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Brian Edwards on Shearer

Written By: - Date published: 10:15 am, January 30th, 2013 - 91 comments
Categories: david shearer, labour - Tags: , ,

The macho posturing we’ve seen from David Shearer since conference never quite gelled with the Shearer I knew. I’d always thought of him as a nice guy out of his depth, so the public defaming of David Cunliffe and the ‘I’m in charge’ theatrics always jarred.

Brian Edwards argues the confusion in the Shearer brand comes from the fact he’s trying to be someone he actually isn’t. He’s basically a nice guy being (poorly) advised to act tough and stamp his authority, but because it’s not who he is it doesn’t work. Good piece. Well worth a read:

Shearer’s media image remains a problem. The blame for that must lie in part with bad advice.

Faced with criticism of his seemingly ineffectual leadership Shearer was advised to talk and act tough. He clearly took that advice. His essential message to the November conference was: I’m running the show, I make the decisions, I’m in charge. That was the talking tough component. His subsequent interviews were notable for the number of times he said ‘I, me, my’, a self-conscious attempt to reassert his personal dominance of the party.

Acting tough, in the theatrical sense of the term, came in the form of the public flogging of David Cunliffe. Cunliffe had declined to give an absolute assurance that he would support Shearer in the February confidence vote. He was not only entitled to do so, but right to do so. Shearer’s demand – by no means, I understand, restricted to Cunliffe – that he not merely reveal his voting intentions for the secret Caucus ballot but guarantee to support the leader in that ballot – was democratically, constitutionally and morally improper.

The show trial of Cunliffe nonetheless proceeded, soon to be followed by the predictable verdict of banishment to the back benches.

At the time, I wrote an open letter to Shearer accusing him of dishonesty and described his bullying treatment of Cunliffe, intended primarily for public consumption, as evidence not of strength in leadership but of weakness.

Nothing since has provided me with any reason to change that opinion. Shearer is still doing most of the talking about himself, still involved in the first-person defence and praise of his own leadership: ‘I, me my…’ And there it was again in his State of the Nation speech: ‘I can tell you that today I’m refreshed. I’m fired up and I’m raring to go.

The somewhat curious thing is that the lines, delivered with almost evangelical fervour, weren’t spontaneous; they were scripted, there word for word in his speech notes. But they cannot disguise the fact that Shearer should not have to ‘tell’ his audience that he’s fired up and raring to go, that it should have been obvious not just on this occasion, but since the day he was elected leader. It hasn’t.

Nonetheless, as it was intended to, the line made it onto both the TVNZ and TV3 news bulletins along with this little piece of stand-up: ‘Two days ago, John Key had an epiphany: We have a youth unemployment problem – we need apprentices. Good on him. I thank the focus group that brought that to his attention.’

Actually it’s a pretty good line. But have another look at Patrick Gower’s TV3 News report on the speech. After both the ‘fired up’ and the ‘focus group’ lines Shearer gives this slightly self-conscious, questioning smile, which seems to say, ‘Did you like that? That was a good one, wasn’t it?’

The simple fact is that Shearer isn’t comfortable in the ’talk and act tough’ role. The best demonstration of this was in his response to the media scrum after Cunliffe had been dismembered in Caucus. He was a stumbling, bumbling, incoherent wreck. I suspect he was deeply upset by the lynch-mob mentality and the savagery that had dominated the previous hour. He eventually walked off, refusing to answer any more journalists’ questions.

Shearer is a reasonable man, a conciliator by nature. He has to stop trying so hard to be something he isn’t. He can’t carry it off and we will see through it. He is a poor actor.

This week John Key gave him a lesson in strength. He sacked two under-performing ministers, in all probability ending their parliamentary careers. Yet he’s taken little or no flack for what seems like a pretty brutal thing to do. Maybe that’s because he didn’t act the strong leader, didn’t say much about it at all, was matter-of-fact about a necessary decision. Maybe that’s the lesson.

91 comments on “Brian Edwards on Shearer”

  1. Enough is Enough 1

    I agree Zet, a very good piece by Edwards.

    Pre conference we had Mumblefuck not knowing what he stood for and giving silly soundbites like the bludger on the roof.

    Someone has given him training and he is now staying on message and not straying too far. But the message is I am Mr Tough Guy and I will smash all opposition within the ranks. The message and delivery has changed but it is still very hard to work out what the hell Mumblefuck stands for!

    Contrast with Russel Norman. Enough said.

    I really worry how he will go in debates when there is no teleprompt for him to read the speech written by someone else..

  2. Rhinoviper 2

    It’s good, but it smacks a little of “If only the Tsar knew…”

    Shearer’s not just getting bad advice, he’s choosing to take it.

    Also, I see that down in the comments Edwards gets snippy about anonymous commenters – to paraphrase: “If you’re worried about someone losing their job because something gets attributed to them… well, the bosses should have thicker skins.” Yes, they should – but they don’t and he’s still not getting it.

  3. Bill 3

    Y’know, this ‘but he’s really just a nice guy’ stuff is tiresome. There are probably numerous examples of quite monstrous political or otherwise public figures who were or are ‘quite nice guys’ in private situations.

    David Shearer has no discernable political position to stake out. He’s insincere. He’s wooden. He’s really good at bringing on involuntary cringes. And at the end of the day, for me, rates a big fat zero on the trustworthy stakes.

    Just last night I watched the Sainsbury ‘three David’s’ leadership interview through ‘TV 1 on demand’. And for anyone who has forgotten what was said and how each of the three David’s responded to questioning, then really – go back and watch that 15 minutes worth of TV again.

    http://tvnz.co.nz/election-2011/shearer-wins-battle-three-davids-poll-4583409

    • I was amazed that Shearer won the text in poll. I imagine a number of tories multi texted for Shearer that night!

    • just saying 3.2

      Thanks for that Bill.

      It finished just at the wrong moment as Shearer was about to refuse to acknowledge any personal faults or failings. Some reporters have remembered because he’s been asked again with the same response.

      I think the word is “personable”.

      I’m sure to some my views on him are extreme to some because I don’t like him at all. I certainly don’t see him as being “a nice guy”. From my point of view, I can’t see why it isn’t obvious to everyone that the emperor is stark bollock naked.

      • Colonial Weka 3.2.1

        I thought the ‘what are your faults?’ question was very telling. Sure Cunliffe had more time to prepare an answer, but it’s job interviewing 101 to be able to answer that question well. The other 2 David’s failed miserably, both because they had crap interview technique, but also because they obviously haven’t thought about it enough to be able to answer well. How can you lead a government if you don’t know what your weaknesses are? How can you make up for your weaknesses if you don’t know what they are?

        • mickysavage 3.2.1.1

          I probably should not get on my soapbox but the end of the clip was chilling. The first email read was clearly anti Cunliffe and you wonder why it was chosen. The second one was pro Shearer. I am sure that other choices of emails could have been made.

          You also have to wonder at who texted in support of Shearer at 75c a pop and what motivated them. I doubt there were many young South Aucklanders texting away for what for them was a really important decision.

          I can also clearly recall a wave of “independent commentators” at the time coming out in support of Shearer. I made lists of them and they included David Farrar (National), Cameron Slater (National), Matthew Hooton (National), John Tamihere (National voting), Michelle Boag (National), Deborah Coddington (Act), Chris Trotter (still Alliance), and other names who will be recognisable including Nick C, Mr Magoo and Pete George.

          Trotter apart they all obviously had the best interests of the Labour Party and the desire to create a more egalitarian New Zealand as their foremost consideration.

          /Sarc

          • King Kong 3.2.1.1.1

            Finally you have worked it out. The right rigged your leadership selection and it was easy.

            You forgot the other people that supported Shearer;

            Grant Robertson, David Parker,Jacinda Ardern,Maryan Street,Clayton Cosgrove,Phil Twyford, Ruth Dyson,Trevor Mallard, Kris Faafoi, Iain Lees-Galloway, Damien O’Connor,
            Darien Fenton, Clare Curran, Phil Goff, Chris Hipkins, Annette King, David Clark, Andrew Little, Megan Woods

            Obviously all evil agents of the right.

            • mickysavage 3.2.1.1.1.1

              I knew it at the time Kong but thanks for the reinforcement.

