Lessons

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, September 22nd, 2014 - 482 comments
Categories: election 2014, labour - Tags: ,

Greetings from the sanity of Dunedin North. Every pundit and their dog is opining on the lessons of Saturday, so I might as well have a go too:

(1) The left made its share of mistakes in this election, largely (as usual) fighting amongst ourselves. We need to work together, or we will lose the next election too.

(2) The right’s dirty politics works, and the public don’t (yet) believe it / care, so expect a lot more of it. NZ politics has taken a sad turn for the worse.

(3) The commercial realities of modern media and its ownership create a permanent head wind for left wing / progressive politics. For (most of) the media (most of the time)politics is portrayed as a gladiatorial contest. These problems have no easy solution. Blogs / social media are not the answer (at least, not yet). Only a minority engage, and we just silo ourselves into our tribes.

(4) Like “balanced” media coverage of the climate change “debate”, a quote from each side makes everything confusing enough for people to draw the conclusion that they want, even if the facts are 97% on one side.

(5) In the madness of the last month, the public believed everything Key told them (see 3, 4). Key will enjoy a post-election honeymoon during which he is untouchable. But medium to long term he is damaged goods, and every political person knows it. Medium to long term he will not get quite the media free ride that he has (largely) had for the last 6 years.

(6) Non voters don’t vote. Too many of the young don’t vote. The massive effort to enroll voters and the potential appeal of the novelty of I/M had, in the end, a negligible impact. (It’s probably now a lost cause to chase non-voters, and that sad fact should give us all pause to reflect on the state of our democracy.) Elections are won by those who show up (middle class, not young), so it is no wonder that most policy caters to that group.

(7) Activists are different. We don’t see the world like regular people, and our intuitions about how regular people see the world are usually wrong. Many on the left were sure that all Labour had to to was install Cunliffe and the votes would come rolling in. The opposite happened (not a criticism of anyone, just a fact). Although activists may not see it this way, Shearer appears to have resonated much more effectively with voters.

(8) Following on from (7 and 6), activists need to let Labour be a center party without tearing it down / trying to drag it further left, and let The Greens and I/M (or whatever emerges) be further left parties without tearing them down. Each party will capture its own natural share of the vote, then the parties can work together in government.

(9) The poor, the vulnerable and the young in NZ are in for another hard three years. This election has been a tragedy for them (and for the environment).

(10) Going forward, the Left needs to (a) wise up about MMP, (b) work together, (c) fundraise, (d) organise and (e) win.

TLDR? United we stand, divided we fall.

482 comments on “Lessons”

  1. Gosman 1

    I agree with point 7. I have always found it interesting that the response of many on here when people point out views that are regarded as mainstream they are generally attacked as if they are extremist dangerous ideas of madmen. I’m not even meaning stuff I have stated as I can understand why you would think that. The Activist base on the left near reality checks like this election result I believe.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      “they are generally attacked as if they are extremist dangerous ideas of madmen”

      I think they’re generally attacked as being poorly thought-out and not fitting with reality and/or the facts.

      • Tracey 1.1.1

        That is the thing isnt it Lanth. I agree with democracy and how it works. But the majority arent always being factually well founded. For example the s59a amendment had a referendum of 85% against but many of the arguments were factually misrepresented.

        By all means disagree with my politics but if you give me a reason and i KNOW as opposed to think, it is factually wrong, it disturbs me.

        • Gosman 1.1.1.1

          This attitude is actually a massive problem for the left. I hesitate to tell you this because if you ever fix it you become massively more electable but then again the liklihood is the vast majority of you will simple dissmiss my opinions of having no merit so I don’t think I have to worry much.

          An awful lot of left wing people think in simplistic black and white terms and are supremely confident that the policies they support are not just better but that the evidence suggests that it is the only decent policy option with no (or hardly any) downside. While the opposing policy proposed from the right will only bring death and destruction on us all (slight exageration there but only ever so slightly).

          This attitude of ‘I know best’ and ‘You’re stupid if you don’t see my policies are the best’ is a massive turnoff for many New Zealanders. You may even be right that the policy will work out as you expect but taking the attitude that you would be unintelligent not supporting the left’s policies (and by extension highlighting how smart you think you are) just makes many New Zealanders think you are preechy know alls.

          • Tracey 1.1.1.1.1

            And so when you write at keepingstock that your goal is to correct wrongheaded thinking it is a worthwhile goal. When i write that someone basing a view on something factually incorrect disturbs me you respond as above? but i am symptomatic of black and white thinking…

            Just when i thought you and i might engage in a constructive discussion…

            • Gosman 1.1.1.1.1.1

              The difference is I have never stated there isn’t a downside to policies I support. I freely acknowledge there will be winners and losers for any new proposal and that this needs to be taken in to account at some level. This is at odds with many here who think something like a CGT is such a no-brainer you would have to be either corrupt or incredibly foolish to reject it. That attitude is why the left struggles to gain purchase with many that are probably ripe to support parties promoting left wing ideas.

              • Lanthanide

                “This is at odds with many here who think something like a CGT is such a no-brainer you would have to be either corrupt or incredibly foolish to reject it.”

                And this is where we get back to “reality” and “facts”.

                The treasury and reserve bank themselves both recommend a CGT. The tax working group recommended a CGT. The OECD recommends a CGT.

                So yes, you would be either corrupt, incredibly foolish or purely greedy (you missed that one) to reject it.

                • Gosman

                  And yet Peter Dunne states he has received official advice from Inland Revenue which suggests it isn’t worth it. Guess not everyone thinks it is a no-brainer as you imply.

                  • Lanthanide

                    IRD are only looking at it from a revenue perspective, not from a wider rebalancing of the economy, which is what all of the other entities are taking into account.

                    • Gosman

                      Do nations that have a CGT have a better balanced economy than us then?

                      Also CGT applies to ALL investments doesn’t it? Wouldn’t this discourage investment generally and not just the ‘Bad’ investment you seem to have a problem with?

                    • Lanthanide

                      “Do nations that have a CGT have a better balanced economy than us then?”

                      I don’t know, perhaps you should ask the tax working group, the OECD, reserve bank and treasury why they think a CGT tax would help to rebalance our economy, and whether other countries that do have such taxes have more balanced economies. Of course, other countries also have significantly different tax regimes overall, as well regulations, cultures and strengths and weaknesses built up over centuries of development. So it seems like a pretty facile argument to point at other countries and make a binary decision as to whether a policy is good or not based on a very narrow and shallow analysis of the data, as you are asking me to do in that question.

                      “Also CGT applies to ALL investments doesn’t it? Wouldn’t this discourage investment generally and not just the ‘Bad’ investment you seem to have a problem with?”
                      Do you think it’s fair that in the week that Gareth Morgan sold off his share of TradeMe, that he got $55M totally tax free? Do you think Gareth Morgan could spare 15% of that windfall?

                      The point is at the moment, the average NZer invests in housing, not in the productive economy. It is believed that a large reason for this is the capital gains that can be made through this avenue, largely without any real ‘effort’. CGT’s aim is to discourage that activity in favour of more productive investment.

                      In general, it’s better to have an economy that has a basis of manufacturing and creating things (like Germany), rather than one that hoards stuff and sits on it, collecting rent money (US, UK, whose economies rely heavily on “financial services”).

                    • Also CGT applies to ALL investments doesn’t it? Wouldn’t this discourage investment generally and not just the ‘Bad’ investment you seem to have a problem with?

                      The term ‘balance’ in this context means the fairly obvious principle of not having one type of income taxed and another not taxed. If we’re going to have income tax, it makes no sense to leave income from capital gains untaxed. The fact that voters who stand to receive capital gains reject CGT en masse is a matter of pure self-interest, not logic. Which means, it may be going too far to say people would have to be “either corrupt or incredibly foolish to reject it,” but it’s certainly not going too far to say that people would have to be either self-centred or irrational to reject it. Which is pretty much what you read on left blogs and interpret it as an “I know best” attitude.

                  • Tracey

                    4500 kiwis think dunne has good ideas

                    • Gosman

                      Yes and over a million New Zealanders agreed with John Key and National that they didn’t want a CGT. And guess what? National now has enough seats as a result that the idea won’t see the light of day again for another three years if Labour is silly enough to bring it up next election.

                    • Hi Gosman,

                      Is voting a means of determining the truth about the world?

                      It seems to me that your position is not one of defending the nous of the ordinary New Zealander.

                      Rather, it is the claim that if, in a democracy, you want to have your hands on the levers of power it pays to claim that New Zealanders are correct in their judgment of ‘the facts’ of the world even if you genuinely believe they are incorrect in that judgment.

                      The triumph of pragmatism over honesty.

                    • And, of course, that attitude is far more dismissive and disrespectful of New Zealanders and their ability to think about issues than is the view that only by asserting your genuinely held opinions to others do you show real respect for them.

                    • Gosman

                      I was responding to Tracey’s dismissal of Dunne’s views based on how many people voted for him. I think such attitudes are ridiculous.

                • Grantoc

                  Your comment above Lanthanide highlights one of the Left’s core problems.

                  In your last sentence you label those who are not interested in a CGT as “corrupt, incredibly foolish or purely greedy”. That’s at least 50% of the voters.

                  Your attitude (and others on the Left who hold similar views) will simply push these voters away, into NZ First or National or elsewhere. They demonstrated on Saturday that will not be lectured to or berated by those on the Left.

                  If you take this one policy example, you and the Left would be much better off listening to these voters about why they either don’t care about, or don’t agree with CGT. You may learn something. You may even find that they are more attracted to your views because you’re listening to them. They may even end up agreeing with you, and, god forbid, voting for Labour.

                  If you want to stay in opposition forever continue to abuse, denigrate and blame voters who disagree with you. A little humility and self assessment can go along way. Try it.

                  • Lanthanide

                    “That’s at least 50% of the voters.”

                    First, please show me where at least 50% of the voters specifically said they didn’t want a CGT.

                    Secondly, note that this doesn’t mean those voters aren’t corrupt, incredibly foolish or purely greedy, just that there’s a lot of them.

                    An idea can be very popular, while also being very stupid. Often the most popular ideas are the most self-serving ones.

                    “If you want to stay in opposition forever continue to abuse, denigrate and blame voters who disagree with you. A little humility and self assessment can go along way. Try it.”

                    Medicine is unpleasant. Lets throw it out and drink coke instead.

                • alwyn

                  Can you please provide links to the supposed support for a CGT by Treasury, The Reserve Bank and the Tax Working Group?

                  In one of there bulletins the Reserve Bank said, for example
                  “One tax issue that periodically receives considerable attention
                  is capital gains taxation. Houses bought by investors with
                  the intention to resell are already, in principle, caught by the
                  income tax net, but New Zealand does not have a general
                  capital gains tax. The Reserve Bank has never taken a stance
                  on the general merits or otherwise of capital gains taxes”

                  In a letter to the Dom/Post John Shewan, former head of KPMG and a member of the Tax Working Group spoke out strongly against the proposed CGT. He is certainly one of New Zealand’s most informed people on the subject.

                  • Lanthanide

                    John Shewan supports a comprehensive capital gains tax including the family house.

                    Funnily enough, Labour listened to the electorate (which you lot claim they don’t) and realise that would be unpopular, and so ruled out the family home.

                    Reserve bank, 2007: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10446318
                    Treasury, 2013: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11145624
                    OECD, 2013: http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/oecd-urges-capital-gains-tax-deposit-insurance-and-regulatory-certainty-bd-141006
                    Tax working group, 2010: http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2010/01/tax_working_group_final_report.html points 7 and 8

                    You can google other things yourself.

                    Also here’s a Political Compass survey of 200,000 voters, where 50% Agreed or Strongly Agreed with the CGT as proposed by Labour, and only 30% Disagreed. Rather rebuts that the CGT lost Labour the election, eh?
                    http://tvnz.co.nz/vote-2014-news/compass-support-capital-gains-tax-6063134

                    • alwyn

                      Hmm.
                      The first reference is a story quoting Helen Clark as saying that the RBNZ recommend a CGT but that we, the Labour Party aren’t going to do it. The only RBNZ thing I can find says, in 2011

                      “One tax issue that periodically receives considerable attention
                      is capital gains taxation. Houses bought by investors with
                      the intention to resell are already, in principle, caught by the
                      income tax net, but New Zealand does not have a general
                      capital gains tax. The Reserve Bank has never taken a stance
                      on the general merits or otherwise of capital gains taxes”.

                      In other words they deny what was attributed to them.

                      The report of the tax working group actually referred to the CGT in point 6 where they said
                      “6. Most members of the TWG have significant concerns over the practical challenges arising from a comprehensive CGT ”
                      and in the full report they said they didn’t recommend it.

                      Points 7 and 8 were not about capital gains. They were about imputing returns from investments, which is what was done by Michael Cullen for investments made by New Zealand taxpayers overseas.
                      “7. The majority of the TWG support detailed consideration of taxing returns from capital invested in residential rental properties on the basis of a deemed notional return calculated using a risk-free rate.
                      8. Most members of the TWG support the introduction of a low-rate land tax as a means of funding other tax rate reductions”

                      I can’t find, at the moment, anything that gives the actual Treasury view. Interpretations by politicians, like the one by Helen Clark on the RBNZ that was quoted by the Herald are notoriously self serving.

                      The OECD did recommend it but in a very general manner.

                      Perhaps you can show any case where I said that the Labour Party don’t listen to the electorate?

                      A CGT can work if it is all-encompassing. That is it must include all assets, including the family home and must allow for losses as well as gains. If you don’t do that you have a situation that John Key correctly described as one you can drive a bus through.

          • Lanthanide 1.1.1.1.2

            I don’t think pandering to false conceptions and beliefs is in the best interest of the country.

          • RedBaronCV 1.1.1.1.3

            So it is better to lie or conceal your true intentions and then in power just do what you were always going to? An awful lot of the right wing think in simplistic dishonesty terms.

    • Tracey 1.2

      Genuine question Gossie.

      If we factor out that Labour needs to be more like National, what do you think they could focus on being to gain mainstream voters, policy wise, to make inroads but not merely swap themselves for National.

      • Gosman 1.2.1

        To be honest the best approach Labour could do is actually to do less.

        Focus on a two or three key areas that are traditional Labour party territory but ones that won’t frighten the middle much.

        More emphasis on Poverty reduction and support for business and workers at some level. If you are going to discuss a brand new tax make sure you are all over the policy prior to the campaign so you can get the message out. And have a leader that most people like, not just the hard core activist base and the Unions.

        • Tracey 1.2.1.1

          Thats all?

          Their policies absolutely provided support for business and workers at some level.

          Unions had 20% of the leadership vote. Membership 40%.

          How do you choose a leader that peolle like, i mean how do you practically do that.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.2

          So, leave all the big, grown up stuff to National?

          Yeah, don’t think so. National is like a child in a lolly shop with no parents around when in government. Throws lollies to their (rich) mates, make a mess and generally fuck up the economics of the shop (New Zealand).

          • Gosman 1.2.1.2.1

            National had hardly any major policies out there. They campaigned on a few key (pardon the pun) policies or concepts even. The main one being that we are a competent pair of hands that has helped guide you through the troubled times and are now able to start to look to provide a bit more of assistance to people who need it. I know most of you lot think that is rubbish but almost 50 % of those who voted bought the idea and hence why you lot are suffering another three years on the crosss benches.

            • Tracey 1.2.1.2.1.1

              Ok, so to confirm, you have really changed your first answer to

              Its all about perception, perception over substance. Why not just say that instead of starting to pretend it was about policy or ideology.

              • Draco T Bastard

                +1

              • Gosman

                Are you attempting to try and score points here or something rather than engage in a discussion?

                That is not what I stated at all. I stated that in my view Labour needs to keep it’s message simple and focus on a few key left wing policies that will appeal to the electorate.

                Having a scattergun approach might appeal to the activists but as you discovered winning activists over does not win you broad based support.

                • Tracey

                  you have said almost nothing specific except that perception is more important than substance.

                  if you cant name specific things that are not nat policy thats fine.

                  • Gosman

                    I have given you the areas that Labour should focus attention on. Poverty alievation (maybe a targetted increase in benefit levels paid for by cutting welfare to those who don’t need it) and support for business development (Maybe greater spending on skills and regional development at the expense of corporate welfare).

                    Additionally Labour could stop being anti-everything National has implemented. Look to stand up against the influence of the Unions and then people might not be so suspicious of the motives behind the policies.

                    I suspect you are wanting me to agree that the current policy mix Labour has got is great in this regard. Quite obviously it isn’t because most people rejected the party this election. It is not down to just policies but they help define the party and the current definition isn’t working.

            • aerobubble 1.2.1.2.1.2

              Agreed. Labour should stick with finance. Sold itself on one change. CGT. And let Greens do the social programs with David “only when we can afford it’ Parker. Keep it simple stupid. But the Greens and Labour have yet to decide to openly work together. Norman even asked them to cost their program – or as I like to look at it – the party I voted for telling Labour to pull its finger out.

  2. Ad 2

    Point 2 and 3 contradict each other. Dirty politics was blog driven.

    Point 5 assumes people vote for John Key. They vote more for their economic and social interests. He simply represents that.

    Points 8 and 9 need to talk to each other.

    Your final point about fundraising is closely tied to Labour failing to explain its New taxes. The wealthy will give if they can see the country will benefit as a result. They largely couldn’t see that.

    I think this great readership needs to be the primary site for Labour and the Greens to unite and prepare to be the coalition of 2017. We can be better and bigger than Whaleoil. We can take on the MSM. The answer sure isn’t in the party management. The answer primarily is us.

    • mickysavage 2.1

      Thanks Ad

      A challenge to everyone. Which policies were too left wing? Which ones would you change?

      And also a challenge to the narrative about Cunliffe moving the party to the left. The formation of policy is a party process that he was very careful to allow to continue. So which policies did he change?

      • Blackcap 2.1.1

        I think it is not so much in the policy that Labour were promoting. It is more in the perception. More so because on the “right” it is perceived that Cunliffe is a Union appointment. Also the CGT is a left wing policy, but for a centre right voter not a breaker. It’s things like “NZ Power” that are a breaker for a lot on the right. I could vote Shearer but I cannot vote for Cunliffe, so maybe it does have to do with personalities as well. For whatever reason, I trust Shearer and do not trust Cunliffe. I hope Labour do rebuild and become the party they once were as we need a strong centre left opposition/govt.

        • Colonial Viper 2.1.1.1

          More so because on the “right” it is perceived that Cunliffe is a Union appointment.

          I mean, WTF this is just stupid. Maybe the dumbass rank and file right wing who believe WO to be gospel, but the leadership of the National Party know that it is the general membership who put Cunliffe into the Leadership – and who will keep him there.

          I suggest you keep voting for John Key.

          • Once was Pete 2.1.1.1.1

            Well, that is just plain ignorant, and a reflection of the attitudes that have lost the middle ground to Labour. Everyone who doesn’t think like you has to be denigrated and pushed away. That is also a reason why this blog can’t do the job suggested by Ad above. According to Andrew Little the voting power is 20% union, 40% caucus and 40% membership. At least that is what he said on radio yesterday morning. You think the unions don’t get two bites at this cherry, first through its own vote and then through its members?

            • millsy 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Why do you hate unions Peter? Is it because they keep wages high and stop us from having to work in some stinking sweatshop for $2 an hour with no sick leave and holiday pay?

              Why Peter, WHY??

            • aerobubble 2.1.1.1.1.2

              Why was Shearer dropped? He says disunity. I say he wasn’t firing, but that could have been smart, growing a sense of stability.

              Cunliffe’s greatest flaw is he never got onside with media, but that’s part and parcel with his inability to sell a CGT.

              Which Shearer or Goff still hasn’t, didn’t, either. Parket is the only Labour MP that has come close, but missed pushing the buttons for voters, or listening to their fears and answering.

              Labour failed because it simply does not want to win, why would that be. They are all in the top bracket, why talk about the tax cut they gave them a bonus, or a CGT that harms their families trust ownership of rental houses, or whatever.

              Cunliffe lives in oen of the most expensive suburbs, etc. Labour to win need someone like them. COmes out of S.Auckland, smart, with a name like Lange.

          • Grantoc 2.1.1.1.2

            “I suggest you keep voting John Key”……….Along with at least 50% of the electorate Viper (those that you describe as ‘dumbass’).

            The arrogance of your ‘dumbass’ attitude as applied to voters who disagree with your policy positions, if shared by your colleagues on the Left will simply mean that you’ll be in opposition forever.

            Maybe that’s what you want

        • millsy 2.1.1.2

          So why dont you like the NZ Power polcy? Do you think power prices should just go up and up and up, and people struggle to pay their power bill — and this is due to the deregulation and profit motive in the power industry. People like you, buy shares in power companies and demand higher dividends and higher rents from your rental property and wonder why people cannot afford to feed their kids.

          We had a bloody good system before 1993-99, and people like you couldnt stomach people paying bugger all on their power bills.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.2.1

            +1

          • Gosman 2.1.1.2.2

            The fact you think regulating the Wholesale market will lower prices when the majority of the price rises recently are as a result of the infrastructure costs highlights how out of touch the left is.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.2.2.1

              Infrastructure costs that had been delayed to boost profits and dividends and thus actually ended up costing even more than if they’d been done at the right time. The competitive model is the failure as it increases costs. Adding the costs of privatisation to it will make it even worse.

        • millsy 2.1.1.3

          And I am not sure what you have against unions? Where the fuck do you think sick leave comes from.

          Were it not for unions, wages would be $ 2 per hour, with no sick leave or holiday pay,

          • Once was Pete 2.1.1.3.1

            I know you didn’t address that remark to me, but I have the same thing against unions that I have against big business. Their position doesn’t always reflect what is good for everyone else. Unions have a grip on the Labour party that is restrictive. Not every left voter is a union supporter and that has to be kept front and centre if you want to get the middle ground back.

            • millsy 2.1.1.3.1.1

              Do you want to restrict people’s rights to form and join unions?
              Do you want to see unions banned:?
              Do you want to get rid of sick leave?
              Do you want to privatise education and cut welfare?

              • BM

                All the above.

                I also want roving squads of men in blue uniforms wearing John Key masks rounding up people who look left wing and sending them off to reeducation camps so they learn the errors of their ways.

                Also because I believe in an equal opportunity work force, there will be woman involved in the rounding up process, the only difference is they’ll be wearing Paula Bennett masks.

            • RedBaronCV 2.1.1.3.1.2

              So the big business and overseas donor grip on the NAct party reflects what is good for everyone else -I don’t think so.

            • Tracey 2.1.1.3.1.3

              the unions which are affiliated to labour, and not all are, got a 20% vote toward a leader. unions represent about 23% of the workforce. there is little or no evidence that they have a “tight grip” on the LP.

              if you think the key to lp future is distancing itself further from the unions what you are looking for coukd be

              nzf
              uf
              national.

      • her 2.1.2

        Capital Gains Tax has lost Labour two elections now.

        We have John key with his usual lies “maybe tax cuts” or “I won’t put up gst”

        and Labour comes in and offers us CGT as if it is something people might want.

        • millsy 2.1.2.1

          CGT will pay for schools and hospitals and it will hit the slum lords?

          We can either have US style health care and people on the streets, or a CGT. You choose.

          And dont give me that shit about rent going up, because landlords are hiking their rent anyway, Greedy pigs.

