Toby Manhire 's Opinion

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

Toby Manhire: Dear Mr Key, pick me, pick me

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Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig.
Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig.

With the general election a year away, it's only right that John Key should be looking to get his ducks in a row, however lame some of them might appear to be. And after the shemozzle around pre-vote supporting-party winks last time round, who could blame him were he to ask the minor parties to draft expressions of interest.

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Dear John

Once upon a time there was a king called John. John was a good king, but sometimes he was a bit too liberal, especially when it came to promiscuous harpies, and the people rose up and gave him a very necessary smack on the botty and said unto him, "Lo, go unto Albany and find thyself a Colin!"

Do you see what I'm getting at, prime minister?

The Colin Craig Conservative Party, led by me, Colin Craig, is ready to say the things that people are thinking, but which they won't say out loud because they know that they're probably appalling things to think.

Enough PC gone mad. From 2014, the CCCP is going madder.

We stand ready to support a National-led government. For a few concessions, I'll stand alongside you, speaking my mind. For a lot of concessions, I'll just stand alongside you.

Our core requirements are these: immediately cease giving away land to the Maori and gays. Outlaw deviancy. Make families compulsory. Ban filth. Replace the minister of climate change with a minister of circulation of the planets. Fancy dress to be made compulsory during parliamentary question time. I love fancy dress! Judith Collins to be appointed minister in charge of protecting Colin Craig's reputation, and empowered to rain fire and brimstone upon those who would mock him (me). Red tops to be made illegal, if you know what I mean.

Yours sincerely

Colin Craig, leader of the Colin Craig Conservative Party

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Dear John

As you've probably heard, John, a little bit of history was made last weekend, when approximately 30 United Future delegates gathered for the annual party conference in a tidy room on the second floor of the Johnsonville Community Centre. It marked the beginning, I think it's fair to say, of a commonsense revolution in New Zealand politics. And John, this is important, I want you to be part of that journey.

Calm, sensible, rational, reasonable. Not for Peter Dunne the lurid headline-hungry hyperbole expounded by so many in politics today. You know, like the Green Taliban and that crackpot Colin Craig.

Listen, you know I love you, but I just can't take this. You know I love you, but I'm playing for keeps.

Forget all that nonsense about the spying report that I did not leak even though I told the journalist to whom it was leaked that I was about to leak it to her. That, John, is the stuff of history. Let's walk together, hand in hand, from Johnsonville and into the future. I could always walk a few steps behind you if you prefer.

John. Prime Minister. Pick me. Hold me. Are you even listening to me?

Yours truly, Peter

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John!

Big man! ... What's cooking, good-looking? ... Just checking in to say hi and that we're good to go again in Epsom again ... Three more years! ... True blue! ... Let Banksie be your footstool, baby ... Won't keep you, just keeping my head down, like you said ... The legal stuff will blow over, one of those things ... Random! ... But seriously, JK, know this: when Act is returned to Parliament in 2014, I shall be brutal and uncompromising in seeking a number of important policy concessions ... just let us know what they are! ... P.S. Would you like a muffin?

Banksie x

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Tena koe John

This is not a Tena koe John letter. It is a Dear John letter. It's not you, it's us.

Te Ururoa Flavell, co-leader, Maori Party.

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To the Right Honourable John Key, "prime minister"

Just look at yourself for a minute. You're a dodgy, petulant, short-sighted, self-serving junk bond trader, a shameless, ignominious, incompetent, irresponsible, infantile scaredy-cat perched atop a crony government that has proved itself to be outrageous, unprincipled, undemocratic, privacy-invading, power-abusing and corrupt.

So what can you offer? Let's talk.

The Right Honourable Winston Peters

- NZ Herald

Toby Manhire

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 listener.co.nz, 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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