The Dim-Post

October 29, 2008

You come at the king, you best not miss

Filed under: Politics — danylmc @ 3:47 pm
Tags: ,

Labour have released their much vaunted ‘neutron bomb’ against John Key:

John Key faces accusations of misleading the public about his knowledge of one of New Zealand’s most notorious white collar crimes.

The allegations centre around the so-called H-Fee – two payments totalling A$66.5 million to Equiticorp funnelled via sham foreign exchange transactions in 1988 – and an interview Mr Key gave the Herald last year.

The timing is most felicitous – this kicks Peters off the front page and will likely keep John Key on there for the rest of the campaign. Whether Mr Key comes out of this alive or not depends in part on how he responds  to the allegations. Remember boys, its not the crime that kills you – its the cover-up.

As far as Labour are concerned, they’ve been rubbing their hands and gloating about this for a while – it had better work. They’re so far behind in the polls that if Key simply blows this out of the water – as he’s done with a couple of other Labour smears – they will look pathetically desperate.


  1. To me this just proves what I have long suspected – Labour are still fighting the ghosts of the 80’s. HC is obsessed with the socialism of the past. Move along shall we?

    Comment by pkiwi — October 29, 2008 @ 4:10 pm

  2. IF Key really was involved in one of the countries most notorious financial crimes and then lied about it then I so no reason whatsoever to ‘move on’, anymore than I think we should ‘move on’ from Winston Peters various outrages. But that’s a big if. The fact that this is happening in the second to last week of the campaign suggests to me that it doesn’t have legs. We shall see.

    Comment by danylmc — October 29, 2008 @ 4:15 pm

  3. so it had better stand up to scrutiny better than some of the other attacks they’ve made against Key

    Haha… that’s satire again right? If even some of the mud sticks Labour wins; if the attack has substance behind it that’s just a bonus.

    Comment by gazzaj — October 29, 2008 @ 4:17 pm

  4. But if they have been sitting on it for so long it just proves that manipulation is more important than principle.
    And Winston the Obfuscator is the only punter who can back a racehorse without legs and still win. Seaford and chevaline anyone?

    Comment by pkiwi — October 29, 2008 @ 4:32 pm

  5. Agree with pkiwi here – public will now just see this as an election attack by labour. Some mud may stick, but must will just see it now as an attempt to throw mud regardless of whether factual or not, because labour has sat on this so long. If it was a real problem then it should have been some time ago. You could almost construct an agrument that by holding back information labour has actually being aiding and abetting fraud.

    The story has been in front of the public before, it may only have as much value to the public as Ian Wishart revealing he has been a rent boy for Heather Simpson.

    Comment by What would Hayek say — October 29, 2008 @ 5:32 pm

  6. Newsreader: Will this hurt Key?

    Political Editor: It’s not a good look, but I don’t think so.

    Viewer: Any chance you could tell us what it’s about instead of telling us what we’ll think?

    Comment by sammy — October 29, 2008 @ 5:53 pm

  7. My guess is that this is not a killing blow; the plan is probably to release some information, wait for Key to make some kind of uncategorical denial and then release more evidence that makes his denial look like a liar – that’s what will hurt him (they hope).

    Comment by danylmc — October 29, 2008 @ 6:58 pm

  8. Would be a good idea – has already worked with Ashcroft and the Tranzrail shares…

    Comment by StephenR — October 29, 2008 @ 8:01 pm

  9. I skimread the Herald article and didn’t understand a word of it. I reckon this’ll be one of those things that never gets explained properly, only a small percentage of people ever figure out, so it’ll just reinforce preconceived ideas, which might play either way.

    Comment by gazzaj — October 29, 2008 @ 8:13 pm

  10. Wasn’t there a criminal investigation on this – and people went to jail?
    If Key was criminally involved and didn’t get caught, it doesn’t say much for the police or SFO.

    In fact they said he was one of a large number of INNOCENT people who happened to be questioned because they worked for Elders at one time.

    Comment by DyannT — October 29, 2008 @ 10:24 pm

  11. Sheeeeeee-it. That is all.

    Comment by Phil — October 30, 2008 @ 8:10 am

  12. Just last night I resigned myself to voting Labour. After this that’s unlikely.

    So the guy who investigated this says Key had no involvement. Did Clark know this or did she not care to find out. Either way she looks incredibly sleazy. She’s the one who comes out of this with her crediblity in tatters anbd that has been a major asset for Labour.

    Comment by Neil — October 30, 2008 @ 9:17 am

  13. Neil – yes she knew. The details came out in the papers last year, after Trevor Mallard used “H-Fee!” as an interjection in parliament.

    Comment by malcolm — October 30, 2008 @ 10:36 am

  14. And here was me just starting to wonder if Labour just didn’t rock the boat some polling trends might give them a chance.

    Not so much now. It’s not like contradicting himself has even done any damage before, and it’s certainly being played as if they were accussing him of actually having done something.

    Comment by lyndon — October 30, 2008 @ 11:07 am

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