I can’t see English throwing civil servants under the bus
Me neither. But I certainly wouldn't say he's denouncing his colleagues who have.
It's good that finally someone from the National Cabinet has spoken up against 'acting that way' - some more takes on it from Twitter:
Bill English visibly uncomfortable today answering questions #dirtypolitics allegations, partic those regarding Judith Collins.
English [on Collins giving Simon Pleasants' name to WO]: “That’s a style of politics, it’s not a style I like and I don’t participate in it”.
Bill English says it is not the sort of politics he engages in.
Bill English does not condone attack politics outlined in Nicky Hager’s book but won’t be drawn on whether Judith Collins should face consequences.
Key has probably judged correctly that outside the political bubble most people don't know and/or don't care, but he may have misjudged how the toxicity could grow.
However, it’s not the fulsome denunciation that some are making it out to be.
I think it's reasonably significant. He makes it pretty clear Collins is Key's responsibility.
has spoken up against ‘acting that way’
he has only said that *he* wouldn't
“I wouldn’t do that and I don't like it” is as close to “what the fuck were you playing at” as a minister can get when talking about another minister.
If English were simply unimpressed he’d have said something like “oh that’s a matter for Judith, I’m not going to get into it”. He was consciously giving a quote that would run prominently as an expression of disapproval.
in context he’s also putting it on her rather than himself:
Asked if it was OK for Collins to seek revenge on his behalf, he said he had not sought revenge. He had taken action over the accommodation issue five years ago, dropping his accommodation claim after public criticism.
It was his responsibility and he took responsibility.
a quote that would run prominently as an expression of disapproval
I guess they were running out of colleagues who could pull that off. :)
This ‘they all do it’ cop out is getting beyond a joke – there just isn’t an equivalent to Slater on the left.
No there's not an equivalent, but there's plenty of try hards. For instance:
Brook Sabin has just tweeted that Key now says Collins' actions were "unwise".
Is that a bus I see coming?
Pete, really? I think that’s a bit of a reach.
Anyway, yeah, I think Collins is heading for the exits, but I don’t know if that’s enough now.
how is that comment remotely equivalent in terms of intent?
And apart from anything else, that's a nobody in the comments! For heaven's sake why does he even try?
the lure of beige
I think Collins is heading for the exits, but I don’t know if that’s enough now.
Better late than never but there's significant damage been done in the meantime. As far as enough goes, Ede should have already been dealt to publicly as well.
No. The majority of journalists never get near sensational stories.
And that’s true as far as it goes, but these damn things don’t just magically appear Harry Potter-style. Not for the first time, I have to wonder if the media in this country is magically assembled by elves when everyone else has gone home. Because every damn time the media gets caught with its hands in the chamber pot it’s always everyone else’s fault.
Does anyone actually have editorial responsibility for anything in New Zealand media? Or is the golden rule here that nobody shits where they eat, because a media culture that evades self-reflection, transparency and accountability doesn't strike me as much of a contributor to civil discourse either.
Because blog comments like that are an insidious part of dirty politics. No one so far has challenged it. And the blog lets them go while being draconian on other far less serious things - that makes the blog as dirty as any.
Maybe the moderators are busy but I've seen plenty of dirt allowed to keep running.
You couldn't get much a much worse accusation or insinuation than that - you would understand if you were on the receiving end.
And it's old too - "That rumour’s been circulating Wellington for a long time, but I can’t substantiate it." Dirty politics.
If we were better than that, surely the MSM would stop interviewing the PM until he actually bothered to acknowledge that he has read...
Fixed it for you.
I too would love to hear John Key asked "Why haven't you read the book ?", and when he trots out the "left-wing conspiracy theorist" line, they can retort "But it is backed up with evidence, so how can you so blithely dismiss it ?".
It seems blatantly obvious to me that the reason John Key cannot ask his people about the accusations, is because John Key already knows all about them, and is trying to protect his loyal "servants".
You know, let's be totally upfront here. I have real problems with the way the Standard is run, particularly the moderation. But some no-name commenter making offensive implications is both wrong, and something that should be dealt with, and absolutely nothing fucking like what Cam Slater has been doing for the past ten years.
Oh I agree - that's disgusting. The saving grace, as others have pointed out, is that it's just an anonymous commenter, but I'd like to see the moderators deal with that sort of crap. The biblical quote about removing the plank from your own eye comes to mind.
But there is an extent to which political journalists especially are required to play the game.
Sorry, Russell, but that’s bullshit. They choose to and I thought grown-ups were expected to be honest about, and accountable for, their actions in this sad and sorry world. At least, that sounds an awful lot like what political journalists are happy to demand from everyone else on a daily basis.
Also it would seem that some in the Nats would quite like Collins to Go Away, but others are going to the mat for her. This must be playing havoc with the election campaign organisation.
Keir - have you read that thread? Two comments allege much more than what you're claiming.
Dismissing dirt as 'not as dirty as Slater' sets an awfully poor standard - especially alongside another post there today titled Left wing blogs aren’t “the same” - if they want to criticise some else's standards they should try having some of their own.
No there’s not an equivalent, but there’s plenty of try hards. For instance:
It's over to you, Pete, to identify a left-leaning blogger with even a tenth of the venality and vindictiveness of WhaleOil.
Before we pat The Herald too hard on the back, this is the same Jared Savage who (as far as I’m aware) never retracted or apologized to anyone involved for implying Brown exerted “influence” to get Chuang employed by the Auckland City Art Gallery. Yes? So excuse me if I hold to my position that when you lie down with dogs, you not only get up with fleas but you’re not welcome in my house any more.
It was a legitimate thing to report and the first person quoted in Savage's story is Chuang, saying she didn't believe the reference from the mayor's office (which was one of a number) was the reason she got the job. That's followed by the statement from the mayor's office. It's a straightforward report and sticks entirely to the facts.
Which, well, highly tasteless and offensive if it’s true, and therefore a bit off to be retailing without evidence, but I leave to the reader to judge how it compares to smearing victims of sexual assault etc.
Oh, Jesus... Could you take a moment and really think about what you just did there?