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Looking up

Written By: - Date published: 8:55 pm, May 29th, 2013 - 138 comments
Categories: polls - Tags:

You can get all excited over every poll you see from people who poll a handful of times a year. You can try to read meaning into every bump and dip to fit your narrative, even if the ‘movements’ are just statistical noise. Or you can look at the trends. Here’s the trend after tonight’s Roy Morgan.

roy morgans to May 2013roy morgans to May 2013


138 comments on “Looking up”

  1. infused 1

    Two posts on polls in one day… crikey.

  2. Tiger Mountain 2

    And you can also admit that approximately 40% of our fellow voting kiwis are dark, sadistic, selfish, unpleasant dirty filthy tory aspirational bastards.

    The big job for the next few months is to be more like Mana, unite all who can be united, engage the disengaged and get the non vote out. Mana and the smaller hard left parties know that politics is only partly about parliament. Direct action? The right sure don’t like it up ’em as recent legislation put through under urgency illustrates. So that is what they need more of–direct action.

    • Agreed but probably more like 35%.

      And we do have to get everyone to vote. Some within the Labour party think we just have to persuade some National voters to change allegiance through self interest but for me I would prefer we just wow everyone with a coherent progressive vision.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        And you can also admit that approximately 40% of our fellow voting kiwis are dark, sadistic, selfish, unpleasant dirty filthy tory aspirational bastards.

        Nah only 15%-20% properly nasty, once you count in the non-vote, and also all those who simply vote for that “nice man John Key”, and also for “that nice man Bill English who really looks after us farming types”.

        Also, bear in mind that large chunks of the politically active “Left” in NZ have no fucking idea of the country or it’s people outside of the space between Boulcott St and Lambton Quay

        It’s pretty hard to represent the 95% against the 5% when you despise half of them and they can tell.

      • AmaKiwi 2.1.2

        “Some within the Labour party think we just have to persuade some National voters to change allegiance”

        That NEVER won and election.

        You win by getting your voters to the polls.
        You lose when your voters stay at home.

        That is basic political studies 101. End of story.

        • Colonial Viper

          Beltway Labour is full of pol sci types. What could go wrong.

          • AmaKiwi

            Maybe they studied pol sci in NZ instead of someplace where people know how to fight dirty.

            In addition to my university studies I trained at the same community organization Obama did. If you can play the game in Chicago, you can play it anywhere.

            • Colonial Viper


              We should have a chat in due course

              • AmaKiwi

                I would be happy to make you acquaintance but have no idea how. I doubt I will go to the conference in CHC.

                The key to winning support (and what Obama did) is to listen to what people want. Top-down “we have the answers” does not work. If you try to get power in order to implement your own agenda, you won’t last long. If you consistently do what people tell you THEY want, you can last a long time. Surprise! What THEY want is usually not much different from what YOU want. But if it comes from them, they own it.

                • Colonial Viper

                  I’ll see what I can arrange.

                  • AmaKiwi

                    Looking forward to it.

                    • King Kong

                      The Standard, helping lefties meet and fall in love since 2000 and something.

                      I can only imagine the problems you are going to have on your first date when, true to your ideologies, you try and force the rest of the patrons in the restaurant to pay for your meals.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      If you can’t drink their booze, take their money and break your promises, then you probably shouldn’t be in politics.

                    • King Kong

                      Isn’t that written on a plaque above the door at Labour HQ?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Actually its bankers advice but yes it works for politicians too

                    • prism

                      Don’t feel left out. There is always a chance for even big, hairy, not very bright animals. Just hang around with others the same as you.

                    • CV/AK: If you need any website help to get this happening, let me know. 🙂

                • Tiger Mountain

                  Yeah like drones blasting the shit out of people, keeping Guantnamo going and zapping Bin Laden certainaly saved Obama’s electoral butt.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Now it turns out that the Brits have been running a secret prison in Afghanistan with over 90 Afghan inmates held without charge, some for over a year.

          • Stephen

            For what it’s worth, winning over Nat voters is not the strategy I heard outlined by senior people at the regional conference in Chch a few weeks ago. Rather, it was what Amakiwi just said.

