Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Dirty Politics

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  • Kracklite,

    "Planet Key" has been banned and Key's more of a Coldplay guy, but I wonder if he's heard this song?

    The Library of Babel • Since Nov 2007 • 982 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Sacha,

    Can we just agree there isn’t any and move on?

    I was going to say "yeah, sure" but I've thought about it and this is one of the key things that Hager is pointing out - that we enable slugs like Slater by accepting the crap lines he feeds (as Susie Ferguson did) and we don't point out that the emperor is naked, as Harre did, when she could get a word in.

    What irks me about Craig's comments is the hypocrisy I see in maligning the leader of a party by misrepresenting what she said. That's right out of the Slater/Farrar playbook, and I will call it out when I see it.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2931 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Meyers, in reply to nzlemming,

    I was initially there in calling out Craig as promoting something that I didn't think was what Laila Harre had said. I had heard her in person at the Internet Mana roadshow rather than on Morning Report (which I have now listened to).

    I've got a couple of points. Firstly, I still think after listening to the Morning Report interview that Harre wasn't calling in to question the integrity of the Electoral Commission. However, Harre shouldn't get a free pass on this either. Is there any evidence that Collins is running down the budget of the EC? Is she otherwise hindering their operation? I've seen no evidence of this. So, you can say that Harre is being misrepresented, but what of her position. Is she also misrepresenting reality.

    Also, I have to disagree about Harre failing to get a word in. Harre was very evasive about any relationship that Kim Dotcom has to the Nicky Hager emails. She seemed wholly unprepared for a question that should've been expected. This was not preventing her getting a word in but rather asking pertinent questions.

    Wellington • Since May 2014 • 56 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Michael Meyers,

    Also, I have to disagree about Harre failing to get a word in. Harre was very evasive about any relationship that Kim Dotcom has to the Nicky Hager emails. She seemed wholly unprepared for a question that should’ve been expected. This was not preventing her getting a word in but rather asking pertinent questions.

    Oath – and I don’t blame her one little bit for wanting to talk about Cameron Slater as desperately as Key was trying to avoid the subject literally minutes earlier. And even if you think he’s Evil Incarnate, you’ve got to have a sneaking admiration for Joyce’s steely determination to stay on (talking) point, even if reduces an interview to a piece of Dadaist performance art.

    That’s what politicians do, and what journalists shouldn’t have a bar of without tipping things into a ridiculous shouting match. Which neither Fergusson nor Espiner did yesterday, and all credit to them. Neither of them “shouted down” or “ran over” anyone, but had the gall to expect straight answers to straight and legitimate questions. Keep it up, I say.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Roger Lacey,

    I'm just so glad that this stuff was leaked to Nicky Hager and not Winston Peters.

    Whatakataka Bay Surf Club… • Since Apr 2008 • 148 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Michael Meyers,

    We agree that she wasn't calling the EC into question. What she said was:

    This is the woman who is part of a strategy to reduce voter turnout in the election and she is the minister in charge of the Electoral Commission, our public body charged with engaging voters, enrolling them and ensuring that they turn out to vote.

    She didn't accuse her of manipulating the EC, but we have a track record of lying from Collins and misusing taxpayer resources for her own benefit, so it's fair to question whether she's a fit person to manage a central pillar of our democracy, the electoral process, even without the stuff in Nicky's book. Harre did not accuse Collins of doing any of those things (in fact their budget is up, but that's standard in an election year, and it's about the same as it was in the last election year) but questioned her fitness to hold the warrant of responsibility, given matters in the public arena since October last year.

    I'm not giving Harre a free pass. She should have been ready for those questions, I agree, which is why I initially agreed with Craig on Twitter that it was not a good look. However, to ask her about Bradbury was completely asinine. He's been out of the picture since Alistair Thompson had to fall on his sword last year.

    What you don't get from the transcript is the difficulty I had in making out a lot of what Harre had to say because of Ferguson talking over her. That's not asking pertinent questions - that's just badgering. There's a place for it, in judicious measure, but she should really review some of Geoff Robinson's interviews where he let his subjects lay out their own rope before he tripped them up with it.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2931 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Dunavan, in reply to Kracklite,

    Planet Key will be removed from sale by 5pm this Thursday by order of the Electoral Commission.

    https://www.facebook.com/darrenwatson.nz

    This is bizarre and disturbing.

    North Otago • Since Jul 2014 • 3 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford, in reply to Michael Meyers,

    However, Harre shouldn’t get a free pass on this either. Is there any evidence that Collins is running down the budget of the EC? Is she otherwise hindering their operation? I’ve seen no evidence of this.

    Do you have any evidence she hasn’t? :)

    But seriously, Harré was saying that Collins is not fit and proper to be in public office, in light of her bullying public servants.

    And, regarding the questioning about Kim Dot Com involvement in hacking Slaters computer systems. He has publicly stated that he had nothing to do with it. What would you suggest Harré could have added to that?