        • Once was Pete 2.1.2.2

          They also forgot we have a capital gains tax in place that the IRD has been policing more rigorously of late. So if you have a second property and you sell it for a profit you are already liable for tax at the prevailing rate.
          That is why the CGT made no sense at all. If the place of residence was exempt why introduce another tax to replace one that is already there. Better surely to look at what is there and see how to make it work better. Everyone could see the sense of that.

          • Tracey 2.1.2.2.1

            Stats for that please pete? Number of second+ properie in nz versus ones sold and taxed? TIA

            • Granted 2.1.2.2.1.1

              You get taxed if it was was your intention at the time of purchase to re-sell for a profit. If you have a pattern of buying and selling houses the IRD will assess you for tax.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.3

          I don’t think it was the CGT that lost Labour votes – I think it was the retirement policy. I believe (seen it somewhere) that most people support a CGT. The people who don’t are the speculators who prefer not to pay tax.

        • Kevin Welsh 2.1.2.4

          I think they should just do what National does. Have a whole lot of ‘unofficial’ policy that only gets rolled out once in power.

          The left need to be better organised, work together, and be a lot more cunning. Talk a conservative game but plan a liberal one once in power.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1.2.4.1

            +100

            Express a set of values, point to the historical track record, don’t get bogged down in detail, hammer the government with the fact that they belong behind bars.

          • Andrew Welsh 2.1.2.4.2

            The left be “cunning”? You have a greater chance of beating a family member in a friendly game of Trivial Pursuit than you do of your beloved left actually showing some initiative.

      • brian 2.1.3

        I think the public were scared of massive changes. Whether that is true or not is less important than the perception. I think a better idea is to HAVE A VISION; have a direction with some changes well thought out, and well discussed. Carry those out, and carry the public. If successful do a little more, second term, third term. Make sure the public is with you. People may want change, but incremental change that can be seen to be beneficial and achieving things.

        Having a vision is the vital first start. That’s something that Labour does not see to understand at the moment. It’s quite a different thing than agreeing to a wish list from every left leaning sympathising organisations.

        The vision may be something as simple as reducing inequality. Fairness.

        There are massive changes that could easily be dreamed up to make real gains here. But to appear to promise to carry it all out on Day one would be stupid. Promise little more in 2017, than is likely to be achieved in three years. Keep the vision in front. Show that small tax restructuring has not caused businesses to collapse. Promise more only when this evidence is there to justify it.

        Appeal to fairness from those who will be losers (eg the CEOs, who may only get $200000 and not $300000 ……. and the entrepreneurs who will not relish taking all the risks of success, and then thinking they will have to give away a disproportionate amount of the benefits of success)

        It takes TIME. To change from a Dictatorship to a Democracy. It takes less time to change from Left to Right, or Right to Left in New Zealand, but Time should not be underestimated. Coupled with ethics, honesty, and lots of real education (not just propaganda). And a willingness to make changes if necessary, without concern for being a “flip flop”

        Work cooperatively with other parties who will be required to be coalition parties (eg do not snub the Greens and attack Mana, as Labour did this time) Be clear on what you have in common, and what policies you disagree on. In other words have a brand for each party that will let the punters know they have a real power to influence direction. They like Green policy better in one area ….they can vote Green, and know that there will still be a Labour Green coalition, which is weighted towards the most desired policies. Instead of fighting coalition partners, use the choices to the Left advantage.

        I’ll be interested in finding out, eventually, what the vision is that Labour thinks it has. It seems clearer for both the Greens and even Mana.

        • Chooky 2.1.3.1

          +100 brian…well thought out…agreed

          * “Having a vision is the vital first start”…(imo Labour lacks PAN LEFT VISION and passion and coalition strategy intelligence …more like insular careers and jobs for the boys bureaucracy party)

          * “Work cooperatively with other parties who will be required to be coalition parties (eg do not snub the Greens and attack Mana, as Labour did this time)”…agreed…imo

          1.) Labour shafted the Int /Mana Party via not stategically endorsing Hone Harawira …but instead actively setting out to ROLL him …not a good look for potential Labour supporters on the General Roll..my teenage son was outraged…and he was ready to Party vote Labour!..instead the Greens got his vote.
          .2.) .Labour refused to partner the Greens pre the Election…and they remained in competition not co-operation over crucial seats like Ohuria and Auckland Central…letting the Nact right block candidates in…unforgiveable imo!
          3.) Labour stomped on the Maori Party as a possible Left coalition-partner… even before Labour had won!…what the fuck?…terrible arrogant incompetent strategy)

          While I have long defended the Labour Party as a leader of a Left coalition …seeing its role as an elder, if a somewhat faded middle- of- the- road, statesman in a Left coalition….I did not expect to see it EAT IT’S CHILDREN! … especially good children like the Greens and INT/Mana who do have passion and who do have VISION ( like the old Labour Party when it was set up)

          Like some of my friends …reluctantly I now no longer see the Labour Party as being viable

      • Enough is Enough 2.1.4

        Micky

        There was no problem with the policy platform or where Cunliffe and the wider leadership group positioned the party.

        The issue was leadership.

        A leader that cannot galvanise his caucus, unfortunately is not suitable to lead a party through an election.

        We need a leader who can unite the broad range of MP’s. Cunliffe will never be the person to do that.

        The alternative is to purge the caucus. That isn’t going to happen.

        • Dennis Scoles 2.1.4.1

          Leadership was definitely the major issue in the election result. I have been a Labour voter most of my life, as my parents were, but in the last two elections the leadership of the party has been poor, in fact, I go as far as to say that many people consider Cunliffe a goat. It was a great shock to many Labour people when David Shearer was dumped, he is a Statesman, an old style politician who gathers respect. Now Labour is set to make another mistake and select another leader who with not gel with the vast majority of voters.
          David Shearer is the only man in the party that can bring respect back to Labour, and with respect, the return of a majority vote.
          I believe the attack on John Key was unwarranted, the line Cunliffe took, virtually falling into Kim Dotcom’s trap, was unfortunate, as were the happenings in Australia with the terrorist scare, the week of the election.
          As a country we need strong anti-terrorist measures, if that means monitoring individuals, get over it, if you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear. Labour as a whole needs to rethink its stand on security.
          Good luck David Shearer, only you can bring me back to the party.
          Dennis.

      • sabine 2.1.5

        policies i hated?

        *compulsory kiwi safer without guaranteeing a payout in the end.

        You can’t force people to safe without giving them access to the money that would simply be wage theft.

        there is a similar saving scheme in germany which is made available every 6 years to the saver. Considering that peoples lives change it would be good to look at something like this in NZ.

        http://translate.google.co.nz/translate?hl=en&sl=de&u=http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verm%25C3%25B6genswirksame_Leistung&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dvermoegenswirksames%2Bspar%2Bgesetz%26rlz%3D1C1CHLI_en-gbNZ474NZ475%26espv%3D2%26biw%3D1600%26bih%3D898

        * a promoted living wage for governmental workers as discussed in the case of janitors but not for all. We really don’t need to create a three tier employment system of minim wagers in private business, contractors and governmental workers. We can let the right do that.

        *and I really wanted someone to say something like, all WINZ benefits are going to be made transparent. i.e. xx $ for unemployment for the first 3 month etc etc

        again if you look at Germany people actually know what their rights and benefits are
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unemployment_benefits#Germany

        in saying that i did not consider any of the aforementioned as too left, if anything i did not consider them left enough.

        I want my Labour Party Left wing, if I wanted to march lockstep with the blue shirts i could have voted Jk. And I am proud to say i have never voted for that pinhead and i never will.

  3. quartz 3

    Hi Anthony, I’ll ask you what I’m asking everyone else who has claimed Labour moves to the centre: What major left wing policy would you dump?

    The economic growth fund?

    Kiwibuild?

    The sovereign wealth fund?

    Best Start?

    Free GP visits?

    Capital Gains Tax?

    Raising the age of super?

    Smaller class-sizes?

    • Richard 3.1

      raising super never annoy someone’s grandkids.

      Free GP visits find something better to replace it with that means more to more people.

      In fact wipe them all and start again find out what issues concern the voters and focus on their concerns and keep up with their changing tack.

      Employment law reforms and the economic management of English were my main two issues. Do people really trust double dipper Bill? Was anything dirty said about his being finance minister when he rorts the system ? trust..English lack of idea’s

      Would be good to attack their weaknesses. Nationals monetary skills need more exposing they have no track record of economic management despite the perception they are the best at it. Labour needs the help of the media savy to help get this across to even up the playing field. Labour need to show a history of what they have dobne to repair nationals cock-ups of the economy.

      It’s all about the economy I keep hearing from experts.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        Seriously, just 85,000 more Labour voters out of that 1.2M and Key’s formation of a government this week would be completely on the ropes.

        Agree with you that raising super was a killer. Lost 1%-2% of votes there. Apart from the shitty policy which reveals all kinds of incorrect orthodox monetary thinking, Labour trying to pretend to play the neoliberal game of “we’re more fiscally responsible than you”, sucked, and sent all the wrong signals to people who should be core Labour supporters. “We’ll make sure you don’t miss out if you’re a physically broken down worker” was just adding salt to the wound.

        The suggestion of Labour becoming *even more* of a centrist party is not a good one IMO. Labour cannot and will not be able to beat National at the “fiscally responsible” “working with market forces” “government surplus” chasing game because that’s where National has more cred, and more bank economists on the news saying so.

        In my mind, it also effectively abandons the one million working class, underclass and youth who now do not vote at all.

        If we recall, after the last election Labour made big noises about reconnecting with the “missing million.” The weekend has shown that not only has Labour not known how to do that, but the number has actually grown to probably 1.1M to 1.2M.

        And that is Labour’s core problem – not its policy mix or tax package but its social and cultural disconnection from people who are its core voters.

        • millsy 3.1.1.1

          I think Labours super policy was an effort to target the centre.

          Labour policy was pretty moderate IMO, largely focusing on tweaking or reviewing National’s policy, rather than scrapping it — ie student loans, etc.

          Nothing in it about ensuring water stays in public ownerships, and no resurrection of the NZ Forestry Service, Ministry of Works, etc.

          National’s policy around broadband was more left — creating publcily owned fibre networks around the country (and a quick check of the Companies register shows that 15% of Chorus is owned by the government’s Crown Fibre Holdings).

          There was no leap to the 1970’s in Labour’s manifesto.

        • just saying 3.1.1.2

          And that is Labour’s core problem – not its policy mix or tax package but its social and cultural disconnection from people who are its core voters.

          I don’t think this is reparable. The cultural and socio-economic divide in this country means we are living in different worlds more than ever was the case. Whatever the rights and wrongs, Labour will never be Labour again and the people of Labour are not going to ever get over that divide. I know there are many kind and decent people who can’t understand, but who assume that, occupying the same nation state, they actually do. I think being on the other side of the counter or the doctor’s surgery or whatever just adds to this particular illusion, creates even more distance.

          Those who wanted Labour to “return to it’s roots” need to accept defeat, move out, and leave the other good people to it. Maybe it is a good thing – the connections of these people to those who stay behind with the party might mean that Labour is actually prepared to work cooperatively with the left in the future. Maybe Labour can split up and have one of those civilised divorces I keep hearing about. For the sake of everything being at stake.

          • weka 3.1.1.2.1

            I also can’t see how Labour can resolve its internal cultural problems, other than by slow attrition over the long term, and even then it seems unlikely because the membership would have to stick with the mess all that time.

            I see the internal cultural issues as separate from the voter disconnect cultural issues. The internal issues are preventing the voter ones from being addressed.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2

        Free GP visits find something better to replace it with that means more to more people.

        That’s an easy one – free GP visits for all. GP clinics would be government owned and the GPs hired by the government.

        In fact wipe them all and start again find out what issues concern the voters and focus on their concerns and keep up with their changing tack.

        That’s a good idea and one I’m fully in agreement with. Unfortunately, many seem to be against becoming more democratic and think that policies should only be decided top party officials. A lot of people are also against the necessary online voting required to bring this about.

        Employment law reforms

        The one policy that I’m fond of is legislating in favour of cooperatives. Making it easier for them to be set up, get loans etc. And having government support and encouragement for setting them up.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      The economic growth fund, the sovereign wealth fund and Raising the age of Super are right-wing policies.

      • KJT 3.2.1

        Exactly.

        A sign that Labour has not escaped from the neo-liberal paradigm which has made the majority of New Zealanders poorer.

        Shearers childish outburst showed exactly why he would not have made a good leader, and that he is a better fit in National, were-as David Cunliffe, has learned on the job, and got better and better.

        If Labour gets rid of Cunliffe, for the right wing of the party, who were prepared to white ant the election, and the Greens and Mana, because of their own pique at being over-ridden by a democratic vote of the membership, then they are truly headed for oblivion.

        What is the point of power when the principles have been abandoned?

        I have taken my own unscientific survey. Almost all the working class around me voted for NZ first or the Greens on Party vote.
        The biggest influence was the super policy. The cognitive dissonance of saying we cannot afford a 2% increase in the top tax rate to continue with super, but we can afford to gift up to 9% of wages to the private superannuation industry, to lose in the next GFC for us, was obvious.
        Also the disarray they have been in for most of the last 6 years.

        A lot of the media BS about Cunliffe didn’t even register. Most of us are very disillusioned with politicians and the media. They see him as a decent and thoughtful person, just like Helen Clark when you met her.

        A choice for many between National. Cynical and dishonest, but seemingly competent and Labour, a bunch of self seeking clowns in caucus, which didn’t get their shit together, or get behind their leader, until a few weeks ago.
        I can understand why so many didn’t bother to vote. All you get is a another lot of 3 year dictators who do what they like.
        I was almost tempted to vote for the nutcase Craig, because of the BCIR policy. It beggars belief that we leave our future in the hands of the, mostly, egotistical and arrogant incompetents, in Parliament.

    • brian 3.3

      This list epitomises the problems with Labour. It’s very much like we were offered at the recent election, but it went for multiple pages

      It’s even got a “major policy” being a Capital Gains Tax!
      I tell you what. I do not want ANY taxes. And if the best that Labour can promise me is a potentially enormous tax, I probably will not read much further. I’ll move straight on to some other party who has passed “Sales 101”

      I do not want tax. I do not want the age of super being raised. I’m sure that 99% of everybody will agree with me there.

      But I do not mind paying for what I, as a New Zealander, will receive.

      What about offering a “fair society”? A society without the blatant unfairness that shows inequality (by any measure) is much greater than it was 30 years ago? (Perhaps not much greater then a Specific day seven months ago). And with this fairer society I am likely to receive a place to live where people are safer, crime will reduce etc. It’s useful to know that Labour consider that the cost of GP visits has become too high and therefore inaccessible for many children, and is a high priority issue that they hope to take action on.

      It sounds good. I’d love to take this “fair society” out of the shop with me right now. How much will I have to pay to purchase this attractive package? First I’ll have to work a little longer, and not get super for a year or two later. Sounds good. My life expectancy is probably ten years longer than my parents, so working a little longer seems ok, especially because I note that if my health deteriorates, there will be some exemption for specific conditions (perhaps). I also note that this Labour shop, is saying that the “fair society” they are offering, will also cost me some tax on the gains in value on all my holiday homes. This will cost a little, because I’m a rich prick like Dotcom, but just like Dotcom, I can understand the benefits of “fairness”

      I walk out of Shop Labour. It’s not compulsory to purchase the “Fair Society” that Shop Labour is selling. I can go to Shop ACT who will even give me BACK some money, and promise me an even “unfairer” society, where I will also need all of that money to pay the mates of Shop ACT for just some of the services I get for free now. Although there is some hint the taxes may have to stay as they are to pay for the hundreds of “Lock em up and throw away the key” prisons that will be built in most towns and city suburbs.

      Or I can go to Shop National, where I can get more of the same, where they are selling a different sort of “fairness” that gives everyone the “equal” right to win Lotto or make obscene amounts of money as a trader. They are trying not be seen as the mean guys by introducing a nasty Capital Gains tax, but will need to decrease all benefits to help pay the costs of High CEO wages.

      What I am saying is that I’m willing to be sold a vision.
      If the vision of a “Fair Society” appeals at Shop Labour, I will be quite happy accepting the price. If the vision does not appeal I can avoid the payment by buying an alternative definition of a “Fair Society” at the Dirty Shop , or even receiving a refund by throwing away any sort of “Fair Society” I have currently at the Act Shop.

    • lurgee 3.4

      I don’t think these policies are left wing. That’s the problem. We’ve allowed John Key to completely define what is the centre. He’s constantly tell us rightwing market ‘solutions’, deregulation and advantaging the wealthy is centrist. It isn’t and we need to stop him getting away with it.

      The problem is the people who are already saying the reason so many people voted for Key was because Labour wasn’t left enough on that platform, and the solution is a long march to the left.

    • sabine 3.5

      re Kiwi build

      if labour would not build assets, what would National have to sell?

  4. Carlos 4

    quartz,

    CGT – homeowners too scary to mess with
    Super – oldies vote, don’t go there

    But most important is the brand, and the so called Man-Ban and Cunliffe’s apology were poison for the brand. The left needs provincial & suburban males

  5. Richard 5

    I like David, I found him strong and someone I could finally follow who looked and acted like a leader. Was I that wrong? RE point 7 ? I’m just a working man don’t consider myself an activist just a person not so keen for a smiley wavy flake of a PM.

    I see most NZ love him and want a selfie with him.

    Not enough is being done to show they have no economic policy and it’s all about to go belly up.

    On the bright side many said leave em in to clean up the mess that’s 88 billion and growing on that maybe Cunliffe having to open the books like Lange did wasn’t such a bad thing to avoid. Just saying, I feel national will reap the rewards of their artificially propping up the economy with borrowing to claw back a surplus to crow about.

    half of me also thinks they may have wanted Labour to win really for that reason, let labour take the blame for the austerity they would have to introduce to pay it off. ? This is going to come back to bite them sooner than I care to think sadly for me and my tax outgoings.

    • Clashman 5.1

      “On the bright side many said leave em in to clean up the mess that’s 88 billion and growing”

      The bright side? FFS man thats gonna be their excuse to cut funding, sell anything thats left and privatise the rest.

  6. newsense 6

    There was the failed differentiation: sorry for being a man and the right to innocence v. the All Blacks. Labour lost the male vote in a big way.

    Let’s not forget Cunliffe’s popularity increased in this election. Part of the electoral punishment hasn’t been rearranging the deck chairs, but the whole team. Cosgrove wasn’t exactly the trump card in the Press debate.

    Team renewal is a big problem. National’s reboot owes a lot to Michelle Boag. Labour needs to have a clear 3 year vision and have some quality lined up to come in.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      I think when the numbers come in, lower male support vs female support for Labour will account for a full 1.5%-2.5% of the drop in Labour’s result. And the overall female vote will either be steady or be down as well.

  7. shona 7

    Change the leader again? Why? Labour will continue to languish. will continue to be seen as unstable. Stand up and fight you spineless gaspers in the centre. Shearer was appalling as a leader . A media joke and plaything and that will not change. So Now I am beginning to believe where the Labour electorate voters who voted for National with their party vote came from. This is the war on the left that is still going on and why Labour will lose again in 2017.
    It’s all semantics anyway. New Zealand is lost and will never recover from the now ingrained corruption of the National government. Too many good honest bureaucrats have gone.Too many competent educators sidelined. The environment is rooted it will never fully recover. Chunks of the conservation estate will continue to be desecrated and given to foreigners for a song and a free lunch. The waterways are doomed and will never recover. Climate change will overtake agriculture and decimate it.We are looking at significant areas of native forest collapsing and not being able to regenerate. No one cares no reports are written. those who voice concern are denigrated by the possessors of comfortable jobs in DOC.
    You’re just part of the band on the Titanic Rob.
    Like many other core Labour supporters ( it had been a long time since I’d voted Labour I can tell you) I will withdraw my support for Labour if Cunnliffe goes. Shearer continues to lose votes in his electorate. By standing candidates in closely fought electorates the Greens robbed Labour of at least 3 seats and 4 or 5 mp’s. No doubt the lack of support from the ABC’s contributed to the idiotic FPP posturing. Not one member of the ABC ‘s would have done a better job than Cunliffe. His job would have been considerably less arduous with their wholehearted support. LAbour had the least visibility it has ever had in any campaign I have seen them fight.
    Oh and you just condemned another chunk of the young to lives resident in other parts of the world thanks to Saturday’s result.
    Bu then why would you care You’re Ok eh Mate? And that’s kiwi’s for ya!

    • Olwyn 7.1

      Well said Shona – my thoughts as well.

      Since the Lange-Douglas government, it has only been in the Clark period that we had a respite from revolving door leadership. This will continue so long as Labour does not resolve the internal contradictions that arose back then and have haunted the party ever since.

      Labour began its life as the defender of the worker against the power of capital. Your points, Anthony, from 6 to 9, suggest you think that the election has shown that capital has won decisively, that Labour should now give up the fight and find itself a niche among the victors. Let the people who Labour has failed for much of the past 30 years go find another party. I profoundly disagree. Not only is this bad faith of the first order, it will not raise the vote so much as shift it round the spectrum a bit. Only finding a way to fulfill Labour’s mission under the current conditions will do.

      • Tracey 7.1.1

        the right was not overwhelmingly more popular than the left. Look at the vote percentages. There is a significant percentage of the population that didnt want right wing policies. I agree with olwyn and shona.

        I expect greens vote to drop from the polls but to 10% surprised me. I do think a number of righties who told me they would party vote green changed in the booth to nats.

        If you havent read hollow men and dirty politics and wisharts book with key on the cover. Read them. Combined you understand what the left is up against. A highly funded web of interests working to undermine the left and disguise the real personality of the right.

        I dont blame people for voting as they have. There is a sophisticated expensive machine driving that vote in a ruthless way like a massive advertising campaign.

        Too many people say labour needs to move right. Essentialky be like national more to get the middle voter. I say be certain of who you want to represent and fucking represent them. Thats what the Greens do, and they stay on message. Labour doesnt have to outdo the greens, let the greens be the greens and labour have some crossover but make up yoyr minds what you want to be.

        Stop apologising or ignoring the union movement. Embrace it and spend three years selling it. The benefits such workers gain, wages, health care packages, working conditions, … Assist in getting union membership up by 10% in three years.

        Work with unions to educate the population. The unions seem to be your most valuable resource stop staying silent as though you are embarrassed.

        I see the alleged in fighting has started. Shearer seems to think the answer is to be the everyman. If he thinks that will succeed i can tell him it will only succeeed when key has gone and then what? We have a version of National again.

        Courage is a scary word to politicians but the courageous are usually the ones who leave a legacy.

        Dont run a strong electorate candidate in epsom. DUMB.

        Put kelvin higher up your list and dont run in tai tokerau. What you did was DUMB

        Talk to the Greens about them not standing in Ohariu. Cos what you did was DUMB

        Those three decisions sugest to me you are a party still consumed by a self serving caucus who are not prepared to put the greater good ahead of themselves.

        If those three results had gone differently, and they could have, what would parliament look like this morning.

        Labour says it stands for everyone but it looks like it stands for its caucus.

        • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1

          I dont blame people for voting as they have. There is a sophisticated expensive machine driving that vote in a ruthless way like a massive advertising campaign.

          This is a crucial point. Alongside this is blaming the non-vote. Sorry, but Labour and the Greens (and IM) did not personally connect with the people they said they would, after making loads of noise post 2011 about the “missing million”. More people stayed home this time than last time even though there was 2 weeks of advance voting.

