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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Key's credibility downgrade over credit downgrade comments

So Standard & Poor's came out this week to refute the Prime Ministers claim that a change of Government would see another credit downgrade. Apparently John based his comment, not from Standard and Poor's directly, but based it on a Bloke down pub who once owned a couch bought by the gardener of a women who later changed genders and purchased a company that had shares partly owned by a milkman who had a child who went to school with a girl who once caught measles from a man who owned a dog that once humped the leg of an analyst at Standard & Poor's.

Of course that is credible Prime Minister, why did any of us doubt you?



At 12/10/11 12:12 pm, Blogger Ovicula said...

When comparing the honesty of Key to that of Standard & Poors, the only reasonable conclusion is that both are lying.

At 12/10/11 1:04 pm, Blogger bchapman said...

Nancy Reagan used Tarot cards readings to tell Ronny how to run the oval office. At least there was an attributable trail of decision making in that case.

At 12/10/11 4:04 pm, Blogger Gem said...

Being accused of misleading Parliament and, by extension, misleading the public, seems to be becoming a common theme for the National party. Here is another example:


If anyone reading these posts (regardless of where you are on the political spectrum) believes that criticisms of Key and Tolley are unfair, could you please explain why their actions are justifiable?

Is it acceptable to attribute statements to individuals and organisations that, as it turns out, deny making such statements? Is it OK, when cornered, to conjure up a supposedly reliable source, as Key did? If the wonderfully helpful anonymous source was so reliable and trustworthy, why didn’t Key say something along the lines of, “A reliable source has informed me that…”? Why is no one confessing to being this source? See http://www.nzherald.co.nz/economy/news/article.cfm?c_id=34&objectid=10758381.

Perhaps Simon Power knows, as he has just been handed a plum job at Westpac: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10758419

As for Tolley, perhaps there is an important difference between being stood down and suspended. Maybe someone could comment on what that difference might be. In any case, is there anyone out there who would want schools to receive educational advice, which will obviously affect students, from a person who had been removed from his or her position, due to serious allegations being made about him or her? To use different professions: would it be appropriate to appoint to a professional ethics committee a doctor who had been stood down while allegations of professional misconduct against her were investigated? Should a lawyer who couldn’t practice while allegations of professional misconduct by him were being investigated be appointed to a group of lawyers that exists to advise lawyers how to practice law in the most professional way possible?

Was Deborah Mutu cleared of wrongdoing? Was the matter resolved before she left her previous employment? If it was, then it is important to remember the fundamental difference between being accused of something and being found guilty of something.

Are there some situations in which a source’s anonymity must be preserved? I’m sure there are such situations. I am not sure that Parliament is the place for anonymous, inaccessible and therefore unverifiable sources to be used. Maybe someone could demonstrate when it would be appropriate to use anonymous sources in Parliament.

Perhaps Key and Tolley have done nothing wrong per se by, in the former case, claiming information came from an anonymous source and, in the latter situation, instating someone whose past might ring alarm bells into a highly responsible role that directly relates to the profession in which that person has had her suitability questioned. Presumably, both Key and Tolley believe in what they are doing. Key was trying to discredit Labour with his remarks about Standard & Poor’s and Tolley was trying to defend the appointment of Mutu. To avoid allegations of lying, Key could have turned to credible sources to achieve his goal of bringing Labour into disrepute. Tolley could have been open about Mutu’s background from the outset. There was no need for Key and Tolley to behave as they did. They have failed themselves, their party, their Parliamentary colleagues and the public by not being upfront and honest and by failing to foresee and pre-empt the problems that would inevitably arise due to their lack of transparency.

At 13/10/11 1:13 am, Blogger Frank said...


""If anyone reading these posts (regardless of where you are on the political spectrum) believes that criticisms of Key and Tolley are unfair, could you please explain why their actions are justifiable?""

Nat/ACT supporters usually point at Helen Clark's "paintergate" thing.

So basically, Key could machinegun a schoolbus full of kids - and National/ACT supporters would simply respond,

"Yeah, but you're forgetting Paintergate, aren't you! What about that!!!"

At 13/10/11 7:57 pm, Blogger Gem said...

Frank - "So basically, Key could machinegun a schoolbus full of kids - and National/ACT supporters would simply respond,

'Yeah, but you're forgetting Paintergate, aren't you! What about that!!!'"

Yes, that is the typical response. No doubt, now Helen Clark is free of Prime Ministerial responsibilities, she is enjoying a flourishing career creating convincing art forgeries. What a joke. The intense media focus on inconsequential issues, such as Paintergate and Phil Goff’s hair colour, shows the extent to which New Zealanders are being encouraged to latch onto trivialities, rather than engaging in intelligent discussion about things that actually matter. I mean that in a non-partisan way, although I am sure you can read between the lines and see where my political views lie. Everyone, regardless of political belief, should surely welcome healthy debate and discussion.

Sadly, the tendency of the media to devote an inordinate amount of time to puerile matters is antithetical to robust discussion and to the flourishing of democracy. Bomber being banned from Radio New Zealand exemplifies the propensity of the media to shy away from anything remotely real and controversial.

As an aside, has anyone else noticed the increasingly inappropriate figures of speech that media figures have taken to using? On TV3 News tonight, Hillary Barry described the people who have flocked to Tauranga beaches to help with the clean up as (paraphrasing) being akin to children who have been told that they aren’t allowed to play in their favourite sandpit. Actually, no – these people aren’t behaving like temperamental children. They are expressing their intense emotions in the face of a disastrous situation.

Barry also described the washed up containers as (paraphrasing again) being similar to extra-terrestrial objects. Maybe someone with media knowledge could explain the purpose and desired effect of such inappropriate, jarring figures of speech – In my opinion, these clumsy comparisons sound like something people would use in a high school media studies project, and a mediocre one at that.

Also: I think if I hear another politician using rugby metaphors, like “a rolling maul,” “kick off”, “goalposts”, etc. etc. I won’t be responsible for my actions.

At 15/10/11 12:07 am, Blogger Frank said...

Quite correct, Gem, about the MSM's style.

We used to wonder, once upon a time, in the 20th century, what a US-style "dumbed down" media would be like...

Well, I guess we wonder no more. We have it, by the oily bucketful.

And when someone like 'Bomber' makes a few pointed comments about John Key's outrageous behaviour - it's Martyn who is banned!!! I guess the "sleepy hobbits" don't like to be wakened.

On the plus side, I can sense a turning tide in the way that NZers are seeing Dear Leader. Perhaps it was the way that Key stumbled through the televised Press Gallery interview - journalists seemed to have lost their fear-awe of Dear Leader. They were actually pushing for answers!


I think this press gathering is the turning point. I believe it marks the turning point in how we view Dear Leader.


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