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A campaign launch for the times

Written By: - Date published: 6:56 am, October 27th, 2011 - 135 comments
Categories: brand key, election 2011, labour, national, phil goff - Tags:

Labour’s cleverly wrong-footed Brand Key with a policy-based campaign launch. Key will look out of touch playing messiah at his campaign launch while the economy burns.

Labour’s ads are great. The Tories are in panic mode: they don’t feature Goff enough moans Key; they feature Goff too much cries Clare Robinson; the lighting’s wrong whines Hoots. They’re afraid to take on the message.

Meanwhile, National is completely dependent on Brand Key. He’s on every billboard. Every bit of campaign material. And, although he isn’t in those weird TV ads, his name is mentioned before the party’s in the tail of the ad.

Not the best time, then, from the Tories’ perspective for Brand Key to be unraveling at a rapid rate of knots.

135 comments on “A campaign launch for the times ”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    A devastatingly effective ad campaign from Labour and their advertising partners. What’s even better is that this is just the first salvo of this campaign. There are near-weekly roll outs of new messages and new ads coming.

    Key, English and Brownlee have had their turn. Send them all packing to Hawaii, they like it so much there.

  2. lprent 2

    I liked the ad. Very kiwi. Very straight forward points. I suspect that it is going to be interesting watching John Key avoiding answering the question.

    The national ad was on soon afterwards. Americian negative advertising. What fool thought that was going to have an impact for a kiwi government? It didn’t say anything apart from I am another boring over engineered ad.

  3. Carol 3

    It seemed to me that the MSM, including trotting out the “expert” Clare Robinson on TV3 & checkpoint
    were very quick to follow Key/National’s line in criticising the lack of Goff’s image on billboards. No-one seemed to ask the more obvious question about why National is so reliant on having Key’s image on all their billboards and ads?

    Robinson was also quick to slam the TV ad with Goff in it (slam his absence, slam his presence…!?). She said he was too much in isolation and it didn’t foreground his likeable personality or focus on his leadership, and anyway it’s too much like a Greens’ ad.

    Actually, I think it’s interesting that the TV ad has gone for the very traditional NZ image of the man alone in nature…. the (almost) rugged southern man. Labour has to avoid various danger areas where right wing critics are quick to jump on Labour, and continue their anti-Goff/Labour smear tactics. eg having too dominant a Labour leader, like Clark, who was attacked with the nanny state rhetoric – never mind that NAct has been way more daddy state.

    National/Key’s contradictions and diversions continue to get under-critqued by the MSM – first Key slams Goff’s absence from the billboards, then he says that the election will be largely about policy… then Key tries to resolve the contradiction by saying leadership is important and he’s been a strong leader in difficult times…? Say what!??? Dancing on the head of a pin.

    • The failure to push Goff is an attack line that the right wing will use on every occasion.  They do it to sap morale amongst other things.

      Just to highlight a couple of legends they are going to put up:

      1.They will claim Labour could not get enough people to a launch.  To that I say absolute crap.  At each of the Auckland by elections this term I have been really pleasantly surprised at how many people put their hands up to help.  In 1993 Labour could not hold a proper launch but this time it was really easy.  But their complete absence of knowledge about the state of the Labour Party will not stop them repeating lies.  

      2.This is an admission of defeat by Labour about Goff.  Of course we should have engaged in a “our personality cult is bigger than your personality cult” campaign and we would have lost the election.  Competence and decency will never beat high paid spin.  

      The choice of concentrating on policy will starkly highlight National’s major weakness, their complete absence of policy.

      This may be too high brow for the electorate, time will tell.  But at least the contrast will be stark.  Labour is still in this.

      • Joe Bloggs 3.1.1

        You forgot Meme 3 Greg:

        Labour’s bust – stony-broke – has an absence of cash in the bank – a dearth of donors – not just morally bankrupt but fiscally as well – and simply can’t afford a campaign of any note.

        Prove me wrong – open the books

        [lprent: I seem to remember that is done after the election. Is there a point in this comment somewhere? ]

        • mickysavage

          Ever since Harry Holland was leader Labour has struggled for money.  No secret there.
          Funding this time is fine.  Labour will have a third or so of the money that the nats have but will make it count for just as much through the efforts and work of activists.
          And while we are talking about opening the books, do you think it fair that National uses secret trusts to hide the identities of its major donors?

        • Joe Bloggs

          Lyn, Greg has been advocating for SST and ACT to open their books to prove that there was no funding of Garrett’s role in ACT.

          This is a simple request along the same lines.

          [lprent: Quite different.

          You’re talking about the 2011 election for no other reason than what looks like prurient curiosity and advocating it to be done despite the accounting provisions of electoral law. Whereas if I understand the discussion correctly – he was talking about the accounting for the 2008 election. His reason was a question if a pressure group brought a MP’s place on the list with a donation made through one of the anonymous ‘trust’ channels – which would be at least questionable in the electoral law.

          But that was irrelevant as far as this site is concerned. You didn’t even explain your rather pathetic reasoning so others could examine it openly. To me it just looked like one of those stupid “coded message” comments so beloved by numbskulls like Slater (who appear to be incapable of actually arguing a point using logic) and that I consider are a hallmark of trolls.

          In my view, they cause pointless discussions that are a pain to read because they look like schoolyard wrangling where everyone is talking past each other with no real facts. The only thing that they are useful for is to disrupt discussions.

          But by the time I got to your third comment this morning with a similar irrelevance (about an author no less) – I’d concluded that was exactly what you were after. Which is why you’re now unable to comment here until after the election. ]

        • Hami Shearlie

          Most people agree Labour’s opening address was very smart and very professional. A party with no money couldn’t pay for that! If that Nats have so many funds how come they couldn’t even afford decent lighting for their opening address. John Key looked like a bloodless zombie. It was really quite creepy! Or maybe the producers of their address thought it was a joke video for Halloween? LOL

    • billy fish 3.2

      “never mind that NAct has been way more daddy state.”

