Beveridge on Shylock comment

August 12th, 2014 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

blogs:

also claims that he was not aware of the meaning of the term. However, , whose post the comment was made on, is a lawyer. He is claiming on Radio New Zealand that he was just repeating comments that he has heard elsewhere. However should also be being questioned about his knowledge of the term. Does he claim that he was not aware of the meaning of the term?

Greg Presland is a close advisor and friend of David Cunliffe and was one of the lawyers involved in the setting up of the secret trusts used to fund David Cunliffe’s leadership challenge. He has held office in the Labour Party, including being electorate chair for David Cunliffe’s New Lynn electorate, he is a member of the Waitakere Ranges Local Board, and is descirbed by The Daily Blog as a “labour activist“. It is not like this post was made on the profile of Steve Gibson’s friend Joe Bloggs. Considering the profile and position of Greg Presland his actions, or lack thereof, in relation to this post should also be raising questions.

I don’t think you hold authors responsible for comments made on their site, unless they have previously seen the comment. for example I do not see 90% of the comments on Kiwiblog. I only read General Debate when someone complains about something. But from what I can see there were only two comments on Presland’s post, so I would be surprised if he had not seen the Shylock comment.

He notes that said on Facebook:

I’ve been shocked and disappointed at the anti-Semitic comment and defacing of billboards over the past few days, including in my electorate of Mt Albert. I don’t want John Key to win the election because I believe NZ can do much better with a different, fairer government, not because of whether he’s Jewish or not. 

NZ is a tolerant society. We pride ourselves on it. Most of what I’ve seen shows the utter ignorance of the writers. I’ve taken the worst off my page here when it crops up. I don’t want to see it. 

Perhaps Mr Presland could emulate what David Shearer does. Beveridge points out:

There appears to have been no comment, from anyone, about the nature of Steve Gibson’s post on Greg’s wall, until it became public, two weeks after it was posted. If Greg had replied to Steve, pointing out the offensive and anit-Semitic nature of this post, or if he had deleted it before it became public, then it would have been a clear sign those involved in the high levels of the Labour Party take seriously the issue of anti-Semitism and their pledge Vote Positive. However neither Greg Presland nor any of his friends, appear to have made any comments, or taken any action to counter these comments.  Does this lack of action, or comment, from a senior figure in the Labour Party, and his friends, suggest an acceptance of the comments and their nature?

The fact is the comment was only removed after we highlighted it.

UPDATE: Patrick Gower writes:

If Labour’s campaign really was about “vote positive”, then leader David Cunliffe would have axed candidate Steven Gibson for the John Key “Shylock” call.

Mr Cunliffe has instead put him on a “final warning”, missing a golden opportunity to look decisive and find some moral high ground in what is already a dirty election campaign. But he should have just got rid of Mr Gibson.

Mr Gibson is responsible for calling Mr Key “Shylock” – a reference to the Jewish money lender in Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice.

The Shylock comment is off-colour and has anti-Semitic overtones. It is also rude, nasty and incredibly politically naive. It is the worst kind of negative politics.

He went even further on the Facebook post, calling Mr Key a “nasty little creep … with a nasty, evil, vindictive sneer”.

This is not the standard of discourse worthy of someone who wants to be an MP and it is certainly not “vote positive”.

Gower concludes:

I cannot come up with a single valid reason why Mr Cunliffe should have kept Mr Gibson as a candidate. He probably didn’t axe him because he and his strategist didn’t think of it and “kicked for touch”.

But Mr Cunliffe needs to take risks. He should have got rid of Mr Gibson.

Yes, he should have.

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62 Responses to “Beveridge on Shylock comment”

  1. Pete George (23,420 comments) says:

    Presland seems to have fortuitously escaped on holiday to a Pacific Island just before this went public so has been out of the firing line on it.

    He and other moderators at The Standard frequently ignore abusive comments – but clamp down hard on searching or embarrassing questions.

