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Labour leadership campaign – day two

Written By: - Date published: 7:57 am, September 1st, 2013 - 235 comments
Categories: labour - Tags:

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Following on from a suggestion by Weka (update: and Te Reo Putake) this is a fresh post on today’s Labour candidates meetings.

There are two meetings scheduled.  These will show off the diversity of Auckland.

The first will be in Otahuhu and draw on membership from South Auckland which is the powerhouse of Labour support.  The meeting will have labour members and also Service and Food Worker affiliate members.  The SFWU is apportioning its support by allowing members to have a direct vote.  This is by far the most democratic way for the unions to decide how much support they will be giving to each of the members.  Expect the meeting to be Pacifica dominated and for there to be music and lots of laughter.

The second will be in Western Springs in the Auckland Central electorate.  I expect this to be a more subdued and possibly tenser meeting.

Details of the meetings are as follows:

Otahuhu Event Centre, 31C Atkinson Avenue, Otahuhu at 3 pm

Western Springs College Hall, Motions Road, Western Springs at 7 pm.

People entitled to attend include members, former members as long as they sign up again and new members who sign up at the door.

Media can attend but for the preliminaries and the speeches only.

If you are going you should get to the meeting early as there will be a vetting process and this could take some time.  People should bring their membership cards or ortherwise photo ID so that they can be identified.  Photos and social media can be taken and used during the open part of the meeting.

UPDATE:  Just a reminder that current members and those who have been financial members of the Party sometime between January 1 2011 and August 22 2013 but have not yet paid their membership for 2013 can renew their membership and vote, so long as they do so before 12.00am on Friday 6 September. This can be done by clicking here.  New members will not be able to vote.  H/t Lanthanide.

235 comments on “Labour leadership campaign – day two ”

  1. Linz 1

    It’s only day two of the leadership primary and already the MSM are reaching deep into their drawers for emotive, negative language:
    Rivals’ costly vows lure votes – The pork barrels have been rolled out in the Labour Party leadership battle,
    C’mon politicians, make my day – even though he will never be Prime Minister, he will want to stay leader of the Labour Party… he is the leader of a dying party
    Labour’s lose-lose-lose strategy
    Gloves off in Labour battle
    On the panic register I would rate that 8 out of ten and rising.
    Please, please, Labour, don’t balls it up!

    • Paul 1.1

      What a dreadful media we have!
      Owned by corporates.
      The Labour Party must challenge that bs narrative.

      • Dem Young Sconies 1.1.1


        A future Labour / Green coalition really needs to address the horrible bias of right-wing corporate media. Kicking out foreign owned organisations would be a good start.

      • Boadicea 1.1.2

        Cunliffe is the only Labour candidate that can and will challenge the narrative set by the conservative elements.

        Grant Robertson is a conservative.
        When Parkers’s Power NZ plan was announced Robertson instantly jumped in to re-assure the owners of capital that no more policies like that would be forthcoming.
        Labour must not allow him in.

        • Hami Shearlie

          Exactly! And all his talk at the moment strongly suggesting he is going to the left doesn’t match what he said publicly, when he wasn’t standing for the leadership – Which statement do we think is more likely to be his real gut feeling??

          • Puddleglum

            Another interesting thing about Robertson’s current assertions is that he has been Deputy Leader over a period that David Shearer, on reflection, believed so deficient in effect on Labour’s performance that it required him to resign. Does Robertson take no responsibility over the lack of impact of Labour during Shearer’s tenure, despite being Deputy Leader?

            Is it believable that Robertson was, during that period, unable to have any (positive) influence over Shearer and the party’s direction and promotion, given that Shearer was not exactly the epitome of a seasoned and experienced politician with a clear sense of his own ideological convictions?

            What does Robertson think about his tenure as Deputy Leader? Does he rate it as a great success for Labour? If so, why?

        • Neoleftie

          Not so much as conservative but cautious by nature and more likely to favour authority or holders of authority.

          • Chrissy

            Sorry guys that’s just rubbish: Grant is genuine left: trust me.

            • Neoleftie

              Left of what Chrissy.
              Left of key or Shane jones?
              his heart might be on the left side but who see that…

              • Chrissy

                Have a look at what he’s saying about living wages… in fact his whole labour relations policy. Then child poverty and inequality. Then about being over neoliberalism and the third way. Then find and ask people who know him well, if that’s a possibility. I’m certain people will be willing to talk more on this.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Why did Grant promise the corporate fraternity that Labour would not intervene in any more markets?

                  • McFlock

                    he didn’t

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Of course he did. The NBR and other business papers reported on it.

                    • karol

                      Did. As stated here.

                      Labour Party deputy leader Grant Robertson has moved to try and reassure financial markets that its sudden lurch to favour central planning in the electricity industry is one-off.

                      In a statement attacking Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce, Mr Robertson says: “Labour makes no apology for stepping in to fix problems in the electricity sector. But this is not a signal that Labour is going to intervene elsewhere in the economy.

                      “As we said on the day we launched NZ Power, we have no plans to intervene in any other markets.”

                    • McFlock

                      Karol, that’s not a promise that labour will not intervene in any other markets. That’s at statement that they currently have no plans to.

                      I have no plans to enter politics. That is not a promise to never do so.
                      I don’t even have any plans to go to the toilet this evening. That is not a promise that I won’t, however.

                      I find it funny that both the cunliffes and the tories choose to wilfully misinterpret that statement by Robertson, but the cetacean does so to claim he’s a liar and you guys do it to claim he’s a tory suckup.

                    • karol

                      McFlock – your interpretation is a stretch – a little wriggle room, but not what looks like the main intent. And your interpretation just makes GR sound slippery.

                    • McFlock

                      my interpretation is exactly what the words mean. Not even in a particularly pedantic way, either.

                      If stating that one has no current plans to do something is actually a promise to not do it, then pretty much everyone on the planet is a damned liar.

                    • karol

                      GR is quoted as saying this:

                      But this is not a signal that Labour is going to intervene elsewhere in the economy.

                      Before he made the next slippery qualification. It’s perfectly clear what he is meaning there, McFlock. He is appeasing the coporate elites.

                    • McFlock

                      He is appeasing the corporate elites.

                      Well, taking the edge off tory scaremongering. Ask yourself: was he after the corporate vote, or was he simply limiting the amount of dancing cossacks key could threaten the electorate with next year?

                      And it falls light years short of a promise to not intervene in any other market.

                  • Neoleftie

                    No he stated they have no plans other than the power market.didnt rule anything out just was a politician and itself shadows and mirrors

                    • billbrowne

                      “…we have no plans to intervene in any other markets.”

                      Come on mate, that’s pretty unequivocal.

                    • McFlock

                      nope. it’s a fact. No other policies have yet been announced. Probably not even written.
                      Doesn’t mean they can’t be, though. even in the next year.

                • karol

                  And social security? State housing?

                  And I’ve seen plenty of comments from people who have had dealings with GR – ain’t flattering.

                  GR can make good speeches. But he doesn’t really sound like he’s campaigning for the struggling poor. He trots out lots of glob and general phrases from is comfortable perch.

                  He’s got something to contribute to a team. Not the leader to take on Key.

                  • Neoleftie

                    I tend to agree karol.
                    No social development portfolio for grant as he doesn’t have the humanity for it but he does have an social compass based on social democratic or progressive leanings of what we could call the middle class left, but who cares as long as cunliffe is finance minister and the caucus is unified behind the front team.