      • Chrissie Small 2.1.3

        I agree totally, as I posted on Clare Currans wall…The best thing we can all do is get everyone ready to vote come this next election…all those that failed to vote last time as a protest against the choices need to get some incentive to cast their votes! This is about losing our sovereignty, our rights as people of this country and the potential of losing our environment to oil mining for starters! This Tory Govt is doing what it wants with the help of Peter Dunne, the pretender JOhn Banks and the Maori Party! So if anyone should be targeted it’s those electorates these MP’s are supposed to represent should be targeted strongly to get them voted out! These MP’s are a disgrace to this country for allowing these bills to be passed! Also Labour needs to get on top of this TTPA thing and halt this agreement because the people are waking up to what this will really mean for everyone in this country, and who it will really benefit !

    • weka 2.2

      “And you can also admit that approximately 40% of our fellow voting kiwis are dark, sadistic, selfish, unpleasant dirty filthy tory aspirational bastards.”

      I don’t think so. Some people vote on the right out of habit, or because they are old style conservative. The old style conservatives might not even like what is going on, but can’t bring themselves to vote Labour or NZF. This may make them weak or cowardly or selfish, but it doesn’t make them the evil people you describe. I think it helps to remember that many people voting on the right are people we must engage with and find ways of working with rather than pillorying. There are of course people who vote on the right who fit your description.

      I agree with your strategies though.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        The old school Tories hate asset sales with a passion…and they hate selling our farmland to the Chinese with a passion…and they hate fit young people sitting on their asses in front of a Playstation all day collecting the dole with a passion (and so they should)…interestingly gay marriage doesn’t always necessarily seem to bother them that much. Just don’t ask them about specifics. Out on the farm you see all kinds of crazy shit…

  3. tamati 3

    Yup, looks like this one will go down to the wire. Looks like it will come down to one man,

    Winston Raymond Peters

    • weka 3.1

      Or NZF won’t make the 5% threshold and/or the GP will get enough party votes to make Peters irrelevant.

      • tamati 3.1.1

        If he doesn’t make the 5% it’s likely there will be around 4%-6% of wasted vote, meaning the Nats or Labour/Green could potentially rule with a combined vote of around 45%, and little help from some minor parties.

        • Brett Dale

          Peters will find a way to get 5%, he always does, I wouldnt vote for him, but good on him, the media does their best to say, hes done and out, but he always seems to get there in the end.

          • emergency mike

            Indeed I’ve heard political commentators on election night wrongly pronounce the end of Winston for as long as I can remember.

            • lprent

              They do seem to have a thing about that, and they’re so consistent that he has been able to turn it to his electoral advantage.

    • Colonial Viper 3.2

      I’m going to put real money on this call.

  4. cardassian 4

    This seems like a good poll result and part of an encouraging trend. Now we just need Mana to grow it’s vote to around the 2% mark so they can start to pull in other members.

    • tamati 4.1

      Would actually be better for the left if Mana focused on winning electorate seats and secretly told their supporters to party vote for Labour.

      • cardassian 4.1.1

        I think it’s really hard for smaller parties to win a lot of electorate seats. However if Mana could increase the seats they hold in the house it would enable them more say in a left wing coalition.

      • marty mars 4.1.2

        The left need Mana as a strong player in the next parliament to keep labour honest – as in not allowing them to slip down the slippery slide of expediency and pragmatism which will be an ever-present danger if a Labour/Greens coalition get past the line.

        • karol

          Exactly. Winning the treasury benches is only the first battle.

          • Colonial Viper

            You listen to the way some people talk, like its the only battle. That makes me worried about their intentions after occupation.

        • peterlepaysan

          Keeping Labour honest is the hard bit while a caucus cabal controls everything.

          It is small wonder that voters no show and members do not renew.

          What the hell does Labour offer to an economically disenfranchised electorate?

          San Fairy Ann.

      • just saying 4.1.3

        This Mana voter certainly wont be party voting Labour. The size of the party vote will determine whether Hone takes others into parliament with him.
        Do you trust Labour?

        edited and coffee adminstered

        • fatty

          me too, in fact I’ll do the opposite of giving a party vote to Labour…last election I gave my MP vote to Labour and party vote to Mana. (no Mana candidate and a Green tick was pointless)

          • marty mars

            Yep double Mana vote for me – the movement is building and growing and every little bit of support is important and needed.

        • weka

          “The size of the party vote will determine whether Hone takes others into parliament with him.”

          Doesn’t that depend on how many MPs get electorate seats?

