Don’t mourn, organise

Written By: - Date published: 8:20 am, November 11th, 2016 - 113 comments
Categories: activism, climate change, Environment, International, Politics, Unions, us politics, workers' rights - Tags:


The right is in the ascendancy currently in the English speaking Western World with right wing Governments in the US, the UK, Australia and New Zealand. What is a good progressive meant to do?

I read this passionate suggestion on a talented friend’s Facebook page and thought it should be shared.

Okay, NZ. Tonight, we mourn. Tomorrow we GET OUR SHIT TOGETHER. Enough hand wringing. Enough hating on America. Enough yelling about forgotten classes and middle class smugness and all that. Tomorrow we look at what each and every single one of us can do and we get out there and we do it.

I couldn’t be more serious. Think global, act local. We have problems here, let’s fix them. To a certain extent it doesn’t matter who is in power, in that so much of the shit I see has been perpetuated by successive governments from both ends of the spectrum. If you think much will change the *fundamental* issue, which is that humans have become fearful, tribal, easily able to turn a blind eye, well – politicians won’t do that much if we don’t show them the way.

Be decent, kind, respectful. Get to know your neighbour and build your community. Volunteer. Join a union. Help at a food bank. Get involved in a cause you believe in. Know the names of the kids on your street.

It’s like we said: we don’t just need a change of government. We need a change of heart. Somewhere, we lost our purpose. Let’s find it. Because we need it more than ever.”

In the immortal words of Helen Kelly, don’t mourn organise.

113 comments on “Don’t mourn, organise”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    The democrats would be a right-wing party in NZ anyway.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      Yep. They’re pretty much as radical right-wing as National.

      • james 1.1.1

        I doubt many normal people would consider National radical right-wing.

        • Michelle

          what is a normal person James can you please define one

        • Siobhan

          You’re right there James. I’d have thought National (and the democrats) were more radical ideologs following neo liberal ideals rather than being “Right wing”..

          • Draco T Bastard

            I’d say that their ideology is what makes them right-wing. Their ideology is based around protecting rich people from the risks that they take and making them richer. To put the costs of those rich people fully upon the general population.

        • DoublePlusGood

          Correct. A lot of normal people don’t consider National to be a radical right wing party. Those normal people are wrong.

          • weka

            Ha ha, nice one.

          • Chuck

            What is normal that’s the question…

            Maybe normal = the majority of people in NZ that only worry about politics once every 3 years.

            Using one of the Wikipedia definitions then NZF / Winston Peters is a Far Right Party as anti immigration is one of its cornerstone policy’s.


            Funny that National is attacked by the left for being pro immigration.

            And which party increased the benefit beyond the rate of inflation for the first time in approx. 30 years. That’s not the work of a Far Right Party.

            End of the day normal people see National as centre Right. If anything that tag is swaying more to centre (if not slightly left).

        • Stuart Munro

          Yeah – more radical kleptocrat.

      • stunned mullet 1.1.2

        What’s your rationale for calling National radical right wing ?

        I would have thought from a current NZ perspective and perhaps a world perspective both of our largest parties are pretty centrist in their outlook.

        The reason I say that are they both are proponents of the following to varying degrees

        1. Progressive taxation
        2. Government funded healthcare and education
        3. Reasonably large vote social welfare

        • Draco T Bastard

          1. National doesn’t support progressive taxation hence the decrease in taxes on the rich and increase of taxes on the poor (GST)
          2. Can’t say that I’ve seen National supporting government healthcare. In fact, they’ve been cutting support for it ever since they got into power
          3. And they’ve been attacking beneficiaries since forever

          So, yeah, National are radical right-wing.

          • Richard McGrath

            Labour governments make the radical reforms, National ones are conservative by nature and make purely cosmetic changes – real tax reforms would have resulted in a low flat income tax and reduced government spending, neither of which the Key government have implemented, despite having had eight years to do so.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Did you know that we already have a pretty flat income tax? GST is so regressive that real income tax is essentially flat. The bottom few percentage actually pay a higher proportion of their income in tax than the rich.

              What did National do? They increased GST.