                • karol

                  Cunliffe made bolder statements on labour relations, poverty, inequality, end of neoliberalism etc well before Robertson did. GR’s only gone more boldly when he’s seen Cunliffe get some traction for it in the leadership contest. Cunliffe also more bold on state assets policies etc.

                  GR – solid front bencher. Not a leader for the country.

                  • Neoleftie

                    Or has the party power structure shifted to the left and this has allowed GR to speak more honestly.

                  • Bill

                    For what it’s worth, based on the evidence I’m aware of, Grant has essentially got a bob each way bet.

                    Unlike for Cunliffe, there are no speeches referring to his personal opinion on neo-liberalism, or giving an indication of his thoughts on the environment etc. (Maybe it was those published opinions by Cunliffe that spooked some in the caucus and led to his being ‘shut down’?)

                    Meanwhile, Robertson did not, as far as I’m aware, attempt to steer Shearer left. In fact, he seems to have been content to sit and do nothing…allowing the leader he was a deputy to, to blunder while staying cozy with still dominant ‘old guard’. (I can’t be bothered to link atm, but I recall a post by Irish that essentially highlighted a coup by Robertson some time back [from before conference] that was abandoned)

                    Anyway, in essence I think Robertson has the kind of conviction that will bend with the wind. So, in a caucus that was leaning left, Robertson would be left. And in a caucus that tacked right, Robertson would tack right.

                    I’m not saying that’s necessarily a bad thing. Some might say it displays a degree of pragmatism. But at a time when we need a Labour leader who has some heart felt conviction to break with neo-liberal orthodoxy (and more besides), Robertson just isn’t the right person.

                    • Neoleftie

                      I remember GR old website being deepest red with all these obscure symbols. Took me ages to find the meaning of even a few lol.

                    • veutoviper

                      Good comment, Bill. It pretty much sums up my perceptions of Grant Robertson.

                      Yesterday when I clicked on a comment to read, the system did one of its “time warp” things* and took me back to this post in Sept 2012 on Robertson and those living on sickness entitlements.

                      To the Back Teeth. And Beyond

                      It was a timely reminder to me – and others may be interested in rereading this post just one year ago.

                      Not criticism as it happens very rarely and when it does, I have invariably profited from the experience of reading some really good older posts.

            • karol


  2. Jenny Kirk 2

    And Monday’s meeting will be held in Whangarei – at Forum North – beside the city library – in Rust Avenue, Whangarei. Powhiri starts at 6pm. The meeting will go on until 8.30pm.

  3. Lanthanide 3

    This should state that new members that sign up won’t be eligible to vote in the race.

  4. Linz 4

    About the right-wing press, in the comments sections I’m saying to political commentators: “Are you willing to put your money where you’re mouth is? Are you prepared to resign if you’re proven wrong?”

  5. fender 5

    Yes the suggestion by Te Reo Putake for a new post was a good one.

    There’s lots of interest in this campaign and it’s great to see.

    • QoT 5.1

      I’m hoping lprent will give us a report after the election on the impact the contest is having on The Standard’s pageviews.

  6. lurgee 6

    Colin Espiner gave Cunliffe a good write up the other day (http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/blogs/bull-dust/9092256/David-Cunliffe-is-Labours-top-dog) and there was a good write up on the Levin meeting on Stuff (http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9109508/Labours-wannabe-leaders-front-up). Weird how this narrative of ‘MSM’ (stupid term) emerged. It’s knee-jerk paranoia. The media has no friends or allegiances. It’s a feral beast that can only be placated with regular offers of red, bloody meat.

    • Paul 6.1

      No the media has no right wing bias at all.
      The fact that it is owned by large corporations means that they take no interest at all.
      Take the blue pill.

    • Colonial Viper 6.2

      The media has no friends or allegiances.

      Weird statement. Perhaps you mean apart from Murdoch using his media corporation to change governments and unseat politicians he did not like, or Mediaworks being soft on National after receiving a soft loan from their long time mate Joyce, I’m sure you are correct.

      • lurgee 6.2.1

        I’d have thought that rather proved my point. Murdoch effectively destroyed the Major government in Britain in the 90s, then turned on Gordon Brown when it suited his self interest to support David Cameron. In New Zealand, they played their part in crushing Bill English, and then in promoting John Key. Media owners have no abiding interest in supporting anyone who threatens them, and closer to the ground, the organs themselves have no interest other than getting a bloody, red meat story out there. They will turn on Key the moment it suits them. It’s a measure of how strong Key is that they have not already done so. Labour have failed to provide them with an interesting story beyond the protracted psychodrama of leadership, so the media have had no interest in presenting anything else.

        • Akldnut

          It’s a measure of how strong Key is

          Bullshit! It was a measure of how how he wasn’t held to task by weak Labour leaders and MPs.
          It’s time for a clean out and invigoration, I heard a former Labour MP at Western Springs Husting saying he/she was retired from politics and that it’s time a few others in Labour’s caucus did the same.

  7. Colonial Viper 7

    Oram comes out strongly for Cunliffe for economic leadership

    Next year’s election must be fought over economic leadership and management. Too many problems are piling up, too much damage is being done, and too many opportunities are being squandered for complacency to rule.

    But we’ll get a vigorous debate and a change of direction only if voters understand what’s at stake, business leaders are honest about their worries about National, and Labour chooses an economically literate leader.

    Don’t be fooled by current growth. It will peak at 2.7 per cent in the year ending next March, then fall to 2 per cent in 2015 and 1.1 per cent in 2016, the Reserve Bank forecasts.

    This is not a cyclical downturn. Our overseas trading partners’ growth will keep motoring along at about 3.5 per cent to 4 per cent a year.


    • Ant 7.1

      Interesting to see what today’s feint leftward to neutralise Cunliffe will be.

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.1

        yeah, stay on the look out for that. Also stay on the look out for the hordes of tweeny Young Labour in the crowd who have not thought through what it will take to beat National next year.

    • Huginn 7.2

      Small problem here – Cunnliffe definitely has the chops for Finance – but he can’t be both Finance and PM . . . SURELY!!!!!!!!

      That said – Robertson and Cunnliffe are both excellent candidates and I would struggle to choose.

      • Colonial Viper 7.2.1

        Yeah it would be unlikely he would be both. That would be a giant role with a lot of responsibility, probably too much.

        Even if he had both Parker and Norman as Associate Finance it would be a lot to bite off.

      • Clement Pinto 7.2.2

        That a PM can’t also be the Finance Minister is not quite true, though rare. It simply depends on one’s ability and expertise. Muldoon of NZ was one. Mahathir Mohamad of Malaysia was another….for example.

    • RedBaron CV 7.3

      Good to see. There was considerable “criticism” on the business pages of Nact before the last election so I thought it would be close and it was. Also when Labour came in in 2000, there was a lot in the media from business leaders who clearly didn’t subscribe to the Round Table.

    • Olwyn 7.4

      Oram’s piece underlines the fact that Cunliffe does not pose a threat to the economy per se. Instead he poses a threat to the unbridled licence that certain people are currently enjoying.

    • lurgee 7.5

      More evidence of that MSM bias?!

    • Saarbo 7.6

      I hope Hooten reads Oram’s article very carefully. National do not have a growth strategy. Our increasing reliance on exports to China is a real threat.

      This is a must read.

  8. chris 8

    I have to admit to reading Michael Laws pieces at Stuff from time to time, shame on me I know.

    Todays effort” Laws: Cunliffe was never one of us” is quite a good read.

    I’m not sure good is the appropriate word, I was rather surprised that Laws actually found something positive to say in regard to another human being.