      Wrong – not daddy state, more a dodgy uncle state

      • ak 3.2.1

        Colonel Klink with a short mullet springs to mind from the handshake clip – with Joyce-Shultz “I know nuss-ink!” on his shoulder….

    • rjs131 3.3

      yes Goff is a bit of a “southern man” , it reminds the public that he is also a successful farmer so can speak with far more authority on framing/agricultural matters than any national MP and reinforces the fact he is at home in nature

      • Tiger Mountain 3.3.1

        And he can ride a motorcycle, and has owned one for years. Apart from policy detail Phil should needle ShonKey personally in the TV debates-“Hey, I run a farm and am a biker, what have you ever done in the real world… transfering money in the middle of the night and derivatives?”

        • pollywog

          to which Key would reply…”I’ve got 50 mil bitch, suck it !!!”

          • vto

            Yep, the mindless pursuit of MONEY MONEY MONEY…. Kind of sums up the approach of the nats. Money is king.

            Reminds me of that blue stalwart egg David Kirk when commenting recently on the All Blacks RWC push saying “you only get out of this life what you can take for yourself”.

            Surprisingly backwards attitude and approach to life for someone like Kirk. I had always thought that you only get out of life what you give, not take, but there you go – an insight to the mind operations of these types…

        • dave brown

          That shot has been done by Telecom already and it failed. Too contrived and too obvious.
          Should start with a longshot of a motorbike coming over the hill with two figures silhouetted which slowly stops by the lake with Goff looking out at 45degrees to camera. And Goff should have an old oilskin covering his faux officer’s shirt. Expensive pause then murmur “Sell this…fuck”. Then we see them face on and see his passenger is a John Key cuttout posed with Warner Bros smile and snakey handshake and as they disappear over the next rise we see a giant raised finger pinned on Key’s back. NZers will never recover unless they laugh till they hurt.

  4. Salsy 4

    Labour need to find their own media strategist to cast doubt over the over investment/exposure of Key. Im damn sure there would be people out there in that industry that question their apporach. If Key fucks up again, then I can imagine quite the domino effect..

  5. Uturn 5

    That’s a very good message – especially the hole/ladder comment at the end. It adds a personable element without being forced or the over the top “I’m everyone’s mate” attitude. Most people will understand the concept, it’s plain English, no dramatics and the calm approach makes Goff look like a guy that doesn’t panic under pressure. Personally, what I like is that the story happens now, not far off in the future when we become the Ireland of the Pacific, or whatever we were going to be with National’s dreams. The message recognises a problem now, says we have the means to fix it and outlines how. Sound, effective, leadership. I imagine the “fairer tax system…” comment will have some people nervous and can only hope further campaign messages spell out any beneficial aspects in a way those people will accept.

  6. Meanwhile, National is completely dependent on Brand Key.

    Well, they can hardly campaign on their record of increasing public debt and unemployment rates while lowering real wages – the voters don’t seem to like those things, for some reason.

  7. ianmac 7

    Many billboards around here with just Key/Party Vote. Have seen only one with our obscure local candidate sharing the board with Key. Imagine if Key does leak support in big amounts.
    Wonder why MSM doesn’t preface commentary with National boards only featuring Key where Labour feature Policy?

    • Aye, is it an admission that all of their electorate candidates are pillocks?

    • ghostwhowalksnz 7.2

      I have noticed in some areas National have been placing slogans which have some policy detail on their billboards.

      Its gone from “brighter Future” to 4.0 Brighter Future with bells and whistles.

      • DS 7.2.1

        They’ve got their Brighter Future billboard up in the Kaiapoi Red Zone.

        There are also a ridiculous number on the sites of demolished buildings in the parts of the CBD that are open down here.

        Honestly, you couldn’t make this stuff up.

        • Hami Shearlie

          Having their image lined up with wrecked building sites – sounds about right don’t you think? It sort of has a whiff of Chernobyl about it – destruction with lingering danger!

        • Colonial Viper

          Honestly, you couldn’t make this stuff up.

          If you see any blue “rebuilding Christchurch” billboards over a pile of rubble, please take a photo and send it in!

  8. vto 8

    How about this for a negative ad for labour ….

    Flash to each drama that has arisen, Pike River, double-downgrade, Rena, RWC, Chch, poor treasury forecasts, etc and flash up this govt’s reponse to those i.e. Key with a dopey smile and silly wave.

    Highlight the fact that the smile and the wave is all they have got by repeating it continually alongside the actual life dramas that have affected us.

    Attack the very thing that the nats are relying on, namely Key. Alongside the policy ads of course.

    • Enough is Enough 8.1

      I disagree VTO,

      There is so much to campaign on that is positive. What Labour will do to improve the lives of all New Zealanders is a very good campaign tactic.

      As much as we all dislike the PM and what he stands for, the population loves him. Five years of attacking him has only seen his popularity increase.

      Stay positive and stay to message. People should know whether they are better off than they were three years ago. Most will not be. Labour needs to tell them how they will make their lives better over the next decade. Don’t get bogged down attacking a popular PM.

      • vto 8.1.1

        Yes I agree with you. I was just imagining such a series of such ads featuring Mr Silly Smile. Negative advertising never goes down well.

  9. gingercrush 9

    You lot clearly have the same delusions as you did last time when you praised Labour’s pathetic “Don’t Trust Key” ads. That was well not effective. Just like 2008 you’re all running around with ridicolous optimism. Well you’re going to be very disappointed come Novermber 26.

    • Uturn 9.1

      The message in the video doesn’t attack Key, it acknowledges his presence without going any further and then it outlines policy. At no time does it say National this or that. Why shouldn’t supporters be optimistic about policy? What else is there to be optimistic about if not your own plans? If you don’t believe your own plans, why plan them?

      I think you have to accept that some people will not support your party of choice. That’s politics. Confusing politics with religion will end badly for anyone.

      • Deadly_NZ 9.1.1

        “The message in the video doesn’t attack Key” And thats what must be bugging them the most. nothing to attack.

