John Key puts NZ artists in their place

by Toby Manhire / 09 January, 2012
Says the PM: "While our literary heroes may never challenge the glory and respect given to our All Blacks, we still need role models to inspire us"
He may not quite be John Keats, but the New Zealand prime minister is an able self-parodist.

In a written endorsement for something called the New Zealand Literary Heritage Trail, which appears to be a pet project of the Invercargill mayor Tim Shadbolt (don’t know how far he got with it – he mentions it in this ODT piece from 2009), Key puts the role of New Zealand art and culture in its national context.

I have always believed we should enhance the literary skills of our young people and while our literary heroes may never challenge the glory and respect given to our All Blacks, we still need role models to inspire us.


This Literary Heritage Trail celebrates writers, poets and playwrights who have contributed to this young country's cultural and historical life.


I hope you will take the opportunity to be part of this journey.


 

- Hon. John Key, Prime Minister of New Zealand.


We have @theedrich to thank for bringing this affecting endorsement – which she assures us appears authentic in every way - to our attention on Twitter. She even took a photograph of the booklet, found in a Rotorua information centre:



As Giovanni Tiso points out on Twitter, the only appropriate response to Key’s words is to be found in a 1995 John Clarke/Fred Dagg sketch.

And lest we forget, Mr Key does show poetic potential. Has a New Zealand prime minister ever ad-libbed a more bewitching almost-haiku than this, from the election campaign:

The thing I know that matters


to New Zealanders is the issues


that really matter


(Update: Danyl has posted on this little gem at the Dim-Post.)

h/t @milkshakebot
MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage

Latest

Greens, Labour and NZ First need to talk coalition - James Shaw
80506 2017-09-25 07:07:30Z Politics

Greens, Labour and NZ First need to talk coalition…

by Mei Heron

Green Party leader James Shaw will push hard to be involved with any negotiations between Labour and New Zealand First.

Read more
After the election campaign highs, Winston Peters brings the buzz-kill
80500 2017-09-25 06:31:24Z Politics

After the election campaign highs, Winston Peters …

by Bevan Rapson

Could the kingmaker climb down from his high horse, please?

Read more
Young Kiwi filmmakers seek a chance for silent fame
79698 2017-09-25 00:00:00Z Movies

Young Kiwi filmmakers seek a chance for silent fam…

by Luke Jackson

The countdown is on for young Kiwi filmmakers to score their three minutes of fame.

Read more
How the media oversold standing desks as a fix for inactivity at work
80380 2017-09-25 00:00:00Z Health

How the media oversold standing desks as a fix for…

by The Conversation

When the world's first guidelines about sitting and moving at work were published, they created a media storm. But here's what was missed in the hype.

Read more
Does processed meat cause cancer?
80255 2017-09-25 00:00:00Z Nutrition

Does processed meat cause cancer?

by Jennifer Bowden

The finger is pointing at processed meats as a cause of cancer, but small-goods makers aren’t convinced.

Read more
This post-election business is anything but usual
80491 2017-09-24 09:10:53Z Politics

This post-election business is anything but usual

by Jane Clifton

For the first time in our 21 year MMP history, the prospect of the party with the biggest vote not forming the Government doesn't seem unconscionable.

Read more
Election 2017: How the battleground seats fell
80489 2017-09-24 08:21:45Z Politics

Election 2017: How the battleground seats fell

by RNZ

As predicted there were some tough battles in key electorate seats. Here's how the the votes fell yesterday.

Read more
Labour's Greg O'Connor on Ōhāriu: 'Every little thing got you over the line'
80486 2017-09-24 07:55:24Z Politics

Labour's Greg O'Connor on Ōhāriu: 'Every little th…

by Jacob McSweeny

Barring a huge turnaround in the special votes, Labour's Greg O'Connor is the new Ōhāriu MP - with a 679-vote majority at this point.

Read more