    • Huginn 8.1

      No shame on you for reading Michael Laws – he is a gifted essayist.
      Shame on Laws for wasting his talent on toxic crap. That guy needs to stop and think about what he wants to be remembererd for.

      • Alanz 8.1.1

        Laws to be remembered for: waste of oxygen.

      • Murray Olsen 8.1.2

        Laws wastes skin as well as oxygen. I met him in person at the beginning of his political career and found him repulsively creepy. It was obvious that he was so far up himself that becoming egocentric would be an improvement. He has the sort of sleazy revolting presence that I have only seen elsewhere with sexual offenders (obviously not a diagnosis). I’ll be happy when he disappears from the scene altogether.

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      To be fair, David was never really one of us. For a start, he was married to Karen and the conventional wisdom was that anyone who was married as a youthful undergraduate was strange. There was so much unattached horizontal bungy-jumping on offer … what’s with that?

      And then there was David’s style. He was, well, ever so slightly old-fashioned. Whether it was the upbringing by his clerical father, or some innate belief that a three-piece suit is its own reward, David was just . . . mature. A young old fogey.

      But two things that debating David had – and possesses still – stood out more.

      First, a clear ambition. I say “clear” because he knew what he wanted to do, when, and the day of the week it was going to occur. We had rough ideas of where we wanted to go – David had the GPS co-ordinates.

      Second, he had a sense of rhetorical bombast. A belief that the old speaking skills – as much owed to Disraeli as David Lange – still had their place. Even if it was all over the place.

      David Cunliffe quotes Micky Joseph Savage as if he’s just come off the phone to him. His leadership campaign launch was pure pre-War – it only required the crackle of radio static.


      • bad12 8.2.1

        Well if Laws does not like David Cunliffe that in itself is probably a good enough reason to give Cunliffe even more support,

        Actually very clever stuff from Cunliffe, we are as Cunliffe said going through the same form of economic destruction seen in the times of Micheal Joseph Savage and while our material comforts and Savages welfare system may be to a certain extent providing us somewhat more shelter from the storm than what was afforded people in the time of Savage, we certainly cannot simply carry on as if nothing has occurred,

        The contrast right there was stark when compared to both the other candidates view of the past politician they most admired, both Jones and Robertson chose Norm Kirk, and dare i say i scoffed mightily at the mere suggestion that they would lead a Kirk style Government,(which admittedly both carefully avoided suggesting),

        Grant Robertson when invoking the Government of Norm Kirk simply leaned on the Kirk Governments anti-nuclear stance which according to Grant ‘put us on the World stage’

        The narrative running through my mind as Grant said this was a ‘scoffing’ but it wont put a State House roof over the working poor’s heads nor food on the table this ‘world stage’,

        Jones was even worse with His emotive little tear jerk of having witnessed Norm Kirk hand in hand with a little girl at a Waitangi celebration,

        i forlornly waited for the interviewer to ask both Jones and Robertson whether they would be likely to give all beneficiaries an extra benefit payment at Christmas as the Kirk Government had, alas the question was not asked and a ‘television magic moment’ was lost,

        i score the weekends television exchanges thus, ‘The Nation’, all three seemed a bit flat and strangely Jones if you didn’t already know His politics and the party leadership He was contesting could appeal, pretty much equal points to all 3 candidates,

        Q&A, to me definitely a Cunliffe win, He started to open up a bit more, i liked His line that monies from emissions tax should be used in the regions to plant marginal lands, and He also scored another point with a growl that a Government He lead would regulate what ‘needed’ to be regulated,

        Jones and Robertson, the latter i would opine is the runner up on Q&A, with the former exposing Himself horribly and the best i can ascribe that performance was as that of the also ran…

        • srylands

          “i forlornly waited for the interviewer to ask both Jones and Robertson whether they would be likely to give all beneficiaries an extra benefit payment at Christmas as the Kirk Government had, alas the question was not asked and a ‘television magic moment’ was lost,”

          The sense of entitlement you promote is truly breathtaking.

          • Colonial Viper

            It’s good isn’t it. Citizens understanding the role the government has in supporting society and moderating the harsh edges of free market capitalism.

          • bad12

            Thank you i am pleased to note that you find my sense of the Welfare State remains intact despite 30 years of abysmal Neo-Liberal attacks upon it,

            PS, having you as a ‘stalker’ of my comments is a good look which simply provides all the readers a point of reference to the proof that the ‘right’ are as a rule a pack of brainless wankers…

            • srylands

              “Thank you i am pleased to note that you find my sense of the Welfare State remains intact despite 30 years of abysmal Neo-Liberal attacks upon it,”

              What attacks?

              The current government is a Left wing government that maintains a generous social welfare system. The current government has not reduced a single benefit since it has been in office. It has increased benefits by CPI. Last time I looked we spend $25 billion on welfare.

              Do you really think the current government adopts “neo liberal” policies ? 🙂 It is bizarre. New Zealanders like a lot of socialism, and thats what they get from all governments. I think you have some kind of brand illusion. Have you ever been to New Zealand?

              • Molly

                “Last time I looked we spend $25 billion on welfare.

                Last time I looked we spent $21.52 billion on The Ministry of Social Development. There – FIFY.

                If you are implying domestic purposes, but perhaps you are not, then that benefit is $1.74 billion. Unemployment Benefit $806 million, Invalids $1.33 billion.

                But of course, the biggest percentage by far is Superannuation $10.23 billion.

                The MSD budget also covers:
                Student loans, employment assistance, unemployment workshops, student assistance etc.

                And for those who appreciate the irony – $1.18 billion in accommodation assistance, helping keep those landlords charging high rents without any form of housing condition assessment.

                Do you really think the current government adopts “neo liberal” policies ?
                Do you know what neo liberal means? And also, have you tried getting any of these benefits lately? I despair at your continued lack of informed opinion.

          • phillip ure

            (an xtra pittance for beneficiaries @ xmas ‘is truly breathtaking’..?..eh..?

            did you sup at the sth canterbury finance golden-trough..?..there..?..srylands..?

            ..if not..why not..?

            ..were you not ‘in the loop’..?

            ..so you are damned if you did..and damned if you didn’t..eh..?

            ..’cos that payout to those in the loop..(which was a larger amount than all waitangi treaty settlements..to date..whoar!..eh..?..)

            ..that was really the ‘sense of entitlement’ to end all ‘senses of entitlement’..


            ..that was the ‘truly breathtaking sense of entitlement’..eh..?

            ..did you sup there..?


            ..phillip ure..

            • srylands

              You think the Government enjoyed bailing out those who deposited funds in failed financial institutions? Really? Like it was some kind of rort delivered as a political favour?

              • did you sup..?..srylands..?

                ..and if you were ‘in the loop’..you knew that every ‘financial-adviser’ in town was urging clients to pile in to sth cant finance..

                ..’cos was not only the investment govt-guaranteed..the profits also were..


                ..even tho at that time..any adviser worth anything had heard all the rumours/scuttlebutt about jhow shaky sth cant was..that didn’t matter..eh..?

                ..were you one of those leeching fucken parasites there..?..srylands..?

                ..came in later on in the piece..?..in that final taxpayer-money goldrush..?

                ..in on ‘the rort’..(as you call it..)..?..were you..?

                ..and were you (and the other leeches) driven by any sense of ‘breathtaking-entitlement’..?..there..?..srylands..?


                phillip ure..

              • KJT

                It was. Didn’t you notice all the National insiders and cronies who invested in SCF when it was known to be failing. Don’t tell me that they didn’t know.

