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Carter’s piss-poor blackmail & careerism

Written By: - Date published: 11:20 pm, October 3rd, 2010 - 89 comments
Categories: accountability, labour - Tags:

So, Chris Carter is threatening a ‘tell-all’ book on the Fifth Labour Government published at the next election. But he says he won’t publish it if he gets to stay in Labour. It’s blackmail, a further act of treachery for which he deserves to be evicted from the party. Carter’s rot is the corruption of all MPs who forget who they were elected to serve.

The fact that Carter is willing to threaten Labour’s election chances, and by extension the success of the policies and principles it stands for, turns my stomach. It’s Carter saying that his paycheck and the feeling of pride he gets from being an MP matters more to him than what Labour stands for. Get rid of him. The selfish bastard has forgotten his job as a Labour MP. He has forgotten that his job is to represent the needs, beliefs, and aspirations of working Kiwis above and beyond his self-interest.

I don’t think Carter has anything juicy either. If he really had the ability to hurt Labour, he would have made this threat privately, not tried to use the media to magnify it.

This problem, I think, goes further than Carter within Labour and in other parties too. There are too many MPs and staff who get used to the good pay and the power – who come to feel they’re entitled to it and become adverse to going out on a limb to fight for the people who put them there because they have too much personally at risk.

How can Labour avoid this?

By telling prospective MPs from the outset that Parliament is not a career. A very few MPs might stay on for 6,7,8 terms but they must be the exception, not the rule. Any MP who is not on the track to be a senior minister some day shouldn’t hang around more than two terms. Without a moment’s pause, I can think of half a dozen current Labour MPs who have been allowed to hold safe seats while contributing very little for too long – and they’re nearly unmoveable now because they have been allowed to build an iron tight grasp on their local party organisations.

To remind MPs and staff that they are there to serve Labour, that it is the Labour Party and its supporters who got them where they are, all should have to tithe. Everyone should give 10% while MPs and senior staff on 100K plus salaries should give at least 20%. It would act to remind them at whose pleasure they serve, who put them where they are. It would go a long way to fixing the money troubles too.

By selecting candidates who aren’t careerists. Labour has some very good junior MPs who got their start in politics in the Leader’s office but I think there’s too much of it going on. There are too many who are too young and who owe their position to relationship’s within the Parliamentary wing, rather than achievement in the wider labour/social justice movement.

Of course, we can say the same about National – that party faces a real problem with the endless parade of useless seat-fillers it has taken on in the last two terms. Bennett, Lee, Young, Gilmore, Bakshi, Wagner, the other Bennett, Lotu-Iiga, King, Adams, Ardern, Auchinvole, Blue, Calder, Coleman, Dean, Foss, Goodhew, etc. Who’s going to be the next leadership generation from that lot?

But I don’t care about them. I care about the Left. And Labour, as the Left’s biggest party, needs to pay more attention to the people it gets on as MPs and keeping them focused on the fact that their job is to deliver for the working people of New Zealand, not for themselves.

89 comments on “Carter’s piss-poor blackmail & careerism ”

  1. Cactus Kate 1

    Yet if someone from the right publishes this post you would call it gay-bashing.

    Carter should have been booted out months ago.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      Seems you have no idea.

      • Cactus Kate 1.1.1

        Yes, no idea why Labour haven’t already booted him out.

        • ZeeBop 1.1.1.1

          Carter brought a lot of damage to the Labour party with his spending.

          He either had a hissy fit at his own incompetance, or figured he’d help himself by giving his leader an obvious opportunity act like a leader and kick Carter around (closure).

          So my guess is Carter, consciously or unconsciously, forced the issue by writing the note and getting caught.

          Then he cried a lot, and then the party looked at the polling and figured it would be easier to let Carter self-destructive hiss fit stand for as long as possible to cleanse the Carter-Labour association of spending.

          So Labour want Carter around and in the dog house, so to speak, to keep the heckles of the spending scandal pointed at Nat and ACT.

          Goff gets to go out and say look we’ve dealt with our abusives spenders, pulls Carter up, shows Carter to the press, look I’ve kicked him in the backside, he cries a lot. Goff couldn’t do that if Carter ran off the map,
          like that Nat MP who Key made sure we didn’t find out why he was kicked out.

        • roger nome 1.1.1.2

          wow – for a lawyer (or what ever legal title it is you have) you sure are a vexatious dick Mesculine Mind Kate.

    • Maynard J 1.2

      If somebody from the Right wrote this it probably would be gay bashing.

      • Cactus Kate 1.2.1

        Point proved.

        • felix 1.2.1.1

          For a fancy lawyer you’re a bit of a thickie really Kate. There isn’t any gay bashing in the post.

