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Campaigning Avondale Market style

Written By: - Date published: 9:43 am, July 21st, 2014 - 37 comments
Categories: blogs, election 2014, labour, Media - Tags:

Avondale market

On Sunday mornings a group of dedicated activists and I attend Avondale Market in Auckland. We hand out material, give Labour balloons to kids and talk politics to anyone who wants to.  We ask if people are on the electoral roll and fill out forms for them to make sure they can exercise their democratic rights.  Interestingly the Election Commission used to pay people to do this work and they used to be a regular sight at the market.  This year I have yet to see one.

The Market is situated in the electorate of New Lynn and is directly across the road from the electorate of Kelston, both Labour seats.  People come from throughout the country however and it is not uncommon to meet someone from the far north or from down south.

The crowd is very diverse.  Large numbers of Maori and Pasifeka and Asians attend, attracted by the fresh and healthy fruit and vegetables.  There are stalls selling Samoan dance music, carpet tiles, cleaning fluid, hats and clothing, cellphone accessories and pretty well anything you can think of.  The market feels like it has a bit of every culture in it.

The people are friendly and good natured.  They also represent something of a political barometer.  In 2008 the tide of support for Labour was going out and the people were indifferent.  In 2011 the phone was definitely off the hook.  This year there is something of a resurgence and the crowd is much more friendly to us.

The experience is somewhat cathartic for me.  Very few people that I speak to even read blogs let alone intently.  Their concerns are not with the latest beltway issue.  Their concerns are more fundamental, the woman living in a Housing Corporation house who is being moved out because the house is deemed to be too big for her, the unemployed welder suffering from chemical poisoning who keeps having his benefit cut off, the cleaner on minimum wage who cannot afford to feed his kids adequately.

Free of media distractions and the latest dark ops inspired hatchet job we can talk about Labour Party policy and what the party intends to do to improve the lives of ordinary people.  This is retail politics in its purest form.

National has also been attending in a hired stall with a corporate looking gazebo and set up.  On Labour’s side we have a suitcase and a portable table.  The symbolism of this is significant.  Despite their increased resources they struggle to attract the same sort of response that we are able to get.

A significant portion of our community are under severe pressure and are not affected by media attacks on Labour or the latest beltway scandal.  They want Labour and the left to succeed.  By doing the basics and telling them about our policy and making sure they are enrolled and know about the election we can make sure that this election will be closer than the right would let us think.


37 comments on “Campaigning Avondale Market style”

  1. Tracey 1

    This is good to know Mickey. It is especially sad given the real need of Labour type voters out there that some within the labour Party seem more focused on their personal barrows than getting rid of the current National led govt. That would be an overwhelming priority for anyone who actually gives a shit about their constituency. I speak of people like Dover Samiuels and whoever told tales to the media over the weekend. Self serving at best.

    • Rob 1.1

      Dover does gives a shit about his constiuency, that is why he voiced his opinions. Roading infrastructure may not be critical to urban dwelling Labour / Green politicos who see the regions as just somewhere you go to on holiday and therefore does not need infrastructure spend. However for the people living and working in these areas these projects are critical and need support. One of the dumbest calls made by Labour is calling this a holiday road.

      • Ad 1.1.1

        You will get better analysis of Sh1 1 to Northland on transportblog, or even NZTA.

        The Kawakawa slip isn’t on anyone’s motorway route, now or in the future. The Brynderwyn slip isn’t on anyone’s itinerary for the next thirty years, if that. Dover does not have a clue about transport, clearly. He’s just a sad old has-been uttering his last burp from his political death-bed.

        Oh but no, somehow two land slips entirely unconnected with SH1 beyond Wellsford somehow got conented in Dover’s mind. Sad and pathetic.

        Meanwhile, what Northland business could have done with over the last three weeks is an alternative access to port for their goods. Like a rail link to NorthPort at Marsden Point.

        • Jenny Kirk

          Ad – totally agree. and Dover got it wrong re whatever Kelvin D said – Kel was cut-off by Duncan Garner in mid-speech and ran with a nonsense story. Typical misconstruction by MSM.
          And Kel and Labour MPs have also been running with the need for a rail link to NorthPort – been talking about that constantly over past year. Plus the need to just fix difficult bits of the Dome Valley Road – no real need for a “holiday highway” which will only go as far as Warkworth over the next decade anyway…. and guess where PM and Nat MPs go for their holidays …. off at the
          Warkworth intersection on the way to Matakana . Omaha and other elite beach addresses !

