Golfing partners

January 3rd, 2014 at 1:24 pm by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

United States President has rounded up a new golf partner: Prime Minister .

The two leaders teed off on a sunny and breezy morning at a course at a military base on Oahu, the Hawaiian island where Obama is renting a vacation home. Key owns a home in Hawaii.

The golf outing put Key in rarified company. Obama is an avid golfer, but prefers to limit his playing partners to a close circle of friends and advisers. Among those who have also scored invitations to play with Obama in the past are former President Bill Clinton and House Speaker John Boehner.

Rounding out the foursome on Thursday (Friday NZ time) were , the prime minister’s teenage son, and Marvin Nicholson, Obama’s personal aide.

According to one site, Obama has only played golf with another politician nine times of of 145 games (and five of those were Joe Biden). The fact he has asked John Key to join him for golf, is a sign of a significant personal friendship, rather than it being a political act. You host other leaders at the White House when they visit, you don’t play golf with them on holiday.

2014-01-02t204328z_855684561_gm1ea130d1x01_rtrmadp_3_obama

 

Credit: The Obama Diary site

A nice photo of Max Key with President Obama. He has got tall! Most of the time it sucks having your Dad as the Prime Minister, but I guess sometimes it is pretty cool :-)

It is worth reflecting that Key is exceptionally good at establishing personal relationships with other leaders.He has done it with Harper and Cameron who are also from the centre-right but also with Gillard and Obama, who are not. I also understand he has an excellent rapport with the Queen, as evidenced by the rare invite to Balmoral.

My theory is that Key isn’t fazed by anyone, and so when he meets people like the US President, or the Queen, he treats them much the same way as he treats everyone else – with some humour and as a person, not a position.

Some people got really excited that a junior sub-editor at the New York Daily News didn’t know who John Key was, when captioning a photo from the Mandela funeral. Well I guess if you have to choose between being known by a junior sub-editor, or the US President, I know which one I’d want :-)

Anyway, we’re all waiting for the real news – what were the scores, and who won? :-)

UPDATE: I understand that Obama and Key Sr played on the same team, and beat Key Jr and Nicholson.

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90 Responses to “Golfing partners”

  1. secondcumming (93 comments) says:

    ” ……and for someone who thinks they’re so bloody smart, that stupid fat german seems to have forgotten they LOST the bloody war ….hey, nice putt mister president!”

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  2. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    Might not look like such a good idea if they impeach his ass.

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  3. BeaB (2,125 comments) says:

    Now wait for the Left and the media and The Listener to scoff and sneer -while secretly writhing in envy.

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  4. tvb (4,430 comments) says:

    The is pretty damn good. Key has not put a foot wrong on the international stage. He makes an excellent impression of NZ., Our best ever PM.

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  5. Fletch (6,407 comments) says:

    Good event for closer ties.
    Golfing is what Obama does best; even in crises

    Just last Saturday, August 31, 2013, minutes after a rare press conference in the Rose Garden to publicly stress the urgency regarding the Syria chemical attack, Obama and Biden immediately left — to play GOLF! Mike Flynn’s article, Obama Hits Golf Course After Announcing National Emergency, describes the odd response of the president.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/what-chemical-weapons-attack-obama-plays-games-of-golf

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  6. tas (625 comments) says:

    One of Fairfax’s predictions is coming true pretty quickly:

    13. Mr Key will visit the White House and host a high-profile return visit.

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  7. Nostradamus (3,339 comments) says:

    Good on John Key.

    Now can anyone imagine Obama playing golf with Helen Clark? No? How about David Cunliffe? No? :)

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  8. iMP (2,386 comments) says:

    Which ever way you cut this – and I am no fan of Obama – this is great for both countries, even after both men move on politically. This kind of detente and connection is priceless in terms of renewing a stronger historic and cultural relationship with America, which is completely NZ’s future notwithstanding Bolger’s Asian rim reality.