            • felixviper 3.2.1.1.1.2

              Can you think of another example of a party leadership contest where one candidate was overwhelmingly and publicly endorsed by the hierarchy/members/activists/employees/operatives of the opposing party?

              • fatty

                bill english

              • Te Reo Putake

                Ignore the righties, felix, they don’t understand the question. The correct answer is, of course, United Future … every time an election brings a change of Government and Peter Dulle needs his ministerial warrant renewed he seems to magically and retrospectively endorse the new PM.

              • King Kong

                To be fair, I can’t remember a leadership selection for either party that was quite so public and out in the open and which allowed people to pick a dog and tell others why.

                There was televised debate, public meetings, the whole nine yards.

                Alot of the time this stuff is done and dusted before it becomes public debate.

    • Dr Terry 3.3

      Bill – extremely well spoken, thank you. More than time New Zealanders got over the absurd and meaningless “just a nice guy” shit – we do not need these gormless asses in parliament. I have never understood why it is that anyone should consider Shearer a nice guy anyway, please someone explain to me his great qualities of character (other than what he has told us about himself!)

  4. ad 4

    He was always going to need all the help his caucus could give him. So far I don’t yet see them appearing united and pushing strong policy hits out there, thereby compensating Shearer for his deficiencies.

    And the way to do that is not yet another reshuffle. It’s by re-uniting the Labour Party – caucus, members and affiliates – together. IMHO that requires a full vote. It needs the whole of Labour to supprot the leader and defeat the Government. A full vote, for full unity, and full compensatory support for him.

    • AmaKiwi 4.1

      @ ad, what a beautiful dream. A full election like we used to have in the USSR.

      Team ABC generated irrational hatred of their opponent so they can never backtrack and compromise.

      @ ad, I have a dream, too. I will be working to help the Greens take 5 to 10 seats off Team Mumblefuck at the next election.

      • bad12 4.1.1

        Nah, i am a realist, i want the Green Party to add 2-3 seats in 2014 and i want the votes FOR those seats to come from the ranks of the ‘registered but did not vote bloc’,

        That’s how i see ‘the left’ winning in 2014…

  5. KhandallaViper 5

    I don’t feel comfortable with the use of pejorative terms in reference to Shearer.
    Unnecessary.

    There many many solid words to describe the screw up that was the past 14 months.
    This mess was anticipate last year by many on these pages.

    Putting a novice unforged backbencher in the leadership role was an act of phenomenal stupidity.

    The mess has to be fixed immediately.

    • AmaKiwi 5.1

      For 3 years Goff was happy with Cunliffe as his Finance Spokesperson. If he wasn’t, he could have sacked him at any time. When Goff loses the election he unleashes a hate campaign on the most qualified potential leader. That was the stupid decision.

      Tall poppy.

    • Tiger Mountain 5.2

      On one level “Mumblefuck” is a fine if derogatory description.

      Parker would have lost to Cunliffe so “someone” (use your imagination) came up with the bright idea of David Shearer, who had been touch and go to even get selected as an electorate MP. Lamingtons all-round?

      Labour members and commenters here seem to have got all revved up over the long overdue party democracy review so there is some level of transference to David Shearer. Labour was a positive social democratic party that went neo lib and still substantially is, despite what the many sincere members work for.

      Will a leadership replacement change that?

      • Bill 5.2.1

        Will a leadership replacement change that?

        More or less that same question was put in that Sainsbury interview. As Cunliffe pointed out, the leadership matters because the leader sets the tone and brings an entire team to bear on any direction set by that tone.

        And again from that interview – when they were each asked, David Shearer couldn’t even state that he was left wing. From my ‘shot to pieces’ short term memory, Parker hedged his bets and only David Cunliffe was unequivocal in stating his position as being a social democrat of the center left within the Labour caucus.

        Does ‘center left within the Labour caucus’ constitute a break from neo-liberalism? Well obviously that depends on how left the left of the caucus is. But when compared to the two others who appeared to think that ‘left’ was a dirty word that shouldn’t be mentioned in polite company….

        • Tiger Mountain 5.2.1.1

          Well exactly Bill, not to get too dramatic but I met David Cunliffe unexpectedly in person prior to xmas at a partners function. We were introduced and had a chat during which I said “I am a bit to the left of Labour… etc” and he replied “I am too it seems at the moment…” with a grin.

    • Dr Terry 5.3

      KH – I see little that is pejorative. It was stupidity to put him up for leadership, and it was through stupidity that he accepted that position.

  6. debatewatcher viper 6

    The focus group line is funny when you first hear it, except when you consider that Labour’s housing policy was probably derived in the same way.

  7. delia 7

    Sorry, Brian, I liked David’s speech. After listening to a self important guy crack stupid jokes about cat bells and such nonsense, David’s speech that followed at least talked about working New Zealanders. John Key would ask who are they.

    • Enough is Enough 7.1

      Yes, but we all know Key is a fuckwit so we shouldn’t be comparing him to that Neo Liberal right wing lunatic.

      But how does his speech, his vison, his ideas, initiatives and leadership compare to Russell Norman. A true left wing leader who this country so desperatley needs. If we are stuck with Mumblefuck as a PM, how long will it be until we have a true left wing Prime Minister.

      • King Kong 7.1.1

        Vote for Norman then. If he is as shit hot as you reckon then so will alot of other people.

        If you have an alternative then why do you care about Shearer, unless you are here simply wailing on him for sport.

        • fatty 7.1.1.1

          If you have an alternative then why do you care about Shearer, unless you are here simply wailing on him for sport.

          Jeeze ding dong…that’s a stupid statement even by your moronic standard.
          Yes, there are many Green voters here…but a vote for Green in 2014 means that all Green voters will be hoping that the leader of Labour will be the PM.
          Its called MMP…you know those big people that do up your shoelaces? -ask one of them about MMP

          • bad12 7.1.1.1.1

            Buckle up His straight-jacket you mean…

          • King Kong 7.1.1.1.2

            Hang on a tick. If the Greens are so fucking fantastic why can they not be the main party that makes up a Government. Your argument sort of acknowledges that the Greens are a bit shit so you have to hijack Labours train.

            • mike 7.1.1.1.2.1

              “Your argument sort of acknowledges that the Greens are a bit shit so you have to hijack Labours train.”

              It acknowledges the political reality that for the Greens to get the most votes of any party in 2014 there would have to be some unprecedented, massive, and rapid change to long entrench voting patterns. It’s just not very likely.

              If someone here posted, “Hey us Green supporters don’t even need to worry about who the Labour Party leader is if we can get more votes than any other party,” you’d be be laughing your pants off at them.

              But none of this is news to you is it ding dong. Why do you do it? Why tr0ll with such pointless, boring, distracting arguments? I know many teenagers go through a “it’s fun to draw outraged responses on the net” phase, but you’ve been doing this for some time. What’s your excuse?

              • King Kong

                Fair enough. But sneaking around on online forums putting your two cents in on Labours leadership as if you care about the Labour party when it is really the Green agenda you are serving is very dirty pool.

                If this kind of thing keeps happening there is going to a massive punch up before the next election that will be incredibly destabilizing for the left. Yay.

                • mike

                  “Fair enough. But sneaking around on online forums putting your two cents in on Labours leadership as if you care about the Labour party when it is really the Green agenda you are serving is very dirty pool.”

                  Citation please.

                  I guess you mean a bit like Matthew Hooten coming here and giving hand-claps to Shearer? Wait, I don’t think he’s a Green Party voter…

                  “If this kind of thing keeps happening there is going to a massive punch up before the next election that will be incredibly destabilizing for the left.”

                  I’ll admit there’s interesting and challenging times ahead for the left side of the house. Who knows how it will pan out. At least they are helped by the fact that it’s only a matter of time before people realize that John Key is just a tape recording – “brighter future… jobs focus… there is no crisis… it’s Labour’s fault…” Sweet Jesus.

                  “Yay.”

                  Yeah NZ politics. Yippee.

            • fatty 7.1.1.1.2.2

              Your argument sort of acknowledges that the Greens are a bit shit so you have to hijack Labours train.

              No and yes.
              No, the Greens are not “a bit shit”, but yes, the Greens have to “hijack Labours train”.

              The reason the Greens have to hijack Labour’s train is because people still see politics as red vs blue. Way too many people don’t understand MMP.
              Ding dong, you have responded to a statement with a question, but your question is already answered by the statement you are questioning.