    • Perhaps not all of them , but certainly some of them go way beyond the issues of simple ‘Right ‘or ‘Left ‘political considerations…

      View this :

  2. Manuka AOR 2

    I would like to ask that those evangelical Trump supporters and other far-rightists etc – if you have nothing positive to contribute to this thread, please confine your attacking or diversionary or concern troll comments to another post! (thanks)

    • Nessalt 2.1

      oh poor wee dear. Are your ears to sensitive to hear words you don’t agree with? is this your safe space?

      It’s people like you who have allowed trump to prosper.

      Insulting someone and belittling them for having an opinion different to yours won’t make them change their ways. If anything it can re-enforce them. en masse this leads to demagogues like Trump being able to win despite the best efforts of media and commentators to demonise him because you demonise his supporters for liking some of what he says. Even worse you demonise swing voters because they may not agree with Clinton, pushing them into Trumps camp.

      [tone down the personal abuse. If you can’t make your point without belittling someone, then you need to rethink what you are doing here – weka]

    • weka 2.2

      This is definitely a problem Manuka.

      In the spirit of micky’s post, we might want to talk about what we can do here on ts. Creating an inclusive space seems important (and by inclusive I don’t mean including trolls or people who belittle others).

      • Manuka AOR 2.2.1

        It’s the diversion that’s the most difficult to deal with, not so much personal insults which are easily ignored. Someone starts a train of thought then the Trumpettes et al skew the discussion and the original point is lost. From the reader’s perspective, the substance is lost.

        It’s fine when they are in their own post -no probs at all when CV, eg, puts up a post and they can all pile on and say what they want there. But in more focussed posts such as this one of MS, – I did not want to see it sabotaged.

  3. Molly 3

    For any other Trews watchers:

    • Carolyn_nth 4.1

      No edit button. My attempt at using tags didn’t work.
      RNZ link:'patron-saint-of-lost-causes'-on-tpp

      Sys the 3rd reading of the TPPA bill will continue on next sitting day. Peter Dunne should be urged not to vote for it.

      Barry Coates link on the need for a new approach to NZ trade agreements.:

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        We definitely need to rethink our ‘trade’ deals as none of them are truly about trade but are for the entrenchment of the failed neo-liberal system. We need to drop out of these FTAs as they’re simply not good for us.

        Much better to point to our standards and say that if another country meets those standards then we’ll trade with them and if they don’t then we won’t. Then we’ll be able to make the laws that we want that are in our best interests and not have to worry about breaking these FTAs that we have.

      • jcuknz 4.1.2

        Surely the big fear was if the TPPA swops America for China ? Could be a sensible move in light of Trump’s attitude to trade.

    • Colonial Viper 4.2

      Continue to oppose the TPPA

      President-elect Trump will sink it. Big win for the left.

      • Molly 4.2.1

        Big win for everyone really, although the right won’t acknowledge it as such.

        • Carolyn_nth

          But why is the NZ government still proceeding with their TPPA enabling bill?

          That’s what I meant by opposing the TPPA: IE oppose NZ’s TPPA bill before parliament, and what Barry Coates said about the way forward with future trade deals:

          Now would be an ideal time to re-think trade negotiations and ensure that trade supports our broader aims, including boosting local economic development and jobs, environmental sustainability and protection of human rights.

          My hope is that with the TPPA dead in the water, we can set about developing a new standard of trade agreements that are truly beneficial.

          In developing future agreements, it is important to note that the Green Party does not agree with President Trump on why we should oppose the TPPA.

      • @CV,…

        Interesting, CV , … that the Left in so many cases either refuse to see that good point , or are so blinded by tribalism they refuse to acknowledge it.

        And after all that Prof Jane Kelsey strived to educate the public about,… it was one of the first things that crossed my mind when Trump one.

        Its just peculiar that he has been labelled neo con , far right,…

        To me, hes more of a conservative nationalist , who by very definition , is anti globalism.

        I’m glad he won at least for those two points alone. As for the rest, well, – he certainly does have some major Archilles faults I will admit , as theres quite a bit that is alarming about him also.

        But then again , drone strikes by Obama isn’t exactly a man of peace as well… particularly in light of Obama who would have known full well that the Clinto Foundation was being used to funnel Saudi Arabian and Quatar currency to buy arms in the USA , then ship them back to support and supply ISIS with weapons, – probably in exchange for cheap oil for the USA as well


        Sheer hypocrisy.

