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Kiwis Throw Politicians to the Dogs.

I always knew that the New Zealanders were different to everyone else.  These are sensible people, they are throwing their politicians to the dogs [^].  Unfortunately not quite literally!

The New Zealand petfood company, Mastepet has create dog toys modelled on the two leading Kiwi political leaders – the incumbent Helen Clark and challenger John Key.  The sales of the toys will be used to unofficially track voter sentiment in the lead-up to the 8th November election.  The toy that gets thrown to the dogs the most wins.

 The website has also issued some guidelines for the use of the toy:

  1. Remember your purchase is part of a political poll – your vote counts
  2. Wear suitable ear protection when supervising your dog’s playtime with the toy. As with real politicians, the squealing can become quite deafening.
  3. Keep dog on a leash if around real politicians. Masterpet does not accept any liability for dog toy mistaken identity.
  4. When choosing a toy, take your dog along with you. Man’s best friend doesn’t like political ideologies thrust upon him/her more than the next person.
  5. If your dog destroys the politician in the first five minutes don’t hold this against your dog – the media do it every week!  ( [^])

Many comenters on the site have complained that the “Hulun” Clark toy has been made to look less unattractive than the real-life version.  Is this so that the dogs don’t get scared-off?

Clark & Keys Politician Masterpet Dog Toys

Clark & Keys Politician Masterpet Dog Toys

The "Real" Helen Clark - 37th Prime Minister of New Zealand

The "Real" Helen Clark - 37th Prime Minister of New Zealand

“Lies, Damn Lies and . . . . “

I’m still tossing up the the continuation of this – Statistics or Politicians!  Here in Australia we are in the grip of a Federal Election – there are eleven days of pre-election hell still to go through.  And then there will be the post-election gloating . . . . .

Rudd and Howard

Anyway I think that that just about sums up my feelings on that particular subject, on with the post.  In a pre-campaign election campaign (that will take some explaining, but apparently it’s all tied-up in who gets to pay for the pollies gadding-around electioneering – before the “official” launch they can pay for travel and so-on out of their electorate fund, after that the party pays) where the two main parties are trying to out spend each other with their “me-too” policies, there hasn’t been too much to distinguish either party.  So what happens?  Well it seems that the reporters / media agencies need to go and stir-up something, this comes in the form of the “Who would you rather see in the nude?” survey.

Well it turns out that with this amazing piece of social research – 34% wanted to see Rudd in the Nudd, with 16% wanting Little Johnny (source Reuters [^]).  What no-one seems to mention is, that by my calculations, an amazing 50% of the population would rather have the politicians with their clothes on!  I’m just amazed about the half that would like to see one or the other with no clothes.  It just goes to show that the adage that there are “Lies, damn lies and statistics” still holds, but the Politicians and Reporters who use them are just as bad!