          Many natural Labour supporters and those down and out, spent those 2 weeks walking by, driving by, advance polling booths, never once thinking of going in and standing up for themselves. THAT’S the problem.

          85,000 more Labour votes out of 1.2M non-voters, and Key would be on the ropes this week trying to form a government. I mean, FOR FUCKS SAKE Labour can get those votes any number of ways and chasing soft National voters does not have to be what it chooses to do.

          • Tracey 7.1.1.1.1

            you reckon greens werent trying to mobilise non voters. But who knew their message. Where are these peolle to personally connect with cv? Reading papers, watching tge news? Probably getting on with their lives relatively disinterested in politics.

            So, this personal connection, if not via media, including social media, where and how?

            • weka 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Everyone was trying to get out the vote and it didn’t work.

              I don’t think this is just about the parties not doing the right thing. Labour might be missing their core voters, but I don’t think the GP are, and they still didn’t increase their vote.

              I think it’s actually ok to focus on why people didn’t vote and look at that before rushing to tell the parties that they didn’t try hard enough or didn’t do the right things.

              We’re missing a big piece of the puzzle here.

              • weka

                I’m going to qualify that a bit. The vote did increase on 2011, just not as much as was hoped for or expected. So something worked to an extent. What was it?

                • Richard

                  I know, it was the small percentage that were so annoyed the really crap weather on voting day wasn’t enough to stop them. The rest looked outside, and said I can’t be arsed today it’s pissing down.

              • karol

                I think maybe the GP focused too much on digital aps for getting out their supporters – social media, phone calls, etc.

                This also needs to be supplemented by more focused on face-to-face connecting with people in communities. Starting now.

                I did a bit of volunteering. i talked to one or two people. Also, read Lynn’s analysis: the Greens need stronger organisation at the flax roots in the electorates – not necessarily working for the electorate votes, but working to engage more with community groups and local campaigns.

                More Greens need to get out from behind their desks, their computers, and their phones. that’s what prompted me to volunteer.

                And I am now thinking of focusing my own energies more at the community-based flax roots, than relying so much on social media, blogs, etc.

                If I had more confidence in any one left wing party, I’d join for the first time in my life. But I have quibbles about the values and approach of all of them.

                • weka

                  I agree karol.

                  I used to go to local meetings in the late 90s when I lived in a bigger town than I do now. The thing that impressed me and increased my support for the party was that the people at the meetings were all involved in local grassroots green and social justice issues and that those things got discussed at the meeting. Not just politically, but actively with projects like habitat restoration.

                  I also noted how transparent the party’s democratic processes were.

                  I live in a small place now, so I don’t really know what is going on, but from the outside the processes are way less transparent, and I’m hazarding a guess that local meetings are more focussed on admin and bigger party issues than local issues. I know there are GP members here who are active so perhaps they could comment? I’m sure it varies from place to place too.

                  I signed up to do some of the phone calls for the GP pre-election. Their phone list was people that had at some point given the GP their phone number. I can see what they were trying to do, but I didn’t like the system particularly, esp the whole leader board thing where my name was visible to other people doing the phoning and we were all getting points for how many phone calls we made (it wasn’t clear how points were allocated). This visibility wasn’t explained beforehand. Call me old fashioned, but I think such things should be opt in, or at the least opt out. It put me off.

                  Then they had that problem in Chch where they put in submissions using people’s names without their permission.

                  What it looks like to me is that they’ve used a consultant for their digital strategy who doesn’t have a background in privacy and respect. Social media who add to existing social conventions, not replace them. I’ve noticed this before with the GP, that the development of new techniques seems to lose sight of some crucial things.

                  Having said that, I know that where I live now it’s hard to get people to go to any kind of meetings. People are too busy, and too overcommitted, and social media makes people feel like they’re doing their bit. The culture has changed and we’ve gained some things, but we’re stalling too.

                  • RedBaronCV

                    At least as some people said, the Greens used real people. Both Nact & Labour robo dialed. I think the points thing was just a distraction realting to more commercial uses of the programme.

                    And like anything I guess one size doesn’t fit all. More coffee house meetings, more calling, more attending school gala days, use social media???

          • weka 7.1.1.1.2

            http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/people_and_communities/Well-being/civic-human-rights/non-voters-2008-2011-gen-elections.aspx

            It’s worth looking at the larger % of disengaged non-voters, who say they forgot, or weren’t interested. They are a different group than those who feel like their vote doesn’t count and those who think all parties are the same.

            • Tracey 7.1.1.1.2.1

              my “son” registered for his first vote. went on friday cis he cldnt vote saturday cos of work then cricket.

              he found a booth got in the wrong queue. 15 mins later got to front and got pointed to new queue another 15 mins… got to front and told they had run out of forms. he didnt vote.

              • RedBaronCV

                Yes this running out for advance voting seems to have been quite widespread – why don’t they order more

        • marie 7.1.1.2

          I agree completely and utterly with what Tracey has said especially her comments about Labour moving to the right. It wasn’t left wing policies that caused people to stay home on election day, rather, it was wishy-washy policies designed to appeal to everyone.

          The Left looked like they couldn’t agree on much; and this played right into the hands of a corrupt media. Labour party candidates talking about extinct birds and, against party policy, expensive roading projects didn’t help either.

          Where’s the concern for or loyalty to the worst-off? Labour needs to rid itself of its self-serving elements and focus on its original mission.

          • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.2.1

            It wasn’t left wing policies that caused people to stay home on election day, rather, it was wishy-washy policies designed to appeal to everyone.

            Another spot on comment. Most people didn’t like National’s asset sell off. And National still won a majority of seats to govern alone. People know what National stand for and John Key does not apologise for it – in fact when under attack on asset sales or child poverty, he continues to speak directly to his constituency and his voters – the top 20% of NZ society.

        • Jenny Kirk 7.1.1.3

          Labour says it stands for everyone but it looks like it stands for its caucus.

          This says it all. I agree totally with Shona, Olwyn, and Tracy. Until Labour gets rid of the remnants of Rogernomics who are intent on putting themselves and their own interests first, then Labour will languish in the polls.

          Labour needs to re-think itself, make itself into a simpler organisation, concentrate on the ordinary working person and beneficiary, and get those people out voting.
          I’m not sure that the current “get out the vote” tactic worked : was it based on NZ experiences, or was too much borrowed from other places ? I don’t think the non-vote is gone as Antony Robbins says in 6 above – its still there, and it needs better activation.

          And Labour needs to be more strategic in discussion with other left parties (especially the Greens) and who should be voting for whom. A concentrated left vote for the Nat or United Future candidate in certain seats could well have made a difference.

          And the older Rogernomes, and the younger ones who’ve picked up on their rallying cry, need to shut up !

          Edit – the first par should be in italics, the rest of it is my comment.

        • George Hendry 7.1.1.4

          Kia ora tatou katoa. Thanks Anthony for this post to coordinate our comments. And Tracey, I’m replying to your post in the hope that mine won’t look too long by comparison.

          After considering LPrent’s advice to young bloggers for some time about not using one’s real name on blogs, I decided to go ahead and do it anyway, following the example of bloggers like Martyn Bradbury, Frank Macskasy, Stuart Munro and Anthony Robins. If this means taking some sort of risk then I’m curious about what form it might take – this blogsite is well moderated and debate seems mostly pretty constructive.

          Anthony’s point about ‘the permanent headwind’ we face puts it nicely, and your post Tracey gives several examples of the forms it is currently taking here. Historically, going back at least as far as things like the 100 years war and the 30 years war, human evolution can be summarised as a process whereby wealth becomes increasingly unequal until the peasants revolt and some sort of redistribution occurs, after which wealth immediately resumes the process of reunequalising. This is capitalism, not intrinsically a bad thing, but like a car with a locked steering wheel, goes ok but periodically needs stopping, picking up and straightening out, which is where we come in.

          The ‘right’ is constantly looking for new ways to justify and maintain unequal (fine) and unjust (not fine) wealth distribution. In the past there was no need to hide this but the more aware people become, the more it needs to be hidden, which is where monopolising the continuous media misrepresentation comes in.

          Whoever said ‘I would rather lose in a cause which will someday win than win in a cause which will someday lose’ summed up what we face, and that facing it, every day we go on caring and learning, will never be easy nor the best way obvious.

          But the general direction is clear enough. Education (which is why National want to privatise it / cut it back/ make it less affordable), building, keeping and maintaining social assets for all (which is why National are selling them off), caring for all (which is why National are marginalising and stigmatising the poor), encouraging meaningful and reasonably paid work (rather than cutting jobs and wages while lying about it), restorative justice (rather than industrialising criminals and cynically exploiting victims for PR), living sustainably (rather than being paid on the basis of how much pollution your industry causes) and perhaps even secretly gaming the vote ( I believe they would if they could, and there is circumstantial evidence that it may have been done this time) to deceive us into believing few know and none cares.

          Contesting elections is a tiny part of this…

          • Tracey 7.1.1.4.1

            Better put than mine George, and without expletives. I want to thank you for a very thought provoing piece.

            • George Hendry 7.1.1.4.1.1

              Thanks Tracey.

              As long as we keep conversing I believe we are likely to continue increasing our understanding. And one day enough of us will understand enough.

          • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.4.2

            Contesting elections is a tiny part of this…

            correct – the Left should be pouring its energy into building up left wing movements, infrastructure and alternative media channels (like The Standard) – not in focussing on returning struggling centrist MPs back to Parliament.

            • weka 7.1.1.4.2.1

              Can you please write a post around that?

              Edit to add, it would be good to have this conversation in a focussed way, not mixed in with everything else. Maybe not today, people are still too upset I think, but soon.

              • karol

                I’ve been pondering a post along such lines. But not just a media-focused strategy. The left needs to build on the ground, in person connections.

                I want to suggest some regular on the ground events in various centres – forums for debates, discussion and a bit of socialising. Something supported by all the opposition parties, and other organisations, but not organised by any political party.

                Although, I don’t have the skills or network connections to organise that myself.

                • RedBaronCV

                  I honestly think that “I’m out getting my F & C, cup of coffee, walking my dog, do you want to stop & say hello type tweeting might be sufficent contact for many. ” Must say I saw a lot of concerned people on doorsteps who were quite willing to talk and hopefully felt not so alone afterwards.

                  • karol

                    F & C? Walking and using public transport is good for some community contact.

                    The unions were a strong basis for Labour Party engagement in the early 20th century. As well as other community organisations. Since then civil society has diminished. twitter, etc, is focused around individual connections and less strongly involves community engagement.

        • sabine 7.1.1.5

          The greens wanted to go into government with Labour, they should have not had a candidate in Ohariu and Auckland Central. The Green candidate for Maugakiekie was equally wasted.

          If fact, i hope that the Greens turn left again, because that current smug full of themselves corporate Green Management lot is unbearable.

          And lucky for them, they will have enough to eat and warm houses.

    • Karen 7.2

      +100 Shona

    • greywarbler 7.3

      Stand up and fight you spineless gaspers in the centre.

      That’s the message you Labour deciders. Decide something different and dig down and look for the Labour roots. If you can’t find any get the bloddy heck out of the party, you pirate self-serving boarders, you self-centred middle class navel gazers. Wot about the workers is a call that still resonates. Particularly when you have overseen governmental measures that have resulted in the massive loss of jobs and enterprise and local business from this country.

      Cheap imports to balance your budgets and to dangle like the huge amount of cheap women’s clothes and plastic toys we are now swamped with, before our eyes, you cheap jerks. Bet you didn’t even get good pay offs from the lobbyists, you aren’t cunning enough.

      Mike Williams – this is a historic defeat, worst since 1922. I voted for David Cunliffe as leader before but wouldn’t do it again. I am talking about Grant Robertson, I am talking about David Parker.

      Michael Bassett, a former Labour politician, called in by Radionz for comment this morning.
      What a bloody insult by them – to offer this right wing subversive from the NZ subversive, white-anting termite group, as a worthy opinion maker.

      Here is a a lesson for what Labour should do by George from Seinfeld. Do the opposite of what you are now thinking, losers.

      edited

      • Colonial Viper 7.3.1

        Mike Williams – this is a historic defeat, worst since 1922. I voted for David Cunliffe as leader before but wouldn’t do it again. I am talking about Grant Robertson, I am talking about David Parker.

        I think that would be a mistake. Cunliffe had just 11 months in the Leaders office, and only 6 months for new staff and structures to settle in. It would be short changing Labour of Cunliffe’s visibility, experience and ability to go to a new Leader now. Major change needs to happen in the Labour Party, but changing Leaders now will only change the face on the defeat.

        • greywarbler 7.3.1.1

          @ colonial viper 11.36
          I agree with you. I was trying to write down verbatim what I just heard that bastion of solid Labour thought saying on Radionz. Pfffft!

          For him, and his ilk, I have found a little Baldrick advice on survival.
          (Can go in with all the other gems in the list of Labour’s cunning plans.)

        • millsy 7.3.1.2

          I doubt that Grant Robertson (not because he is gay) or David Parker would be a bit for leader anyway…

        • Chooky 7.3.1.3

          agreed…David Cunliffe is the best of the bunch…it is what is behind him that needs changing

          ….and somehow Labour needs to sort out the media

      • millsy 7.3.2

        I dont know why they are getting in Bassett to comment on Labour. He has been an ACT man for about 20 years.

        He should be looking at why ACT got only 0.7% of the vote despite promising to get rid of a RMA and shrinking the government (and extending the 90 day trial period to a year). Or why his mate Dunne got less votes than the ALCP even through it (supposedly) stuck to the centre.

    • anker 7.4

      shona 1000+

    • Delia 7.5

      We are kind of singing from the same song sheet Shona.

    • Hanswurst 7.6

      Exactly. Labour needs to clean out the neo-liberal remnants and move left. If Labour can’t win over the electorate as a left-wing party, it may as well not be there. The more right-wing commentators here keep offering “friendly advice” on how Labour can capture more votes. They don’t understand politics, merely elections, and they are not friends of the Left. It is unacceptable that a party whose membership overwhelmingly voted for a move to the left just last year, and whose affiliation is with the unions, should promote policies against the interests of that base just so that it can have symolic representation in parliament. I also shall turn my back entirely on Labour if Cunliffe is not reaffirmed as leader. In fact, if Labour moves to the right and things continue otherwise as they have over the last few years, I’m not even sure if I can be bothered maintaining my citizenship.

      • Gosman 7.6.1

        Why didn’t parties that were offering more left leaning policies do better then. Even the Greens didn’t benefit at this election.

        • Hanswurst 7.6.1.1

          I don’t think you read my comment. Do remember that you are posting on a site that aims to be the New Zealand voice of the labour movement, not “how to create a party that will get lots and lots of votes from middle New Zealand”. If conservative and centrist types want to start a new party to capture people’s imaginations, they are perfectly welcome to do so. Many posters on this site are not interested in gathering the votes of all comers at any cost. They are interested in promoting and popularising left-wing thought and policy as far as possible.

        • shona 7.6.1.2

          I’ll engage Gossie just this once,. there was a mainstream media full frontal assault on Cunliffe from day one. Ably assisted and abetted by the ABC’s( just fuck off to NAtional already) . The media spun and spun and spun. Crosby Textor would’ve earned at least some of their fees this time. Dirty politics meant just atad of real work.Garner, Hosking ( not even a journo) Henry. Openly supporters of National .Guyon found his training and occasionally did i his job even Lisa Owen had her moments. Forbes will be shafted from Native Affairs when we least expect it. The Right’s control of the media is the answer to your question. the traditional hate merchants of talk back were on form. The dribbling douche bags of radio live working for their inflated salaries on their usual high of provincial bigotry and complete lack of information any analysis and depth. National Radio is filled right wing apologists and dip sticks. Kathryn Ryan is an intellectually bereft muppet.
          The young are ignorant uninformed ( is that really their fault) and thoroughly disengaged.
          i could go on but lunch awaits and you'[re really not worth the effort.

          • greywarbler 7.6.1.2.1

            @ Shona 11.53
            Kathryn Ryan is better than your description, much better. You should leave off or you might get Jim Mora instead. Then you’ll be sorry.

      • lurgee 7.6.2

        Labour needs to clean out the neo-liberal remnants and move left.

        You really believe that 50% of the people voting voted for National because Labour were not sufficiently left-wing? If we tack left, suddenly the voters will suddenly abandon Key?

        Or do you think the ‘missing million’ will suddenly re-appear and start voting left, even though they’ve sat out the last three elections? If they’re not motivated to vote AGAISNT Key and National, it is going to be pretty hard to find anything positive they will want to vote FOR.

        35% of the voting population voted for Labour / Greens. That’s not a bad starting point. We need to pry off 10% of National’s support, which shouldn’t be too hard.

        Education is going to be a big issue. National’s going to cause some major strife with the PPTA and continue to under invest. Every parent will children in the school system is interested in this. They’ll respond to a positive vision there. Better schools. Nick off with National’s Iwi / Kiwi idea:

        National – Private Schools. Labour – Better schools.
        National – Bigger Classes. Labour – Working Classes.
        National – Sold New Zealand. Labour – Better New Zealand.

        And so on …

        • Hanswurst 7.6.2.1

          You really believe that 50% of the people voting voted for National because Labour were not sufficiently left-wing? If we tack left, suddenly the voters will suddenly abandon Key?

          Turning your argument around: Do you think that Labour would have won by being more like National? I think that’s far from a given. People are content with National doing what it does; why would they suddenly decide that it would be safer to bet on someone else doing it? That may have merit from an electoral point of view if the tide were going out on National and voters were looking for an alternative – any alternative so long as it was not National. That wasn’t the case though.

          In any case, I don’t see a single electoral victory as the holy grail that you seem to.

          What I do think is that a strong representation of the right wing of Labour on the front benches will create pressure for the party to move to the right and foment disunity if that doesn’t happen. I don’t see any useful gain in Labour’s moving to the right, since that just opens up the ground for National to move rightwards as well. There might be a Labour victory on the back of that in 2017 or 2020, but the net result would be a rightward drift over time. The last couple of decades are evidence of that.

          I would see that as a defeat, because I think Labour should be an ideological representative of the interests of workers, not a wet finger to the electoral wind.

          National – Private Schools. Labour – Better schools.
          National – Bigger Classes. Labour – Working Classes.
          National – Sold New Zealand. Labour – Better New Zealand.

          With respect, that’s really weak. Basically, you’re advocating for Labour to continue saying the same stuff as it has for the last six years, but with ineffectual slogans.

    • Melanie Scott 7.7

      Gosh! I couldn’t agree more with everything in this comment. It’s depressing, but we need to pick ourselves up. I will do so for my son and my grandchildren, currently resident overseas, but wanting to come home one day. Hope they will have something worthwhile to come home to.

      Similar probs in Oz. My son told me of an Aussie friend returning home who like him, is not looking forward to returning to a culture of anti-intellectualism and smugness.

    • Chooky 7.8

      +100 Shona

  8. Dave 8

    Point 8 is spot on. People’s political views are distributed like many things in a bell curve. By moving left we move away from the high concentration of voters and in doing so let NZ First pinch 2-3% off us. With such similar policies to the Greens and NZ First we were all fighting for the same piece of pie. Target the middle, leave the left to the Greens, then once in power push through good, strong socialist policy backed by the Greens.

    • greywarbler 8.1

      @ Dave
      See above about Labour roots, then add to it strong business and employment-rich business assistance along with R&D and a fund for investors run by the government that buys a share on good NZ businesses. And may buy them up to ensure that our successes aren’t auctioned off to offshore buyers and then we lose the benefits of our smarts. Try that for modern social democracy and take care with a social market economy.

  9. Craig Glen Eden 9

    This whole move to the right thing that David Shearer has already started to peddle is a load of nonsense. Labour’s poor showing in the election was because we did not have a decent party vote Labour campaign, it wasnt prominent in any form of communication and then when it did appear in a sash that was unreadable its content ” only a party vote for Labour will change the Government was a lie.

    Labour’s messaging was poor “Vote positive” is a slogan not a message. Cunliffe had to battle the “he’s not popular crap” and that damage was done by the ABC er’s and assisted by people like Mathew Hooten who even on election night was trying to champion David Shearer again.
    Key has had years of soft media he is in my view the Justin Bieber of politics and yup many voters level of engagement is about the same as most 14 year olds with music ie they know nothing about music but they like the sound and think Justin’ ( Key’s) image is cool. Cunliffe’s and the Labour parties understanding and use of the soft media was poor.
    The Party is not connecting with New Zealander’s our Mp’s need to be a lot more engaged in the communities they represent and seen at events like League, motor racing, Boxing, Kick boxing, car shows, MX, Music events/ Concerts. Hip hop competitions bla bla. Lastly if you dont live in an electorate that you are an MP in you cut down your visibility for everyday contact, its that everyday contact that our voter wants.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      I did road side sign waving for Clare Curran down here in Dunedin South, and each time, out of a dozen signs visible and held up by volunteers there were NONE of the Vote Positive – Cunliffe signs. Just ones of her and various red slogans.

      BTW Dunedin South lost the party vote to National by almost 2000 votes. That’s fucked. Yes, that’s right, Dunedin South.

    • karol 9.2

      I’m with you on most of what you say, but i’d go beyond this:

      League, motor racing, Boxing, Kick boxing, car shows, MX, Music events/ Concerts. Hip hop competitions bla bla.

      That’s all traditional/conventionally guys’ stuff. There is more to communities than this.

      The greens also and Labour, like Mana, need to be out at all kinds of community activities: night markets (not just during the election campaigns); netball, community centres, school events, university debates and entertainments, kapahaka competitions, Pasifika events, etc.

      And the left needs more pan-left debates, talks and entertainments – people talking to each other offline is part of the way to counter the online silo effect.

      • Craig Glen Eden 9.2.1

        I get/agree with your point Carol we need to be at all these events woman dominated paricipating events, but here’s the thing loads of woman go to these events. Woman love this stuff way more than than Labour members understand. Woman also take part in these events not just as spectators woman compete in kick boxeing, boxing,MX, Motor Racing, Car Club’s, Motor cycle clubs. In my proffessional role I am associated with these woman and their mothers. They are bright intelligent caring woman who love these activities they are not nuckle draggers as Millsy likes to frame them but rather just people Labour needs to connect with and understand.

        • karol 9.2.1.1

          Yep. Women who follow the men, or support the same activities as men, are the only women we need to know about.

          • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1.1

            Nothing like that was implied in Craig Glen Eden’s comments. Try not to discount those women karol just because these women might not fit your ideal.

          • Murray Olsen 9.2.1.1.2

            A lot of women take their kids to play league and netball. They’re not there to follow men, they’re their for their kids to take part in community activities. Helen Clark used to be seen at games now and then. Going to these events does not preclude going to others as well.

            Good suggestions, Craig. The ones Karol added are also good.
            To quote Michael Jackson: can’t we all just get along?

      • sabine 9.2.2

        funny the Labour Team out west did that. Night Market, Street Corner Meeting etc etc. I even saw met the Internet Mana guy.
        the only ones that I never met where the Greens.

        Heck I had Team Key in my shop every Saturday.

    • lurgee 9.3

      This whole move to the right thing that David Shearer has already started to peddle is a load of nonsense.

      Yes, because there are a million voters out there just waiting for a reason to vote … As if Key hadn’t provided them with enough reasons in three consecutive elections.