        Oh and will it piss off Slater and Farrar when the only thing they can attack is Phil Goff has not put his face on all bill boards. how long can they keep that fresh? And Key can’t keep harping on about it either, or people may take even more notice of the Labour Ads. And notice the dearth of content in their own National Bill Boards and ads.
        Phils’ not vain like Key and does not need to put his face everywhere.

    • lprent 9.2

      Think hard ginger. Has there ever been a Labour ad that you approve of?

      Or can we just assume that you dislike them all?

      • TightyRighty 9.2.1

        I approved of the photo shopped helen clark billboards. the facade was much better than the truth

        • lprent

          Don’t think that they were (and she said that they weren’t). Just the result of being done over by experts in makeup and dress with a good photographer.

          Lyn does the do-over occasionally when she goes to things like the Qantas awards. After the people along Ponsonby Road do her over, she looks like a much much sleeker version of herself.

          Fortunately my early 90’s suit and unfortunate attitude to large social occasions precludes me from becoming part of the accessory process.

          • Lanthanide

            I’d be interested to see how she ended up with such a pearly white smile in those billboards when it hasn’t even been evident in person.

            • lprent

              I’ve been around Helen for decades when she has been in sweats after gym on a sunday to when she has been dressed up for a performance on the stage for conference or leader debates.

              While I don’t tend to notice appearance, I can usually tell when she’d been to the dentist recently. For that matter I could tell when my grandmother had been there for the same reason. Non-smokers can get a hell of a cosmetic face lift to their teeth if they’re willing to pay for it and are willing to sit around waiting for the paintstripper in their mouths to work.

              What I do find rather strange and always have, is why anyone is that interested in peoples appearance. The obsessional nature of some people on the issue of Helen’s appearance was and is more a reflection on their ability to focus on the trivial.

              • TightyRighty

                lprent, while your loyalty is touching, i’ve dated several art directors / proffesional re-touchers. When they all say it’s shoop de wooped, you can bet your life it’s shoop de wooped. I don’t really have a problem with it, as i said, i approved for shallow and facetious reasons. it gives lie to the maxim you can’t polish a turd.

              • Jum


                I went to a Hunua National Party election meeting in 2008. John Key made special mention of Helen Clark’s appearance in a nasty way. The National supporters clapped and laughed.

                Above all else this made it obvious to me that the ‘nice’ Mr Key is a manipulative liar and a conman and nothing he has said since has made me think otherwise.

                The supporters of John Key believe in shallow things; they voted for non-sense and we have had to live with it – I hope no more after 26 November 2011.

    • Clint 9.3

      Very very disappointed more like it 🙂

  10. Blue 10

    I like the TV ads, and I think it’s fine to have the billboards focus purely on policy. The Greens do it every election.

    But I would question the decision not to have a campaign launch. Labour needs all the publicity it can get, and turning down one of the only times our reluctant MSM actually have to pay attention to them is wasting an opportunity.

    It smells like whoever is running Labour’s campaign has bought the ‘Goff can’t win’ bullshit the right has been spouting. If that’s the case, I would say to them that there is nothing wrong with Phil, and voters can and will like him when you give them a chance. He can go head to head with Key on personality and win. It’s just that people will like them for different reasons.

    And if you try to hide Phil, it’s not going to work. Voters have to like him if they’re going to vote Labour. They won’t just vote on policy, I think it’s been demonstrated already that voters like Labour’s policy more. But they aren’t leading in the polls because Labour hasn’t done enough to sell people on Phil’s leadership abilities.

    • Lanthanide 10.1

      They’re replacing the campaign launch with a policy launch. Meanwhile National are going to have a campaign launch where all the party faithful get together in a room and clap as Rockstar Key crosses the stage.

      Sort of sums the contrast between the parties quite well, I think.

      • Blue 10.1.1

        It is basically Labour saying they have no confidence in Phil Goff.

        I think it is incredibly unfair, and I’m offended on Phil’s behalf.

        Just when Labour were starting to have some luck, they’ve shot themselves in the foot again by giving Phil some negative headlines and throwing John Key a lifeline.

      • Deadly_NZ 10.1.2

        And as they see the aged worn down un photo shopped old man, they will call security and chuck him out hahaha .

    • Puddleglum 10.2

      Hi Blue,

      You may be right, although I’m not sure that a campaign launch (with the leader standing behind a lecturn addressing the party faithful) is the best way to present Goff to the voters.

      He is probably already seen too often in contrived, formal settings. 

  11. randal 11

    most of nationals billboards around here are behind trees.
    err umm, does that make them shady?

    • jaymam 11.1

      There’s a fake plastic tree attached to to one of ACT’s billboards in Epsom.
      A fake tree for a party of fakes?

      • Hami Shearlie 11.1.1

        That’s not a fake plastic tree – that’s John Banks ! – he must have got stuck there after installing the sign – you’re confused because of all the formaldehyde that John has been consuming lately -otherwise known as teeth whitening, hair dye and botox – same difference – all fake!

  12. queenstfarmer 12

    Good ad, as far as such ads go (all taxpayer-funded political ads generally being abhorrent). If Labour can runs ads against National as effectively as Len Brown did against John Banks, they will get a real boost.

  13. first time caller 13

    You’ve just got to check out Whaleoil’s parody, sorry guys it’s just too funny.

    • Hanswurst 13.1

      Yes, I can imagine you might be very proud of coming up with that level of “humour” if you were, say, the guy who wrote Key’s lines for David Letterman.

    • thejackal 13.2

      That’s pathetic! Even for Slater.

      What I find interesting is that National has heaps more advertising, around four to one to Labour hoardings. I guess a party without any plan and regurgitated policies that have already failed has to rely on subliminal messaging… What a waste of money.

  14. Afewknowthetruth 14

    Labour ‘Not for sale’.

    Of course not. Labour was bought and paid for by global corporations and money-lenders decades ago. And that applies to Phil Goff in particular. He has a long history of supporting everything that is bad for the long term welfare of NZers -free trade deals, unsustainable housing and shopping mall developments, covering farmland in conctrete and asphalt and unsustainable farming practices on the land that does not get destroyed by urban development, military involvement overseas, consumption of the future in order to prop up the present.