        No wonder the Obama administration did nothing about ISIS , – it was too lucrative a deal for the Secretary of State , and the arms manufacturers to the tune of 80 Billion dollars ( biggest arms deal in history apparently ) .

        So much for murderer Clinton being ‘Left’.

        • Colonial Viper

          I’m preparing something on Trump’s new approach to the Middle East. The chance for the Trump peace dividend that I have been hoping for.

          I remain utterly thankful that neocon hawk Hillary Clinton and her mates Samantha Power, Susan Rice, Victoria Nuland etc. can now all have a happy retirement.

          Fingers crossed though that Bolton does NOT get a position in the new Admin. He’s another Russia hating neocon of the first order.

          • WILD KATIPO

            I was thinking just that myself about Bolton when I read that article in the NZ Herald this afternoon – sounds like a dangerous man.

            Hope he gets bypassed smartly.

      • Stuart Munro 4.2.3

        Nobody knows wtf Trump will do.

        Ask anyone who ever had a contract with him.

      • Jenny 4.2.4

        The sort of trade relationships that Donald Trump supports with other countries is one of imposed US domination.

        Think of TPPA but worse.

        Tougher one sided tariffs, sanctions and trade barriers against us, and other countries with export based economies importing into the US market or even in markets where we compete with the US, like the Middle East where our sheep and beef exports to this region will be squeezed out. Coupled with demands and pressure that we and others open up our markets to total US penetration.

        If you don’t believe me, think of the Wall that Trump says that he will force Mexico to pay for.

        How will Mexico be made to pay for the wall?

        Punishing tarriffs and sanctions slapped on all Mexican imports into the US market. Effectively crushing the Mexican manufacturing and export sector, making Mexico totally dependent on US imports and economic penetration.

        And if you don’t think that this pattern will not be repeated to other export based economies you would be wrong.

        The Japanese car manufacturing industry will be a key target.

        The moves currently being made by the Key government are needed to lay the ground work to open up and prostrate our economy to the new pumped up US hegemon.

        USA, USA, USA

  4. Ad 5

    Alternatively, just go to lots of drinks from now until Christmas, and use the US election as a sly set of talking points about how our own country needs improving.

    I’m going to organise … one bar at a time 😉

  5. james 6

    “The right is in the ascendancy currently in the English speaking Western World with right wing Governments in the US, the UK, Australia and New Zealand”.

    And given that the majority of voters (globally) in our Western World are voting for it – I do not see it changing any time soon.

    The Democrats are in a world of trouble in the US now (Although I do think Michelle Obama could change that).

    In the UK – Corbyn would be decimated in a general election.

    In NZ – Little polls between 25 and 30% with National closing on 50%.

    I don’t see anything to change this any time soon.

    Long may it continue.

    [reread the post, see if you can understand what it is about, and try and comment on topic – weka]

    • chris73 6.1

      I find it interesting that people on here call National hard right but in the USA National would be considered a socialist party (and probably worse)

      WFF, interest free student loans, public health, social welfare…

      • Molly 6.1.1

        WFF – kept begrudgingly because they can’t afford to spook the horses,
        Interest free student loans – accompanied by reductions in available courses, toxic work environments in universities, and increasing costs of living,
        Public health – continues to be dismantled as we type,
        Social welfare – the same, with the implementation of sanctions that have put the already vulnerable in even more precarious positions accompanied with continued encouragement of constant vilification of the poor and disposssessed.

        chris73, is this really the best you can do?

        • chris73

          Grudgingly or not, currently dismantling or not its still policies that National are keeping and not announcing they’ll be removing and that puts National in the center and to the left of the Democtrats

          • Molly

            Disagree with you there chris73.

            Smacks of the type of person who takes credit for other’s good housekeeping and caretaking, while simultaneously eroding the pantry and letting maintenance go.

          • KJT

            National have found that slowly privatising, destroying, defunding and selling assets, slowly behind closed doors while they control the public narrative, keeps voters asleep while they loot the country.

            No more Richardson’s and Brashe’s. Just nice Mr Key, to lull us all with, “nothing to see here”.

            • Rob

              Yet, remarkably the Nats continue to be in Government for all that you KJT and Molly write. I wonder if you really understand what most Kiwis are after.

              Perhaps Brexit & Trump may give you some idea.

              • KJT

                I know that if National were honest about what they were offering they would never be in Government again.
                That was ACT’s mistake. National have much the same loony agenda, but since Brash and Richardson they have become a lot better at hiding it.