      • Tracey 1.1.2

        well rob, provided dover thinks nationals policies, all of them are improving things for the people of northland, he has done his people a good turn. If not…

        I agree with Ad below…or above.

        I thought dover was treated badly by labour and when i saw this piece, rightly or wrongly, i thought he was taking his revenge, in public.

      • millsy 1.1.3

        But you support closing down Northland’s rail network then, which is really that the P-W link is all about.

        For people like you, infrastructure is all about roading. Rail doesnt come into it.

  2. deep throat 2

    That is the way to do it all right.
    when people see that they are being listened to then the results will follow.
    hail to the people.

  3. ianmac 3

    I am strictly average height.
    David is a tall man.
    John Key is a lot shorter than David.
    David should get alongside John and use his height advantage to diminish John’s mana.

    The photo above looks good- solidarity.

  4. BeeDee 4

    Thanks, MICKYSAVAGE for the positive news –

    Much the same sense of enthusiasm for Labour is felt by volunteers at the Wellington vege market in Newtown school grounds every Saturday. When the MP is present at our stall people wait to engage in discussion with her (MP Annette King), and at other times groups of people gather to tell of us of their personal situations: the one-time refugee from the Middle East who is now a NZer and has part-time work, bringing up her children in a Council flat (she is grateful to Labour which when in Government expanded the refugee quota to include her); a person who is worried about the lack of privacy on shared government websites where his details are no longer safe; the families waiting around at the market until the vege prices come down just before the market finishes for the day; and still others who’ve recently shifted into the electorate fill out the forms for changing their address to be able to vote.
    The mood on the ground is in such contrast to the negativity disseminated in the press.

    • Akldnut 4.1

      Thank you BeeDee, you’re also confirming the feeling we get at Avondale isn’t peculiar to West or South Auckland. We’ve been at the Henderson night markets and I’ve been speaking with stall stalwarts at the Otara Market, the feeling on the ground is totally different to the spin thats been generated by the msm. We have more than twice the number of members as we had before David became leader and the number of active volunteers has virtually trebled. Active Young labour and other young supporters has increased dramatically. Our base is so much bigger now but unless you’re in it or are managing it you just wouldn’t know.

    • The Fan Club 4.2

      Don’t you know Annette’s one of the evuulllll ABCs who should be rolled ASAP? That’s the party line round here. Can’t be an effective electorate MP, no way.

      • mickysavage 4.2.1

        Gee Fan Club way to be like all, heavy and a downer. BeeDee makes a positive comment that gave me faith in Wellington Activists and you get all negative on it.

        • The Fan Club

          Oh come off it Micky. There’s a negative campaign going on to smear certain members of caucus because they don’t support Cunliffe. I’m just pointing out to BeeDee that their hardworking and loyal local MP would be on the scrapheap if some of the vocal voices around here had their way, because she’s not clapping hard enough for Cunliffe or whatever. If that’s a negative and depressing remark, maybe the bloody purge method so in favour in these pages has a weakness.

          PS I doubt Wellington activists were in need of your faith, but I am sure they are deeply touched, if surprised you had such a low view of them to start with.

          • mickysavage

            Wow Fan Club, how weird. I hope your views are not held widely. There is no desire to smear anyone, just a hope that everyone is working for the interests of the party.

            • The Fan Club

              No, no smears. She’s just a “disloyal scum-sucking gutter trash”, that’s all.

              • mickysavage

                Come on Fan Club you have to do better than that. I just did a search and that phrase has never been used, even by Big Bruv. How about this as a deal? You and I work for a Labour victory and I support Annette being treated with the dignity she deserves (btw she is number 4 on the list and deserves to be there).

                • The Fan Club

                  “Blue 4.2.2
                  21 July 2014 at 9:13 pm
                  I don’t believe anyone has ever accused Annette of being ineffective as an electorate MP. Just of being persistently associated with a group of disloyal scum-sucking gutter trash who keep mouthing off to the media behind their leader’s back and screwing Labour’s election chances in the process.”

                  It’s right underneath this comment Micky. This is what you’ve convinced people, that large parts of caucus are “scum-sucking gutter trash”. Is it any wonder the party is fucked?