                All those “smart” business roundtable types suddenly investing in SCF when the word was that it was failing.
                Sniggering all the way to the bank at the gullibility of New Zealanders.

                Knowing they would make a killing with the bailout.

                The whole thing was a setup and a rort.

                Just like asset sales.

  9. Mike S 9

    Watching Q+A this morning, Cunliffe is my pick for leader still.Probably because he is the most left of the three. I’ve changed my mind on deputy though. I’d like to see Shane Jones as deputy, he impressed me this morning and I think a Cunliffe/Jones team would gather in the votes and take it to Key. Robertson, in my opinion, won’t resonate with voters, I can’t put my finger on why exactly I think that, it maybe that he seems to be too far to the right for my liking. He is obviously very capable though and spoke well today. I think his best value would be working hard behind the scenes for the meantime anyway.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Shane Jones, Acting Prime Minister. Are you really sure about that?

    • Tracey 9.2

      Jones says very little but when he does it is very national-lite. I sense he is really struggling with the rules governing this contest. I can almost hear his teeth grinding. Last time we had a PM who masqueraded as the everyman… of that’s right we have one now.

    • chris 9.3

      IMO Jones needs to spend twelve months as tea-lady before he should be considered for a position with more responsibility.

    • Saarbo 9.4

      Yes, q&a. Cunliffe owned the debate and Jones is differentiating his message which is getting him noticed. I think we saw some of Robertson’s experience in this debate, he struggled.

      Can we get some younger people on q&a panel, Raymond Miller and Richard Prebble, both over a 100 years old aren’t they? Prebble’s take on the strength of the Candidates in their own electorates was weird, completely counter intuitive…you can see why this guy is in the ACT party….freak.

      • phillip ure 9.4.1

        yes..saarbo..and i think i have identified the source of all those young tory ministers who speak in that stilted/jerky/word-strangling-at-birth/glottal-manner..

        ..they are all practising the sincerest form of flattery..

        ..and imitating their godhead..


        phillip ure..

      • Linz 9.4.2

        Prebble! He’s crapping himself.

      • Hami Shearlie 9.4.3

        David Cunliffe was the winner by a country mile on Q & A – He sets forth his idea of what the problem is, but then he expands on that and actually shows the details of his solution, not just a general statement of what needs to be done. DC has the intellectual grunt for this job, he’s charming and classy, and on top of that, he looks like a Prime Minister and sounds like a Prime Minister. And you just KNOW that he wouldn’t embarrass us all on the world stage – Sorry Shane Jones, you stated today that you are not a diplomat – No kidding!!!! Women make up over half the population, and I don’t think they’ll warm to “Got-Credit-Card-Want-Porno” Jones. The French can keep their “colourful” Strauss-Kahn types!!

      • Murray Olsen 9.4.4

        It’s weird that Prebble should talk about strength in the electorate when he was basically hated in his. He had an ex-SAS guy running it for him, and making sure there were no serious challenges. He mistook Central Auckland for Daley’s Democratic Chicago.

    • Tamati 9.5

      I still don’t get this whole Cunliffe is the most left wing storyline. Yes, he’s made to some speeches where he bashed neoliberalism and stood up for dolphins, but what do his actions as a minister say?

      Yet to see any conclusive proof beyond his words that he’s anything more than a center left technocrat.

      • Ant 9.5.1

        Telecom regulation.

        The largest market intervention since we went balls deep in neoliberalism.

        • Tamati

          Legislation that was eventually supported by the Nats, can’t of been all that progressive!

          • Ant

            They didn’t support it, stop talking shit.

            They cried like babies about it but were essentially out manoeuvred and had to go along with it

            • Tamati

              Get your facts right before you accuse somone of talking shit. The Nats supported the Bill after select commitee. Go check the Hansard if you must.

              • Ant

                They voted for it but they sure as shit didn’t support it, just like the repeal of section 59 they grumbled, cried and dog whistled the whole way.

        • lurgee

          Struggling to see how opening up the telecom market to more competition makes him leftwing.

          • Colonial Viper

            Breaking up a monopoly provider mate. Just like they did with the oil companies, the steel companies and the rail companies, in the old days 😉

          • Ant

            Probably depends on what flavour of left you are: social democrat, socialist or something in between.

            Regulating a market failure fits the bill for many people, nationalising probably fits for others.

            • Tamati

              That’s why I don’t buy this whole Cunliffe is the next Michael Joseph Savage mantra. Whilst he can talk like a socialist, in the past has acted much more pragmatically. I think we would have to elect Cunliffe before we knew what he actually stood for.

              That being said, I still think he has an excellent mix of competence, experience and passion.

    • bad12 9.6

      Lolz, you see Roberston as further to the right than Jones, dare i suggest a visit to the eye specialist,

      Jones was standing right there in front of you via that television set promising tax cuts for business, the Irish economy knows all about tax cuts for business, the sugar rush works in the short term and leads to in the long term Government insolvency…

      • srylands 9.6.1

        “Lolz, you see Roberston as further to the right than Jones, dare i suggest a visit to the eye specialist,

        Jones was standing right there in front of you via that television set promising tax cuts for business, the Irish economy knows all about tax cuts for business, the sugar rush works in the short term and leads to in the long term Government insolvency…”

        Yep that cause and effect between lower corporate tax rates and Government insolvency is spot on.

        Thats why Singapore is on the verge of bankruptcy – it is that damn 17% corporate tax rate.

        Yep higher corporate tax rate – definitely the way to go for NZ.

        • bad12

          SSLands, good to see you agree, March 2015 should see a fair tax system brought about for New Zealand,

          If you like the Singapore tax system that much feel free to f**k off over there…

          • srylands

            “SSLands, good to see you agree, March 2015 should see a fair tax system brought about for New Zealand,”

            It is “srylands” not “SSLands”

            NZ has a fair tax system now. If by “fair:” you mean it is highly redistributive with the wealthy paying almost all of the tax. What do you want? We could have a flat tax which would be “fair”. Is that what you mean? I don’t think you know much about tax policy. Or New Zealand.

            • KJT

              In fact Srylands, middle income earners on PAYE pay the bulk of income tax. 60%.
              And a large proportion of the indirect taxes.

              As we have shown before, and as stated by IRD, many of the “wealthy” pay little or no tax. And many big firms in NZ pay no tax.

              As for Singapore, they can afford low tax rates for corporates, because of the high earnings of SOE’s, such as Temesek, the strict enforcement of tax rules, which means that businesses actually pay taxes, and the contribution to Government funds from ground rents. The effect is a higher real tax take from business and much more Government control than NZ.

            • amirite

              and yet the wealthy have never had it better, how come with that awful tax regime?

          • srylands

            “If you like the Singapore tax system that much feel free to f**k off over there…”

            More rude behaviour. Typical.

            • bad12

              Yes, i put a special effort into being rude to you at all times, coz your spethul…

            • framu

              “More rude behaviour. Typical.”

              yet you have absolutely no problem being rude to others – quik somebody call the
              whaaaa-mbulance for this little hypocrite

            • Tracey

              there is nothing ruder than concocting lies to manipulate people to your argument srylands and that is what you have been doing on this site for weeks.

              I look forward to your comment following your close reading of the Opus report on Transmission gully.

        • Alanz

          “Thats why Singapore is on the verge of bankruptcy”

          What stupid, idiotic, totally uninformed comment is that.

          If you stand by that, go repeat that in an internationally renowned publication. Or better still, you get Dodgy Jonkey or Double Dipton to repeat that in the media. Looking forward to a great response from the Singapore Government.