              Don’t worry, as stupid as that makes you sound, its quite a common occurrence. Reminds me of the people who complain that driving somewhere takes too long because of the traffic…they fail to realise that when they drive, they are the traffic.

              • BM

                So Green party supporters will keep undermining Shearer because he’s not the guy the greens want.

                Explains a lot.

                • fatty

                  yeah, it explains MMP.
                  What is fuckin wrong with you morons.

                  • BM

                    I thought MMP was about similar parties working together not undermining each other to get a bigger slice of the pie.

                    • fatty

                      I thought MMP was about similar parties working together

                      Yes, it is. That is why left voters are questioning Shearers ‘direction’. They need to be similar to work together.

                      not undermining each other to get a bigger slice of the pie.

                      The critique of Labour from Greens supporters is not done to get a bigger slice, it is done in the hope that Labour will come to their senses and move Left…then together Labour and the Greens can share a bigger piece of the pie.

                      Same thing happened when ACT were criticising National’s third way policies from 2008-2011. ACT didn’t want a ‘bigger slice of the pie’…it wanted National to move to the Right so that the process of shifting resources from the needy to the greedy could begin.

                    • BM

                      Yeah and look what happen to act.

                    • fatty

                      can you expand on that…it appears as though you are predicting the Greens will dissolve into nothing? Is that what you really think?

                    • BM

                      Just pointing out it’s a dangerous game the greens are playing.
                      The dog may decide to chew on its tail.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Lol BM.

                      How many mates have the National party got? (none)
                      What does their slowly shrinking popularity rely on? (Key)

                      Good strategy.

                    • felixviper

                      “Yeah and look what happen to act”

                      Err, they had so little support that they only existed in parliament at all by National’s request? And the only mechanism for keeping them there was the single seat of Epsom? And when the member to whom National gifted that seat got caught with his snout in the trough and fucked it all up National replaced him with the corpse of John Banks whose ghost haunts them to this day?

                      Yeah, that’s totally relevant to the Greens’ situation, genius.

                    • Colonial Weka

                      The Greens are no longer the tail, more like the whole hind quarters. The media already treat them like the head. What does that leave Labour?

                      btw, the GP policy at the last election was to go for every party vote they could get. I don’t imagine it will be different next time, despite my hope that the left uses accommodations again.

                      However the Green supporters on ts generally are critical of (a) Shearer, and (b) the ABC’s focus on neoliberalism, rather than Labour itself. Personally, when Shearer gets replaced with someone who can lead, and when Labour starts to move back to the left, I’ll be less critical of them and talk more about co-operative politics.

        • Colonial Weka 7.1.1.2

          “Vote for Norman then”

          You can’t vote for Norman, unless you are part of the GP that chooses the leadership or party list. Do keep up.

  8. crying man 8

    I hope mps just give me the chance to have my say on the substance of the speech. When that’s done I’ll throw my support behind whoever leads labour into the next election.

  9. Yes I have faith that there are 13 MPs who think its important after all this disunity and infighting to give us a vote. Its the only way for Labour to get itself quickly into shape to win in 2014.

    I want to see the talent in the team and a fulsome Leadership campaign would demonstrate what we’ve got. Such campaigns are healthy for organisations. Backroom deals done by a few are not.

    Come on MPs – do the right thing on 4 February and let us unite to fight in 2014.

  10. Scintilla 10

    The point is that Key was always going to go for the throat of any Labour leader. Ergo, the Labour leader HAS to be a seasoned, articulate, quick-draw debater, with all the relevant data to hand. Someone who can give as good as they get – better, in fact. It makes not one jot of difference whether posters on the Standard or anywhere else point out perceived shortcomings in Shearer. Key can see it all by himself and has no qualms in dealing to Shearer – despite the fact that Key himself is a lispy stumbler! He’s made it work for him by playing at being just an ordinary kiwi bloke:

    He always looks confident and relaxed even when he’s being a tit.

  11. BeeDee 11

    Shearer is a new kind of leader and one who is needed in these dire times. We have the threat of extreme changes to our habitat evident even to the loudest sceptics and we have an economic crash that will roll on and on. We need a compassionate and knowledgeable leader like Shearer who can see that it’s not possible to continue with growth and business as usual.
    And his little smile after his staking a position as the future Prime Minister? Can’t you recognise the sense of irony he was conveying!

    • Daveo 11.1

      “Shearer is a new kind of leader and one who is needed in these dire times”

      Dire times indeed.

    • Elizabeth Bourchier Real Labour 11.2

      BeeDee, oh pleeeeeeease
      Shearer has NOT demonstrated being “knowledgeable” at any time.
      Shearer “compassionate”? Frankly there are toooooo many questions about his back-story. His inability to unite the Causic and lead a willing Party suggests many personal traits are deficient .

  12. fatty 12

    I agree with Brian Edwards that Shearer is straining to present himself as a tough leader…but I don’t think Brian’s analysis went deep enough.
    I’d say there have been 3 key moments that have led to Labour being stuck with a leader who has failed time and time again.
    The first moment was when he was chosen as the Labour leader, the second was his ‘tour’ of NZ where he strummed his way around the country with his guitar, the third moment was the Labour conference.
    All 3 of these moments have led us to Shearers current problem, all were major mistakes, all are irreversible and the reason why Shearer will struggle in 2014.

    1 – Shearer chosen as leader:

    I think its fair to view Shearer as a victim, as much as he is a perpetrator, of a monumental political fuck up. Shearer’s problems first began when people started to back him as a leader to keep out Cunliffe. Shearer is a puppet and I’m not sure if he even wanted to be leader…I’m sure he didn’t want to be leader so soon. Shearer was chosen to protect the career of *insert neolib rogernomic dinosaur here*. However, beyond protecting paychecks, there was an underlying assumption held by those in the Labour Party – ‘Doesn’t matter who is leader, NZ will wake up and they will hate Key by 2014′ …it was this assumption that made Shearer an option as leader. It is becoming clearer by the day that this assumption was, and is wrong.
    Although I see Shearer as a victim, I also balance that by what Rhinoviper stated above Shearer’s not just getting bad advice, he’s choosing to take it. So, although Shearer is a victim, he is also leader and possesses the opportunity and power to override his puppet masters.

    2 – Shearer’s guitar strumming tour:

    This is the moment we should look at as being when Shearer lost any chance of becoming PM. You only get one opportunity to make a first impression and Shearer fucked up. Team Shearer had two options when he became leader…either present Shearer as a nice guy, or as a leader. They chose the nice guy. The reason for this was, again, was that they considered Key’s popularity as temporary, that NZ would see through him very soon, and that the NZ public would want another nice guy to take over.
    The reason they misread the needs of voters was because Team Shearer ignored our past:
    post-depression, NZ needed a tough Labour leader with a coherent persuasive narrative – Savage 1935;
    post-1980s/1990s, NZ needed a tough Labour leader with a coherent persuasive narrative – Clark 1999;
    post-GFC, NZ needed a tough Labour leader with a coherent persuasive narrative – we got Shearer strumming his guitar and faffing about as a nice guy. That was a major blunder.
    We wanted a leader who would show signs of a political vision, but instead Team Shearer thought they could replicate Key’s depoliticisation and the tide would turn. Shearer ‘did well’ to depoliticise himself as a leader, but it is this image that he is now desperately trying to reverse. The continued rise of the Greens is evidence of Shearer’s image failure.
    Who would have guessed that NZ wanted a tough coherent leader during an economic crash?…anyone with a brain, that’s who.

    3 – The conference and Shearer’s image makeover:

    This is where I have a problem with Brian Edward’s analysis. I don’t see the problem as being that Shearer is not a tough guy, but rather that Shearer is attempting the almost impossible task of reversing his first impression. Shearer should have presented himself as a tough Labour leader with a coherent persuasive narrative when he first became leader, not now. To do so now, Shearer had to sacrifice Cunliffe. On the one hand, hacking Cunliffe has presented Shearer as tough to NZ voters, but it has failed to address his poorly planned first impression. The outcome is that it has muddled his first impression and leaves Shearer looking incoherent and way out of his depth. Is Shearer the nice guy? Or is Shearer the tough leader NZ needs? …your guess is as good as mine.
    Edwards claims Shearer’s nature is not suited to being a tough leader, but I am not convinced by this. A Prime Minister’s nature is irrelevant, what is important is how the public views them. After all, Key’s nature is to deceive and he has very selfish tendencies…but his image is one of a nice guy.