      There is nothing to be gained by moving left. To paraphrase a comment from a Nat MP in The Hollowmen, Act policies means ACT level of support. We can fight the far left parties for their 1.5% of the vote, or National for the 10% of the vote, that were happy to vote for Clark.

      One of those alternatives is likely to win elections and deliver a centre left government which can actually effect change and make people’s lives better.

      The other will allow you to sit on the opposition benches and bask in the comforting glow of ideological purity. And I’m sure the 3% of New Zealanders voting for you will be very, very pleased.

  10. millsy 10

    I dont think Labour should throw the poor, sick, homeless, and vulnerable under a bus to attract the knuckle dragging tradies to a National-lite Labour.

    • Tracey 10.1

      Plus bloody one brother/sister

    • Karen 10.2

      +100 Millsy

    • King Kong 10.3

      It is this kind of stupid rhetoric that is your problem.

      It also shows why you can’t trust the membership of Labour with important decisions, like who the leader should be.

    • Craig Glen Eden 10.4

      Who said they have to throw the poor under a bus what a piss poor straw man argument that is. That attitude you have shown is exactly the problem with Labour. Who say’s people who like the things that I have listed above are knuckle dragger’s , seriously who gives you the right to judge millsy. These people are Labour voters who arnt voting get it, because of self righteous bullshit like that.

      WAKE UP YOU CONDESCENDING JUDGEMENTAL HYPOCRITES IN LABOUR. You want to loose another election keep pitching the way you are. We dont have to move to the right to capture this vote, these people are our voters we just have to firstly want to connect to them and secondly connect with them.

      Three weeks ago I was at the kick boxing Jacinda Ardern came along she had never been to anything like that before she told me. She had been their for about one hour when I went and said “hey good to see you here mate” she said to me “Im guessing Craig all these people are actually potentially our voters”. I responded Yup Jacinda you have got it in one. Oh and by the way the cameras were on Jacinda for about 10 minutes it cut to the commentators who said Oh I see we have Jacinda Ardern with us nice to see the Labour MP here tonight and nice to see she has diversified interests. Boom Job done.

      Oh and good on Jacinda for coming along I just hope more people in Labour start to wake up and get off their high social class horses to actual interact with all New Zealanders and not just those people who they think are worthy to socialize with.

      • Could not agree more. But many of the tribal backward looking views expressed here come from entrenched activists whose first knee jerk response is to say ‘piss off we don’t need you’. In my opinion these views are entrenched in yesteryear. Labour went backwards in every demographic bar one, and yet we have people here advocating more of the same. Staggering!
        Cunliffe’s post election speech was also very revealing. No humility, and clearly had not heard anything the voters had to say.
        Lots of people on this site hate Pagani and Shearer ( I am not an advocate for either) but what they had to say before and after the election needs to be taken to heart by Labour.

        • millsy 10.4.1.1

          OWP,

          What policies do you want Labour to drop?

          Do you want to ban unions and roll black employement law.

          You had better answer boy – I will keep harrasing you until you do.

      • karol 10.4.2

        I’m not saying don’t focus on those events, i’m saying by listing only those kinds of events you have a very narrow focus, one that is traditionally masculine, and that excludes, particularly, a large number of women.

        And this from Marama Davidson:

        • Craig Glen Eden 10.4.2.1

          I just used those as an example Karol as I said I agree with you we have to be at female dominated events as well, hence Helen was always at the netball and always at the League. Helen got “it” she loved the League it didn’t make her a knuckle dragger and she still managed to appeal to woman voters. I also know as an example a woman who leads a woman’s fishing group they Charter a boat once a month, now Im not into fishing my self but she was/is passionate about it and so to the woman in her group. Good on her I say and she just happened to do the meanest smoked fish you ever did taste.

          • karol 10.4.2.1.1

            Clark also supported diverse kinds of cultural activities as well as sports.

          • Rob 10.4.2.1.2

            But Craig , that is the issue. How may Labour activists look down on the people at these working class pursuits as being Knuckle Draggers. Why do you have to apologize for following rugby league or motor racing.

            The continuing use of Labour, as a term to brand these packs of identity activists, who look down on the actual demographic that has supported them the most is a travesty.

            • karol 10.4.2.1.2.1

              I was not one who is labeling people who attend such pursuits as “knuckle draggers”. More that selecting only those pursuits, shows a narrow masculine bias.

              • Rob

                Wasn’t referring to you Karol, however there is no doubt some members of the “Labour” party / movement or whatever, genuinely have to hold their nose these days when having any interaction with the working class and their ‘pursuits’.

                • karol

                  Need to get out more, and not just in election year.

                  • Rob

                    Do you think some of the ‘old dogs’ can really learn new tricks, they are not going to get that by getting out more. Do you think perhaps that Labour (meaning the people in it) just does not have the real connection to working class now.

                    My point being is that if the party is made up of academics and career politicians, with very little representation from manufacturing and trades, how can there be true and credible connections.

                    • karol

                      It’s not just about backgrounds, although, I do think they need a more diverse range of backgrounds.

                      Yes, too many career politicians, and too few from low income backgrounds – the trades and manufacturing, yes, but also women from low income backgrounds. That may mean they have academic backgrounds also, and may not necessarily have worked in trades or manufacturing. (see for instance Metiria Turei, her background, and continued commitment to those in poverty).

                      Whatever, their backgrounds, they need to maintain links with diverse flax roots communities.

    • lurgee 10.6

      Who says you need to do that?

      Though by allowing National to continue to govern by preserving your prissy idea of ideological purity, you ARE pretty much throwing them under the bus.

      Letting the right win because you’re too precious to appeal to the centre is not going to help people.

  11. rich the other 11

    This article just doesn’t get it .
    Carry on in your own dream world

  12. Dave 12

    We need to look at who votes and who for. The answers are over 50’s and of them over 50 were voting national (based on poll breakdowns). We need to avoid pissing them off. Having a Capital Gains Tax policy is not entirely unpopular itself, it’s the difficulty in defending it, the potential for embarrassing moments it brings about which is the problem. The emotive arguments against it are so easy to spurt out with no need to back them up with any facts.

  13. Peter 13

    Don’t underestimate the value of charisma with voters via the media. Which politician on the left has it?

  14. J Mex 14

    I agree with some of the above (esp first part of 7).

    A couple of points: The ‘right’ are often talking about the left-wing bias of the media. The ‘left’ are often talking about the right-wing biased corporate media. IMHO, this is because every time they write something positive about ‘our side’ they obviously are just reporting reality. When they write something negative, they are being based. Thus each side finds confirmation of obvious media bias.

    An impartial observer should be able to see that the media report things in a way most likely to sell papers/get eyeballs on screens/ears on the radio. Usually that is at least mildly sensational and this will wind up one side of the activists as being incredibly biased.

    • karol 14.1

      Media bias is not just in the minds of the reader/viewer. That’s just a superficial non-analysis. The bias works in quite complicated ways and can be examined:e.g. it’s in the way headlines often misrepresent the content. It’s in the way right leaning ideals are more likely to be represented on the front pages and in headlines, while left leaning ones are more often in the inside pages, or buried at the bottom of articles. And the right leaning bias is often seen in the editorials of NZ herald at moments when it counts, and in the quick bits of editorialising at the end of news reports by the likes of Tova O’Brien and Patrick Gower.

      The right-leaning bias is not total, which is why some people will also find

      The media bias is partly in the drive for sales and advertising – ultimately that endorses the “neoliberal”, market-supporting values of individualism, consumerism, etc.

      That’s the commercial media, and is why we need a strong public service media.

      • J Mex 14.1.1

        With all due respect, a public service media might produce the type of narrative that you want to hear, but the commercial media has to (via the profit motive) produce narrative that the public want to hear.

        The posters here might feel good about hearing more stuff that fits with their world view, but the public (by in large) are not interested. They would rather watch “The Block” and listen to Radio Live/ZM than listen to Radio NZ.

        This fits into point 3 from Anthony “Only a minority engage, and we just silo ourselves into our tribes”. More public service media just makes you feel good about your silo.

        It’s basically boils down to the view that ‘the public just don’t know what is good for them’. This kind of thinking has to go. Political parties need to move to where the public already are, or they won’t be able to win. You can try to move the public to somewhere they aren’t particularly interested in going, but it is very unlikely to be successful.

        • karol 14.1.1.1

          To many false premises there, JMex. The commercial media not only produce what the public (allegedly) wants to here. They pander to drama, sensationalism and celebrity culture, and in so doing, perpetuate right wing values. They don’t foster deep critical thinking about the issues, but provide distractions and diversions. And the MSM relentless focus on The (political) Game, is just a turn-off for a lot of voters.

          True public service media would not produce only the narratives I want agree with. A true public service media would provide in-depth debate and critique from diverse perspectives. It doesn’t need for all of the public to attend to them. However, it does put those critiques and diverse views into the public domain. It provides something other than WO style spin and attack politics for the MSM to feed on. And it provides some challenges to the narrow and superficial coverage of the dominant parts of the MSM.

          • J Mex 14.1.1.1.1

            True public service media would not produce only the narratives I want agree with. A true public service media would provide in-depth debate and critique from diverse perspectives.

            But if people don’t/won’t watch it, it is pointless.

            And if there was demand for it, it would be being supplied and successful (plenty of these types of shows have fallen by the wayside for lack of mass public appeal, even though they appealed to a small constituency).

            So you can pin your hopes on a societal paradigm shift, or you can work with the world, as it exists, and try to win.

      • Tracey 14.1.2

        And that no tv stationthought snowden and greenwald deserved live or even delayed coverage. Bump the paul henry show and screen it delayed but the same channel chose to screen its kdc piece two days before the election?

        Those are deliberate editorial, placement decisions.

        • lurgee 14.1.2.1

          It’s partly because the right are better at appealing to viewers / readers. Paul Henry gets a show because of his ratings appeal – the shock jock routine, just-saying-what-people-are-thinking schtick is popular, and even when people don’t like what commentators like Henry are saying, they giggle at his audacity and hope he is going to say something outrageous.

          The left, for the number of foppish Wildean wits, can’t compete. What have we got? Chris Trotter, who never met a polysyllabic word he didn’t immediately fall in love with? We need someone who can be leftwing and funny at the same time. Jon Stewart, Jamie Oliver. Where is New Zealand’s equivalent?

    • Tracey 14.2

      If you read hollow men, dirty tricks, and wisharts book with key on the cover you will realise that many on the right saying the media is biased to the left are sources for many media stories and they pretend the press is biased so the press interest isnt so obvious.mits not a conspuracy theory it is a well funded strategic fact that the right has a premeditated campaign to capture and hokd the media framing of politics in nz.

      But you have to be prepared to have your views challenged to pop to the library to find out.

    • RedBaronCV 14.3

      The bias can be there in ‘light ” reporting too. Masses of photo’s of JK having selfies but hey other leaders could be given the same sort of “light ” reporting too but they don’t hence bias. Nor would we hear if JK walked through a shopping mall and nobody talked to him but we’d get headlines if it happened to another leader.(and Vic Uni did a count which suggested the bias was around 75:25 from memory.)

  15. Dont worry. Be happy 15

    The hard right, the rich who own 10% of NZs wealth, now owns the Government, the public service and the media.

    The various arms of enforcement (police, GCSB, SIS plus what ever aphabet soup snoops the Yanks want to set up here) are also in their pocket.

    All Blacks and other elite sporting giants (puke) endorse, txt and selfie themselves silly to back the hard right.

    Not content with that the hard right want to own the opposition. Again. Welcome back Mr Shearer. Did you bring your friends?

    • Peter 15.1

      Please, don’t state the obvious because it hurts too much!

    • Tracey 15.2

      That the Right bought Shane Jones, and he went, speaks volumes about what the left is up against.

    • Colonial Viper 15.3

      The hard right, the rich who own 10% of NZs wealth, now owns the Government, the public service and the media.

      Better to say that they own 80% of NZs financial wealth…

    • minarch 15.5

      “The various arms of enforcement (police, GCSB, SIS plus what ever aphabet soup snoops the Yanks want to set up here) are also in their pocket. ”

      +1000 to this

      I would strongly suggest anyone involved in any activism become very familiar with PGP encryption and general online/comms oppsec

      I have heard the term “sedition” used FAR to may times during this election, it makes me VERY nervous !

  16. Sanctuary 16

    The electorate has just told us all that the Greens are every bit as poisonous for any party that has pretensions to actual power as Kim Dotcom proved to be. If Labour wants to broaden it’s appeal to middle New Zealand then it needs to to be able to tell them it can smack down the Greens. Labour needs to deal with the Green cuckoo in the left’s nest first. Steal their best policies and attack them at every opportunity. Labour owes the Greens nothing. Sanctimonious Greens waste no opportunity in lecturing Labour on their own moral superiority. They are just another party fighting to steal Labour votes.

    – Voters have to understand that if they want a change of government they need to vote Labour,

    – Labour needs to be strong enough to reassure middle NZ voters that the Greens might be in government but they won’t call any of the shots. The arrogance of the Green leadership (they were practically measuring up the curtains in their new ministerial offices) to presume to dictate to Labour when 90% of the electorate rejected them and a swag of middle NZ rejected Labour because the influence the Greens might have was unbelievable.

    Labour’s first objective should be to drive the Green vote down to 5-6%, and push theirs back up to high thirties.

    • rich the other 16.1

      Brilliant post .
      green’s history , former values , democrats , mana motuhake , liberals ,new labour and perhaps others ?? .
      This lot combined may have achieved 5% under mmp which means the greens actual growth is a pitiful 5% , hardly a success story over 15 ?? years , mainstream NZ isn’t interested , and doesn’t trust them , why should labour , dump them , they cost labour votes , including mine .

    • karol 16.2

      Great – so this is a really good start to working towards a collaborative and united left – bully boy tactics.

      That’s just ugly, and not very democratic at all.

      • Sanctuary 16.2.1

        “…Great – so this is a really good start to working towards a collaborative and united left – bully boy tactics.

        That’s just ugly, and not very democratic at all…”

        First of all, collaboration is what you get by having the numbers in parliament, not by sitting around the campfire singing kumbaya. And the Greens sucked the big kumara on that front. 10% doesn’t cut it.

        The Greens may be progressive but they are not “left”. They are Green. Sweet Jesus, we’ve all had to put up with enough of their high-and-mighty supporters lecturing us on how socialism is dead, class should be left in the 20th century where it belongs, the left/right divide is old hat and the future is in a new paradigm where we unite to save the trees. There are people today saying Labour lost because it failed to come to an accord with a party 90% of the country will never vote for. Ummm, What?

        Politics is ugly. The Greens seem to think you just have to ask nicely and everyone will see the wisdom of Gaia. Well it doesn’t work that way. You have to take stuff. And “stuff” includes votes.

        Labour got shellacked. Smashed. And part of that is a lot of voters don’t want a bar of the Greens being allowed anywhere near substantial power. What real-politik lesson do you think Labour should draw from that? I take from that the need for Labour to distance themselves from the Greens, and take all their best policies and soft voters while they do.

        Not very democratic? What does that even mean? Democracy is that Labour should play nice because, you know, the Greens deserve it? Democracy is a burning desire to haz all the votes, and convincing people that you are the party to vote for. That is the essence of democracy – voter choice in a competitive marketplace of ideas where the weak are culled. Why do you think Labour shouldn’t be mean to the poor Greens? The Greens should get off their arse and get their own votes. Who knows, if they weren’t so f**king lazily convinced of their own moral superiority they might have even managed to organise a proper GOTV by now – they’ve only had twenty years to do it.

        • millsy 16.2.1.1

          IMO, the Greens need to reach out to the hunters and fishers and outdoor recreation enthusasits to increase their vote. They may like to kill “innocent animal” for sport, but reading the letters to the editor in various fishing magazines, there seems to be a lot of support for “Green” approaches to natural resource management.

          You cannot fish for trout in rivers full of toxic waste, and having that wild pork is not a good idea if the meat is toxic with tainted chemicals.

          • Chooky 16.2.1.1.1

            @millsy …agreed …but where they disagree with the Greens is on 1080

            …the Greens MUST listen to these people….they know their land, animals, birds, waterways, bushlands , mountain lands and conservation estate intimately…as do many farmers who also oppose 1080 plastering and want to bring back the old state funded rabbit boards

            …the Greens must review their support for this poison…NZ takes 80% of the world supply and it is plastered over this country…(although 1080 is made in the USA by a family company ….it is used very sparingly indeed in the USA…in fact in conservationist Oregon it has completely been banned for years)..

    • King Kong 16.3

      I don’t wish to point out just how sage I am but here is a comment of mine from 18 months ago advocating this exact thing Genius

    • BM 16.4

      I agree.

      Everyone goes on about purging the right from the labour party, when in reality it’s all the closet greenies within labour that are doing all the damage.

      It’s fairly obvious to me there are elements within labour trying to remold labour into the greens.
      If labour is to survive you’ve got to get rid of these people, they’re your enemies not the more right leaning elements of the labour party.
      They’re your ticket to the central rump of voters.

      • millsy 16.4.1

        Can you provide me a list of what environmental laws you wish to see rolled back.

        Do you think that it is OK to choke our rivers with toxic waste?

        • BM 16.4.1.1

          Yes I do, I want the rivers so toxic if you dip your toe in the water your flesh will dissolve.

          • millsy 16.4.1.1.1

            Exhibit A folks.

            • Colonial Viper 16.4.1.1.1.1

              BM will set a water standard where it takes at least an hour of toe dipping to strip the flesh to the bone. It will be a “balanced” policy.

              • minarch

                “BM will set a water standard where it takes at least an hour of toe dipping to strip the flesh to the bone. It will be a “balanced” policy.”

                but there may be an entry fee of course..

            • Tracey 16.4.1.1.1.2

              King kong and bm, from what i read over tge past years suggest for labour to win, they really need policies like… National.

              I have asked BM to be specific abourpt policies he thinks would make Labour more palatable… He struggles a bit

              • millsy

                “I have asked BM to be specific abourpt policies he thinks would make Labour more palatable… He struggles a bit”

                They all seem to. From Pagani down.

          • shona 16.4.1.1.2

            why? what useful purpose for any member
            of humanity would that serve? come on you halfwit Tell us why that would be beneficial? we’d love to know

      • Tracey 16.4.2

        By survive, do you mean more like national, or something else? Be specific.

      • rich the other 16.4.3

        Exactly ,BM
        I still can’t believe parker standing alongside the greens announcing policy and the continual rhetoric in parliament ” our good friends the greens ” , he hasn’t got a clue .
        A move closer to the greens will ensure Key wins again in 2017 .

        • Murray Olsen 16.4.3.1

          As far as Parker goes, the Greens would be much better friends than his mate Milton. Labour need to get their own act together, not attack potential allies.

    • shona 16.5

      i cannot believe myself ,i agree wholeheartedly with you Sanctuary. I was a green voter for many years voted for the Values party in 1975. I have been a dedicated greenie all my life . Was planting trees and conserving forest before the Conservation Dept even existed. But agree with everything you say,dammit. The arrogance yes that is what resonates with me. anyhow gotta go an look at my new possum plucking machine see if it works ok.

  17. miravox 17

    point 11 – Cunliffe would have needed to be a record breaker to win this election after being in the job for only 12 months.

    Key holds the record at 2 years doesn’t he?

    I came to terms with a National win months ago. i do belive polls are generally indicative, i believe most people make up their minds months out from an election – not days or weeks, so party in-fighting even now can impact on the chances of winning the next election if it drags on.

    I’m distressed by the slide into dirty politics and feel that how to recognise, use or combat dirty tactics is much more important than negative analysis of people who did their jobs well in an election they were never going to win

    On another, possibly related point, i’m concerned at the rise in career politicians rather than conviction politicians. I think all parties should be doing a bit of soul-searching about this trend. Particularly those on the left, where careerists are less likely tho match the profiles of their potential constituents.

  18. risildowgtn 18

    Labour need to clean out the oldies,

    Goff. Mallard King , ABC club.. theyre still undermining Cunliffe and until theyre removed will continue to do so

    Cunliffe – u now have 3 years to get your shit together. Get some media training and stop tryin to be Key. Get your policies done and learn them.

    Ffs Labour Get out on the Street .

    Dont think doing gorgeous exclusive pay to see coffee evenings endeared you to the poor in Otaki

    PS; it isnt bout FPP. ITS MMP learn how to work that to your advantage… Tories have and thats how they win.. dont even go there re principles. I havent seen much of any evidence of that> Davis vs Hone= DISGUSTED……

    my pov

  19. BenM 19

    Can’t entirety agree with point 8. While Labour’s busy trying to capture the centre, National’s propaganda machine will be pushing the centre further and further to the right, and we’ll just end up with two right-wing parties contesting the new ‘centre’. We need to be spending the next two years fighting both the propaganda and the machine itself. This will give us a year to regroup and make a play for the centre, which hopefully won’t be so far to the right.

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      While Labour’s busy trying to capture the centre, National’s propaganda machine will be pushing the centre further and further to the right

      This.

  20. Ovid 20

    I don’t know about everyone else, but I’m still licking my wounds. I need more data to point where we failed. There’s a post-election study produced by Victoria University that may help and if Labour has the money, maybe some polling would be useful too.

    I’m quite shocked by Cunliffe trying to secure his position by Christmas. I voted for him to be leader thinking that debate performance would be the most important thing. To his credit, he did perform well there, but clearly that didn’t matter. I need time to process this loss and I think the membership does too. We’re back to square one and there’s a danger of a party-wide siege mentality setting in rather than making the changes that we need to appeal to the wider electorate.

    NB: I have changed my handle – there were too many Petes here.

    • Colonial Viper 20.1

      Party constitution says that a caucus confidence vote must be held within 3 months of the election date, and failing to get 60% confidence, it will go to a leadership primary.

      So DC’s timetable although slightly accelerated, is not hugely so. He wants Labour to start the new year with Leadership soundly in place, and I do too.

      • Ovid 20.1.1

        He says in his email to members:

        … I will be seeking a new mandate from the party, the affiliates and the caucus by the end of the year

        So he’s trying to avoid the embarrassment of a possibly unsuccessful confidence vote by going straight to the wider party. I want to see how much support he has in caucus. That will factor into my decision.

        • Tracey 20.1.1.1

          This caucus apears very self serving.. I am not an insider so am only going by comments i have read.

          Ovid suits you.

          • Delia 20.1.1.1.1

            Well I heard on radio this morning that going into that leadership vote last October David Cunliffe had a third of caucus support!! Mike Williams said this time they may tell the membership and unions exactly what caucus support each candidate has.

          • Jenny Kirk 20.1.1.1.2

            Yep – Tracy – you are spot on. Most of the Labour caucus is self-serving, and they do not really care about what they’re doing except getting rid of Cunliffe. They sicken me. They sickened me when they were kow-towing to Roger Douglas, and they’re still kow-towing to those same policies. They are the ones Labour needs to be rid of, not Cunliffe.

            • Tracey 20.1.1.1.2.1

              Agree. They need to go and join the party they want labour to be, be that Nats, UF! ACT or NZF?

            • greywarbler 20.1.1.1.2.2

              How many now in Labour or following the left, though not completely with the Greens policies, would follow a new party if it was formed?

              It seems helpful for making a judgment of Labour’s status today, to look at the Labour Party using a business tool devised in the 1970s which ascribes status for investment interest. The investments are matched to a grid of four descriptions. The low value two are the cash cow and the dog, which is the lowest. The two in the upper level are the shining star and the question mark. http://www.netmba.com/strategy/matrix/bcg/

              I think that Labour is already the dog but the incumbents are trying to keep it to the cash cow level. So the next level is the question mark with the hope of becoming a shining star.