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  2. Huevon (213 comments) says:

    I don’t think such a big deal should be made out of this. Citizens of a free democracy are free to be anti-Semites if they wish.

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  3. King Kong (39 comments) says:

    Presland is an omnishambles and I know many people in Labour are furious at how much influence this complete numpty has over David Cunliffe.

    He lacks any kind of political nouse and it speaks to their incompetence that Cunliffe’s coms and strategy guys haven’t shut him down yet.

    They will have to eventually and then it will just be “two pumps” Prentice and “carpet specialist” Karol, circle jerking at the Standard.

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  4. PaulL (6,013 comments) says:

    @Huevon: yes, they are free to be anti-semites if they wish. And when they are, we should all point out how stupid that makes them, and that really it means they’re not fit to hold public office. And if others in their party tolerate it, then they’re also not fit to hold public office.

    My concern here is that comments like this rumble around the corners of leftie blogdom (including The Standard). Nobody on the left calls them out as being offensive, and I think that a surprising percentage of them actually believe them. It seems like a bunch of Labour supporters, and even caucus members, believe that John Key is involved in a secret Jewish plot with the bankers and the share traders to accumulate all the wealth and keep the common man down.

    There appears to be no consideration at all of the possibility that people like John Key make a lot of money because they are really good at what they do. Hence their surprise when it turns out that John Key is actually a really successful politician – they keep believing their caricature of him is real and then being surprised when he’s actually a middle of the road guy who most people think is a good bloke. As long as Labour and the left in general keep seeing John Key as Roger Douglas and Ayn Rand’s love child, they’ll keep mis-positioning themselves in attempting to win an election. Which is of course all good with me.

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  5. Tarquin North (249 comments) says:

    Hey Clint, why is there yet another knife in dear leaders back? If he collects many more he’ll become top heavy and fall over completely.

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  6. georgebolwing (750 comments) says:

    It is a sad reflection of the standard of education in New Zealand that the media apparently feels that they have to explain why calling someone “Shylock” is likely to be offensive.

    I guess suggesting that John Key’s attitude shows that the quality of mercy is indeed not strained would equally be casting pearls before swine.

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  7. Yoza (1,763 comments) says:

    Shylock is quite an aging pejorative, unlike ‘calling a spade,” a spade”‘ which is probably far more widespread. A ‘spade’ being a derogatory British term for West Indian immigrants.

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  8. Tinshed (138 comments) says:

    As I said on another thread, the silence of some of our political leaders is deafening. Full marks to David Shearer for a clear and unequivocal denunciation of anti-semitism.

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  9. dime (9,788 comments) says:

    “I don’t think such a big deal should be made out of this. Citizens of a free democracy are free to be anti-Semites if they wish.”

    yep. as long as they front up to it an dont hide behind the “i didnt know what it meant” defence.

    personally, i hate islam. i make no apologies. if i was standing for office though, it may have an impact on my chances of winning..

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  10. backster (2,136 comments) says:

    IT’S the personal abuse before and after the word ‘shylock’ that reveals what a low life type this candidate is. I thought the Jew abuse displayed on many National Billboards was probably the work of the Coatsville Kaiser’s servants, but it’s now looking more like the strategy of the Labour War-room.

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  11. PaulL (6,013 comments) says:

    @Yoza: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/To_call_a_spade_a_spade. Comes from classical greek, and the classical greeks didn’t call West Indian migrants spades. Some in America think it’s racist and so avoid it.

    I’m not so fussed at the shylock bit of it, I can accept that many people wouldn’t see that as a jewish slur as opposed to a general money lender slur (and until this came up I hadn’t myself generally seen it as a jewish slur v’s a money lender slur). The same as I think Key was right to say that sugar daddy doesn’t always mean sexual. The outrage over the specific terms is I think over the top.

