why haven’t you given Tuhoe back the land that was stolen from them as you indicated to tribal leaders would happen.

    Under Labour Maori owned the foreshore and seabed, whilst it was controlled by the Govt.
    Your party has actually removed their ownership and moved it into non ownership, will you be doing the same to the thousands of private owners of foreshoe and seabed? if not , why not?

    Do you think the alteration of the foreshore and seabed Act implemented by your Govt was nothing more that a land grab? if not, why not?

    And how do you reconcile with all Maori who are living in poverty that they now have no claim whatsoever to the afore mentioned land/asset that you have effective taken off them?

    Looking forward to your transparent reply

    Yeah right! Hone

  42. bomber 42

    Mr Key, could you explain why the ideologically stacked welfare razor gang is promoting sending solo mothers, the sick, the mentally unwell and the disabled back to work in a 6.4% unemployment environment for a global crises none of them had a hand in making?

    • Oleolebiscuitbarrell 42.1

      Since we are asking people questions, I have been meaning to ask you Bomber, why are you called “Bomber”?

      Do you blow things up? If so, what? Or is it just posturing to make yourself more attractive to radical girls?

  43. Given your admission you watch Biggest Loser, Desperate Housewives and Grey’s Anatomy you are undoubtedly aware that television in NZ is an intellectual wasteland, where pygmies run free and brain cells perish, occasionally studded with the odd diamond.

    Therefore are you prepared to consider selling TV2 and investing that money in creating out of TV1 a genuine public broadcaster showing quality programming in the mode of Australia’s ABC and SBS (regardless of whether, like SBS, it needs to continue to run advertising to make the model sustainable). If not, why not?

    [Apologies to S Hunter Thompson for the borrow and bastardisation of his famous aphorism]

    • OleOlebiscuitBarrell 43.1

      He can’t. No privatisation in the first term.

      • felix 43.1.1

        Yeah but by your standard he wouldn’t have been able to raise GST, or fire anyone from the public service, and he’d have to give everyone a tax cut “north of $50 a week”.

  44. Adders 44

    Prime Minister Key, where’s the evidence to support your contention that the recent changes to New Zealand’s labour laws were made at the behest of the Warner Brothers film studio?

  45. Rosy 45

    Could you explain the justification for sacking Environment Canterbury. And explain how this enhances citizens rights in representative democracy?

  46. What projections do you have for prison muster numbers into the future and what policies, if any, of your government can you point to as being effective in curbing those numbers?

    Given the doubt over the veracity of the informatiuon provided by David Garrett to support the introduction of “3 strikes”, can you outline what outcome projections you relied upon in reaching a decision to support the Bill? (and if you relied on Mr Garrett’s projections, are you still confident you’ve taken the correct step given the evidence that has since emerged as to his inability to render an honest answer on matters in which he has a personal stake?)

    Are you aware of – and if so, are you comfortable with – the gradual erosion of common law protections (e.g. the Search and Surveillance Bill, removal of the “claim of right” defence, removal of provocation as a defence – often on the basis of a single high-profile case) to which your government is subjecting its citizens? If so, in the absence of a Constitution, perhaps you could outline a set of “baseline” rights you believe ought to be inviolable and which you pledge not to diminish?

    Do you support a full Commission of Inquiry into the Peter Ellis case? If not, why not?

    Given your party’s outspoken and in some cases impassioned opposition to Labour’s Electoral Finance Bill (on which I commend you) can you now justify your government’s introduction of a Bill which, to all intents and purposes, has the same effect? What is wrong with simply requiring full and open disclosure by all third party advertisers?

    Rather than move toward a regime that makes name suppression more difficult to obtain, why did your government not consider imposing automatic name suppression until the verdict, to continue if the accused is acquitted (or the case subsequently dropped)? (This would protect those wrongfully accused from having their lives destroyed by suspicion and innuendo even after acquittal).

    That’ll do for a start. Standardistas, to head off the “we’re not answering Labour Party stooge’s questions” you might like to point out that I’m a real person with a real name, not a Labour Party troll. I see Rob Carr’s name above me there too. If the other commenters who’re using pseudonyms care to give you permission to use their real names on the questions, that closes one loophole through which Key may try to wriggle. Just a thought…

    • OleOlebiscuitBarrell 46.1

      …that closes one loophole through which Key may try to wriggle. Just a thought…

      Are you that deluded? If the PM was obliged to answer every stupid question any teenager raised in the blogosphere, he’d have no time to run the country, let alone watch Biggest Loser.

      • Errm. I’m not sure of the point you’re making?

        The above questions have all been asked by teenagers?

        Teenagers have no right to ask questions?

        None of the questions above raise legitimate issues and are a waste of his time?

        The holder of the office of Prime Minister is not accountable to his or her employers?

        Wrong on all counts, I’d suggest. And I’d hope Key has flunkies to run about drafting answers in his name. After all, even Peter Dunne gets an extra staff component, being a “leader” and all. It’s not as if I’m expecting Key to sit at his kitchen table, lick the end of his pencil, and start writing me a letter.

