The Dim-Post

March 8, 2014

That is not it at all

Filed under: Politics — danylmc @ 6:17 pm

John Key was on The Nation this morning and Paddy Gower set him up something horrible.

The last week in politics has been all about National attacking David Cunliffe setting up a secret trust to funnel donations for his leadership campaign. National (a) pointed out that this was blatant hypocrisy because Cunliffe had spent years complaining about National’s use of secret trusts and (b) indicated that Cunliffe had a hidden agenda because the public didn’t know the identity of the people donating to him.

Now (a) is fine. Cunliffe was a total fucking hypocrite. He deserved to have his face rubbed in shit and that’s exactly what happened. But National really went to town on point (b). Who were the undeclared donors? Kim Dotcom? The unions? Why wouldn’t Cunliffe say? What was he hiding?

Gower invited Key to repeat all of those questions on The Nation and then pointed out that National had used dinners at an Auckland restaurant to funnel anonymous donations into the National Party to the tune of $165,000. Gower asked of the Prime Minister: ‘Given your demands to know who Cunliffe’s anonymous donors are, shouldn’t you tell us who your anonymous donors are?’

‘No fucking way,’ was the approximate answer, and twitter this afternoon has been a firestorm of National lickspittles insisting that National’s anonymous donations are NOT THE SAME THING. They are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT! I understand that the thresholds are different and that everything National did was within the rules but that doesn’t get around the problem that they’ve been railing against anonymous political donations all week when they’ve spent the past few years raking in huge sums of money in anonymous political donations.


  1. Butbutbut, for years my trusted fellow lefties have all insisted that Paddy Gower *is* one of those Tory lickspittles! They can’t *all* be wrong, so clearly this is all part of a cunning plan by the mainstream media machine of oppression. If only we could figure out what it was…


    Comment by Lew (@LewSOS) — March 8, 2014 @ 6:25 pm

  2. Trusts are set up specifically to create anonimity, I don’t think fundraisers are.

    But if fundraisers are seen on that light then that would make a lot of donations anonymous.

    It sounds a bit silly to me – if a business person makes money and then donates to a party do they have to declare who they made the money from?

    Maybe this is being used to create anonimity but countering it might be problematic.

    Comment by NeilM — March 8, 2014 @ 6:40 pm

  3. The difference between David Cunliffe and John Key is when Cunliffe gets it wrong, he fronts up and puts it right. John Key is just a hypocrite.

    Comment by James D — March 8, 2014 @ 6:42 pm

  4. Fundraising dinners are the worst of all worlds when it comes to “anonymous” donations.

    The donors are hidden from the general public, but the politicians know precisely who the donors are. They had dinner with them.

    Indeed there was probably a dinner conversation about what the donors think “ought to be done” by the politicians.

    Comment by RJL — March 8, 2014 @ 6:54 pm

  5. Nice to see National finally screwing things up the way Labour have consistently for the last five years. What colossal idiot thought anonymous donations, of all things, would be a good thing for National to try and take the moral high ground on?

    Comment by Psycho Milt — March 8, 2014 @ 7:40 pm

  6. but but but Cunners and Labour aren’t complete tools, look at that nasty National party and evil Key.

    Comment by toby — March 8, 2014 @ 8:01 pm

  7. Key isn’t an idiot, as some people here like to point out. So the fact that he felt comfortable making hypocritical attacks all week maybe suggests that complaints of unequal treatment in the past weren’t unfounded.

    Also of note the two different narratives here:
    Cunliffe uses trusts hypocritically. Therefore he’s incompetent and unfit to lead!
    Key uses trusts hypocritically. Therefore the media aren’t biased and everything is fine!

    Comment by pete — March 8, 2014 @ 8:21 pm

  8. I’ve been following this wee narrative the past few days thinking National’s use of trusts to hide donors has been brazen. It’s one of the many reasons I can’t vote for them. I don’t vote for Cunliffe, either.

    Comment by Steve W — March 8, 2014 @ 9:43 pm

  9. Was Astle required to make known the guests when he made the aggregate donation and did he?

    Comment by NeilM — March 8, 2014 @ 9:49 pm

  10. NeilM:

    No and no. Parties are required to make the disclosures, not the donors themselves. No-one in any of these stories has completely failed to declare anything they were required to, as far as we know.

    Comment by Steve D — March 8, 2014 @ 11:08 pm


    Comment by kalvarnsen — March 9, 2014 @ 2:46 am

  12. I think you will find National has been having a laugh about the party that has railed against the use of trusts and American bagmen and even changed the law has a leader who thinks its a good idea to use a secret trust and take donations from wealthy business people and one from overseas.

    Cunliffe himself in parliament calling national a corrupt government propped up by a vote from someone who took secret donations and didn’t declare them and had a brain fade.

    Comment by David — March 9, 2014 @ 11:32 am

  13. The Paddy interview was the first time I have seen any interviewer hold Mr Key to task. And Mr Key looked distinctly uncomfortable and bereft of his jokey responses to deflect. And worst insult for Mr Key was to suffer being called “tricky.” Fancy my applauding Paddy though!!!

    Comment by xianmac — March 9, 2014 @ 11:46 am

  14. Waiting for Labour to say Donkey Deep, then the political universe will have gone a full cycle. And the number of people who can be fucked voting diminishes even more.

    Comment by Grant — March 9, 2014 @ 11:56 am

  15. Cue Paula Bennett’s announcement of National’s new welfare initiative.

    Comment by hkh75 — March 9, 2014 @ 12:45 pm

  16. We really DO have to hold our noses when we vote, don’t we.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — March 9, 2014 @ 1:08 pm

  17. This interview with John Key was quite searching. I guess he came over quite well, though, because it seemed to save him from those shares & trusts that he’d forgotten about, plus firmly cemented him as a “good bloke”:

    There may be a lesson in there for Cunnie?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — March 9, 2014 @ 4:44 pm

  18. Mind you, to come back to the interview – the fact that Gower managed to ambush Key with all the subtle guile of a clown wearing a drum kit on his back is astonishing, given that Key has been PM for almost six years now. Tell me a lot about how easy the media is on Key.

    One other thing – I’ve been out and about a lot this past few weeks and people don’t care about this scandal, beyond the Key/Cunliffe/Collins thing just reinforcing all politicians are rogues and scoundrels. I guess National might be the marginal winner, insofar as putting about that all politicians are corrupt will increase voter cynicism and help suppress the turnout.

    Comment by Sanctuary — March 10, 2014 @ 11:26 am

  19. It’s pretty sad state of affairs when an incumbent government can anticipate riding a wave of apathy back onto the benches for a third term.

    It does say more about the state of the opposition than anything else though.

    Comment by Gregor W — March 10, 2014 @ 12:15 pm

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