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The best of The Standard in 2007

Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, December 28th, 2007 - 38 comments
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As we contemplate a bad year in the polls for Labour, the signs are pointing to National cruising onto victory in 2008. Or are they? Labour’s mistake may have been that it assumed a booming economy would be enough to carry the day, given that its credentials for a social agenda will always leave National struggling.

But what does National have going for it against Labour’s credentials? They appear to be fresh-faced and will offer tax cuts – that’s about it. No real indication of how they would cope with international relations, the climate-change-challenge, escalating health needs, etc, etc.

But consider this. The fatal chink for National may well be the weakness that is John Key. For me The Standard highlight for 2007 was this YouTube post by all-your-base in August.

I’d be interested in any comments with nominations for the best-of-The Standard in 2007.

Happy New Year.

38 comments on “The best of The Standard in 2007”

  1. Kevin 2

    Booming economy or house of cards? Let’s summarise Labour’s idea of a booming economy and “better socials credentials”. It consists really of three things (1) a tax system whereby any real wealth flowing into the country is redistributed so completely that our businesses can’t capitalise and stay competitive. It is so horrendously complex and non-transparent that many non-workers and low income/low skill workers are substantially better off than middle income workers (2) make up the deficit by allowing individuals to borrow 100% of house values and take out NINJA loans (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninja_loans#Ninja_loan) to prop up the retail sector and make it look like our economy is pumping (3) pay off these loans by exporting our land causing houses to become unaffordable for average New Zealanders.

    Does anyone else think this is a booming economy??

  2. Kimble 3

    “They appear to be fresh-faced and will offer tax cuts – that’s about it.”

    You lot will never be taken seriously if you continue to completely discount the opposition. You will just seem like Labour party cheer leaders, which, btw, I notice is how you are most often described.

  3. illuminatedtiger 4

    Cosmopolitician. Minus the comments ;-)

  4. The PC Avenger 5

    Kimble, I have to agree. You can’t discount a party and its policies unless you know what they are. Which, of course, we don’t.

    Perhaps some kind of partial discounting may be appropriate, based on how much policy they have released.

  5. Kimble 6

    PC, whinging about the lack of policy releases from National is infantile. There is no reason for National to release policy before the election season.

    And assuming that they dont have a policy simply because they refuse to show their hand before the game starts is idiotic.

  6. The PC Avenger 7

    Thats good, because I wasn’t whinging or making that assumption.

    Nice of you to read into it that way though.

  7. dad4justice 8

    Russell Brown is the owner of the Paris Hilton blog, it is just a socialist theatre for the liarbore gravy train parasitic suckholes, while the sub standard sewer is a hang out for communist’s resembling rabid toilet rats who smell like skunks .

    Well done whale for eclipsing both of the lefty twitter blogs who are the ultimate chasm’s of intellectual prostitutes that work for Aunty Hulun the fish smelling demented supreme leader in the land of the long black lie .

  8. James Sleep 9

    The Standard (Since starting) has been fucking brilliant.

    I have to say I agree with you Z K Muggletonspofin that the best post was from all-your-base back in August.

    To end on a negative note – please excuse my bad use of the english language,

    D4J you are the fucking deluded sewer rat, you are not the one who has worked hard to bring thousands of kiwi familes out of poverty while extending the rights of minority groups – thats just two things the Labour led govt has delivered.

    What has John Key delivered = Nothing

    What was something his front bench delivered = Oh thats right the ECA, something that fucked the rights of New Zealand workers!

  9. Santi 10

    “…please excuse my bad use of the english language”

    What’s new, James? You have abused and raped the English language for so long that your latest statement is no surprise at all. You and your ilk are living proof of the idiocy of today’s NZ education system, producing half-wits and morons galore.

    Is it true you miss your old nemesis Aunty Helen?

  10. burt 11

    James Sleep

    The ECA didn’t fuck anything. If the unions are so f-ing crash hot and so absolutely brilliant why is NZ one the lowest paid countries in the OECD after 9 years of Labour govt and 8 years of the ERA? Is 8 years not enough time to fix anything? It’s all National’s fault yada yada yada Labour good – National bad – yada yada yada. Just the stuff the standard is founded on – partisan hackery.

    The way I always see you and D4J posting together I sometimes wonder if you are one in the same person having your own little game.

  11. Monty 12

    can anyone explain this from Bill Ralston this morning in the Herald on Sunday “Chortling Labour MPs refer to it as their “neutron bomb”. It is a rather scandalous tale about a senior National MP timed to detonate when the election campaign begins.”