          If you had written it, you would probably make all the same points as Marty has but pepper it with innuendo, anti-gay slurs, and puerile homobhobic jokes.

          If David had written it, he would make one point, quote you and say “indeed”, and end with something like “btw he’s gay, not that there’s anything wrong with that but there certainly seem to be a lot of gays in Labour.”

          If Cameron had written it, it would likely contain nothing but the gay jokes.

          • NickS 1.2.1.1.1

            What Felix said.

            Also, Kate, go read some LGBT and feminist blogs, as it might make you look like less of a complete arse next time.

        • roger nome 1.2.1.2

          The point that your monika is derrived from personal over-use of psychadelics?

    • Draco T Bastard 1.3

      Where’s the gay bashing?

      Marty pointed to Carter as a symptom of rot that exists within the Labour Party. He could be right or wrong about that but he is right that the Labour Party needs to take a look at itself. It’s lost it’s way and is no longer of the Left.

      As for Carter being booted out months ago? He was given time to recuperate and redeem himself, which is what people do when people start acting irrationally, and he’s thrown that chance away.

      • Tigger 1.3.1

        Because Kate, when the right writes about gays they tend to play the man, not the actions. I can cite several circumstances this year alone where the sexuality of Carter and indeed Chauval, was beaten up rather than the issue they were in the media for.

        And as a gay man I’d seriously suggest you stop using faux-homophobia to make a point. I’d actually weather the real homophobes than the trip you’re peddling here – at least they’re honest.

        Back on point – I assume Carter’s tell all will reveal his own skeletons. Remember Chris, many of us know where they’re buried…if you want to tell all then that’s fine but make sure you do tell it all.

    • Ari 1.4

      Firstly…

      You’re a righty. I know there are righties out there that believe in say social liberty, real democracy, and some element of collectivism, and in some senses I do count you on that side of the camp. But the behaviour of so many taints the efforts of the few, and EVERYONE who comes from an overall anti-gay group has to be treated as anti-gay until they demonstrate otherwise unless we want gay rights to be dogwhistled into oblivion. I wish the Right would clean up their act and let us lift the finger of suspicion, but the onus isn’t on us anymore.

      Secondly…

      A lot of the otherwise legitimate criticism of Carter has been accompanied by homophobic language or dogwhistling criticism. (for instance unnecessarily focusing on his partner and treating him differently than a long-term girlfriend would have been treated) It’s perfectly okay to call those anti-gay, but still criticise Carter on similar grounds where he legitimately deserves criticising. If “your side” wants to criticise Carter, do it while keeping your bloody hands clean.

      Thirdly…

      If someone on the Left did the same type of dogwhistling or overtly homophobic criticism, they’d be called out just as badly. Two words for you on that sort of thing: Chris Trotter. 😉

      • Swampy 1.4.1

        Absolutely pathetic crap, tar a whole political spectrum with responsibility for a viewpoint you dislike.

        Would you like it if someone suggested the left are collectively responsible for Marxism and the millions Mao and Stalin killed? Or Muslims are all responsible for September 11?

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    Yes. Yes. And yes.

    I’m actually surprised that National would keep dead wood around. In all the top corporate firms, if you cannot prove that you are clearly top level material, you get used up and chucked out within 2-3 years and fresh meat for the grinder put in.

    I should say however that tithing away $20K after tax money out of an $100K salary is a hell of a lot.

    • Cactus Kate 2.1

      “Who’s going to be the next leadership generation from that lot?”

      Very pot, kettle, black when Labour have to go back to Phil Goff for leadership and you’ve still got an errant MP running around threatening to create internal mayhem.

      I’m no fan of the National back-benches but I wouldn’t trade any of them for the supposed high-achievers of the Labour caucus.

      • Bored 2.1.1

        Prickly woman,

        I think you have it right about pots and kettles, I see that the blue pot and red kettle are somewhat empty at present, its far more vapour than H2O. Im with Marty re the need for the liquid to be more associated with a particular flavour or essence than is currently the case.

        From the little sip of the broth I have had I can say that the “chefs blue soup of the day” is the same as the “chefs red soup of the day” except it is presented far better, more croutons and not as bland. It even looks beeter on the photo menu.

        On the gay waiter front, I would have expected that the embaressing episode of poisoning the red chefs soup then crying into his cups might have persuaded him to absent himself before he was sacked. Strange little restaurant he hangs out at, needs a few more house rules.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      I’m actually surprised that National would keep dead wood around.

      I’m not. It comes from thinking that you’reborn to rule. When that happens and your followers start worshipping at your feet then the deadwood at the top gets left there.

      In all the top corporate firms, if you cannot prove that you are clearly top level material, you get used up and chucked out within 2-3 years and fresh meat for the grinder put in.

      And the people making those decisions stay at the top.

