GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – The Reptile Room



I stress, at the outset, that I’ve got nothing against reptiles. Some of my best friends are reptiles. Some say I am one, but I’m not really. I just emulate that ability to sit, stationary for hours in court, eyes unblinking, waiting, waiting, for that moment when a deft flick of the tongue will snag the prize.

Part of being reptilian is trying to be utterly economical. Evidence is the enemy in court. Without evidence there is nothing. Eradication of evidence ensures acquittal. A succinct script is the key and once the evidence is out, leaving it alone is best. Do not reframe it. Do no say it another cuter way. It’s like pulling money out of a pocket on a windy day to admire it. No good can come of it

Never create evidence. This can be done in a non-fraudulent way by simply talking about something which might otherwise never be discussed. There are some things we know we don’t know. We should therefore avoid them like ebola, or, perhaps a hapless splitter of a promising Left Wing Candidate’s vote. Never touch something unless you have to. That is economy.

Talking of waste-no-want-not, the bitter taste of earwax no doubt lingers for John Banks. It’s astonishing that he would have forgotten his composure and, in the Reptile Room, to have been so unguarded and vulnerable. His head may as well have well have been in a noose, there in the firelight, viewed by the eyes of unseen billion beyond the velvet black.

That Banks could have forgotten himself at that moment is perhaps understandable. He’d had a good run, decades of adept dodging had stood him in good stead, but there came a moment when his entire concentration was on a tiny amber smear on the end of his index finger; caught in his own cross-hairs he pulled the trigger. Banksy had gone from eating babies to eating himself. This was more than a sign of smoke in what would be an inevitable all-consuming fire.

Composure is everything in these situations. In the Reptile Room, there is indeed room for a disinterested examination of earwax, particularly at a time when some unexpected and damning evidence comes out. There are times when a reptile needs to appear nonchalant, nonplussed and not interested, but it must be carefully choreographed, lest a ruse be suspected. Often it’s better to just sit, very still with unblinking eyes, waiting for just one thing: The Kill Shot.

The Kill Shot carries its own messages. It shows respect. It shows that the termination is taken deadly seriously. Anything more is much, much less. The economy of action and emotion is evident and purposeful, for a mindful reptile would allow her quarry nothing less.

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It didn’t astonish me that Banksy would slip up. His time had come and his moment was unguarded.

But the spectacle of Kim Dotcom’s “Moment of Truth” compared with the reality of 20 September leaves me grateful for my instincts. I know not to let my jaw hang as slack as it feels. It’s such a bad look for a reptile. It conveys an impression of uncomprehending stupidity; a look which rarely has useful application.

Helen Kelly recently tweeted about KDC’s ego, sparking a response from me which bust 140 characters in an angry machine gun bust. The IMP/KDC bloc and the slack-jawed fools that believed the hype should demand some money back from their advisors and buy some tickets to the zoo, for surely there is more truth in the Reptile Room that on the on their stage.

In the Reptile Room, one does not announce a king hit. If it is indeed a fatal blow, you first read about it in the Death Notices. Anything else is playing with one’s quarry in a disrespectful way or, worse, an insincere one. That KDC’s immense ego would let him play disrespectfully with Kiwi politics is obvious. It is no quantum leap for a revolted public to transfer their repulsion on to any message he delivered. Indeed the Kim Dotcom brand is no longer a badge of freedom, but an ugly scar from a time when those who wear it should have known better.

To describe “The Moment of Truth” as a fizzer would be to do an injustice to damp squibs. They, at least, hold the prospect of being a cracker. KDC’s line-up had shit on their boots when they tramped onto the Auckland Town Hall stage. I won’t pretend to suggest I realised how significantly this sideshow would affect the election, but I did, at the time express absolute horror at the line up and the presentation.

Who was responsible for the sound mixing? KDC’s inane giggling should have been silenced. In fact, even a gecko knows that deception and appearances are everything. On this stage, displays of obscene wealth were of no use. After all, said the gecko to the skink, you don’t see the Exclusive Bretheren hogging the microphone at National Party gig. They are never seen.

