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Mood of the Boardroom: National is toast

Written By: - Date published: 11:07 am, September 28th, 2020 - 45 comments
Categories: business, grant robertson, national, paul goldsmith - Tags:

The NZ Herald Mood of the Boardroom finance election debate should be for National what it is like attending a living wage campaign meeting for Labour.  They should be at home and the participants should be solidly behind them.

So the Mood of the Boardroom meeting just held should have rang alarm bells for National.

It featured Grant Robertson against Paul Goldsmith and call me biased but it was a one sided beating the likes of which I have not seen before.

During the debate Herald Editor Shayne Currie said this:

Paul I want to turn to the latest Reid Research Poll, and I don’t want to be unkind, but, you’re toast arn’t you.

What a zinger.

Currie also said this when talking about National tax cut policy:

Kiwis are seeing through that I think and it is coming through the mood in the boardroom and small businesses are saying actually it is not tax cuts that we want or need right now.

Of course it is not.  Businesses like the rest of us need to make sure that Government is ready to respond to the next community outbreak.

To add to National’s sense of doom Richard Harman is reporting (paywalled) on a leak from National insiders that the Reid Research’s 29.5% poll result for National is not all that far away from the party’s own polls, contradicting Judith Collins’ claims.  And he further said that Collins has turned National’s campaign into a one-woman crusade with minimal staff aiming only to consolidate National’s true blue vote.  Hence the pro farming policies and the wind back of support for the Zero Carbon law.

We are still 19 days out and anything is possible.  But I suspect Currie is right.  National is toast.

45 comments on “Mood of the Boardroom: National is toast ”

  1. Anne 1

    A brief observation of a function I attended yesterday lead by Labour's North Shore candidate, Romy Udunga. It was initiated by a business group called Innovate North Shore. Guest speakers were:

    Hon Deborah Russell, (MP for New Lynn, Chair of the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee, Former Senior Academic Lecturer), Rod Oram (Internationally awarded business journalist, author, public speaker, Chair of the Ākina Foundation); Terry Baucher (Noted media commentator, columnist and author; founder of Baucher Consulting, recipient of ATAINZ President's Award 2020); and Nipun Wadhwa (Business Development Manager at Employsure New Zealand, a leading specialist in the field of health and safety and workplace relations)

    My overall impression was that all of them are comfortable with the Labour-led government and want them to continue in office. Indeed, I think the reason why those sought after guest speakers agreed to attend is because they value highly the talents Deborah Russell brings to the table. I put her in the same category as Megan Woods and she will be a cabinet minister in the next administration.

    Members of the audience (it was a zoom meeting with a small audience of mainly local business people and a smattering of LP members) seemed to echo the same sentiments as the speaker which was really interesting.

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Pleased to hear that Deborah is comfortable with a Labour led Government 😀

      • Anne 1.1.1

        She was of course the principle speaker and the experts on the panel and in the audience were keen to avail her of their thoughts. 😎

      • Chris 1.1.2

        Perhaps she's comfortable with a Labour-led government but would prefer a Greens-led government?

    • RedLogix 1.2

      Yes. And if nothing else COVID will have hammered home to many businesses that they need customers with money in order to survive. And those customers are by and large ordinary working people with the power of choosing how to spend their disposable income.

      My father used to tell me that during the Great Depression most people still had a few quid in their back pocket. But they weren't spending it because they had no confidence in where their income to replace it would come from. And it was this crash in the flow of money that generated so much suffering.

      By contrast this Labour govt has managed to maintain that confidence necessary to keep the system alive in the face of what has been arguably an even greater challenge.

    • Matiri 1.3

      We graze young heifers for a dairy farmer (early fifties, university educated) and he is comfortable with a Labour led government too but is a bit worried about the Greens.

      • Robert Guyton 1.3.1

        The GREEEEEENS!!!!!

        Terrifying!!!

      • tc 1.3.2

        Scaremongering will do that. Good farmers doing the right thing have little to be concerned about IMO as they're a crucial part of the way forward.

        However Nationals binary approach to the greens and an open willingness to trash whatever gets 'in the way' like the RMA (whatever that means) is a gamble Jude seems happy to take.

        Rolling those dice commences with early voting in a week.

  2. Robert Guyton 2

    Judith's attempting to spread some jam.

  3. Incognito 3

    Crushed and burnt toast at that. The death spiral is slow at the beginning but it gets faster as it gets going. One more ‘rogue’ poll and it is likely to accelerate. The 2002 result for National could be beaten in 2020 thanks to Judith and her Shambolic gang. Only DP might save them now but will Judith revert to old form?

    • Robert Guyton 3.1

      Judith should use her loaf; if there's no butter, spread lard.

    • tc 3.2

      NZ's already seen Nat’s covid DP 2.0 with Woodhouse/Boag early on with a whitewash inquiry already, my it's been busy.

      I reckon it'd lack the traction by not having the players in their positions unlike under team shonky's DP 1.0 with slater, Eade, Lusk, DPF etc all on the inside.