              Could there be enough energy and commitment to build a new Party and leave behind this present Labour circling and fouling its own patch and digging a deep rut for its followers? What would a new Party call itself?

    • GregJ 20.2

      Nice choice Ovid!

      Were you thinking something along the lines of:

      Ardua molimur; sed nulla nisi ardua virtus

      • Ovid 20.2.1

        I wish I could say I was – it’s a very good quote (I attempt a difficult work; but there is no excellence without difficulty). I’m just a fan of classical myth.

  21. Observer (Tokoroa) 21

    Hi Anthony
    Lesson 1

    “The left made its share of mistakes in this election, largely (as usual) fighting amongst ourselves. We need to work together…”

    From today the Left should be shouting out the standout fact of this Election 2014. That killer fact is that National got 61 seats in Parliament; the Left got 56 seats.
    Ref: Electoral Commission 21/9/2014.

    National 48% 61 seats
    Labour 25% 32 seats
    Green 10% 13 seats
    NZ First 9% 11 seats

    61 seats V 56

    This means that National will be governing with a handy 5 seat majority. Hardly a landslide though, is it?

    The Left always with a friendly smile, should get off their over-shy, wimpy, politically correct demeanour.

    They should constantly call the Nats for the unfair, uneconomic, dishonest ragtails they have become.

    The Left are in a strong and noble position to win the next election.

    But only if they do not fight among themselves.
    They should proudly support each other’s perspectives and platforms.

    Avoid painful policy such as CGT, and raising the age of Retirement. (Replace it with a modest tax on high Assets – possibly).

    The Left have survived well, given the disgraceful bias of NZ Media and the constant free promotion of the Parties of Greed (Nats,Act). Despite too, its sickly slavery to all things Conservative. The NZ Media delights in going backwards. Strange behaviour.

    The Left have done well. Very well in the age of one sided Dirty Politics.

    • Colonial Viper 21.1

      The Left always with a friendly smile, should get off their over-shy, wimpy, politically correct demeanour.

      BOOOOM. Being seen as gutless and apologising at every turn hurt Labour. Yet another example of the cultural mismatch with Kiwis. Notice when Key was caught out with shit – he didn’t apologise at all. No camera based mea culpas. National gets it.

      • Murray Olsen 21.1.1

        WIth the proviso that those who refuse to apologise and keep doing the same rubbish fall harder in the end. The mood of the nation changes slowly, but when it does……..

    • Pasupial 21.2

      Observer

      There’s always a chance that after specials are counted it’ll be (some combination of preliminary numbers and):

      National – 60 seats
      Labour – 33 seats
      Green – 14 seats
      NZF – 10 seats

      The overseas votes have traditionally favoured the left, and NZF policies probably look less attractive from abroad. The official count starts tomorrow. Anyone who has access to a candidate can get their name signed-on as a scutineer. So as to make sure that the numbers being counted match the ones communicated to the Electoral Commission (and that there’s no bias in those votes determined to be invalid).

      I agree that it would be a good idea to: “Avoid painful policy such as CGT, and raising the age of Retirement”. At least until after 2017 election. When a Labour/ Green has been in government for a year, and made on cleaning up the festering mess that NACT will leave behind, then that will be the time to start a public conversation on such issues.

      But you’re spot on with this:

      They should constantly call the Nats for the unfair, uneconomic, dishonest ragtails they have become.

      The Left are in a strong and noble position to win the next election.

      But only if they do not fight among themselves.
      They should proudly support each other’s perspectives and platforms.

    • Tracey 21.3

      Its only five if you consider winston is a left leaning politician… But i agree landslide was a huge over statement

    • Rob 21.4

      “The Left always with a friendly smile, should get off their over-shy, wimpy, politically correct demeanour.”

      I know what you mean, they should have of had massed alcohol inflamed ralies where students shout out “f*ck John Key” and where they burn images of him and also we should have got local talent groups to write songs about killing him and having s$x with his daughter. Yeah should have done lost more that, that would really work. Oh….wait…..

      • millsy 21.4.1

        But you call for trade unionists and gays to be strung up with piano wire and those on benefits to be thrown on the streets?

        • Rob 21.4.1.1

          Millsy, again more bullshit, who is calling for that exactly, or you just so used to repeating that sort of shit.

          • millsy 21.4.1.1.1

            Well you have more or less implied getting rid of trade unions because you think they are evil for some reason, and Americanising our health system.

            • Rob 21.4.1.1.1.1

              Millsy, you may have the wrong Rob , certainly I have never supported the health industry Americanization. Literally many of my friends are employed in health in this country.

              However I will be honest, my dealings with manufacturing unions, when I was employed in industrial laboratories doing R&D for chemical companies during the 80’s was less than impressive.

              • millsy

                So you want to ban unions and ban collective bargaining.

                You do realised that mean that wages will be slashed to $2 per hour.

                Do you want to get rid of sick leave.

                You do realised that in the 1980’s there was no child poverty, and that was becasue unions ensured that wages were high.

                • higherstandard

                  My God the demented ‘end of the worlders’ on this site just get worse and worse…. i’m out of here until after the next election.

                • Rob

                  millsy , I dont want to ban unions, when I have I ever said that. You need to get a grip.

                  Millsy, you do realise that if you applied that same calculation based on % of earnings that calculates the 250K of child poverty that is here today then you would have a similar ratio of child poverty in the 80’s.

                  That is the issue in using an “almost” standard deviation approach to earning distribution and then labeling a lower segment of it as a child poverty zone.

  22. Ant 22

    One massive issue is that Key and National wrote up some stacked rules to their own game and Labour followed those rules: Defining Labour’s relationship to potential allies on the left, defining Labour’s policies by making Labour adhere to their own concept of “fiscal responsibility”, defining how Labour present policy and follow unrealistic standards of detail due to “show me the money”.

    When Labour is front footing it they do well, when Labour is following National’s playbook they do badly. Getting around how Key is allowed to frame Labour will be tough, but fixing appearances of disunity in caucus and between the left parties is a good start.

  23. Doug Stuart 23

    When you fake a e-mail you should get the date right first, Americans put the month before the day :ie 9 11 The fake i mail from Dotcom had the day first, this is not an e-mail between two Americans but a fake generated in nz.

    [lprent: Tired of explaining this to people who are technically idiots like you. Many mail programs adapt. American companies have people from all over the world working for them. Most of the world uses DMY. So do many international companies. Your proof has about as much validity as your ability to type. Pretty damn pathetic. ]

    • Gosman 23.1

      You will at least accept lprent that the evidence that John Key knew about KDC prior to when he has stated he knew about him was a bit of a fizzer and essentially backfired on IMP won’t you lprent?

    • Doug Stuart 23.2

      why is the e-mail address wrong as well ?

    • millsy 23.3

      The email has now been referred to the appropriate authorities where these allegations will be fully investigated, as to their authenticity.

      Dotcoms bomb may turn out to be more of delayed action device. Set to go off when we least expect it.

      • J Mex 23.3.1

        This, I never understood:

        – KimdotCom hated/really really dislikes John Key
        – He wanted John Key Taken down before/at the election
        – He had an email that showed Key Lied
        – He did not produce the email on the night he said he would (the whole event was organised around this)
        – The email was referred to the privileges committee with no hope of being assessed before the election.

        These are not consistent, and make no sense. They point to the email being a fake (and known to be fake).

        The only people who argue that the email is not very likely to be a fake are the people who really really wish it was true

        • karol 23.3.1.1

          Russell Brown’s interview of Glenn Greenwald last week, explains a bit of what happened re-the KDC email:

          RB: A final question: you dissociated yourself from Kim Dotcom’s Warner email at the press conference last night. Did you go so far as to veto it being presented on the night?

          GG: No, I wouldn’t say I vetoed it. I didn’t really have the power to veto what he wanted to do or say. But we did talk about the fact that in the scheme of what we might talk about, that the time would probably be used a lot more constructively to focus on the questions of mass surveillance and the truthfulness of the Prime Minister, and the trade agreement that Mr Amsterdam spent quite some time talking about, as opposed to the particulars of Mr Dotcom’s case. That it would probably be a better use of the time of the event. I think we came to a consensus about it and I felt very comfortable with that.

          • J Mex 23.3.1.1.1

            That could explain why it wasn’t used at the event.

            But what was to stop KimDotCom bringing it up the next day, and every day after that?

            Why do the one thing with it that guaranteed it would disappear until after the election?

            When all your energy (and money) is going in to taking Key down before, or at, the election, it make zero sense to essentially shelve it? Unless – it can’t be verified/is false.

            I’m prepared to have a charitable bet on this if anyone wants. Kimdotcom will drop this email business. Any takers?

            • karol 23.3.1.1.1.1

              he did release it to the media, and did mention it the next day – saying he stood by it. It seems, by that time he may have decided he was a distraction from the main election issues.

              I have no idea whether the email is fake or not. However, given KDC’s IT background and connections, and his enlistment of some highly qualified lawyers, I would have thought he would have had the email well and truly vetted prior to releasing it. ie. I think it would pass an initial sniff test, but may (or may not) be discredited after a more prolonged and intensive investigation.

              • Lanthanide

                “I would have thought he would have had the email well and truly vetted prior to releasing it. ie. I think it would pass an initial sniff test, but may (or may not) be discredited after a more prolonged and intensive investigation.”

                Yes, so he should have provided that evidence as well. The fact that he didn’t, apparently under legal advice, doesn’t magically mean we somehow must believe him.

            • sabine 23.3.1.1.1.2

              something that people might have a hard time understanding about germans.

              we have a history of state surveillance that was all encompassing.

              1. Gestapo
              2. Stasi

              now .com is to young for the Gestapo in the third Reich and its aftermath, but he would have been of age to see the vastness of the Stasi Programm. Literally all east Germans were ‘informal agents’ that would spy on their neighbourgs, work mates, class mates and even family member.

              Often people were pressed into service by threads, blackmail etc.

              What would have created outrage and cries resignation of the cabinet/chancellor/high ranking officials and/or calls for early election in germany did nothing in NZ.
              In NZ (i was just told so by someone on FB…:) People now how to do Database Management and because of that they know that there are not enough people to read these emails. 🙂 so you see nothing to see here. Also, if you have nothing to hide why would you be bothered having all your communications collected and stored till kingdom come?

              if anyone is interested in this bit of german history go here

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Commissioner_for_the_Stasi_Records
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Commissioner_for_the_Stasi_Records

              all the files were laid open so that citizens could see for themselves if they were part of the spied upon.

              .com overestimated the kiwis. they don’t care.

              frogs, slowly simmering in hot water.

              • Murray Olsen

                That makes a lot of sense. I hadn’t actually thought about how his German upbringing would have affected his thinking. I should have.

        • Lanthanide 23.3.1.2

          He was advised not to talk about it by his legal team because it is going to be used as evidence at his extradition trial.

          But that doesn’t change the equation much, because he had previously always been saying he would release the evidence at his extradition trial. Then suddenly he was going to do it 5 days before the election, even though his trial is now scheduled for February next year?

          • karol 23.3.1.2.1

            I understood he decided to release it before the election after his trial was delayed.

            • Lanthanide 23.3.1.2.1.1

              Yes, but he ended up in a stupid position where he massively over-promised and then under-delivered.

              He should have sought legal advice before he set the date for the 15th of September.

        • small thing 23.3.1.3

          Apart from the email there is the serious position that we are being force to accommodate the US in continuing to be involved in five eyes our fishing industry is fucked our land is corporately owned our sovereignty is a joke at least Scotland voted on its future we cant even do that without Key running to his overseas masters have you ever seen or heard in the history of this country a PM who has to go overseas as much as Key maybe its because even he has to escape from being recorded by the NSA
          to ensure none of his bullshit can be verified

    • Doug Stuart 23.4

      Yes e-mails out of the states adapt, not private e-mails between two hollywood executives internal to the states. Yes most of the world uses DMY, not America

      • millsy 23.4.1

        How do you know it wasnt forwarded/hacked.

      • Lanthanide 23.4.2

        You can download an email into a file format and then import it into an email client.

        The original email itself would not be changed (ie, it hasn’t been forwarded to anyone), but the email client would apply its own localisation settings (spelling, time/date format, timezone etc) to the display of the email, without actually changing the email content.

        • Doug Stuart 23.4.2.1

          [deleted]

          [lprent: You appear to be astroturfing, and I have already warned you. 4 week ban for being a astroturfing dumbarse. Indeed. Watch this space because you can’t write here. ]

  24. swordfish 24

    (2) “The right’s dirty politics works, and the public don’t (yet) believe it…”

    (5) “In the madness of last month, the public believed everything Key told them.”

    Bring together the Colmar Brunton questions that directly concern Key’s involvement in the Dirty Politics scandal with the Fairfax-Ipsos question on whether his reputation has been damaged and you’ll find that, in each case, a plurality took a negative view towards Key.

    41% agreed smear campaigns were organised in the PM’s Office (with another 24% Unsure), 44% refused to believe Key’s version of the SIS OIA release (another 14% Unsure), and 47% agreed that his reputation had taken a hit (with another 11% Unsure).

  25. vto 25

    Is this a lesson too? ….

    My preferences went left because imo their policies will lead to a better society, as it has done in the past.

    However, my circumstances are such that right policies are in my favour, due to business and making coin…

    should I complain then? Do I take arms against a sea of struggles or suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune? Do we act solely in our individual interests? Or do we act in the interests of the wider group?

    what is the lesson?

    • Tracey 25.1

      I am in your position. My personal circumstances will probably see me financially benefit from a nat led govt. However money is not what drives my decisions or outlook in life.

      We decided for weeks ago to sell our home, get rid of our mortgage and move from central auckland. Bigger commute for my partner but quiter life and no mortgage. We decided this because we both are concerned that in two years time the econony may take a sharp dip and we dont trust that another economic colapse is not round the corner.

      We also want to do things now rather than wait til retired etc etc…

      Our combined household income is about $110k per annum.

      I recognise that we are able to make these kinds of decisions but most kiwis are stuck where they are at the mercy of the econony and the policies that impact it.

      I want to leave behind a nation where people cared about each other and everyone could thrive not just survive.

      It is wrong that someone born, or later becomes, unable to work gets subsistence suport from our society. A very limited life indeed where a necessity feels like a luxury.

      • minarch 25.1.1

        the /upper middle classes havent figured out that they are next in the crosshairs

        and they aren’t suited for the rigors of poverty due to lack of experience

        its going to get nasty and its going to happen quickly, you made a smart move getting ready Tracey

      • karol 25.1.2

        Interesting. I am torn between finding a unit to rent closer to central Auckland, and moving a bit further out. At the moment, shorter traveling times, and being closer to things happening in the CBD is winning for me. I also ponder that the culture in the areas further out can be pretty conservative.

        Also, I have nothing to lose but maybe cheaper rent if there is a financial collapse.

        However, cheaper rentals further out, and more space may still win out in the end.

  26. Adrian 26

    Labour, Green, NZ1 got exactly the same number of seats as last time Nats only got 2 more seats because it was from 95% ( because Cons and Mana dropped out).
    Not a Rout not even a resounding win. Tell everybody that, because the MSM bullshit becomes fact.
    Numbers, Lab. Gr, Nz got 7000 more votes than 2011 ( adjusted for specials ).
    Nats got 70,000 more.
    That’s 77,000 more than 2011.
    Because of Judith Collins deliberate criminal negligence only 20,000 added to rolls out of almost 200,000 extra eligible voters 2011-2014.
    On David Cunliffe, just imagine how absolutely viserated Shearer or robertson would have been by the MSM and WO arseholes, they would have been cut to pieces by them. Cunliffe did exceptionally well.

    • Roger Calnan 26.1

      It was Labour’s worst performance since before World War One. It was the biggest winning percentage for any party since 1972.

      You are forgetting that Labour won the extra Maori seats, but their party vote decreased – which makes the comment about them winning the same number of seats a misrepresentation.

      If the best result in the last 42 years is not a big victory for National, then nothing ever will be.

      On top of that the percentage of enrolled voters who voted in the election increased over 2011 (after the specials have been taken into account).

      • Lanthanide 26.1.1

        “You are forgetting that Labour won the extra Maori seats, but their party vote decreased – which makes the comment about them winning the same number of seats a misrepresentation.”

        No, because the electorate seats come out of the total number of seats they won via the party vote, not added to it.

        It is only small parties such as UF and MP in 2011 who win more electorate seats than their PV entitles them to that are in the position you’re saying. They lead to overhang seats (as we now have 121 this year, thanks to Dunne).

    • George Hendry 26.2

      Cheers Adrian – some more of the facts I’m looking for.

    • karol 26.3

      Greens also got more votes than 2011.

  27. Tautoko Viper 27

    Groundhog Day!

    I think that overall Labour had good policies and the best leader available. David Cunliffe did not have much time to make an impact on the public. The Dong Liu affair was an absolute disgrace and the Herald has not made an effort to repair the damage. In fact the Herald has been a disgrace and I hope that an analysis is done on the media bias over the last year.

    My solution
    David Shearer needs to form a new centre party, taking the ABCs with him. This can appeal to the Pagani model. The name Labour will not suit the party.

    Labour (Left) will stick to the traditional values and be more the home for the Activists interested in Social Justice, the environment and Sustainability and what is best for NZ. This party will form an Alliance with the Greens.

  28. Del Griffith 28

    Deborah Mahuta coyle-labour don’t understand New Zealand any more.
    Mr Hammer meet mr Nail, feel free to bang him on the head.
    Mickey Savage, next time you’re having coffee with Dave and he asks what left wing policies hurt, him mention the man ban, the right to innocence and getting the unions to back his bid for leadership. Also CGT on mum and dads home? How many kiwis see that house as a retirement nest egg?
    You’ll be doing him a huge favour.

    • millsy 28.1

      WHY THE FUCK DO YOU HATE UNIONS?

      I am over people like you who constantly complain about how evil unions are and how you want to ban them and jail trade unions members and have people working for 2 dollars an hour with no sick leave.

      You are an enemy of anything that is good and decent in this country.

    • Jenny Kirk 28.2

      Hey Del Griffith – there is NO CGT on mum and dad’s home – that was stated over and over again. And what do you mean by “the right to innocence” ? ? That’s a weird comment.

      • Del Griffith 28.2.1

        Yes yes, I want to hate unions, ban unions , jail the members and having people working for $2 an hour and I am the enemy of everything that is good and decent in this country. Hyperbole much?

        The uk labour party has moved away from the unions while Cunliffe embraced them, my time Australia working with unions was a very negative experience, punishing management and therefore us workers for things that were happening in another state that had nothing to do with us.
        What is the current statistic for union membership in NZ 25% of the workforce? I don’t see people working for $2 an hour with no sick leave even though very people sign up to a union anymore.

        Jenny Kirk, Rape suspects were to be guilty till proven innocent according to Labour. They also floated the idea of cut on your parents home when they die and you inherit it. two very silly ideas. Cunliffe flip flopped on the second idea somewhat understandably but the damage was done.

        Mahuta Coyle is right and the first two responses back her up in a round about way. National has pushed leftwards and forced Labours to pick up these sort of fruitcakes as supporters and middle NZ doesn’t want a bar of them. I see a fourth term if this continues.

        Now will the moderator have the integrity to let this be posted?

        [lprent: We dump the pig ignorant inarticulate trolls and the people who merely parrot lines. They don’t add anything to the debate. The merely misguided but articulate are welcome to deal with / argue with the other commenters. Just make sure you don’t start large diversions from the topic unless you are in OpenMike. ]

        • Tracey 28.2.1.1

          of course it will be posted it helps show you for a fool.

          labour was NOT going to make anyone guilty til proven innocent that was a lie. the policy is very clear but perhaps you never read it

        • millsy 28.2.1.2

          But you want to make it harder for unions to organise and bargain collectively.

          And guess what made. We need a CGT to fund schools and hospitals.

  29. logie97 29

    Perhaps The Left needs to address why it devours itself.
    Political egos like that of Kelvin Davis (a shoo-in on the party list) attacked Hone Harawira and with it a true voice on the left was lost in the House. For what gain?
    Did Labour gain any party votes because of Davis’ stance.
    (It surely pleased people on the right – but they are generally not on the Maori role.)

  30. Jeremy Goldberg. 30

    I dont think it was anything other than dirty politics became almost revelation fatigue .So when Dotcom revealed his reveal was like “oh your full of shit”kind of reaction .Cunliffe has actually done a pretty good job hes not perfect but gave a really good account of himself in the debates in particular.I didn’t think the TV ads of Labour were any good at all, too short ,maybe cause of the cost and not enough funding.

    The economy(and all Nationals one trick pony smokescreen about it) is going to get worse all the deluded voters that love John Key will be in for a rude awakening.

    I also don’t think Grant Robertson for Labour will ever be the answer.

    Shearer stutters and appears lacking in confidence will that ever change?.Its not about who a voter trusts , its about how you sell yourself, thats all key uses, sales techniques, but the economy and its glow is going to fade fast .

    I think this election was like a Nimby swing(NZrs many of them think they are progressive or lateral thinkers they arent ) but they will start moaning once the economys wheels ,really come off.

  31. Mike 31

    The problem is you are still living in denial. You still refuse to acknowledge that you are WRONG but instead blame everything else under the sun for the loss.

  32. millsy 32

    I note that ACT, despite standing for smaller government, and a rollback of labour and environmental law only got 0.7%

    • Tracey 32.1

      Yup, and they wil get

      Dismantling of rma to favour developers
      More charter schools, and i suspect
      Lowering of the company tax rate…

      20,000 voters party voted ACT.

      Any calls by msm of tail wagging the dog?!?

      • Re the RMA. That developers comment is a smoke screen that hides the truth. It is home owners who are being more penalised by the RMA than developers, although it undoubtedly hurts them as well. An example might suffice. A development I know really well was delayed by council staff for 18 months for no good reason. No restrictions were put on the development which was on fully zoned land (that bit is important). The application was fully compliant in every respect. At the time of application development levies were $15k per section. By shifting the application from one fiscal period to another council was able to increase its development levy to $33k per lot and also cause $500k to be added to holding costs. Who do you think ends up paying this? In this case $1.4m unplanned costs were added to the development for no good reason. This added about $14k per lot (before you factor in GST). Everyone is banging on about affordable housing, but not many people know how much councils needlessly contribute to housing costs.
        Just as a footnote I am totally in favour of an RMA, but this one has been hijacked by unresponsive bureaucrats, and that definitely needs to change.

        • millsy 32.1.1.1

          *sign*

          Development levies pay for things like parks and libaries.

          You go on about being Labour, etc, but you think like a right winger.

          Why dont you just vote for National? Because thats where your politics are.

          You hate anything publicly and collectively owned. Whether it be schools, hospitals, and power companies. Plus you want unions outlawed. Tell you, Do you think union leaders should be jailed, or just fined?

          • Once was Pete 32.1.1.1.1

            Yes, of course they pay for parks. But an increase of $18k per section from one fiscal period to another when everyone is hurting is just crazy. Are you happy about that sort of cost being lumped on to sections willy nilly without control? That is the essence of the comment I am making.
            As it stands council officers can avoid their statutory obligations to process applications within a specific time period by making frivolous requests and putting the file into suspension. There is no control over this.
            You can’t have it both ways- wanting cheaper housing, but not being prepared to actually make it cheaper. If $15k per lot was deemed adequate reserve contribution by council in one year how is it appropriate to more than double it for the next year?
            A simple way of fixing this would be to fix the fee to the amount at the time of application.
            You really are deluded. I have made no comments about wanting unions outlawed. Nor have I ever discussed private/ public ownership. You really are a dipstick, but keep it up labour needs thinking like yours (not).