                Lying, fudging statistics, dirty politics, and false promises, along with a compliant media are the things that got them in.

    • Roflcopter 6.2

      The Democrats are in a world of trouble in the US now (Although I do think Michelle Obama could change that).

      It will not, and yet again you misunderstand how deep the feeling is with middle America… they’ll look at Ms Obama and go “No thanks, we just voted out the establishment, and we don’t want it back any time soon”.

      • joe90 6.2.1

        No thanks, we just voted out the establishment, and we don’t want it back any time soon”.

        The map below and the people shoulder tapped by Trump makes me doubt it was the establishment they voted out.

        The shift in white America between 2004 and 2012, and 2012 to 2016— Nate Cohn (@Nate_Cohn) November 10, 2016

  6. Siobhan 7

    Funny thing, a Trump supporter on the radio this morning explaining that they are conservative socially, but that also means they are traditionally very very strong in their support for Unions.

    Something that has been pretty much destroyed by our/their so called Liberal Progressive Leaders.

    It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
    Good chance that Trump supporters of the working class variety may find they have just been used, but on the other hand just imagine if he does hold to some promises like creating jobs within America, especially in the urgently needed infrastructure area. And b) image (and it’s a big call) but imagine a rise in American Unionism.

    Of course this ain’t going to happen, or at least it won’t be Government led, if he cuts Corporate Tax, but, well, I guess we shall just have to wait and see.

    • Pete 7.1

      Can I envisage Apple, Nike, et al moving to the States so Americans can be employed?
      Good old Americans working long hours on pittance wages? And the infrastructure improvements meaning better roads to move the goods around? The stuff of dreams and the stuff of massive reality checks.

      Making America great again? Indeed, we shall just have to wait and see.

      • Siobhan 7.1.1

        They won’t.
        But then who wants to work for a company that requires suicide nets to catch ‘jumpers’.
        But that’s a bigger issue than American Politics. I noticed an article about increased automation in China because companies are complaining that Chinese workers are getting to uppity in their wage demands.

        Personally I suspect the Future for many of us will be slave like conditions under Totalitarian Fascist or Corporate Governments.
        And Trump could easily go that way…hence the chill attitude of the markets.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Personally I suspect the Future for many of us will be slave like conditions under Totalitarian Fascist or Corporate Governments.

          Under capitalism that’s exactly what it will be. A capitalist system needs oppression to keep the few rich at everyone else’s expense.

  7. Richard Rawshark 8

    Micky S, would labour have congradulated, Hussain, Gadafi, Amin or Hitler or any other bigot who used racism to divide to win? Or is it ok because he’s POTUS now? Or that the USA is somehow exempt from being held to a standard, we would expect anywhere else?

    IMHO you should have stood with Metiria and the greens on this not just because of her climate stance alone, and if we have a memorandum of understanding, and we want to ride with the greens to form a left block that can out National, hadn’t we all better see some actual tough calls and then unity?

    Me i’m not impressed and I pay my labour due’s. It is a god dang principle.

    If something is not right it’s a political party representing the people that should speak on our behalf, in the coming days are you that sure you will be on the right side of history and this will not come back to bite those parties that congradulated him later?
    Have you even thought about the future and his , agenda?

    What will you say to the Siouxx nation? we are sorry? We had too?

    [micky writes as himself not as a representative of any political party. This is true of all authors except where they declare their party connection. – weka]

    • Ad 8.1

      Neither MickeySavage nor New Zealand Labour represent any tribe in South Dakota, no matter how you spell it.

      Mickey is trying to get focus back on local activism, rather than riding the froth of some temporary emotional wave.

      Which is the right thing to do.

  8. weka 9

    “Be decent, kind, respectful. Get to know your neighbour and build your community.”

    I’d like to see that happen here on ts.

    Regarding mourning, I think people need to grieve and that if they don’t it can cause problems, so how about Mourn AND Organise. They’re not mutually exclusive 🙂

  9. Whispering Kate 10

    We are as much to blame, each and every one of us for the way the world is heading, we have no point of difference at the voting booths so we either stay away or vote for a rank outsider who has his ear to the ground and hears what the majority of the world are angry about – not the 1 or 2% who run the show. The choice we have to vote for is enough to leave people at home. Hilary was a crooked as a U-bend and everybody knew it – we only get what we sow, the Democrats put up the wrong candidate and Labour here can learn from this – there is people power out there to be harnessed in huge numbers who will punish Labour if they don’t give the left a point of difference to vote for.

