John Key

Text of the day

Russel Norman is determined to score a hit on John Key and has pledged to ask him question after question about Cameron Slater.

Yesterday a Black Ops operative ( Wellington branch ) ‘ obtained ‘ a copy of the following text.

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My good friend Brian Edwards on Labour’s leadership prospects

My good friend Brian Edwards seems to have gotten a second wind, or found some luncheon sausage because he has written two posts in as many days.

Yesterday he analysed the leadership prospects.

He seems to have lost some of his old circumspection.

His thoughts on Andrew Little:

I simply don’t believe that the country is ready for a grim-faced former union leader to be Prime Minister or to be this country’s envoy overseas.

Nanaia Mahuta:

Nanaia Mahuta has already conceded that she’s unlikely to win the race and she is to be admired for her honesty.

Which is a really back handed way of saying she is tits. That really is the most spectacular damning with faint praise I have seen in a long time.  Read more »

Is Key a subscriber to ‘canoe theory’?

Todd S. Purdum looks at California’s Governor Jerry Brown:

Brown’s politics have long been tough to pigeonhole. He is personally ascetic, like the Jesuit seminarian he once was, and in his first term famously drove a plebeian Plymouth. He has always been a bit of a fiscal skinflint and now bucks liberal orthodoxy on questions like legalizing marijuana. His long-standing credo has been the “canoe theory” — that the best way to head in a straight line is to paddle a little to the left and then to the right. In contrast to a Legislature widely seen as left of center, he is viewed as middle of the road.

It is hard to argue when reading that description of Jerry Brown that it doesn’t also fit John Key perfectly.

John Key sits squarely in the middle, with little paddles to the left, and then little paddles to the right. So far he has got the balance in the canoe just right.

But all it takes to tip a canoe over is a rogue wave, or a boat to speed past or the canoe to spring a leak.   Read more »

Face of the day

Russel Norman

Russel Norman

Norman pledges to keep on at PM

New Zealanders expect their Prime Minister to be open, Green Party co-leader Russel Norman says as he pledges to keep asking John Key questions about blogger Cameron Slater.

“The Prime Minister has had a very close relationship with Cameron Slater, who has been engaged in some very unsavoury things.

“I think the people of New Zealand have got a right to know what he’s been up to.”

-RadioNZ

Read more »

Of course National’s politics are dirty. Who is Key trying to kid?

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Where the hell is Key going with this?   Does he pretend the book doesn’t exist?   Does he pretend that Ede wasn’t working with a wide range of people, including bloggers?

That can’t be dirty then?

Prime Minister John Key says he has seen no evidence his staff behaved unprofessionally as he continued to face questions about his links to Cameron Slater.

During Question Time in Parliament today, three of the 12 primary questions were related to events detailed in Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics. Read more »

Responding to ISIS threat requires domestic law changes

Adam Bennett’s on it:

Mr Key this morning indicated any resulting laws, which he hopes to pass before Christmas under urgency, would probably be focused on tightening laws around the removal of passports.

While authorities could already confiscate passports of people suspected of planning to travel overseas to fight, Mr Key this morning said there were “a range of issues” that needed further work.

“It’s the capacity to keep those passports cancelled or the renewal process you have to go through”.

“What we are trying to do when it comes to patch that we might put on our legislation is keeping it as narrow as possible. There would a sunset clause in terms of what we’d do and there’d be a small select committee process”.

“So we’re not trying to broaden this thing out and throw everything into a melting pot and pass things under a cover of what’s happening in Iraq and Syria. I think we’ll only realistically get the other political parties to join us if we can convince them both that this is necessary and reasonably tight in terms of its focus.”

That seems rather measured and reasonable to me.  Mind you, what I’d like to see if the passports cancelled after they have left New Zealand.  That solves two problems.   Read more »

Brian Edwards on Labour’s leadership struggle

My good friend Brian Edwards gives his 10 cents worth on Labour’s leadership struggle.

It would have been nice if the Labour Party caucus had just been able to get together and pick a new leader, following the departure of David Cunliffe. That would have been the tidy way of doing things – a secret ballot, no dirty laundry washed in public, no protracted taking of soundings from all and sundry, no overt competition between the aspirants.

Let’s not do that then! Too sensible. Too easy. Too quick. Too like the way the National Party does things. And look where that got them.

So when the unions and the membership and the caucus have been consulted and weighed up the respective merits of the four contenders, there’ll be a new leader ready to take on John Key and the Nats.

Not an easy job when three out of four New Zealand voters just made it crystal  clear that they didn’t want a bar of you. And even less easy when you’ve just made it plain as a pikestaff to the electorate that no-one in your caucus stands out as the obvious, unchallengeable, next leader of the party. And certainly not Nanaia Mahuta, Andrew Little, Grant Robertson or David Parker.

Uh oh…all is not right in the Edwards household…perhaps the luncheon sausage ran out.

It’s not that they’re unintelligent or palpably untrustworthy or – as far as we know – have deep dark secrets waiting to emerge from the abyss like Kafka’s beetle. No, it’s just that three of them are dull and the fourth is interesting for the wrong reason.

No X-factor, no pizzazz, no charisma, no capacity to generate excitement. Oh for a Kirk, a Lange, a Clark. Good lord, even Geoffrey Palmer could play the trumpet!

Read more »

Isis will “rain carnage on the world” – John Key

Seems John is done pussy footing around

Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a coalition fight against the extremist group.

Speaking to Radio New Zealand this morning, Mr Key said he was still weighing up the risks and benefits of New Zealand adopting a military response against Isis, vowing to “carefully trod our way through this”.

However, he was of the belief that Isis were “very bad people” and a military response was morally justified.

“They’re very bad people and left unchecked they will rain carnage on the world, that’s my view of these people,” he told the broadcaster.

This is a critical moment in Key’s leadership.  If we have a domestic incident after he commits New Zealand to fighting ISIS in the Middle East, it will be interesting to see how the public will react when the bleeding and deaths are on our own doorstep.   Read more »

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Cartoon of the Day

Credit:  SonovaMin

Credit: SonovaMin

Time to twist the knife some more

Hamish Rutherford thinks it’s a good idea to push Judith Collins into the mud and grind her face down some more.  All based on an email that didn’t even come from the Dirty Politics book.  And Collins will be cleared of any wrongdoing.

Two former National ministers have gone right to the back of the class, among just four in the 60 strong caucus earning the basic MP’s salary.

Following the first week of Parliament, 56 of National’s MPs have been made either ministers, whips, speakers, chairs or deputy chairs of select committees.

All of those roles come with additional pay, from the $4600 extra paid to select committee deputy chairs, to the extra $280,700 paid to Prime Minister John Key.

But Judith Collins and Maurice Williamson, who were both ministers earlier this year, now earn the basic MP’s salary of $147,800, along with newcomers Parmjeet Parmar and Todd Barclay, 24.

Barclay, the baby of the House, was not born until Williamson had been an MP for almost three years. When Barclay joined Bill English’s office as a junior official, Judith Collins was Police Minister. Read more »