    Whilst it possible Labour will be the dominant party in the next government we certainly cannot look to Labour as ‘saviours’ of NZ when the party is lead by a clown and all senior party members are either totally ignorant of all the important issues of the times or have decided to keep silent about them.

    Under the last Labour government everything that actually matters in the long term got rapidly worse, and that would undoubtedly be the case if Labour were returned to office.

    The only matters of much interest are:

    1. Will the next phase of the implosion of the globalised economic system occur before the election or after it?

    2. Will the implosion of the globalised economic system come fast enough to prevent the industrialism that Labour advocates rendering the Earth largely uninhabitable by mid-century?

    • King Kong 14.1

      You are mental.

      [lprent: It usually pays to say why that something is your opinion. Otherwise I start treating such comments as pointless abuse and that is something that we don’t tolerate because it starts idiotic flamewars.. ]

      • Tiger Mountain 14.1.1

        Are you indulging in some self criticism and reflection here King Dong? Otherwise your comment makes no sense.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 14.2

      Cassandra (AFKTT) we’ve already established that you don’t believe these economic fantasies of yours, and when challenged, you shift the goalposts and run into a Gish gallop. Didn’t you learn anything from your recent encounter with Richard?

    • Jenny 14.3

      Having no answers to the coming economic collapse, and fearful of having to rule in a coalition that would require making concessions to their left which would put them on a collision course with the lightly taxed financiers and other powerful corporates and polluters, Labour chooses to join with their neo-liberal partner National in imposing austerity.


      • Jenny 14.3.1

        For some reason Stuff.co.nz has chosen to alter the link that I inserted in my above comment. Originally the link went to Stuff’s report on Labour’s plans to attack the pension, Stuff have since diverted the link to a later report on how Key will defend it.

        I have tried to find the report that the link, 5862270/Labour-would-lift-retirement-age, originally went to.

        However it seems to have been removed from the Stuff.co.nz website.

  15. Joe Bloggs 15

    Poor Phil – he looks so lonely on that riverbank, out there in the wilderness by himself.

    Doesn’t he have any playmates in the Labour caucus?

    [lprent: You’re starting to trigger my anti-troll instincts with short meaningless playground comments with no actual content. I’m less tolerant than usual at present because this project is irritating me. Assess the risk. ]

    • TightyRighty 15.1

      He’s doing a mea culpa a la paul reynolds at telecom for his pathetic existence. fancam over at WO hit the nail on the head


    • Draco T Bastard 15.2

      Ah, the RWNJs are buying into the bought and paid for spin.

      • TightyRighty 15.2.1

        Yea you labour bought and paid for their spin and someone of above average intelligence (your average nat voter) noticed the similarities between the two phils. it hardly takes a genius to link two ads featuring two guys named phil besides two rivers, apologising for their organisations performance.

        • Draco T Bastard

          1.) I’m not Labour
          2.) The average IQ for nat voters is below the human average
          3.) The bought and paid for spin was the BS about Phil looking lonely on the ad that you’ve taken hook, line and sinker

          • TightyRighty

            I don’t think he looks lonely, I think he looks like phil reynolds from telecom after the whole xt network outage debacle. It’s you who has bought the spin about the spin that you are trying to spin into something that doesn’t look like spin.

            The IQ for people who earn more money than average wage, ie the Nats target audience, is higher than the labour demographic. therefore labour voters are relatively more stupid than national voters and since they make up the largest proportion of voters on the left of the political spectrum the left is on average stupider than voters on the right of the spectrum.

            • McFlock

              “The IQ for people who earn more money than average wage, ie the Nats target audience, ”

              [… yadda yadda]

              Lol. Even if everything you said were correct rather than tory wank, given that the median wage is substantially less than the average (mean) wage (check out the tables on statsNZ) then National are actually “targeting” a minority of the population and still expecting to govern. Which is stupid.
              And how does your concept of labour targeting below average wage earners match the common meme of labour being a bunch of upper middle class liberals? If being right-wing were really a function of intelligence, you would have thought of some way to troll cooperatively with other tories, rather than falling over each other.

              In my experience, the degree to which someone is right wing usually seems to be a function of their inability to empathise with other human beings and a likelihood of consistently making stupid errors or comments.

              • TightyRighty

                median wage? you’re buying into CV”s crap on this subject.

                A minority of the population and still kicking ass in the polls. must be doing a wonderful job then?

                I never claimed that labour is the party for upper middle class liberals, it’s just their most vocal proponents usually are of that ilk. I thought we on the right had a herd mentality according to lefty gospel? only the left of course is allowed to have dissenting opinions within it’s circle of the venn diagram.

                In your experience I’m sure you’ve run around chanting like mickey, cv et al about RWNJ’s buying the C/T line and how tories don’t care. The problem is that you don’t understand we actually do care, but are usually to busy leading a fulfilling and prosperous life to show much we care as much as caring lefties who have nothing better to do. It’s this assumed moral superiority that makes most tories laugh at people like yourselves. You actually have very little idea but shroud what you do have in emotive language that is dripping in right-thinking terms that only makes you sound and appear downright stupid, but your too smug to notice.

                In the meantime, great to see labour not focussing on presidential style campaigns? oh wait, it’s only half of one. almost every post today by the standard or red alert is attacking john key the man. guess actions speak louder than words. Classic though that you’ve got nothing and no one to big up while you try and bring down, in grant roberstons own words, an extremely popular prime minister. tools.

                • McFlock

                  I didn’t invent the concept of median wage, nor did CV. Nor even did statsNZ. If the Nats seriously are targeting a minority of the population and still getting a majority in the polls, then their targeting sucks.