    • Chooky 9.7

      @ Mike S….f…no !…they are diametrically opposed…you cant get anyone more right than Jones…He would fit better into the Nact Party…Robertson would be better ….but better still would be a Labour woman eg Louise Wall…to woo the 50% woman vote ( Jones would be a disaster for this vote)

  10. Tracey 10

    Jones speaks of the Greens through gritted teeth… given the real likelihood for labour to govern again is in coaltion with Greens, he has to be ruled out as Labour leader

  11. shocking choice of tie and shirt from robertson..

    where he should have been crisp/sharp…he wasn’t..

    …his shirt shimmered..f.f.s..!

    ..(‘it’s the little things..’..eh..?..)

    ..and jones nearly turned feral..

    ..it was wobbly there for a mo’..

    phillip ure..

  12. Bill 12

    Would be nice to see comments shift away from personality based cheer-leading and concentrating on the substantive elements of each person’s presentation.

    And that said, I acknowledge that any specific policy announcement/claim can only be dishonest. So any candidate who is tempted and stupid enough to make precise policy announcements ought to be called on making them and called hard.

    The only legitimate pronouncements need, by necessity, to be nothing beyond broad based intent (eg it is one thing to say that the idea of a living wage will be promoted and pursued [as has been done] and quite another to say that workers employed in ‘area x’ will be awarded a living wage).

    So in the interests of understanding the framework that any policies will be hung on…I’m interested on whether any of the candidates are making an unequivocal commitment to publicly renounce neo-liberalism if in power and to apologise for Labour’s part in its implementation.

    I also want to hear commitments that any bashing of beneficiaries will be absolutely off the cards should a Labour government be in power.

    Any other broad and framework related questions out there?

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      – navigating the ongoing GFC/debt/derivative driven crisis
      – spying, privacy and protecting democratic rights and civil liberties
      – restoring benefits to some kind of humane level
      – massive corporate profits being taken out of NZ

      Also to add:

      issues of peak oil/peak energy, climate change.

      • RedBaron CV 12.1.1

        Democratic rights are law not money really so that doesn’t cost a government money. Some private people won’t make $$ – so what.

        Slowing down the overseas corporate take away menu- measures to make it unprofitable – as the money leaving dimishes that will take care of benefits and produce more jobs as money circulates locally.

        And items one and four share more, consume less, work together.

        and BTW why don’t we ask Key to give back the $0.5m or so that he has trousered from those tax cuts – that would be a good way to take the shine off him

        I would add one last thing to the list. Look at ways to insulate NZ from the the sort of bonfire that we have had – it was clear over the asset sales that most didn’t want it but it has happened anyway.
        I’m not saying reject change or we would still be subsidising buggies.

      • GregJ 12.1.2

        CV’s points above & also

        Review, replace or abolish:

        1. State Sector Act
        2. State Owned Enterprises Act
        3. Emploment Relations Act (aka “Emplyment Contracts Act lite”)

        Economic Development – “eggs in one basket” (sector & region) or sector diversified regional strength?

    • questions:..?

      1)..will you introduce a financial-transaction tax on the bankers..?..(this on bank-to-bank transactions..if not..why not..?..) rationale:..treasury figures provided to harawira prior to the last election showed such a tax would enable us to do away with g.s.t..should we choose..so..? + 8 european countries are about to introduce such a system..so we don’t need to reinvent the wheel..

      2)..will you end cannabis-prohibition..?..(and at the same time end the advertising/promoting/normalising of the product that (according to recent u.n.-figures) kills more people on the planet than war/violence..?..alcohol..?

      ..and is a cause/driver of so many of our social-problems..

      3)..will you restore a liveable income to the poorest/sickest..?..(ie…a living wage for all..)

      4)..will you pledge to end child-poverty..?..to undo what has been wrought on the weakest/most in need since that ‘strewth’ richardson laid waste to those basic support systems..and what the last labour govt failed to repair..

      5)..will you fold dental-care into the health-system..and either provide the same levels of support for free dental-care for all..or targeted healthcare for those unable to afford private dentists..?(attached to hospitals..?..)

      5)..will you commit to adjusting taxation policies to finance the cleaning up of the environment we have so sullied..?..

      6)..will you promise to repeal the surveillance-state laws..and withdraw from the five-eyes spying network..?

      phillip ure..

  13. Not a PS Staffer 13

    Richard Prebble on Q&A.

    He did a full Textor job on Cunliffe: attacked him on his strength; his high New Lynn electoral majority.

    This is a clear sign the the right sees Cunliffe as the real threat.

    • chris73 13.1

      So why don’t Labour stop spending money on the PR whizzes and media trainers they have now and go out and hire some better ones?

  14. Not a PS Staffer 14

    Robertson’s winning strategy

    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.
    I grew up in Dunedin.

  15. Linz 15

    Prebble worried all right, very, very worried. He’s experiencing deja vu: 1971-72. Only he’s on the wrong side this time.

  16. Paul 16

    John Key’s propaganda machine the Herald attempts to undermine progressive policies by the left.

    # 236. It runs a dodgy poll with leading questions
    What do you think of Grant Robertson’s ‘living wage’ promise?

    Too costly. Taxpayers shouldn’t fund a public service pay rise.
    Unfair. Public sector gets a pay rise, private sector gets nothing
    It’s good, but he should have waited until it was costed.
    Great idea, wages are far too low.

    Here’s my own poll for the Herald…

    What do you think of the Herald’s online polls?
    Terrible. They’re intended to influence what you think
    Awful. They provide leading replies to limit your response.
    Ghastly. They are used by the right wing to test their policies.
    Amazing. The Herald is the best newspaper in the world and is full of independent, fearless in-depth journalism.

  17. North 17

    This is Q + A……..

    One Prebble =

    One Mad Puppy (Left) +

    One Scab +

    One Mad Dog (Right) =

    One Mad Bitch =

    One Credible Commentator ???

    For God’s Sake !

    One Prebble +

    Q + A = All Punch & Judy Crap !

  18. bad12 18

    Did my ears deceive me??? Q&A this morning, all three contenders for the leadership were asked the question of whether or not they could work with whoever the Party chose as the next leader,

    Did i hear Shane Jones say something along the lines that He had entered the leadership race as an all or nothing proposition,

    Please let it be true, Shane Jones not winning the leadership contest and quitting the Parliament at the next election would be a great bonus emanating from the democratic leadership contest now taking place…

    • Neoleftie 18.1

      Actually the right of the party has put up jones as a last ditch effort…look for goff, king mallard and jones to depart.

      • bad12 18.1.1

        What Annette to depart and hand Rongotai to Russell Norman, what a good idea…

      • Rhinocrates 18.1.2

        Unfortunately, I think that the worst thing about National MPs (well, one of the worst things) is that they see parliament as something to put on their CVs when the try to get corporate directorships, and so treat time in government as a way of serving their future benefactors and colleagues by looting the country on their behalf, while the worst Labour MPs such as Goff, King, Mallard, Fenton et al are just bright enough to know that they are now unemployable outside parliament and so will hang on tooth and nail, and as they hang on, can’t stand not being the centre of attention and won’t resist the temptation to meddle. Those resignations may not happen – they’re just the threats a toddler makes to hold their breath or toss their toys out of the cot.

        Look at The Hairdo (and Pete George) for example – nothing to say, nothing to do, but desperate for attention and willing to sell any principle while wrapping it in waffle so long as they can make believe that someone other than their hairstylist takes them seriously (and I’m sure Dunne’s hairstylist gets some giggles behind his back).

        Don’t just hope that they’ll go, force them out.

