The Dim-Post

November 10, 2010

This rough magic I here abjure

Filed under: blogging,Politics — danylmc @ 3:18 pm

NZPA carries the story of National Minister Jonathan Coleman introducing legislation to the house with a ten minute long speech that actually described a different bill introduced three years ago. Normally I’d get a kick out of something like this – or the artlessness of Pete Hodgeson’s latest smear – but instead they just feed into my deepening depression about the mediocrity of New Zealand’s political class and the culture surrounding it, related to my wider despair at the state of the economy.

Someone once asked Jonathan Lynn – co-author of Yes Minister – why his show never dealt with events in the House of Commons. He replied:

there was not a single scene set in the House of Commons because government does not take place in the House of Commons. Some politics and much theatre takes place there. Government happens in private. As in all public performances, the real work is done in rehearsal, behind closed doors. Then the public and the House are shown what the government wishes them to see.

In our current situation we have a government that knows much about theatre and politics and almost nothing about government and an opposition that probably knows much about government, but in vain because they know nothing about politics or theatre.

Anyway, I’ve reached the point where it’s all too banal even to laugh at so I’m taking a break from blogging for an indeterminate period.

Update: Thanks for your emails, tweets, comments everyone. Your support is very humbling. Just a few points in reply.

1. No, I am not going to Mali.

2. It’s just a break but already feels pretty good so I expect it’ll be for at least a few months, barring some unforeseen sea change in national politics.


  1. Internet’s probably a bit unreliable in Mali anyway.


    Comment by Lew — November 10, 2010 @ 3:22 pm

  2. Rest well, you have done well and all has been much appreciated and a big thanks for the laughs…

    Comment by Pdogge — November 10, 2010 @ 3:22 pm

  3. Bugger.

    Comment by Bearhunter — November 10, 2010 @ 3:32 pm

  4. I hope you return at some point, reinvigorated and with parodies that slice and dice through the Enzed scene. Thanks for everything you’ve done so far.

    Comment by Ataahua — November 10, 2010 @ 3:37 pm

  5. Cheers Danyl. Your Dim Post has been awesome (on top of your mad science experiments, book reading, husband duties etc) – take care brave soldier

    Comment by k.jones — November 10, 2010 @ 3:38 pm

  6. Hope the indeteriminate period be short. And yes, hopefully, due to an increase in the worthwhileness of politics.

    You will be missed.

    Comment by lyndon — November 10, 2010 @ 3:39 pm

  7. Hope this isn’t a reflection on other aspects of your life grinding you down also (PBRF for example), but best regards, and thankyou.

    Comment by Sam — November 10, 2010 @ 3:42 pm

  8. I can’t blame you, Danyl. So, have a good break.

    But I suspect (hope) you’ll be back, if only because election year will offer too many tempting targets to resist.

    Comment by sammy — November 10, 2010 @ 3:43 pm

  9. Along with Lew, I wish you the best while you spread the Lord’s Word in Mali.

    Comment by George D — November 10, 2010 @ 3:49 pm

  10. Hey Danyl,

    The Dim-Post has been awesome. Best of luck with your future pursuits outside the blogging world.

    Comment by Phil — November 10, 2010 @ 4:17 pm


    Comment by dpf — November 10, 2010 @ 4:23 pm

  12. O farewell,
    Farewell the neighing steed, and the shrill trump,
    The spirit-stirring drum, th’ ear-piercing fife;
    The royal banner, and all quality,
    Pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war!

    Remember, the thing they hate MOST is being laughed at!

    Comment by Neil — November 10, 2010 @ 4:29 pm

  13. You need to keep in mind, Danyl, that there is a lot of crap on the net and people come to this blog daily for some refreshment, entertainment and enlightenment.

    Please don’t go for long. Your people need you.

    Comment by radar — November 10, 2010 @ 4:29 pm

  14. Your writing is an excellent antidote to Stuff et. al – I really enjoyed reading your posts.

    All the best.

    Comment by Lissa — November 10, 2010 @ 4:38 pm

  15. Sad to see you go Danyl. But can we ask that DPF and the Standard follow suit, although I guess wingnuts on all sides of the spectrum have to go somewhere….