Moving along the row of those present, Assange, bless his heart, was of negative value. He was fascinating, for sure, but this was The Moment of Truth, not a moment for fascination.

Less can be said for Amsterdam – a lawyer in the pay of Dotcom. At the risk of denigrating my sister reptiles, I’m almost reduced to acronyms. A glib Yankee lawyer down to do his client’s bidding in little ole Noo Zeeland. If you though a worse messenger than KDC could not be found, think again.

Moving along, there was Laille Harre – a politician, paid by KDC – up there being the master of ceremonies. On that stage she could not escape being seen as entirely partisan. A worse choice of MC could not have been made.

Greenwald and Snowden were the only authentic messengers on that stage and even they couldn’t play it straight. This wasn’t a talk show, it was something deadly serious for Kiwis. Snowden, despite his undoubted credentials needed to be a damn sight more earnest in his presentation. He needed to seem like he cared. Greenwald, again, with great credentials was so damn smug and pleased with himself that his credibility was greatly diminished. Being present on the stage with KDC’s employees diminished it further.

I imagine the spectacle of an earnest Snowden and Greenwald being interviewed by a right-leaning mainstream journalist. Their message was true. The sword of the mainstream media could not have hurt it. Yet they let a giggling man with a Joe 90 headset and his flunkies disembowel it under the spotlights.

If ever a good message was butchered by bad messengers, this was it. It not the Moment of Truth. It was the Moment of Death.

How could this monumental public relations nightmare have panned out? KDC says it’s his fault, but it’s not. I blame his grasping mates. They all thought the benefits that flowed from the association would outweigh any concerns about KDC’s dodgy past and naked agenda. They took his money, they massaged his ego and every one of them is diminished by it.

And it doesn’t matter how much of a jumped up little shit a journalist is, when a press secretary says that in the news, I for one question the depth of talent in the brains trust which ran that campaign.

Sure, it’s all very well to be wise after the event and, certainly my quietly expressed confidence about a favourable Left Wing election reflects embarrassing naivety. There’s no comfort in being in good company, indeed it makes it all the sadder as I look around the good people with heavy hearts as we face something far worse than we’ve had under MMP: a tory majority government.

And while there are no doubt many obvious lessons from the last few weeks, it seems that some failed to check the awful spill snake oil spill. Basic rules of the Reptile Room have been ignored: in the end it doesn’t matter if you’re drowned in snake oil or whale oil. Drowned is drowned.


Kelly Ellis,  former journalist and Labour Party candidate. Current lawyer grubs her living from the criminal justice coalface but dreams of being a better parent and more dutiful partner to her long-suffering family.



  1. Perhaps before we cast the first stones,…we could perhaps rid Labour of the neo liberal MP’s who have contributed greatly to the atrophy , division ,and hindering of the Labour party for 30 long years.

    That would be a good start .

    And perhaps also- since this election is not a good look for the ‘lizard room ‘ – Labour having had its lowest polling for about 90 years – , and having successfully destroyed another Left ally through those aforesaid neo liberal MP’s……that this coming internal vote to determine just who will lead Labour in future might just be a very opportune time to ponder just why in fact people who formerly voted Labour voted National instead.

    Not a good look to live in a glasshouse and throw stones either if your a lizard,……. IS IT.

    • The Reptile Room is a dangerous place for a little katipo. An ad hominem attack on Labour or me is about as relevant as me saying your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries. It does not transform KDC his paid cohorts into good messengers. Sorry.

      • Yeah and I had kippers on toast for breakfast too buddy…and that little Katipo is spelt with a capital K in case you haven’t noticed.

        Also it likes to stick a bit of poison into you when it bites.