    Is this the great scandal that the Dom Post referred to yesterday that Labour are going to pin all their hopes upon? Could a member of the National Party be Gay (and in the closet) – well maybe Labour have an MPwho is a closet gay, The crime according to Ralston is Ancient – so it may be an MP smacked a child some years ago – , or maybe had some financial difficulty some years ago.

    When details come out, it will no doubt be a storm in a tea cup.

    What is certain is that unless the scandal involves Key it will not make a shread of difference, and if Labour are pinning all their hopes on this “neutron Bomb” then Labour are even more pathetic than I ever thought. It will be seen by the electorate (who are so sick of Labour already) as a desperate measure by a nasty and dying government.

  12. Z K Muggletonspofin 13

    “…can anyone explain this from Bill Ralston this morning in the Herald…”

    I have it; John Key was seen sniffing vegetables in a Porirua Farmers’ Market. Nah…if National lose the election it will be because Labour have finally demonstrated that they have delivered much better government than National has ever managed and that they can be trusted more than National to deliver against their policy positions. Frankly it’s all in Labour’s hands, which means it will be a travesty of justice if National can win with smiling John and no policy other than a tax cut.

  13. Monty 14

    Don’t you socialists worry about National Party Policy – they will release it when it suits National – not Labour. They are working away on policy and in due course it will be released much like Labour did in 1999, and National did in 2005 (I was not in NZ in 2002 so cannot comment there)

    We could also ask back – where is Labour’s policy? Nothing much coming from them at the moment – so are Labour bereft of policy? The evidence would suggest that.

  14. IrishBill 15

    Monty, you’re welcome to your delusion. National has already written its policies. It did so a long time ago. I’ve got hold of a few of them (and let me tell you I know why they don’t want to talk about them) and will be releasing them via the Standard in the new year (I figure if they’re not gonna get around to it someone has to). Happy New Year.

  15. deemac 16

    Happy New Year to all at The Standard
    A great read apart from some of the right wing comments which are not so much TLDR as “too tedious/repetitive” didn’t read – and how about a word limit for comments?

  16. Policy Parrot 17

    The scandal does involve a senior National front-bencher, who whilst being very active in parliament, has not been required to front any significant policy releases since 2003 to my recollection.

    The scandal will be very damaging for this individual, whether it be so for National depends how they handle the fallout. Could go very very bad for them.

  17. Oh, joy! Labour’s going to engage in another round of mud-slinging! This is Labour’s answer to restoring a nineteen point gap in the polls, is it? After Trevor Mallard and David Benson-Pope both met their own political ends, I would have thought Labour might have learned better. Evidently not.

    Meanwhile, watch out another story breaking tomorrow. The New Year’s honours list will be one to watch. I wonder which cash-for-honours scandal will erupt in the New Year?

  18. James Sleep 19

    Ok seeing I link whored over at Kiwiblog I have to here.

    http://www.newzblog.wordpress.com

    Hope you don’t mind guys.

  19. Monty 20

    So Labour have a bit of dirt on a National MP. Labour are going to drop hints, play dirty, sling mud, and generally get down in the gutter (where they are comfortable).

    Quite Frankly, after the long list of crimes from labour that include but are not limited to fraud, corrupttion, theft, lies, bullying, indecent exposure, pissing in public, speeding, unjustified dismissal, BDSM, perving, and sexual misconduct, it will need to be something very shocking to convince anyone to change their vote from National. The fact it is not John Key / or even Bill English means it will be a mild and short term amusement.

    So what else do you pathetic nasty socialists have that could start to close the 19 point gap in the polls – certainly the limited readership on this blog is having a nil impact on the polls despite you obsession with john Key (who is accoding to the Herald on Sunday PM in waiting.)

  20. James Kearney 21

    I would have thought you righties could lay off the attack dog politics for a couple of weeks at least. Happy new year to everyone else.

  21. Tops 22

    Agreed James.There are some good right wingers on here but there are others who just don’t know when to give it a rest and behave like human beings. Disappointing really as they ruin it for the rest of us.

  22. dad4justice 23

    Policy Parrot – talking about scandals . Think about damage control when the truth finally emerges ? It will come out ! People are going too be livid with liarbore , haha , can’t wait . Love Peter xx

  23. Phil 24

    IF labour do have a “Neutron Bomb”, it isn’t going to help them close the gap. As we saw all through this term, mudslinging was more damaging to the party the threw it in the first place.

    That said, my money is on it being something about Murray Mc – I can’t understand what value he adds to the Nats

  24. burt 25

    IMHO Labour would be completely foolish to go anywhere near scandals. They have had enough of them and I’m sure we haven’t heard the half of it yet.

    The voters won’t be swayed by “National did it too” from Labour, they have seen that used to justify far to many things already.