  19. mickysavage 19

    I am at the meeting. The crowd is good, about 300 or so. It could have been bigger but Sunday is an important day for Pacifica and it is Father’s Day.

    All the candidates spoke well although one candidate I think was head and shoulders above the rest …

    • Anne 19.1

      Dare I ask which one that was? 😛

      • mickysavage 19.1.1

        I could be accused of being biased 🙂

        • Clement Pinto

          Ok, just describe the candidate or just state his main points. We will guess!

          • Lanthanide

            Some suggest that he looks like a cat.

            • Clement Pinto

              A pussy lover?

              • Tigger

                I was there too. Really impressed with all three candidates. Good turnout and lots of applause for all three. Afterwards there wads feeling of hope and positivity in those I chatted with.

                Well organised. Also Moira and Tim spoke well in intros.

                Good stuff, Labour.

                • Neoleftie

                  I was at the last leadership road show. Full of hope and joy after the meeting and we got a set up cock up and waste of 16 months.

                  • Tigger

                    Actually I didn’t feel at all hopeful after the meetings last year. Different rules now probably have something to do with that.

                    • Neoleftie

                      Yes good point there tigger.

                    • karol

                      Yes, i recall. The hopefulness, as expressed by commenters here, lasted for less than a day – and then it all turned to custard, with the whole Team Shearer turn against the membership.

                • Ant

                  Yep even on Q&A all three came across well.

            • North

              So Mickey’s clever coding did not divert you then ? That you commit to your keyboard as you do makes you look like a prat – forget the cat – Lanth’ @ above.

  20. Neoleftie 20

    I will be at the meeting in Dunedin next Sunday.
    I will have one question for the candidates and my old friend grant.

    Which one will bring a meaningful and timely policy platform that reflect the true Labour Party, a more balanced social economy where people come first and not just powerful owners…a new direction, a new pathway away from neoliberalism toward a just fair and sustainable society…a return to a socialist type of sustainable growth via fiscal and monetary intervention in a out of control chaotic market place.

  21. Ad 21

    It’s an omen: Otago just lost the Shield to Hawkes Bay 19-20. Grant Robertson is from Otago. Labour will lose the election under Robertson. It all just makes sense.

    • Neoleftie 21.1

      Better to win for a wee period than not at all…heaps of positives came out of the win for ooootago

  22. gobsmacked 22

    Patrick Gower on 3 news tonight:

    “I was completely wrong last week about the EPMU endorsement of Grant Robertson. When I told viewers this was a fact, I was making stuff up as usual, and I apologise. I promise not to do it again, because I am a journalist who is committed to reporting the truth, not just self-promotion and invention.”

    OK, he didn’t actually say any of that. But an honest person would.

    • North 22.1

      Ah, Paddy the Handsome as some wit said………what gets me about that dork is the way he roarlessly bares the teeth after the last word of his every “I know every fucking thing” sign-off.

      He’s like a semi-unlikeable monkey even though…… you know…… you’re at the zoo with the mokos and you don’t wanna put them wrong about the animal kingdom.

  23. lprent 23

    Drat. This cold is too bad. Skipping tonights meeting. My throat feels like a golf ball -raspy, complete with racking cough, and i swear that I am dizzy.

    • karol 23.1

      Damn. Sorry to read that. I thought you’d shaken it – or has it come back?

      And I was looking forward to your take on the meeting.

      Hope you stay comfortable and get well soon.

      • lprent 23.1.1

        Another relapse. Personally I blame it on Lyn working at that institution of bright (but gormless) young minds and swirling viruses known as a university….

  24. dumrse 24

    “…I have identified … those… who speak in that stilted/jerky/word-strangling-at-birth/glottal-manner..”

    What a bizarre comment from some one who writes like……….

    …his shirt shimmered..f.f.s..!

    ..(‘it’s the little things..’..eh..?..)

    ..and jones nearly turned feral..

    ..it was wobbly there for a mo’..

    I could cut and paste for months but I’m sure you get my drift.

    • North 24.1

      Akshully you’re a Dorkus DumbArse. I recognise immediately that you’re taking issue with Phillip
      Ure’s excellently economical and straight to the point prose. Unlike you he has a point and he makes it, excellently, as aforesaid !

      What do you have to offer arsehole……..apart from a withering once upon a time hard-on over ShonKey Python ?

      • Neoleftie 24.1.1

        Thanks north, better than I could say to dumb arse above.
        Phil here if you concentrate has good points to make, also a website and got a phd the hard way, travelled widely too I understand but dum arse can only see someone different.
        We see a different and embrace it..

      • Saarbo 24.1.2

        I enjoy Phillip Ure’s writing, it reminds me a bit of Lloyd Jones writing in The Book of Fame. Sort of poetic, lots of info but economical as you point out. Get with it dumrse.

  25. karol 25

    So far, Robertson has used the same bag of tricks that were used by Shearer – Shearer MKII?

    In the NZ Herald qu & a, Robertson said the first thing he’d do as leader is tour the country and talk and listen to Kiwis (why hasn’t he done that aleady? How long has ne been on the Labour front bench/

    Then we get the feint left (which won’t be sustained because past evidecne shows Robertson to be a centrist and cautious).

    Then we get some eye & headline catching police announcements, in isolation of any underlying programme and platform.

    It’s not just what they say on the sti=ump. It’s how that relates to their longer term political philosophy; and the way they handle the media and questions.

    Cunliffe should stop the “me too”, letting Robertson set the agenda. He was best on TV 3 News when he stated how he had costed the living wage policy, and expressing caution over gender equality in the caucus by 2017. He she play to his strengths – a broader perspective and underlying arguments for change. His ability to articulate policy, to deliver engaging oratory, and to think on his feet.

    PS: What will it take to stop Glower editorialising the news? – he is not an op ed columnist.

    • Neoleftie 25.1

      Um Karol, on Q & A corin was going on about economic direction and the sacred cows…
      Interestingly first way and third way came up….
      Grant stated we need a ‘new way’.
      That should be the platform for labour.

      • karol 25.1.1

        Except, Grant’s “new way” is same old 3rd way.

        • Neoleftie

          Examples please.
          To walk the tight rope of labour internal politics one need balance, a bland neutral cautious nature hiding oneself from the heavy weights on the right of the party until your day comes and you have a team of like minded peeps around you in support, where your plans within plans can come about in a timely manner…who holds the treasury benches in the coming labour- green govt will determine the new way.
          A new way different from third first and second…

          • Colonial Viper

            You’re saying that there is another Grant Robertson which has been hidden from view all this time, hidden under a carefully produced bland, neutral, cautious public exterior?

            If true, that makes me a little more nervous, to be honest, not a little less nervous.

            • Neoleftie

              What happens to a politician who acts, thinks and is slightly different from the pack…ask DC again. Lucky to survive the last round of knife stickers.

          • karol

            Examples please? Grant Robertson on Labour’s housing policy – quick to pull back from any suggestion it might be part of a radical new direction for Labour.

            • Neoleftie

              That proves he is a politician and cautious, playing a long end game.
              Do you want the MSM a resonant long lasting sound bite such red under the beds, better to hide away and keep the powder dry until you can use it at the right time surrounded with full support, from a position of strength to bring about maximum lasting change.

              • karol

                Meanwhile, along the way, GR has compromised so much with the MSM and conservative forces, he’s further from any direction towards lasting change than when he started.

                The left needs a leader, not a timid appeaser with the forces of conservatism.

                Labour’s housing policy was already far from the state house building policy of Labour 1938, and then he backed down on that also.