    But as others have noted, the entirety of that tirade was bemusing, he’s describing a quite different John Key than the one NZers see every day. So long as Labour keep doing that they won’t connect with voters. And as long as Labour keep painting National as some sort of far right baby eating monsters, they’ll keep giving people the impression that electing Labour would mean a very significant change. But if people are generally happy with how things are going at the moment, why would they want a significant change?

    National had to come to the middle to win against Helen Clark. Labour will have to come to the middle to win against John Key. This current leadership appear incapable of doing that, and accordingly I doubt they’ll be elected.

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  12. BeaB (2,104 comments) says:

    Pete George
    Please please can people work out the difference between being in the firing line and being in the line of fire. Just picture each in your mind and it may help.
    But if BBC, TVNZ and Radio NZ cannot spot the difference I guess we’ll have to put up with the idiotic illogic.

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  13. Pete George (23,420 comments) says:

    … ‘calling a spade,” a spade”‘ which is probably far more widespread. A ‘spade’ being a derogatory British term for West Indian immigrants.

    The term goes back a lot longer than the ‘West Indies’ let along immigration from there to Britain.

    Its ultimate source is a phrase in classical Greek. Plutarch’s Apophthegmata Laconica (178B) has την σκαφην σκαφην λεγοντας (ten skafen skafen legontas). σκαφη (skafe) means “basin, trough”, but Erasmus mis-translated it (as if from σπάθη spáthe) as ligo “shovel” in his Apophthegmatum opus. Lucian De Hist. Conscr. (41) has τα συκα συκα, την σκαφην δε σκαφην ονομασων (ta suka suka, ten skafen de skafen onomason) “calling a fig a fig, and a trough a trough”.

    The phrase was introduced to English in 1542 in Nicolas Udall’s translation of Erasmus, Apophthegmes, that is to saie, prompte saiynges. First gathered by Erasmus:

    Philippus aunswered, that the Macedonians wer feloes of no fyne witte in their termes but altogether grosse, clubbyshe, and rusticall, as they whiche had not the witte to calle a spade by any other name then a spade.

    It is evident that the word spade refers to the instrument used to move earth, a very common tool. The same word was used in England, Denmark, and in the Netherlands, Erasmus’ country of origin.

    It has no relevance here.

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  14. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    When the third-rate lawyer Greg Presland, aka Micky Savage, gets involved things usually turn to shit.
    The editor of The sub-Standard combines hopelessness and useless of the highest order.

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  15. stephieboy (2,625 comments) says:

    Yoza,

    Yoza, and the word nigger is another ” aging pejorative.” and it’s use still justified or understandable .?

    ” Calling a spade a spade ” is I believe very old going back to Plutarch and not originally related to West Indian Immigrants .!

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  16. alwyn (409 comments) says:

    I thin we should adopt a conspiracy theory interpretation of what is going on.

    I notice that on the crazier left-wing blogs, such as “The Standard” and even more so in the ravings of Bradbury, the defacing of the National Party Key billboards is blamed on National Party members themselves. This, it is claimed, is so that the public will fell sympathy for National and lose interest in Labour.

    I propose that the same sort of situation is true with Greg Presland. He is a National Party plant who is, very successfully, bringing scorn and opprobrium on the Labour Party. Nobody could really be so stupid as to make the number of balls-ups as he does, unless they were doing it deliberately. He is there to bring Cunliffe down, and he is very good at what he does.

    Only a Genius could have inveigled Cunliffe into pretending he needed a Trust and doesn’t know who his backers are. Only a very clever plotter could have arranged an anti-Semitic post from a Labour candidate on Facebook.

    Who but a great actor could play the role of a Cunliffe acolyte while sabotaging the campaign? The man is obviously the greatest spy since Victor Sorge. All hail the saboteur Greg Presland, National’s greatest undercover agent.

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  17. ShawnLH (4,481 comments) says:

    Is anyone seriously expecting Nazi boy Yowza to have a clue about history?

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  18. Liam Hehir (123 comments) says:

    Yoza, just so that you know, a spade is a digging implement.