    It’s time for a change.

    It’s all looking tits up now boys and girls when even Labour pillars like Tim Shadbolt are running adds like this.

  25. James thinks Labour has lifted thousands out of poverty.

    Well James I think you need to travel somewhere outside of the Wairapa and Wellington. Next time you are in Auckland i’ll take you on a drive through Sth Auckland and show you those thousands who have been lifted out of poverty, I’ll even let you out to ask how they feel after being lifted out of poverty and as a final act I’ll pull the zip up on the body bag after they cut your heart out to sell for another bag of P.

    You don’t know anything little boy, stop reading Michael’s and Helen’s talking points, pull your head out of your arse and wake up to the sad fact that despite spending literally billions on “poverty” surprise, surprise it is still there.

  26. Labour’s mistake may have been that it assumed a booming economy would be enough to carry the day…

    No, Labour’s mistake has been to turn everything it’s touched to shit for three years. You’re low in the polls because you’ve presented the Opposition with nothing but fat, slow-moving targets for as long as anyone can remember (voters, including me, having bloody short memories).

    But what does National have going for it against Labour’s credentials? They appear to be fresh-faced and will offer tax cuts – that’s about it.

    It’s also absolutely all they need. Key isn’t a weakness, he’s a strength. He’s a cipher: a friendly, personable airhead. In other words, exactly what an opposition needs going into an election against dour authoritarians. The less he says, the better he’ll do, so National’s current approach of not releasing any alternatives to what the govt’s doing is grade A stuff.

    And then we have the supposed “neutron bomb.” If there’s any truth to this, I’ll be in the frighteningly unusual position of actually agreeing with Insolent Prick:

    This is Labour’s answer to restoring a nineteen point gap in the polls, is it? After Trevor Mallard and David Benson-Pope both met their own political ends, I would have thought Labour might have learned better.

  27. Aunty Helen 28

    Welcome back to the blogsphere, my child James. I’ve been longing for your return since you left your last blog, that bastion of intellectualism and independence.

    Be careful with some of the grown-ups there. They can be nasty and you could get injured. Always protect your hands (the left, in particular), because is useful when you pay your daily tribute to Onan.

    Egalitarian regards from your Supreme leader.

  28. Happy New Year everyone. Whaleoil – I will take you up on that offer. I will get out and talk to them about how working for families has helped them more than 9 years under a National govt.

    Anyway, have a good one.

    2007 over and out.

  29. AncientGeek 30

    Looks like another year has just rolled over… Load banging in the background from fireworks. For a minute I thought it was the local substation blowing again (did a few days ago) and was fearing for my UPS (again).

    Anyway a happy new year, on a new server in a server rack with a better UPS.

  30. James Sleep 31

    Happy new year peeps. This is my first comment for 2007.

    Only theStandard are good enough to have my lucky first.

    Have a good one

    James

  31. John 32

    Happy New Year all.

    I’d love to know what that once over paid TVNZ bureaucrat Ralston was on about.

    Could it be the Incident on Fort Street? Or is it something juicy on the in the closet, out of the closet, no wait back in the closet National MP or maybe it is about the one who plays the family values card who has a son running around from a premarital affair, or could it be the affair with the pollster, then again maybe it is just more on Equity Corp relations.

    Or perhaps it is an even better surprise.

    The Nats really are a bunch of hypocrites when it comes to social issues and the ‘moral high ground’, the more they live their lives one way while voting or campaigning as if they live another way, the more they deserve to be exposed.

    Oh, and Monty, the best thing about mud is that it sticks. You and your Nat buddies on the rabid right throw it at Labour every week. Hope you are able to take as good as you give…

  32. Monty 33

    John – Mud does not seem to stick to that venal Helen Clark – although the teflon coating is now worn and is certainly exposing the corrupt power hungary Labour Government for what it is. I am sure you socialists will get a small thrill out od the actiona of some National MP and I will not like it – but firstly it cannot be worse than what has come from the Labour Party Members such as Clark, PSB Benson-Pope Mallard or any one of the other and many incidents that have afflicted this government. Secondly, unless it directly involves John Key, no one will care too much, and thirdly, those slinging the mud can also get dirty in the process as this tactic ends up back-firing.

    Now it is 1 Jan 2007 your biggest concern should the the impact on the polls that the EFA has had and will continue to have. You will need a lot more than a big of mud to even start to close that Gap.

    And of course National can come clean and be up front about the accient neutron bomb, and in the process nulify the impact.

  33. AncientGeek 34

    I think that the most interesting post I saw was one by Dancer in October – “Growing poverty across the Tasman”.