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  9. dime (9,977 comments) says:

    “Now can anyone imagine Obama playing golf with Helen Clark? No? How about David Cunliffe? No?”

    can anyone imagine someone/anyone calling cunliffe and saying “lets hang”

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  10. dime (9,977 comments) says:

    I think Obama has been a rat shit president. A small step above piss weak carter. However, he seems like a good dude. id have a beer with obama.

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  11. Fisiani (1,039 comments) says:

    John Key oozes social intelligence. He is easy-going on the outside and 100 miles per hour on the inside. He could easily be a top CEO in any firm and be earning far more than he does as PM. We are truly blessed to have a genial leader with razor sharp instincts who knows that he can do more for New Zealand than it can ever do for him. He, along with Bill English is leading the country towards an economic miracle from the devastation and scorched earth left by the Socialists. His smile is genuine and warm and not the rictus ” I do like Rugby” of Hulun Clark. He does not need to be a politician. He chooses to be. He does not think he can walk on water. Which world leader would not like to play golf with him or share a meal? He deserves a knighthood when he chooses to hand over the reins in the third ,fourth or even fifth term of the best governement that New Zealand has ever seen. This is truly a golden age for NZ unless complacency and boredom allow a Green/Labour/Mana monstrosity to form a coalition of losers one day.

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  12. MH (762 comments) says:

    yes a wonderful opportunity for Obama to upskill his diplomatic abilities,-

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  13. NeutralObserver (95 comments) says:

    I think it is cool that they are playing on a Golf Course within a US military base. Somehow can’t see the boffins at No1 The Terrace approving of that, maybe there is a capital charge…..

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  14. Longknives (4,763 comments) says:

    Obama plays a hell of a lot of golf!

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  15. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    I think Obama has been a rat shit president. A small step above piss weak carter. However, he seems like a good dude.

    Really?

    I’d have said that someone who lies as easily and often as Obama isn’t someone I’d consider a “good dude” – at all.

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  16. Manolo (13,828 comments) says:

    The red imbeciles at The sub-Standard are having a meltdown and throwing a tantrum. Read and laugh:

    Meanwhile the world burns, the poor struggle, workers are exploited and increasingly insecure, and the wealth gap continues to be a blight on our country. It seems to brighter future is in Hawaii, for the bankster-supporting elites.

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  17. BeaB (2,125 comments) says:

    Manolo
    They are so predictable – and dumb.
    No wonder Key rose to the top as a global CEO.
    Just look how he neutralised Helen Clark (she couldn’t resist the biggest trough of them all) and Michael Cullen (nasty waspish Socialist couldn’t resist the knighthood and the well-paid sinecure).
    Key makes Cunliffe look like a smarmy hypocrite and pseudo.

    The Left must lie awake at night wondering why he is so rich, happy and successful and why it isn’t them in the golf buggy with the black guy they all adored.

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  18. Manolo (13,828 comments) says:

    The rainbow-delicate and vile Lynn Prentice must be loving the kind comments from the socialist mob. Even the once arm-robber and proud bludger Ure is in it!

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  19. Dean Papa (784 comments) says:

    Amusing to see all the Obama hating rightards now pooping their pants with excitement at our Johnny knocking out a few holes of golf with the Kenyan socialist!

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  20. doggone7 (808 comments) says:

    The story proves I’ve died and gone to heaven. To reaction meltdown of delirium simply proves it.

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  21. secondcumming (93 comments) says:

    In response to ‘dime’ @1.53pm…

    ’bout the only one i can think might have called him had he still been round, was Albert Pierrepoint.

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  22. prinCamLot (12 comments) says:

    One of the greatest surprises in history – it’s not a surprise, actually! – is that predicting the outcome of any set of circumstances is difficult. For instance, had Eisenhower challenged the Soviets invasion of Hungary the Cold War may have been ‘done and dusted’ well before the fall of the Berlin Wall. So where does the close friendship of a nobody prime minster with the head of the world’s last and declining superpower take us. The question maybe poorly constructed though the sentiment is expressed.