                I’ve seen that kind of game being played for 3 decades – and all that happens is society keeps getting pulled further towards the right, and the rule of the corporate elites.

                It’s not a “new way”. It’s the same old 3rd way.

                • Neoleftie

                  And Karol just just what if there was another way…

                  • karol

                    I’m sure there is another way. Grant Robertson isn’t about to lead us there.

                    Cunliffe may take us a little way in that direction, but it will take pressure from below by the many for a real new direction to be taken.

                    • Colonial Viper


                      real change in society has always occurred due to pressure from mass movements which did not necessarily hold formal power themselves

              • Rhinocrates

                playing a long end game

                Unfortunately his “end game” is the aggrandisement of one Grant Robertson.

                I’m a Wellington Central resident and Beltway Grant has never stuck his neck out to do anything that would be to the benefit of his electorate.

                An issue came up a couple of yours back that directly affected me and Beltway Grant made a big show of wringing his hands and… posted a link on Beige Alert, saying he’d “like” an enquiry. Of course afterwards he did nothing. I asked him about this and he ignored me as if I and my concerns were beneath such an elevated courtier such as himself.

                He’s all talk, he’s insincere, he’s lazy. If it doesn’t benefit him personally, he’s not interested – so he’ll make a public gesture and then forget about it.

                There’s no subtlety to him, he’s not playing a “long game” or anything like that – he just doesn’t give a shit about anyone but himself.

                • Ant

                  I wonder when the long game was going to kick in? 2017? 2020? Because it looked like over the last 2 years Shearer/Robertson had been up to f**k.

                  A large segment of the population have suffered under 5 years of National while they have been cruising on parliamentary salaries.

                  • Neoleftie

                    Long game is when the peeps are suffering enough they vote en mass labour and we have 6 years or so of progress. a very seasoned cabinet minister will get their ministry under control in a term or so…so meaningful change takes forever.
                    One cabinet minister I knew had Litmus paper as a policy paper test….in water it went red so it was his stamp of approval, if not bin for it in front of the officials.
                    Good old stan.

                • Alanz

                  “He’s all talk, he’s insincere, he’s lazy. If it doesn’t benefit him personally, he’s not interested – so he’ll make a public gesture and then forget about it.”

                  + 1000

                  Many who have worked with him can testify and provide details about a great many instances of his “all talk”, insincerity, laziness, narrow self-interest and public gestures.

          • North

            Well yes in theory. There is however no way that Grant was not donkey deep in the visceral madness that preceded Shearer and continues right until now in relation to Cunliffe. He and his buddies ain’t that great that they’re entitled to go on owning the parliamentary wing. Norman Kirk…….yeah……Grant Robertson no !

            If anything, I’m into the one who’s sucked up all the shit but still…….he’s there. Politics has come to that man……he hasn’t come to politics.

    • Murray Olsen 25.2

      Why is Robertson standing for leader if he needs to wander around the country to put together his job description? Doesn’t he have a clue yet?

  26. Boadicea 26

    Cunliffe is the lowest ranking Labour Caucus MP because of the sneeky manipulative efforts of Grant Robertson, Annette King and Trevor.

    Shame on them.
    Reject them.

    • Neoleftie 26.1

      Opinion or fact?

      • North 26.1.1

        Neoleftie……..it’s clearly, cannot be other than, and is offered as, opinion. There are no links for that. So how about venturing your own opinion rather than running the dumb line of “Opinion or fact ? Expecting that to suffice.

        • Neoleftie

          Opinion based on nothing is just opinion but stated opinion based on some grain of truth has meaning. I was asking for truth based on hearsay..
          IMHO only grant is trying to manager and walk a fine line between the power cliques of the Labour Party, the old hand moderates whilst trying to bring about some kind of unity with two of then caucus factions and of course setting himself up to be Leader H3

  27. North 27

    Jesus am I relieved………Cunliffe was never “one” with Laws.


    It was pleasingly honest of Laws to mention “megalomaniac” was it it not ?

  28. Boadicea 28

    Shane Jones is a gross embarrassment.
    He is s clown.
    At western springs he is a joke.
    He thinks the members are laughing with him.
    No they are laughing at you Shane. You are a bofoon.

    • Neoleftie 28.1

      A very clever baboon though, in step with a cross section of peeps but from an older period of labour…

      • Rhinocrates 28.1.1

        The next election is in 2014, a very different year from 197-whatever.

        Not even hipsters wear walkshorts and sandals over socks. Getting back in touch with your roots doesn’t mean regression, otherwise he’d be wearing animal skins and dragging women around by the hair… oh, hang on, he might want to…

      • North 28.1.2

        Yeah Old Jonesee’s cunning alright. Just like Winnie…….yeah…….nah…….not quite as good though. Love the spectacle of the fulla but……..yeah……nah…….not in the modern world. I mean in the last Labour administration Public Service Garage flicked him a ’63 Wolseley all black and shiny for the ministerial car. So busy wahanui-ing he didn’t even notice.

        Shane ain’t a guy of the modern age my bro’.

  29. tracey 29


    the danger of getting these guys deeply committed to particular initiatives is they have to sit in with party policy.

    im not sure jones stating the need for more mining more govt money in business and tax relief for businesses sits easily in lp policy and in the event of coalition with greens.

    of the 3 jones is presenting to me as the one hardest to get along with if disagreeing.

    • Bill 29.1

      I don’t want any deep commitment to any discrete policy.

      What I want is a clear indication of the framework they will use or feel personally comfortable with and that they will use to inform any future policies.

      As I said in my comment above, any detailed policy announcement would be dishonest – firstly because, at least in some cases, policy will be determined by financial considerations that are not presently known, and secondly – because any policy will have to adhere to the policy document laid down by the party membership.

      And what I don’t want is a personality contest or any ‘I’ll see your promise and raise you’ or ‘This is my fantastic idea that I came up with all on my fantastic own’ type claims (when that is patently not the case) or any ad hominem b/s.

  30. Swan 30

    “Labour will leave more for future generations than just debt”

    I knew things were dire, but are they writing a will?

    Seriously though, I take from this we can be assured Labour will be leaving debt.

    • Colonial Viper 30.1

      You’re talking about Bill English, what is he up to now, $25B of new debt since he started up in 2008?

      • Tracey 30.1.1

        and his is what Labour and Greens need to make sure is in every sound bite they get, whether asked about it or not, get it in there THAT NATIONAL has turned us into a a deeply indebted household, problem is they sold the house and still owe the mortgage. That’s crazy economics.

  31. renegade 31

    Grant Robertson deserves to win. He is our best choice.

    • karol 31.1

      Why? On what evidence?

      ” deserves “? Strange choice of word.

      Best choice for what?

      He is best as a back room strategist. He ain’t a leader for the country. He’s not there for the struggling poor, whether in paid work or on benefits.

      • Neoleftie 31.1.1

        Rumour has it his first part time job was supermarket check out, grant poor from an ok kind of way, never really suffered apart from the slings and arrows of red neck anti gay stuff and even then been sheltered by intellectsasi hangout

        • oftenpuzzled

          You people stagger me. You make assumptions on no facts at all. You actually have no evidence about the family’s circumstances and struggles. He is very familiar with the struggles of the poor and those on benefits. As a consequence his experience contributes to a strong desire not to have people struggle at the bottom of the heap and he has said so time and again. He is totally genuine. The three potential leaders all reflect a desire to see things improve for the greater good and they have all spoken strongly about it. FGS Karol et al lay off the totally negative personal comments.