    Comment by max — November 10, 2010 @ 4:43 pm

  16. Here’s hoping your blogging habit is too hard to give up…

    Comment by Leopold — November 10, 2010 @ 4:45 pm

  17. what am I supposed to do now? . . .

    well so long (for now) and thank for all the fish

    Comment by nommopilot — November 10, 2010 @ 4:48 pm

  18. endless days of uninterrupted media-corp output stretch our bleakly before me.
    please don’t go.

    Comment by Megan — November 10, 2010 @ 4:51 pm

  19. we need a local Obama. someone centre-left who can rise above the partisan tribalism. I did by accident however see a bit of Parliament TV the other day and Grant Robertson and Phil Tywford didn’t quite make me want to destroy our pre-GST rise flat-screen splurge.

    Comment by NeilM — November 10, 2010 @ 5:00 pm

  20. This is bad for Phil Goff.

    Comment by Jake — November 10, 2010 @ 5:08 pm

  21. Sorry to see you go, and hope you’ll be back, with your blood pressure suitably lowered !

    Comment by Brent — November 10, 2010 @ 5:19 pm

  22. Can’t you just do what our national broadcaster does: trawl your archives for the best bits and repost them? If I read only one thing in a day (often) I read this blog.

    You provide a public service and I shall be writing to my MP to complain.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — November 10, 2010 @ 5:32 pm

  23. A little part of the internet died today…

    This is bad for Phil Goff….

    Dim Post Mt Albert cell is officially disbanded, call the printers cancel the t-shirts…

    Best wishes with the new family and stuff….

    Over and out.

    Comment by andy (the other one) — November 10, 2010 @ 5:54 pm

  24. Something else we can blame on Peter Dunne, who has had the decency to admit that the slip-up his fault. But your absence is an unwelcome unintended consequence. All the best and we all await your return. No pressure.

    Comment by Stephen Stratford — November 10, 2010 @ 6:10 pm

  25. This is bad for Phil Goff.

    Screw Goff. This is bad for ME.

    Please return soonish

    Comment by gazzaj — November 10, 2010 @ 6:15 pm

  26. Oh no.

    I guess this means the terrorists have won. Again!

    Comment by Thomas Beagle — November 10, 2010 @ 6:42 pm

  27. No please dont.

    Comment by David — November 10, 2010 @ 7:00 pm

  28. Danyl wrote: “Anyway, I’ve reached the point where it’s all too banal even to laugh at so I’m taking a break from blogging for an indeterminate period.”

    This is exactly the sort of mealy-mouthed justification I would expect from someone who had decided to follow a call from God to go to Mali, but didn’t feel quite ready to come out and say that that was what he was doing.

    oh, and when you’re in Timbuktoo, please say hi to the Mister Men for me!

    Comment by kahikatea — November 10, 2010 @ 7:06 pm

  29. This is the first time I’ve read this blog and left it more depressed than when I arrived.


    Comment by Lance — November 10, 2010 @ 7:12 pm

  30. “Anyway, I’ve reached the point where it’s all too banal even to laugh at so I’m taking a break from blogging for an indeterminate period.”

    I really don’t blame you…. politics has become so depressing it bores me now. Anyway you’ll be back… they always come back (see Chris Trotter).

    And don’t stay away too long Dim as Mali is not that great!

    Comment by K2 — November 10, 2010 @ 7:13 pm

  31. Hear hear, gazzaj.

    Comment by Ataahua — November 10, 2010 @ 7:29 pm

  32. So is this some kind of John Galt blogging thing?
    Cactus Kate seems to have withdrawn from blogging as well.
    Where have you all gone?
    Is it good there?

    Comment by GN — November 10, 2010 @ 7:40 pm

  33. Damn. You and David Farrar (and to a lesser extent Russell Brown) are essential reading, sane and have a sense of humour. But, once it becomes treadmill it is time to get off. You don’t seem to have had your usual sense of glee recently. Good luck.