    Shearer’s problems began with the career MPs thinking that it would be their turn in 2014. His guitar strumming, nice guy image left him in a lose-lose situation. At least he has realised his initial image was a mistake and he is trying to reverse it, unfortunately he does not possess the skills to reverse his image. He will do well to rebrand himself to the NZ public without being viewed as a bumbling opportunist – Key avoids that by having a coherent image since he began.

    • Olwyn 12.1

      So you think he should have followed the “new teacher” trick of putting his foot down hard at the outset, then softening, thus giving the impression of firmness modified by depth and dimension.

      I think that whatever toughness was involved in knee-capping Cunliffe was not of the kind that you associate with ” a tough leader with a cohesive, persuasive narrative,” especially with Cunliffe being the only one among them who is willing and able to produce such a narrative. Instead it came across as spiteful, panicked and despotic. The people who rejoiced in this new toughness were those on Mickey Savage’s list, plus a few more of like mind, and the poll that bumped up a couple of points as a result was a Herald poll.

      • fatty 12.1.1

        So you think he should have followed the “new teacher” trick of putting his foot down hard at the outset, then softening, thus giving the impression of firmness modified by depth and dimension.

        Not really.
        You have used the terms ‘tough’ and ‘firm’ …I should have done this, because I think there is a difference between the two. Firm is desirable and that is the way Shearer should have been projected from the outset. Tough can be a problematic image to present because it can be controlling and we live in a world today where we all want agency (or at least believe we have agency, Clark discovered that the hard way).

        I think because Shearer never presented himself as firm, coherent and with a vision, he has now reacted by presenting himself as tough. This is done in the hope that he can present a coherent narrative.
        So I think he should have presented a coherent narrative from the beginning, which required him to be firm (or tough to a degree). Ironically, for Shearer to present himself as firm, coherent and with a vision, Shearer needed to dispose of the old rogernomic crew from the begining…but that meant using his power to dispose of people who supply his power.

        I think that whatever toughness was involved in knee-capping Cunliffe was not of the kind that you associate with ” a tough leader with a cohesive, persuasive narrative,”

        Yes, Shearer is stuck between a rock and a hard place. Shearer is trying to balance reversing his original image, and the best way to do this is cut out old useless MPs, but he’d be biting the hands that feed him. So as a result, Cunliffe was crucified. Labour is sick on so many levels right now. I ain’t a supporter of Shearer, he fucks up on a weekly basis…I just think he has been, and continues to be used. In a way I feel sorry for him

  13. gobsmacked 13

    Shearer’s job today was to read out some prepared questions in Parliament. He struggled to reach the end of a sentence.

    Nothing has changed. The Nacts are giving this guy all the ammo he could ask for, and he can’t even load the gun, never mind hit the target.

    • Enough is Enough 13.1

      Dead right!!! Nothing has changed. He has to fucking go.

      All you pointy heads in the Labour Research Unit reading this. Let your leaders know. He can not win the next election and he has to go. And if he does happen to win he will not bring the change this country needs.

      February is two days away. Let the beltway know what democracy sounds like. Call your local Labour MP now.

      • gobsmacked 13.1.1

        By the end of Question Time, the government was floundering. Whenever the opposition is led (sic) by somebody else, Key’s emptiness is exposed. The Greens can do it. Other Labour MPs can do it. Winston can do it. Anyone can do it. Except the guy whose job it is to do it.

        So there’s one glaring problem. We can spend the next two years pretending it isn’t there, week after week after frustrating week … or we can solve it.

        As dilemmas go, this is about as tough as “Should I insert the fork into my spaghetti or my eyeballs?”. (No clues, you have to work the answer out for yourselves).

  14. BillODrees 14

    Bryce Edwards has his weekly resume of media things political (MSM & BLOG) in the NBR.

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/nz-politics-daily-boring-boring-boring-ck-135074

    Under the heading of Boring, Boring, Boring he castigates both Shearer and Key for their State of teh Nation speeches.

    The quote below from Chris Trotter aligns with Fatty’s points above in 12.

    “The Labour Leader’s inner circle of advisors is distinguished neither by intellectual creativity nor operational dynamism.
    Far from reaching-out to activists and supporters outside the party’s structures, most of the Shearer Camp’s energies appear to be devoted to finding new ways of insulting and excluding them from policy-making”.

    • Elizabeth Bourchier Real Labour 14.1

      Bill
      If there is any truth in that comment of Trotter, it is a bad indictment on both Shearer and his backers.
      It does explain many things.
      Shearer was a virgin to party and parliament ripe for grooming.
      People got into his office who needed a strong direction but met a vaccume instead.
      Result: dysfunction.
      Solution: new leadership vote

    • Rogue Trooper 14.2

      interesting Bod

  15. Polish Pride 15

    I’m all for continuing the status quo for a while – The worse things get for peoplethe more likely a change to the entire system will become….

    • Enough is Enough 15.1

      I fall into your camp a little bit.

      A Shearer led Labour/Green government will not deliver any real substantial change. They will tinker and talk about real change but the same system wwill continue.

      I would rather see Shearer lose in 2014 so that he is dumped and restored with a real reformer who will come back in 2017 and defeat neo liberalism for ever.

      • Te Reo Putake 15.1.1

        What a twit you are, EIE. So you’d damn NZ to another 3 years of the Tories just to see a spurious sectarian point made, eh? No empathy, no understanding, no political thinking at all. Are you King Kong in disguise?

        • Enough is Enough 15.1.1.1

          what will change under Shearer led govenment?

          I see no evidence that any meaningful reform will take place with him at the helm.

          My preference is for him to be gone tomorrow and a true Labour party representing the workers of this country wins next year election.

          If he wins though the current system will continue throughout the next Labour Government and throughout the next National Government. It that scenario it would be 15 years before we see a government for the workers of this country in charge.

          Three more years of the Staus Quo with a left wing light at the end of that tunnel sure beats decades of this bullshit continuing which it will if Shearer ( the man who ave the bludger on the roof speech) wins the next election.

        • geoff 15.1.1.2

          So you’d damn NZ to another 9 years of muddling through? People’s perspective on this will reflect their personal circumstances. If you’re already at the bottom of the heap and making do with tories in power then you’ve little left to lose. what you want is a new system instead of tweaking the existing corrupt one. Increasingly people are finding themselves in this position and so for them, the half-arsed Blairite politics of Shearer have no appeal.

      • KhandallaViper 15.1.2

        The 1,000 a week that has to emigrate cannot wait that long.
        The 250,000 children that go to bed hungry cannot wait that long.

        The Greens, who do not have Labour values, will not wait that long to pick up many of our frustrated activists and disappointed supporters.

        The Nats backers, monopoly asset lovers, will not be waiting.

        We waited, sitting on our hands, booting our tongues, while we watched Phil headed to the 2011 loss. We knew it was happening. We did not act.

        We cannot not act again.

        Now is the time to eyeball YOUR MP and senior party officers.
        The MPs cannot vote confidence in the current leadership set-up. To do so is a lie.

        All we need is 13 MPs to with-hold their confidence, forcing Shearer to go into Q&A sessions with the members around the country.
        If you want change, call your MP.

  16. hush minx 16

    Like many of the commentators here I really hope that mps listen to members and activists and vote to let us have our say (yes, it’s enough to make me renew my membership!). But we should also prepare ourselves, should such a wondrous event occur, for TS commentors, authors, other opinion leaders and those mps who supported the vote to be attacked and vilified by the incumbents. We might want it to happen, but it won’t be pretty to watch!

  17. gobsmacked 17

    Shearer tries to talk housing on 3 News tonight: he’s floundering, as usual.

    There is no way Labour can survive two more years of this. Please make it stop.

  18. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 18

    It would be good to know that a leader has beliefs as to suitable policies and commitment to them, from the heart and mind, not from advisors. While clear communication that reaches the voters, and perception of them and the politician enunciating them is helped by advice, it doesn’t meam that we should get a cardboard character or one like the Wizard of Oz, making announcements followed by a cloud of smoke. Advisors who are informed on the subject are necessary and watching Sir Humphrey and PM Jim is amusing but leaves one uneasy.