  3. Just saying (NOT) 3

    [deleted link]

    [lprent: you are toast when I get near a computer again…

    Updated – you are now classed permanently moderated at your IP level for using another persons handle. I’m not going to take it further for the moment as I suspect it was more stupid ignorance than intentional trolling. But I’d suggest that you look very long and very hard at the ethos prevalent on the net about identity theft of pseudonyms. It is why we have gravatars to make it easy to detect, and why all site operators will land on it hard. If I see a repetition I will broadcast the details across the site operators. ]

    • just saying 3.1

      Dunno who YOU are, but you’re not “Just Saying’.
      Why use someone else’s identity?
      That avatar looks a bit familiar, maybe the moderators can let us know if you are someone previously known by another name.

  4. mcflock 4

    Carter’s latest move is also a fine example of another problem with our current crop of politicians: the near-complete lack of subtlety, grace, intelligence and planning more than one step ahead.

    People can say lots of things (and they have) about Bolger, Muldoon, Clark or Cullen, but they had some grasp of how to be politicians.

    I would love to be corrected, but I don’t think that there’s anyone in Parliament who has a deft touch at diplomacy, or even a coherent strategy that goes beyond the next opinion poll. Key’s current strategy is to avoid committing to anything and use ministers as cannon fodder – that’s about as close as we get. There’s always the possibility that Goff is letting his party under-perform now so they have big hits come election time, but I won’t hold my breath.

    To go geek, where is NZ’s Vetinari?

  5. Draco T Bastard 5

    Everyone should give 10%…

    I believe that they already do.

    as the Left’s biggest party,

    Too big to fail?

    Really, it could be time for the left to look for another party. Labour hasn’t been Left since the 1980s. There’s several to chose from. The Greens, Democrats for Social Credit, the Alliance and probably a few more.

    • luva 5.1

      Draco

      Labour is perfect for the centre left of New Zealand. I would say 40% of voters are leftish and the vast majority of them are quite clearly happy with Labour and what they have done in power over the past 30 years.

      Only the small small minority of far left loonies like yourself think there is a need for the left to look somewhere else. In short there isn’t the need because we are happy with what Labour does. Elections do not lie.

      I am curious as to where the centre is for you. You are so mouthy and loud and critical of anyone who has a different political or economic perspective to you yet you fail to see most people find your political and economic leaning abhorent. Your arrogance is unprecedented.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        Apparently, most people prefer Green party policies when they just read the polices without having them associated with any party. That would indicate that it’s not 40% that are leftish but that most people are hard left.

        There’s this thing called reality – it has a radical left bias. We must exist within strict limits set by the natural ecology so it behoves us to see to it that everyone lives well within those limits. Anybody who thinks otherwise is likely to be either ignorant (Doesn’t know there’s limits), delusional (Knows the limits but thinks we can ignore them) or psychopathic (Is only out to make themselves rich no matter what it costs everybody else).

        Yes, I’m an arrogant bastard (I’ve said that several times). Sometimes it’s the only way to get the truth across. There may not be an objective truth on morals but there is most definitely an objective truth about physical resources and their sustainable use.

      • Rex Widerstrom 5.1.2

        Only the small small minority of far left loonies like yourself think there is a need for the left to look somewhere else.

        Really? I’m regularly critical of both “major” parties (and, IMHO, give praise where it’s due) and I’m in agreement with Draco.

        To characterise 40% of voters as “quite happy with Labour” uses the same logic that TVNZ uses when saying Paul Henry is “popular”. People want what’s on offer (news, or leftish policies) but that doesn’t mean they’re happy with the vehicle through which it’s delivered – it’s just that there’s only a couple of vehicles on offer and neither is appealing.

        Many (most, IMO) simply tolerate it due to a variety of factors, the greatest being psychological inertia and the assumption that “everyone else” finds it okay and thus there’s little point in agitating for change.

        I think if you sat down with your 40% and teased out their opinions, including articulating clearly what those other parties had to offer – and, most importantly, gave them the confidence to make a change by reassuring them that the other people you’d spoken to had indicated their willingness to do so – you might be surprised at the result.

        We all assume National and Labour and various flavours of closed candidate selection and list ranking and indeed the whole “business as usual” edifice of government is “too big to fail”. But it’s not. All it takes to effect change is confidence in the ability of your fellow NZers to see the need for it, and act.

    • Marty G 5.2

      nah, they used to tithe but that was Clark’s rule. They don’t do it anymore.

      • M 5.2.1

        Huh, that’s interesting…any justification for the change? Or did they just need to get rid of everything Clark did?

      • Draco T Bastard 5.2.2

        Ah, I’d heard about it ~2006 and hadn’t heard that it had changed.

  6. jcuknz 6

    The point is that the country doesn’t want either a left or right but is happy to go along with either a centre right or centre left .. so you screaming extremists are just an irritation on the face of politics.