    Comment by Tinakori — November 10, 2010 @ 7:44 pm

  34. Hmm. Politics just got a little less funny.

    Comment by IrishBill — November 10, 2010 @ 7:51 pm

  35. All I can say is, you’d bloody better be taking a break!

    If this “I shall be leaving you for now” ploy is just a way of trying to whip up a bit of adoring recognition, then bad blogger. Bad!

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — November 10, 2010 @ 7:53 pm

  36. surely you’ll have finished marking soon. No need to take out your frustrations with undergrads on us.

    Comment by NeilM — November 10, 2010 @ 8:05 pm

  37. But, but, but how long will this indeterminate period be? A day? Please say a day.

    Comment by Guy Smiley — November 10, 2010 @ 8:06 pm

  38. Not even some posts on your veges? (The plants, not the undergrads.)

    Comment by Clunking Fist — November 10, 2010 @ 8:17 pm

  39. maybe it’s that ol rock n roll trick of walking off stage and waiting for the crowd to go wild for an encore –

    actually if they had these guys fronting I’d be tempted to go

    Comment by NeilM — November 10, 2010 @ 8:18 pm

  40. Satire redux: The best of the best

    Comment by Ataahua — November 10, 2010 @ 8:23 pm

  41. Hope you come back when labour have grown some balls.

    Comment by 'sup — November 10, 2010 @ 8:26 pm

  42. Danyl didn’t get the change he voted for…

    Comment by Me — November 10, 2010 @ 8:27 pm

  43. Peter Jackson has already made the movie with a CGI Jimmy Stewart playing the role of Danyl

    made of course in Mali because of various local disputes.

    Comment by NeilM — November 10, 2010 @ 8:37 pm

  44. that’ll make the blog what, two years old?

    this isn’t because i emailed you with a place you could get pseudoephidrine is it? because i won’t be responsible the drug habit that killed DimPost.

    Comment by Che Tibby — November 10, 2010 @ 8:38 pm

  45. Danyl, your posts have shown a shrewder understanding of New Zealand current affairs than any other blogger. But what is to become of us, your loyal readers? True we can console ourselves with Poneke and Fundypost; but they are not daily posters. What else is there? Public Address has long been in decline, and is now merely a forum for the damaged and the bewildered to parade their banalities. This is a sad day.

    Comment by Percy Flage — November 10, 2010 @ 8:40 pm

  46. You dun well,mate. Take a well deserved kick back and relax.
    Hopefully you will return, recharged and sparking.

    I have to agree the political landscape is pretty bloody depressing
    It does not matter whether one looks at it from below, over, right, left,
    east, west, north, south,

    The election could prove to be interesting.

    Certainly if National wins a secure majority then there will be fireworks as their, as yet undisclosed, agenda is enforced upon us (for our own good, of course).

    Mind you Labour has to get over “chewing gum” tax cuts, dog ear chipping, daylight saving, light bulbs, shower heads, a collapsing defence force, lower alcohol drinking age, increased tax on fortified wines, OH! I a;most forgot braying longdrops et al.

    Let us not forget the attempt to subjugate ourselves to john howard’s regulations on health food supplements. Is there anyone that Labour has not pissed off?

    At the moment it looks like the Nats are going to reduce the defence force even more.

    All parties face a a very fragile world economy.

    It took until 1939 (the start of world war two) to really start the devastated eueopean and american economies to get moving. A good ten years after the 1929 us stockmarket crash.

    It will be interesting to see what the election brings.

    Comment by peterlepaysan — November 10, 2010 @ 9:04 pm

  47. Youll be back tomorrow Danyl.

    They always are, Poneke, Kotare

    As that famous 70’s song says (seeing as pop culture forms a big part of your blog), ‘you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave…’

    “The election could prove to be interesting.”

    Understatement of the year.

    Comment by millsy — November 10, 2010 @ 9:27 pm

  48. Meh. I’m going to read Arts & Letters Daily and lolcatz.

    So long and thanks for all the fish.

    Comment by Conor Roberts — November 10, 2010 @ 9:43 pm

  49. damn- im new to blog-reading, and have only found this one in the past 6 weeks- and its my favourite! hope that you are inspired to return soon…

    Comment by mutyala — November 10, 2010 @ 9:48 pm

  50. I’d like to say something witty or deeply meaningful, but all I can think of is I’ll miss your blog heaps. Hope you’re back soon.

