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Teapot spill seems to confirm Peters’ claims

Jan 26th, 2012 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News


By Callum Valentine and Gareth Wallace

EVERYTHING quoted from the teapot tapes before the election has proved “deadly accurate”, says Winston Peters, after the teapot tape leaked online earlier today. 

Winston Peters called those questioning his accuracy on the tapes “total fools”  and says his pre-election comments on the matter were spot on.

In a speech in Invercargill just before last year’s election, Peters accused the Prime Minister of saying that his “constituents are dying” – which can be heard 4 minutes 12 seconds into the recording.

The New Zealand Herald reports:

Prime Minister John Key has apologised to older New Zealanders if they were offended by his comments in the infamous teapot tape, which has been leaked online today.

But he has not listened to the tape himself, and maintains that the contents of the conversation between him and Epsom MP John Banks are “pretty bland”.

On the leaked tape – posted on YouTube and SoundCloud around lunchtime today – Key and Banks discuss Peters’ possible return to Parliament.

“Not a chance,” says Key, before citing New Zealand First’s low polling numbers.

While John Key’s clairvoyance may have been advesely affected by the Tea-tape scandle, the general feeling now that the tapes have been released is that they were not worth the wait.

After being emailed to a number of people this morning, and posted on both sites, the noisy, partly inaudible tea-tape has been spread far and wide.

The Johns appear to be discussing campaign strategy, and the success of their tea party media event.

“This is a very good media turnout,” says Banks. “Wherever I go there are numbers,” Key replies.

The two leaders go on to discuss their strategies for re-election.

“We’ve done a lot of stuff together, yep, and we’re on the same page,” says Key.

“The reason I haven’t texted you is, it’s better if I don’t, because it puts you under pressure to say ‘he has’ or ‘he hasn’t’,” says Key.

“[I can say] I haven’t heard from the Prime Minister,”  says Banks, before clarifying that he has the correct cell phone number.

The number given in the tape appears to  be disconnected now (NewsWire tried it).

The tape effectively ends with the discovery of the recorder on the table.

“Is that yours?  Is that yours? Is that yours?”  asks Key,  “Nup,” replies Banks.

“Hey, that’s a recording device,”  Key says, before advisers sweep in.

The last two minutes of the tape are nothing but white noise, before a voice concludes with: “It’s right here and it’s still going – how do we turn it off?”

Users are being encouraged by the You Tube and SoundCloud items to seed a BitTorrent version of the file. Once a file has been spread via BitTorrent, it is hosted on users’ private computers and cannot be effectively taken down.

The file is also mirrored on direct download sites such as MediaFire.

Media law commentator Steven Price says on his blog, Media Law Journal, there are no apparent reasons why the tape cannot now be broadcast or linked to, since police have not charged anyone with illegally obtaining it.

How social media reacted to leak

The general reaction on social media has been disapointment.

“So far, all I’ve learned is cafes are very noisy,” says New Zealand Redditor Ores.

Samuel Mann tweets: “So did Winston actually hear the #teapottape, or was his version a complete fiction?”

Rich_d_rich tweets: “I wonder if John Key is asking the US to raid Google with SWAT teams and helicopters for carrying the tape?”

Richard Hills tweets: “I think they leaked it themselves to overshadow the fact Key might be breaking his promise to balance the books sooner.”

Jessica F tweets: “Listening to [the tape] only reminded me how nice it’s been to not have to listen to John Key’s voice for a couple of months.”



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