John Key

Oh boohoo Felix, get over yourself

[John Key’s] valedictory address made no mention of the supportive bloggers he was also in touch with when he was the PM.

At a post-cabinet press conference back in early 2014, John Key said in passing that he did have contact with some bloggers – and political reporters pricked up their ears.

Many of them already reckoned newsworthy information was being channeled to online operators sympathetic to National and its leader, as a means of getting selected messages out via the mainstream media subsequently.

Newstalk ZB’s chief political reporter Felix Marwick was one who had suspicions.

He lodged a series of Official Information Act requests to find out what the Prime Minister and several cabinet ministers were passing on, and to whom.

Some ministers responded to say they’d shared a few bits and pieces with bloggers. Others replied to say they’d shared no information at all.

But he says Judith Collins and Paula Bennett didn’t disclose anything. Neither did John Key.

Marwick has been leaving out some of the important bits.  Sure, he asked for all the comms between Judith Collins (and others) and Cameron Slater.   He wasn’t the only one.

There were a number of problems for Felix on his numerous OIA requests.  One, the actual volume of correspondence was very low or non-existent.  And where it did exist, the minister involved used genuine reasons under the OIA to deny the request.

“Right”, I hear you say, “pull the other one!”.   Read more »

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Too toxic for the Greens

It appears that Steffan Browning is too toxic even for the Green party.

Their values page on their website has as one of the key values for Green members that they “Engage respectfully, without personal attacks.”

Clearly, Steffan Browning doesn’t have the foggiest idea about those values:

Green MP Steffan Browning was ordered by his party to take down an offensive social media post about former prime minister John Key, Newshub is reporting.

Mr Browning put it up on his Facebook page during Mr Key’s valedictory speech in parliament on Thursday evening.   Read more »

No class from Steffan Browning [UPDATED]

The Green party used to have a rule that they should debate issues not attack people personally.

Unfortunately, after Rod Donald died and Jeanette Fitzsimons left that quietly went by the wayside.   Read more »

[POLL] Do you care about Key’s farewell speech?

From hero to Mr 2 per cent. The story of John Key’s departure from politics is almost as remarkable as his extraordinary rise.

One day he was at the top of his game, cruising to a fourth term, and still surprisingly popular for a third time prime minister. Within weeks of his bombshell about stepping down, Key is barely rating in the preferred prime minister stakes. A distant memory and he hasn’t left Parliament yet.

To be honest, I feel somewhat let down.  He could have delivered an easy fourth term for National and then stepped away.   But that’s the cold fish that he is.  He may be personable and approachable, but he didn’t get where he is today by not being able to be stone hearted and brutal when the occasion calls for it.   Read more »

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Andrew “No mates” Little can finally compete on a level playing field

After Labour’s victory in the Mt Roskill byelection the party’s leader Andrew Little quipped then Prime Minister John Key had forgotten “the purpose of an election campaign is to win votes, not selfies”.

That insult will need to be retired along with Key. Hardly a selfie was taken when Prime Minister Bill English met students at Victoria University in Wellington today.

That was partly because people did not push forward to meet English like they did Key…

Nobody wants a selfie with Bill.

Think of the increase in productivity!   Read more »

Bill always looks after his mates, others not so much

Bill English has always been loyal to his mates. It is why dead set useless idiots like Nick Smith keep their jobs.

It is also why he isn’t that popular and needs a refreshed caucus who have not experienced his feather-bedding, favouritism and retribution. That’s basically how he got elected leader again.

Now he’s shafted Maurice Williamson and a cosy deal arranged by John Key between Labour and National, preferring to release his mate from parliament early instead.

Barry Soper has the story:

There was a lot of speculation as to why Bill English decided to go to the polls early, on September the 23rd, rather than giving himself a bit more time to solidify his hold on the job following the shock departure of John Key.

English could have waited another couple of months before he was forced by law to go to the country.   Read more »

Karl du Fresne on National’s betrayal of Israel

Karl du Fresne writes about National’s betrayal of Israel by sponsoring UNSC 2334:

Is there any more intractable issue in international affairs than that of Israel and Palestine? Offhand, I can’t think of any.

It’s tricky for a whole lot of reasons. One is that the competing claims of the two sides, Israel and the Palestinians, both have some weight.

The Jews, having suffered centuries in exile, mostly in countries where they experienced relentless discrimination and persecution, have a right to a homeland where they can feel safe and secure. But the Palestinians feel aggrieved because to provide that Jewish homeland, they were displaced from land that they regarded as theirs.

Read more »

Good News for Winston

John Key doesn’t get his numbers wrong very often, and he has made this prediction for the post election negotiations.

Key told Roughan quitting was the hardest decision of his life but he remained convinced it was the right call. Read more »

Rodney Hide on John Key’s no principle government

John Key governed for himself. There were only three things he wanted after becoming Prime Minister, he wanted four terms, to beat Sir Keith Holyoake as National’s longest serving Prime Minister and a knighthood.

Really, he was that shallow.

When it became apparent that he could get a fourth term but only if he cut a deal with Winston it all got too much for him. That nagged away at him and it also would have meant almost no chance of scoring his second ambition, to beat Sir Keith Holyoake’s record. So he cut a quiet deal with Bill English, gave him several months to set up his palace coup, so to speak, giving any other contenders almost no time to marshall the numbers. The deal is that Bill English will hold an election sometime after Queens Birthday Weekend. Why? Well because it would have been unseemly to give John Key his knighthood in the New Year’s honours, wouldn’t it?

So John Key will get his knighthood and not much else. He did, however, build a cult of personality around himself which Bill English is stupidly trying to insert himself into.

What did John Key leave us with policy wise?

Well, not much according to Rodney Hide.

John Key resigned after eight years as our most popular prime minister. He came in on a high and he stayed there.

There are many aspects to his great success but policy is of the most interest. It’s what government does that determines a nation’s success. Read more »

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Dotcom says he could have proved the Moment of Truth, but decided not to

Laila Harre has popped up in the news giving tame interviews to friendly journos to try and do some image repair after her high profile crash-n-burn with Dotcom’s Internet party.  Apparently, the “Moment of Truth” email was genuine, but Dotcom held critical information back.

Yeah, really!

The Herald approached Dotcom on the issue [yesterday], receiving an emailed response. He said: “I’m 100% sure that the email is genuine. Unfortunately it was leaked without headers.

“My lawyers advised me against using it at the Moment of Truth. They suggested to use the courts, at the appropriate time, to seek discovery and depositions.”

He said it had been difficult to get all the discovery which he believed was necessary for his case and was hoping to address that in a case before the Human Rights Tribunal shortly.

The so-called email was dated October 27, 2010 and was purported to be from Warner Brothers chairman and chief executive Kevin Tsujihara. The content of the so-called email claimed it had been sent to a senior executive at the Motion Picture Association of America – the lobby group for the Hollywood studios. Read more »