            • millsy 32.1.1.1.1.1

              You just dont want councils to have the means to pay for parks and you want developers to just keep all the money for themselves.

              Plus you have repeatedly slagged off unions — that means you will not have any objections if John Key starts throwing union leaders in jail — thanks to his Chinese benefactors — who are used to ringing up the local barracks when their workers go on strike.

              You bitch about Dotcom, but you forget that National have plenty of wealthy Chinese and Indian backers, who come from a country that dont have the same approach to labour laws we do.

            • Tracey 32.1.1.1.1.2

              council decisions are driven by their legal dept via their insurer. they stopped viewing the building act as a performance based code years ago.

              agree they need to return to the code but that wont happen until riskpool stops running councils

        • Tracey 32.1.1.2

          how many developers facediability for leaky homes compared to builders?

          why did national make builders and designers personally liable for te n years but not developers.

          if you think opening up greenspace and lowering bc fees and loosening rma will result in quality buildings you are ignoring history.

          developers wont pass on bc fee savings to owners in a high demand property market. history tells us they take profits by squeezing the trades… cutting some corners and closing their companies to escape liability.

          personal liability on developers would see the cowboys gone.zing the trades

  33. Ad 33

    Colonial Viper: what was the difference between the 2011 and 2014 candidate vote in South Dunedin?

    And what is the tracking like before that?

    • ScottGN 33.1

      2011 and 2014 results were pretty much the same for both candidate and party votes in Dunedin South.

  34. Used to be a socialist 34

    Picture this: 2013, Key with an eye on 2017 and 2020 tell his deadwood like Henare, Heatly and others there is no future for them, so they go quietly. Bringing in new people so by 2014 2017 and 2020 there is new talent and blood. 2013 Labour’s deadwood, Mallard etc hang on like there is no tomorrow and there is no tomorrow for them or Labour if you don’t cut out the deadwood and keep on using tactics that have failed.

    • Hanswurst 34.1

      While I agree in principle, it’s a lot harder to “cut out the dead wood” if it is largely on the front bench of your approx. 30 MPs than if you have 60 MPs wandering around your caucus. It still needs to be done, but it needs to be handled very deftly.

  35. Enough is Enough 35

    r0b

    Thanks for that. A brilliant frank assessment of this depressing defeat.

    For my 2 cents worth I think it was a failure of leadership. National will never have to be fighting so many fires ever again. They would have learned from this. It was as Micky Savage declared 2 weeks ago, a train wreck of a campaign for them.

    Labour with the current leadership could not capitalise on this. They in fact went backwards as the campaign went on.

    Labour policy was good

    We are told the membership was strong and local campaigns were energetic.

    Labour needs to find a leader that will appeal to 200,000 working kiwi’s who are struggling but currently vote for Key.

    Cunliffe failed to do that.

    • karol 35.1

      Cunliffe was not in the job long enough. And the ABCs want to go back to starting the electoral cycle with another weak ABC leader….. and then who will it be replacing him/her too late into the election cycle.

      And, now it becomes clear Cunliife never got the productive support of the caucus that he need to follow with the ideas/ideals he expressed in getting elected to the leadership.

      He needs the full and active support of his caucus for his strengths to come fully to the fore. The ABCers need to look to themselves. They are serving only themselves, not the country.

      Let Cunliife get on with what he started and what the membership voted for.

      And as for cutting lose the very people that a Labour party should be supporting, the least well off, the strugglers and the people needing the most support….? … until that never-to-be-reached time when they can slip a few crumbs into policies to support them.

      Words fail me.

      • Enough is Enough 35.1.1

        Who is advocating cutting anyone loose.

        • karol 35.1.1.1

          It’s in r0b’s post:

          Elections are won by those who show up (middle class, not young), so it is no wonder that most policy caters to that group.

          The idea r0b is advocating is pander to the middle class to get elected, then do something for the least well off.

          But by playing to the middle classes to start with, they never will be able to do anything much for the least well off…. that’s what Clark did – a holding pattern – and then, back came National moving the country even more viciously rightwards.

          The third way approach is no longer viable. We need a strong and truly left wing direction from the start, or we may as well not bother.

          And it is cutting the least well off loose. It’s shutting out their voice, and saying we middle classes know what’s best for you.

          If this is where Labour is going, then already I will be choosing between Mana (if it cuts loose from the misdirection of IMP) or the Greens.

          • Tautoko Viper 35.1.1.1.1

            +1 Karol.
            A more central Labour party will have even less appeal to non-voters. I will not support a National-lite party that dilutes its social justice policy or compromises the environment.

          • Enough is Enough 35.1.1.1.2

            Its a numbers game though Karol as we found out in spectacular fashion on Saturday night.

            As I said, I don’t think Labour lost on policy, and consequently it does not need to lunge to the right. I think we lost on leadership. People are not only voting for the policy direction. They are voting for the person who they think is best qualified to lead.

            If we accept Labour had good policy then there is only one conclusion…

            .

            • karol 35.1.1.1.2.1

              What part of, Cunliffe wasn’t leader long enough, did you not understand?

              And it has not helped that the caucus clearly never really got behind him.

              But worse, the return of the ABCs just means more faction infighting – it will not end well.

              • Enough is Enough

                Getting caucus behind you is a pretty important part of the job. If you can’t do that then you clearly aren’t the right person for the job.

                • Lanthanide

                  He is the right person for the job of PM. The caucus aren’t the right people for the job of supporting the leader of the opposition in his aim to become the PM.

                  • Enough is Enough

                    So we purge the caucus and replace them with people who will support Cunliffe?

                    Or we find someone who will unite a diverse group of MP’s who represent a broad range of interest groups.

                    Cunliffe failed and I cannot see how he will ever succeed with this group who clearly do not support him.

                    • Ant

                      The point is that we won’t find anyone, a certain group in caucus are going to hamstring anyone they don’t choose themselves.

                      It’s holding the Labour party to ransom.

                    • Lanthanide

                      So we find someone who will unite a diverse group of MP’s who represent a broad range of interest groups… but who will absolutely fail to win the election when up against John Key?

                      Hint: his first name is also David.

                      Apparently the debates were very popular in this last campaign, and the general consensus is that Cunliffe did well and probably won them all, although only on points rather than any knock-out blows.

                    • karol

                      Whatever. I give up on Labour. They have a caucus who largely don’t seem to stand for core Labour values. They seem to put their views above that of the people Labour wants to represent. The membership wanted Cunliffe and a change of direction. if some in the caucus can’t live with that, I’d have thought the honorable thing would be to resign, and stand aside for new blood who do represent the members and core Labour values.

                      I had been wondering if Cunliffe would do enough this term to get me voting Labour again. For all its faults, Greens are still looking like a better option for me.

                      The Labour caucus looks to be on a suicide mission.

                    • Enough is Enough

                      Karol

                      “For all its faults, Greens are still looking like a better option for me”

                      On that point we do agree

              • Poission

                What part of, Cunliffe wasn’t leader long enough, did you not understand?

                Seems it was enough time to alienate 49% of the population and constraining the man vote to 18%.

  36. Blue 36

    A few quick points from me:

    1. Labour has learned nothing. The infighting continues and we are in the same position we always were, where the caucus is just incapable of keeping their shit private and desperately wants to tell the world how divided and dysfunctional they are. Thanks guys. That’s just what we need. The voters will flock to us if they know that, right?

    2. If you don’t vote, you don’t count. The missing million are never going to show up and it’s time to stop talking about them. Only those who vote get their interests considered.

    3. Fundraising is definitely a problem. Labour just didn’t have the money to get their messages out there. Relying on the media alone to get policy out there is never going to work. Labour needs advertising, and for that we need money.

    4. The capital gains tax and the super age rise should probably be second-term policies, not first term.

    5. Most people buy the right-wing kool aid. The media makes sure they do. Don’t forget that.

    • Ant 36.1

      Yeah, I read the paper today, they literally learned nothing, that’s just absolute contempt for members and volunteers who bust their arses working over this campaign — must be absolutely gutting.

      On Fundraising, every time I look at the donate prompts in Labour’s emails I thought about the type of cowardly destructive behaviour that is going on at the moment and has gone on over the past few years and thought “what’s the point?”. Any good my money (or other members money) might do will be wiped out in an instant by some cowardly dick from caucus who is happy to damage the party through off-the-record whinging to journalists.

  37. Draco T Bastard 37

    This is a good reflection on the election outcomes and well worth reading:

    It appears I was wrong. They didn’t just manage to mitigate damages, they were actually rewarded with a more significant majority. Meanwhile, the major opposition parties – who both appear to be completely exempt from the political revelations at the center of the campaign – suffered significant losses.

    • weka 37.2

      Yeah it’s a good read. however I think we need to knock this one on the head,

      “They didn’t just manage to mitigate damages, they were actually rewarded with a more significant majority.”

      National lost 1% over their last result (that might change with the specials)

      2011: http://imgur.com/Jr06oVW

      2014: http://imgur.com/BKvIGZU

    • George Hendry 37.3

      Thanks for that Draco.

      During the dirty politics revelations I got the impression that the essence of National’s defence was ‘the Left does it too’. (Just so we know, in the absence of almost any evidence.)

      Turned around that reads “the Left do dirty politics. But (just so you know) we do it too”.

      All these months I’ve never seen an attempt to claim the PM doesn’t lie – just that lying’s necessary, ok and even admirable.

      Do you have any thoughts on whether the PM’s Office has found a safe way (so far) to rig the vote and that it was given a trial run at this election? It would explain a lot.

      • Draco T Bastard 37.3.1

        Do you have any thoughts on whether the PM’s Office has found a safe way (so far) to rig the vote and that it was given a trial run at this election?

        A safe way? Possibly not but all it would take is to get one person at each election booth to miscount and because we can’t check to see how our vote was counted we can’t challenge the result.

  38. karol 38

    Sorry, r0b, but as if the election result was not bad enough, the return of the ABCs’ faction fighting has me in despair. The caucus, out of step with the majority of the membership was the big handicap for Labour last term. Now they want more of the same for this term.

    Labour just seems to be on a suicide mission.

    Mana had the right answer – build the party from the flax roots, struggles on up. I hope they get over their KDC hangover, and get back to the long hard struggle to engage with the disengaged.

    The answer to the online political silo, is to build up the offline, face-to-face community. We need regular pan-left wing get togethers, in community halls and centres, with related actions and events.

  39. r0b 39

    Thanks for all the comments folks.

    Those who are addressing me directly, apologies, I won’t be able to reply until tonight. I have a bit of a backlog of deferred work to get through today!

    • r0b 39.1

      Lots of interesting discussion in this thread, thanks all. Some people are putting words in my mouth that I didn’t intend, but I don’t fancy fighting with my friends tonight, so I’ll just wish you all well, and get some sleep…

  40. Ted Blaikie 40

    For the foreseeable future, the next left-of-centre government will be a Labour/Green coalition. As a Labour supporter who has voted for Labour in every election since 1975 I think this reality has to be embraced by both parties and turned from a weakness into a strength.

    In the election just past, Key made good use of the claim “they can’t agree on anything” and was able to appeal to New Zealander’s fear of “unstable Government” when referring to the prospects of a Labour/Green dominated government.

    To me, a formal Labour/Green agreement is now required that has, as it’s singular objective, a Labour/Green (or, in time, Green/Labour) majority coalition government.

    As a minimum, this agreement needs to embrace a commitment to arrive at an agreed common election platform where there is agreement between the parties. It also needs to include a formal commitment to cooperating strategically to replace the current government. This would not prevent the contest of ideas and development of separate policy platforms where no agreement can be reached between the two parties.

    Voters fear the prospect of a government internally devided. The left needs to counteract that fear by demonstrating that Labour and the Greens can work closely together for the common cause of a Labour/Green coalition government.

  41. Sanctuary 41

    Cunliffe shouldn’t resign, but only because I can’t see anyone better to replace him right now. Coatesworth(sp?) and Barnett need to go. They hardly raised a cent and have provided ineffectual leadership (renewal? A bad joke under those two). It beggars belief they are still there today. party renewal will come when the party organisation is held accountable. The gender and identity obsessed candidate selection policy has to go. Picking a candidate because they fit a quota even if they are inappropriate for the profile of the electorate instead of looking at the seat and selecting a candidate who might appeal to it’s voters has devastated Labour’s party vote in provincial NZ.

    Labour needs a party president who can drive renewal with fresh faces via a series of bye-elections over the next 12 months and to find a new, charismatic leader it can parachute in at one of those bye-elections. It needs a party organisation that can raise money.

    So, who should parachute in to lead Labour? Helen Kelly? Karl Urban? Edward Snowden?

    • karol 41.1

      Bryce Edwards is predicting Helen Kelly as PM in 2020.

      • weka 41.1.1

        That would be the Helen Kelly who slagged off the IMP after the election?

        • karol 41.1.1.1

          I don’t know. Depends on how Kelly said it, and her reasons.

          I also was never an IMP fan, and would have preferred that Mana continued on its original path. But that doesn’t mean I (or Kelly?) agree with the way IMP has been demonised by many others.

          I really mainly disapprove of KDC intervening in left wing politics, putting his own ego to the fore. I don’t seem him as being a supporter of left wing values, rather more it was the case of the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

          KDC has been badly treated (illegally treated) by the state crime and surveillance services. His case has exposed many of the dubious workings of these agencies.

          KDC did a great service by bringing Greenwald & Snowden (by video) to NZ. But his ego got the better of him and he could not resist being centre stage.

          Too much of what KDC has done has been all about himself, and not really aiming for the good of Kiwis, especially the least powerful and least well-off Kiwis.

          Mana was/is mainly about a movement building to work for the least well off and least powerful Kiwis. It was/is about working collaboratively as a team, without some celebrity grandstanding. the IP distracted massively from that, while using right wing tools and memes.

          • weka 41.1.1.1.1

            IMP unmitigated ego driven disaster. Travelled NZ in last 4 mths & wkers didn’t identify with it or want it anywhere near Govt.

            I’m willing to put that down to Kelly being upset on election night. But if she takes the view over the next while my respect for her will diminsh hugely.

            IMP voters deserve representation just as much as union voters.

            • Colonial Viper 41.1.1.1.1.1

              I find IMP has been used as a bit of a blame sink by the larger parties. The faults of Labour and Greens are all their own, no one elses. Around 1.2M people didn’t vote and that has nothing to do with Kim Dotcom and everything to do with Greens and Labour who said after last election that they would get ‘the missing million’ out this time around.

              • lprent

                I find IMP has been used as a bit of a blame sink by the larger parties.

                Not really. The issue was palpable amongst a number of centre-left voters I know. They disliked the conservatives and Kim DotCom about as much, but they would have voted National by default just because Labour couldn’t make it clear enough that the IMP wasn’t going to be working for them.

                The reaction against KDC is pretty strong. IMP just got badly stained with it. The whole of the left got stained. The Nats got stained with the conservatives, but they didn’t run such a noisy in-your-face campaign.

                In a campaign where the extremists appear to be gaining power, you’re going to find that the biggest party gets the least fallout.

                I think that both parties could have done a lot better with their get out the vote targeting. But that is a campaign that should be slower and longer term (like starting now) and much better focused. Like targeting under 25’s is pretty much a waste of effort.

                You need some specific demographics rather than a broad campaign and you need to monitor what success you are having. I’ll take a bet that neither Labour nor the Greens track in a database those who they contacted. In fact I’m sure in the case of Labour – there was no code on the sheet for punching.

                A largely wasted effort because it was done too late and done with enthusiasm and not enough thought about how they’d figure out what bits worked..

                • weka

                  “but they would have voted National by default just because Labour couldn’t make it clear enough that the IMP wasn’t going to be working for them.”

                  What, like stating clearly mulitple times that they wouldn’t have the IMP in govt? Which is what they did.

                • karol

                  I think the Greens might have tracked who they contacted. They may have built up a database. Ask them.

            • karol 41.1.1.1.1.2

              Agree.

              I noticed that there were quite a few Pasifika women supporting the Greens. One I talked to felt she wasn’t represented by Mana.

              The Greens do need to look at why they weren’t able to increase their vote by very many – I gather they did get a small increase.

              • RedBaronCV

                I tend to feel that the Green’s have the strongest female voices Meretai and Jan plus Holly before her time out

  42. weka 42

    Stuart Nash: “we support people who work the hardest not complain the loudest”

    Nice to see Labour working on unity and inclusiveness.

  43. Anne 43

    The gender and identity obsessed candidate selection policy has to go. Picking a candidate because they fit a quota even if they are inappropriate for the profile of the electorate instead of looking at the seat and selecting a candidate who might appeal to it’s voters has devastated Labour’s party vote in provincial NZ.

    Absolutely. The problem is: the moment anyone tries to point out it’s not the way to go about it, they are accused of being anti-women, anti-gay, anti-whatever and I suspect there are many members who are afraid to say what they think. I experienced it once and was taken aback by the backlash I received.

    • Sanctuary 43.1

      Yeah, do yourself a favour and NEVER say it on PublicAddress. Those guys are crazy mad on the whole identity politics thing,

    • weka 43.2

      This strikes me as an internal Labour structure and process issue. If the membership has no control over candidate selection, what is going on?

      • karol 43.2.1

        Agree. And the whole beat up of the “identity politics” thing is just a red herring, and misrepresentation that many right wingers and social conservatives use to attack against anything a bit to the left.

        • Sanctuary 43.2.1.1

          How can you sit there and type that barely 48 hours after a complete rout at the polls?

          • Hanswurst 43.2.1.1.1

            Possibly because she doesn’t believe that identity politics was the reason for the loss. After all, there’s no real evidence that it was, is there?

            • Colonial Viper 43.2.1.1.1.1

              I’m waiting for the polling demographic data breakdowns to come out. My personal belief (based on a poll taken before the election) is that male support for Labour was noticeably lower than female support, to the extent that it was responsible for a 1.5% to 2.5% drop in the final Labour result. Some will think good riddance, no doubt.

              • karol

                There’s this from Max Rusbrooke on the female representation in the new parliament:

                Gender analysis of party MPs: National 28% female, Labour 38%, Greens 54%, NZ First 18%. Total Parliament: 32%

                And there seems to be a lot of people very vocal about maintaining that status quo.

                Also, note the GP has strong representation of women, while not making a big noise about it.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Good on the Greens (and to a lesser extent Labour) improving gender equality in their caucus. Labour was stuffed by their low party vote which meant some experienced female MPs missed out.

                  Nevertheless, far more voters went for National who had a ridiculously low 28% female representation.

                  • karol

                    But the Nats are not much lower than Labour’s senior, MPs or those with higher list places.

                    Cunliffe should have culled the old guard when he had the chance.

                    • Hanswurst

                      If he secures the continued leadership, now probably is his best (maybe only) chance. If the party supports him, the only conclusion is that the loss has been blamed not on him, and not on some nebulous, pan-Labour “disunity”, but squarely on the appearance of disunity fomented against him by others in caucus.

                    • weka

                      “Cunliffe should have culled the old guard when he had the chance.”

                      As I understand it. it’s a caucus decision not a leader decision. Does he have the numbers?

        • Colonial Viper 43.2.1.2

          Agree. And the whole beat up of the “identity politics” thing is just a red herring, and misrepresentation

          Well you know my views on this. Labour’s relative emphasis on identity politics, which the Dirty Politics machine plays up endlessly (because they know it costs Labour dearly in terms of cultural fit with what used to be core Labour voter base), has meant Labour has materially lost votes and support.

          I’m also waiting to see how many women supported National in this election. It will be much more than the numbers of women who supported Labour and Greens put together.

          • karol 43.2.1.2.1

            From the polls I’ve seen the Nats have been slowly losing support from women. I suspect raw numbers will show both more men and more women voted for the Nats than Labour.

            As I see it, part of Labour’s problem is not adapting to the 21st century context. Partly that means being trapped in the old masculine notion of who Labour represents – workers in that context is often coded to mean tradesmen, etc, and relegates low income women, in and out of work to a secondary status.

            I think the whole turf warfare approach of some old Labourites is off-putting – ie the sense of entitlement to Maori votes, TTT, etc. And the way they viciously attack other left wing parties.

            • Colonial Viper 43.2.1.2.1.1

              Partly that means being trapped in the old masculine notion of who Labour represents – workers in that context is often coded to mean tradesmen, etc

              Don’t think so. Admittedly I’ve been a Labour Party member for relatively few years, but what you have described is absolutely the opposite of the case with the party down here in Dunedin. It also certainly doesn’t apply to the other nearby regional electorates I am familiar with (who all have excellent, strong female candidates – Waitaki, Clutha Southland, Invercargill).

              From the polls I’ve seen the Nats have been slowly losing support from women. I suspect raw numbers will show both more men and more women voted for the Nats than Labour.

              Agree – except National voters male and female greatly outnumber voters for even Labour plus Greens.

        • RedBaronCV 43.2.1.3

          Ask yourself “how would Nact fare if they faced a barrage of “women ban” comments as they pick candidates” It is of course pretty much the reality and social media need to call Nact on this one everytime, along with the size of their alcohol and expense bills when they dis beneficiaries.

          The social media have managed to get them to shut up on some things (and even got Murray to apologise) so lets call it like it is when they start up.

    • Jenny Kirk 43.3

      Yep – its very nasty when “the pack” turns on you, Anne. I’ve experienced it as well.
      It takes a bit of doing to go back in and try again.

      Labour needs to streamline its various sectors – cut ’em right back to the most important perhaps – unions, women, Maori , maybe Pasifika as well. Get rid of its unweildy big internal council – make it smaller, more efficient. Needs to get rid of its Rogernomics undertone – goodness knows how, because so many of them hold electorate seats.

      • Anne 43.3.1

        Get rid of its unweildy big internal council – make it smaller, more efficient.

        Plenty of us have been calling for that for years.

      • BM 43.3.2

        No Man sector?

        I find this surprising, 1/2 the population and no representation?

        • Hanswurst 43.3.2.1

          There’s a Minster for women’s affairs as well. The reason is that there are issues with under-representation of women. The same doesn’t apply to men. It’s very simple.

          • Colonial Viper 43.3.2.1.1

            Yet men across the board die younger, kill themselves far more frequently, are imprisoned and reoffend at far higher rates, have higher rates of alcohol abuse etc.

            • karol 43.3.2.1.1.1

              Oh. So that means, less women needed in the House?

              edit: Patriarchy/kyriarchy is brutal, it divides men in a battle for supremacy, while excluding and/or marginalising many men and women.

              • Colonial Viper

                I was responding to Hanwurst’s comment about a Ministry; I said nothing about Parliament or MPs.

                Yes, Kyriarchy sucks.

                • karol

                  Given that there are a majority of male MPs, there is surely enough MPs to address issues that impact strongly on men. Thus the balancing need for a Ministry of Women’s Affairs.

  44. weka 44

    Niki Harre ‏@NikiHarre 2 hrs
    @lailaharre @CitizenBomber We need to start talking values – not strategy. What do we most deeply care about? What are we trying to sustain?