    • Temana wont grow its vote, kiwis aren’t impressed by people who spit on the floor.

      • cardassian 4.2.1

        Some more good publicity around sympathetic issues such as feeding children could see people’s view on Mana change imo. I already know a few people that are not Mana voters but are liking what they see from them.

        • millsy

          Mana’s future depends on it getting second place in the Ikiroa-Rawhiti by-election. (Labour will win the seat, the real battle is for second).

          • Clockie

            Why do we hear so little about the obvious ready made constituency for Mana? The (mainly) young, poor, under employed or unemployed. The dispossessed or disillusioned non-voters. I’ve been a bit surprised that Mana doesn’t seem to have connected with these people in large numbers yet. Is it because they’re extremely hard to reach?

            • Tiger Mountain

              Partly, Mana has done ok in pockets, the GI state house cleansing, Te Tai Tokerau organising young people, Petrobras action, building an internal structure on limited resources. Feed the kids. Distorted by ShonKey but in the public frame now.

              John Minto for Auckland Mayor will help raise the profile there for Mana, another two MPs in ’14 and they will be away. All sorts of constituentcies are out there, when you are disengaged is politicial organisation at the top of your daily to do list?

              My 40% figure at top of thread was qualified with the word “voter”. Sure you cannot write everyone off, some people will support some things against type, left and right, but the post colonial rural based history of this place has given rise to roughly 40%/40% conservative/progressive and 20% odds and sodds. ’51 waterfront lockout, ’81 Tour, ”80s no nukes, ’80s run with Rogder, the political divide is provable, but in objective terms the 5%/95% or 1%/99% divide is a relevant more modern measure.

              • Clockie

                Yeah well I would have said that Mana are going to take stuff all votes from people who’re already committed to Labour or Green. They might finish disemboweling the Maori party but they’ll be fighting over that carcass with Labour and there isn’t enough meat on the bones to build a major political force on Labours left. Why not concentrate on evangelizing among the supposed 800,000 who didn’t vote last time? A lot of those are precisely the type of people who Mana says it’s fighting for. The prospective voters don’t need to organize anything much if they don’t want to. They are in exactly the same position as the people who started and supported the Labour party originally and they managed to get out and vote. The Mana party already exists. All they need to do initially is give half an hour on polling day.

                • weka

                  How do you know that Mana aren’t already doing this?

                  What the left really needs is an organisation dedicated to mobilising the non-voters next year, and presenting them with 3 choices (Mana, GP, Labour), and clear, easily accessible explanations on why voting on the left is important. The three parties can still take their own actions, but we need the non-voters mobilised in a pan-left kind of way, rather than a party political way (although I do agree that getting them to vote Mana would be awesome).

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Vote Labour, Vote Centre

                    • Clockie

                      precisely, but aren’t you a labour man? 🙂

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Through and through, but the party that I support only exists as an almost forgotten shadow in idealistic left wing minds nowadays

                  • Clockie

                    Well, judging by the polling there’s no evidence of it yet. I realise a lot of the young probably aren’t reached by pollsters and may not respond to them even then. The acid test will be the next election I suppose. I don’t know how you reach the mainly young, often brown, disengaged / angry / etc. etc. potential voter. I would have said Mana was the natural “home” for many of them, but what do I know? I don’t think you’ll reach them with TV advertising (expensive) or hoardings etc. I would have thought a personal approach from people they identify with and respect is about the only real way to do it. Slow, time consuming, grunt work. It’s how the original Labour Party and Union movement were built.

                    • Well that is exactly what the Mana Movement is doing – kanohi ki te kanohi – face to face – as you say, slow, time consuming grunt work that takes a while to get results, but they will come.

                    • Clockie

                      Well, good luck with it. I’d love to see them get at least 5% next election. A lot more would be good but Rome wasn’t built in a weekend..

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Mana need only get 2.5% next election

                    • weka

                      How many seats are you thinking that gets them?

      • fatty 4.2.2

        Temana wont grow its vote, kiwis aren’t impressed by people who spit on the floor.

        Nice promotion of your b-grade blog. It worked, I just soiled my eyes with your ignorance, it’ll never happen again.

        Most people I know found Hone’s spit to be the best response to Key’s weet-bix policy…the only thing more appropriate would be to vomit

  5. millsy 5

    It still doesnt look good for Labour.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      When you read the poll results, make sure you tilt your head to one side, close your left eye, and squint a bit with your right eye, while saying three hail mary’s.