                  To be more specific, in my experience, most tories I’ve met – and I have had to mix with a few – the father “right” they are the more likely they are to A) behave in just plain wrong ways as an individual (e.g. sleazing around, laughing at homeless people, or shafting colleagues); and/or B) just be a fucking moron.
                  I can’t speak for labour – i’m not one of their voters let alone a member. But I’m sure if National eventuially release some policy Labour will address it.

            • Draco T Bastard

              I think he looks like phil reynolds…

              See, this is you proving the point that Nat voters are stupid. It’s Paul Reynolds you fuckwit.

              BTW, being rich != being intelligent. What it really means is that people who are rich are more willing to rip everybody else off (only way to get rich is through theft) this is due to their psychopathy.

              • Bored

                Nah Daddy paid for them to go to the right school to meet the right people and then got them into the family law business….

              • TightyRighty

                so it is. i just see two doofuses on tv and associate them. thanks draco. names begin with p blah blah

                only way to get rich is through theft? and with that you win the prize for stupidest thing i’ve encountered today. i’ve had to deal with mcdonalds staff, hutt hospital receptionists, those wonderful kids at riding for the disabled and a labour party activist. that’s how low on the food chain you are draco

                • McFlock

                  No mirrors anywhere, then?

                • thejackal


                  only way to get rich is through theft? and with that you win the prize for stupidest thing i’ve encountered today.

                  Unfortunately Draco T Bastard is correct. The most common way to get rich in New Zealand these days is to steal wealth from others. It is very uncommon for somebody to become wealthy from their own hard work. It’s more likely that you will just work harder to make the boss richer. New Zealander’s have realized that they’re not properly rewarded for their efforts or skill level, and are leaving in droves.

                  High unemployment and a low wage economy growing inequality while the rich make record profits, property speculation (amongst other things) creating very low home ownership and no brighter future creating the highest youth suicide rate in the OECD are just a few of the repercussions of the broken system.

                  Such a dysfunctional dynamic rewards the corrupt with other peoples wealth.

                  • Descendant Of Smith

                    I assuming of course Tighty that you don’t fit the IQ demographic for National. Must be just as well you have money so you can feel included.

                    The Phil Reynolds thing takes me back to the days when you didn’t know the difference between principle and principal and had no idea what a homophone was.

                    The many bail out the few

                    Your little rant against McDonald staff, etc shows shows your contempt for your fellow citizens and your implication (despite prefacing with wonderful as some sort of sop ) that disabled kids are low on the food chain re-enforces that.

                    Underneath your veneer of civilization you do have quite a nasty, abusive streak don’t you.

        • Puddleglum

          He’s doing a mea culpa a la paul reynolds at telecom

          similarities between the two phils.”

          I think he looks like phil reynolds from telecom


  16. Tania 16

    I went and checked out the parody at whale oil. Pathetic really, is that all they have. It reminds me of joe bloggs comment above. Who is clutching at straws? Personally I’m tired of the fantastical lies and rude insults National supporters trot out. Very few of them have anything akin to facts. I guess the trickle down affect is relevant in some aspects. If their messiah lies It must be okay for them to do so. I like Labours advert, it’s to the point and non fussy.

  17. Lanthanide 17

    I have to say, I don’t particularly like the ad. I’d give it a 6/10 or so.

    The message is fine, I just don’t like the delivery or the technical aspects. The lighting isn’t great. The sound is kind of funny and over-processed (this may sound fine on a TV though). I don’t like all the constant jump-cuts, especially when some of them seem kind of pointless – reminds me of trendy youtube videos made by tweens.

    It does look like Goff is out all by himself at the side of a lake somewhere. It would be good if they had a subtitle at the bottom saying where he was “Lake Benmore, site of Benmore power station, South Canterbury”.

    • pollywog 17.1

      Yeah i woulda had a young family camping in the background with some kids skimming stones and making ripples in the water or flying kites…

  18. Peter 18

    Key’s omnipresence for whatever reason brings up images of Saddam Hussein. Next we will have a statue of Key or perhaps a shrine.

    • Hami Shearlie 18.1

      Maybe Bronagh can get ideas for the shrine from JeLan Brash – remember her shrine to Don on facelift? LOL

  19. Kty 19

    Latest results for google idiot stakes.

    John Key is an idiot 3,800,000 results

    Phil Goff is an idiot 1, 600,000 results

    Looks like the johny boy is racing to the finishing line in the Google Idiot stakes at a crashing pace.

    Does this mean that National need a locksmith so they can get a new idiot proof Key?

  20. giovani 20

    National = A cult of personality or a right wing dictatorship.

    No thanks.

  21. Afewknowthetruth 21


    ‘Cassandra (AFKTT)’

    Well described. As you presumably know, Cassandra had the gift of foresight and the curse of not being believed. Cassandra foretold the future and those who heard the truth ran from it.

    ‘Didn’t you learn anything from your recent encounter with Richard?’

    Not really. I already knew Richard was uninformed.

    I already knew that GDP is a false measure of economic activity and is manipulated by governments to make economic performace look better than it really is. (Presumably, the worse things get, the more governments will manipulate GDP figures. Hence my reluctance to make any bet on GDP as such.)

    I got confirmation that discussion on TS really fairly futile because people hang on desperately to false beliefs and do not follow up links that provide them with factual information (as I wrote extensively about in TEW).

    As for the future of NZ, I am 100% certain it will be in a far worse state by the end of 2013 than it is now – economically, socially, environmentally- which ever party gians office, and that the recent Treasury forecasts for economic activity will be have been proven to have been ‘a mile’ from reality. The worsening of every that matters simply continues the historical trend which has prevailed since the 1960s.

    Here are three irrefutable facts for you to ponder:

    1. Every day that passes the global economic system get closer to the point of complete implosion because it has become increasing dependent on energy resources that have declining EROEI and mineral resources that are at or past peak.

    2. Every day that passes the bankers’ Ponzi scheme becomes more unsustainable because the compound interest compunds on previous compound interest to the point of ‘going exponential’ (it always was, of course, but in the early stages did not give the appearance of exponentiality).