  7. outofbed 7

    The hard arse reality is, Labour are not going to win in 2011 so Carter publishing a book won’t make much difference

    • The Baron 7.1

      But it would be an interesting book nevertheless… from a historical standpoint, a tell all from someone who was in his priviledged position would be fascinating, even if tainted by his recent nuttiness.

      Its a pity we don’t have more of a tradition of memoirs here. While they always have to have a grain of salt, they are usually very useful sources of understanding and context.

  8. Leopold 8

    Yep. Would be inclined to make it ironclad rule that MPs only serve 3 terms at the max and then urinate off, if they have not made high achieving minister (not just any old ministerial post)
    And that every candidate has spent at least 6 years of their working life outside Parliament

  9. Marty G said

    To remind MPs and staff that they are there to serve Labour, that it is the Labour Party and its supporters who got them where they are, all should have to tithe.

    And that’s where Labour gets it wrong Marty. They are not there to serve Labour. They are they to serve the voters in their electorates who put them there, or in the case of list MP’s, to serve the taxpayers of New Zealand, regardless of who they voted for. Alliegance to Labour (or to whichever party they represent) is secondary to alliegance to ALL New Zealanders.

    • Marty G 9.1

      It’s Labour that the voters are voting for, these people have been selected to be Labour candidates. They are there to serve Labour’s voters and values.

      • smhead 9.1.1

        This is shocking. MPs are elected to work for all New Zealanders. You show Marty just how screwed the labour party is. Yes its true most Labour MPs only see themselves as serving their voters’ values. You see it with Darien Fenton seeing herself as a Union MP, representing the unionists in Labour. You see it with Carter representing the Rainbow faction, serving Rainbow interests. You see it with Okeroa and Mahuta, representing Maori interests (except when it comes to make difficult choices between Labour and Maori like over foreshore and seabed, in which case they will shit on their own vote).

        What about the majority of New Zealanders who aren’t unionists and aren’t rainbow or aren’t Maori? Oh they’re just TAXPAYERS who didn’t vote Labour so don’t need constituency representation or support. THey’re to be milked for all they’re worth.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.2

        I’d expect such a comment from a NACT supporter as it’s heading well into the authoritarian mindset. MPs are there to serve all NZers. The ones voted in under a Labour ticket are expected to do so within the values and policies of the Labour party but they’re still there to serve NZ and not the party.

      • sean14 9.1.3

        Any MP who is not on the track to be a senior minister some day shouldn’t hang around more than two terms

        Who would decide whether or not someone was on the track to becoming a senior minister one day? Surely whether or not someone is an effective local MP is an important consideration too.

        It’s Labour that the voters are voting for, these people have been selected to be Labour candidates. They are there to serve Labour’s voters and values.

        I’m not convinced that was the case under FPP and I’m even less convinced it is the case under MMP. One of the features I really like about MMP is that I can vote for the party I want to be in government, while I can choose someone from a different party to represent my electorate if I want to.

        If voters in any given electorate want to elect the same MP over and over again, who are you to tell them that they can’t?

    • Marty G 9.2

      And the point is that people like Carter are only serving themselves – not the political ideals that got them where they are.

      • Inventory2 9.2.1

        I have no argument with you that Carter is self-serving Marty. MP’s though should remember that it is you and I who pay their salaries and expenses, not the party on whose coat-tails they got the gig.

      • indiana 9.2.2

        Somebody was obviously protecting him all these years then eh? Surely after all this time in politics he suddenly just didn’t snap and wake up one morning and say to himself “Stuff you lot, I’m only in this for me now!” CC had been building up to this and no one in the Labour caucus saw the writing on the wall.

    • prism 9.3

      Inventory2 That’s a description of allegiance of electoral independents.

    • felix 9.4

      I agree with Inventory2.

      MPs are supposed to be answerable to all constituents, not just those who voted for them.

      • Blighty 9.4.1

        and Carter’s meant to be loyal to the values of the party that got him where he is and the people who voted for him. that’s not to say he’s not answerable to others. Just means he can’t forget who he’s there to fight for.

  10. Rharn 10

    Goff needs to make a public statement that he and the Labour party is not going to be subject to blackmail of any kind. He needs to publicly sack Goff by stating that he is going to ‘recommend’ to the Labour Caucus to expell Chris Carter forthwith . No warning whatsoever. Just do it Phil and show the prick who is in charge.