      It won’t help much, but the dizziness will distract you from that fact.

  6. I am sure that despite this poll National will shrug it off and their hardcore supporters will continue to live on Planet Key, playing golf, and treading all over the worst off.

    • Winston Smith 6.1

      Its a good result for National because it means Shearer stays as leader…

      Who do you think worries National more: Shearer, Robertson or Cunliffe?

    • Lanthanide 6.2

      For some reason the MSM hardly ever reports on Roy Morgan. Not sure why, since the various outlets will often report on their competitors poll results, so it shouldn’t be some sort of competition thing.

      • lprent 6.2.1

        Unusually I’d recommend reading this weeks listener. There is an article and editorial about the pack effect of the parliamentary and political journalists. I think that they really don’t like outside organisations disrupting their combined storylines.

        I’d link to it, but it is almost certainly behind a paywall.

        • prism

          Parliament, political parties and Groupthink. This could be worth studying in an effort to try and understand these strange birds (pollies) and indeed the way we are influenced by our own group, or not. Wikipedia has this to say –

          Loyalty to the group requires individuals to avoid raising controversial issues or alternative solutions, and there is loss of individual creativity, uniqueness and independent thinking. The dysfunctional group dynamics of the “ingroup” produces an “illusion of invulnerability” (an inflated certainty that the right decision has been made). Thus the “ingroup” significantly overrates their own abilities in decision-making, and significantly underrates the abilities of their opponents (the “outgroup”).

          Then there is – Mnemonic encoding? More fodder for the brain.
          Sociocognitive theory
          According to a new theory many of the basic characteristics of groupthink – e.g., strong cohesion, indulgent atmosphere, and exclusive ethos – are the result of a special kind of mnemonic encoding (Tsoukalas, 2007). Members of tightly knit groups have a tendency to represent significant aspects of their community as episodic memories and this has a predictable influence on their group behavior and collective ideology.


          • Colonial Viper

            TED: dangerous memes

          • Anne

            The dysfunctional group dynamics of the “ingroup” produces an “illusion of invulnerability” (an inflated certainty that the right decision has been made). Thus the “ingroup” significantly overrates their own abilities in decision-making, and significantly underrates the abilities of their opponents (the “outgroup”).

            Oh wow, I can think of a first class example of exactly that happening in the past couple of years. 🙂

        • Naturesong

          This kind of groupthink is pretty pervasive in many industries.
          The team I work with is pretty vigilant as we tend to carry the can at the end of the day.
          We affectionately refer to the folks that fall prey as ‘nodding dogs’.
          Confirmation bias is the other one.
          They’re insidious in that they aren’t one off errors that can be corrected. But will lead an entire project and all the resources behind it down the garden path.

        • karol

          Actually, it’s not the latest edition of the Listener, so no longer behind a pay wall.

          Editorial extract:

          It’s now possible to argue not only that the power in the relationship between politicians and journalists lies with the media (a point made by David Lange as long ago as 1994), but that the political agenda is increasingly driven by the demands of an intensely competitive news industry hungry for drama and sensation. This may be only marginally better for democracy than the carefully controlled drip-feeding of information that characterised government in the 1950s and 60s.
          The new style of political journalism is insistent, confrontational and highly opinionated. Digital platforms such as Twitter and news websites demand to be replenished constantly. The political controversy du jour becomes a “breaking” story, unfolding hour by hour and requiring regular comment from whichever politician happens to be at its epicentre….

          Paradoxically, although the pressure to beat the competition has never been greater, the parliamentary press gallery is more inclined than ever to hunt as a pack, thereby ensuring no journalist is privy to revelations or quotes not available to others. In such situations, competitive advantage lies in the way the story is presented; hence the increasing tendency for journalists to embellish reportage with personal opinion and even distasteful hyperbole, as in the case of TV3’s reference to former National MP Aaron Gilmore as “the most unwelcome dinner guest since Hannibal Lecter”.

          Thanks for the tip.

  7. tsmithfield 7

    Thank God for Roy Morgan.

    Sheep is probably safe again now, which is a huge positive for us righties. 🙂

    • Clockie 7.1

      How do you like those trend-lines mate?