    3. Every day that the global economic system continues to function the global environment gets pushed closer to systemic collapse via abrupt climate change, acidification of the oceans, disruption of the ozone system, loss of soil, loss of biodiversity, overpopulation and overconsumption etc.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 21.1

      “Complete implosion”? define in real terms.
      “Systemic collapse” you can’t define that either, it’s a vague amorphous concept like “the number of commercial rental properties in the town where I live.” Nature is more resilient than you think.
      Yes, the Greenhouse Effect means that changes are being made in the energy economy, and personally I doubt those changes are happening fast enough to mitigate the problem, and there will be massive losses as a result. There will also be opportunities.
      So your “irrefutable facts” turn out to be “Cassandra’s interpretation of the situation”. Yes she predicted disaster, but notice that we’re having this conversation some years after her death, and look, life managed to go on…

      • Draco T Bastard 21.1.1

        “Complete implosion”? define in real terms.

        A sudden (in terms of an empire that’s 5 centuries old), unstoppable and destructive contraction of the present monetary system.

        “Systemic collapse” you can’t define that either, it’s a vague amorphous concept…

        Um, no, really it isn’t. Take away enough of any system (and the ecology is a system) and it’ll stop working. Present extinction rate is 1000 times higher than normal. Sooner or later the ecology will start to break down, if it isn’t already, not long after that it’ll stop working (ie, stop being able to support the lifeforms presently on the planet) and then we’ll have the worlds first, and possibly only, Anthropogenic Extinction Level Event.

        Nature is more resilient than you think.

        No, it isn’t. Life will continue afterwards it’s just a question of whether there will be anything larger than bacteria and viruses.

        Yes, the Greenhouse Effect means that changes are being made in the energy economy, and personally I doubt those changes are happening fast enough to mitigate the problem,

        Um, what?

        and there will be massive losses as a result. There will also be opportunities.

        And then the psychopathy shines through. The “losses” will be measured in death, not money.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          “A sudden (in terms of an empire that’s 5 centuries old), unstoppable and destructive contraction of the present monetary system.” So, now an implosion is a contraction. Whoosh, watch those goalposts move. Cassandra’s year zero alarmism exposed as more hot air.

          Your source for the “1,000 times higher than normal” is the Daily Telegraph? Excuse me? Their source is the home page of the organisation they quote, not any kind of peer-reviewed paper. However, http://www.jstor.org/pss/10.1086/317005 points out (admittedly from 2001 so there may be more current thinking) that historic extinction rates are impossible to measure.
          The Wikipedia article on the Gaia hypothesis says: “This ecological hypothesis has also inspired analogies and various interpretations in social sciences, politics, and religion under a vague philosophy and movement.” So which are you?

          Perhaps optimism makes me a psychopath, who can tell? Certainly not you, unless you’re that guy who can read minds, in which case I suggest you contact James Randi.

          And yes, nature is more resilient than you (and people much better informed than you) think. http://www.sciencemag.org/content/333/6045/1024

          • Draco T Bastard

            So, now an implosion is a contraction.

            An implosion has always been a contraction you moron.

            Excuse me?

            No, I don’t excuse ignorance and you’re showing a hell of a lot if it.

            The Wikipedia article on the Gaia hypothesis says: “This ecological hypothesis has also inspired analogies and various interpretations in social sciences, politics, and religion under a vague philosophy and movement.” So which are you?

            Ad Hominem.

            Perhaps optimism makes me a psychopath,

            It wasn’t optimism that you showed but a willingness to profit through others suffering.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              “An implosion has always been a contraction you moron.”

              I thought it was only right wing nut jobs who redefine words to suit themselves.
              Implosion: the act of imploding; a bursting inward (opposed to explosion).
              Contract: to draw together or into smaller compass…

              You see? One means getting smaller the other means “a bursting inwards”. You can argue that the two concept are interchangeable if you like, but that really would be moronic.

              “Willingness to profit through others suffering” you see what you want to see, I said nothing of the sort.

      • Afewknowthetruth 21.1.2


        Complete implosion of the globalised economic system could be defined as the point at which none of it functions. However, the implosion would start to have a marked effect once international trade has shrunk by as little as 5% for a period of a few months. Interestingly, that point was nearly reached in late 2008, when the Baltic Dry Index fell by around 90% for a few weeks, following the spike in oil prices: hence the desperate attempts to bail out numerous failed institutions and generate new lines of credit.

        As far as currencies are concerned we could regard the point of implosion as the moment when faith is lost in the US dollar, the so-called reserve currency. That point is not far off. The US has already had its credit rating cut and another cut is coming soon. When we measure the purchasing power of the US dollar against gold it has devalued to approximaetely 1/7th of its value just a decade ago. i.e. gold has risen from around $250 an ounce to over $1700 ($1900 a few weeks ago, but the price obviously got manipulated downwards to halt the panic that was underway). Note that in the race to the bottom, the US is ahead of NZ; hence the NZ dollar has ‘risen’ from the low point of 42 cents US to around 80 cents US.

        Another good measure of the point of implosion is to look at share market indexes. The Nikkei peaked at 40,000 and is currently at under 9,000, in numerical terms less than 1/4 its former value but when we take inflation into account it stands at below 10% of peak value. The Dow was around 10,000 to 12,000 in the late 1990s. Guess where it is now? 10,000 to 12,000, implying a drop in real terms of at least 60% (much more when measured against gold or silver, of course). The implosion point would be when TPTB decide to stop propping up share markets and let them fall to their natural level. i.e. for the Dow probably initially around 5,000, but eventually zero, since industrialism has no long term future.

        As for environmental collapse, that is easy to define: wiidespread death of organisms normally living in a particular ecological niche.

        I would imagine Texas must be close to that point after 12 months of drought:


        But of much greater concern globally is the acifification of the oceans; if the pH is sufficiently depressed by the CO2 being pumped into the atmosphere by industrial activity, orgamisms at the base of the food chain will simply stop living and take most of the present species straight down the path to extinction with them, leaving the ocean home to bacteria and jellyfish etc.