  47. Tanz 47

    Dear Mr Key, how come you chose to ignore the majority point of view re the smacking referendum? Why do you think you know better than many people who voted for you? Also, how come all comments on your Facebook page are gone, and it is now completely one-way? So much for ‘join the conversation’. That ended long ago. Also, you never respond to serious policy questions sent via email, no one else does either, except for automation. This is not good, Labour usually did respond, and with lengthy answers to queries, so good for them in that regard.

    Also, define, ‘serious’. Thanks.

  48. Rosy 48

    And by the way, how is Aroha Ireland, the 12-year-old girl from McGehan Close who helped you out with your campaigning in 2007. Surely you are still in close contact with her?

  49. john k 49

    Where the hell is Pansy Wong

  50. Akldnut 50

    Will you be sending Richard worth a Christmas Card?

  51. DJames 51

    How’s Jim Bolger doing? Have you learned any lessons from Jim Bolger’s career in politics?

  52. feijoa 52

    Dear Mr Key
    Are you going to privatise ACC, and if so, what are the benefits to claimants? Why do you want to change what is acknowledged as one of the best and cheapest accident schemes in the world? Oh, and incidentally, how much money did the Insurance industry donate to the National Party in the last couple of years?

  53. ross marwick 53

    How is your government future proofing NZ to deal with peak oil and climate change? Why aren’t green technologies such as solar, wind and wave energy not in the forefront of your policies?

    • Dear Ross, thanks for the question, the reason this govt is not investing in so called alternative energy technologies is that, according to our advisers the energy returned on energy invested in such things as you have suggested is negative, meaning the required energy (mainly oil or coal*) needed to build and maintain them will negate any energy produced.
      An example – a solar panel manufacturer couldn’t do so with 100% ‘green energy’ one such ‘wall’ is the oil based energy in the mining and shipping of all the minerals.
      You should take note of some of the other things we are doing to prepare NZ for PO and CC.
      First we are making it harder for the peasant class to have children (you haven’t seen anything yet on that one)
      As you know Anne is doing a great job in ECE. And Paula will come back with some great ideas …. we might see a few tent cities opening up around the place. A good use of unused rail corridors, don’t you think?
      We are doing our best to toughen the peasants up to make them more self reliant, because as you should know once peak oil really kicks in we will not even be able to answer the phones in Wellington (if you could afford to ring us).
      The only way the peasants are going to help themselves is if they have to.
      Oh by the way, ‘we’ are doing away with the middle class.
      Better go Biggest Loser is just about to start.
      Regards
      John
      *used in the manufacture of iron.

      • Lanthanide 53.1.1

        “*used in the manufacture of steel”
        Fixed that for you. Then again, maybe it was a sly indictment on know-nothing Key.

  54. Santi 54

    Dear Mr. Key,
    Why did you appoint Dr. Michael Cullen, to NZ Post and Kiwi Rail boards? What did the dreadful professor of history do to justify your appointment, considering he squandered many years of economic boom on wasteful initiatives that have produced no results?

    • felix 54.1

      Darling Mr Key,

      Why did you tell so many lies in opposition and confuse poor little Santi?

    • KJT 54.2

      Reduced net Government debt to zero. “Left the economy in good shape” J English.

      Compared to NACT borrowing 200 mil a week for tax cuts for the bludgers.

  55. john k 55

    mr Key
    why did you only answer soft questions on your digital smile and wave show?

  56. burt 56

    John

    As a lot of my friends and work colleagues moved to Australia under the last Labour administration I’m pleased to say the flow has declined now. However one thing that might help reverse it is matching some really sensible policies in place in Aussie and many other countries. Is there any policy agenda to make fees paid for private education and health care tax deductible for the ordinary job blogs wage or salary earner?

    • “pleased to say the flow has declined now.”

      Oh please stop the blue dribble burt. 2011 – expect record numbers of kiwis to fly away from this land of liars and a pc false smile PM.

      • Robert Atack 56.1.1

        That is another idea we came up with to combat Peak Oil – reduce the amount of people in NZ, it means less to kill off later.
        We are also thinking of starting an emigrant lead recovery by filling some of the houses on the market at the moment,(53 weeks supply), as the Chinese economy goes tits up we are going to sell passports to rich Chinese, call it points.
        Which could mean more takeaways and hookers?
        JK

        • Lanthanide 56.1.1.1

          When the effects of peak oil start becoming even more apparent, I’m expecting a migration of kiwis returning home from overseas. Could be quite interesting.

  57. Jan 57

    In New Zealand, according to your recent use of the biblical quotation “We are all our brother’s keeper”
    Which actions, if any, of the current government demonstrate this belief in action?

  58. tc 58

    In my local paper (the east & bays courier) you’ve stated that “the national led gov’t is spending more on health than ever before…” could you provide the numerical evidence please.

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    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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