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  23. prinCamLot (12 comments) says:

    To put it another way – if you’re in trouble and need to talk to a mate, you would wouldn’t you.

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  24. stephieboy (3,154 comments) says:

    Manolo (11,854 comments) says:
    January 3rd, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    Manolo ,why do you and your rabid right colleagues hate black people so much ?
    Is it because you consider yourself superior to Obama and them.?
    If so in what way do you regard yourself thus.?

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  25. MH (762 comments) says:

    it could have been….a round of Goff.

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  26. wikiriwhis business (4,018 comments) says:

    World leaders all belong to the One World Govt club.

    Key is a financial insider from Wall St who own the US govt.

    In all reality Key is probably higher up the echelon than Obama

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  27. wikiriwhis business (4,018 comments) says:

    Keysnian socialist with the Kenyan socialist.

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  28. igm (1,413 comments) says:

    Take a look at the left-wing comments of envy on Fairfax sites. It is representative of the way this once respected stable of publications has fallen, thanks to the losers employed as journos. Surely Gina will start liquidating a few of these disgraceful Labour/Green propaganda sheets as their advertisers are bailing at alarming rates.

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  29. peterwn (3,274 comments) says:

    I have wondered a bit at the implications of John Key holidaying in Hawaii. For example, does his DPS escort carry a gun, does the Secret Service pay some attention to his personal safety etc. Is it good etiquette for a foreign head of state or prime minister to inform the host country of an intended private visit? If so whether this is passed up the ‘food chain’ possibly as far as the host PM or President. I saw somewhere the Pope is not supposed to leave the Vatican (ie step outside St Peter’s Square) unless the Italian authorities are notified which would be a formality.

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  30. Duxton (654 comments) says:

    “Key makes Cunliffe look like a smarmy hypocrite and pseudo.”

    Actually, Cunliffe makes Cunliffe look like a smarmy hypocrite and pseudo. (Although I think you mean ‘psycho’.)

    Seriously, this is a good news story. Only the most diehard leftist fucktard would try to argue that the NZ PM having a round of golf with the US President isn’t a good thing.

    The fact that a handful are speaks volumes.

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  31. MH (762 comments) says:

    re the Pope – it’s because of something one of his predecessors did – misuse of his payPal account. He’s been tying to get on the Diplomatic Head of State pro-golf tour for years,he even says he comes with his own golf cart.

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  32. Keeping Stock (10,342 comments) says:

    I blogged about this earlier this morning, because I wasn’t cycling along riverside trails in the Waikato :D

    And on my FB link to the post, the following comments were left:

    * According to David Cunliffe’s CV, he has played golf with every US president since Abraham Lincoln.
    * Cunliffe invented Golf
    * And Cunliffe decided how many dimples to put on a golf ball on his off-time while he was setting up the Ford car company.

    Cunliffe will be mightily pissed off about this. How can he gain any traction when the economy is about to boom, unemployment is falling, consumer and business confidence are soaring and the PM is off for a round of golf with the Leader of the Free World. Oh dear; how sad; never mind.

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  33. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  34. mara (788 comments) says:

    The prospect of NZ being run by Silent T and the little green man does not bear thinking about, so, even though Key is too “progressive” for my taste, the alternative is just too ghastly. Cunliffe’s desperation for power should red-flag him automatically.

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  35. RightNow (6,994 comments) says:

    I wonder if Max got a pic of O planking.

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  36. kowtow (8,512 comments) says:

    Keeping Stock

    Please feel free to wax lyrical about our PM,but please Obama ,the Leader of the Free World?

    Obummer is a barely disguised closet Marxist who does not deserve the Cold War titles that correctly once did go hand in hand with the office of POTUS.

    re the Pope ….probably got something to do with the concordat signed before WW2 that formalised Vatican/Iteye relations.

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  37. Kimble (4,440 comments) says:

    Please feel free to wax lyrical about our PM,but please Obama ,the Leader of the Free World?

    If you have a problem with the US President being referred to as the Leader of the Free World then you are more than welcome to travel back in time and change the events of the 20th century. I would concentrate on the Cold War, if I was you.