                  • fender

                    It’s an unsubstantiated belief in somebodies accusation, Fart Clubber.

                    To suggest Micky has convinced people to hold such beliefs is ridiculous and lacks evidence.

                  • mickysavage

                    OK the search engine did not pick it up and I did not read it.

                    I have not convinced people of anything.

                    I do wish that one or more MPs did not keep dissing the party on the sly. Don’t you think this is a worthy goal?

                    And Annette is number 4 on the list.

                    • The Fan Club

                      Loyalty to the leader is an admirable trait, isn’t it Micky?

                      But I think the point was made. The negative and hateful influence here are surely the people who refer to respected and hard working MPs like Annette as “disloyal scum-sucking gutter trash”. There’s no arguing, there’s no pointing out that that they might be good at their job. Once “the activists” are “100% completely fucked off” that’s it, over.

                      And you wonder why we’re on 25%.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      “We”, fan club? Why don’t you eff-off, that’d be good for a solid 0.1% rise for Labour in itself. As for Annette King. She has one more term absolute max and then she will be well deserving of farewells and congratulations for her many years of faithful service as a Labour Parliamentarian. Along with several other Labour MPs.

                  • Blue

                    Don’t blame Micky for what I said. He’s too nice to say anything like that. I’m not.

                    The leakers and those who defend and support their wrongdoing are on notice – the activists are totally 100% completely fucked off with them.

                    Being a good electorate MP or any other pleading on their behalf doesn’t cut it. There is no excuse for white-anting your own party.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Lprent got it right. From now on, every electorate MP will have to defend their candidacy at every selection. No more wave-on-throughs by small closed shop LECs.

      • Blue 4.2.2

        I don’t believe anyone has ever accused Annette of being ineffective as an electorate MP. Just of being persistently associated with a group of disloyal scum-sucking gutter trash who keep mouthing off to the media behind their leader’s back and screwing Labour’s election chances in the process.

  5. James Thrace 5

    “Interestingly the Election Commission used to pay people to do this work and they used to be a regular sight at the market. This year I have yet to see one.”

    Probably because EC Funding was cut drastically in this years budget compared to 2011 election.

    • mickysavage 5.1

      Thanks James. I thought they would attack it somehow. Those workers used to get heaps of enrolments and it is appalling if there is no longer the commitment to getting everyone enrolled.

      Could you dig out the figures?

  6. The Real Matthew 6

    Did Carmel not get the memo that the colour of the Labour Party is Red?

    Or is she trying to distance herself from a party plummeting in the polls?

    • Lanthanide 6.1

      Yeah, not very savvy of her.

      Like David Shearer wearing a blue tie on live national TV when being interviewed at Meka Whaitiri’s by-election win.

    • Akldnut 6.2

      She was wearing the outfit for an event before the market and she’s wearing a Labour rosette, she comes every week and is as hard core a labour candidate as you are a DICK. Wake up to yourself.

      • The Real Matthew 6.2.1

        Now now there is no need for your primary school little insult

        Hopefully one the moderators will swing by quickly and save your blushes

        • Akldnut

          Just matching your primary school insult pal. 😉

          • The Real Matthew

            No Trolling here.

            I think it’s very important that Labour puts on a united front.

            There has been plenty of media dedicated to the various factions within the party and the internal bickering. The public is aware of this and to overcome the stereotype every Labour politician and supporter should be out there in the same red shirt.

            The other reason is to utilise the same thinking as The Warehouse. Every employee from Stephen Tindall down wore the same uniform. With Labour being the party of equality it would send a message to the electorate if the leader, politicians and supporters all wore the same red shirt.

            Instead you’ve got a superior looking Cunliffe in a collared shirt, Sepuloni looking like a NZ First candidate and a smattering of supporters who actually look like Labour candidates!

            • JK

              Ever heard of the need to put a T-shirt in the wash … Real Matthew ? There’s only so many red T-shirts a gal can have and only so many days in the week she can wear one …

        • mickysavage

          Nope but your very poor attempt at trolling was noted.

  7. freedom 7


    Seems there is a Live Chat with David Cunliffe today at 4:30 , Questions open from 3:30

  8. Tanz 8

    there is a lot two dollar shop stuff at that market nowadays, it’s not as good as in the old days
    You might see Colin Craig there soon!!

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