      • King Kong 7.1.1

        Everyone knows that with the economy starting to perform well, Shearer being an unelectable muppet and some very fruity rumours doing the rounds about Russell Normans private life, National are a shoe in.

        • Clockie

          Lets not get ahead of ourselves. Just watch the trend over the next year and see how we go. I presume that as a willing spreader of “fruity rumours ” you’ll be making a public apology when they turn out to be so much horse shit? Or is dirty play like that just fair game as far as you’re concerned?

      • tsmithfield 7.1.2

        Personally, I wouldn’t use a three month rolling average for this type of data, because it taps too much into historical data, and thus underemphasises what is going on at the current time.

        I would tend to use a trendline based on a weighted average which picks up more of what is happening in the current environment. Or, rely more on the Curia average of all polls.

        Anyway, if it helps keep Sheep in the job, then analysing it in the most favourable way for that purpose is cool by me, so I have no problems with the way it has been analysed above.

        • lprent

          Problem is that if you use a weighted average it tends to overemphasize the recent outliers. In the case of Roy Morgan, there can be a 4% difference between any two polls and a 5-6% variation between any three polls that appears to as much as anything else to be simple sampling variation – look at the graph. If what you are interested in is trends then weighting towards recent just retains the jitter and provides little useful information on the trend.

          When used across different polls, it tends to make for a systematic bias towards recent extremes. Which bearing in mind the massive spread and systematic bias between the polls means that having a set of polls clustered close together over emphasises the systematic bias.

          Like 4 polls immediately after a budget. If you have three polls that systematically overestimate National vote and one that is close to accurate coming together, then the Curia technique will show high National support with the higher systematic biases drowning out the poll that is less inaccurate.

          Bearing in mind the amount of work that Curia does for National, that is probably why they use it. With the media organisations doing polls after announcements for their news headline value, you can expect that the technique will always show “boost” in support for National immediately after an announcement. Conversely, because all of the polls are less inaccurate on Labour, you’ll find that there is “no response” to Labours announcements.

          This isn’t exactly rocket science.

          Rolling averages over a sufficient period of time on a single poll that is taken frequently is probably the best way to look at trends. Provided they don’t change their sampling procedures radically, you should get a pretty good indication of the underlying trends. The only time that it is likely to get inaccurate is in three months prior to and often just after the election when there is quite a lot of shifting in opinion.

          • tsmithfield

            After consideration, I absolutely agree with you.

            And I think that Roy Morgan is the real deal and all the other polls are crap and should be ignored.

            Also, all the talk I have seen here dissing David Shearer is totally misguided. He is a fantastic leader; a “David Lange” in “sheeps” clothing so to speak. He is just starting to find his feet and is going to give Key a real towelling when it comes to debates in election year.

            I don’t think that a lot of bloggers here have enough faith or foresight to wait until the real Shearer strides forth. Kia Kaha David Shearer.

            • Colonial Viper

              Also, all the talk I have seen here dissing David Shearer is totally misguided. He is a fantastic leader; a “David Lange” in “sheeps” clothing so to speak.

              I agree totally but was going to say that Shearer is actually more a “Patton in sheeps clothing” or a “John F Kennedy in sheeps clothing”

              I don’t think that a lot of bloggers here have enough faith or foresight to wait until the real Shearer strides forth. Kia Kaha David Shearer.

              How my heart will go all aflutter when the “Real” David Shearer decides to “stride forth”.

              • tsmithfield

                Keep the faith, bro. It might take three or four election cycles, but the real Shearer will stride forth.

            • lprent

              Has the inadvertent comedy ceased? Can I get out from my inadvertent barricade of work?

              But I did rather notice that you didn’t address any point in my comment. In particular why weighting on the most recent bounces and falls in polls from different companies done with varying techniques and levels of inaccuracy will simply make the regression line jiggle like your jowls as you scattergun spittle around the room.

              • tsmithfield

                I think a rolling average of three months data gives a very clear picture of what has happened, but isn’t very useful for predicting what will happen. That is because it could take another three months to show up any changes happening at the moment.

                There is no reason that the data couldn’t be weighted so that further back into history the length of the average increases. Therefore, the older data would show longer term trends displaying what has happened previously, whereas the shorter term data would have much shorter average periods. Therefore the shorter term data would be more volatile, but would show the effect of relevant information such as the budget for instance.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  I think that’s lovely; I wish you every success putting it into practice.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    It’s fairly easy really…ts is correct if one wanted to make the moving average more responsive, one simply weights more recent periods more highly than periods further back.