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  38. Keeping Stock (10,342 comments) says:

    @ kowtow – I’m no fan of Obama, but “Leader of the Free World” has been a term of endearment applied to most US presidents in my lifetime :D

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  39. kiwi in america (2,454 comments) says:

    Max Key high fiving POTUS – I guess finally a perk for being John Key’s son! The electoral power of this seemingly casual round of golf is considerable. Its why the left are foaming at the mouth – coming on the back of a string of positive economic indicators and a growing global reputation for a strong economy, this reinforces the powerful meme that John Key is definitely worth voting in for a 3rd term.

    The irony of the left’s envy is delicious because Obama was their wet dream come true – at least when he wins elections if not when examining his governing record. It underscores Key’s relative absence of ideology and ‘get the job done’ pragmatism that he would develop such a personal closeness to the most powerful man in the world who comes from the other side of the political isle that he would be invited to attend such a private inner inner circle event.

    Setting aside the politics of a National PM being so close to the leader of the world’s remaining superpower, this must bode well for New Zealand as we continue to punch above our weight on the world stage. Such closeness sends a signal to other countries and opens doors in Washington – a city that is a rabbit warren of tricky political maneuvering. Watching the left seeth with resentment and envy is just priceless!

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  40. duggledog (1,559 comments) says:

    How can this be bad. This is the guy who only recently was invited to stay with HRH with the Mrs and the kids. Poor Cunliffe. Obama would be able to see right through young David, as one of the many grasping little turds that would drift through his field of vision. Not so John Key. That’s because:

    John Key is what they call PLU (people like us). That’s part of his success as one of NZ’s best Prime Ministers. He’s easy to be around and what you see is what you get, although he’d be a different guy in the Cabinet Room – and so I would expect him to be as CEO.

    Having worked with John Key for a short time in the past, none of this is any real surprise to me. But I think the honour is all Obama’s!

    Labour will be having conniptions about this – hey, HE’S OUR GUY!!

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  41. Keeping Stock (10,342 comments) says:

    If your comment was a drive KiA, it would be 300 meters, right down the middle. The Left’s commentariat is getting its knickers in a knot, and Cunliffe and co will be fuming. The photos from today, and the video of John and Max Key high-giving the POTUS will be very handy for Key and National in the run-up to the election. It reinforces that with Key what you see is what you get. Compare that to Cunliffe with his embellished CV, the faux ghetto accent in the infamous Avondale Markets speech, and his I Am Havard poetry; the comparison is pretty stark.

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  42. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Good God chaps! What’s the world coming too! Hard to believe our chap would play golf with a darkie….What?

    Eat shit and die socialists!! :)

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  43. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Duggle,
    hes smiling like every politician does as they have being told too by the party as it gets you more votes.
    Who cares if the Queen gets on with him, what the hell do they do for us, their offspring are complete nitwits and the middletons a social climbing dorks.
    End of the day Keys just a bore who does a good job

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  44. Keeping Stock (10,342 comments) says:

    Have you had a tough day martinh? You seem a bit down on the world…

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  45. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    martinh is of course a nonentity who makes grand pronouncements on chaps whose arse he wouldn’t be allowed to lick! :)

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  46. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Stock, no, just not blindly free and devoted you

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  47. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    JohnBoy, you really are a nancyboy, i bet you wank over that licking

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  48. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Two damn excellent riposte’s martinh!! :)

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  49. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Ok Johnboy keep it in your pants

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  50. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    From what you have said are you implying that you have being allowed to lick one of those arses Johnboy?

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  51. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Good grief, four in a row now! You are a superior mind to be reckoned with martinh! :)

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  52. cha (4,036 comments) says:

    But martin, that’s what a bloke does when he”s getting his clacker licked.