  19. xtasy 19

    NOT FROM A CUNLIFFE FAN: Tonight I watched and heard on live Parliament TV the speech of David Cunliffe, now merely “MP” for New Lynn, on the Prime Minister’s Statement.

    Well, I was surprised, and that was pleasantly. Now why is he sent to the backbenches, while Labour have a leader that struggles to pull his foot out of his mouth, whenever he faces the media?

    Maybe Cunliffe is not the right leader as such, but he must be part of the team, at the front bench.

    Shearer has shot himself in the foot with condemning him for just refraining from giving full open allegiance to Shearer. Do we live in a dictatorship???

    I agree with Edwards, and I wrote so somewhere else. It is time for some stern, sombre thinking in the stubburn head of Shearer and those supporting him.

    Do they want Labour to have a real chance, a real competent team, perhaps a chance to win in 2014???

    At present I only see and hear the opposite.

    The speech from Cunliffe today convinced me, he must be part of the top team, and one day perhaps even LEADER of Labour.

    Otherwise, I will do ALL, to support a NEW LEFT PARTY to be founded and formed.

    • the Al1en 19.1

      “The speech from Cunliffe today convinced me, he must be part of the top team, and one day perhaps even LEADER of Labour.”

      “Otherwise, I will do ALL, to support a NEW LEFT PARTY to be founded and formed.”

      Read between those lines and introduce one to the other.
      Like it? Email D C and tell him. Address on the labour party page.
      Tell him the Al1en said hello.

      “You can’t always get what you want
      But if you try sometimes you just might find
      You just might find
      You get what you need”

    • benghazi 19.2

      Nope just watch the reshuffle. Shearer is going to shuffle in Shane Jones and shuffle out most of the women. Pity Marayan Street sold her soul to the wrong faction. Now let’s see how she likes it with no Mallard mentor.

      And as for promoting Cunliffe back to the front bench, I doubt it. When you do what Shearer did in November manufacturing a coup that never was, and breaching natural justice in the way he did, he won’t be bringing Cunliffe back.

      Guess what – Labour can go screw itself. They do not deserve Cunliffe! Shearer’s moral compass is every bit as twisted as Mallard and King.

    • JK 19.3

      Xtasy – The Allen – or anyone – Do you have a link to the Cunliffe speech in Parliament yesterday please ?

  20. Socialist Paddy 20

    Amen to that.

  21. Jim 21

    The ipredict website is calling a 52% chance of a National Prime Minister after the 2014 election. I think the odds of that happening are somewhat higher. The Labour leader and deputy seem quite unaware of just how unattractive is the proposition they present. We don’t just give those jobs to anyone who wants them.

    https://www.ipredict.co.nz/app.php?do=browse&cat=319

    • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 21.1

      The Labour leader and deputy seem quite unaware of just how unattractive is the proposition they present. We don’t just give those jobs to anyone who wants them.

      No they have to pass the smile and blarney test to a high level.

  22. CrosbyTextor 22

    Thanks ZETETIC, you’re doing a wonderful job.

  23. hush minx 23

    Actually Crosby, I think you should be directing your comments to the Labour leadership….national couldn’t pay you enough for the job that the old guard are doing on Labour.