                    An example is that of an exponentially weighted moving average


                    • tsmithfield

                      Yeah, an exponential moving average is one option. There are others as well. In the field of finances/stock markets etc these sorts of things are some of the technical indicators available. The aim is the same. That is to show both the longer term trends in the historical data while alerting to relevant fluctuations in the current data.

                      As it stands, a three month rolling average is much more to do with displaying historical trends rather than predicting new ones.

    • Jimmie 7.2

      Well yeah – a little known secret is that the reason why the Roy Morgan poll jumps around like dogs balls is because Roy Morgan is a undercover member of the VRWC.

      He issues poll results according to instructions from VRWC HQ.

      This weeks results were favorable to Labour as there was concern that after the previous three polls the Labour caucus may have plucked up enough courage to question Shearer’s leadership.

      This would never do as Shearer (another undercover VRWC operative) was appointed to his position by the VRWC specifically to keep Labour in opposition until post 2014.

      Confirmation of this will be shown in the next Roy Morgan poll due in June which will shown another swing with the Nats bouncing back to above 45%.
      However HQ is not concerned about this as they believe that the average Labour activist has an attention span measured in nano seconds so they will not remember the other appalling poll results from May.

  8. King Kong 8

    I bet Cunliffe couldn’t have turned the polls around like that in just over 48 hours.

    Powerful stuff from Shearer.

  9. Chooky 9

    Disagree with Karol, that it is not the leader but the team that counts…

    There are a lot of swinging or non-committed voters out there who like to watch boxing… or soccer or rugby..or action movies or jousting or shoot em ups….a general Election is just more entertainment ( hence the popularity of Winston)

    There are also a lot of media savvy young people….They will vote for a WINNER on television and in the general MSM, who looks like a winner and can articulate their position forcefully…

    The leader sets the impression out there (unless you are a real political party hack animal and believe in Pollyanna and charity )

    No one likes to be associated with a loser, least of all an incompetent loser (from an incompetent party who cant elect a winner) ….And least of all if you are on the bones of your backside yourself. What you want is hope. You want to be on the winning side.

    PS. How are the networked teams going to look under Shearer?…not quite so shiney…a bit tired and fudgey …..Will they want him as leader if they get most of the votes?

    • KJT 9.1

      Rightly or wrongly the appearance of competence is important.

      Key is doing a lot better job of appearing competent, than Shearer.


      • peterlepaysan 9.1.1

        Actually Shonkey looked delightfully tired and woebegone on TV3 2nite when answering questions about Doug Graham being a Sir.

  10. Chooky 10

    The old Labour Party leaders, soap box orators and later radio broadcasters, knew the importance of jousting, gladiator sports , grassroots instincts, thinking nimbly on your feet , the ability to sway the crowd, rhetoric, presence, mana etc.

    Who has this in the Labour Party?

    Why ignore great Labour Party traditions?

    Mish mash and hope simply wont do!

  11. Michael 11

    My observations concur with Stephen’s above: Labour’s “strategy” seems to be to just drift along and wait until a few of the fickle middle class get sick of Key. That way, Labour can just cruise back into office without having to make anything more than a few cosmetic changes. Life in NZ will continue in the way it has since 1984 or so, with the 5 percenters getting much richer, the next 5-15 percenters getting a little richer, the next 60 percenters staying the same or getting slightly poorer, and the bottom 20 percenters getting much poorer. Meanwhile, our economic productivity, competitiveness and innovation keep stagnating, while the environment degrades. Is everyone happy with that or is it time to reset the machinery of government by inserting some values apart from money?

    • Macro 11.1

      ” Labour’s “strategy” seems to be…….. Meanwhile, our economic productivity, competitiveness and innovation keep stagnating, while the environment degrades.”
      That seems to be the way of it unfortunately 🙁

  12. Chooky 12

    Us chooks know about the future of lovely sheepies….after 3 or 4 election cycles ( generally less than one season in the paddocks)….Heaven help us they are long gone to the slaughter house , even if they are disguised/reincarnated David Langes, Pattons or JFKs..(sqwark sqwark!…just about fell off my perch at that one…) However pet sheep may be another matter!…they can survive a long time…..