        If you want to wax all poetic about IMP to cover up the Labour party’s GROSS failings and ineptitude for so long and try to use IMP as your bloody scapegoat instead of looking at why Labour was such a double crossing ,divided , and treacherous party on the Left ….well not only is that your subjective opinion – your also not that clever a ‘poet’ that we cant all see through that poorly veiled ,attempt at shifting the blame.

        I would suggest that instead of contributing to the tearing and backstabbing of other party’s on the Left you take a good hard look at the miserable fail that is now the Labour party.

        But then again….I guess that is a natural tendency to want a scapegoat when you stick a neo liberal stooge like Davis in to collapse your own party and loose the election at the same time . Well done , mate , bloody well done.

        • And shall I be more specific and clarify just what was the REAL motive behind that particular ill thought out stunt in TTT…..

          We all know that the National party is hell bent on signing us up to the TTPA agreement .

          We also know that Labour sits on the fence about it.

          We also know that it is the neo liberal faction within Labour that wants to sign up for it.

          And because there are long standing members in your caucus that are neo liberals holding key positions that have dictated internal party policy and opposed any real centre left positions and thus hamstrung any real progressive movement….

          That the REAL MOTIVE behind the obscene attack on IMP combined with the PM himself advising HIS supporters to back Labour’s Davis …is this….

          Hone and the IMP had to be KNEECAPPED because if they had gotten into parliament it would have been a major obstruction to any plans of signing the TTPA.


          • I am with you WK. If it was not for Dotcom, we would not know a single thing about the GCSB. Those who use the new knowledge to challenge the Prime Minister, this knowledge brought to us by Kim Dotcom, Greenwald, Snowden and Assange- have some nerve! No matter how the campaign or message has been delivered, the fact is we wouldn’t know about it if it wasn’t for the messengers. Because I don’t recall msm making it a priority at all. Nor TPPA or TISA for that matter. I-M said they stand against the TPPA. Mad RESPECT

          • @ WK – good response my friend. Absolutely spot on.

            Also let us not forget in the kneecapping of IMP, taking down Hone, Winston Peters was instrumental as well, as much as the Maori Party, Labour and National.

            That being the case, I’m beginning to think FJK had this jacked up with Winston prior to the election, promising the NZ First leader some goodies by way of concessions, if he was able to help cull the IMP out of the game!

            In today’s NZH, FJK stated he is looking at working with Winston! Pay off time for Winnie? You bet it is!

            Yep, CORRUPTION is alive and well, thriving through the Natsies! More DIRTY POLITICS, only this time it seems it’s about to become more prevalent spreading to the opposition, via Winston Peters and NZ First!

          • I kind of age with everyone here. Especially the bit about the sound mix and Dotcoms laughing. I think everything IMP did was deliberately to appeal to those who don’t vote – which is fine – but in that situation talking to the whole country or needed to be done now sensitively. All with the benefit of hind sight of course 🙂

  2. I’d say having said all that you and Labour could examine your “perhaps we’ll go with the TPPA and raise the super age” policies, and your inability to shut up your critisizing of other left factions. Kim Dot Com completely mis-read the New Zealand psyche. His inane giggling was annoying but that paled into insignificance as the messengers delivered. Why is how the message is delivered always more important than the message? Human condition I suppose.

    • Explain to me why such revelations had such a differant impact in the U.S.A?I do not give a shit as to how they were presented, I have read Greenwalds books & articles in Salon,I understand why he is a pulitzer prize winner & what that means.I do not read Whaleoil or give a fuck about Cannon.Our little country has such a narrow world view its fucking embarrassing.My whaunau are blue collar workers, we see the demise of the left as tragic & ditto the unions, not ready for your privliged sounding analys just yet…

      • With this majority tory government we can expect the unions and workers rights to be hammered into almost non existence.

      • 100% Donna,
        NatZ don’t respect anyone else but NatZ.

        They are truly the new extremists of the globe, and often privileged.

        The meek shall inherit the earth and it is only a matter of time before the day of reckoning.

        Keep cool as key and some enemies of his will clash someday, because you cant stamp all over people without causing harm.