    Comment by Roger Parkinson — November 10, 2010 @ 10:40 pm

  51. Not concerned. You will torment your friends and family with your opinions so terribly that they will demand that you start blogging again. Just you see if I’m not right.

    Comment by Russell Brown — November 10, 2010 @ 10:51 pm

  52. Thanks for all your hard work in keeping this blog enlightening and entertaining. You will be missed.

    Comment by McRad — November 10, 2010 @ 10:58 pm

  53. Danyl supports Nationals productivity initiatives in Govt departments by driving slacker public servants back to the coal face (away from the blog face).

    Weekly vege patch posts please.

    Comment by leon — November 10, 2010 @ 11:02 pm

  54. Aggh! Just when I had found a couple of quality blogs (with quality comments even)… ah well, take care and hope to read you again sometime.

    Comment by Adze — November 10, 2010 @ 11:09 pm

  55. Please come back.

    Everything bad about you I take back.

    Just as long as you have me back.

    Comment by Francisco Hernandez — November 10, 2010 @ 11:28 pm

  56. Oh please don’t go! We’ll eat you up! We love you so!

    Comment by Sif — November 10, 2010 @ 11:32 pm

  57. Thanks Danyl, you’ll be seriously missed by someone a long way from home who needs a sane persons insight on the doings in our slightly barmy land

    Comment by EuroKiwi — November 10, 2010 @ 11:40 pm

  58. Respect for your previous insights would suggest writing an additional come back. Understanding that you are really just an idealist at heart and can’t handle the realisation that incompetence exists at the heart of politics is much funnier.

    Comment by Phil Sage (sagenz) — November 11, 2010 @ 2:49 am

  59. Danyl is finally going Galt.

    The Gulch is in Mali isn’t it Danyl?

    Comment by OECD rank 22 kiwi — November 11, 2010 @ 3:49 am

  60. “an opposition that probably knows much about government, but in vain because they know nothing about politics or theatre.”

    This is the nicest thing you’ve ever said about Labour.

    Comment by bradluen — November 11, 2010 @ 7:02 am

  61. Enjoy summer Mr DML. Lets all take a break this season,….no that’s just being silly….

    Comment by Cnr Joe — November 11, 2010 @ 7:36 am

  62. Danyl… tell me its not true… you can’t leave us!!

    Comment by Kiwi Law Student — November 11, 2010 @ 8:11 am

  63. Thanks Danyl, for a fantastic blog.

    Are we to assume that Dimpost staff reporters have been made redundant?

    Comment by Jordan — November 11, 2010 @ 8:48 am

  64. Sorry to see you stop this blog – I have enjoyed it!

    Comment by Davd — November 11, 2010 @ 8:52 am

  65. Thanks for all the fish. Best wishes for the future, whatever you choose to do. Please keep having fun,

    Bruce Hamilton

    Comment by Bruce Hamilton — November 11, 2010 @ 9:20 am

  66. Damn you! Now I will have to do work before 9.30am. Thanks for everything.

    Comment by Helenalex — November 11, 2010 @ 9:34 am

  67. This is bad for me.

    All the best Danyl.

    Comment by TBwood — November 11, 2010 @ 9:51 am

  68. I can’t really add anything to the above, but my heart sank when I read this.
    Hope to see you back here soon!

    Comment by Ewan — November 11, 2010 @ 9:56 am

  69. Please think of the Dimpost staff reporters on their way to the dole queue. Sigh. This is the way the world ends … not with a bang but a whimper.

    Thanks for the quality satire, hopefully NZ politics will one day prove themselves worthy again of such mockery.

    Comment by philonz — November 11, 2010 @ 10:25 am

  70. RIP DIM POST – Fomenting Slick Mockery 2008-2010

    Comment by Sam — November 11, 2010 @ 11:01 am

  71. Noooo…. This blog has been a highlight of my mornings 😦
    But have a good break, and hope you come back sooner rather than later. We will need you pre-election.