  11. I agree with leon, comment on DimPost, that the book will go straight to film.

    maybe it could be called ‘Hobble it’

  12. Olwyn 12

    Firstly, while Chris Carter’s talk of writing a book has been presented as a threat, it need not actually be one, and I notice that Andrew Little, in the Herald, has spoken of the alleged threat in counterfactual terms. Secondly, it seems as if Carter’s electorate remains in support of him. Thirdly, the guy has served NZ well in his previous roles under Helen Clark. Not to mention, his controversial spending was in fact approved by parliamentary services. Furthermore, he claims loyalty to the Labour Party, but to be at odds with its present leadership. There is certainly a problem to be solved with regard to Chris Carter and his unusual attack on the leadership, but it will not be solved by vilifying the man in the hope that he slinks off into the sunset. A just treatment of him must not only take into account his recent feckless behaviour, but also his electorate’s confidence in him and his record of service to NZ.

    • Blighty 12.1

      how is ‘i’ll publish a tell all book to try to embarrrass you during an election campaign unless you give me what I want’ not a threat?

  13. the sprout 13

    the problem to me seems that candidates aren’t selected meritocratically, or at least the merits they are chosen on aren’t the best for fostering the kinds of politicians we want.

    the merits they are chosen on are:

    1. which ruling cliques within a party are they loyal to, and
    2. which demographic interests they satisfy

    intelligence and integrity may be considered, but they are at best tertiary considerations to the above.

    • prism 13.1

      Well explained sprout and Olwyn. Thanks. In deciding on candidates, being a confident speaker is important usually, rating slightly higher than the vision, integrity and reasonableness of what comes out. Just listen to the pollies that get into the media circle.

    • pollywog 13.2

      I’ve got high hopes for Kris Fa’afoi. The guys a bona fide spin merchant with a keen nose for the brown. That’s pretty much a win win, tick all the boxes kinda politician in anyones books !!!

      Actually make that big expectations rather than high hopes . I expect he’ll go far but won’t achieve FA just like his predecessor.

      And speaking of teh gHeyz. How many of the current lot on both sides of the house play for the other team ?

      • the sprout 13.2.1

        seems like the Goffice is desperately keen to re-brand itself as macho blue collar, motorbike ridin’ firewood choppin’ chainsaw lovin’ Labour; that doesn’t leave any place for teh gayz or lezbeans

      • The Voice of Reason 13.2.2

        “And speaking of teh gHeyz. How many of the current lot on both sides of the house play for the other team ?”

        What the fuck does that matter, pollywog? If you want to play the bigot, there’s plenty of other sites available to you.

        • pollywog 13.2.2.1

          Oh fuck off TVOR !!!…ask a simple question and get labelled a bigot. Such a sensitive wee flower aren’t you ?

          I’m just wondering if theres a greater proportion of gayz in teh house compared to the national average and why that is. I’d also be keen to know how many MP’s are married with how many kids too, what kind of cars they drive, what their opinions are on a range of issues and a whole bunch of other ‘useless’ trivia shit.

          There’s got be some sort of profile of a politician, beyond self serving psychopath, so major parties can develop a test for suitability that’ll weed out the David Garretts, The Anne Tolleys, the Paula Bennetts, the Bill Englishs and John Key’s before they get into positions to fuck us all over, hold the country to ransom and sell the rest of it from under our feet.

          Develop some sort of empathy/compassion/altruism rating that’s determined in a manner, much like Deckard sussing out replicants on Blade Runner, and nip em in the bud before they become too dangerous for the public good, or at least limit their lifespan.

          • The Voice of Reason 13.2.2.1.1

            It is a simple question, all right, but in the sense of non intelligent, not easy. If you need a profile to determine the likely chance of a candidate turning out to be a self serving psychopath, you’ve only got to see if their election pamphlet is printed on blue or yellow paper. Now that’s simple!

            You’re the one behaving like the replicant, Pollywog. No apparent empathy, compassion or altruism from you if MP’s are gay. The sexuality of MP’s is none of your business or mine for that matter so why don’t you crawl off on the razor blade of your own bigotry, you slug.

            • pollywog 13.2.2.1.1.1

              you’ve only got to see if their election pamphlet is printed on blue or yellow paper. Now that’s simple!

              Whoosh…thats the sound of your subtle wit whizzing over my head. In other words, i have no effing idea what you’re on about…

              No apparent empathy, compassion or altruism from you if MP’s are gay.

              Whoa…slow your role there Tonto. I couldn’t give a shit if all our MP’s were gay but i’m well impressed with your detect-a-bigot meter running in the red and your readiness to defend the standard from teh bigoted homophobes…PFFFT

              I take it then, that you don’t know how many gay MP’s we have. Why didn’t you just say so from the get go ? There’s no shame in admitting you’re ignorant !!!

              • The Voice of Reason

                I don’t have a detect a bigot meter, Pollywog, but my bullshit detector works just fine. The sexuality of MP’s is nobodies business but their own and claiming now that you’ve been called on it that you don’t care about which are gay, when it was you that asked the question in the first place rings hollow.