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  19. Pete George (23,420 comments) says:

    BeaB – a day for quotes.

    fir′ing line`
    n.
    1. a. the positions at which troops are stationed to fire upon the enemy or targets.
    b. the troops firing from this line.
    2. the forefront of any action or activity, esp. a controversy

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  20. coolas (115 comments) says:

    Denigrating politicians in Election Season is par for the course. Wasn’t David Farrar responsible for comparing Helen Clarke to corrupt dictators in 2008? Not racist but still degrading and insulting. Helen Clarke was neither corrupt nor a dictator. John Key’s mother was Jewish. Shylock was a Jewish money lender. John Key was a money lender. And I think there’s more truth in the Key smear then Farrar’s Clarke smear. Both are reprehensible and come from malicious minds.. To quote another great Shakespearian character; Gertrude in Hamlet, “I think the lady doth protest too much.”

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  21. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    Richard Sorge.

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  22. ShawnLH (4,481 comments) says:

    “Shylock is quite an aging pejorative,”

    Translation: “Shylock is an anti-Jewish pejorative and is thus politically correct. Anti-Semitic attacks are hoaxes perpetrated by the global Jewish-Zionist elite and their puppet Shylock John Key and should be ignored. We should be focused on how many babies the Jews killed today. I am not a lunatic, my mother says so.”

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  23. Maggy Wassilieff (313 comments) says:

    @ Coolas

    “I think the lady doth protest too much.”

    In my book it says

    The lady doth protest too much, methinks”

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  24. Harriet (4,741 comments) says:

    Doesn’t suprise me, everytime I questioned why TS was supporting Hamas, Micky Savage nearly always replied. And always disagreeing with what I said:

    They all went right off when I repeated the line from the British Commander in Afganistan that Israel was the most moral millitary in history, and that they nearly always use extremely costly guided missiles, which are also lightly packed so as to limit collateral damage. Under the rules of war they don’t have to do either.

    I don’t think Micky was replying out of having good manners. He sounded realy pissed off. But then they do hate me at TS.

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  25. Huevon (213 comments) says:

    This post is also a good segue to pointing out that the chick who played Portia in Al Pacino’s Merchant of Venice was a stone cold fox….

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  26. alwyn (409 comments) says:

    Thank you mikenmild.
    I couldn’t be bothered looking it up and probably got confused as to whether he most resembled Richard Sorge or was as funny as Victor Borge.

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  27. King Kong (39 comments) says:

    I prefer the quote from the 3rd act of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” when Lysander says “could thou ever knowest a greater or fairer douche nozzle than David Cunliffe”.

    Top play that!

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  28. David Garrett (6,912 comments) says:

    Coolas: You might be a bit more convincing if you knew how to spell the name of the woman you admire so much…

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  29. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    Huevon
    ‘the chick who played Portia in Al Pacino’s Merchant of Venice was a stone cold fox….’
    Lynn Collins. Also very hot in John Carter.

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  30. GPT1 (2,115 comments) says:

    I hate to defend Presland et al but I’m a lawyer, enjoy Shakespeare (mainly the histories) but Shylock was not a term that I could recall prior to this.

    Then again I tend to use insults that I know the meaning of.

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  31. Keeping Stock (10,254 comments) says:

    Let’s not forget the “Shylock” slur was not used in isolation. It was part of this sentence:

    “Shonky Jonkey Shylock..nasty little creep with the nasty evil and vindictive sneer…”

    But the only thing he has apologised for is the Shylock reference, not the rest of the abusive tirade, which he presumably still stands by. If that is how he interprets “Vote positive”, I’d hate to see him on a negative day :D

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  32. G152 (264 comments) says:

    Chances are that Liebor were behind the slur and the ‘final warning’ from Goneliffe is just more window dressing as they face electoral disaster

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  33. Harriet (4,741 comments) says:

    “….Shylock was a Jewish money lender. John Key was a money lender….”

