web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

Local Bodies: National’s Campaign Strategy Stinks

Written By: - Date published: 9:58 am, June 20th, 2014 - 25 comments
Categories: corruption, david cunliffe, education, election 2014, Environment, greens, john key, Mining, Minister for Photo-ops, national, same old national - Tags: , , , , , , ,

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAReposted from Local Bodies.

We all know from reading Nicky Hager’s The Hollow Men (or watching the documentary) that the National Party actually advocates for a small section of society. Their policies rarely support most New Zealanders and after each period of a National led Government we have costly messes like  leaky buildings and dead miners as the aftermath. This isn’t to say that Labour shouldn’t take responsibility for not repealing dodgy legislation, but National has always stood for less regulation, fewer protections for workers and the environment and an upward flow of money to the already rich.

The lasting consequences of this current National led Government are potentially going to be much more costly than the 1990s version. Our environmental degradation has never been worse, child poverty now effects 27% of children and Government debt has increased by $50 billion. There will be no easy or cheap fixes for any of these and we are still paying the costs from the 1990s.

The only people who do really well under National Governments are the already rich and the evidence for this can be readily seen. The wealthy are the only ones with any discretionary spending and it is mainly being thrown on their lifestyleshouses and new cars. The trickle down theory is still a myth with little credibility. National relies on the short term memory of voters and pre-election spending to create an image of caring for the majority when, in reality, we still have the fastest growing inequality in the OECD.

The National Party knows that most New Zealanders actually want clean rivers, we don’t want our state assets sold off and we don’t like dodgy back room deals with overseas corporates. Accusations and suggestions of corruption and conflicts of interest continually swirl around this Government and any questions regarding these are met with well practiced dodging and weaving from National’s Ministers.

National has cleverly realised that turning the election campaign into a presidential one allows them to shift the focus from their lack of effectiveness or substantial policy to personal attacks on the credibility of opposition leaders. National have an abundance of corporate smarts and one of the largest teams of spin doctors (18% increase in 2013 Budget) of any previous Government. As with our 100% Pure tourist campaign, they know it is the image and spin rather than the substance that has the most sway at the end of the day.

Key has been marketed well, he has a light portfolio load and is able to be continually placed in the media eye rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous and powerful. His image appears with royalty, Hollywood moguls and the US President. He is our most successful celebrity Prime Minister who focuses on who he is seen with rather than the influence he can exert. Although he lives in a huge mansion, holidays in Hawaii and surrounds himself with body guards, Key is able to project the manner of an average kiwi bloke. His relaxed, ‘she’ll be right’ approach strikes a chord with many New Zealanders for whom image is more important than what he actually does (try and name even one real achievement). Key is the Ronald Reagan of New Zealand politics, his genial folksy manner hides the calculated shifting of wealth from those who need it the most. This is most clearly seen in education where private schools have received an inordinate amount of funding despite catering for only 4% of students. Maori and Pasifika children, the ‘priority learners’, have actually received diminishing support.

John Key collects dirt in the same way Muldoon did. He has been quite open about his regular catch ups with the mud slinging blogger, Cameron Slater, and has referred to his file of damaging information. Any time he or his Government gets accused of dodgy activity he doesn’t even try to deny it, he just pulls out something to throw back and the word ‘hypocrisy’ is thrown around with much enthusiasm. This has been used with great effectiveness to shift the attention from National’s very compromised and conflicted relationships with wealthy Chinese businessmen. The charges against National’s Ministers are actually quite substantial and, whether it be the favoritism shown to Orivida or attempts to influence police, National doesn’t come out well.

When David Cunliffe came out swinging with accusations regarding the Government’s relationship with the Chinese businessman Donghau Liu, Key was able to reach into his extensive file and pull out a letter that Cunliffe had sent in support of Liu in 2003. It didn’t matter that there was no hint of corruption or undue influence being applied, a connection was found. Cunliffe’s high moral ground was kicked out from under him and Key again avoided the scrutiny that should have been focused on his Ministers’ behaviour and the media lapped it up.

While one could say that Labour, and the opposition in general, deserve what ever happens if they don’t cover their backs, there does a appear to be an over-eagerness on the media’s behalf when National holds out their diversionary tidbits. The Government should be held to account for their actions and too often the accusations from Key have little actual substance, yet little is done to check their veracity or relevance. How many times has Key suggested that Russel Norman did a deal with Dotcom when Russel has asked him a particularly hard question?

Maurice Williamson is still an MP, Judith Collins is still considered the highest ranked woman in National’s cabinet and John Banks was able to have the confidence of the PM despite serious charges hanging over him…and yet a perfectly reasonable letter from Cunliffe, requesting information for a forgotten constituent, has the potential of causing him to lose the Labour leadership.

