Sometime’s a cigar is only a cigar

An MP who had been upset by something John Key had done was at a meeting with him.

The Prime Minister, knowing he wasn’t in his MP’s good books, made a self-depreciating joke about it.

It was exactly the sort of joke he made about not being welcome at a Tuhoe dinner.

Part of his charm is his ability to laugh at himself and I’ve heard him make similar, self depreciating jokes several times.

I am certain that was all he was doing in this instance.

Not everyone sees it that way.

Over at Tumeke! Bomber and Tim think he was referring to cannibalism.  Deborah thinks it was ignorant and offensive.

On the other hand Kiwiblog says his own sense of humour is one reason he’d never be an MP;  Keeping Stock thinks people should lighten up and  was inspired to make a contribution to New Zealand Music Month. Something Should Go Here thinks it was a good joke.

Macdoctor thinks it was a clever but that would mean John was being deliberately offensive and I’m sure he wasn’t.

It was a joke, directed at himself and while I can see how some people might find offensive meaning in it I have no doubt that wasn’t his intent.

Sometimes a cigar is only a cigar but people will always be able to make something else of it.

11 Responses to Sometime’s a cigar is only a cigar

  1. scrubone says:

    Macdoctor thinks it was a clever…?


  2. Neil says:

    Key made an apology against himself. Great ! If HC had done it she would have got away with it from the media.I get the feeling that the msm are beginning an attempt to gang up on Key.About time to revert to media type !!
    The whole thing needed to be shown on video not through the reporting of text – one would need to see body language, facial features etc when Key was making those comments. A storm in a tea cup about nothing.
    Key is a real person, not closeted in a Maxwell Smart cone of silence !!!!!


  3. Bearhunter says:

    Whatever it was, it certainly wasn’t aimed at himself. It was aimed pretty squarely at Tuhoe. And can someone please tell our prime minister that self-depreciating does not mean self-deprecating? IT annoys me when our so-called leaders can’t speak coherently..


  4. Tired Farmer says:

    In reality, Politics are a joke.

    Guess who should lighten up?


  5. Mindy says:

    His intent doesn’t matter. I don’t intend to kill anyone when I drive my car and so far I haven’t but if I ever do the fact that I didn’t intend to will mean nothing, they will still be dead. He didn’t intend to insult anyone, but he did. He should have simply apologised instead of this “can’t you take a joke” crap he went on with. What’s wrong with a straight out apology? I suspect he didn’t ‘intend’ to apologise at all.


  6. Richard says:

    Have been at countless hui where similar things have been said; its always delivered lightheardly and accepted as such, even when the subject outside the occasion may be unhumorous. Key made the initial remark- about cooking- at a dinner with Ngati Porou. Those present would have laughed loudly.

    The MSM introduced the term “cannibalism”-shame on them.

    Tuhoe are exploiting JK’s remarks and perhaps the error of a promise by him for ownership of a mountain(do not know the exact details)-encouraged by Tipene O’Regan of Ngai Tahu (with reference to Aoraki-Mt Cook). Properly, in my view, Ngai Tahu made the best decision for all of us.
    Tuhoe? Get a life- as they say.


  7. No maori would want to eat John Key anyway.
    He is too skinny.
    My Maori friends tell me they like fatty meat as it is tastier.
    Gerry Brownlee better watch out then!


  8. Fredinthegrass says:

    {The MSM introduced the term “canniblism” – shame on them.}

    Well said Richard.
    Lacking any sort of professional journalism, the story was an out and out media ‘beatup’. John Key knew Tuhoe were pretty upset with him so made,
    IMHO, an innocent comment.
    Interesting to hear the main spokesman for Tuhoe acknowledge this morning on the radio he was not taking the aside as a personal affront.


  9. G says:

    I have absolutely no doubt that it was intended to be a joke, with no malicious intent.

    But I am equally certain that the timing was in poor taste.

    Perhaps people need to be a bit more informed about what Tuhoe’s claims are about – the Crown waged war against its own citizens, sacked and looted their homes and dstroyed their crops – during the winter. It was poor judgment to make light of Tuhoe and the very difficult week that they have had.

    The fact that Tuhoe are even at the negotiation table is a huge political shift and an attempt at building a good faith relationship. They must be wondering why they bothered.

    And worse, he repeated the ‘joke’!


  10. homepaddock says:

    Scrubone that was a stray a.

    Mindy I agtree an apology should be an a proper apology but intent does matter.I you deliberately drive your car at someone its worse than if you hit them by accident and it’s different again if someone pushes someone in front of you.

    As Richard said it was the media who introduced cannibalsim – I didn’t think about that until it was pushed in front of me.

    G I agree that Tuhoe were treated appallingly.


  11. Mindy says:

    I was having the very same discussion this morning homepaddock which helped clarify my thinking. Yes, my intent does matter when my punishment is being meted out, but the person I hit is still dead so the outcome for them is still the same. Now that more information has come out about John Key and what he actually said the public reaction will change, but his comments were still insulting and so he should have apologised properly. There is obviously a journalist or two more culpable, but getting an apology out of them is worse than trying to get one from a pollie.


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