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  53. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    dunno what a clacker is, i dont hang out with nancy boys so dont know the lingo

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  54. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Dont think your compliments will get you anywhere with me Johnboy

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  55. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    You do seem rather fixated with “nancyboys” martinh…..were you a boy scout once? :)

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  56. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    no

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  57. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Choirboy? :)

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  58. nasska (11,575 comments) says:

    A member of the Labour Party? :)

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  59. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Nah nasska. I’ve got him now. Father Martin Halloran from the Craggy Island diocese! :)

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  60. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    john no.
    nasska. no, national party

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  61. nasska (11,575 comments) says:

    Darren Hughes gymnastics partner? :)

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  62. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Wasn’t that Annette in drag nasska? :)

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  63. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    incorrect

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  64. nasska (11,575 comments) says:

    Could’ve been JB…..the medicine ball got in the way of a clear look. :)

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  65. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    At least you’ve got a smile on your face now martinh! :)

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  66. nasska (11,575 comments) says:

    Time to ‘fess up Martin……when did the fantasies begin & who starred in them? :)

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  67. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Been a bit of a quiet day nasska? :)

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  68. nasska (11,575 comments) says:

    Just another hard day in the paddock JB. :)

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  69. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Jack Tame sitting on Rebecca wrights stuck up nose while they fall off a cliff

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  70. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    Johnboy @ 7.02

    Now the last line of your post is intsructive.
    you ‘n’ young ‘nickb’ seem to have coined the phrase and adopted it for yourselves.

    “Eat shit and die…”

    Where TF did that come from ? Just stupid kid talk?
    i never heard of it before youse came out with it.

    In your mimd What TF does it mean ?

    Thing is Johnboy, when you use a silly, girly term like, ” Eat shit and etc. etc.”

    It’s just silly.

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  71. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Bereal,
    The clue is all in his name, i suppose hes talking about some form of tapeworm or something

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  72. Johnboy (16,651 comments) says:

    Duke Nukem aint a silly little girly Beryl! :)

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  73. martinh (1,257 comments) says:

    Do you prefer him over tom of finland Johnboy?

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  74. SPC (5,636 comments) says:

    The adulation of the man called John Key is what would be expected from the subjects of the dear leader of North Korea.

    It must be an election year and those voting for the man’s party are promoting him to the rest of the us as a friend of someone whom the political right of the USA despise. Presumably to pose him as centrist to centrist voters.

    It’s called photo ops, creating a public image of a man as socially connected and thus able to use his contacts to do wonderous things beyond the capacity of lesser men … .

    By the way taking 5 years to recover from a recession caused by our own domestic high level OCR (to squash a housing bubble) and even then being dependent on a earthquake rebuild and historic high terms of trade to do so is not an economic miracle.

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  75. OneTrack (3,111 comments) says:

    spc – “The adulation of the man called John Key is what would be expected from the subjects of the dear leader of North Korea.”

    Which, of course, is nothing like we saw from the hard left after the Cunliffe was elected leader of the labour party?

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  76. MH (762 comments) says:

    Apparently some of the presidential golfball had a picture of Peter Dunne on them. Most of those he hit out of bounds.

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  77. SPC (5,636 comments) says:

    The left in this country is not hard.

    Ken Douglas corporate puppy since the Rogernome era, once upon a time Bill Anderson (our Suslov the hardline ideologist who backed Gorbachov’s rise to power) of the Socialist Unity Party’s go to hard man understudy – he of Soviet health care, hard? Still flabby even since he lost the weight and attempt at leftist gravitas.

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  78. itstricky (1,849 comments) says:

    John Key oozes social intelligence

    Really? I thought the guy was just that unfunny uncle who tried to crack jokes that weren’t quite hip. Just a few parables away from being on the money. That’s ’cause people write them for him but he’s not 100% on knowing exactly what they are on about so it sounds completely rehearsed. You only have to glance at that picture of him from the 80s trading floor to know that is true. Kinda like that recent ‘don’t be the cool dad’ alcohol ad.

    Good on him though if he can hob nob it with the leader of the free world and gain us brownie points. I love the mixed reaction here – ohhhh but Obama is a socialist terrorist devil in disguise et al.