    Hardly.

    As far as I understand Key spent nearly all his time in the private sector in FX. He later spent sometime probably overseeing ‘some form of money lending’ at ML amongst other things while being the boss. His very last job I believe.

    Most Shylocks -‘so called money hungrey Jews’ – is an old derogatory name for Jews, and the likes of Zurich Switzerland are equated with that.

    John Key did not work in the likes of Zurich, or any other areas of finance where ‘Jews’ are concentrated in.

    Presland would know all that.

    He would also know that Key was educated in economics at Canterbury University of New Zealand.

    Presland is showing himself to be nothing more than a hopeless day dreamer.

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  34. Razorlight (52 comments) says:

    Make sure you go to Open Mike on the Standard and ask the question to Micky Savage. Get in early tomorrow and find out why he allowed the comments to remain on his Facebook page.

    You will run the riskLlprent the Great banning you for life, but the decent left leaning people need to be made aware of what a racist bigot Presland is.

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  35. PaulL (6,013 comments) says:

    @Coolas: I think the comparison of Helen Clark (and other supporters of the electoral finance act) was in relation to the muzzling of free speech. You might disagree with the comparison, but it was for something that Helen Clark (and others) actually did. To the extent that Shylock was a Jewish slur, that’s attacking Key for something he was born (he’s not a practicing Jew). That is why it’s seen as racism, and why it is far more reprehensible.

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  36. band4u (18 comments) says:

    How can calling someone Shylock possibly be Anti-Semitic.

    Shylock was a Jewish money-lender in a Shakesperian play. Couldn’t it just as easily be seen as anti Money Traders??? Also isnt in an accurate description of Key? He is a Jewish banker? Good grief. How touchy we have all become. Does this mean we can no longet say someone is Catholic or Maoric or heaven forbid a Catholic Maori.

    They say you reap what you sow. Anyone who has witnessed Key’s, Joyce’s or English’s bullying disrespectful arrogance in Parliament at question time over the last 6 years may well conclude they have bought this nastiness on themselves.

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  37. Rex Widerstrom (5,342 comments) says:

    He went even further on the Facebook post, calling Mr Key a “nasty little creep … with a nasty, evil, vindictive sneer”.

    This is not the standard of discourse worthy of someone who wants to be an MP and it is certainly not “vote positive”.

    I totally agree. However it is no worse than “two Wongs don’t make a white” from Peters, “putting the Ming back into farming” from Prosser, nor the plethora of abuse suffered by anyone who dare take issue with the wisdom of Lole-Taylor.

    Yet these sorts of things, apparently, are just “Winston being Winston”, and that particular bunch of vitriolic racists will be warmly welcomed as part of the next Key government.

    How about everyone in politics starts displaying a consistent morality, hmmm?

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  38. Yogibear (359 comments) says:

    Band4u

    Have you actually read Merchant of Venice?

    You claim its factually correct whilst ignoring the context in which Shylock was portrayed in the play.

    It must be crowded on the head of the pin that you and Judith dance on.

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  39. georgebolwing (750 comments) says:

    @ band4u

    Sigh.

    That Shylock is jewish and seeks to extract his “pound of flesh” from Antonio, despite Bassanio’s offer of 6,000 ducats, twice the amount of the loan and Portia’s plea for mercy, is a key theme of the play. Ruined by Portia’s arguments, he faces the punishment of forced conversion to Christianity.

    Anyone with any understanding of the play will know that to call someone a Shylock is a racial slur.

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  40. Judith (8,531 comments) says:

    @ band4u (17 comments) says:
    August 12th, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Oh dear band4u, I hope you have thick skin. You’ve wandered into a right wing blog full of people who cannot understand why many people aren’t as in love with key as they are. They refuse to see that other people are entitled to their opinions, and don’t see the world as they do. Their way, according to them is the only right way of looking at anything – everyone else that doesn’t view issues such as these in the same way as them doesn’t deserve to live (yes, there was even a suggestion that lefties should be hung) but of course, coming from the right, that is not nasty – nastiness only comes from the left apparently. From the right it is constructive criticism – apparently!