    Comment by TidgeH — November 11, 2010 @ 11:06 am

  72. A break is often good. Gets the mind out of a rut, particularly any rut that is bumming you out. I’ve found it hard to get exercised about politics recently myself – the grinding of this recession demands I take my day job more seriously.

    Hoping to see you again. Happy Hiatus.

    Comment by Ben Wilson — November 11, 2010 @ 11:41 am

  73. Today, November 11, 2010 a date which will live in infamy, a bit of the Internet died. Ave et vale, Danyl I’ve immensely enjoyed your contributions so thank you for brightening my days.

    Comment by TerryB — November 11, 2010 @ 12:15 pm

  74. How sad! Anybody else think we should ask the state to pay Danyl a yearly stipend so he can sustain his blog writing? Could go under “improved mental health of public servants”

    Comment by LucyJH — November 11, 2010 @ 12:16 pm

  75. Well that really sucks, my ability to get an honest and amusing worded view on happenings in NZ has diminished, my bat cave in london has become a little more grey.

    Comment by Jeff Rosie — November 11, 2010 @ 12:53 pm

  76. You’re a class act, Danyl. Enjoy the break.

    Comment by Carol — November 11, 2010 @ 12:58 pm

  77. I’ll be looking for other things to read in the break, but I’ll have trouble finding anything as consistently good. I know why you might feel the need for a break, though. Hope it continues to feel good.

    Comment by Dr Foster — November 11, 2010 @ 2:09 pm

  78. You’ve been great. Thanks for all the yuks. And we all know that brilliant satire only comes from deep insight. Otherwise, I agree with Russell; after hearing “That’s nice dear” for the 30th time, you’ll be back blogging.

    Comment by Vibenna — November 11, 2010 @ 2:14 pm

  79. Sorry to hear of read of your hiatus. Hope you are able to rejuvenate. Best wishes.

    Comment by cctrfred — November 11, 2010 @ 2:17 pm

  80. When you skewered them, you sure skewered ’em – I’ll miss you, D. I’m searching my library for Kubler-Ross for the stages of grief to go through – no, I lie, I looked it up in Wikipedia.

    Comment by John Thomson — November 11, 2010 @ 5:55 pm

  81. Thanks for all the laughs you’ve raised. It must be hard to compete with life when it becomes satire but I hope that it won’t be long before you return with sharpened wit.

    Comment by homepaddock — November 11, 2010 @ 7:41 pm

  82. There goes my favourite blog then. Here’s hoping Russell Brown is right and your whanau forces your return – even if it is from Mali.

    Comment by Nathaniel Wilson — November 11, 2010 @ 10:31 pm

  83. You, sir, will be sorely missed. On the plus side, at least my productivity at work will improve.

    Enjoy your time out!

    Comment by Mako — November 11, 2010 @ 11:00 pm

  84. Time out. Lovely. Hope you’re not away too long. Enjoy your break.

    Comment by Ian — November 12, 2010 @ 6:47 am

  85. I heard the Dim Post was moving offshore because of some union trouble instigated by the Dim Post staff reporters. Others say that it has more to do with the weakness in Communaute Financiere Africaine franc and large tax breaks that Amadou Toumani Touré is offering.

    Who wants to prevent this tragedy by joining me in a lynch mob mentality type rally through the streets of Wellywood followed by the storming of a deserted state house, then drinks and nibbles at Matterhorn?

    If that fails – All the best in Timbuktu, Danyl.

    Comment by J Mex — November 12, 2010 @ 10:02 am

  86. We could rebuild him! We have the technology….

    Comment by Phil — November 12, 2010 @ 10:05 am

  87. So when is Andrew Geddis going to offer him a gig on pundit as an occassional satirist then? Danyl has to much to say to not want a platform every now and again…

    Comment by Sanctuary — November 12, 2010 @ 10:36 am

  88. Enjoy the Summer , Danyl.

    Comment by Gregor W — November 12, 2010 @ 1:27 pm

  89. Come back Danyl. Labour has been able to function as an effective opposition now! They got Pansy Wong!

    Comment by Francisco Hernandez — November 12, 2010 @ 4:37 pm

  90. This seems like The Dim-Post community’s best chance to share favourite posts from days gone by:

    I nominate the Gandalf recession story, and the one with a goose as Leader of the Opposition.