                You could grow up and acknowlege that it’s irrelevant or you can stick with being a homophobe. Up to you, pal.

                • pollywog

                  Whatever’s clever trevor…

                  Of course an MP’s sexuality is irrelevent unless you wanted to profile, in this instance, politicians, then i’d say sexuality definitely plays a part. Dunno what that would be but it’d be interesting to find out.

                  Are there reputable non stereotypical vocations/industries with a higher percentage of gays ? Is politics one of them ?

                  Now maybe you could grow up yourself and stop seeing monsters under the bed where there are none.

          • The Baron 13.2.2.1.2

            I love it when you two get going. Popcorn?

      • Ari 13.2.3

        Why exactly are you interested? You trying to make sure the queer community is adequately represented? (It probably isn’t) Or are you using homosexuality as a way to cast aspersions? Because that’s just completely insecure and bullying.

        • pollywog 13.2.3.1

          Dunno…It’s just theres always been this ‘rainbow’ tag to the Labour party, as though it were natural for gays to be left leaning idealogues. If there were an equal or more right leaning MP’s who were gay, wouldn’t it shoot that meme down ?

          My general feeling is, there’d be a higher proportion of gays in politics, as there are in the creative sector, compared to the general population, just because being gay seems to be as much about politics as it is about identity.

          Is that because politicians are more tolerant 🙂

          The trouble is, as can be seen here, it’s hard to have an honest, open and frank discussion without things rapidly reverting to the level of gay bashing or outing bigots. Once that starts, you can generally forget any meaningful dialogue taking place as everyone reverts to their default position.

          Is there not a certain amount of disingenuity in not declaring your sexuality to the electorate given that many would vote according to their default bias ? And what of the dishonesty in not being true to one’s self and hiding ones true identity behind a facade of heterosexuality ?

          • mcflock 13.2.3.1.1

            Is there not a certain amount of disingenuity in not declaring your sexuality to the electorate given that many would vote according to their default bias ? And what of the dishonesty in not being true to one’s self and hiding ones true identity behind a facade of heterosexuality ?

            ??? seriously?

            If it doesn’t affect their ability to do the job (including being illegal or patently hypocritical) it’s nobody’s business but theirs.

            If MPs voted to recriminalise homosexuality, then yes there might be a public interest in the demographic characteristics of the people who made that decision. But in general bigots shouldn’t be validated by pretending that MPs have some obligation to “declare” what they chose to do with their genitals. It’s not 10 pounds of MJ in a boogie board case.

            • pollywog 13.2.3.1.1.1

              As public figures, politicians sexuality/sexual exploits is as much a topic of interest as sports/movie/pop stars.

              just seems like theres 2 default positions…

              1) out and out pro gay
              2) bigoted homophobe

              …the neutral position being to not talk about it

              • mcflock

                To be frank, who JLo’s shagging is noone else’s business either.

                If actors want to feed stories to the tabloids to boost media visibility, that’s their right. But they are under no obligation to do so, and many of them don’t.

                Gender and sexual identity politics are a freaking minefield, and one I tend to avoid like the plague. As far as I can figure:

                1) if you were out and proud and looking to ensure that queer-identifying parliamentarians hit a demographically-representative level of 20-30% (depending on given definitions of “queer” and the gender balance), then that would be empowering and nice;

                2) if you were straight/closetted and a political issue was related to the personal beliefs/practices of sexual orientation (a very limited set), then okay, if you were prepared to honestly give the same information;

                3) if you were a demonstrated homophobe pretending to just ask out of general interest (but planning a harrassment list), that would be nasty;

                4) if you’re just a regular person asking an irrelevant question because of some subconscious legacy of growing up and living in a bigoted society, then the PC response is to gently point out the fact that gender/sexual identity is usually irrelevant. Assuming answer 3 and screaming homophobe straight off the bat is unfair, but then ignoring homophobia or racism in general conversation (or blogsites) just enables it (cf. our glorious Smile and Wave and his reaction to paul henry’s latest idiocy).

                • pollywog

                  Nice one mcflock.

                  People say sexuality among politicians is irrelevent, but then politicians tend to play the safe middle white christian thing with 2 kids and a dog to the hilt…

                  Would it be of the public interest to then find out that politician was gay ? Would it have affected their chances for election ?

                  You can say sexuality is irrelevent but without it you get an incomplete profile of a person. Same as i’d like to know what sort of car they drive ? is it a big gas guzzling hummer, do they not drive at all, maybe they’ve got a motor bike they think endears them to the everyman set.

                  The point is, it builds up a more accurate representation of a person to know the irrelevent trivial details and make a more informed judgment.I have more respect for an out and out gay than one whose sexuality is irrelevent, but yeah it’s a hard card to play well.