    Best of luck ! :-)

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  41. Pete George (23,420 comments) says:

    In defence of Greg:

    weka 8.3
    12 August 2014 at 11:08 am
    How is this Presland’s fault exactly?

    Stephanie Rodgers 8.3.1
    12 August 2014 at 1:51 pm
    Because he didn’t take down the post himself/scold Gibson. Of course if he’d taken down the post and Kiwiblog had the screencap the story would be “Cunliffe ally covering up for anti-Semitic candidate” and if he’d scolded him the story would be “Cunliffe ally tries to silence candidate with inconvenient opinions” so, you know, buggered no matter what you do.

    http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-12082014/#comment-864570

    The comment is not “Greg’s fault” but he could take some responsibility for the embarrassment that ensued.

    He could have added a comment something like “Steve, that’s a totally unacceptable comment to make, especially with our emphasis on #VotePositive – please apologise for the reference to Shylock (if you don’t know why do some research) and for the rest of the abusive comment.”

    Then after a day or two it could have been recorded and deleted.

    But Greg may have developed too much of a habit of with letting go all sorts of online abuse without taking any action or speaking up against it.

    (Same for weka and Stephanie for that matter, they turn a blind eye to a lot at The Standard and are happy to join mobs of harassment)

    He may have just approved of the comment quietly to himself not thinking of decency or possible repercussions.

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  42. unaha-closp (1,155 comments) says:

    Judith,

    We do admittedly have some degenerative, insult prone, a-holes on this site who stoop to vindictive attacks. They’re internet dwellers who shout with the crowd, a little louder and more stringent – they make noise on right wing websites and talkback radio.

    If they were on the left and from Timaru – they’d be standing for parliament.

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  43. Yoza (1,763 comments) says:

    PaulL (5,919 comments) says:
    August 12th, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    @Yoza: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/To_call_a_spade_a_spade. Comes from classical greek, and the classical greeks didn’t call West Indian migrants spades. Some in America think it’s racist and so avoid it.,

    ;

    Pete George (23,005 comments) says:
    August 12th, 2014 at 2:30 pm

    … ‘calling a spade,” a spade”‘ which is probably far more widespread. A ‘spade’ being a derogatory British term for West Indian immigrants.

    The term goes back a lot longer than the ‘West Indies’ let along immigration from there to Britain.

    stephieboy (2,346 comments) says:
    August 12th, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    Yoza,

    Yoza, and the word nigger is another ” aging pejorative.” and it’s use still justified or understandable .?

    ” Calling a spade a spade ” is I believe very old going back to Plutarch and not originally related to West Indian Immigrants .!

    ShawnLH (4,077 comments) says:
    August 12th, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    Is anyone seriously expecting Nazi boy Yowza to have a clue about history?

    Liam Hehir (113 comments) says:
    August 12th, 2014 at 2:38 pm

    Yoza, just so that you know, a spade is a digging implement.

    I appreciate the effort to which you have all gone to help me with the origin of the term, ‘to call a spade a spade’.

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  44. PaulL (6,013 comments) says:

    Well Yoza, it seemed that since it was one of the many things that you’re wrong about, and one in which you’d have to agree you were actually wrong on, that it was worth taking the free kick. Next trick is for you to consider which of your other beliefs might also be wrong :-)

    @Judith, @band4u: yes, there are some ferals here. But it helps if you have a sensible argument, and arguing that Shylock isn’t a racial slur isn’t one. Arguing that many people don’t know that is reasonable, but I’m pretty sure that any scholar could tell you that in the play it’s a racial/religious slur.