    Comment by Anon — November 12, 2010 @ 5:04 pm

  91. Pansy

    Comment by Cnr Joe — November 12, 2010 @ 5:43 pm

  92. You rapt in secret studies? I’m sure your library is dukedom large enough.

    Allusions to your heading aside, I had noticed you were finding it increasingly difficult to write satire. Tinakori’s comment about a sense of diminished glee sums it up. Hope you come back refreshed!

    Comment by Rob Hosking — November 13, 2010 @ 7:29 am

  93. This seems like The Dim-Post community’s best chance to share favourite posts from days gone by:

    My top three (in no particular order) would be:
    Waiting for Voter
    Rocks of Love

    Comment by Phil — November 13, 2010 @ 10:08 am

  94. Ahh lets not forget An interview with Hone Harawira.

    Tirangawhai Danyl.

    Comment by Andy C — November 13, 2010 @ 10:21 pm

  95. ‘Waiting for Voter’ was legendary – my all time favourite…

    Comment by Sam — November 14, 2010 @ 7:45 pm

  96. No way…

    NZ First Party Profile

    Founded In: Now there has been a great deal of lies, falsehood and innuendo spread about the founding of New Zealand First. This profile will deal with the plain cold facts and not the sterile, feeble minded nonsense spread about by the media in this country who are a bunch of smart-alec green tea-sipping ghouls, liars and pumpkin faced charlatans and that is the honest truth.

    Comment by J Mex — November 15, 2010 @ 1:34 pm

  97. My fav: Judith Tizard. The recent post “CTU launches charm offensive, desecrates grave of Sir Edmund Hillary” was pretty good.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — November 15, 2010 @ 1:55 pm

  98. So long Danyl… I will miss your humour and your insight. Your blog was a joy to read on all kinds of levels, not just the politics. All the best – cheers, Dave Mann 🙂

    Comment by Dave Mann — November 15, 2010 @ 11:02 pm

  99. Your blog has been on my must-read list for a while now Danyl, so I will miss your writing and hope for developments in NZ politics that cause you to arise from your slumber and satirise.

    Comment by Paul — November 16, 2010 @ 12:18 am

  100. Breaking news:
    Peter Dunne Party holds conference, announces policy, attacks Greens:

    Comment by Me — November 16, 2010 @ 9:55 am

  101. Come back , your the closest thing we have to an NZ version of the Daily Mash.

    Comment by Andy C — November 18, 2010 @ 10:54 pm

  102. My fav: John Key’s New York Diary:

    Comment by Owen — November 19, 2010 @ 7:53 pm

  103. I seem to be getting phantom tweets from you Danyl…what’s the story?

    Comment by LucyJH — November 21, 2010 @ 2:48 pm

  104. Two sighting of Danyl in the wild recently (Kiwiblog and RedAlert)…

    Comment by Sanctuary — November 22, 2010 @ 12:38 pm

  105. Linkage if you please, Sanctuary…

    Comment by Sam Finnemore — November 22, 2010 @ 4:07 pm

  106. Spending too much time online instead of beavering for the state eh Sanc.

    Comment by leon — November 22, 2010 @ 8:09 pm

  107. I missed this news until just now, very sorry to hear though it is hard to combine blogging with other activities – I also hope you’ll be back.

    Comment by Paul Williams — November 23, 2010 @ 6:21 pm

  108. [poke]

    has it been a month yet?

    Comment by Che Tibby — November 24, 2010 @ 8:44 pm

  109. a month of what?

    Comment by reg — November 25, 2010 @ 9:22 am

  110. Sundaes?

    Comment by Phil — November 25, 2010 @ 4:48 pm

  111. What’s with the disappearing post on Ian Wishart/Pike River? I feel a conspiracy theory about the conspiracy theorists coming on…

    Comment by Dr Foster — November 29, 2010 @ 1:58 pm

  112. Not disappeared, just moved down below this post, perhaps to indicate that the blog is still officially on hiatus?

    Comment by Sam Finnemore — November 29, 2010 @ 2:38 pm

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