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    Labour | 24-08
  • Labour’s 21st century transport pledge
    The next Labour-led Government will create a 21st century transport system for New Zealand that promotes the most efficient and sustainable combination of transport options, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Labour will rebalance the Government's transport spending away from...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Housing under National: the facts
    1.       House prices in Auckland Council valuations indicate Auckland house prices have gone up by one-third over the last three years. (Auckland Council) The average Auckland house price has gone up by nearly $225,000 since 2008, up over $75,000 in...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Labour irons out low income tax issue
    The increasing casualisation of work has led to many New Zealand families being disadvantaged through the tax they pay, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. "Many low paid workers are having to work two or three jobs to make ends meet...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Cornered Government comes out swinging
    The National Government is so desperate to keep its dead-in-the-water expert teachers policy alive, it has refused to rule out forcing schools to participate through legislation, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “John Key today attacked the Educational Institute for...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Pacific people continue to go backwards under National
    A report from Victoria University highlights the fact that Pacific people are continuing to go backwards under a National Government, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “The report shows the largest inequality increases were in smoking, obesity, tertiary...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Wellington transport plan needs to keep moving
    The failure of the Transport Agency to properly look at alternatives to the Basin Reserve flyover is not a good reason for further delays to improving transport in Wellington, Labour MPs Grant Robertson and Annette King say. “The Board of...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Labour’s focus on inequality, kids and better job prospects
    Tackling child poverty and removing barriers to people working part time to enhance their prospects of moving into a fulltime job are highlights of Labour’s Social Development policy. Releasing the policy today, spokesperson Sue Moroney said while part-time work was...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Political staff should give answers under oath
    The Inspector General of Security and Intelligence should use her full statutory powers to question witnesses under oath about the leak of SIS information, says Labour MP Phil Goff. “Leakage of confidential information from the SIS for political purposes is...
    Labour | 21-08
  • High dollar, hands-off Govt sends workers to dole queue
    The loss of up to 100 jobs at Croxley stationery in Auckland is devastating news for their families and the local Avondale community, Labour’s Employment, Skills and Training spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The company’s inability to compete in international markets...
    Labour | 21-08
  • National’s flagship education policy dead in the water
    National’s plan to create executive principals and expert teachers is effectively dead in the water with news that 93 percent of primary teachers have no confidence in the scheme, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The fact that teachers are...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Dunedin will be a knowledge and innovation centre under Labour
    Dunedin will become a knowledge and innovation centre under a Labour Government that will back local businesses, support technology initiatives and fund dynamic regional projects, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Nowhere has the National Government’s short-sightedness been more apparently than...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Inquiry into SIS disclosures the right decision
    Labour MP Phil Goff says the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has done the right thing by launching an inquiry into the disclosure of SIS documents about a meeting between himself and the agency’s former director-general. “This inquiry is necessary...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Labour – supporting and valuing carers and the cared for
    Placing real value on our elderly and the people who care for them will be a priority for a Labour Government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. Releasing Labour’s Senior Citizens policy today David Cunliffe promised that a Labour Government would...
    Labour | 20-08
  • By Hoki! It’s Labour’s fisheries policy
    A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Catching a fish from the rocks, beach...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Mighty River – Mighty Profits – Mighty hard to swallow
    Mighty River Power’s profit increase of 84 per cent is simply outrageous, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “Demand for electricity is flat or declining yet the company has made enormous profits. It is the latest power company to celebrate...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Collins’ actions were wrong, not unwise
    John Key’s moral compass remains off-kilter as he cannot bring himself to declare Judith Collins’ actions outright wrong, not simply ‘unwise’, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “Under pressure John Key is finally shifting his stance but his failure to condemn...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Public servants behaving with more integrity than their masters
    The State Services Commission's new report on the integrity of our state services reflects the yawning gap between the behaviour of public servants and that of their political masters, Labour's State Services spokesperson Maryan Street says. “This report, which surveyed...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Phil Twyford Speech to NZCID
    "Labour's plan to build more and build better: how new approaches to housing, transport and urban development will deliver cities that work" Phil Twyford, Labour Party spokesperson on housing, transport, Auckland issues, and cities.  ...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Labour commits to independent Foreign Affairs and Trade
    “Labour is committed to New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs and Trade policy being independent and proactive, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “We are a small but respected country. Our voice and actions count in international affairs. Labour will take a...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Key must sack Collins over abhorrent actions
    The latest revelations that Judith Collins sent the contact details of a public servant to WhaleOil in a desperate attempt to divert media attention from a bad story is abhorrent, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key and Judith Collins...
    Labour | 19-08
  • It’s downhill from here under National
    The forecast drop in exports and predicted halving of growth shows that it’s downhill from here with National, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Growth under this Government peaked in June and halves to two per cent in coming years....
    Labour | 19-08
  • John Key loses moral compass over Collins
    John Key has lost his moral compass over Judith Collins’ involvement with Cameron Slater and lost touch with New Zealanders’ sense of right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Whoever is Prime Minister there are expectations they will not...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Mana Movement General Election 2014 List confirmed
    The MANA List is now confirmed with all the candidates as below (the numbers are the respective Internet MANA rankings). Candidate, Electorate, Internet MANA List Position Hone Harawira, Te Tai Tokerau (1) Annette Sykes, Waiariki (3) John Minto, Mt Roskill (4) Te Hamua Nikora, Ikaroa-Rawhiti...
    Mana | 18-08
  • PREFU likely to confirm dropping exports
    National’s economic management will be put under the spotlight in tomorrow’s PREFU given clear signs the so-called rock star economy has fallen off the stage, with plummeting prices for raw commodity exports, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Under National,...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Record profits while Kiwis face a cold winter
    The record profits by two of New Zealand’s largest electricity companies will be a bitter pill for New Zealand households who are paying record amounts for their power, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “No doubt the Key government will...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time for John Key to answer yes or no questions
    John Key’s train-wreck interview on Morning Report shows he is no longer capable of a simple yes or no answer and has lost touch with what’s right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key has become so media...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Key must clarify who signed out SIS OIA
    Yet again John Key is proving incapable of answering a simple question on an extremely important issue – this time who signed off Cameron Slater’s fast-tracked SIS OIA request on Phil Goff, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “John Key’s claim...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time to invest in our tertiary education system
    A Labour Government will fully review the student support system – including allowances, loans, accommodation support and scholarships – with a view to increasing access and making the system fair, transparent and sustainable, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says....
    Labour | 17-08
  • Labour will facilitate regional Māori economic development agencies
    The next Labour Government will facilitate the creation of regional Māori economic development groups lead by iwi and hapū to work in partnership with business and public agencies as part of its Māori Development policy. “Labour is committed to working towards...
    Labour | 16-08
  • PRIME MINISTER’S DENIAL AT ODDS WITH NATIONAL PARTY STATEMENT
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has today released an email from the General Manager of the National Party that directly contradicts recent statements from the Prime Minister in relation to the 2011 breaches of Labour Party website databases. In his stand-up...
    Labour | 16-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Denis Tegg – When Did We Agree To Our Data Being Shared with ...
    New shocking evidence has emerged from Edward Snowden’s trove of documents about a program called ICREACH under which data collected by the GCSB is shared with 23 US spy agencies. Under new sharing agreements which appear to have commenced immediately after...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Why Internet MANA are the best political friends the Greens could ever get
    Metiria at last nights #GreenRoomNZ: standing on the shoulders and camera cases of giants  NZers, regardless of political spectrum or apathy level, have a wonderful beach cricket egalitarianism about us. If we can objectively conclude a winner, then that person...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Sick of the Sleaze? Protest against National’s dirty politics THIS SATURD...
    Sick of the Sleaze? Protest now dammit! Three weeks before the election, action is being taken across the country voicing a rejection of the National Government’s track record and direction. Rallies are being held in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Sir Edmund Thomas – Address at Nicky Hager public meeting
    I regard it as privilege to chair this public meeting. I have long had the greatest admiration for Nicky Hager’s work, and nothing I have read or heard in the media over the past week or so has caused me...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Labour and New Zealand Superannuation
    The kerfuffle in the wake of Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics has had a detrimental impact on our discussion of economic policies. Signs are that the main beneficiaries of the dirty politics revelations will be Winston Peters and Colin Craig; certainly National suffered...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Mike Hosking and the Leader’s Debat...
    A few weeks ago I blogged that Mike Hosking was a terrible choice as moderator for the TV One Party Leader’s Debate, because he is so embarrassingly biased in favour of John Key. So I watched the show with curiosity,...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Democracy and Cancer: A critical analysis of Dirty Politics
    Twenty years ago, England’s renowned television playwright Denis Potter died of pancreatic cancer.  Readers may recall his two masterpieces ‘Pennies from Heaven’ and ‘The Singing Detective’.  During a final television interview with Melvyn Bragg, Potter declared that he had named...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Cunliffe beats Key in First Leaders debate
    I watched the First Leaders debate at the Green Party #GreenRoomNZ, they were very kind to include me and the atmosphere was great. The debate was a resounding victory to Cunliffe. He won Round 1, Round 2, Round 3 and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • LIVE STREAM: The Green Room Leader’s Debate from 6:30pm
    The Green Room will be hosted by media commentator Russel Brown, and will feature Green Co-leaders Metiria Turei and Russel Norman responding to the debate live, along with comment from thought leaders and commentators. ‘The Green Room’ 6pm – 8.30pm...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • How many taxpayer funded staff does John Key need to prepare for a Leaders ...