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  45. Inthisdress (176 comments) says:

    I think this episode merely indicates that the only thing more dishonest than a vindictive, ‘sneering’ money-trader Jew is a WASP lawyer. This is up there with the recent race-baiting of Moari by ACT.
    These lying lowlifes make these sick observations then hide behind ‘Freedom of speech’ or pretend ignorance when caught out in their
    manipulate, seedy little slurs.
    so far, we have racism, antisemitism
    hate-speech anti-immigration zenophobia and bigotry and we are
    supposed to be ok with it, because, as the National Socialists informed us, the end always justifies the means.
    Seig heil Labour.
    Seig heil Cunliffe.

    Seig Heil Cunliffe.

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  46. itstricky (1,761 comments) says:

    And chanting ‘ Seig Heil Cunliffe ‘ is putting yourself on the moral high ground, of course.

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  47. itstricky (1,761 comments) says:

    Judith, @band4u: yes, there are some ferals here. But it helps if you have a sensible argument, and arguing that Shylock isn’t a racial slur isn’t one.

    Is arguing that ‘sugar daddy’ has a sexual meaning a sensible argument in your book of sensible arguments according to Paul?

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  48. RF (1,363 comments) says:

    Never mind Preslands days are numbered. Timmy Barnett has him in his sights. Letting down the team etc…

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  49. Maggy Wassilieff (313 comments) says:

    Gosh its interesting that some folks posting here seem to confuse brought and bought consistently.
    Fascinating that they travel under different names. Such a coincidence.

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  50. lolitasbrother (621 comments) says:

    Greg Presland used to write as Micky Savage, and to be honest he was quite a gentleman to me.
    But once he went across to racist and violent drivel “Labour Party Standard” he turned sad and weak.
    Lynn Prentice Lprent must be the dogs crap, dysentry, dog die in gutter , nothing will cure you, from the dogs arse salmonella
    backside of Lennons ebola tomb.

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  51. Inthisdress (176 comments) says:

    If you can’t tell the difference between genuine antisemitism and ironic critique then I guess the where the moral highground is will be largely academic, itstricky.

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  52. coolas (115 comments) says:

    Gee, David Garrote. for a convicted fraudster and disgraced MP you’re awful picky about a spelling mistake

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  53. PaulL (6,013 comments) says:

    @itstricky, arguing that one of the meanings of sugar daddy is a sexual one is a reasonable argument. As is saying that the Prime Minister of NZ probably should have known that was one of the meanings and been more careful.

    I’m not as sure that he did know that meaning and deliberately used it to create offence, but that’s something people can probably disagree on. In my view it’s not the kind of thing he does, but I know other people think he eats babies, so no doubt this wouldn’t be a stretch for them.

    In the case Gibson, I also think he should have known the meaning, but accept that he potentially didn’t. It didn’t immediately come to mind for me, and I’m reasonably well educated, I see no reason to hold others to a higher standard than I hold myself to. But as with Key I think he should have been more careful. But I don’t agree with @band4u that it doesn’t have an anti-semitic meaning – once you check the meanings it pretty clearly does, and it’s a spectacularly bad choice of words given that Key actually has Jewish heritage.

    The big difference between the two is that Key clearly used it in the way he claims he meant it – pointing out that Harre was a sellout. I don’t think he was using it to suggest that Harre was sleeping with Dotcom. In the case of Gibson, it was in the middle of a tirade of other offensive stuff, this is just the most offensive word in it. Even without that word he was showing exceptionally poor judgement.

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  54. Pete George (23,420 comments) says:

    “Greg Presland used to write as Micky Savage”

    He still does (up until yesterday) write as mickysavage at The Standard.

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  55. altiora (242 comments) says:

    Aren’t the Left just being held to the standard they expect all centre-right people to adhere to? That is to say, if you write or say something that “could be construed” as offensive, then this is enough for you to be hounded by media, made to resign, lose your job etc, and that all pleas of “I didn’t intend it to be offensive” are to be dismissed as self-serving.

