Thursday, 12 February 2009

Keynesia is here!

We’ve been struggling to find a replacement for the word “Helengrad” now that regime change is here.  “Helengrad” captured the mood of a decade and the nature of Helen’s regime perfectly, and the search has been on all summer for a replacement. What do we call Wellington now that Key is there?

Key-ev doesn’t cut it.  Ta-John-Key-Stan? Too much of a mouthful. John-obyl? Too much explaining to do.

So, fortunately for our vocabulary, if not for our wallets, yesterday’s spend-up announcement jogged Liberty Scott’s creative faculty into action, and out popped the obvious replacement: Keynesia – named after the patron saint of bureaucrats and Bill English.

I can see it now on sign boards all around Wellington:

Welcome to Keynesia! 

And I'm sure, like you, I look forward to the economic “stimulus” created by the erection of all those new signs.


  1. I liked Key-ev better, added to that the fact that every time I see 'Keynesian economics' I mentally pronounce it to rhyme with Polynesian. Any sort of widespread usage of 'Keynesia' will just exacerbate this state of affairs...


  2. Why not Keyremlin? Keynesia sounds like a country, not a city.

  3. Above comment is mine, pressed anonymous by mistake - Terry

  4. Keyremlin would certainly hit home the message that there has been no fundamental change at the centre of power in this country - it's the same old same old just with a new face - i.e. tag-team style politics. This is the bigger picture surely?

  5. What about Kiev?

    Kiev is an important industrial, scientific, educational and cultural centre of Eastern Europe. It is home to many high-tech industries, higher education institutions and world-famous historical landmarks. The city has an extensive infrastructure and highly developed system of public transport, including the Kiev Metro. (Copied from wiki).

  6. I have visited Kiev - when you are in the city centre it is at least as westernised as Auckland and is not synomymous with an historical centre of political power such as Stalingrad (from which "Helengrad" was derived) or the Kremlin (from which our own "Keyremlin" could be derived). Until recently Kiev was controlled from the Kremlin (and in some respects still is...).

    IMO 'Keynesia', whilst smart, divorces the pun from a well known location that is synonymous with political power and I think is too abstract/intellectual for the general public (the vast majority would not have heard of John Maynard Keynes, and even less would be smart enough to make the connection between John Key, Keynes and Keynesia), so the mainstream media is unlikely to ever adopt it as they did the well-coined 'Helengrad', which is much simpler. Adoption by the mainstream media is surely the ultimate goal of coining such a term.

    'The Keyremlin' on the other hand might catch on as National gets up to its old tricks and inevitably starts to ramp up the scale of the state's intervention...