        Someone will eventually spill the beans on him as the harsh new policies emerge this year.

        We will wait for the hurt to cause dissention among the blue ranks.

    • Yes, it’s such a shame that good messages can be destroyed by using the wrong messenger. For you and me Brigid, the message might have shone through, despite the delivery. But for the voting public, it was completely lost.

      • The voting public are , for the most part , morons . Dangle a frippery in front of their dull minds and they’ll be off like a charmed kitten with a head injury .
        Who could care for the details of KDC’s giggling really ? He was happy and excited . So what ? In most other countries where there are thinking humans , that’d a been taken in as part of a human being being human . Not in Nu Zild mate . All those guys up on stage ? They were all brilliant . They were pearls before swine sadly .

        • Who could care for the details of KDC’s giggling really ? He was happy and excited . So what ?


          So what.

          If a listener finds the giggling is more important than the message then I suggest the listener get a life, preferably outside Parliament.

            • “The election result speaks for itself.”

              There are two people in particular who would be in parliament now if it were not for the dirty tricks brigade, the bully boy gang beat-up tactics of the other parties. The fact that Hone held his own for so long, got such a high result even in the face of that gang bash-up, is testament to how deeply the electorate do feel for him and did want him to be there.

              Winston joining in at the last minute, giving directions for a final king hit, then jubilantly claiming that knock out blow afterwards, is so very sad to see.

          • The tradesman in the newly purchased flat downstairs banging on the pipes made it difficult for Assange to deliver his message.
            That didn’t help the overall presentation.

            Do tradespeople in inner London usually start before 8 on a Monday morning?

  3. Kims giggling put me off the whole thing…he shouldn’t have been main stage. Throughout the whole campaign IMPs campaign was upstaged by Kim instead of focusing on policies.
    Laila and Hone never had a chance.

  4. Yes, it’s true that KDC turned out to be a gift for the right. But its disingenuous to claim that his event was the moment of death. The right (which comprised the politicians, the msm, former head of the SIS and many others) had already weathered Hager’s contribution to the election and done that incredible US Republican Party trick of managing to successfully blame the opposition of what itself was guilty of. The real reason we have another National government is down to the lack of unity within the Labour Party and on the left as a whole, unlike on the right. The rowing boat pictures fully encapsulated that fact. Greens gifted Ohariu to Peter Dunne and also split the left vote in Auckland C and Chch C, to the benefit of National. Entrenched tribalism kept the two main parties of the left from working together, this is because Labour is full of Roger Douglass market fundamentalists. If Labour had not been so short sighted, this next parliament would include Hone and Laila Harre. Now Labour’s right are going to blame the defeat on moving too far to the left. Goff’s beloved TPP is alive and well. He’s rather see a National government signing that than a Labour government rejecting it – and therein lies why they lost.

  5. As someone who gambles I didn’t like the timing of both the release of Dirty Politic’s or the final push Moment of Truth. In election campaigning timing is everything and the timing of both these events were very poor.

    Dirty Politic’s starved our campaign of the issues that were hurting New Zealand. National had been very poor in the Regions outside of Christchurch & Auckland, even then a case could have been made that they were preforming piss weak there too. In our local campaign we had them on the back foot. Three days before the moment of madness John Key come to town and he was visibly nervous, his own invited guests of blue ribbon business crowd were subdued because they were hurting because National had done fuck all in this dirty ole blue ribbon town.

    Then first the horse shit email release to the NZH from the Warner Bro Chairman, how did that pin Key down? It didn’t, even I felt insulted our PM’s name getting soiled by a known conman I could just see the damage done right there. But wait it got worst with the sideshow a thousand of us got shut out on later that night. The rest is history the voting public turned on all other party’s outside of NZF and the legalise cannabis party and put their vote for ‘Team Snake Oil.’

    John Key got it wrong in his victory speech he should have said “six more years at least.”