Despite their shocking record in government National remain high in the polls because they have successfully shifted the debate about politics to personality and image. They have cut funding to Statistics New Zealand and removed any substantial independent reviews of the effectiveness of their governance so that their spin dominates what is in the public domain. They managed to dispatch Goff and Shearer through personal attacks and smear campaigns they are ramping it up against Cunliffe. Up to now their personal attacks on Metiria and Russel have backfired but National’s strategy is clear and this campaign is going to be a dirty one.

25 comments on “Local Bodies: National’s Campaign Strategy Stinks”

  1. realist 1

    “Up to now their personal attacks on Metiria and Russel have backfired but National’s strategy is clear and this campaign is going to be a dirty one.”

    Couldnt agree more, its left them wallowing in poor poll results.. no doubt they will learn from these previous mistakes

    • Nakiman 1.1

      “Couldnt agree more, its left them wallowing in poor poll results.. no doubt they will learn from these previous mistakes”
      Realist I think you should change your name to dreamer
      What part of National polling at 50% is wallowing in poll results?
      Give up the one handed typing

      • Lanthanide 1.1.1

        Woosh!

        • Lanthanide 1.1.1.1

          That’s the sound that jokes make when they fly over your head, btw.

          • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1.1

            It’s actually a tad tragic that you had to explain that to Naki explicitly, but I understand the necessity for having to do so.

      • realist 1.1.2

        Sorry sarcasm is the lowest form of wit i appreciate….

        My prosthesis does tend to limit my typing speed i grant you

  2. vto 2

    I just feel for the fish who are getting shunted aside and shat on ….. they will have nowhere left to live ….

    Saw some report a couple days ago that said most all estuaries in Southland are on the verge of collapse ….

    what a sad way to go about life.

    shame on them

  3. The Real Matthew 3

    Shocking Record in Government??
    – Crime down by huge %
    – Unemployment down
    – GDP up
    – Current Account Surplus
    – Great advancements on Treaty Claims
    – Record number of new marine reserves

    I put it to The Standard readers that this government in one of the greatest we’ve ever seen

    • ianmac 3.1

      Blah Blah Matthew.

    • James Thrace 3.2

      Crime Down – False

      Police were given new “tools” to avoid them having to deal with ever diminishing resources to prosecute people. Such “tools” have resulted in a myriad of misdemeanours being discarded with no effect on the criminal.

      If you want to visit Wellington Central Police Station’s back office, where no staff are evident, you will see pile upon pile of paperwork, some dating back to 2005, which hasn’t even been entered into NIA, because there are no staff.

      Sure, the touted benefits of “being on the road” and “ever connected” with our shiny new ipads and iphones couldn’t be further from the Truth. Police still have to fill out paperforms in duplicate, ensure that the crime fits, and whether misdemeanour applies. The back office staff used to fill this gap, but now the constables, seargents, and even DIs have to do it themselves – because there are no staff.

      Police are tight lipped about it as usual, but it’s a ticking time bomb until the next Wairarapa Child Abuse case comes up for sunlight.

      Crime has increased – but stats show it’s dropped because we have no staff to enter it into NIA which provides those stats.

      Unemployment down

      Lie. It’s increased, but as usual, WINZ stats provide 1/3rd of the figure. The rest of the figures are pulled outa Pulla Benefit’s arse.

      People simple don’t bother signing up at WINZ anymore.

      GDP Up
      – only because of the Canterbury earthquakes. Nothing else.

      CAS – See GDP up

      Treaty Claims
      – many of which were set in train by the 5th labour government. National hasn’t initiated any new ones.

      Marine Reserves
      – For every reserve, there’s an oil well approved.
      Reconcile that.

    • geoff 3.3

      Don’t forget that most of the jobs National has ‘created’ are minimum wage, part-time bullshit jobs that people cant actually support themselves on.

      Underemployment in this country is a fucking disgrace and National have only further exacerbated the problem by destroying the rights of workers.

      Evil, evil pricks.

    • Kapplan 3.4

      “I put it to The Standard readers that this government in one of the greatest we’ve ever seen”
      If you rate governments by their ability to get a large portion of the constituency to eat shit, tell everyone how good it tastes, and how they can’t wait for their next helping, then yes I agree with you.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.5

      You seem to have missed the only one that’s real:

      Government corruption up.

    • Ronnie Chow 3.6

      Labour is the source of all wealth, the political economists assert. And it really is the source — next to nature, which supplies it with the material that it converts into wealth. But it is even infinitely more than this. It is the prime basic condition for all human existence, and this to such an extent that, in a sense, we have to say that labour created man himself.