      Seeing MSM fact check Jude last week with a ‘must do better’ being a turning point IMO.

      • woodart 3.2.1

        yes, have noticed a real lack of lackies on the herald lately. maybe the editor has seen which way the electorate is going and decided to report the news ,instead of trying to invent the news.

  4. mikesh 4

    Taxes are more or less proportional to income; so, if income is low, tax cuts will be of negligible value; and, if business is booming, tax cuts won't really be adding much to wellbeing.

  5. Dennis Frank 5

    So, as a neocon journo points out, National has to manufacture something even scarier than itself. Not easy, but can be done:

    A focus on life under a Labour-Greens government must be a sitter for Judith Collins when she meets Ardern again in this Wednesday’s TV3 leaders’ debate. https://thespinoff.co.nz/politics/28-09-2020/are-labour-voters-turning-green/

    So there'll by unicorns dancing in the streets if voters don't get it right, and primary schoolkids will be growing lots of crystals – maybe even learning how to use them! Be scared.

    So, just about the only thing that could spike Labour’s guns now would be a sudden rush of electoral fear about what a Labour-Greens government might look like.

    Jacinda's 5-point plan has proven so bland nobody here has even bothered to comment on it. I suspect that could be due to lack of essays posted which analyse it, eh? Well, maybe I just didn't notice them or remember them. Regardless, perception of a blank slate in her hand on which her campaign promises are not inscribed could motivate some hallucinations about invisible ink. Judith may ask the PM, during the next debate, what she's seeking a mandate for. Replying continuance would underwhelm viewers, replying business as usual would alienate progressives, so could be a challenge!

    • Pat 5.1

      Few are looking at 'the plans' (that in reality are so loose as to be pointless) of any party….the voting is largely visceral and based on perception….the Gov have successfully pointed to underinvestment from the previous decade just as National consistently point to increased taxation (bigger government) by Labour.

      What people are asking themselves is 'who will be more likely to assist me and mine as the shit hits the fan?'…and that question is easily answered

    • Incognito 5.2

      Judith may ask the PM, during the next debate, what she’s seeking a mandate for.

      That would a sure-win debating tactic; it served her well during QT in Parliament.

    • woodart 5.3

      as the great philospher mike tyson once said" a plan is all good until you get smacked in the face" covid is an ongoing smack in the face. piloting the ship of state through narly icebergs needs a steady hand, not zap brannigan(google it). expecting outrageous,courageous, or any other 'eous plans right now is foolishness. for you and collins.

      • Dennis Frank 5.3.1

        Still haven't figured out how to think green, eh? Resilience planning is so sensible it can encompass any contingency. Likewise sustainability planning. I think the PM thinks about it – she did proclaim last election that she anticipated leading a transformational govt.

        I'd be surprised if she has abandoned that prospect. I assume she lacks the courage to campaign on that this time due to the inherent weakness of her team. I understand why you believe being sensible is foolish. Typical Labour.

  6. Enough is Enough 6

    I work in conservative corporate law firm with many clients in the diary industry. So I'm getting a good feel from colleagues and clients (those folk on the other side of the political spectrum) as to what way they are leaning in 2020.

    Almost without exception, business and corporate leaders have concluded that National is toast, so the question then becomes who do they vote for, which seems to fall into three categories:

    1. Those who will always vote National so are staying true

    2. Righties who cant stand Crusher, but will never vote left, are moving their vote to ACT

    3. Those who are voting Labour in the hope they get an absolute majority to limit the Green influence.

    I see Labour and Act both gaining 5% as a result of 2 and 3.

    • Andre 6.1

      I'm surprised the diary industry still exists. I would have thought the various smartphone and desktop apps would have sent them the way of buggy-whips.

      • ianmac 6.1.1

        Hear Hear.smiley

      • Dennis Frank 6.1.2

        I'm surprised the diary industry still exists

        Because it's part of business as usual. If they lacked diaries they wouldn't be able to schedule their meetings.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.2.1

          ???

          That's what the various calendar apps do and its much easier to do so with them than via a paper diary.

          • mac1 6.1.2.1.1

            It's seven days a week working in the diary industry. For those hard-working Kiwis in the dairy industry, on the other hand, up to their knees in mud, splashed in urine, fenced off in isolation, it's hard too- and that's just the cows!

      • Hunter Thompson II 6.1.3

        We've got contract law, employment law, tax law and traffic law so it comes as no surprise there is now diary law.

        Lawyers will claim to be specialists no matter what the topic ("education law" is another fruitful field they are working).

        Interesting that some farmers might vote Labour. Anything to prevent clean rivers for the grandchildren, I suppose.

  7. Lettuce 7

    There seems to have been a dramatic volte-face within the New Zealand business community. Grant Robertson has risen from being "that fat poof who's going to bankrupt us all!" to become "the competent bloke keeping a steady hand on the tiller and saving the nation". Meanwhile Paul Goldsmith has been dramatically downgraded from "the sensible supply side economist we need to lead the forthcoming recovery" to "that absolute basket-case who can't even cope with basic sums". I doubt "Goldie" will be buying Steven Joyce a beer at the next National Party conference.