  6. Chrissake. The only thing more purposeless than all the self flagellation that supporters of certain parties seem to be doing, in the misguided idea that it is really “self-reflection”, is thinking that “NZ” acted one way or another through some sort of collective reasoning.

    As has been pointed out earlier by comments on this site, there is individual psychoogy, there is organsiational psychology, and then their are random large groups of people who throughout history have done the most insane destructive things possible to themselves for no good or consciously shared reason.

    Bomber is off on holiday because he thinks he got it wong, fine take a break, but don’t be thinking that he got it wrong. From an individual’s point of view, he got it right. But “voters” as a group aren’t individuals. Trying to guess in advance what a group will do is like trying to guess who you might love later in life by scrying chicken guts while you’re still five years old.

    What we see on the surface, what we chose to call what we see on the surface, the values we ascribe to this imaginary group called Kiwis, voters or NZders… bears no relation whatsoever to the dynamics, actions and intentions or motivations underneath. You cannot see a trend in a poll and with accuracy say, aha, they like this party and hate that one. There is no evidence of rational participation, so don’t assume it.

    It is easy to disprove the article above on an individual scale: I wasn’t put off by giggling and I understood the message despite my personal bias. The author then claims NZders as a group are all put off by the cultural tendencies and appearance of the messenger. So am I not a NZder then? According to the author, i am without national identity. But they are wrong, so their statement is false becasue it cannot tell the truth of the matter.

    Throughout history it is clear that the choices and behaviour of large groups is not motivated by reason, or self interest, or morals as the individual knows these things to mean, and may also be motivated by a distortion of what we commonly know of (for want of a better word) as “God” or Nature. I group does not have a singular mind, it’s thoughts and motivations jump and change and become untraceable. Lighten up on yourselves.

    The only thing more silly than saying the Left got it wrong is saying that NZders voted National because they liked the policies, or the people in the party, or their hopes for the future, or the contents of their wallets or becasue they were nasty people. None of that can be proven and isn’t even useful. Such an unexpected obscure result in 2014 means that the 2017 election will be equally unexpected. Whatever is leading the larger group now, no one has yet figured out how to track it accurately.

  7. Wow, I really can’t believe this is on The Daily Blog. This is gong to be tl;dr but I hope you and at least some others read this. There’s a number of things to raise in response to this commentary, so I’m going to be pedantic and number them just to break it down:

    1. At the time when the Snowden leaks started appearing, and Greenwald, The Guardian, and later Washington Post and Der Speigel started a rolling blow by blow that represented a complete paradigm shift in the way we see ‘spy agencies’ and the internet, two things happened in NZ:
    – complete silence.
    Sure, there were reprinted articles about ‘the NSA is doing this’, but there was no comprehension or reflection of what this meant for NZ, what NZ’s role in this was, or what this meant for our international standing, our national or economic security for being outed as being so hand in glove with US hegemonic practice, or our foreign relations. Anyone (and I really mean ANYONE with an internet connection) can look over those documents and see NZ marked in the header as one of the members of the 5 eyes who shared those documents and intelligence. There was NO discussion of this in NZ – not from politicians nor media. And while NZ may live happily with its head in the sand, I can tell you I have a lot of foreign friends and acquaintances and it was clear that people overseas were noticing with some shock and consternation that NZ was eyeballs deep in all of this.

    So I really want to drive this point home – almost A YEAR AND HALF LATER, after no media coverage or analysis of our role in all of this, it took the same journalist breaking these stories to come down here to NZ and spell it out. SPELL OUT WHAT HAD BEEN OBVIOUS FOR A YEAR AND HALF AND NO JOURNALIST IN NZ HAD BOTHERED TALKING ABOUT.

    – We took steps that no other country made
    The other thing which happened was this: while this rolling blow by blow coverage was going on, while people in the US were protesting about whether their government was spying on them, NZ passed a new GCSB bill with hardly a flutter – and one of the reasons for doing so was to enable the GCSB to spy on NZers legally after being caught out already doing so on KDC and 88 others. Everyone should take the time to think about this.