    John Key is currently at the Auckland Stamford Plaza with 40 staff, 4 undercover police cars and an entire floor booked out in preparation for tonights Leader’s debate. Isn’t 40 staff including coms, flown up to Auckland for a debate...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • A brief word on National Party Rodney MP, Mark Mitchell
    MP considers legal action against Nicky HagerThe National MP says he is considering taking a defamation case after the September 20 election.“Someone needs to be held accountable,” he said. Oh really champ? Brothers and sisters, there is a long way...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Greens advertise on Whaleoil – but not on The Daily Blog?
    PaknSave have shown ethical compass and blocked adverts on Whaleoil, yet the Greens are advertising on Whaleoil, and not The Daily Blog? I would imagine there are far more potential Green voters on The Daily Blog then ever are on...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • It’s about the stupid economy stupid
    In focus group meetings, the sleepy hobbits of NZ by a staggering amount all believe that National are better economic stewards of the country than Labour, that’s why, instead of answering questions about blackmailing MPs, trawling brothels for dirt on...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Labour Policy vs National Policy
    John Key’s favourite defence spin at the moment is people want to talk about policy and not hear answers on the ethics of trawling brothels, why Slater was given SIS information, blackmailing MPs into standing down, rigging candidate elections and hacking...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • The Green Room live streamed on TDB 6.30pm tonight for First Leaders debate
    The ‘Green Room’ will stream 6.pm tonight on The Daily Blog during the TV One leaders’ debate.Use #GreenRoomNZ to join in. The Green Room will be hosted by media commentator Russel Brown, and will feature Green Co-leaders Metiria Turei and Russel Norman responding...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Manukau East – the next Coalition in action
    A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of opening Voice Up – a youth forum run by young people in Otara. I had been asked as Chair of the Local Board to set the scene, encouraging young people...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – The Big Bang Theory
    It’s a shame that it took a brain injury for me to start seeing things with such startling clarity. The realisation that lawyering, fishing, parenting, selling cars and racing yachts had common themes was stunning. Not perhaps as stunning as...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, how much Key aro...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • 5AA Australia – New Zealand’s Dirty Politics Aftermath and Polls
    MIL OSI – Source: Selwyn Manning – Analysis Headline: 5AA Australia – New Zealand’s Dirty Politics Aftermath and Polls 5AA Australia: On this week’s Across the Ditch bulletin on 5AA Australia, host Peter Godfery and Selwyn Manning discuss the aftermath...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • La’o Hamutuk calls for inquiry into Timor GAP ‘mismanagement’ of oil ...
    The Suai project on the South Coast … “liberated” land but confused communities.Photo: La’o Hamutuk David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. AN INDEPENDENT Timor-Leste development and social justice agency has called for an inquiry into the Timor GAP corporation...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • What Is Nicky Hager?
    WHAT WILL HISTORY MAKE of Nicky Hager? That slight, perpetually boyish, journalist who descends periodically, like the admonishing angel in a medieval mystery play, to trouble our consciences and wreak merry havoc with the orderly conduct of our political affairs....
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Can anyone in msm explain how after Dirty Politics that they all got played...
    Would you not think, that after reading Dirty Politics, that our mainstream media wouldn’t allow themselves to get tricked and played again by the VERY SAME discredited pundits? The best new feature on Radio NZ is their ‘Blog Watch’ and their...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Crusher Collins caught out lying about Privacy Commissioner – is this her...
    Crusher angry. Crusher smash own career. Crusher more angry. You would think that after getting outed as such a nasty, vicious piece of work in Dirty Politics, that Crusher would be scrambling to dial back the lies and manipulations. Apparently...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Cunliffe vs Key – first leaders debate
    This is your election ‘moderator’ – just one more reason an incoming Government need to sack everyone at TVNZ and reform it into an actual public broadcaster. The first leaders debate happens this Thursday, 7pm on TV One. I have...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – An Old and Honourable Profession
      When Dirty Politics started to reference an ex-prostitute I began to get antsy. My first response was “come on Nicky, we decriminalised in 2003. Its sex worker.” My second response was “Ah oh. Who was it and did they...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Bought and paid for: the dirty politics of climate denial
    Has climate denial in New Zealand been bought and paid for by corporate interests? We already know that the ACT Party’s routine denial is closely linked to the financial support the party receives from wealthy free market fundamentalist Alan Gibbs,...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • If the msm read The Daily Blog, THIS wouldn’t be a surprise – explainin...
    Yawn. How embarrassing for Hamish Rutherford and Andrea Vance, their breathless article today suggests that the idea of Labour and NZ First cutting a  deal over the buy back of assets  is some how new news. Silly mainstream media  journalists. If...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • How much tax does John Key pay compared to a minimum wage worker??
    Yesterday I did some calculations to find out what tax John Key pays compared to a worker on the minimum wage. And I put out this media release for the Mana Movement: MANA Movement Economic Justice spokesperson John Minto is...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Hip hop death threats – the selective outrage of our media
    PM death threat in hip hop songAn Auckland hip-hop crew slammed for releasing a song with lyrics that apparently include a threat to kill Prime Minister John Key are urging young people to enrol to vote. Kill The PM, by...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Watch Slater turn into Key right before your eyes
    Watch Slater turn into Key right before your eyes...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • I don’t always agree with Patrick Gower – but he didn’t deserve this!
    I don’t always agree with Patrick Gower – but he didn’t deserve this weird spear tackle from behind by his own company. I was listening to this interview at the time, and the awkwardness of it must be the worst...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Is it weird Radio NZ ban me yet still have….
    Is it weird Radio NZ ban me for life because I criticised the Prime Minister yet still have Matthew Hooton, David Farrar and Jordan Williams, 3 of the main protagonists revealed in Dirty Politics as part of their ongoing political...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Christchurch GCSB meeting – why mass surveillance matters in 2014
    This is the video for last weeks GCSB meeting in Christchurch. Don’t forget Nicky Hager’s public meeting Wednesday night in Auckland, TDB will live stream the event in the interests of our democracy. Broadcast starts 7.30pm here on TDB....
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Assange, Greenwald to appear at Town Hall meeting? + KDC is not the hacker ...
    Wikileaks founder and the engineer of revealing some of the largest abuses of power in the modern era, Julian Assange, is rumoured to be appearing at the September 15th Town Hall meeting. Assange would join award winning investigative journalist Glen...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Why Paula Bennett will be the next leader and Hooton throws the Prime Minis...
    I don’t think the public have any idea of the behind the scenes meltdown now occurring within National. There are plenty of decent right wingers who all have ethical standards who have looked at what their leaders have been doing and...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – That Awkward Feeling When Your Campaign Goe...
    Urgh. It’s a thankless and nearly impossible task politically firefighting some days. Somebody (who isn’t you, but who’s in your care, or whom you’ve got a close professional relationship with) does or says something stupid; somebody from the Media’s there...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Dirty politics goes viral
    Join the latest social networking craze this election that every Dog Cat and Jabba is putting on their facebook pages.     Joe Trinder – Ngāti Awa Born and born in Ōtepoti Ōtākou, Ex RNZN he is an Information Technology...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Blogwatch: An open letter to David Farrar: Please, be that guy
    Dear David, In light of  Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics, you wrote a blog entitled ‘Some changes on Kiwiblog’ and you suggested it was time to tighten up ship on your website, saying “I want to improve trust in myself,...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • What The Hell Was That! Reflections on the media’s coverage of the Intern...
    WHAT, EXACTLY, DO WE KNOW about the confrontation outside Internet-Mana’s campaign launch? Well, we know the news media was there in force. We also know Internet-Mana’s media person, Pam Corkery, blew her stack. We know that Corkery’s outburst led the...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • NZ First candidate – homophobic, bennie bashing anti-intellectual clown
    Oh God, apart from Ron Mark, Tracey Martin, Curwen Rolinson and Winston before midday, the woeful cavalcade of political circus freaks NZ First seem to attract has picked up another hitchhiker. This time Epsom candidate Cliff Lyon who said this about Labour… “If...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Nicky Hager Public Meeting LIVESTREAM on The Daily Blog 7.30pm Wednesday 27...
    As part of our commitment to the 2014 Election debate, The Daily Blog will Livestream the Nicky Hager public meeting in Auckland, 7.30pm live from the Mt Eden War Memorial this Wednesday on this site. Doors open at 7pm. It...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Opening Night. It’s like an opera!
    On Saturday night just gone, we collectively experienced one of the premier panegyrys of political pageantry in our three yearly electoral cycle. For one glorious weekend evening every three years, it’s not the All Blacks or some Super 14 team, or...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Unions – what ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Timor-Leste’s Parliament handed ‘humiliating’ defeat over harsh media...
    East Timorese journalists raise their hands to approve the Timor-Leste JournalistCode of Ethics in October 2013. Photo: Tempo Semanal/Cafe Pacific   David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. PACIFIC SCOOP reported this week that East Timor’s Appeal Court had scrapped...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • THIS is why we need a public broadcaster!
    The richest 20% of us in NZ own 70% of the wealth, with 18% in the hands of the second richest quintile, and 10% in the hands of the middle quintile. Just 2 per cent was owned by people in...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • A vote for Key is a vote for this
    A vote for Key is a vote for this...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • Why the Secret Intelligence Service feeding Cameron Slater information is s...
    Folks, it doesn’t matter if you are Right or Left, the issue of the Secret Intelligence Service being forced to feed a far right hate speech merchant like Cameron Slater with sensitive information is an ‘us’ issue. The SIS are...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • How lost and irrelevant are ACT?
    So ACT had it’s ‘launch’. Well, what passes as an ACT launch these days. Lot’s of anorak’s with that 1000 yard star and dreams of a Milton Friedman Free Market dancing behind their eyelids all crammed into a room small...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • National Party rowing advert aimed at Gen Xers
    Unkind wags such as myself would suggest that if the above were a real representation of National, it would look more like this…   National know they have the rural mob and the angry provincial vote locked in, with their...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • National Housing propaganda – McGehan Close Revisited
    .   . Housing has become a major, defining issue in New Zealand. We have critical shortages and escalating prices in  in the main centres and falling house values in the regions. The National government has addressed the supply &...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • Spot the difference – the leaders debate
    I watched the Leaders' debate last night and was struck by the fact that John Key accepted all of David Cunliffe's basic assumptions. For example, he did not say that the government should not tell farmers who they could sell...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Colin Craig’s tax figures do not add up and are dishonest
    “Colin Craig’s tax plan is to have two rates of income tax: 0% up to $20,000 and 25% above that. This will leave a $6.4 billion hole in the budget even before the new spending proposed by the Conservatives. The...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Dirty Politics Impacts National Party Support
    Media Release – For Immediate Release Dirty Politics Impacts National Party Support Support for National has dropped by 4.3% to 50.8%, the latest stuff.co.nz / Ipsos political poll shows....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Labour’s environment policy welcomed