    All I can say is that this anti-Semetic crap is disguisting, but it is good that the hard Left are showing their true colours; and this sort of behaviour will result in National and Key’s popularity going through the roof. Long may it continue, so long as centre-right people do not emulate this crap.

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  56. itstricky (1,761 comments) says:

    The big difference between the two is that Key clearly used it in the way he claims he meant it – pointing out that Harre was a sellout. I don’t think he was using it to suggest that Harre was sleeping with Dotcom. In the case of Gibson, it was in the middle of a tirade of other offensive stuff, this is just the most offensive word in it. Even without that word he was showing exceptionally poor judgement.

    Yes, Gibson’s big mistake was the tirade that came before the offensive word.

    I don’t believe that Key can claim “plausible denial” of the sexual meaning of ‘sugar daddy’, however. No one I have ever met has ever used that word without referring to the sexual connotations. Far less likely than something obscure like shylock.

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  57. Inthisdress (176 comments) says:

    Itstricky arguing that because you and most of the people you know aren’t familiar with Shylock or Haven’t read Shakespeare does not render the comment obscure, it more
    illustrates a lack of
    knowledge. This geyser
    who fancies himself as
    ‘Mickey Savage’ is
    evidently no stranger to
    the symbolic importance
    of name. I’d hazard to
    guess as a lawyer,
    possibly widely
    read and educated, he is
    no stranger
    to the antisemitism in
    Shylock. I bet he
    considered ‘Fagin’ but
    resiled from it as too
    obvious.

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  58. Nookin (3,253 comments) says:

    ” No one I have ever met has ever used that word without referring to the sexual connotations”

    This suggests to me that your range of acquaintances is limited to a room of mirrors.

    The term is used extensively without any sexual connotations. I posted yesterday that the term has been used in a court decision when considering the interpretation of finance documents and not many people gets their rocks off in that endeavour.

    You are like Judith, you take the most confined interpretation to fit your pre-selected conclusion.

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  59. Psycho Milt (2,401 comments) says:

    I’m not as sure that he did know that meaning and deliberately used it to create offence…

    I’m the same age as Key, and am as well aware as he will be that no-one in this country has ever referred to a woman as having a ‘sugar daddy’ without making a sexual inference and expecting the listener to understand that inference. Pretending otherwise is either disingenuous or political spin.

    The big difference between the two is that Key clearly used it in the way he claims he meant it – pointing out that Harre was a sellout.

    He clearly used it as what he considered a plausibly deniable way of insulting his opponent. Along the same lines, Gibson could claim that he clearly used the term in the way he claims he meant it – pointing out that Key gained wealth through usury. It doesn’t wash.

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  60. Inthisdress (176 comments) says:

    I agree with psycho milt about Key’s plausble deniability angle. But that does not change the anti-semitic nature of the other guy’s posting, or whether he too has engaged in plausible deniability.

    The bottom line is whose word do you choose to trust – a National-supporting jew-boy money trader or a Labour-supporting WASP Lawyer?

    And then you have to ask yourself why.

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  61. Mark (1,467 comments) says:

    ” Steve Gibson also claims that he was not aware of the meaning of the term.”

    So Gibson is either stupid or racist – either way he has no place in parliament.

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  62. altiora (242 comments) says:

    @itstricky: even at its worse interpretation — ie that sugar daddy implied sexual favours given and received — there is simply no comparison with the anti-Semetic rubbish that has resulted in centuries of persecution and the deaths of many millions. So please stop trying to make false comparisons. Key’s comment was more one aimed at Harre’s political beliefs, less so against her as a person.

    The Shylock comment was said in the context of a diatribe against Key personally, and the carry on about sneering etc is nothing less than a verbal description of how “money hungry Jews” have been presented in popular representations over the ages. I call BS on the “I didn’t know Shylock was a Jew”. Shylock’s Jewishness, and whether Shakespeare was an anti-Semite, is the central theme of pretty much all academic discussion of the Merchant of Venice, including in the past and current English syllabus in New Zealand schools.

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