Key should apologise for insulting actor - Labour

Labour is calling on Prime Minister John Key to apologise for saying Whale Rider star Keisha Castle-Hughes should stick to acting.

Castle-Hughes is an ambassador for a Greenpeace climate change campaign urging the Government to sign up to 40 percent emissions reductions.

"My advice to Keisha is this: stick to acting," Mr Key told a business gathering of 500 people in Brisbane on Tuesday.

Since then Castle-Hughes has offered to meet Mr Key to discuss her concerns.

She said she knew a lot more about the issue than he gave her credit.

In Parliament, Acting Prime Minister Bill English was questioned about the remark.

Labour's Charles Chauvel asked: "Does the Prime Minister agree with Keisha Castle-Hughes that telling her to `stick to acting' is really odd, given that he had previously encouraged her to make a submission to the Minister for Climate Change Issues on New Zealand's pollution reduction target?"

Mr English said the PM "wholeheartedly" supported Castle-Hughes' right to have a public view about New Zealand's climate change policy.

Mr Chauvel then asked if the PM thought other actors supporting the campaign including Lucy Lawless, Robyn Malcolm, and Cliff Curtis, should stick to acting.

"And has he advised Michael Jones to `stick to rugby and keep out of politics', or do different rules apply to potential National Party recruits?"

Mr English said those in the group were all eminent New Zealand actors.

"And sticking to acting may well be a recipe for further success for them."

He said an ad campaign did not replace serious analysis and a 40 percent reduction in carbon emissions by 2020 would seriously hurt the economy and people's livelihoods.

In a later statement Mr Chauvel said Mr Key should apologise.

"Young New Zealanders, whatever their profession, should never be discouraged from taking a stand on issues they feel passionately about and the Prime Minister's decision to criticise the Kiwi actress for doing so to an overseas audience was a bad call."

He said Mr Key was not asked for an opinion on Castle-Hughes' views when he made the jibe.

"Shame on you Prime Minister. You've set a bad example. It's time to do the right thing and apologise."

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15 Comments & Questions

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What makes those in the entertainment field think they have views that are somehow more insightful than the hoi polloi.Hollywood is full of pretentious prats,let's hope NZers in the industry don't get like them,starting with Keisha

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As recently as last week i read an article published by New Zealand and Australian scientists on new research that proves that global warming is a myth. There is far too much hype and not enough hard evidence being bandied about by people with good intentions. Has Keisha read a balanced and complete set of recent research on global warming, i.e. can she talk knowledgeably about both sides of the argument? I suspect not. I agree with Mr Key, leave policy to those people who have graduate degrees and specialise in this area. Not some young actor who believes everything she's told and doesn't bother to be completely informed.

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Wow Playing the Ostridge Card Isn’t Going to make the Problem Go Away , It Will All End in Tears Only When Man Has Blamed the Destruction of this Planet On Everything From Cow Farts to Natural Weather patterns for Climate Change , Has Man Become the New Dinosaur ?

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By balanced I take it that Marcus means a view that will tip the balance in favour of his one sided views. Has he been to the Artic or Antartic, or any of the other places where global warming has had a massive impact, I would guess not! All he needs to do is to look around at what is happening in the world. As for a young actress, look at the serious scientific research which clearly shows the impact of global warming on the Ozone layer, just for starters. Pull your head out Marcus and wake up! If we don't do something soon we are going to be in real trouble.

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Labour are so desperate to criticise National / Key anyway they can, they have one of their small-time minions make a public statement like this - as it's far too petty for Goof / Little to say anything.

What it silently screams to the majority of thinking New Zealanders is that Labour are just so past their used by date, with nothing constructive to contribute to NZ.

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Chauvel wants to remember before he has a crack at Michael Jones that Labour have had a few fairly high profile sportsmen and personalities pushing their barrow in the past.

Michael Campbell and Sir Edmund Hillary being two who spring to mind.

Keisha Castle Hughes should indeed stick to acting - she may know a bit about that.

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John Key is quite right about this. Most actors are not especially bright though they may have high EQs. Whenever one of these dimwits pontificates about hugging dolphins or climate change I always think of the luvvies portrayed in Team America - World Police.

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When "celebrities" start promoting causes, and commenting on complicated scientific and political issues, it's like shoe-shine boys giving stockmarket tips.
You just know that the uninformed have been seduced by the hyperbole.

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Hey Keer,

i think you got the analogy wrong.
The famous example of the shoe-shine boy giving stockmarket advise was a wake-up call. Meaning that if even the shoe shine boy could see it was all going to fall apart those who are trying to deny the imminent disaster have really become blinded by greed.
In this case, if the, as you call them, 'uninformed' celebrities have taken up a cause many are trying to deny then chances are we're closer to collapse than we think!

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Yes Brian - the entire world is doomed because we've been burning coal for the last 250 years ... I'd say the Labour Party is doomed for about that long too if this is all they can contribute

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ANOTHER LITTLE TEENAGER MISLAID BY THE BIGGEST MISLAYERS OF ALL TIME greenpeace AND OF COURSE THEIR PARTNERS IN SPIN THE inept inane labour party WHO SPENT THE NATIONS HOUSEKEEPING IN 9YEARS OF FINANCIAL TREASON.

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Ditto to Ripped Off. And where is PHILLIS GOOF?? IS he hiding out with Chris Carter still trying to formulate a credible(ha ha) response to the exposure over his exorbitant,completely unpatriotic travel claims???? And Charlie Chauvel just likes to get in the news-Labour's spokesman for anything unimportant???? Perhaps he should go and help Chris(!!!!!) and they could send poor old Phillis back to Annie King! What a useless lot.Any discerning reader can learn that global warming is a con. But we do have global change-as the planet has always had and that will go on regardless of what we do. Why do we have buried and drowned cities.?? GLOBAL CHANGE. Why was Australia once a luxuriant green continent that became largely a baked desert? GLOBAL CHANGE. Caused by mans' emissions and pollution? HARDLY!!

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As I am sure Keisha has used a toilet on more than one occasion, I look forward to her announcements on how to best plumb a new house. And after a doctors visit, I am sure she will know best how to perform open heart surgery. When I want climate opinion, I'll ask a climatologist, not a carpenter, or a film actor.

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YES - SHUT UP KEISHA...shut up solo mothers...shut up teachers...shut up anti obesity campaigners...stop questioning us. Whaddya think this is? A democracy? I think I'm gonna put my head back in the sand. It's quieter there

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