        Another good indicator of environmetal collapse is the ice cover of the Arctic Sea. Although 2011 was not quite the lowest ever, the trend is very clear. And triggering positive feedbacks would soon see all the ice on Greenland gone and substanatial sea level rise that would inundate nemerous population centres around the word. Loss of thr West Antarctic icesheet (now underway) would be similalrly catstrophic.

        The point is. there is not one indicator that is showing any indication of improvement: everywhere you look all the things that matter are getting rapidly worse.

        By the way, be careful who you vote for:


        • One Anonymous Bloke

          The Chinese are already calling for a new reserve currency. http://rt.com/news/stocks-economy-usa-asia/ Perhaps they don’t share your alarm at the prospect…
          Your knowledge of Climatology is more robust than your knowledge of economics, I see.
          There are a number of metrics including sea-ice cover, that strongly suggest that IPCC AR4 had a conservative bias, in that conditions will deteriorate quicker than anticipated. Nonetheless, I think I’m going to take my cues from Gavin Schmidt and James Hansen. When they say we’re fucked, I still won’t take you seriously.
          In short: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7RIgs3eygo

          • Afewknowthetruth


            ‘I’m going to take my cues from Gavin Schmidt and James Hansen. When they say we’re fucked, I still won’t take you seriously.’

            Bravado is a poor substitute for knowledge and preparation.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Who said anything about being ill-informed or ill-prepared? Oh, that’s right, you. Remind me how your relentless Chicken Little act alleviates either.

      • Puddleglum 21.1.3

        Yes she predicted disaster, but notice that we’re having this conversation some years after her death, and look, life managed to go on…

        Cassandra’s prediction referred to the Trojan Horse and that it should not be brought into the city otherwise Troy would be lost. We’re talking legends but, in legend, her prediction was entirely accurate.

        Her prediction did not refer to the devastation of the earth.

  22. great campaign so far – well done Labour strategists

  23. So what age is Labour raising the retirement age too?

  24. Repeated from open mike.

    Wow big call
    Labour is going to put up the age of retirement albeit gradually.  Totally responsible but a big call politically.  It will show that Key is being totally irresponsible in gutting the Cullen Fund and Kiwisaver AND refusing to put the age up.
    Brave, brave campaigning.

    • Pete 24.1

      It’s earned the approval of Duncan Garner – a sure sign of some political jujitsu.

      As someone who is 32 years old and will be 55 in 2033 when the eligibility age has finished increasing, I am pleased that this is being addressed so the cupboard won’t be bare when I hit 67. And it gives me enough forewarning to plan my retirement if I want to do it before 67.

    • Lanthanide 24.2

      Yes, this is very gutsy of them.

      This and other policies should show a clear difference between Labour and National. Labour has policies.

      Whether you agree with those policies or not, it is clear that they’re much more up to the job of running the country than National are.

    • marty mars 24.3

      What are your views on the inequality facing tangata whenua whilst saving (or trying to) for retirement, and after retirement. Should any political party address this inequality, which is increased when the retirement age is increased because of reduced life expectancy for tangata whenua. How does this fit with the promises in the treaty, or with any political party attempting to govern.

      I know you are concerned about the boomer bulge greg but what about the inequality.

    • queenstfarmer 24.4

      It is hardly “irresponsible” to put an end to borrowing-to-“invest” in the Cullen Fund. Ruling out putting up the age was silly though.

      • NickS 24.4.1

        Oh please, the only reason they stopped investing in the Cullen Fund is so they could free up enough money to make revenue negative tax cuts, which benefited only a small percentage of the population in relation to the GST rise. Which they ended up borrowing for anyhow…

        But do we see them rescinding those tax cuts, despite the “irresponsible borrowing” as you put it? No we don’t, which conveniently also makes you a disingenuous hypocrite.

    • Uturn 24.5

      Judging by some of the comments at that link, Labour will certainly capture the attention of people. It’s a shame the discussion has already turned to who is a bludger and who isn’t though – an opportunity for Labour to show some unifying leadership.

  25. gobsmacked 25

    At 3 pm today Labour will have the most headline-grabbing campaign launch in many years.

    People may or may not agree with tackling Superannuation – the ultimate sacred cow – but it’s certainly going to make a much bigger splash than balloons and bunting ever could.

    FWIW, it goes a long way to getting my vote back. I don’t ask for perfect policy, I just want Labour to look like they’re taking the fight to the Nats – to show that they are not “sleepwalking to defeat”.

    Labour will get an avalanche of coverage for this, and now we’ll see what John Key’s “promises” are made of …

  26. Craig Y 26

    And here’s my analysis of the reason why LGBT voters should support capital gains tax over asset sales:

    • Puddleglum 26.1

      A thoughtful piece Craig Y.

      It’s amazing how easily stereotypes (in this case, the ‘pink dollar’) form and blur the vision. 

      • \Craig 26.1.1

        I don’t think it was a ‘stereotype,’ so much as a hasty conclusion from unrepresentative data.

        Outside the United States, most gay men realise that to effectively combat the HIV/AIDS epidemic, we need a functional public health system and comprehensive welfare state, and in order to have one, we need it to be properly funded. State asset sales have a proven track record of failure, due largely to their hamfisted disposal and discounted, inadequate valuation. On the other hand, capital gains tax will raise the neccessary revenue without foregone dividends.

        (As for lesbians, women are more inclined to vote for the retention of public services both here and in the United Kingdom).

        I’m also warning LGBT communities about the consequences of welfare retrenchment and privatisation (eg US style ‘faith based initiatives’ and their danger to impoverished and beneficiary members of our communities) as well as the risks of increased LGBT youth homelessness. I have one on the destruction of public service capacity coming up next…

        Thanks, Puddleglum. Good to know that my work is appreciated.

  27. So the greens and national billboards are being targeted in chch? does this say anything about the election results????