    Conversation, https://twitter.com/NikiHarre/status/513790334866714624

  45. GRiM 45

    q)Want do people want in a government?
    a) leadership

    q)how do we chose leaders?
    a) faith : that they have the strength, knowledge and integrity to do what has to be done. policy is secondary,

    The whole voting system is based on the voter handing over their responsibilities and trusting the government.

    If labour really want to govern they need to make a stand, no more pandering, appeasing and apologising, to move national voters across they need to show nationals faults and labours strengths, get behind moment of truth, it didn’t harm the left, the lefts weak soft not wanting to offend stance is the poison.

    Cunliffe thanking Key etc was pathetic, Cunliffe unable to be a man, Cunliffe distancing himself from dirty politics, weak, weak weak. Dirty politics, MOT are important, Labour downplaying this was a display of self serving politics at the expense of the needs of the country/voters, a lot of national supports know Key is corrupt but stick with national as they correctly see labour as too weak to govern.

    The National government have made corrupt and finanically bad decisions, Labour need to explain this clearly and simply, and demand a full investigation, and show it has the strength, conviction and integrity to be an alterative and effectively govern.

  46. Ron 46

    Nash on rnz this morning. How on earth do we get people like him standing for Labour. Still he hasn’t made up his mind yet whether he will stand for leader. Good grief he is not even sworn in as a mp and he is already opining his run for leadership.

    • weka 46.1

      Lynnette Williams
      ‏@LynnW192
      @gtiso This is the man who Simon Lusk described as an ‘exceptionally gifted politician.’

    • Sanctuary 46.2

      You get “people like him” because, since it may have escaped your notice, he won a provincial electorate seat from National during an election when Labour was utterly crushed.

      What is wrong with you? We were wiped out, and you are getting all hating on one of the few bright spots?

      People getting stuck into Nash remind me of a story about Abraham Lincoln and the enemies of US Grant:

      “Some enemies and critics of General Grant once called upon Mr. Lincoln and urged him to oust Grant from his command. They repeated with malicious intent the gossip that Grant drank. “What does he drink?” asked Lincoln.

      “Whisky,” was the answer, “and in unusual quantities.” “Well,” said the President, “just find out what particular kind he uses, and I’ll send a barrel to each of the other generals.”

      When again pressed on other grounds to get rid of Grant, he declared, “I can’t spare that man; he fights.”

      • Karen 46.2.1

        Nash won because the right vote was split between McVicar and a weak Nat candidate who wasn’t even from the area. If Tremain had remained and McVicar had not stood then Nash would have lost.

        He has never denied the accusation that he employed Simon Lusk’s help.

    • Jenny Kirk 46.3

      There are just too many of the Nash ilk in the Labour caucus right now – all of them want to take over as Leader. None of them have a clue what the Labour Party is really all about …..
      And Nash didn’t get there on his own. He got into Parliament this time with Garth McVicar’s help.

      • Sanctuary 46.3.1

        I kind of agree with you, but we need all the winners we can get right now – beggars are in no position to be picky.

      • millsy 46.3.2

        Probably should be greatful that National stood a candidate — McVicar in Parliament would have not been good.

  47. Danone 47

    “Activists are different. We don’t see the world like regular people, and our intuitions about how regular people see the world are usually wrong.”

    This the core of the problem – and as I expect the activists not to acknowledge this (they are not known for their self-reflection), it will stay ‘the’ problem.

    • karol 47.1

      That really is a dehumanizing and marginalising of those that would speak most strongly for left values.

      And I’m not clear how “activists” are so clearly separated from”regular” people.

      Most people I know offline would probably class me in the “regular” bunch.

  48. Tony 48

    I completely agree. I’m a Labour supporter, I’ve tinkered with Greens but I come from a long line of Labour supporters and that’s where my allegience lies. I work in media, I’ve worked in an Auckland newsroom and I’m well aware of the effect of NZ’s corporate journalism on public opinion – I started coming to The Standard to get a fresh perspective a few years ago.

    I started getting more involved here on The Standard website and started leaving comments when I felt I had something to add. What I found was that my opinions would get completely ripped up, I would be dismissed as *insert criticism here* and told that real Labour values were actually *insert opinion here*. My effort at getting involved resulted in me feeling completely alienated. I read the articles less and stopped commenting all together. I was actually contemplating getting involved in the Labour party, but this experience turned me off completely.

    I don’t work in a factory – I work in an office. I still believe in Labour party values, but the style of Labour’s campaign was bland and didn’t speak to people like me. Like it or not, I am from a generation that has never belonged in a union. Talk of strengthening unions isn’t relevant to me. I support it, I support increasing the minimum wage (I earn four times that) but it’s not going to attract young people such as myself who work in contract situations. More relevantly though, alienating people such as myself, telling me I don’t know what I’m talking about, or that I don’t belong, I’m not a REAL Labour supporter etc is simply going to result in more results such as on Saturday.

    My grandfather was a panelbeater from Manurewa that used to don his car up in Labour ribbons and drive his workers, their families and their friends to the polling booth on election day. I have a genuine desire to get involved, but as a middle class creative I don’t feel welcome. Until I do, I’ll sit on the sidelines and watch. In my heart, I know which team I’ll be backing, it’ll just be from a distance.

    Be more inclusive and more accepting – surely those are the values of the left…

    [lprent: You appear to have a number of misconceptions about this site and what it is intended to do.

    This isn’t a Labour party blog. It is a labour movement blog. This means that there are greens, unionists, computer programmers, net junkies, students, and just about everyone else here etc etc. Read the about.

    And you are talking about how this blog operates. Read the policy. Notice that the debate is defined as being “robust”. That means you and everyone else gets criticized. If you don’t like it, then try another blog or start your own. The blog rules aren’t changing. This isn’t meant to be a mass audience site – that would be quite a different setup. It is meant to allow activists from the left and those interested in them to communicate.

    If you want to find a Labour party blog, then try http://blog.labor.org.nz. If you want polite discussion about politics then try http://publicaddress.net.nz. Or you could read the comments here for a while and realize that a robust discussion is the best way to elicit what people are really thinking. ]

    • millsy 48.1

      So what policies do you think Labour should adopt or drop?

      • Tony 48.1.1

        I like Labour’s policies; capital gains tax, R&D tax credits, compulsory savings rate to decrease dependency on interest rates, local government procurement contracts, NZ Inc etc – they appeal to my progressive politics. The problem is that your everyday kiwi doesn’t see how it will benefit them. I think they needed to more effective at finding one or two policies that would positively affect your ‘everyday kiwi’ and communicate them far more simply and I hate to say it, but in a more polished fashion than some low budget 80’s TV ad.

        I work in TV promotion, advertising and corporate video – like it or not, advertising is important. Labour’s ad was positive but it was boring. An ad like that doesn’t envoke emotion and it doesn’t capture young minds. National on the other hand did very well to produce a professional ad that scared people into voting left because they thought it might hurt the economy. We know Labour would be more than capable, but Labour didn’t adequately communicate to the voters in the middle (this is where it was lost) that they would be capable.

        To me, something is very wrong in Labour’s communications team. It’s been this way for many years. It all appears very amateur to be honest – I’m not sure if it’s a lack of budget, but I feel like I could personally do better with a couple of my mates and whatever it would cost for ad placement.

        Sorry, I’m being brutal, but I’m pretty disappointed to be honest…

        • Tony 48.1.1.1

          Sorry – “scared people FROM voting left…”

        • Karen 48.1.1.2

          I agree with you absolutely, Tony. I also work in the media, as do many of my friends. We all thought Labour’s television advertising campaign was really poor.
          I know plenty of creative people who would have worked for free improving the communication of Labour’s policies. Some offered their services but nobody got back to them.

          The “vote positive” slogan was just dumb. The design of the billboards was ugly, and “party vote Labour” far too small. The red should have been muted, darker.

          I also agree they should have focussed on promoting 2-3 policies that would resonate with voters and push them in a way that would be easy for voters to understand.

          How do we make sure there is something better next time?

          • Colonial Viper 48.1.1.2.1

            All very good points. As for making sure that things are better next time – a lot of people in the campaign management team have had a turn for 2 elections now, and need to go.

          • lprent 48.1.1.2.2

            I wasn’t particularly happy with “Vote Positive”. Apart from anything else I wound up spending a lot of time explaining this site wasn’t the Labour Party. But also it didn’t fit with a debating style for the TV debates.

            I’d have preferred something simple like “Vote Labour”

            It is always a problem getting Labour to take help early enough. They usually wind up squabbling in caucus in their usual stupid factionalism and displays of personal ambition in the first 6 months after the election and forget that the rest of the country and activists exist. Unfortunately the first 6 months after an election is when you win the next one.

            The irritating thing about it is that the decision making process goes down the toilet because the silly MPs are acting like children. And yet they are about the worst people to get involved in a party wide campaign. They’re good at being charming to people. But they are extraordinarily deficient in the art of making decisions at the appropriate time.

          • shona 48.1.1.2.3

            Contact Tim Barnett contact the president offer your services. Go to local Labour meetings if you’re urban. Committees yeah I know boring old hat stuff. Better left to the greys. Anyhow contact Labour HQ via the blogsite . Send in your resume. It’s easier in the regions to get to know who is who. Hell contact a Labour MP. They will jump at the chance to use offers from creatives in advertising and communication. If my youngest is still in NZ come next election( works in advertising, social media ) I am going to offer her services free of charge.
            If Labour is to communicate better ( and I know people under 30 were listening to Cunliffe in the last week he WON the debates. He was heard) they need all the help they can get. Fresh blood will be welcomed with open arms.

            • Karen 48.1.1.2.3.1

              Unfortunately they don”t jump at the chance, Shona. They are pleased for help in general electorate work (and I have done that this election) but what needs to change is the communications at the highest level.

              My suggestion would be that the Labour Party start looking at this now, not wait until the next election. Set up something where film makers, documentary makers, advertising creatives etc can register to help, and can get together to start putting together material that can, for example, go on youtube to counter the MSM messages.

              • Colonial Viper

                Your experience is not isolated unfortunately, although your suggestions are very good. I know people who are subject area leaders in their particular industry or interest group, and too often the response they get from Labour when help is offered is tepid at best. It reveals some internal organisational and cultural issues. Particularly with a ‘closed shop’ at higher levels of the party.

                The Greens are actually far better at this. But for gawds sakes don’t go to them… 😛

                • Karen

                  I am a financial supporter of both Labour and the Greens, but a member of neither. I offered to help Labour this time because they needed it most, and will continue to help them as long as they don’t veer right. If they do, I will offer to help the Greens, though I think they are just as much of a closed shop at higher levels.

                  The Greens also made a huge mistake with their billboards this time – but I think they know that now.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    That’s a thoughtful and targeted strategy.

                    I joked during the campaign that the Greens should have printed a camo pattern on the corflute to improve their visibility.

                    I’m used to campaigning in rural electorates and the billboards (hoardings) must pass the rural highways test. Multiple small faces, wordy, small font, all utterly utterly useless when you drive by at 100km/h. National’s were the best. Labour and Green hoardings seem to have been designed and approved by townies for townies, for urban crawl concrete jungle situations. Hopeless.

        • Tracey 48.1.1.3

          id be surprised if anyone will make a nasty comment to that observation…

        • Clemgeopin 48.1.1.4

          I was not too happy with the Labour website. Too hard to find the policies etc.
          That is one important urgent work that Labour needs to do: Get a clever, smart professional to redo the website so that it is much more user friendly,clear, consise and much better than it is at present.

          Take a look to see what I mean:
          Labour.org nz

        • Lanthanide 48.1.1.5

          What did you think about the 2011 election campaign? It largely focussed on asset sales, but IMO it had really slick and cohesive billboards, TV advertising and the opening campaign video was excellent.

          • Colonial Viper 48.1.1.5.1

            Phil Goff missing on all the signage, candidate only signage pushing the electorate vote but not the party vote.

            • Lanthanide 48.1.1.5.1.1

              Yes, but apart from that. I’m talking about the graphic design and cohesiveness of the adverts and billboards together, along with the opening statement.

              • Colonial Viper

                Opening statement was vey cool of course, but in the end not many people believed that Labour was genuine in its ‘return home.’ Graphic design etc was a big step up from previous, with a modern new logo and cohesive design language throughout.

    • Danone 48.2

      Well said and symptomatic of many (potential) labour voters I would think. I expect comments like your’s to go straight over their heads, being dismissed as irrelevant. They seem to know better and look what they just harvested….a third loss, bigger than the ones before.

      • Tony 48.2.1

        I hope they consider this a chance for reflection. There are many good people such as myself that want to get involved and we possess the skills and networks that would be invaluable to increasing the popularity of the party.

        Labour needs to rediscover its “cool”. As the party that supports film, TV, music, arts and culture, it’s a natural fitting. They had it under Clark but have lost it now.

        • Colonial Viper 48.2.1.1

          +1

          Labour can act way too much like closed shop with echo chamber characteristics. And I’m in the friggin party lol.

        • Tel 48.2.1.2

          I agree. Re-discover or invent a new cool though? Either way, I think finding their cool stems from a new leader taken from a new mould. I look at the current Labour list and one person stands out: Louisa Wall.

          A young vibrant intelligent hard working woman such as Louisa in this age of centrist populist mmp politics that has not got one foot in the grave or a receding hairline is a far better choice of leader, because my gut tells me if Labour have any of the following:
          Cunliffe
          Shearer
          Parker
          Robertson
          as a party leader in the next election this topic can be dredged up from the Standard’s archive to be repeated bemoaning the same things all over again, and that is not just unfortunate and avoidable, but just plain wrong.

          • Colonial Viper 48.2.1.2.1

            Give her a full term as a Cabinet Minister then she’ll be ready – but not before. Don’t squander good talent by pushing it up before time.

      • Tracey 48.2.2

        what policy or policies do you think would have better appeal?

        • Tony 48.2.2.1

          I think the policies are good. They just need to improve their communications. It’s cliche, but in 30 second tv spots and online banners you’re selling the sizzle not the sausage. Some of my lower middle class mates have said this:
          “I’ve voted Labour before, but the economy’s going well at the moment and I’ve got a mortgage to pay and mouths to feed – how can the Labour Party improve my life?”
          If that can’t be answered in a sentence or two then the opportunity’s lost.

          The CGT was a difficult sell because Joe Average sees his house price go up and thinks he’s getting rich and that Labour want to tax that. We know the family home is exempt, but it needs to be explained so perhaps that’s a policy that shouldn’t be front and centre. I can’t answer what policies have better appeal right now, but after a few barbeques out at my mate’s backyards in west auckland I’ll probably know! These are former Labour voters who now vote National – I see that as the biggest problem. I do know that John Key stands for ambition and people like that, they too want to do better. Appealing to this is crucial, especially for men. On the flip side they see a Labour party led by a guy who apologises for being a man… again, this is not my view – it’s that of your average bloke.

          And just lastly, where the parties at? I DJ on the weekend and I can’t understand why there aren’t daytime festivals with local bands and DJs hosted by Labour to try and engage younger people. Perhaps I missed it, but nothing spoke to me or my friends. Team up with local artists, partner with bands, DJ’s – I know this is for Labour Party people (to clarify for the anon bloke – not the labour movement whatever) but there should be an effort to be inclusive, work with these aspects and have fun with it. It all appears a bit old and boring but it should be fun and exciting! Obama nailed this in his first election campaign.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 48.3

      Tony, you are not commenting on a Labour Party website: why did you expect to find exclusively Labour Party values here, especially in circumstances in which (according to you) Labour have forgotten how to articulate them?

      “Robust debate”, remember?

      • Tony 48.3.1

        I’m commenting on the “voice of the Labour movement”. I realise it’s not the Labour party website and that some people here hold more pure socialist values, many vote Green, many vote Mana – I’m aware of how broad-based the website is.

        I didn’t expect to find exclusively Labour Party values here at all, so apologies if that was how my comment was communicated. I was trying to explain that the responses I received on the website were more often than not dismissive (what would you know etc), at times pretty nasty and also almost “elitist”, when the reality was that we were pretty much splitting hairs.

        I’m all for robust debate, but one comment I left that related to broadcasting (I work in broadcasting) was written off completely and I was personally criticised. I was trying to give an insight to the industry and I was ripped up for it by someone who clearly held hard left views (or perhaps pretended to). It was angry and destructive.

        Debates are important, but it should be a discussion of ideas – not a nasty argument. I think The Standard is a great website and I’d like to see more people get involved, but if my experience is anything to go by it’ll probably just stay the same. It’s not my intention to offend anyone, just putting my point of view across. I’ve had my say, I’ll disappear back into the shadows now… ka kite ano

        [lprent: I left a note on your previous comment. But the reality is that you will get people objecting to almost anything that someone else says. Usually you just ignore it unless they say something worth responding to. If they get too over the top then eventually (we all work) you will have the satisfaction of watching them get banned for some time. ]

        • One Anonymous Bloke 48.3.1.1

          You’re going to find the “Peoples’ Front of Judea” comedy sketch reenacted here on any given day of the week.

          You were advancing it as a reason to not get involved in the Labour Party, not the labour (lower case ‘l’) movement. I’m just pointing out the flaw in your reasoning: giving good constructive criticism normally involves making sense of some sort.

          • Tony 48.3.1.1.1

            “giving good constructive criticism normally involves making sense of some sort”

            I considered reading and commenting on the “labour movement” website as a first step to getting involved in the “Labour Party”. Apologies for not clarifying that I realised the distinction between them and for not pinpointing my exact motives with regards to how I thought that progression from online involvement to actual involvement could unfold (again, perhaps it’s prudent for me to distinguish for your benefit, that I realise this is the voice of the “labour movement” not the “Labour Party”).

            Thanks for proving my initial point though. And thanks to everyone else who did get it and perhaps read between the lines.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 48.3.1.1.1.1

              I just think that treating the tone of debate in a pseudonymous forum as an indicator of something other than itself will yield mixed results.

              Not to mention attract moderator attention.

              Your initial point was about “Labour values”, whatever you think they are. You then used the tone of debate here as described above.

              Someone is going to be nasty to you in real life, not just online. Your ability to resist them is worth more than wearing personal insults from the excitable, no?

              • Tony

                And the post mortem continues!

                I was speaking broadly and commenting on other people’s reactions. But good point – what are Labour values? People seem to know what National are about and it’s working well for them.

                I’m used to people being nasty buddy – perhaps I expected more on this website. My mistake…

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  I can’t see why: they let Tories contribute too you know.

                  Your comment that people know what National is about doesn’t bear scrutiny. National talk about everything except policy, beyond the vaguest talking points.

                  I think you are ignoring the consequences of the way money and politics intersect in New Zealand, as though some formula for the left will balance millions and millions of dollars being spent on a constant stream of hate speech and abuse of power.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Your comment that people know what National is about doesn’t bear scrutiny. National talk about everything except policy, beyond the vaguest talking points.

                    National just won an FPP victory in an MMP election. A rule alone majority. Whatever we might like to think, they got far more NZers on side than Labour and Greens added together.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      They did so by avoiding policy discussion like the plague, and a relentless stream of illegality and hate speech.

                      If the authorities charged with upholding the law cannot act against them, this criminal gang, with the resources of the state behind it, is beyond conventional political opposition.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      OAB I wish Labour all the best of luck in its next campaign focussing on trumping National with policy policy policy

          • Murray Olsen 48.3.1.1.2

            It was the Judean People’s Front sketch. Jeez OAB, no wonder you lot lost 😛

            Tony – when I first commented here, the reaction was a bit much and I almost left. I’m glad I persevered, because I’ve learned quite a lot. I hope you do too.

        • karol 48.3.1.2

          I am one of the people who has strong feelings on broadcasting. I don’t know if it is a comment from me you are referring to – I try to avoid personal comments usually.

          I do have strong views on broadcasting. Working in media does not mean you necessarily have views about it that are above criticism. In fact, it is likely you have an investment in the system as it is.

          I don’t know what your views on broadcasting are – I may agree with some or all of them.

          But here we all get criticism for our arguments, regardless of our previous background or qualifications. This blog is a bit of a level playing field. Our comments stand or fall on the strength of our arguments. And the debates can be intense, and as they say “robust”.

          • Tony 48.3.1.2.1

            I read your media bias analysis a couple of years back and I thought it was spot on. Robust is good, cheeky is good – nasty is bad.

        • RedBaronCV 48.3.1.3

          In broad sense Tony I’ve found that saying things like ” we would love you to enrol and vote, preferably centre left and would really love you to party vote for -us- but hey your choice is a good one ” seems to work quite well.

          And please everyone don’t forget that there are a lot of split voters out there and some of them helped to get other party candidates over the line shutting out a NAct person from the salary and perks of office to campaign on. And yes, some strategic candidate selection would help

  49. Sanctuary 49

    “…This the core of the problem – and as I expect the activists not to acknowledge this (they are not known for their self-reflection), it will stay ‘the’ problem…”

    To many on the left have already decided the ice cold bucket of reality tipped over their heads on Saturday night must have been some sort of charity event and not a wake up call.

  50. weka 50

    Analysis of Clayton Cosgrove, his election campaign and contribution to Labour

    https://twitter.com/edmuzik/status/513792074249154563/photo/1

  51. venezia 51

    I’m with Karol and Observer (Tokoroa) in their points made above. An indication of where we are at as a country was an example my Mother (Labour voter all her life) gave yesterday. She lives in a Rest Home where the carers are paid minimum wages, RNs earn lower than DHB rates, and management are constantly cutting back on their conditions. The staff were commenting on how they were celebrating Key’s win – they had almost all voted National – two ticks.

    • Colonial Viper 51.1

      Sheeezus the NZNO needs to sharpen up its messaging to its members. Labour’s social and cultural disconnect with its base is reaching epic proportions.

  52. Puckish Rogue 52

    The main lesson the left must take on board (though they won’t because the arrogance is far too ingrained) is that the Left are out of touch with what the majority of what NZ wants

    John Key knows what NZ wants, David Cunliffe tells NZ what they want and thats a big difference

    • Tracey 52.1

      no the big difference … oh forget it.

      • Puckish Rogue 52.1.1

        Of course theres more then one reason but the biggest reason is that the left are out of touch and until they remedy that they’ll be out in cold more often then not

        • Tracey 52.1.1.1

          is it possible for national and labour to both be “in touch”.

          realistically and with specifics what would ever make you vote labour or left instead of your current preference.

          • Puckish Rogue 52.1.1.1.1

            is it possible for national and labour to both be “in touch”.

            – Sure ok if you want to look at it that way it means that while Labour is in touch with NZ National is more in touch

            realistically and with specifics what would ever make you vote labour or left instead of your current preference.

            – hmm thats quite a question but here some ideas…

            – at the moment I look at Labour and I see a fracutured party besit by in-fighting, in-fighting thats been going on for years now so basically I feel if you can’t run your own party how can you run a country

            – the whole broad church is all well and good but who speaks for the lower-middle class working man? It seems to me you have a rainbow wing, a feminist wing, union wing, maori/pacific wing, a teachers wing etc etc but who speaks for me? I see Damien O’connor as a good man, someone i could vote (and would have if i was in his electorate) but it seems that who and what he represents isn’t what the modern labour party is about

            – Identity politics, man ban and sorry for being a man while it may be well-intentioned turns me right off

            – Failure to get policies costed by anyone independent means I can’t trust Labour to implement what they say they want to

            – David cunliffe is just really awful, theres so many examples i could use but he seems to like apoligising yet won’t apoligise for his part in Labours poor performance. Also during the election he banged on about how bad the economy was yet afterwards says its hard to fight against an economy doing well…he just tries to hard to be all things to all people
            – there’ll be more but thats a good start

  53. karol 53

    A quotable tweet from Danyl McLaughlan:

    It’s almost as if having a divided party where half the MPs refuse to campaign for the party vote is electoral suicide

    • Tracey 53.1

      I DO enjoy danyls tweets

    • Jenny Kirk 53.2

      Yep – Karol. And tie that with the Clayton Cosgrove link above – and you have a major part of the answer of why Labour has done so badly. The ABCs are still there – they’ve added to their grouping with some newly elected MPs – and until they all grow up, or go away, Labour will continue to languish.