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  79. Lance (2,656 comments) says:

    Ha ha ha
    The lefty sock puppets can barely muster enough words to release their deep seated hatred.

    Sad really.

    You moan about the 1%… this time it’s you.

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  80. itstricky (1,849 comments) says:

    And before you go getting all down vote on me I would say that is my perception. I guess I can tell it’s rehearsed and not geniune. If you can’t – good luck to ya.

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  81. itstricky (1,849 comments) says:

    The lefty sock puppets can barely muster enough words to release their deep seated hatred

    You mean like the comments above from the righty sock puppets who introduced Cunliffe and Clark into the conversation for some reason. Surely they don’t have deep seated hatred of such people do they? Or even more astounding the ones who can’t be happy that their PM is doing good because it’s with the devil? They don’t have any deep seated hatred either do they?

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  82. OneTrack (3,111 comments) says:

    spc – “The left in this country is not hard.”

    I am not talking old labour (up to and including Helen). I am talking about the Cunliffe (since his election to the leadership and those he now owes favours to), the Green Party and Mana. Their rhetoric and manifestos scream hard-left.

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  83. SPC (5,636 comments) says:

    Cunliffe is to the right of New Zealand in 1984, todays left is not extreme, let alone hard. And nor is his support within the Labour Party.

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  84. V (720 comments) says:

    It’s great how many comments on here are both true.

    For example it is a positive thing that Key has struck up such good relations with Obama, however it is amusing that those that otherwise criticise Obama also go on about it. I’m also not sure it is something that would change the voting intentions of the NZ electorate either way. Particularly as Obama has been such a failure, ‘healthcare reform’ anyone?
    I would say in the extremely unlikely event we had a Labour leader doing this, much of the right would probably say they are cuddling a corpse.

    I for one hope Key has put the hard word on Obama over the TPP, the rest of the countries should be prepared to go it alone without the US.

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  85. you reap what you sow (35 comments) says:

    Key should have invited Tony Abbot to be Max’s caddy

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  86. flipper (4,077 comments) says:

    peterwn (2,660 comments) says:

    January 3rd, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    I have wondered a bit at the implications of John Key holidaying in Hawaii. For example, does his DPS escort carry a gun, does the Secret Service pay some attention to his personal safety etc. Is it good etiquette for a foreign head of state or prime minister to inform the host country of an intended private visit? If so whether this is passed up the ‘food chain’ possibly as far as the host PM or President
    ****

    1. Key owns his home in Kauai (?) Hawaii, and did so BEFORE he became PM.
    2. Yes, the DPS does carry firearms in US- part of the reciprocal arrangement with NZ whereby USSS carries in NZ when here.
    3. Formally advises? Yes, as a courtesy, so that USSS can also provide protection for Key and family as it is required by US statute to do.
    4. Obama aware? Probably this would have been informally discussed at some international conf. attended by both Key and Obama.
    5. Worth noting that Key travelled to Oahu. (Fort Russell GC????)

    6. A bloody great boost for a nation of 4.5m I have had emails commenting favourably on this event from Toronto, London, Florida, New York, Oregon and Colorado.
    7. Good stuff! It beats the hell out of attending Socialist International meetings.
    8. TPP? Possibly in passing, but (Obama will be dependant on Senate support.

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  87. OlderChas (24 comments) says:

    duggledog @ at 6:49 pm
    John Key actually went to Balmoral to stay with HM, though there were also a few HRH’s there!

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  88. Dazzaman (1,140 comments) says:

    The amount of Key cocksucking by the majority of commenters is nauseating. He must be the man with two cocks…..one for Obama & the other for his KB knee droppers.

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  89. RandySavage (222 comments) says:

    I hope you swallow after that Farrar, what a shameless sock puppet you are

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  90. ManuT (54 comments) says:

    It’s fantastic to see we have a PM worthy of the job and who is respected on the world stage. I believe National have at least four or five other ministers who would get close enough to this standard and I am grateful to them for their good leadership.

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