                  For that I’m interested to see how Chauvel matches up against Dunne in Ohariu and how Carter would fare as an independent in Te Atatu against, say a straight working class woman with said 2 kids and a dog ?

                  • mcflock

                    Why the hell would you ever need a “profile” of an MP so complete that it includes their sex life? Honestly?

                    Vehicle choice says a lot about environmental attitudes etc, but sexuality?
                    Barring sexuality-specific legislation (rare indeed), it has no bearing on how that MP will vote on legislation, or their activities in select committees.

                    The exception is if you wish to lobby or appeal to an mp on something other than their conscious logic. Which is getting into dodgy territory.

                    I have no need to know if an MP is married or has kids or is gay or sleeps around on their partner or is highly promiscuous or is celibate or anything else, unless this brings them into conflict with legislation upon which they are voting, is illegal, involves the expenditure of public funds in a way that “is a bad look”, or is patently hypocritical.

                    I need to know: their party policies, their track record in sticking to those policies, and whether they as individuals and as a party are evil / incompetent / morons / Jesus.

                    • pollywog

                      Why the hell would you ever need a “profile” of an MP so complete that it includes their sex life? Honestly?

                      Why the hell do we ‘need’ ethnic and religious data collected on census and a whole bunch of other forms ?

                      What difference does it make to anyones perecption of me being Samoan/NZer with a christian bent?

                      Sexuality says a lot about religious attitudes. That has a lot to do with initial voter endorsement. A gay politician is hardly likely to represent a religious majority’s concerns.

                      I need to know: their party policies, their track record in sticking to those policies, and whether they as individuals and as a party are evil / incompetent / morons / Jesus.

                      It’s good to know that stuff as well but i reckon the average punter votes for the person, not the policy or even the party. For all the enlightened progressive attitudes i can’t see us having an openly gay prime minister for quite some time.

                      And whats your defintion of evil cos the bible says… 🙂

                      BTW…KKKiwiblog has published some Neilsen Net Ratings profiling their readership. I don’t need to know, but i’d be interested to see how many gay fans DPF has got.

                    • mcflock

                      there’s a major difference between gathering population data to better understand the nation (helps with provision of services, and of course when people reckon the GG doesn’t look like a NZer it helps to point out that “NZers” aren’t all like the speaker – white and bigoted), and simply sticking your nose into people’s bedroom on the grounds that some morons only vote for sparkly personalities.

                      If anything, saying that the average voter votes for the person rather than the policy is a reson to further remove the personal from politics. If it doesn’t ffect the job, gossip about sexuality or fashion sense is time that could have been spent on policy analysis.

      • Jeremy Harris 13.2.4

        @pollywog, I think the last census had the gay population at just over 5%…

        I can think of the following members:

        Green: 1
        National: 1
        Labour: 3 or 4
        Chris Carter

        So about in line with the national average…

        • mcflock 13.2.4.1

          was there a census question on sexual orientation, then?

          Oh well, you might like to provide a link.

  14. Joe Bloggs 14

    Any “tell all” stories that Chris Carter is prepared to reveal will inevitably be insipid and watered down because all the juciest skeletons in Labour’s closet have Helen Clark’s DNA on them.

    And even Chris is not that short on judgement.

  15. Interesting 15

    So….you have named the people in the national party that you think are a waste of space…will you name the ones in the labour party that you think are:

    “…. too young and who owe their position to relationship’s within the Parliamentary wing, rather than achievement in the wider labour/social justice movement.”

  16. gingercrush 16

    I think the whole premise of the post is stupid. Ignore Chris Carter for a second and there’s the idea that unless you’re in a position to one day being a Senior Minister then you should be around for anymore than two terms is frankly fucking stupid. I hardly think Trevor Mallard and Annette King in 1984 were seen to one day be Senior Ministers. Same goes for Darren Hughes who came into parliament in 2002. Very junior when he first came in. Was put into a very junior role inside the party. Did what most junior MPs do when they initially enter parliament and sit well into the backbenches. Over time they represent their party inside select committees and may make speeches in parliament when legislation is being passes as most Cabinet Ministers have no role in this and over time climb in the rankings into more senior roles.

    But that takes time and for most MPs it takes more than two terms in parliament. Hell take a look at Tony Ryall. Entered parliament at 26 in 1990. Only made Cabinet in 1997. In 1999 spent nine years on opposition benches until 2008 when he was made a Senior Cabinet minister. 18 years and six terms later and he’s finally a senior Cabinet Minister and arguable one of the better cabinet ministers in parliament. Until your hilarious scenario someone like him should have retired in 1996.