    • dave 3.7

      and key is greatest leader ever they proble beleave there own spin

  4. karol 4

    Excellent post on Key’s celebrity PM-ship and how the compliant MSM enable the business-style manipulation of Kiwis’ views.

    Thus the remnants of democracy in NZ wither and die, while many Kiwis are oblivious to what they have lost.

  5. Davethebroken 5

    No doubt right wing comment makers say the direct opposite – with both sides quoting it as fact. I think the comments here reflect the opinions of those who believe Nicky Hager – personally I can’t reconcile independent reporting of fact by someone with huge political bias. Would be like adhering to a book by Don Brash on the Treaty.

    • Molly 5.1

      Which goes to show that you haven’t bothered reading a Nicky Hager book. Other People’s Wars seemed to have about a third of the book in references. He was employed as a researcher and his method is meticulous.

      Don Brash? They limited his soundbite to match his capacity to understand – Kiwi or Iwi? Anything more would have been too taxing and liable to be mangled.

  6. Julz 6

    Excellent and insightful article on what is happening

    • Ronnie Chow 6.1

      History calls those men the greatest who have ennobled themselves by working for the common good; experience acclaims as happiest the man who has made the greatest number of people happy.

      • Colonial Viper 6.1.1

        For his soul shall deservedly reside within the Kingdom of Heaven, and his good kamma shall bear for him full enjoyment of the fruits of moral thought word and deed.

  7. Jrobin 7

    John Keys spin doctors must have been nursing a hangover today though as they forgot to give him his puppet lines when backing the military might of his best buddies and true compatriots. He looked a complete gimp. Oh the shame, David Lange must be turning in his grave at what we are becoming thanks to this sterling leadership.