    As for “powerful stuff from Shearer”…..sounds like a ferret talking

  13. Keep going on about Shearer you plonkers .You are not Labour people and I sick of listining too you. Go back and look at the way National has in just four years destroyed our great egalitarian country where the majority of our people cared about each other. Since when did Socialists only depend on a leader . The succesfull political party is the one that has a great team and ,in MMP. who can work well with a supporting party. .Labour is doing this well and Labour and the Greens are now seen as excellent partners. Why else would the Nats try their hardest to cause disharmony between the two parties. Now Labour must start to get the none voter to get out and vote for the excellent policies like cheaper power , affordable housing and a living wage, and that is just a start ,

    One thing for sure when politicians start bring up, the old Communist bugbear then one should realise that they are very worried .
    Im predicting Sir John Key will be living in one off his mansions .after 2014.

    • mac1 13.1

      +1 The Pink Postman. Keep delivering messages like this!

    • Colonial Viper 13.2

      Go back and look at the way National has in just four years destroyed our great egalitarian country

      No, it’s been a 30 year process, not a 4 year process, and for half of that time there was a Labour Government.

      • weka 13.2.1

        Or pseudo-Labour government.

        • Colonial Viper

          yeah. I understand The Pink Postman’s mindset.

          To be blunt: the Labour Party that he thinks he is supporting in his minds eye, it’s socialist values, working class beliefs, advocacy for labour and union rights, etc. doesn’t actually exist in Wellington any more.

  14. Chooky 14

    You are right!….. Havent been a Labour voter since Labour unleashed Roger Douglas….despite admiring Helen Clark. She was one of the best assets Labour ever had , but half the Left didnt know it …and joined with the Right wanna-be male pack, in hounding her like a pack of dogs….

    Labour is a sick man….look at the polls. Labour should be romping home with what National is doing to “our great egalitarian country”!.

    • McFlock 14.1

      National is the sick man of NZ politics – no friends, and an electorate becoming steadily more alienated.

      The old left monolith is now in three or four pieces, but the old tory monolith is still strapped together. This is a strength for the left, and a tory weakness.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.1

        There’s a socially liberal but economically centrist/capitalist Labour party, a moderately left wing Green Party, and a very small serious left Mana party.

        • McFlock

          Close enough.

          And a tory party with two trace-element hangers-on (one of them being a hopeful fundie vanity project).

          And in as pebbles between the two blocs we have one mercenary electorate MP, Winston1, and a narrow-focus Maori Party.

  15. Chooky 15

    Agreed the old Left monolith is now in three or four pieces….and this possibly gives it strength

    ….But the ‘Left’ combined is still not making enough traction in the polls against Nationals onslaught..why not?

    And it doesnt let Labour, as largest group on the Left, off the coalition leadership/flagship hook..there are still a lot of undecided, or non-voting , or traditional Labour supporters voting John Key( because he is a winner)..Labour is dragging the chain and trying to coast in on the tails of the rest of the Leftish parties

    There is a question that no doubt National is saving up for the Election TV debates….so it might as well be aired again now…It wont be forgotten that is for sure!…..How can you forget about a New York bank account with about $50,000…..when the people you are trying to represent are struggling? It may be very innocent ….but there seems to be some sort of disconnect….and it aint a good brand image for Labour.

    Sorry to be such a surly chook

    • McFlock 15.1

      But the ‘Left’ combined is still not making enough traction in the polls against Nationals onslaught

      What would you regard as “enough traction”? The only poll with analysable trends is showing solid improvement, and the rabidly pro-tory poll snapshots (as in showing >50% national support for all of 2011, and let’s not forget the old “Banks and Brown too close to call” polls from the supermayor race) are only giving National narrow leads.

      I’d love the left parties to do things slightly differently, and so would you I suspect, but I’m also sure that we wouldn’t agree entirely on exactly what should be done differently.

      As for the bank account, the solution is in the way it was handled – Key forgets/hasn’t read/is clueless about everything from phone calls to powerpoint shows to signing government documents (limo deals anyone?), and needs to be dragged kicking and screaming to admit that he made an untrue statement to the House. At least Shearer came clean about the mistake as soon as he discovered it.