    • NickS 27.1


      Oh wait, you used four fucking question marks when only one would do, thus indicating you’re a complete idiot, further buttressed by extrapolating the situation in CHCH nation level, when there are many annoyed with National’s glacial slowness on earthquake recovering that isn’t a nation wide thing…

      Now fuck off back to your soapbox unless you’re willing to show some thinking skills, because we’re full up in the thoughtless wonder department here with the 9/11 truthers and conspiracy nuts.

    • Puddleglum 27.2

      A vandalised Labour sign was replaced in my street (in Christchurch) and two candidate billboards (for the Ilam and Te Tai Tonga Labour candidates) have been removed from in front of Antonio house in Riccarton Road (the Ilam one had been on the ground for a while).

  28. Anthony 28

    Good ad, music makes it sound a bit like a skit though is my only criticism.

  29. Talking about campaigns and Party supporters, here’s an instance where Nat-activists have shot themselves in the foot: http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2011/10/27/two-lost-votes-for-the-nats/

    I’ve sent an email to the local “Hutt News”, in case they want to run a story on this incident. I think it’s fairly obvious who is responsible…

    • Draco T Bastard 29.1

      I’ve been noticing the same around where I am. Labour and Greens billboards are graffitied but the National ones aren’t. Kinda gives the perpetrator(s) away and shows them as the low-life criminals that they are.

  30. infused 30

    As if you can plaster Goff on anything. No one likes him. Good try though. This is going to be fun.

    • thejackal 30.1

      Phil Goff just smashed John Key into dust on Close Up. Perhaps National’s strategists should reassess him not fronting up for debates… a PM shouldn’t hide away like a little scared mouse, which is what he’s doing.

      There are plenty of people who like Phil Goff infused… But I would assume that many more will be voting for Labour because they don’t like John Key and his lies, or the fact that National was governing New Zealand into a pile of rubble.

      • ianmac 30.1.1

        Yes Interesting that. Phil was on re super age. John was invited but wanted to send Bill instead. TV1 said no. Must Leader with Leader so Phil had it all to himself pointing out that a couple of days ago John was laughing at Phil for “hiding in the shadows”. (Billboards.)
        “Now who is hiding?” said Phil. He made a good fist of explaining his policy.
        Worth a look:

    • Jum 30.2


      I like Phil Goff.

      But, and more importantly, I have respect for him. I have no respect for Key the conman and joker – it’s quite frankly disgusting how he, the prime minister of New Zealand can behave the way he does.

    • fmacskasy 30.3

      Infused: I want Goff’s policies – not to date him.

      If it’s a popularity contest, I’d vote for Lucy Lawless.

      Grown-ups vote for party policies cos in the end, that’s what will affect our country’s future as well as our wallets.

  31. burt 31

    Means tested Super… how Tory is that !

    • Colonial Viper 31.1

      The Tory version of means testing is that only the rich get it.

      • burt 31.1.1

        That depends how you define ‘it’ CV.

        Either you completely misunderstand the association of means testing with Tory governments or you know piss all about anything that’s not your glorious Labour party.

        Who last introduced means tested Super in NZ CV ?

        edit: CV, This might help:

        • Jum


          who sold super – muldoon.

          who stopped super even though it and ACC saved NAct from complete annihilation this term – Key

          distraction 101 – go away little man.

          • burt

            Please Jum, It’s not about you. This is for CV’s benefit.

            • Jum

              burt, this is all about the election and what world I want for my children – personalities don’t come into it.

              Future thinking does. NActU does not have that. It is run on the lines of greed and selfish arrogance. Core government meaning the rich get all they want; the poor don’t even get what they need.

              I’ll repeat – little men sell themselves for 30 pieces of gold. Key did.

              If Colonial Viper wants me to butt out of this debate, he will tell me. I would like to have known Colonial Viper. He’s a good person.

  32. Chris 32

    Hey be fair the poor get it sometimes they just have to be treated like bludgers when they get it.

    When the rich get it it is good tax planning.

    Edit: Meant to be a reply to Colonial at 31.1

  33. Jum 33

    Clare Robinson was trotted in at the 2008 election; she wants National in. She is happy to have our children’s children sold down the river for a few baubles.

    She pops up when lies and obfuscations are required. On Q and A the most objective political commentators have been sent on their way when they didn’t push the personality crap or the NAct policies as being better than Labour/Progressive/Green. TVNZ is a disgrace when it comes to objective reporting and interviewing, which is all I have ever wanted in a programme which should be informing me intelligently and objectively so that I can also make an informed choice come election time. Jon Johansen isn’t too bad but do you notice the looks he gets from Paul Holmes if he’s not pushing the NAct party lines. Disgraceful. It’s like living in an authoritarian state.

    Her manner against Helen Clark was just the same sort of crap.

    You saw her reacting to both Helen Clark in 2008 whose face was on the billboards and Robinson rubbished that and now Goff is saying policy on the bill boards and she’s rubbishing that – what a con game she’s playing.

    Piss off Robinson; you’re a disgrace to New Zealand’s image of academic gravitas.

    • aj 33.1

      Hear hear.

    • burt 33.2


      You saw her reacting to both Helen Clark in 2008 whose face was on the billboards…

      With all due respect to your opinion of Helen Clark, if the billboards were her face then she was getting younger and younger each election.

      Look I understand that a little photo-shopping is pretty much mandatory for a billboard size poster of anyone. We all have imperfections we would rather not have shown in that scale. But come on, I’m picking most people would have had at least have a momentary double take the first time they spotted the 2008 billboard.

  34. randal 34

    when the whip comes down Labour is going to take this one out.
    even the average kiwi voter can see that national are inept.
    all right going forward so to speak but no good on defence.
    kiws are going to vote this one on what has to be done and only Labour has any answers and they can get the money on better terms.

  35. burt 35

    they can get the money on better terms? How so ?

  36. \Craig 36

    Someone needs to critically analyse and demonstrate Key’s spinwork, though. I’d recommend Wayne Hope at AUT.

    • Hami Shearlie 36.1

      With the way John Key behaves, wouldn’t Bob Hope be more appropriate? I know he’s dead, but so is National’s conscience!

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