    These two events both show the same shortcoming – both were done with blinkers on, with NZ acting oblivious to what was taking place in the wider world. That wider world arrived at our doorstep at the Moment of Truth.

    2. We really must have been watching two different events when streaming the Moment of Truth. I think part of the reaction to this is because people have ignored the setting: this wasn’t a slick TV presentation, it was set up as a town hall meeting, and that’s what it was, just streamed online – with all the pros and cons that the town hall format entails, including audio problems, the longer, more focused attention span demanded of the audience for a continuous event devoid of ad breaks and flash graphics. What’s with the petty attacks on Snowden? He was the same as he has been in any coverage I have seen of him. And while there’s been plenty of coverage of the TPPA in overseas media, once again it took a foreigner to come over here and spell it out to NZ to try and get the media here to pay attention (which failed of course).

    3. One of reasons I can’t believe this is being posted here, or that you went to the effort to write it, is firstly the completely spiteful tone of the whole article. I will never vote for you – this isn’t the kind of behaviour I expect from someone who wants to represent the country in parliament, especially when it concerns such important topics. I don’t care about whether you like KDCs laughing or not. You seem to have fallen into the same behaviour as NZ media – focusing on making fun of the messenger because he’s different (foreign, fat, whatever, there’s no shortage of people trying to ridicule KDC for these traits and more) and trying to get ‘gotcha’ attacks in rather than pay attention to the issues at stake: It was completely illegal for the GSCB to spy on him or the 88 other NZers, and no heads whatsoever have rolled for this – quite the opposite. Think about that. Why did you bother writing an article sharing your thoughts about KDCs laugh but not even mention this anywhere. This is another reason I will never vote for you – you clearly are not paying attention!

    4. The other reason I’m so surprised this is on TDB is that you seem to be completely unfamiliar with the posts that have appeared over the last week, and especially the last few days. If you plan to stay in the Labour party you need to read them, because they spell out a very plain truth: LABOUR WILL NOT BE IN GOVERNMENT IN THE NEXT ELECTION UNLESS IT CAN PRESENT A UNITED FRONT WITH OTHER PARTIES. At precisely the time that this bickering has to stop you’re indulging in even more of it. This has to stop now. You absolutely need to demonstrate unity with other parties. The way this has played out in the past, perhaps understandable with everyone being relatively new to MMP, is to say: “let’s see how the cards fall and the votes turn out on election day, and we’ll talk afterwards”. That will not work anymore. National have already showed this – they promised stable government and everyone knew they had solid coalition partners in United Future and ACT. There was no question. That is not the case for Labour at all. You need to show unity with other opposition parties, and this needs to happen before the election – well before, over the course of next few years: a solid, unrelenting unity, because the only thing that matters for Labour is to get National out of government. They are the enemy, and you need to get that through your head, not attack potential coalition parties! YOU WILL NOT GOVERN UNLESS LABOUR AND OTHER COALITION PARTIES SHOW A SOLID, ENDURING SOLIDARITY TO REPRESENT AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE NATIONAL/ACT/UNITED FUTURE/MAORI PARTY WALL OF COALITION.

    • “We really must have been watching two different events when streaming the Moment of Truth.”

      I first read it as satire, in the mode of Toby Manhire.
      Then read Kel’s comment replies.

      I was profoundly affected by the entire presentation. KDC made it happen. I feel a deep sense of gratitude to all of them.

  8. Even KDC acknowledges he was poison. That’s why he’s sorry. Packaged properly, Snowden and Greenwald’s revelations would have influenced the voting public. Clearly their revelations had little effect. How could it be that such incredible impropriety was lost on the voting public? Clearly the electorate either doesn’t care or, perhaps, don’t care for KDC, his employees or his message. Undoubtedly the voting public threw the baby out with the bathwater. KDC knows why.

    • Poison?