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4411 posts Report Reply

  • Trevor Nicholls, in reply to Scott Dunavan,

    Has anyone reported 7# to the EC? It's every bit as blatant as PK, and it's certainly more performance than journalism.

    Wellington, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 324 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Aston, in reply to Roger Lacey,

    I’m just so glad that this stuff was leaked to Nicky Hager and not Winston Peters.

    Good point Roger , mind you Winston seems to like big wads of paper in wine boxes, maybe he would not know what to do with all the digital files.

    Northland • Since Nov 2006 • 509 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to nzlemming,

    I will call it out when I see it

    and you've done so, well.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • A S,

    The latest @whaledump release is interesting. It appears that Judith Collins didn't just release the name and role of the public servant whaleoil wanted to attack, she helpfully included his cell phone and direct dial numbers too.

    Personal contact info like this isn't generally found in the public domain, particularly for people whose jobs aren't very public facing.

    This feels a bit seedier and more deliberately nasty than that way she attempted to pass it off to the media as her just harmlessly passing on a name to a friend...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2007 • 269 posts Report Reply

  • Brent Jackson, in reply to A S,

    ... or the changed story of just giving his official title.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 615 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    And yet again the PM is embarrassed after relaying to the public Judith’s lie that it was only the name and role. Game over?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    John Key has announced that Judith Collins is now on her "last chance". Hold on... didn't he say exactly that after the Oravida scandal? Apparently this time he really really really means it... cross your fingers and hope to die!

    This is sounding more like a Monty Python skit every day. "It's only a flesh wound" (from the Life of Brian) comes to mind.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1427 posts Report Reply

  • Kracklite, in reply to Alfie,

    Or Xeno's paradox of the arrow. She's on the last half of her last chance, and after that, the last half of that half...

    The Library of Babel • Since Nov 2007 • 982 posts Report Reply

  • Rosemary McDonald, in reply to Alfie,

    this time he really really really means it…

    "If you don't stop that RIGHT NOW Judith my girl, by God you're going to be sorry...

    I'm serious this time,

    I'll count to three...one, two, two and a half, two and three quarters....."

    Waikato, or on the road • Since Apr 2014 • 1344 posts Report Reply

  • Trevor Nicholls,

    Counting to three takes a long time when you count in negative numbers...

    Wellington, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 324 posts Report Reply

  • Rosemary McDonald, in reply to Alfie,

    “It’s only a flesh wound” (from the Life of Brian) comes to mind.

    Sorry to be pedantic...but wasn't that from the Holy Grail?

    Waikato, or on the road • Since Apr 2014 • 1344 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    How the worm turns. Slater describes Ede as "squeamish" and "gutless" for not fronting up to the media. And he appears to be lashing out at others in his circle.

    Slater also defended asking an ex-prostitute from information about politicians. He said they were "all a bunch of sanctimonious pricks who claim to be innocent who claim to be innocent in all respects and above reproach. I've been around politics for a long long time and I know that's bullshit."

    As Slater grew up in the bosom of the National Party, I guess he's speaking the truth for once.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1427 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    Sorry to be pedantic...but wasn't that from the Holy Grail?

    Well spotted Rosemary. I was mixing my Pythons.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1427 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    This is unbelievable.

    Herald story:

    Judith Collins was "unwise" to pass details of a public servant to blogger Cameron Slater and she is now on her last chance, Prime Minister John Key says.

    His warning comes just five months after an earlier final warning to his Justice Minister.

    Speaking before the Maori King's anniversary celebrations outside Turangawaewae in Ngaruawahia this afternoon, Mr Key said he could only take Ms Collins' word that she only leaked public servant Simon Pleasants' job title and also phone numbers and not his name to Slater.

    And here's the email, posted today by @whaledump. With Pleasants' name in it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22811 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Gordon Campbell has written a considered article stating that it's Key’s ‘nice guy' persona – rather than the contents of Hager’s book – that's unraveling.

    When future historians seek to identify the exact moment when the prime ministerial career of John Key hit the downward slope, they may well point to Key’s interview yesterday with Guyon Espiner on RNZ’s Morning Report. In particular, they’ll cite the broken record moment when Espiner repeatedly asked Key whether he thought the behaviour of his Justice Minister Judith Collins was OK, and Key kept on trying to ignore the question. Was it OK with Key that one of his Cabinet Ministers has admitted that she secretly released to Cameron Slater the name of a public servant that she thought might have leaked some information that had embarrassed the government, thereby exposing that individual, as Espiner noted, “to some pretty serious death threats.” Is that OK?

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1427 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Mr Key said he could only take Ms Collins’ word

    what a moral weakling.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • Max Rose, in reply to Russell Brown,

    And here’s the email, posted today by @whaledump. With Pleasants’ name in it.

    The only defence that I can imagine is that Slater already knew the name, and asked Collins something like "Hey, what's Pleasants' job title?"

    Wellington • Since Sep 2011 • 83 posts Report Reply

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