    What I find hard to fathom is why there is so much hatred in the world, for each other, for the poor, the homeless, for women, the sick and vulnerable and hatred for the wealthy who are so far removed from reality that they just don’t care or think about the unfortunate 98%. There is no perfect solution to this terrible mess the world is in but there has to be a far better one than huge disparities between those who live well and long and those who struggle from birth and live desperate and shorter lives.

    We obviously do not read history from hundreds of centuries ago and learn from it, rebellions, uprisings, kings disposed and beheaded, revolutions which culled out entire upper aristocrasies – the human being hasn’t changed and will always mobilise and do what ever it can to show their anger at this imbalance in living standards – it showed with the UK with Brexit, and the US with P.E.Trump.

    None of us have the answer to this situation we are now heading into but I can foresee violence and uprisings in the future if this huge disparity is not levelled out – its just pure logic, none of us likes being taken for a sucker. “Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose” Janis sure knew how to tell it.

    • aerobubble 10.1

      Was a time where there were choices. But as fuel costs go up, and obvious automatization of work, and consumer tracking, old patterns of choice are barred, costly, or worse controlled for value adding data brokers.

      Freedom is disappearing. Rural whites, suburban women, they are losing control of their lives. People cornered lash out. Controlling liberals and conservatives have vast stats to beat us around with, in new ways.

      How do you get ahead when every opportunity to has a person waiting with large amounts of cash to capitaluze off it, and the skill and connections to. Whether a business idea, or buying a loaf of bread and raising the price by the time you get to the cashier.

      The days of freedom, of choice, of personal space are numbered.

  10. rsbandit 11

    Attack politics doesn’t work. Dirty Politics. Planet Key. Key is a big pooh-pooh head.

    Learn from the US result.

    An attack on Key is an attack on his voters. If you attack his voters then they are hardly going to listen to you, are they. Considering them stupid or gullible is an attack and, as we saw with Brexit, doesn;t work, either.

    The Greens have fallen into the same predictable hole in parliament yesterday.

    Climb out of the hole
    Be positive
    Talk to and with those who currently vote for the other team
    Understand them
    Appeal to them

    • Siobhan 11.1

      I used to encounter this on The Guardian. The biggest arguments I had were with the Global Warming crowd..and I AGREED with them.
      But their arrogance, vitriol and general dismissal of anyone commenting who didn’t understand, condemned us to never get anywhere.

      You can’t spread the word by saying F-off to the very people who you think will benefit from your message.

      (Personally I just BLEEP over any references to God and Jesus and it works for me.)

    • joe90 11.2

      Yes, we should all climb out of the hole and be positive, talk to and with those who currently vote for the other team, understand them, appeal to them because that’s what the Trump campaign did, right?.

      • rsbandit 11.2.1

        If you really do think the left didn’t create the environment that enabled Trump, watch and learn.

        The Standard and left in general would do well to heed that message.

      • rsbandit 11.2.2

        Trump appealed to people who would normally vote Democrat. He told them Washington was the problem, and he talked about the jobs they wanted.

        • joe90

          Repopulating Washington with his own people, the dismantling of federal banking and financial industry regulations, the undoing of a myriad of federal programmes via the wingnut state’s rights road, the probable appointment of a Wall Street insider head to Treasury and huge tax cuts for the 1% is what people voted for.

          • rsbandit

            That may be teh result, but it wasn’t the message. Trump understood who he was talking to and what they wanted to hear.

            Clinton did not. Totally out of touch.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Being totally out of touch, she only got 26% of the vote. What do you say about the guy who got 25% of the vote?

              Perhaps now would be a good time to accept personal responsibility for dribbling all over your bib.

      • Siobhan 11.2.3

        One way to look at it is Trump didn’t Win so much as Hillary Lost (it was a even split 25% of the population voted for Hillary, 25% for Trump)…and she didn’t lose because she was ‘Too Positive’..she lost because she didn’t understand or empathise with the real lives and feelings of the people.

