Cunliffe’s Labour is center left, moderate one working for the many struggling Kiwis doing it tough in as opposed to Key’s cronyist, corporate-backed, radically “neoliberal”, government that disdains democracy and changes laws to suit the wealthy international elites.
The NAct supporting right are looking a little shaky, a little scared and have lost their Key-fronted smugness, in the face of the rise of Cunliffe in the public sphere.
With the positive publicity of the Labour leader race, and Cunliffe’s well-considered and balanced caucus reshuffle, and the failed launch of the right wing smear campaign, John Key and the NZ Herald is using some subtle, and not so subtle spin, that positions Key’s government as a solidly Kiwi “centre right” one, while spinning Cunliffe’s Labour (and Greens) as the alien, “far left” enemy, trying to steal a victory from the rightful front runners.
Key Loses his “Centre”
John Key is still trying to spin that a Labour-Green government, would be “far left”. [Mike Treen spells out the difference between Cunliffe's moderate social democracy and Treen's socialism]
Cunliffe already had a good response to that bit of fiction, saying:
No one can disagree with the objective of ensuring all children live in dry, warm homes …
Nat supporting, Herald columnist, Audrey Young cannot deny the stats – especially as she works within the MSM that pays close attention to each blip and often short lived glitches in the too frequent political polls.
But she goes, uncritically, with Key’s fairly consistent “far left” spin line.
“Labour have had extensive coverage over the past six weeks as they’ve gone through their change of leadership. The polls move around a lot and I’ve always thought that the election in 2014 will be very tight. This poll indicates that.”
He said closer to the election, people would start to look at the possible coalition options.
“Voters will start to look at what sort of Government they want to lead us beyond 2014.
What we do know with Labour is it will be a Government that will have to be formed with the Greens and given the public statements of David Cunliffe, it’s going to be very much a far left Government on offer versus a centre-right government that has led New Zealand over the last five years.”
Yeah right: A “centre right” government that is privatising core state assets; has consistently bashed beneficiaries, leaving many struggling to survive on meagre incomes or find places to live; one that has consistently undermined workers’ rights; one that damages the resources that is the basis of the country’s survival and well-being; one that has changed laws, and installed polices, for their cronies in Sky City, Warner Brothers. … and on it goes.
Showing the uncertainties and concerns about his slip in support, and in contradiction of Key’s fairly lengthy statement about the positive Labour-Green poll result, Key is reported, by Young, as saying:
… he did not really have much to say about Mr Cunliffe’s result in the first full poll under is leadership.
Down the bottom of the article, giving it less credence than the more highly positioned statements by Key, Young summarises the opposition perspective. She frames it with a statement that spins Key’s government as solid and stable:
National has faced fewer controversies in recent months than it did at the start of the year, but the Opposition has been accusing it of “crony capitalism” over issues such as the $30 million payment to Pacific Aluminium Smelter, possible help for Chorus through internet pricing and the SkyCity convention centre deal.
National has passed the GCSB legislation, faced uproar over limits to snapper catches, and has made progress on its next part-sale of state-owned energy company Meridian.
The NZ Herald editorial Spins to the Right: following the latest Poll Result.
A subtle way of trying to undermine the oppositions legitimate criticisms of the government. This morning’s NZ Herald editorial shows the extent of their fears that their favoured National government will be booted out in next year’s election. The editorial headline positions Labour boldly as the enemy at the gate of the hopes of the NZ people, shamelessly playing to hopes of an Americas Cup win:
Editorial: Labour does an Oracle in latest poll
For the first time in almost five years the Labour Party is “back in the game”, as they are saying of Oracle. A climb of nearly seven points in our poll today is not only a remarkable gain, it has come at the expense of National rather than Labour’s ally, the Greens.
The editorial gives a fairly factual outline of the poll result, but goes on, at length, to undermine its significance. One of the main ways it does this is to revert to the old, First Past the Post mentality: saying that the people will only support a government formed by the party that wins the largest share of the vote in the election:
Instinct tells politicians the public would not respect a government formed by those that finished a distant second and third at the election, though their combined seats outnumbered the winner’s.
Every election New Zealand has held under MMP has awarded power to the party first past the post. The next election is unlikely to be an exception. Leaders of the main parties know a government needs more than a paper majority, it needs what Helen Clark called moral authority. That comes from winning.
After a long period when the MSM consistently reported any election contest would be between the possibility of a National-led or Labour-Green government, the fear-driven NZ Herald editorial has pulled this old anachronism out of the rubble of its attic.
Nick Smith on the (DOC-Ruataniwha Dam) Ropes
Meanwhile, the main weak point currently int he Key government machine, is Nick Smith, struggling to retain any credibility over the management of the Hawkes Bay Regional Council, Ruataniwha Dam, water quality issue. The charge is that Smith ignored DOC advice on the concerns about water quality, in supporting the Dam submission. Labour’s Ruth Dyson is skeptical.
“It is clear Mr Smith interfered in this process and put a stop to the Department of Conservation doing the job it was set up to do.”
As is Russel Norman.
Conservation Minister Nick Smith faced further pressure today over his role in how a Department of Conservation DOC report about the project was watered down.
Dr Smith faced parliamentary questions on the matter from the Greens and Labour and Labour Leader David Cunliffe told reporters this morning there was “more to come” on the issue.
Last week it emerged that DOC prepared a 34-page draft report setting out its concerns about the way the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council planned to manage water quality issues arising from the proposed Ruataniwha Dam.
However, senior Department of Conservation (DOC) managers instead submitted to the board of inquiry considering the project a much shorter document – just two paragraphs – which did not deal with those concerns.
Dr Smith has denied having influence over the changes to the submission and says he was unaware of the draft version until last week.
Labour-Green (Mana) – inclusive, stable, sustainable and livable New Zealand for all.
[Update] Credit where it’s due. The Herald writers aren’t unrelentingly anti-Labour/Green. It’s more the on-balance slant towards the right, especially as seen in editorials headline editing.
Fran O’Sullivan, too often a Key cheerleader, has a more positive column about Cunliffe and Labour today.