      Look at the criticism of DC from your precious voting, but not thinking, public.

      “he’s a criminal”

      “he’s fat”

      “he’s a fat German”

      “how dare a foreigner influence our politics’

      “he thinks he can buy an election”

      Listen Kelly, do you know the meaning of the term ad hominem, that you attempted to bash Wild Katipo with, earlier in the thread?

      Form over substance, you ought to be countering it, not pandering to it.

    • “Even KDC acknowledges he was poison.”

      Hi Kel, What Kim said in his apology was, “The brand ‘Kim Dotcom’ was poisoned, I did not see that…” (It is in the videos from election night.)

      Yet if you search for it in the Herald, eg, articles referring to it bear the title, “Kim Dotcom says he ‘poisoned’ Internet-Mana.” It is a subtle difference but enough to distort the meaning of what he was saying.

      If you find time, have a read of Keith Locke’s “Right Wing Counter Messaging in the Election” – there’s a KDC section.

    • The majority of the public couldn’t give two hoots if they are spied on they see it as necessary (the beat up in Australia where 15 were arrested and 1 now remains under arrest helps to push the idea we could soon be all under attack from terrorists) and anyway as they say ‘I haven’t done anything wrong’! This would never ever have come to light without DC, no political party has the dosh and clout to pull it together and lets face it the Greens want to separate cyber spying out of the intelligence services but Labour aren’t having a bar of that, they are so feeble.

      Robert Amsterdam is a Canadian international lawyer and founding partner with Dean Peroff of the law firm Amsterdam & Peroff, with offices in Toronto, …

    • How many of the “voting public” watched the event? And how many formed their perception of the event from MSM journalism?

      Other than Robert Amsterdam’s speaking of the TPPA and its ramifications, what other coverage did it get?

  9. OK Kelly so you’ve served up your polemic and it does have a certain flair and frisson given the acute embarrassment the whole thing makes you feel.
    I just think that a little leavening, perhaps a pinch of the constructive tossed in, might leave us all feeling as though there is a glimmer of hope of getting it right next time.
    Or should we just be chastised and in that chastity, that reflection in the void allow ourselves to fully experience our arrant stupidity and from that tabula rasa emerge wiser, more acute, more savvy, more in touch with heartland New Zealand?

    • You put it so well E-clectic. Indeed a clean slate is a lovely start. There are, however, still unlearned lessons from the one before us and we need to learn them before wipe them away.

      Negativity is impossible to avoid entirely when identifying failings. For the Left, this was a failed election campaign and the much-hyped Moment of Truth was such an epochal moment that it can’t escape scrutiny.

      I hope, in time, I’ll be forgiven for not celebrating it as the rapturous moment when NZ was freed from the bonds of ignorance.

  10. Bravo, Booker! The disrespect evidenced in this article is so shocking, the rant so unintelligible – it does disservice to everything that was this fine town hall meeting, which had indeed its moments of hilarity, but was fronted by individuals who gave time and effort to the enormous task of educating up front an obviously misled voting public. I thought the effort was stellar and that New Zealand had a chance to become, as with votes for women, an international leader in righting the wrongs of neoliberalism that have crippled the world throughout this century.

    I’m an outsider now, so I won’t continue. These matters have to be addressed, and they will be addressed. Sadly, not by the New Zealand government. But a people’s opposition, well organized, sensible to local concerns – you can do this. But don’t diss those who went out of their way to try to help you do this. Please.

    • Juliana, the content of The Moment of Truth is something that should have penetrated the market. It was certainly eye-opening from my perspective and I believed what I heard.

      But I had to try and sell this message on the streets – the message that we were spied on and lied to. As one on the receiving end of a dirty politics attack on Whale Oil, I hoped that my sense of indignation about this would be shared by voters.

      Regardless of how you or I see the content of The Moment of Truth, it was something that was impossible to sell on the street. I wish it were otherwise.