    The critical bit is
    “Australia Fair released figures today showing that the number of Australians in poverty increased from 9.8% to 11.1% of the population between 2003-04 and 2005-06. This is based on the standard measure used extensively in OECD countries, 50% of median income.”.

    Personally that isn’t a measure I’d use. I suspect that it would under-report the problem in a country with wide income differences. However it does provide a point of reference across a number of countries.

    In social terms those are very large jumps in the poverty levels. It is pretty much what we saw in the 80’s and 90’s, and what the US has been demonstrating for a long time. The trickle down political theory as a primary tool of economic development is a crock.

    Why is this an issue for a society? The problem is that talent arises where it wants to in a human population. Anyone who has done any work on population genetics realises very early that humans are probably one of of the least differentiated species in the world. A child can in the absence of debilitating environmental factors can be the perfect genius for the social times, or the worst. Note that what society requires in one generation is not what is required a few generations down the track.

    The biggest single disadvantage that a talented child could have is to have parents living in poverty. This makes it difficult for any child to develop to their potential.

    Probably the second biggest disadvantage is to have a maternal grandmother living in poverty or on drugs at the time she was pregnant. This arises from when eggs are formed in a female fetus – badly developed eggs cause a lot of problems.

    A society that allows poverty in a generation cause problems for many generations afterwards. In the complex societies that we are building, talent is now the main constraining economic factor in any modern society. There simply aren’t enough talented people of the right types in a given generation to drive a societies economic development.

    Incidentally, this is and example of why economics is such a ridiculously narrow discipline. It has difficulty mapping the immediate past, and doesn’t even consider the effects mapped into the generational future. That kind of short term mapping inherent in economic thinking is a pretty effective way to stuff up future generations. A good example is ‘terraforming’ our atmosphere so it eventually could become like Venus – a greenhouse environment that can melt lead.

  34. John 35

    Nice spin Monty, but it won’t work. One man does not a party make. I noticed you dropped English from your list of the important ones that the revelation would have to be about to hurt your Natty friends. Wonder what that is about. Did something on my list make you wonder?

    As for the EFA, I notice all the big talk from those who were going to martyr themselves for the cause are rolling over like puppies. Even DF is complying with the law now. Those who wanted to buy elections may be upset that they no longer can, but they clearly don’t have the courage to fight for what they supposedly believed in. But then it was buying elections that they really believed in, wasn’t it, not free speech.

    Their bluster had very little to do with free speech and a lot more to do with buying more speech than everyone else.

    Fun year ahead. Can’t wait for the Nats to come clean on their dirty laundry like you suggest. Maybe they will come clean with the truth about their real agenda for New Zealand too. I’m not holding my breath.

  35. Kimble 36

    “Incidentally, this is an example of why economics is such a ridiculously narrow discipline.”

    You have GOT to be kidding! Economics is a narrow discipline? Perhaps you mean just macro-economics?

    “The trickle down political theory as a primary tool of economic development is a crock.”

    Yup, the trickle-down theory was an off the cuff statement by one economist in the Reagan years. It isn’t really an economic theory at all and it is used almost exclusively by those who claim to debunk it. It is a straw man.

  36. AncientGeek 37

    Economics doesn’t have particularly good ways of assessing long-term downstream risk at either a macro or a micro level. In fact most of the time economic theory seems to spend a lot of effort trying to avoid looking at the downstream cost of anything with scientific uncertainties at all.

    Obviously this done to simplify the analysis. There are just too many possible to scenarios to look at, and in most cases the downstream risks are unknown (at least for things that haven’t been done before). But it means that economics is inadequete on it’s own to form economic policy with – unless of course the society is static and doesn’t innovate.

    //====

    I said trickle down is a political theory – not economic.. However it was used a *lot* by a lot of the political proponents trying to explain the benefits of removing some of the archaic structural rigidities in various economies.

    I actually approve of a lot of the changes and did at the time. Anyone trying to run an efficient business in the inept socialism of the muldoon era would. But it did get up my nose even in the early stages of those reforms here when the ‘trickle down’ theory in various guises was used. That wasn’t the reason for doing it. It was actually done to help this generation, and there was always going to be a hell of a lot of pain doing it.

    But that was the result of decades of inept government by the nats. They have a tendency never to institute real changes – just to twiddle about with what is there already. So the system usually gets more and more rigid with more and more hacks. Haven’t noticed the modern nat’s being any different – still a serious lack of intelligence or vision. May be adequete for short-term business objects – not adequete for maintaining a good business invironment over the medium term.

  37. Kimble 38

    “still a serious lack of intelligence”

    OK now you are just being stupid.

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