Good day to you.
My name is the Prime Minister. I just wanted to speak about a few things that have been on my mind over the course of this week. They are in no particular order and neither am I.
Those people who are saying that I am in regular contact with Camoron Slater need to consider the facts as they are laid out by me. I can categorically state at this point that I have maybe had contact with him a couple of times over the course of the last few months. I can’t really remember. I get a million or so texts per week. I can’t be expected to remember each one, who they were from, and when they were sent. I don’t even remember the last time Bronagh texted.
In any case, every right-minded person knows contact involves direct man-touching. Camoron and I have not engaged in any direct man-touching for quite some time. Plus, I didn’t understand the question when it was being asked in parliament because there was a bit of noise so I thought I was talking about dairy subsidies or the TPP or something. I replied “no” and I should have replied, “Yes. It was only a few hours ago. I remember clearly now. We were talking about the Labour Party death cult.”
There are many other people, and some of the same people, who are calling on me to resign following the release of the Gwyn Report into the use of SIS information to discredit Phil Goff. I will not be resigning. There is absolutely nothing wrong in what I’ve done and I’m absolutely happy with where I am on this. Look, I can’t be held responsible for any of the goings on in my office, the SIS, or anywhere else I have ministerial or prime ministerial responsibility for.
It’s important you know we have clear guidelines for these types of situations. Yes I am the head of all these places, yes I am at many of the meetings where we discuss the future direction, media strategies and policy ideas for these organisations, but I’m never listening. Quite often it’s because I’m not wearing my prime minister’s hat. I might be wearing a fedora or a New York Giants cap or something. If I’m not wearing my prime minister’s hat then I’m not allowed to listen or take part in the meeting. In fact, the people in the meeting often tie me to the chair and put duct tape over my mouth so that I’m not even tempted to engage. It’s a very clear, well organised balance based on hats.
At the end of the day I cannot be held responsible for anything that I have responsibility for. Because of my love of different kinds of hats.
Therefore I will not be resigning from anything.
The Prime Minister
PS: I’d like to welcome back Dame Judith Collins back to the National Party. She has been a tireless servant of the black arts, killing endangered beasts and drinking the blood of the innocents since she was born to the son of a witch during the Middle Ages around 1278. The National Party is nothing without her unique style of passive-aggressive blood-lust.
We were all there watching on election night. Watching when a compulsive fibber was re-elected to the premiership and promptly promised to, “work for all New Zealand.” Yet another mistruth. But who’s counting?
One of the twitter conversations I followed on the night but didn’t engage with because I was so furious (at the result, not the conversation) was between a few teachers.
We were discussing how, now that National had the “mandate,” the entire education system was going to be thrust into a state of flux as all manner of weird policies were thrust onto the education system.
This weirdness was exemplified a few days later when a 12-year-old was appointed Undersecretary to Education. What the hell is that? It sounds like one of those double entendre from a Carry On film (“Ooo err Madam Undersecretary…. etc).
With ACT now a joke political party, the term sock puppet pops into my head whenever I hear them. Actually, when I think about it, I have not heard from them since around about the time David Seymour gave his maiden speech to parliament promising to, “lift all New Zealanders out of poverty by reducing their employment conditions, wages and housing opportunities.” I’m paraphrasing, but I think that was the general gist.
Back to our discussion. The idea was that no matter which government was in, or which policy was being implemented, nothing much changed in our day-to-day lives as middle class public servants.
At the time I thought about this and I thought that was possibly fair enough, but the longer time has gone on, the more and more I realise what an utter cop-out this argument is. It’s the argument of the people who voted National but don’t like their policies.
Every single National-led government since I’ve been born – Muldoon, Bolger, Shipley & this current bunch (too young to remember Holyoake) – have implemented policies that have had a huge impact on a vast proportion of the population.
- Cutting benefits – let’s reduce the income of the poorest people in New Zealand. That won’t have any impact on anyone. I’m sure nobody will resort to crime to cover the money missing from their weekly balance so they can feed their kids.
- Student loans – let’s make students borrow to pay for their education. That won’t have any impact on the people graduating. I’m certain they will all stay in New Zealand and not go overseas so they don’t have to pay their loans back.
- National standards – let’s measure every child in New Zealand against a set of arbitrary figures that we promise will not be used to measure schools against each other but then we publish them on a publicly accessible website and say “we don’t like what stuff.co.nz are doing, but . No… this won’t impact on the teaching profession. Labelling a student “well below” for the entire time they are at primary school will have absolutely no impact on them, their families or their teachers.
- Novopay – let’s outsource our payroll. That will have very little impact on anyone. At all. Because the people at Talent2 said so.
These are just a few policies. There are many, many more (90 day stand-down period anyone?) that have huge impacts on people’s lives.
Here are the stupidly weird things that are being proposed by this government (and by proposed I mean they are being put out for “consultation” with a committee of rubber stampers before being foisted on a beleaguered profession.
Hekia Parata has started making noises about the decile rating system. She was making these noises before the election. She likes talking about it being “messy” and “misunderstood.” The government want to move to a different funding model they have more control over. How can they achieve this? By linking funding to achievement. Your school will get money based not on the socio-economic standing of the residents within your zone, but the performance of those children against an arbitrary standard.
