Because it kind of sorta really mattered that no half-way credible economist or policy wonk I can think of believed a word of English and Cunliffe’s rosy projections of when the nation’s books would return to the black.
Their predictions were based on the Treasury forecasts, which Treasury emphatically stood by whenever they were questioned, and then revised less than a week after the election.
This can only mean one thing as far as I can see. Key knew of the device before it was discovered and that points to collusion between Key’s team and the journalist.
Why? well it sure took the media’s attention off anything Labour had to say in the last week leading up to the election and that, I think, was the whole point.
Right. So ‘the plan’ and their arrangement with Ambrose would go something like:
We’d like you to secretly record our conversation, in which we make several mildly embarrassing statements. Then take it to the media outlets you work for, but arrange it so they just report on the tape but don’t release it.
Then we’ll attack you and conduct a campaign of character assassination against you, accusing you of gutter journalism to make it all look believable. Then we’ll lay a complaint with the police -and rely on your discretion not to reveal this arrangement - and in response you file proceedings against us in the High Court. Then we’ll seek $14,000 court costs against you, again, just to make it all look really realistic. Deal?
Graeme, you should have been a logician. The sort who says, Yes, there appears to be at least one cow which appears on the side we can see to be black in these lighting conditions.
Graeme kind of reminds me of the Fair Witness profession in a Heinlein novel:
During the Christchurch town-hall debate I was google-chatting with a National Party press sec, and I said something along the lines of ‘I’m going to start a fake rumour that Cunliffe refused to release his costings to Goff and then tipped off the PM’s office.’ I didn't, but I occasionally fret that this got taken up and spread around.
Anyway, Labour released ‘the numbers’ about five days after the ‘show me the money’ moment so no, Goff didn’t have the numbers.
How’s this for an idle speculation:
what if the Act deal is that Key leaves after the election
I'm not sure if 'idle' is the word you're looking for . . .
According to Joyce, 81% agreed that there were more important issues to focus on, and only 13% said the so-called tape was worthy of further attention. This, said Joyce, was evidence that the matter was of interest only to those within the "Bowen Triangle", while the public was of a higher mind.
There's a gap between what people think they're supposed to think, and report back to pollsters and what they actually think and base their private voting behaviour on.
It's also the case that overall majorities aren't that important here. If 4% of National supporters switch their vote over to Winston Peters on the basis of this affair, then that's a strategic catastrophe for Joyce's party, no matter what the other 96% do.
If this develops into an actual feud with the HoS and its publisher, that's not exactly ideal for National, but they don't seem to be trying to avoid such an outcome. Quite the reverse.
Every press secretary knows that the public despises the media, even more so than politicians (especially a popular one like Key). So a protracted fight with a media outlet is a gift from heaven.
It's not hard to see how the contents of the tape could fall between the poles of evident public interest and unremarkable private chat and still be a significant political story.
No. But that's not how the HoS editor is describing it - the tape is 'breathtaking', 'a game-changer', that he's decided not to publish for reasons which are still rather vague.
Looks like he made a bad call. The Nats get to shit all over him but he didn't sell any extra papers.
I didn't think much of Johns' interview this morning. Either the tape is a 'game-changer', in which case he should have the balls to publish it, or it isn't, in which case he should just admit that it isn't in the public interest.
for the record, like (I think) many, I'm of the opinion that there seems to be a need for serious change within the system of student associations we currently have - there are far too many Joel Cosgrove's in the system as it stands, and as Paul Williams mentioned upthread, it obscures the really valuable work most associations do. But attacking them in this way is not going to lead to that reform - if anything, it will simply see a continuing decline in quality as revenues start to dry up and a vicious cycle around membership starts up. Reform is what we need in this space, not destruction.
This would have been a great and important conversation to have several years ago, when all of these points were still obvious and salient, and the massive flaws in the existing system didn't make it effortless for the unions' political enemies to destroy them.