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

1 2 3 7

  • Time for NZ to prohibit the killing of great apes
    That ban was widely hailed, and spurred efforts in other countries to get similar bans. However, apes are still being exploited, abused and killed, both in captivity and in the wild. Examples of cruelty, neglect and abuse abound. Apes are… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    2 days ago
  • Auckland building consents: Tragic
    The only word to describe the latest building consent figures for Auckland is ‘tragic’, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Whatever the Government is doing to address the Auckland housing crisis, it is clearly not working. ...
    2 days ago
  • A whiff of a new biosecurity scandal?
    A pest which could create havoc for New Zealand’s horticulture and agriculture sector must be as much a focus for the Government as hunting out fruit flies, Labour’s Biosecurity spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “While the Ministry for Primary Industries is… ...
    2 days ago
  • Government shrugs off health sector crisis
    Despite new evidence showing that cuts to health spending are costing lives the Government continues to deny the sector is struggling, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Health services in New Zealand are in crisis. ...
    3 days ago
  • Parata lowered the bar for failing charter school
    When Hekia Parata became aware that the Whangaruru charter school was experiencing major problems her first action was to drop standards by reducing the number of qualified teachers they had to employ, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins has revealed. “Hekia… ...
    3 days ago
  • National not being straight about the economy
    John Key and Bill English need to be straight with New Zealanders about the damage their failure to diversify the economy is doing, after new figures show export growth plunged due to a collapse in dairy exports, says Grant Robertson.… ...
    3 days ago
  • Mind the Gap
    This week the International Monetary Fund released a report on the wider economic value in closing the gender pay gap. When even the bastions of free-market economics start to raise concerns about gender pay gaps, we have to realise how… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Labour will hold National to parental leave promise
    Labour will hold National to its promise to increase the support given to new parents of premature, multiple birth and babies born with disabilities, Labour’s paid parental leave campaigner Sue Moroney says. "I am naturally disappointed that after battling for… ...
    4 days ago
  • It was all just pillar talk
    Steven Joyce’s confession that he can no longer guarantee a pillar-free design for the New Zealand International Convention Centre shows the Government has abandoned its dream of creating an ‘iconic’ ‘world-class’ structure, says Labour Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “Steven… ...
    4 days ago
  • Australians move on offshore speculators
    John Key might want to have a quiet word with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott about Canberra's just-announced crack down on offshore speculators when he visits New Zealand this week, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says."Tony Abbott's centre right government… ...
    4 days ago
  • Government at odds on overseas driver crashes
    National backbencher Jacqui Dean has spoken out about overseas driver crashes, putting herself at odds with Prime Minister John Key who is on record as saying it’s not a big issue, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “I’m not surprised… ...
    4 days ago
  • Human Rights and the Palestine Crisis
    Last week I heard two Palestinians speak at Wellington events about the ongoing crisis in their country. Samar Sabawi spoke to a full house about the history of Palestine and gave us a lucid and disturbing account of the situation… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    4 days ago
  • Time to take real care of our kids
    An Amnesty International report has once again criticised New Zealand’s track record on looking after our kids, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. The annual report, which looks at global human rights abuses highlights not only the fact that high… ...
    4 days ago
  • John Key wrong about Labour’s war vote
    John Key’s desperate claims that the former Labour Government didn’t put combat troop deployment to a Parliamentary vote are simply wrong, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says. “It was disgraceful that the Prime Minister ran rough shod over democracy and… ...
    4 days ago
  • Māori language bill needs work
     It is clear that the first draft of the Māori Language Bill was about structures and funding rather than the survival of te reo Māori, Labour’s Māori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says.  “Labour is pleased that the Minister of Māori… ...
    4 days ago
  • Report proves troubled school shouldn’t have opened
    The long-awaited release of an Education Review Office report into Northland’s troubled Whangaruru charter school proves it should never have been approved in the first place, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This report identifies problems with absenteeism and disengaged… ...
    5 days ago
  • Reply to PM’s statement on deploying troops to Iraq
    “The decision of any Government to send troops to a conflict zone is a very serious one, and it is right that this House takes time to consider it, to debate it, and, ideally, to vote on it, but we… ...
    5 days ago
  • Minister must take action on death trap slides
    Workplace Relations Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse must take urgent action to ensure inflatable amusement rides don’t become death traps for children, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Relations Iain Lees-Galloway says. “No one wants to stop kids having fun, but horror stories… ...
    5 days ago
  • Manus Island and the New Zealand Government
    This week the Greens have participated in awareness activity about Manus Island, the refugee camp on an island in Papua New Guinea where Australia dumps asylum seekers. John Key says that he has every confidence in the Australian Government’s claim… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • Election Inquiry – Getting accessible voting on the agenda
    James Shaw has been doing a series of blogs on the Election Inquiry into last year’s general election.  I thought this was a great opportunity to raise an issue very dear to me – accessible voting. Last year’s general election… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    1 week ago
  • RMA changes no solution to Christchurch housing
    Housing will continue to be a big issue in 2015. The latest Consumer Price Index, released last month, shows both good news and bad news on the housing front. After years of being the most expensive place to build a… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Saving kokako in South Auckland’s Hunua Ranges
    It is amazing that you can hear the song of the endangered North Island kokako in South Auckland’s Hunua Ranges, less than 50 kms from the central city. A heavy schedule of policy workshops at the Green Party’s Policy… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Let’s not turn a blind eye to human rights
    The Cricket World Cup has just opened in New Zealand, and it’s an opportunity for us to shine on the world stage. International sport can be a chance for us to build relationships with other countries, and examine what it… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Its Just Not Cricket
    This week it was my privilege to work with Sri Lankan Tamil communities in this country and host Australian journalist and human rights advocate Trevor Grant. I knew a bit about Trevor from his biography but I didn’t know just… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for NZ to #BeCrueltyFree
    The Government is about to progress the final stages of the Animal Welfare Amendment bill. This will be our last opportunity to get changes made to improve the bill to ensure a better outcome for animals. I have put forwards… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    2 weeks ago
  • We want access!
    Access to buildings is a big issue for many New Zealanders. It looks like that, due to the hard work and persistence of people in the disability community, the Government may finally be starting to take access to buildings seriously.… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens call on Super Fund to divest from fossil fuels
    The Green Party today called on the New Zealand Superannuation Fund (the Fund) to divest from fossil fuels, starting immediately with coal. The call was accompanied with a new report, Making money from a climate catastrophe: The case for divesting… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Young Kiwis’ housing crisis
    Shelter is a fundamental human need along with food, water and clean air. All humans need adequate shelter; it’s a human right. Warm, safe, stable accommodation is critical for young people to be able learn and grow and just be.… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 weeks ago
  • On the River Patrol in Te Tai Tokerau
    Last Wednesday, I went on a tour of some of Northland’s rivers with  Millan Ruka from Environmental River Patrol as he monitored water quality throughout Te Tai Tokerau. The dry conditions meant we couldn’t use the boat but we visited… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    3 weeks ago
  • Opening of Parliament 2015
    Russel NormanOpening of Parliament Speech February 2015 Tēnā koutou Tēnā koutou Tēnā koutou katoa. A brief history of climate change What a summer! It's been hot, even here in Wellington, hotter than any summer I can remember. All… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    3 weeks ago

Removed at the request of The Daily Blog.
Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere