Advertising, Foreshore and seabed, John Key

Iwi/Kiwi — the Sequel and the Prequel


Come back Helen Clark, all is forgiven.

You may have thought Ethics was a county in England. You may have trampled on our free speech in election year. But at least you locked in our right to a free beach.

Just yesterday we learned that John Key can no longer guarantee that right.

He can’t be sure a group of part-Maori, part-Pakeha New Zealanders won’t one day tax you for the right to swim, sail or fish in your own bay.

By Christmas he may well have traded away tens of thousands of square kilometres of New Zealand coastline for a resource he prizes more highly than all the oil in our territorial sea.

Five Maori Party votes.

There’s a word for that, and it’s not trader.

There was a time not so long ago when the National Party could say it was to the right of Helen Clark on matters Maori.

It had a leader with principles for whom I was proud to create advertising.

As the billboard below made clear (but was cynically misinterpreted by the left), there was never any doubt who Don Brash stood for.

As any dictionary will tell you, Kiwi means all New Zealanders, which clearly includes those represented by the last three letters — iwi.

But when John Key gives iwi the right to negotiate directly with the Crown — meaning former Ngai Tahu lawyer and strongly pro-Maori minister Chris Finlayson — who will speak for Kiwis?



Critics on the left thought it dishonest to characterise Helen Clark as ‘Iwi’. After all, did her Foreshore and Seabed Act not claim the coast for the Crown?

It’s a fair point.

But it was not the way the National Party saw things at the time.

They viewed Labour’s bill as deliberately embedded with fish-hooks that iwi could use to eventually hook the resources they craved.

Below is the long copy forerunner of the Iwi/Kiwi billboard, which I wrote a year earlier to spell out National’s concerns.

It talks of their fear of vague concepts like tikanga Maori and customary rights.

In 2004 the Nats believed those concerns to be real, but it would now appear those fish-hooks were blunt. In the six years since, few if any tribes have succeeded with their coastal claims.

So while Clark may have been Iwi next to Brash’s Kiwi, alongside Kaumatua Key she’s ‘Kiwi as’.

Key’s foreshore and seabed plans are frightening, as he’s repeatedly shown he’s willing to sacrifice the national interest for the interests of the National Party.

For a fascinating insight into principles as a tradable commodity, click on the magnified image at the very bottom and read my 2004 body copy.

You may need to pinch yourself as you do.

Yes, this is the National Party trying to scare you about Labour’s coastal management — when most of the same fish-hooks are now part of their own policy, but sharper.

Enjoy the exquisite hypocrisy.


Click on the below image to magnify the body copy, then again if you need to.

 This post is also appearing on Muriel Newman’s site

Note: I’ve submitted the billboard at the top to the Coastal Coalition. Hope they decide to run it.


9 thoughts on “Iwi/Kiwi — the Sequel and the Prequel

  1. Self-hating white has criticised you:

    Thanks for that Jono. I responded to being called a moron as follows:

    “‘Moron’ here.

    Look, I couldn’t care less about racial purity.

    But when my money’s being handed over to people because they’re descended from the full-blooded Maori signatories of the Treaty, I want to know how Maori they really are.

    And the answer, racially, is “Not very”.

    That’s why I say Maori is a not a race, but a religion. I don’t mean that as an insult, just a fact.

    Tariana Turia is at least half American – but strangely chooses not to mention it when reciting her whakapapa (see further down the Kiwiblog thread).


    Pita Sharples is at least half English (and is honest enough to acknowledge it).

    Hone Harawira is really John Hadfield and Tipene O’Regan is Steve.

    Why all the deception?

    These people are 100% genuine in their identification with Maori culture, no question.

    But my point is they CHOOSE to identify with one side of themselves and ignore the other.


    Why are they not just as proud of their English, Scottish, Irish or American ancestry?

    Again, none of this would matter, except for the small matter of the billions (and possibly trillions) of dollars non-iwi New Zealanders are expected to keep handing over from their pay packets to a small tribal elite for crimes done to them by their own Pakeha ancestors.

    The vast majority of Maori see none of this money, which just makes the fraud worse.

    Please respond to that point rather than just slinging your stock racist abuse.

    I knew full well what I was walking into when I posted that comment, but you won’t get away with calling me racist. My point is fair, so please address it.”

    I expect he’ll try every trick in the book to avoid doing so.

  2. John – you backed the wrong man didn’t you. I remember well how sure you were that John Key was the One.
    Never mind. Once Roger Douglas hits his straps, you’ll be sweet. He’s the really the One, eh!

    Robert, I always believed John Key could win an election, and always worried what would happen to the country after that. Everything I predicted has come to pass.

    As for Roger, he’ll go down in history as our Thatcher or Reagan – the politician whose courage will be remembered long after the Clarks and Keys have been forgotten.

  3. John – my apologies, I thought you were active in ensuring that Key got in but if you had reservations about ‘what would happen if he did’ then you can’t have been – that would have been irresponsible.

    Thank you Robert.