      If you’re shocked by what I’ve said, head down to the hardware store and get a can of Harden Up. There are more shocking things than my saying the message was butchered. Be shocked by the election result. If you honestly believe this was “unintelligible,” how are you even able to muster a response? It looks like rhetoric from the anonymous to me.

      • No I am not Juliana. Kelly I am not shocked by Labour’s failure at all, I think it is well deserved really. They haven’t decided which side they are really on and this has continued since he eighties. Feeding the kids has never been a priority for them, gee all those lazy irresponsible parents who spend so much money on other things that they can’t feed their kids. I feel deeply saddened at Hone losing his seat to Davis. Davis believes in ‘personal responsibility’ mmmm great for some who can make choices in their lives. I also feel saddened at the Green vote, they ran a great campaign and I have enormous respect for Russel and Metiria people of real substance.

  11. I was obviously watching a different TMOT. 1000’s were there queuing – broadcast on TV live and streaming on line. Personally I was not disappointed at all. As far as I could see the revelations were just as explosive as dirty politics and there was loads of credibility. KDC had an email and I believed it – but it was not about KDC it was about mass serveillance of data that was TMOT – KDC has just been caught up in it. Please try to actually process the information and not rely on mainstream media and right wing and labour bloggers to do it for you. If you could not understand the message was about mass surveillance in NZ from 5 eyes then something is wrong.

  12. Dotcom, Snowden, and Greenwald spoke the truth.

    We have learned more about out country than we’ve ever known before.

    Sometimes, it takes an outsider to point out the things that are wrong in our country because we are too close; too busy sorting through bills and school meetings and work deadlines and the next WoF for the car; or even looking for a job…

    Sometimes we are just to proud to admit that our country is badly flawed.

    Sometimes we know it, but it takes an outsider to really drive it home to us.

    So we wreak our vengeance on the messenger for daring to come into our homes and daring to “take over our sacred democratic process”…

    How dare this German; this Australian; this American, this Canadian, tell us what to do!

    At the same time, the critics are right; the Moment of Truth was a f**k up of… mega proportions. I felt something was wrong when I saw KDC (for whom I have much respect) on the stage giggling at something.

    My inner sense told me… this ain’t good.

    I ignored my tingling warning sensation (a very bad mistake, I’ve learned over the years)… and then it ended without the Big Reveal of Key’s Wrongdoing.

    But make no mistake, the Real Big Reveal (nice rhyming…) was confirmation that we are indeed a Surveillance Society and Key has been lying to us.

    So, the message was true.

    The messengers did their jobs.

    Albeit ith stuff-ups along the way.

    The media being what they are these days, seized on the stuff-ups. Easier to report. Less offensive to the government.

    And Dotcom’s reputation?

    We did what we duly do in this country with foreign interlopers; we metaphorically lined up Mr Dotcom and shot him. There. That’ll learn him. Don’t be telling us what to do, Boy!!

    KDC should never have been up on that stage. Laila Harré – maybe, maybe not. Leaning towards not.

    There were many other Eminent Persons who could have hosted the Moment. Ex Privacy Commissioners. Internet experts. Respected journos (there are a few left). Perhaps Sir Geoffrey Palmer.

    Though it sounds wishy-washy, I think Kelly and Kelly’s critics here both have sound p.o.v.s Take all the positions; strain them through a sieve, and you’ll find the truth coming out.

    Two things are for certain; the “Moment of Truth” not only failed, but may’ve gifted Key the election. Joyce was close to the truth on that. His ego failed him badly on September 15th.

    The other thing? Dotcom has been correct in every one of his assertions; proven right in Court; toppled a Minister of the Crown for fraud; and showed us the reality of surveillance and privacy in this country.

    Love him, loathe him, we know more about our country than we did before.

    Now it’s up to us what we do with that knowledge.

    • Dotcom has been correct in every one of his assertions; proven right in Court; toppled a Minister of the Crown for fraud

      Qualities that ignite vilification in our country (unless said Minister was in a left-leaning government).

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