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird says that overall the Labour Party’s newly released environment policy would go a long way towards protecting New Zealand’s natural heritage....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • National: Not our Future Marches across New Zealand
    Three weeks before the election, action is being taken across the country voicing a rejection of the National Government's track record and direction. Rallies are being held in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin to oppose National's...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Tune in to tonight’s debate from 7pm
    The countdown is on! You can watch the first leader’s debate for 2014 tonight, 7pm, on TV One ....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Gamblefree Day 1 September
    It's Gamblefree Day this Monday 1 September, the national awareness day for problem gambling in New Zealand. While traditionally celebrated on the first day of September, many events and activities are held both before and after this day to raise...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Success through captioning should be a given as a Right
    Success through captioning should be a given as a Right per the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Alcohol Marketing Committee Questions Government’s Motives
    An Independent Expert Committee on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship (IECAAS) has been formed out of concern amongst alcohol and public health researchers about the government’s Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship (MFAAS)....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • How Much Higher Can Auckland Prices Go?
    National's plan to liberalise the use of Kiwisaver funds and its proposal to raise ts cheap "Welcome Home" loan thresholds to help buyers purchase a new home has been welcomed by home building companies but attacked as a "welfare scheme...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • OPC submission period extended
    We have extended the submission period for the modified reassessment of a bee control affecting five organophosphate and carbamate insecticides (APP202142)....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Vinay Deobhakta struck off roll of barristers and solicitors
    The New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal has ordered former Tauranga lawyer Vinay Deobhakta to be struck off the roll of barristers and solicitors....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Major parties to front up for Climate Voter election debate
    New Zealand’s main political parties will take part in ‘The Great Climate Voter Debate’ on September 3....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Family violence… too big to be ignored
    As Annah Stretton gears up for her New Zealand Fashion Week show on Thursday she is utilizing her spotlight to help change the face of family violence in this country saying “the problem is far too big to ignore”....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Candidate’s SOS to northern Maori voters: Save our seats!
    (Extract from address by Rev Te Hira Paenga to Kura Hourua Maori Political Leaders hui, in Whangarei this evening)....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Mary O’Neill to Stand for the Alliance in Napier
    The Alliance Party has confirmed Mary O’Neill as the Alliance candidate in the Napier Electorate for the 2014 election....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • TONIGHT [28/8/14]: The Great Political Comedy Debate
    It's a night for debating. You could stay home frowning at tonight's Leaders debate, or laugh it up with us at BATS!...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Cunliffe against personal responsibility over billboards
    The accusation by David Cunliffe that the Conservative Party is subscribing to a surveillance society by protecting its billboards via the use of motion sensor cameras reveals an anti-personal responsibility position by the about-to-be-retired Leader...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Groundbreaking health and climate conference
    The World Health Organization (WHO) is holding its first conference on climate change and health at its headquarters in Geneva this week, with New Zealand health experts in attendance....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Te Tai Tokerau Party
    Last night at the Leadership Academy of Company A debate Clinton Dearlove announced the creation of a new political party supported by Whanau and Hapu....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Significant fallout from Dirty Politics allegations
    Dirty politics ... costing National up to 3.8% of its pre-publication support Large numbers of New Zealanders are aware of and talking about the issues raised as a result of the publication of Nicky Hager’s book, Dirty Politics, according to...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Colin Craig is “deluded and dangerous” – Act
    “Colin Craig is proposing a radical transformation of our constitution. The Conservatives are proposing to overthrow of one hundred and fifty odd years of parliamentary democracy and replace it with binding referenda” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • WoF law will evict the poor and students from their houses
    The Green warrant of fitness law will evict the poor and students from their houses, if they’re lucky enough to find a place to rent in the first place...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Police response to IPCA report on ‘out of control’ parties
    Police accept today's Independent Police Conduct Authority report recommendations regarding the handling of 'out of control' parties and has already improved its policies and practices for managing these complex and sometimes violent situations....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Review of Police handling of ‘out of control’ parties
    An Independent Police Conduct Authority review has found that Police are working to ensure officers called upon to deal with out of control gatherings in future are better trained to deal with the situations they may face....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Wynyard and NZ Police Announce Ground-breaking Partnership
    Auckland, 28 August 2014 - Wynyard Group, a market leader in advanced crime analytics software and services, today welcomed the New Zealand Police as a long term partner in its Crime Science Research Institute (CSRI)....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Polls confirm dirty politics out and the Conservatives in
    The latest 3News-Reid Research poll has the Conservative Party on 4.6 per cent which means they are virtually on their way to Parliament. Garth McVicar, the Conservative Party candidate for the Napier electorate believes the polls are proof that the...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Toke the Vote 2014: NORML’s guide to NZ cannabis policies
    NORML’s policy, renewed at our recent national conference , is to encourage supporters to vote for parties and candidates who will work to reform our cannabis laws....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Internet Mana List Embodies Modern Aotearoa
    An impressive mix of personal and professional skills, cultural backgrounds and ages marks the release of Internet MANA’s combined party list. “Our list highlights the calibre of talent woven throughout Internet MANA,” said leader Hone Harawira....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • The Dirty Politics Fallout
    Tonight’s 3News-Reid Research poll shows that the Conservative Party is on the verge of making it into the next Parliament, even without an electorate deal with National. The poll, conducted in the week following the release of Nicky Hager’s...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Te reo Māori trending at New Zealand Fashion Week
    Language and fashion express culture and identity so it’s fitting for the Māori Party to launch its te reo Māori policy at New Zealand’s premiere fashion event in Auckland....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Party And Candidate Lists for 2014 Election Released
    The Electoral Commission has released the nominations for the 2014 General Election, with 15 registered political parties and 554 candidates contesting the election....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Take Steps Against Child Poverty with Us!
    TAKE STEPS AGAINST CHILD POVERTY WITH US! Britomart to Aotea Square, Auckland, 11am, Saturday 6 Sept Music * Interactive Art * Stilt Walkers * Great Speakers * Plus more!...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Leading politicians to debate NZ’s role in the world
    Have you ever wondered where New Zealand stands when it comes to issues beyond our borders? Join Amnesty International's North Shore Group on Monday 1 September for a lively cross party debate and the chance to find out the answer...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Political Debate on Family Violence – Livestream
    The Dunedin Collaboration Against Family Violence is happy to announce the upcoming political debate on Family Violence chaired by Professor Nicola Atwool of the University of Otago. Family Violence is a huge problem in our community and we invite representatives...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Politicians ignore 20% of New Zealanders
    Despite 20% of New Zealanders supporting it, none of the parties currently represented in Parliament endorse the legalisation of cannabis....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Company tax rates
    The Op Ed pages of the left-leaning New York Times are full of articles by economists supporting proposals to dramatically lower Company Taxes. These economists are urging the United States to lower company taxes and point to Canada where the...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Stephen Dudley Case: No appeal or review of discharge
    On 8 August 2014 Crown Law received a request from the office of the Auckland Crown Solicitor to consider a Crown appeal against the discharge without conviction entered in respect of M in the High Court at Auckland on 7...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Dudley Family Statement
    “We are utterly devastated at the news regarding the law not allowing for this unjustified discharge without conviction to be appealed....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Chief Judge: Chief Sized Offender Bias
    “Justice by name, not by nature” states Ruth Money Sensible Sentencing Trust National Spokesperson, of Justice Helen Winkelmann’s decision to discharge without conviction the offender charged with the fatal attack on 15 year old schoolboy Stephen...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Confusion over BPS Reducing Crime and Reoffending Results
    A survey has revealed widespread confusion – even amongst professionals in the justice sector – about what the government’s reducing crime and reoffending progress reports actually mean....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Commission condemns violent attack on Gay Wellingtonians
    The Human Rights Commission has condemned a violent attack on staff and patrons at a gay bar in central Wellington last Friday. GayNZ reported that the alleged attackers were abusive and violent when they realised the bar and the people...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • One down, 12 to go says Community Housing Aotearoa
    The Waimahia Inlet is a step in the right direction for community housing to deliver 20% of New Zealand’s social and affordable housing by 2020, says Community Housing Aotearoa. CHA Director Scott Figenshow says the sector has been set a...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Research considering changes to pedestrian crossing laws
    A University of Canterbury research project has been considering the costs and benefits of a range of potential changes to pedestrian crossing laws that would bring New Zealand in line with the rest of the world....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Dairy farmers and consumers at risk from unapproved GE Grain
    The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) must immediately test all maize and soy for presence of unapproved GE lines coming from the Americas....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • NZ on Air Refuse to Condemn “Kill the PM” Song
    New Zealand On Air has refused to condemn @peace’s 'Kill the PM' song, and will not provide any assurance that no further taxpayer money will be used to support groups that promote violence and political hate. Earlier today the Taxpayers’...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • iPredict Ltd 2014 Election Update #32
    The combined wisdom of iPredict’s 8000 registered traders suggests National has begun a recovery after its prospects crashed last week following the release of Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics . The governing party’s forecast party vote is back...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Juicy carrot for prisoners alarming suggestion – McVicar
    The Conservative Party Justice Spokesman, Garth McVicar says the public will be alarmed to learn that the only tool the Corrections Department has available to get prisoners to behave is to offer them a juicy carrot....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Panel: Fiji’s Return to Democracy
    Fiji’s post-coup elections and their impact in the Pacific o What is the role of the media in the Elections? o How might New Zealand help Fiji on its return to democracy?...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Cross-party consensus on climate change critical
    Senior NZ health professionals welcome recent policy announcements on climate change by major political parties, saying cross-party consensus is critical to address this leading health issue....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
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