          • karol

            Not personal comments – comments about how GR will perform as leader. I have said nothing about his personal life.

            PS: I’m only responding to your overly positive spin for GR & my comments are based on his public performance – that’s how the public will judge him as a leader.

            • Luka

              Don’t take it personally, its just that GR ain’t fit to win an election. He is 5 years away, he should be a minister before he is leader. He needs to earn it, and has not paid his dues yet!

          • Neoleftie

            Oh that grant had shoes with holes in them at high school due to financial strain.

          • Rhinocrates

            I am not the least interested in Beltway Grant’s personal mythology. All I know about him is that he’s been a useless, lazy, self-aggrandising apparatchik.

            Key has his own personal mythology too – solo mum, poor, state house, blah blah… and we know how that turned out, don’t we? Oh, and then there’s Bennett too and her tale of woe.

            I don’t care if David Cunliffe eats deep-fried kittenburgers, so long as he does his job.

            I know already that Beltway Grant won’t.

  32. AmaKiwi 32

    I won’t be at any of these candidate’s meetings, but here is my question for Shane Jones:

    You are Labour spokesperson for transport.

    Cunliffe was handed two fairly meaningless assignments: revenue and fisheries.

    John Key’s budget proposed $12 billion for roads. Green MP Julie Genter ripped Key’s plan to shreds.

    Cunliffe had Revenue Minister Dunne on the ropes over his parking tax and other nonsense, until Dunne resigned. On fisheries he stirred up a huge fuss about snapper quota.

    What have you done as spokesperson for transport, because I haven’t heard anything.

    I would appreciate it if someone would ask this question.

    • Neoleftie 32.1

      Great question there…I would but want to ask about bold direction and key policy not statements.

    • Tracey 32.2

      Labour could do worse than coat-tail generation zero’s campaign

      • Ant 32.2.1

        Labour has to be bold but also has take the public with them. Seemed too often that smart policy got lost or dropped because it was essentially shoved into the pubic sphere as a complete solution to a problem most people didn’t even know about.

  33. i gave western springs to cunnliffe..(going on speech..and audience-reaction..)

    ..with robertson doing better than perhaps i expected..

    ..(both gave good speeches..but i still pick cunnliffe as being the best to see down/off key..

    ..and i am pleased robertson won’t be banned to the wilderness/backbench upon defeat..

    ..he will make a good minister..)

    ..jones was like the drunk uncle who makes an unscheduled-speech @ the wedding-reception..

    ..and was all over the place..like that drunk uncle..

    ..(he also seems to be getting bored with the whole process..

    ..and i can see him going feral @ about meeting number seven..)

    phillip ure..

  34. Walter 34

    why should we pay for this stupid election of a labour leader

    • Neoleftie 34.1

      Stupid election is a very principled democratic affair but I too have concerns regarding tax payer money being spent

    • Tracey 34.2

      we pay for the election of every other party leader by paying for them to get to their meetings and/or conferences to decide.

  35. Anne 35

    Yes, I gave it to Cunliffe too. A really solid performance. But I agree Robertson is a talented player. I know some here don’t like him but he’s coming across well on the campaign trail at least.

    • karol 35.1

      GR often has made some good speeches – for me he’s solid front bench material – not a leader, and generally, too centrist for me.

      • Neoleftie 35.1.1

        From my reading over the last few years you Karol are far to the left of cunliffe any even curran so must be hard to align yourself with any labour pollies.

        • karol

          Yes, I have stated that Cunliffe is more moderate than me.

          I do seem him as the best the Labour caucus has got right now to lead them.

          And GR has, over the last couple of years, been more to the centre than Cunliffe, as well as not having the grit and smarts to take on Key, or begin to steer Labour away from soft “neoliberalism”.

          PS: I don’t see myself as “far” left. Back int he 60s and 70s, my current views would have seemed fairly mainstream left. The centre ground of politics has shifted since then.

          • Neoleftie

            For me it’s the old class struggle between workers and elites…deepest of red green am I.

          • Rhinocrates

            The centre ground of politics has shifted since then.

            Indeed. Thatcher called Blair her greatest triumph, which should surely be a cause for concern, but the ABC club acolytes such as Robertson see it as a blessing.

            Is that Stockholm Syndrome or just Labour’s own weird brand of decadence?

            • Neoleftie

              Centre ground of politics mimics the societal change and its definition that influence voting identifiers and voting patterns such as individualism and rise of consumerism.
              People by nature have shift rightwards on the political spectrum over the last few decades and the defining centre correspondingly shift to compensate for the curves atonal patterned drift. The imbedded of neo lib has influenced the very underlying societal stablisers which make it hard too be a true open leftie in politics until the masses suffer enough that they awake to their own plight and within the left there is both unity and resonance with the implied suffering then and only then can the left seize the day.
              It take timing, a solid leader and unity on the left to pull it off and provide a correction or rebalancing in the slow drift rightwards.

      • Alanz 35.1.2

        It is not a matter of liking or not liking Grant. It is a matter of whether he can deliver and actually do some really thinking and doing work. He can talk; that he can do. And that is about it.

      • A.Ziffel 35.1.3

        Karol, you have in the past also described Russell Norman as too centrist. That’s a tough standard.

        • karol

          Show me where Russel Norman is radical? Lately he’s been chasing the current centre-left of politics.

    • Boadicea 35.2

      Yes GR can speak well…and be pleasing…and sensible…and yawn…I lost attention.

      I can’t look at him without thinking that this is Annette’s Kings’s protege and he fucked up Shearer’s office and strategy SO BADLY that he should be cast out of the Party.

      GR must have a neck like a jockey’s bollox to ask for the Leadership after the mess on the past 20 months.

      • hush minx 35.2.1

        I’ve noticed he’s trying to recast himself as the new generation of leaders. But you’re quite right – he’s actually a well embedded part of the establisment. Latest Roy Morgan has Labour down again, and he’s got to take some responsibility for that.

        Also not sure how he can call himself a loyal deputy when we know he was actively undertaking a leadership spill via his numbers woman (Street). So when did he decide Shearer had to go?

  36. Ad 36

    Shane Jones in action tonight was a late ’70s raconteur from the Kaitaia RSA: great for laughs, but spare me to find anything of any substance in the guy.
    Jones vs Key: Jones gets a one-punch joke in and then turns into mince.

    Robertson in action tonight was best when he channelled Norman Kirk: it’s about somewhere to work, someone to love, somewhere to live, and something to hope for. Excellent bon mots there. Now all he need is an original line.
    Robertson versus Key: Robertson realises that no-one under 70 gives a flying fuck about old Prime Minsters and goes down after one quote. Great longbow action, no stiletto knife.

    Cunliffe in action tonight was boring on the Reserve Bank and best when he stated black and white what he was going to do for the wages of real people. If he call us “ordinary Kiwis” again I will leap up and strangle him. Please god throw away your notes; you’re not on the Harvard debating team anymore.
    Cunliffe versus Key: easily his equal, so long as he doesn’t keep spouting complex policy, makes the benefits of Labour real and fast, and gets Jones to write his comedy.

    To me the core selection matrix is this: who will beat John Key. Because Key will remain Prime Minister until Labour has someone better who can defeat him.

  37. Intrinsicvalue 37

    As a centre right voter, I am absolutely delighted at your leadership contest. It shows what a joke the Lab’s have become as they pander to every weird segment of this once proud party, and offer little more than the politics of envy. JK will make mincemeat out of any one of them.

    • Mary 37.1

      As a centre right voter I’d have thought you’d be a Labour voter, if not a Labour Party member.

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