No. That won’t have any impact on the teaching profession.
How will schools work if this funding model is implemented? Well, if my funding levels required me to have more and more students achieving at the National Standard, then that’s precisely what would happen.
In the US where this policy has been in place for a while we have results fraud going on and special needs (or ESOL) students being excluded from even being assessed against standards in the first place (First rule of statistics: always boost your statistics by removing statistics that wreck your statistics).
People need security. If you are going to take their security away they start making stupid decisions. If my pay is going to be partly decided by the performance of the students in my class, then some decisions I might start to make could possibly be in the best interests of me. If my school is going to be funded partly on the basis of the performance of students against the National Standards then perhaps those students are going to perform awesomely against the standard.
As someone pointed out the other day, the year they bring in “value added” performance pay will be the year we have a massive spike in our National Standard results.
For whatever reason, well over 45% of people who turned out to vote that day in September decided to re-elect a lying money trader (is there any other kind?) to the premiership. If you are going down that route, then you need to expect the policies you are going to get are in line with those of a lying money trader.
Those from an industry that contributed the Global Financial Crisis should never have any control over any decision-making processes at any level of government.
I’m not going to apologise. There’s nothing to apologise for. I have done nothing wrong.
Yes I suppose a few people in my office may have possibly been in contact with people in Camoron Slater’s office, but I had no idea this was happening. The report says as much.
You just have to read the report to understand how exonerating it is. It clearly states that nothing at all has happened. I have never seen Camoron Slater. The National Party has never met Camoron Slater. The SIS does not get in contact with my office letting it know information that we’ve asked for to embarrass the leader of the opposition. Jason Ede has never rung up Camoron Slater and told him exactly what to write in his Official Information Act request which he’s then received immediately by email. Warren Tucker is not a member of the National Party.
This is clearly a smear by Nicky Hager. It’s an outrageous smear. I don’t even know Camoron Slater. How can I call someone I don’t know? Why would someone in my office call someone I don’t know? That just doesn’t make sense.
In fact, I have nothing to apologise for because I’ve never done anything. Nothing at all. I’ve never done anything. In fact, I’m yet to be born.
That is why I’m not going to apologise. I’ve done nothing wrong because I DON’T EXIST.
After an exhaustive inquiry following the release of Dirty Politics during the 2014 election campaign, the office of the Speaker has released some new national standards for politicians.
The Right Honourable David Carter, Speaker of the New Zealand Parliament, today released a raft of new standards that he says politicians will have to meet if they wish to stay in parliament. Contained within the release are a list of behaviours politicians will now be measured against. The measurements will be made through a range of tests to be carried out by carefully trained individuals with results then being immediately released to the media so politicians can be ranked on the basis of these arbitrary scores.
A “how to” list for new politicians has been released to the media and as we are a blog and full of many, many hard-hitting newly labelled journalists, we can now print that list for you because, after all, modern journalism is all about the cut and paste.
Behaviours: (to be shown within the first 6 months of commencing the new parliamentary term)
- Lying: with the electorate so strongly voting for a coalition led by liars it’s important that any new politician exhibits this behaviour as soon as possible. There are many ways to lie. Take a leaf out of the Prime Minister’s book, for example, and either forget everything that ever happens to you or, as he more often does, start with a slight mis-truth and then either get nearer to or further away from the truth depending on the questions being asked by your media chums.
- Measurement (metaphorical): extremely flammable trousers, extended proboscises.
- Nepotism: with so many jobs in the office of any incoming politicians it’s important to remember the best place to find people to fill these vacancies is within your own family.
- Measurement (actual): one family member – 5 points; two family members – 15 points; three or more family members – 25 points and a select committee posting.
- Conflicts of Interest: as many politicians come to parliament having engaged in a vast range of business activities. It’s important for new politicians to protect and even enhance their interests whilst in parliament (who knows when you might be voted out – particularly if you’re a list MP or used to be in the Shipley government). If, for example, you have vast interests in an irrigation company, it is considered extremely wise to ingratiate yourself with the Minister for Primary Industries. Better yet, become the Minister for Primary Industries. The closer you can be to the decision-making process, the more likely you are to have a positive influence on decisions being made that could impact upon your business and the un-taxed income of your family.
- Measurement (metaphorical): fingers in pies.
- Bullying: having set the standard for all politicians over the last term, National Party leadership team John Key and Steven Joyce have made names for themselves through their ability to sidestep a range of thorny issues by calling the person disagreeing with them an idiot, a fruit loop, loopy, a dork, an egg, and egg-burger, a nerd, a dufus, a dingus, a knob, a muppet, a halfwit, a nincompoop, an imbecile, a simpleton, a clod, or a dullard. Or a moron. If you can call someone enough names enough times during a debate in parliament, or during a press conference following the release of a damning report of some kind, it is believed that you will be praised throughout the right-wing blogosphere. Get them on side and you will either become hugely successful for a short number of years because of a terminatory nick-name or be ruined. Or both.
- Measurement (actual): how many times you can use the phrase, “Shut up, you dick” during a parliamentary debate.
The new national standards for politicians will be in place across the course of the current parliament.