    • Carolyn_nth 11.3

      I’m for being positive – especially showing where we stand on matters of principle and policy. The left does a lot of this, but it very often gets undermined in the media, and by the right of politics.

      And correction needed: the NACTs have a very sophisticated attack politics machine. That’s what Hager’s books have been about. The left just doesn’t do the sneaky two track dirty politics (as defined by Hager).

      Trump was extremely into negative personal attack campaigning vs Clinton.

      Sanders and Corbyn, though, do show a positive approach – what they are for, and what they are against, rather than personal attack politics of the Trump campaign.

      Elizabeth Warren does a very engaging form of both attack and positive politics.

      • rsbandit 11.3.1

        There is no sophisticated attack machine. It’s just dumb confrontational politics as usual. Hager’s book was rubbish and achieved nothing. It should have just been called “Politics”. Your opposition disagrees with you and says so? Ohh, that’s sophisticated, isn’t it.

        Books like that are part of the problem, not the solution.

        The left have good values. Values aligned with what many people want. Talk positively about them to people who don’t currently vote for them.

        • Carolyn_nth

          Well, those “dumb confrontational politics” do work for the NACTs and Trump. When Labour and the Greens try to put forward positive policies: housing, work, etc, they get attacked.

          Addressing those who don’t vote, or don’t vote left is a puzzle that many of us have contemplated. The right have done a very good job of demonising a lot of potential left voters.

          When the left addresses their causes – poverty, low incomes, etc, it often doesn’t gain that much traction. It did post WWII. The puzzle is how to engage a wide spectrum of people with fair and inclusive policies and values. It needs a massive culture shift.

          It needs a return to more of a public service media. Trump is the creation of reality TV infotainment values that have a strong hold on the corporate media.

        • One Anonymous Bloke


          Apart from seeing the back of Jason Ede, dealing a solid blow to Judith Collins’ political career, major changes at the SIS, a strong precedent set re: S.68 of the Evidence Act, and the ongoing investigation into John Phillip Key’s contacts with Cameron Slater, what has Nicky Hager ever done for us?

          • rsbandit

            Thought the aim was to win the election.

            “When Labour and the Greens try to put forward positive policies: housing, work, etc, they get attacked.”

            That’s politics. A war of ideas. What do you expect?

            “The right have done a very good job of demonising a lot of potential left voters.”

            Tell me again how the left characterise right wing voters? In glowing terms?

            “The puzzle is how to engage a wide spectrum of people with fair and inclusive policies and values.”

            It’s not much of a puzzle. Key has worked it out. NZers don’t want “fair and inclusive”. Those are meaningless political terms. They want to aspire, earn sufficient money, feel safe and have a nice life.

            • Carolyn_nth

              That’s a very blanket statement about “New Zealanders” in general. In the past Kiwis have wanted a fair and inclusive society. Many still do.

              And yes, many people want a reasonable income, security, and a reasonable life. that doesn’t exclude fairness and inclusiveness.

              “Aspire” is pretty meaningless. It’s part of the shift via corporate media to some dominant US values.

              It’s no accident that, in Key’s term public service media has all been killed off – freeze on funding to RNZ; axing of Campbell Live.

              This has been brought about by a network of very powerful and wealthy people and organisations.

              But recent overseas elections have shown, many people want to embrace different values – Sanders, Corbyn, etc. And lots of Kiwis have given up voting. The percentage of people of voting age who voted for NACT aspirational society, was below 50%.

              So, I’d look more to Corbyn and Sanders, etc for a different message and values.

              • rsbandit

                You will meet no-one who won’t agree to the question “do you want a fair and inclusive society”? They will all say yes, regardless of who they vote for.

                But what does it actually mean?

                Nothing. It’s abstraction.

                What they really want is a decent job, a decent house, money left over at the end of the week, a future for their kids and a pleasant, healthy life. They want better than they have now. That’s what I mean by “aspire”. You will find no one who wants to be worse off.

                And therein lies the problem with “fair”. Is it “fair” that a worker has more and more tax taken off them so that someone who chooses not to work receives more?

                Depends who you talk to, doesn’t it. The recipient will deem it fair. The worker may not.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Is it “fair” that a worker has more and more tax taken off them so that someone who chooses not to work receives more?

                  No, it’s a vicious lie. Why do you tell them?

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Thought the aim was to win the election.