    I resigned from my (well-paid) job with the Leader’s Office the day Don Brash resigned in 2006.

    I came back to work for Key about six months later, hoping he would be better than my instincts suggested, then left to work (for less money) for Roger Douglas and ACT shortly afterwards.

    I most definitely was not responsible for the 2008 National ad campaign (or, as it turned out, much of ACT’s), but certainly did prefer John Key as prime minister over the only other option, Helen Clark.

    On the issue of the foreshore and seabed, however, I much prefer Clark’s management to Key’s, though support the ACT position of allowing iwi to test their claims in Court.

  4. Got a brochure from the Council today, titled ‘First Rate’ that informed me that I’d be paying 15% GST on my rates as of Oct 1.
    First rate effort Key.

  5. “Critics on the left thought it dishonest to characterise Helen Clark as ‘Iwi’. After all, did her Foreshore and Seabed Act not claim the coast for the Crown?

    It’s a fair point.”

    So I’m a hypocrite who doesn’t give a damn about the truth, but what the hay I’m in advertising? I know what I’m doing is a lie and I do it anyway?

    That a fair cop John?

    Well let’s see readers, what do you think?

    In the very next line after the piece Murray picks out, I said this…

    “But that was not the way National saw things at the time.”

    And I went on to say why, and to show you the ad that Iwi/Kiwi was based on.

    But Murray doesn’t mention that. He thinks you’re so dumb you’ll uncritically accept his slur that I must be a hypocrite and liar.

    So… who do you think is the liar?

    I should add that the issue discussed in that fishhook ad was highly complex. If you read the ad, you’ll see there was good evidence to justify the Iwi/Kiwi angle.

    If the Nat strategy committee turned out to be wrong in their prediction of how Labour’s law would pan out, I don’t think you can leap to the conclusion that they must have been lying.

    They were, after all, talking about Helen Clark’s Labour government, New Zealand’s most corrupt since the Hall ministry of the 1880s.

    There was certainly no talk about misleading or exaggerating in any of the meetings I attended. Quite the reverse in fact – those guys were annoyingly pedantic, knowing what would happen if they got the facts wrong.

    As far as I’m aware, that ad didn’t attract any complaints at the time.

  6. I was asking you John, based on your own conflicting statements.

    I apologise if you thought I was calling you names. I was suprised to see you concede the arguments on the left had a “fair point” that the advertisement was “dishonest” (your words) and I wanted to see if you were prepared to follow that admission to it’s logical conclusions.

    The National Party advertising at least has the decency to spell out it’s rationale, not make a simple and misleading generalisation.

    Sorry I didn’t mean to resort to name calling, the paragraph above spells things out a little more civilly.

    OK Murray.

    Again for those not used to joined-up reading: The Nats weren’t being deliberately misleading, but they turned out to be wrong.

    That wrongness could only be proven after some years had elapsed, when it was clear their predictions had not eventuated.

    It could not be assumed at the time the Iwi/Kiwi billboard came out.

    Labour claimed the billboard was wrong.

    But Labour had shown with their various scandals that they did not place a high value on truth and honesty.

    As it turned out, they were right on this one and National was wrong.

    Therefore one could understand if Labour supporters called National’s billboard dishonest. But there was no intention to mislead.

    I don’t expect to be believed by those blinkered souls who are determined to paint me as some sort of habitual liar.

    But that’s the best I can do here.

    I’ll have to console myself with the knowledge that those closest to me know I place the highest value on truth and fairness.

    My whole political quest is about trying to get to the truth of matters.

    When the truth changes (as it did for me on climate change), I change my views.

    If I should find that my client is misleading me on this foreshore issue, I will change my view and say so.

    But there’s no hint of that.

    I’ve asked them a lot of searching questions to make sure they’ve got their facts straight, and the thoroughness of their answers has impressed me.

    My job is now to get those facts into the minds of millions of ordinary Kiwis.

    On this issue, my view of what’s fair is different from others’ views.

    But I think all sincere views backed with rational evidence should be respected.

  7. It’s good to see your right wing hyperbole of Clark is back in your reply however!

    It would be unsettling if a great demon of the right turned out in fact to be able to see 9 years of stable, good governance in a light other than that of Investigate magazine.

    I do indeed have a high regard for the courage, resilience, honesty and clarity of Ian Wishart (even if I don’t understand how such a rational man can be so religious).

    I’ve yet to hear a well-supported criticism of his work, beyond the standard unsubstantiated leftist put-downs.

    As to Helen’s ‘stable, good governance’, I don’t think history will describe her squandering of the nation’s wealth as good governance.

    Nor do I imagine historians will be impressed with Paintergate, Doonegate, Pledgegate, Speedgate, TaitoPhillipFieldgate etc. – all evidence of her low moral standards.

    On a personal level, I admit to a certain hypocrisy in being grateful to Helen for banning smoking in pubs and restaurants.

    As for stable, well I suppose bequeathing the nation ten years of deficits could be described as stable.

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