    • Puckish Rogue 53.3

      To be fair though they knew Labour was in major trouble with a deeply unpopular leader so they were trying to save their jobs

    • Ant 53.4

      I noted here before that there were barely any “Party Vote” or Cunliffe hoardings in my electorate and someone said they would be going up and give the volunteers some time, they never did, and it was all the local MP signs so it looks like it was an overt decision.

      • karol 53.4.1

        hmmm. There were Cunliffe Party vote billboards in Kelston. I had to queue to vote at Kelston. We were told there other other booths in Kelston that didn’t have queues. but i was on foot, so the time taken to go to another booth would not have been much less than my queuing time.

  54. Cat Weasel 54

    Saying the continued slide in Labour’s vote is down to KDC is pure scapegoating by a left that can’t explain why it’s no longer relevant, even to it’s core constituency.

    It appears to me that, unlike the NP’s Epsom voters, its either don’t understand MMP, or, in fact do too well and just positively didn’t want a Labour led government.

    KDC wasn’t responsible for the Christchurch electorate party vote not going to it any more than he was for Hone’s defeat.

    But for that last event the MIP strategy would’ve been successful.

    That’s solely down to a poor strategy on Labour’s part, inspired by what appears motivation to shore up and reverse its’ collapsing share of the left vote.

    They should’ve instead had an accommodation similar to that of the Nat’s in Epsom, except it would’ve borne fruit.

    If the post election response is to turn on it’s stable mates in an attempt to grow by consuming them, then we will be looking at a fourth or even fifth term NP Govt.

    Instead of going into the election as a united and coordinated coalition (as in reality the NP is), a ‘Government in waiting’, they chose to surrender the narrative about the left to the Nat’s and appear visibly uncomfortable when answering questions about their relationships and avoiding being seen in public with one another.

    I feel the real questions are;

    Is the Labour Party relevant anymore to a society defined over the last 25 years by classical liberal economics, a process begun under it and to which it largely still subscribes?

    To paraphrase Marx, can you have a main party of the left ‘that doesn’t reflect the means of production’? On the right the Nat’s clearly do.

    Why do LP policies fail to resonate with their own voters, who though worse off under National, were persuaded to vote against their own self interest?

    Is it declining because its traditional unified constituency is, and not the other way around. And if it focuses more on traditional support and policies will that in anyway reverse the trend?

    Even if it abandons such, solely in order to acquire a centrist appeal, should it. Is its purpose political survival or about representing labour, regardless of the size that constituency becomes?

    And if it can’t bring itself to openly profess core labour policies then should it still run with the brand associations of ‘Labour’?

    E.g. is the brand holding them back or they, the brand.

    • Colonial Viper 54.1

      Saying the continued slide in Labour’s vote is down to KDC is pure scapegoating by a left that can’t explain why it’s no longer relevant, even to it’s core constituency…

      KDC wasn’t responsible for the Christchurch electorate party vote not going to it any more than he was for Hone’s defeat.

      But for that last event the MIP strategy would’ve been successful.

      Yep. Kudos on tactical voting by a lot of NATs and NZFs to take Hone out. Winning that electorate seat was what everything Internet-Mana represented was predicated on and the right wing figured it out.

    • karol 54.2

      I don’t think the IMP is responsible for Labour’s defeat. But IMP didn’t help the left. If Harawira hadn’t made that decision to join with KDC (and then persuade other Mana people to go along with it), Harawira would most likely still be int he House. IMP also managed to suck a bit of oxygen from other left parties, and to taint the left generally.

      Maybe if KDC had set up the party, then took a back seat, it might have worked. But it always seemed to me to be driven by KDC’s ego. And that’s a lot of ifs, and too much use of means that are not those I see as part of the left.

      I strongly objected to IMP using a coat-tailing strategy. I had spent a lot of time denouncing NACT for gaming the system by using that in Epsom – something I saw as anti-democratic. The left’s response was to encourage voters to vote National in Epsom.

      So, when IMP decided to use a similar coat-tailing strategy, I was not happy. furthermore, it opened the door for opponents to go for the counter- gaming strategy of encouraging other parties’ followers to vote for Davis. You reap what you sew.

      And Harawira’s decision has done some damaging to the presence that Mana was developing. IMP also sucked in a lot of earnest left wing energy that could have been better spent elsewhere.

      It was never a smart strategy to set up a new party so close to the election. it was never smart for it to be so strongly fronted by KDC.

      The left generally though, needs to reflect, and regroup. Labour cannot blame KDC for its failings.

  55. Mark 55

    Activists do not win elections and their in lies labours problem. Activists are necessary for their ideas but at the end that has to be moulded into workable policy that is acceptable to the voter. Labour used to stand for workern, jobs fairness. Now it is impossible to tell what it stands for.

    Labour opposed harvesting dead trees on the west coast while workers are struggling to find jobs. Surely that is anti worker the bloody trees were already dead. This party has lost what it was formed for with too much focus on liberalism and not enough on getting work for workers.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 55.1

      Making asinine statements about what fallen trees are just demonstrates your ignorance, undermining your well-meaning platitudes.

      Don’t you want to offer some constructive advice as opposed to half-bright dogma?

      • Puckish Rogue 55.1.1

        Really simple in that situation.

        Labour agrees to the use of fallen tress = Labour for the workers
        Greens oppose because well thats what the Greens do = Greens for the environment

        Taken together theres two options for the left wing vote = good for the left overall

        Is it really that difficult?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 55.1.1.1

          Even simpler: don’t take policy “advice” from right wing ratfuckers.

          Short term profits that workers will not be paid extra to extract is not an economic policy, but it’s good of you to display your naked greed again.

          • Puckish Rogue 55.1.1.1.1

            I’d said say something pithy but when your party breaks 48% and is on track for 4 (yes 4 ) terms all I really have to say is “look at the scoreboard” and smile
            🙂

    • millsy 55.2

      Do you like National Parks and conservation land Mark?

    • Colonial Viper 55.3

      Labour used to stand for workern, jobs fairness. Now it is impossible to tell what it stands for.

      Huge numbers of voters appear to agree with you.

  56. gobsmacked 56

    Blimey, 357 comments already!

    So, one more won’t make much difference. Here it is anyway …

    Priority number one: let’s not get distracted into straw-clutching and defensive responses. This result was really, really bad for Labour. Everybody connected to the party – including Labour voters, like me – has to start from that inescapable fact.

    I couldn’t care less who leads Labour into another term of opposition, followed by another one. I just want to hear Labour MPs say “We’ve failed, we’ve failed for a long time, we will spend as much time as it takes to listen and learn, and we will FINALLY stop behaving like we know what we’re doing. Because clearly, we don’t. And we’re sorry.”

    A bunch of resignations from caucus should follow, but probably won’t.

    Last point: the problems for the Labour Party are NOT the same as the problems for the left. The latter is a long-term historical struggle, been going on for centuries, making progress against the forces of conservatism, and it will continue.

    Whether Labour MPs have anything to do with that struggle is a different issue. One they will have to decide for themselves.

    • KJT 56.1

      I think some will have to decide if they are “Labour” MP’s.

    • Hanswurst 56.2

      I don’t think they should go to town on apologising for failure. I don’t think the electorate is terribly interested in their post-mortem. It is interested in what they put out there in terms of image, vision and policy. Obviously, they shouldn’t refuse to acknowledge shortcomings of the campaign, and they should answer any questions put to them about that – but that’s a different thing. I think that apologising for things too often was one of Cunliffe’s less effective tendencies since taking over the leadership (and I don’t just mean in his speech to Women’s Refuge).

      I think that, if Cunliffe is reaffirmed in the leadership (and he should be), he would have a very strong case to say privately to any opponents in caucus, “We lost an election, and the party doesn’t blame me, it blames you. It’s time to discuss how you can be effective from the back benches or when to announce your retirement from parliament.” He would need to be careful, but it needs to be done.

  57. karol 57

    I think the launch of Dirty Politics, and the MoT came too late. The result was to dent the Nats’ credibility somewhat, but the Lusk plan came into effect – it did not engage voters, especially of the left.

    These two welcome exposures of the Nats’ lies and covert ops, sucked the air from the Greens and Labour campaigns. It was not enough time to give people a reason to vote left.

    We need to start doing that now. expose the failings of National, but also give people a reason/s to vote left.

    And relentless attack politics will turn off voters, especially left ones.

    • Karen 57.1

      I agree. If Dirty Politics had been even a month earlier it could have dented Key’s image. Instead he was able to get a boost from sacking Judith and there wasn’t enough time for the results of the SIS or SFO inquirIes to be completed. Because the election was so close opinion about Key’s honesty was never really challenged.

      The MoT in election week was a disaster for the left. KDC’s email reveal was never going to stand up to scrutiny, and it had the effect in many people’s eyes as putting the veracity of all the email evidence in Dirty Politics in doubt. The Five Eyes and GCSB reveal was important to political junkies, but for not for your average voter who thinks it is necessary to combat terrorism. Key actually won votes out of that. Six months ago it could have been useful.

    • Hanswurst 57.2

      I think the launch of Dirty Politics, and the MoT came too late. The result was to dent the Nats’ credibility somewhat, but the Lusk plan came into effect – it did not engage voters, especially of the left.

      I agree that it was too late to win the election for the left, but I don’t think that its coming earlier would have done so, either. That may sound pedantic, but I think it’s usefully pedantic. Coming before the election campaign, it would have been easier to bury it as a sideshow in the usual back-and-forth of political scandal allegations. John Key would not have been on the road and inextricably invested in fronting personally to the media in situations other than his regular press-conferences. It would very well have fallen from the headlines before the campaign, never have been associated too heavily with Key, and not have reached the consciousness of much of the public.

      Bringing it out in the election campaign has ensured that the propaganda strategies of the government are now a significant issue, and the prime minister is considered to be responsible for them. Any claim he makes that he doesn’t know what is going on can now be countered with, “There’s a book about it and we have video footage of your fronting questions about it every day for a couple of weeks”. Even the slightest association of a minister with attacks on a civil servant or member of the public will now automatically be “unwise” with the connotation that that minister must be on notice. That would very likely not have happened if the book had been released weeks earlier.

      It may not have won them the election, but with luck and the right strategy, the Left can hammer the issue and see the Right reduced to unelectable lame-duck status in very short order from here on in, hopefully ensuring that National are mortally afraid of using such tactics in future, and that the media will in any case see better sales mileage in attacking those tactics than abetting them.

  58. Seanexile 58

    And judging by this thread the original poster sure nailed point 3…

    How is it possible that when one has gotten the worst drubbing in a century people blame the media?
    Come out as Von Oben and states that the policies are right but they just need to be better understood?
    that present leadership is on the right track?

    Hello selfcheck we failed miserably.
    We failed because the average kiwi found John Key and National a much more appealing alternative than us.
    Yeah that’s right middle New Zealand likes John Key, find him a good leader who states he is centrist and who is a good captain of the ship called New Zealand. he is so much more preferred than our leader that it isn’t even funny.
    Also our policies, most important in this election was the economy. How many bright ideas did we put forward that made people think the economy wouldn’t be stable and secure?
    How many kiwis vote on whats best for their mortgage?
    At present we have low interest rates (for this country low) and John key is credited with keeping this steady. he takes every opportunity to point to balanced books and financial stability.
    Most voters appreciate that. they appreciate that a lot more than a re-regulation of a powermarket which brings untold insecurity to their mortgages and the nations finances.

    Auckland is soon 40% of this country. Look at the party votes in what is/will be labour most important market going forward and tell me that the party isn’t completely out of touch. We might win Mangere with an extra 3% but we are about to loose in the Labour strongholds of West Auckland and if they are lost it virtually guarantees that labour can never govern this country.
    How about a few key issues that resonate with the voters in these electorates? Do we have any real Auckland suburb winning policy?

    Seriously, point 7 and 8.
    if we don’t follow them we are dead as a political force in this country.
    And seriously if activists thinks we will gain from working with the greens or I/M then they are very out of sync with what the public thinks.
    Helen Clarke knew very well that going into bed with the greens would be punished by NZ voters and thus let them down when they least expected it. Helen Clarke was a successful Labour leader.

    • gobsmacked 58.1

      Judging by your comment, it looks like the “we” is rather misleading.

    • millsy 58.2

      What policies do you think Labour should drop/keep?

      Do you want to roll back environental regulations?

    • karol 58.3

      how do you know the “average Kiwi” voted? – lots didn’t.

    • Colonial Viper 58.4

      At present we have low interest rates (for this country low) and John key is credited with keeping this steady. he takes every opportunity to point to balanced books and financial stability.

      What balanced books? What financial stability?

      they appreciate that a lot more than a re-regulation of a powermarket which brings untold insecurity to their mortgages and the nations finances.

      WTF? How does NZ Power bring “insecurity” to household mortgages and the government budget???

    • Hanswurst 58.5

      Exhibit A:

      How is it possible that when one has gotten the worst drubbing in a century people blame the media?

      Exhibit B:

      We failed because the average kiwi found John Key and National a much more appealing alternative than us.
      Yeah that’s right middle New Zealand likes John Key, find him a good leader who states he is centrist and who is a good captain of the ship called New Zealand. he is so much more preferred than our leader that it isn’t even funny.

      I don’t think that anybody has disagreed with the content of Exhibit B. The suggestion is that the media are responsible for a large part of that. This has a number of components:

      1. Framing Key as the definitive political commentator by reporting Labour policies with headlines along the lines of “Labour policy a rabid mongrel cur – Key”. To make things worse, that would often be the very first mention of said policy.

      2. Failing to secure interviews with Key (and at times his ministers) to front controversial issues, and failing to point out at every turn that they were avoiding the soptlight.

      3. Failing to fill the vacuum created by (2) with high-profile and in-depth interviews with opposition spokespeople.

      4. Failing to draw the logical consequences of (2) and (3) by reporting the Government’s stance exclusively under headlines such as, “National’s policy a load of dingos’ kidneys – Cunliffe”. It would be interesting to see how long Key would maintain his aloofness from one-on-one interviews under such circumstances.

      5. Generally failing to hold Key to account on statements like “What we are seeing here is a left-wing conspiracy”, and, “Of course I talk to bloggers, just like the Labour Party will talk to bloggers on its side”. One could argue that their failure to elicit proper elucidation wasn’t for lack of trying. Regardless of whether the failure was deliberate or not, however, it is still squarely the journalists’ fault.

      6. Opinion columnists have talked up Key’s chances of winning in articles that are purportedly about his and his opponents’ personal leadership qualities. Being popular and winning are not a personal qualities, they are the results of promoting those personal qualities. There is nothing wrong with discussing prospects of victory, but it should at the very least be clearly demarcated from any discussion of personal qualities, if not in a separate column.

      I hope that helps you understand why people cite the media as significant independent contributors to Key’s – and by extension National’s – electoral success.

      • karol 58.5.1

        I questioned the use of the term “average Kiwi” in exhibit B.

        More people didn’t vote (either not on the roll, or on the roll and didn’t vote), than voted for National.

        Then you add on the people who voted for other parties. Most Kiwis didn’t vote for National.

        • Hanswurst 58.5.1.1

          Touché. I still think that the popularity of Key was ta big reason why many voted National, and that the media framing as above is a large contributor to that popularity.

  59. Sans Cle 59

    Are we not learning the strategy of Hooton and the likes? The one where he creates a smokescreen (questioning Cunliffe’s leadership, bringing up Shearer’s leadership again, getting the MSM to interview Labour leader contestants to publicly air their views on National Radio when last week NONE of these voices were heard). The one where they create a stir about how chaotic labour is etc etc etc……we know the narrative…..
    ……and we let Jason Ede sneak out the back door?

    Who is going to lead the opposition in these upcoming days?
    Who is going to be relentless until we get to the bottom of what happened with Ede/Slater/Collins?

    Whoever can keep focused on the integrity of our democratic institutions, press John Key until we get answers deserves true leadership status, no-one else.
    I have a feeling that will be Winston Peters or Norman/Turei.

    Meanwhile the boys will jostle for position, jostle for leadership, without thinking what damage that will do to the Labour party at this crucial time.

    • Olwyn 59.1

      Spot on, Sans Cle!!!

    • Anne 59.2

      Meanwhile the boys will jostle for position, jostle for leadership, without thinking what damage that will do to the Labour party at this crucial time.

      And it’s already started. The words that come to mind are unprintable – even here. 🙁

      • Colonial Viper 59.2.1

        Was it Trotter who said that these people would prefer to be in charge of a losing Labour rather than not be in charge of a winning Labour?

    • Sans Cle 59.3

      I switched my vote from Greens to Labour. Yes, insignificant in the whole scheme of things….but my rationale was to give Labour a convincing majority in new government (which I envisaged). I thought Greens would have been at least 5% higher. Alas, it didn’t happen.
      There is no way that Labour will get my swinging vote again, if they cannot:
      1) Get their PR and media sorted out (e.g. Surpress the individualistic and egoistic urge to become leader)
      2) Think about what was positive about this election, and build on that
      …..and there are lots of positives, if people stop wallowing in self pity
      e.g. New faces and energy: Jenny Salesa and her untiring and effective effort, enthusiasm and positivity…..old faces and unfailing loyal energy: the well structured grassroot volunteers who give unfailingly and loyally: the party doesn’t have to build that from scratch as IMP tried.
      3) The temporary flight to Labour from Maori…..they came back to Labour, they will rebuild and have their own voice again, but for now….they want to be with labour. How do we build strong coalitions to help both Maori to regroup while also building long lasting partnerships?
      4) acknowledge weaknesses: MMP is failing labour, how do we target electorates more efficiently and smartly?
      5) acknowledge how Cunliffe fared with little time in the job, with (as has become apparent) little support from Caucus.
      6) go for the jugular with National/Key’s weakness: they are corrupt, expose them. 60% of herald digipoll believed Kim Dotcom over Key….the Kim Dotcom who is now being vilified as ruiner of election (etc…blah blah blah). He is more credible than Key! Use that piece of public opinion!
      7) waken up, and stay positive!!!!

      There are many more positives, despite the loss. Find them and build on them. Otherwise Labour gives National a free pass in 2017, and further splinters the opposition.
      IMHO

      • Potato 59.3.1

        These are my thoughts exactly. A lot of people I spoke to had warmed to Cunliffe but his appeal didn’t show early enough. The attacks by MSM were obvious to us but too many people believe what they see there. The few who spoke truthfully are probably even more worried about speaking up now. Labour must learn to fight back while remaining positive. If they can’t get the message out through the MSM, they must do it by being visible in the community. End the infighting and build on their grassroots support.

  60. Observer (Tokoroa) 60

    Hi Venezia

    Thank you for reading my Comment.

    Let me also thank you for giving us a well written snapshot of the staffing conditions in a Rest Home and the way they voted in the election.

    National offered those staff nothing. At best, a possible very small tax cut somewhere in the future foggy distance.

    But the Staff and the Registered Nurses judged that to be far better than Labour’s offer of a Capital Gains Tax and a delayed Retirement Age Super.

    A $2 per hr raise as a sweetener sometime in the future is not a bird in the hand.

    Labour the party of pain. National the party of stability and joy.

    However Venezia (nice nickname), The Nationals got 61 seats and the Left overall got 56. Ref: Electoral Commission 21/9/2014. That relatively close result shows in terms of seats, nearly half of NZ voted Left. Encouraging! The Left is far from a lost cause.

    It is only in time of real Recession or War that you can take a policy of pain to a Democracy.

    • Colonial Viper 60.1

      Thanks for the insight into the thinking process.

      RNs get nothing immediately, from a $2/hr min wage rise anyway. Any increase they get off the back of that will be even further down the track.

    • aerobubble 60.2

      NZF is a center right party. Labour got 24% Greens 10%,

      Nat 48%+Con 4.5% + NZF 9% +ACT .6% + NF= 63%

      i.e. two in every three voters.

      Labour shrank .

      Sure 44% were against John Key, but left-right, the nations right leaning. Or you could argue that Key is leaning left and bringing on right leaning left voters.

  61. McFlock 61

    I wonder what the effect of the aussie alleged-terror raids was on the votes on election day. Just as a rumination exercise.

    The KDC thing had made security and security services an election issue (even if it was over-egged or spun as such), and having that happen in our neighbourhood possibly swung a couple of percent. Which would have made all the difference.

    Other than that, it seems a load of electorates voter labour candidates but nat on the party vote, so I reckon that is a major point to address. It’s no good voting for a labour electorate MP if you give them the power to do fuckall.

    • chris73 61.1

      I wonder what the effect of the aussie alleged-terror raids was on the votes on election day. Just as a rumination exercise.

      – I’d suggest 2/5 of sfa

      The KDC thing had made security and security services an election issue (even if it was over-egged or spun as such), and having that happen in our neighbourhood possibly swung a couple of percent. Which would have made all the difference.

      – the simple truth is this: KDC would have been much better advised to give 1.5 million to the Greens and 3 million to Labour instead I could imagine Hones and Lailas eyeballs sticking out like dogs balls at the thought of all that lolly and greed got the better of them

      Other than that, it seems a load of electorates voter labour candidates but nat on the party vote, so I reckon that is a major point to address. It’s no good voting for a labour electorate MP if you give them the power to do fuckall.

      – I agree

  62. Observer (Tokoroa) 62

    Hello
    Colonial Viper

    I enjoy reading your valuable posts too. I take your point with regard to RNs.

    However, only lifting the minimum wage might lead to an imbalance in salary relativities. Do you think so?

    To use Reduction To Absurdity, a few years of lifting the Min Wage while not raising the hrly rate of Nurses, could overtake the salary amount of a Professional Nurse.

    However, Nurses like Teachers are kept on rather low salaries, even though their work is very important and highly demanding. They also get gratuitous abuse from too much of the community. They get next to no acknowledgement from Conservative politicians. The present Government has only a negative regard for teachers.

    It also appears to have only a negative regard for Old Age staff.

    Conservatives share primarily with the already wealthy. The Equalists (Center Left) realise that the health of a nation depends on wage and opportunity parity.

    That Colonial Viper in my view, is the Difference between the Wrong and the Left.

    .

    • Colonial Viper 62.1

      To raise the minimum wage significantly without the kind of opposition/loss of wage relativity you are describing, there must also be a definite and ongoing upward drift in other wages.

      Our politicians don’t understand how this can be achieved, so what you raise is certainly a problem to be considered.

  63. sabine 63

    did anyone look at the polling data in regards to ethnicity?

    and I don’t mean maori, pasifica or european

    I would like to know if the chinese permanent residence/new nz’lers voted and for whom and why.
    same for pakistanis, south africans, africans, afghanis, indian, etc etc etc.

    we are talking about politics in terms of those that grew up with a labour movement. what about the ones that did not.

    who would they vote for? Anyone know?

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