    You’re always going to get some MPs that don’t rise in the rankings and are unlikely to ever be a Cabinet Ministers. But those MPs still play a role in parliament. They may not have the pay packet of a Cabinet Minister nor the responsibility of one. But they represent communities throughout New Zealand (some as an electorate MP others via the list), they make speeches in parliament for or against Legislation. They play active roles in select committees, hearing submissions for or against legislation and play active roles in reviewing the performances of the public sector.

    Its frankly nonsense for anyone here to suggest the 120+ Members of Parliaments just sit on their backsides and sit there in parliament doing nothing. Especially from the left who like to think they “believe in democracy”: but having read some of the nonsense spouted here, clearly don’t.

  17. Rharn 17

    Should have put this in first post. YOU DO NOT NEGOTIATE WITH THREATS. You remove them.

    Goff needs to show some decisive leadership. Sack Carter on the spot. Do it via the media. Labour and Goff need to show that they will not be subject to blackmail.

  18. Anne 18

    Marty G’s first paragraph is the essence of his post.

    It’s been said that Chris’s book is a ploy to avoid being suspended/expelled from the Labour Party. That tells me he is still in a state of denial and needs to be removed. There was a huge reservoir of support for Chris when the media began their beat-up on him back in June/July but he’s squandered most of that now. Whether he’s suspended (at least until after the next election) or expelled from Labour is up to Andrew Little and co. But it needs to happen NOW!

    It’s also been said his electorate committee is solidly behind him. That’s to be expected. It’s normal for long serving parliamentarians to surround themselves with loyal lieutenants who will stand by their MP no matter what. But this goes beyond the electorate. He has, in effect, threatened to bring down the Party if he is removed. That is an act of treachery.

  19. Bill 19

    Carter should publish. Now.

    MPs are there to serve us; the public – not political parties. If he has info that would serve us or our interest in any way, he should divulge.

    And if he’s blackmailing to retain some position or whatever then he should be tarred and feathered for failing to serve the public.

    Meanwhile, careerists would not be an issue if MPs took home no more that an average take home pay no matter how far up the parliamentary party ladder they scrambled.

    Endorsing only successful careerism is a strange notion in my mind. Who decides who might be successful? Recipe for cronyism and a whole host of corrupting behaviours.

    Meanwhile, get rid of the whole middle class liberal shower who currently constitute the Labour Party and make way for genuine working class candidates to re-create a Party of and for labour.

    Maybe then…just maybe… we’d have some people in parliament who placed a little value on democracy unlike the shallow, fashionable and opportunistic careerist incumbents who, lest we forget, are going to have the gall to ask us to vote for them again after they all voted to nullify basic measures of democratic accountability.

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      Problem is that there has been a psychographic change in the population. People who are actually labourers – even if they sit at office desks wearing white business shirts on meagre salaries – no longer view themselves as such. They swung towards National’s story hugely last time around.

      • Bill 19.1.1

        “Problem is that there has been a psychographic change in the population.”

        That’s only anecdotal. As is my contention that life long Labour supporters were willing to vote for any reasonable looking alternative. Labour were turning, or had turned into a pile of paternalistic bastards promising candy…but not until and unless you proved yourself to be a good little citizen.

        And along came John, seemingly promising candy with no strings. And the msm were tugging on his coat tails. And so people jumped thinking they were departing Labour to arrive at (whatwasitagain?) Labour Lite?

        Reality is that Labour had become (and remains) National Lite and their natural support had nowhere to go except straight into the arms of the marketing guys who were selling black as white…or blue as red.

        There are working class people aplenty in NZ. And by that I mean people who know damned fine well that they are not that strange middle class creature and who know damned fine well that they never will be. They might not use the term working class as they once did, but they espouse the values just the same even if those values are seldom if ever reflected back by popular culture and msm.

        .

        S

        • Jeremy Harris 19.1.1.1

          Labour were turning, or had turned into a pile of paternalistic bastards promising candy…

          In politics that is known as the mummy problem…

          • Colonial Viper 19.1.1.1.1

            ?

            So what’s the daddy problem?

            • Jeremy Harris 19.1.1.1.1.1

              It’s an American term…

              The Democrats have the mummy problem as in voters will vote for the Republicans when they want law and order and national defense spending increased and the Republicans will lose votes and the Democrats gain when the nation wants increased social spending…

    • RobertM 19.2

      There were careerists is both parties in the l960s when they were paid no more than secondary teachers. Does class have anything to do without political independence. Logically you’d expect the well off to be just as or more independent. Think MacMillan or Churchill in the l930’s or Turnbull in Australia now.
      Are you genuinely working class? What were your parents and grandparents education and occupation and whats yours. If your great grandparents were manual workers in the l920s and the current generation and IT workers or even primary school teachers are they really working class, possibly Paula Bennett and Judith Collins ( and I’m anything but a fan) are more working class in attitude than Jacinda Arden or Chauvenel.

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