Toby Manhire is a Wellington-bred, Auckland-based journalist.

Toby Manhire: Trying for a clean break after digging the dirt

Photo / Thinkstock
Photo / Thinkstock

FROM: >Team-Key-war-room<


RE: Strategy update #822

Let's not mince words. It's been a tough few weeks. That Hager bloke dumped a whale-sized firecracker into our rowboat just as we were getting a good bit of go-forward in the rolling maul. Still, speaking as I do to the ordinary New Zealanders who compile our internal polling, our counter-strategy - Project Colonic Irrigation - seems to have done the trick. With a bit of luck we're now rid of her. Sorry, rid of it, that should be.

JK smashed both debates, winner by a mile. He is leading the charge, proving again he's the country's finest prime minister, rascal, and debate moderator. Soon, a tax cut, which will take the form of a promise to promise to guarantee a tax cut in a while. That's right. With all due respect to our opponents, only #TeamKey offers a compelling vision for hardworking New Zealanders as articulated in the form of an economy that has returned to surplus, fixing up some rural roads and a dedication to duck-face selfies.




RE: Dirty Politics

This confounded rain, will it never stop? Book exposes National Party links to sewer-rat attack-blogger. Public punishes us. DC wins debate. Public punishes us. PM misleads public on Labour tax policy. Public punishes us. Terrifying to think what it will do for our polling if the Argentinians win tomorrow night.

No. There's only one thing for it. David, you must apologise for being Nicky Hager.




RE: inquiry?

There is no place for egotism in politics but just quietly we are deeply smug about outshining everyone in the debates. We have asked all the ombudsmen to investigate which party first demanded a full commission of inquiry into dirty politics, and have contacted every authority we can think of to request a thorough and transparent probe into the outcome. Following an internal inquiry we've clarified our position on the Whale Oil hacker. We accept the public interest argument, but to be honest it would be a lot cooler if there were co-hackers rather than just the one.



TO: >Intermana-hightable<


What a bunch of flibbertigibbets, lickspittles, tosspots. These pubescent so-called journalists have the temerity to tell me that my job is not to tell them what their job is. Pipsqueaks. Tell you what, we totally bossed that debate, blitzed the bastards. What else? Oh yeah: who the hell does Georgina Beyer think she is, Edward bloody Snowden? Speaking of which, you better have a thermonuclear flaming rabbit to pull out of your hat on September 15, Kimbo. The way things are going, we're just about borked unless you can produce MH bloody 370 live on stage.

PC xx



RE: Winston

Think that's funny putting Winston Peters in a Chinese restaurant, do you? Well I'll tell you something. If it isn't obvious to you that Winston Peters won that debate then you must be a bit dim sum in the head. That's right. If you want to ask me about bottom lines, that's just fine, because New Zealand politics need to be cleansed of this poison and I won't budge from this position: it is a rock-solid, unequivocal, cast-iron guarantee that New Zealand First will not work with anyone who thinks that they can swan in here and start litigating deal-breakers and bottom lines before the people of New Zealand have had their say. That's what I'm telling you. Ha! Thank you very much.


FROM: YouKnowItMakesSense46@hotmail. com


Hi-de-hi, bitches. You won the debate by a mile, Jamie, not that the great seething masses of pinko halfwits have the brain to see it. They'll come around. Dave, keep at it. We will not rest until you've pissed on every lamp-post in Epsom.



TO: Colin's Angels

RE: Winston

He just completely ignored me again. All I ask for is a smile, some tiny sign of recognition. I can't eat, can't sleep. It's tearing me up inside. Anyhow, listen guys - whoop, whoop, that's the sound of the victory siren! - we totally amazeballsed that debate. So good. Keep smiling!




RE: Let's do it!

Who fancies a planning breakfast early October?




RE: despicable

Colonic irrigation? That sounds serious.

Love you,

R x

- NZ Herald

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Toby Manhire is a Wellington-bred, Auckland-based journalist.

Toby Manhire is a Wellington bred, Auckland based journalist. He writes a weekly column for the NZ Herald, the NZ Listener's Internaut column, blogs for, and contributes to the Guardian. From 2000 to 2010 he worked at the Guardian in London, and edited the 2012 book The Arab Spring: Rebellion, Revolution and a New World Order.

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