      • Colonial Viper 15.1.1

        Oh I agree McFlock, there’s nothing to see here as Labour is being strongly led, they are meeting almost every reasonable expectation, and are right on track for victory in 2014.

      • Vagabundo 15.1.2

        “At least Shearer came clean about the mistake as soon as he discovered it.”
        Truth. The other thing to note is that it didn’t affect his numbers at all, whereas National’s numbers have steadily declined during Key’s repeated brainfades. That he forgot to declare his UN bank account for ages is obviously not an ideal situation, but Shearer handled it as well as anyone could reasonably be expected to.

        • Colonial Viper

          How much money was forgotten in that bank account?

          • McFlock

            Only you and Farrar care.

            • Colonial Viper

              You don’t care whether the sum was $50,000 or $500,000? It might make a difference to your claim that the bank account was simply “forgotten”.

              • McFlock


                Don’t know, don’t care.

                Hell, if I was interested in going through the pecuniary interest records and demanding beyond-spec verification via private tax records and so on, I’d be looking at key, blinglish and dunne way sooner than anyone on the other side of the house.

                But whatever rocks your boat, I guess.

                • Colonial Viper

                  You don’t think that having $50,000 vs having $500,000 in the account speaks directly to the credibility of your assertion that the funds were simply overlooked?

                  • McFlock

                    Nope, not really. He’s an mp. They ain’t poor. It’s not like he needs to bottom out all his accounts every pay cycle, at a guess.

                    The better indicator would be whether he used it regularly, or not touched it in ten years. But then that’s not as interesting as an american-style “show us your tax return” attack. Do you want to see shearers birth certificate, too?

                    • weka

                      If being able to forget $500,000 is a capacity of MPs, they’re getting paid too much.

                    • McFlock

                      If being able to forget $500,000 is a capacity of MPs, they’re getting paid too much

                      I’d link parliamentary salaries to a single-digit multiple of the unenployment benefit, personally. But that’s another debate.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      If being able to forget $500,000 is a capacity of MPs, they’re getting paid too much.

                      Worth keeping in mind that the money in the New York account had nothing to do with his NZ earnings as an MP.

                    • weka

                      True CV, but I’m guessing that McFlock’s point was that because as an MP he earns so much more than he needs, he can easily ‘forget’ about all this money (that he got elsewhere) sitting somewhere else. I disagree of course.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, there’s no motive for the “intentional lie then a change of mind after several years” scenario.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      No doubt someone else was about to release the information first.

                    • McFlock

                      “No doubt”?

                      Then why didn’t these supposed whistle-blowers say that the only reason he fronted up was because he got caught?

                      And if these unknown folk knew the account was more than $50k, then they also know the actual amount and could still have released that. Especially if it was your half mill guess.

                      And if someone was going to release it so he had to preempt it, they would have given gower teasers like gilmore and his mbie emails.

                      Nice fantasy edifice you’re building.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Sure because reporting the bank account to the IRD for several years in a row but overlooking it’s disclosure to Parliament at the same time is more likely.

                    • McFlock

                      Different forms with different criteria? Possible reason, especially if his accountant did one but not the other.

                      What possible reason does he have for lying on the register about the existence of a bank account? No motive that I can see.

                  • Vagabundo

                    Not as much as repeatedly lying about the circumstances in which an old school chum is appointed the most senior position in a spying agency that has systematically flouted the law.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    You guys have convinced me. Rich people forget this kind of small change all the time. It’s not that important to know whether it was $50K that was “overlooked” or $500K, so let’s go ahead and give Shearer a pass on this.

                    BTW I figure through his banking mates Shonkey will already know all the details of that bank account that there is to know.

                    • McFlock

                      Actually, you’ve convinced me. Shearer intentionally falsified the interests form for four years and then changed his mind one day and issued a correction. /sarc

                      Funnily enough, why this episode tends to leave me quite relaxed about shearer isn’t that he fucked up a form, but that he actually fronted up quickly and took responsibility for his error. Unlike an infantile prime minister we all know and love.

  16. cv why do you even care about the amount of money? The damage is done and the “he’s a liar” line cannot be used when we get around to the campaign – job done for the righties, of course the “he’s a bigger liar” line could be used but that would be a vain useless effort. The amount is irrelevant – no one cares except for righties wanting to stick more shit on shearer – but they don’t really care about him they want to fuck any apparent left wing offering. McFlock is correct on this one imo.

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