              What a lovely dishonest weasel smear you have there. Do you tell yourself lies a lot?

              Nicky Hager is not a Green/Labour proxy.

          • Chuck

            “what has Nicky Hager ever done for us?”

            By “us” I assume the left of centre?

            Hager helped National to a 3rd term via the public reaction to his book. If it had any traction, Labour would not of had its worst election result in 92 years. And Nationals their best since 1951.

            Lets hope for the left’s shake, Hager’s 2017 edition is better received 🙂

            • Chuck

              Can’t edit…shake = sake.

            • Stuart Munro

              No mate – that was Whaleoil and the penguin and the mysterious Mr Ede.

              Key played dirty and bought the media so they wouldn’t call him on it.

              Corruption. Own it.

              • rsbandit

                Don’t stop believin’

                Conspiracy theory is not going to help you. Making more of an effort to understand, engage and support the needs of opposition voters will.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Your assumption is wrong. By “us” I mean people who respect human rights and the rule of law – the vast majority, left and right.

    • Gabby 11.4

      No the Key is to get the Dirty Key, Key the Crook, Lock up and throw away the Key message across. Nasty man. Very nasty man.

    • Stuart Munro 11.5

      Tell us again that Trump didn’t use attack politics. Then read it yourself and think about it.

  11. s y d 12

    “so much of the shit I see has been perpetuated by successive governments from both ends of the spectrum”

    Thats a fucken narrow spectrum. Red or Blue, elephant or donkey.

  12. pat 13

    It may be worth considering the phrase “progressive left” when seeking position for the opposition parties in NZ… described in the following article and alluded to this morning by Robert Reich on RNZ this morning automatically ascribing progressive ideals to the left may well be a gross error.

    While the NZ experience is less extreme and has inherent moderating factors there is much that is relevant from both these musings that apply, particularly to Labour’s apparent difficulties.

  13. Corokia 14

    Excellent post MS, thank you for sharing the positive comments that your friend wrote.

    Tiny little niggle with the graphic (sorry if this is over-sensitive) I know this “keep calm” thing is a popular meme, but maybe some clever person could re do it and lose the crown. A symbol of aristocratic privilege doesn’t fit with the sentiment of the words beneath it.

  14. joe90 15

    Someone over at Kos is remarkably optimistic.

    I posted this over on my Facebook page and I’d like to share it here:

    After mourning Trump’s victory, I took the opportunity to think things through and I suddenly saw a big silver lining for Democrats. Politics is like a game of chess. Trump’s victory last night may have put the Democrats in a stronger position going forward than if Hillary had won. Here’s why I’m saying this:

    If Hillary had become president on the heels of Obama’s two terms, the Democrats would be in a very vulnerable position in the next two major elections: the 2018 midterms and the 2020 general election. Democrats would likely suffer heavy losses in the 2018 midterms due to historical precedent (the party that wins the White House usually does poorly in the following midterm elections) and sheer voter fatigue. However, with Donald Trump in the White House the tables are turned and Republicans are the ones who will be in a defensive position in 2018 as they now control both the White House and Congress and will have to give full account of their agenda and results to voters. In this scenario, Democrats are likely to make significant gains in the 2018 midterm elections.

    Then building on that, Republicans will again be on the defensive in the 2020 general election with Trump in the White House. The core of Republican policy is set up to hurt the working and middle classes and benefit the rich and powerful. Ironically, these are the same working class people who voted for Trump. They will inevitably feel disappointed over the next four years as they realize that Trump can’t magically solve their problems.

    Going into 2020 Republicans will face die-hard opposition from Democrats, a likely disillusioned white working class GOP base (the manufacturing jobs are never coming back) and an even more diverse electorate than today. All these factors will put them in a very weak position in that election. If Hillary had won this year, Democrats would be the ones on the defensive.

    2020 is just the year that Democrats need to win. The next US census takes place that year and that is also when the next congressional districts will be redrawn. Democrats can use their electoral gains in 2020 to Gerrymander Republicans out of the House of Representatives and regain full control of Congress, and lock in their majority for a decade or more.

    Also a Democratic President elected in 2020 is more likely to serve two terms, than if Hillary had won this year (one of my biggest concerns with Hillary winning this year is that she would not be re-elected in 2020 due to voter fatigue; it’s unlikely Americans would allow one party to control the White House for 4 terms).

