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An ex-insider rating of our politicians

Written By: - Date published: 1:11 pm, December 23rd, 2018 - 26 comments
Categories: labour, Politics, uncategorized - Tags:

MSM and blogsters are in an orgy of “rating” and marking politicians at the moment. It seems to be based on headlines, fuck ups or not fuck ups and what those inside the Beltway deemed news.

It’s not new of course. Trans-Tasman sold its ratings yearly, until they went bust last year. Every year, when I was an MP almost without exception I would be among the lowest ranked. For the Trans-Tasman, I wasn’t exciting enough, too fixated on my union beliefs, probably too old and “not ministerial” material.

I was usually in good company with “ethnic” MPs, whose contribution was seen in the context of the received wisdom of a bunch of old white guys.

Every year, after this, I would try to do better. Pushing issues like minimum wage, workers’ rights, migrant worker abuse ; asking oral and written questions, putting up members bills around minimum redundancy, triangular employment and minimum wage for contractors. And working hard in the Tory held electorates of the North Shore. I did work on Labour’s policy on Fair Pay Agreements, Immigration and Transport, which is still evident and coming to fruition today.

So when I rank politicians, I will always rank them on their commitment to working peoples’ values, to the fundamental rights of working people to a fair deal, to international rights to join a union and organise.

In my year in review for working people will be quite different to that of the MSM. We’ve made real progress ; whether it be getting the right to meals & rest breaks, increasing minimum wage, paying Living Wage to government workers, paying low income workers in support services better or improving the rights to collective bargaining.

My politicians of the year are the obvious ; but I’m making a special mention of Marja Lubeck, Labour List MP for Rodney. who has picked up the mantle of the union caucus and connection with Labour affiliates, who has unashamedly stood for workers’ rights in all the debates, who slaves away in a blue area in Rodney and deserves recognition for her commitment.Well done Marja :

PS : I have no regrets. It was a privilege to represent the workers wing of our party.  Much to learn ; but number one :  keep on organising.


26 comments on “An ex-insider rating of our politicians ”

  1. Stephen 1

    Thanks for recognising the work Marja does. Marja is highly visible in one of the bluest of blue electorates, and is a hard worker and rising star in the Labour caucus. Her passion for looking after workers rights is palpable.

  2. patricia bremner 2

    Thanks Darien, Thanks for your good work. Yes, the ratings by some in MSM have been mealy mouthed and grudging.
    Also the side stories have facts missing or twisted to suit the writer, A few write fairly, and that sounds like high praise after some bitter prose.
    After a while I found it hard to read some contributors, so evident was their bile.
    So thanks again for an opportunity to say the Coalition has done well, and promises to do more in 2019 2020.
    It has been pleasurable watching hitherto smug MSM members lose confidence, and for some voices to return.
    The taxation banking and budget reforms need to underpin the current good work.

  3. Sacha 3

    Darien, please do list more than one politician. They are not necessarily ‘obvious’ to all of us.

    • Tuppence Shrewsbury 3.1

      This is one of the reasons trans-Tasman rated Darien so low every year. Lots of good intentions but without the hard work and follow through to be a truly capable minister

    • Darien Fenton 3.2

      I mean they are obvious because of course I am going to list the amazing Jacinda Ardern and her front bench. In NZ First, Im with Tracey Martin and would you believe it, Winston Peters : both capable politicians who have helped make a difference this year. In the Greens, I admire James Shaw a lot and Chloe Swarbrick, who is bringing a real grown up debate to drug reform. None of this means I don’t rate the others ; that’s my point really. And I don’t want to get into the National Party. Their backbenchers in particular will be feeling very left out as they strive to make themselves relevant. Bring on 2019.

  4. Chris T 4

    So what are your actual ratings then?

  5. I’m not actually allowed to comment, but on the off-chance this makes it past the moderators: thank you Darien for your efforts. Trans-Tasman’s ratings were all about who was winning fame and who was a slick operator, but the most important measure is “Whose interests are you representing?”, and on that measure you always came out at the best end of the bell curve.

    • r0b 5.1

      Can I request that PM’s ban be lifted please? He has served enough time (for what was a contentious banning in the first place).

      Adding my voice of thanks for your work Darien!

      • Anne 5.1.1

        Ditto to both rOb.

        PM was banned on highly questionable grounds which I found surprising given the normal high calibre of the person who was responsible.

        Darien’s crime was she chose to champion ordinary working people and in particular those on low wages – non glamorous and non sexy in the eyes of many.

        It is the Dariens of this world who are mentioned in the history books for all the right reasons.

      • lprent 5.1.2

        Will do after I get to Otaki. If it is still there.

        • patricia bremner

          Merry Christmas Happy Holiday Iprent. Thank you as well . Drive safely. Our son is ahead of what looks like a deluge coming to the Central North Island.
          In fact Merry Christmas to all the authors and contributors and guests. Some great reads.
          Darien you are true to your beliefs .

          • lprent

            Actually flew to Wellington, bus to train station, train to Waikanae and brother picked me up from there.

            The only driving was to Auckland airport at 0530

            While I like driving the North Island, my partner is from the deep south and describes the North Island as bland and boring… Hard to disagree if you aren”t looking at the geology and history…

    • RedLogix 5.2

      Your ban was effectively rescinded by me almost within days. I’ve referred to this a number of times in the open threads but you may have missed it.

      Welcome back; I’m sorry it’s taken this long to convey this to you.

  6. R.P Mcmurphy 6

    keep up the good fight!

  7. I feel love 7

    Appreciate your hard work Darien.

  8. OnceWasTim 8

    Little, Faafoi, Marton 5 Michelin Stars; Lees-Galloway and Jacinda Ardern 4.5 Michelin Stars. more to follow.
    Opposition MPs will be measured on the Brylcreem Black Hole scale except for Finlayson: 2.5 Michelin Stars for honesty and resigning. with a 3 Star Merit for humour, a promise of a knighthood, and a stool somewhere in the Judiciary.
    Bennett, Collins and Bridges, 5 Bryclcreem Black Holes; Gerry having survived a previous 4, 1 to go with the next putsch in 2019.

  9. Politicians and ratings?

    Well,… I’m sure in the eyes of the exploited many have a rather dim view of a fair few of them. Especially for those who were invited here with bogus promises of a better life by the John Key led National govt. The ChiNational party.

    The Big Scam: Our immigration system is broken | Stuff.co.nz

  10. Philj 10

    Good news that Trans Tasman has ‘met the market’. Didn’t see it in the RW MSM. Lol.
    Thank you Darien, the real workers are seldom appreciated.

  11. Pete 11

    What is it that sees us so needing to rank everything and read others’ ranking lists? No wonder National Standards in schools was such an easy sell.

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