    With a Democratic President elected in 2020 serving two potential terms (and a Democratic Congress behind him/her), Democrats would have wide sway to reshape the Supreme Court, and neutralize most of the destruction that would come with Trump’s one term in office. All this would be less likely if Democrats had retained the White House in this election.

    Sometimes the biggest disappointments in life can turn out to be the biggest opportunity.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this.

  15. Scott 17

    A part of getting organised will need to be a bit of introspection.

    The Left generally needs to understand that Trump is as mush their outcome as it is that of the right, probably more. A significant reason he won was that a chuck of the population were just sick and tired of being told what they can and cannot say and do. Some of that feeling might be valid, some not, but it would be a silly politician that ignores it.

  16. Michael 18

    Let’s deselect the entire Labour Party caucus and start again by choosing people who are authentically progressive and committed to social justice, rather than neoliberal fellow-travellers.

  17. The International Democratic Union is a far Right Organization ,Present
    Chairman is John Key,. As chairman of that organization he congratulated
    Trump on “his fine win’ . Past chairs of this organization have been some of the worst Right-

    • addition to above.
      Members of the ID U have included some of the nastiest Right-Wingers ever ,Past Chair was tax-dodger Lord Ashcroft.

      Membership of such an organization requires one to be very right-wing so you who think National members are not far Right need to have a look at comments and mates of the Nat’s.


      • Whispering Kate 19.1.1

        I often wonder why there isn’t more disclosure of this information about Key and his Chairmanship of the International Democratic Union – a far right organisation. Of course he is far right, he just doesn’t project this to a stupid electorate who think he is a good guy, a good Kiwi bloke. His heart and life is far right and the US – of course it goes without saying he would congratulate Trump; for a “fine win”. This country walk around with blinkers on.

  18. Stuart Munro 20

    Some mourning may not altogether out of place, Homer thought mourning was important.

  19. Paul 21

    Jonathan Pie thinks he knows who is to blame for the rise of Trump…and you’re not going to like it!

  20. The New Student 22

    So yeah to get back to the original post. In a nutshell: be the change you wish to see?

    Who was it who said that

  21. Stuart Munro 23

    Before we start to buy the storm of lies spread by Trump supporters and those who have their own axes to grind, I think some reflection is in order.

    None of the major commentators seem to be pointing the finger at the folk who actually won the election for Trump.

    It was the FBI. By going public without the grounds to prosecute, the FBI created this result. There was not, nor would there ever have been grounds to prosecute. It was as much of a legal travesty as the Lewinski impeachment process.

    The FBI broke their own procedural rules to fix the election. They decided to be praetorians.

    • Colonial Viper 23.1

      Trump destroyed the Democrats blue fire wall. The Democrats chose an awful status quo candidate to run in a change election; one with unfavourable ratings through the roof. Then tried to shame people into voting for her.

      But yeah, the FBI.

    • Macro 23.2

      That is very true.
      And we should remember that this was an exceedingly low turnout of voters only around 25% of the voting population actually voted for Trump and a little more voted for Clinton and the rest (around 50%) stayed home – or were unable for many reasons to vote
      The ones voting for Trump were more incentivised to do so – I call their response radical reactionary voting rather than right wing, because they are acting impulsively and reacting against something that they perceived to be contrary to their best interests. (Gun laws, anti trade – particularly Chinese imports, and the few idiots who think AGW is just a hoax – unfortunately far too many of them still around in the US) This is unfortunately a normal human response, but they will change their opinion soon enough when the experience the results. Higher health charges, reduced public education expenditure, and a growing public deficit that they – the tax payers will be forced to bear because the wealthy (and in particular Trump) will be paying nothing.
      The FBI meddling and the constant lies and innuendo from Trump meant many just stayed away, and that was to their detriment. Had another 1% bothered to vote the result may have been very different.

      • Colonial Viper 23.2.1

        A weak compromised candidate who could not connect with people was most of the problem.

        The true story about what the hell Comey was doing – and why – is going to be very interesting when it comes out years from now.

  22. Jenny 24

    “Don’t mourn organise.”

    One thing we could all do in the face of resurgent and dangerous US international Triumphalism, especially in the wake of the Trump victory. Is to preserve our internationally respected independent foreign policy, is to do our best to protest the return of US warships to New Zealand ports.

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