  8. Brendan 8

    Nat voter here.

    It would be difficult for team blue to win. The left block has a greater share of the vote compared to the right block. The big question is will team red govern alone?

    I look at signs saying "Strong team" and think – who thought that up? After the coup, a breakdown, and resignations upon high – it just does not look or feel right (It might be very true, but the voter aint going to feel that).

    So I guess the average Nat voter is going to hope that Winston gets fired, and take comfort in that. There is too much Utu in many in team blue to work with him again.

    I think too that many in team blue don't like that the Nats have been too nice to Jacinda. So when there is nothing left too lose – bring in the attack dog of Collins and fight nasty.

    I guess we will just have to see what happens.

    • Robert Guyton 8.1

      Hi, Nat voter. Not "difficult" – impossible. Collins may well let loose the dogs of war, but they'll quickly bite her on the bum 🙂

      • greywarshark 8.1.1

        Of course the thing to remember is that this is not a sporting match with our team winning over your team, suck it up or whatever. Brendan talks about teams, which is probably meant to refer to cohesiveness within the Parties, but in fact that is the line that most Nats take.

        They haven't the intellectual capacity to expand beyond gaining wealth and advantage to remembering what politics is supposed to be about. Instead they fill the vacant spot in their brains with slogans and wishes for prizes of combat, won on the virtual field of battle.

    • woodart 8.2

      yes, to bring in the attack dogs and fight nasty? will play well for the vast minority of kiwis, and that last fact is the nail in collins coffin . and the nats will go down with her. of all the leadership groups that the nats have had this year? this current strong team is the worst. when the deputy and campaign leader is hidden from the public,the finance spokesman is being shouted drinks by robertson, and collins is forced into pretending she likes farmers, its not toast, its soggy white bread…revenge on winston ..whatever…

    • Dennis Frank 8.3

      Brendan, now that business is going green in both thinking & ways of doing it, how come National is trying to stop that? Greens can't work with them if they refuse to be intelligent, which keeps them locked into Labour (who also are continually reluctant to be intelligent).

      Best practice is part of business ethos, right? Not just efficiency gains. Resilience via sustainability. We know this transformation is global – been happening since early 1990s when Ted Turner told CNN (as their owner) to start churning out good Green news stories, so no excuse for slow learners – so why are the Nats so thick?

    • Christopher Randal 8.4

      I think not.

      My feeling is that Crusher's "dogs of war" approach is what is turning people off the Blues. That and Goldsmith's inability to do properly what a secondary school student could do. Anybody remember the ASB advertisement where "Goldstein" was trying to use a calculator and said "somebody send me a kid"?

    • gsays 8.5

      Cheers Brendan, Good analysis. As a society we are very tribal, from the yeast spread we favour, the rugby club the family plays for, through to the blue or red or green political team.

      It looks like National needs to rebuild, reassess it's priorities and acknowledge we are twenty years into the 21st century. Trim some of the less productive wood from yesty year (eg Smith, Brownlee) and let new growth emerge. This may include behind the scenes players, the likes of Boag, Goodfellow etc.

  9. ianmac 9

    National is caught with a generous saving of ACT.

    Judith is caught by a generous hoisting of Dr Reti but now he is much smarter and much more credible than Collins so she must keep him hidden. How sad.

    • woodart 9.1

      or, the nats have privatley admitted the ship is on the rocks and dr shane has been given a lifeboat to get away. maybe with luxon?imagine that, being parachuted into a lifeboat!

  10. Adrian 10

    Simon Bridges will rise again. He's in a good mood and that's strange so he knows something.. maybe even before the election.

  11. Christopher Randal 11

    I've had a feeling for a while that when Crusher was appointed there was a cadre within the party that weren't happy so they have set out to ruin the party's chances. Is Goldsmith one of them?

  12. calltoaccount 12

    Any real chance of centralist Nat voters like these coming over to Labour to keep the Greens out? The Greens seem over the line in these polls. Panicking Nats voting Labour would help a lot with the Nat’s death spiral if so.

    Or would it be a step too far? There’s no sign of them using NZF as a ‘hand break’. It actually seems any Nat leaning NZF people have ditched Winston.

    So do those Nats who don’t want any Green in what they may see as an obviously incoming government make the long jump over to Labour? Or do they just stay home?

  13. Tricledrown 13

    Nationals tight fisted fiscal policies and running down of the health system cutting police numbers cuts in education etc for tax cuts for the well off are the wrong policies for a sustained recovery.

  14. karol121 14

    Well done that tow trucker! (I think that this was how Graeme Hart started out in enterprise).

    But if he's takin' the car, I'll have the wheels.

    National has, no doubt, already projected to 2023 and is not likely to be thinking too much about toast (nor eggs for that matter).

    Most of 'em have probably had an enjoyable 3 years out of the "responsibility for the mess" limelight. A chance for many of them to attend to other business and recreational activities, no doubt.

    Part of the new technology projections and proposals for New-Aotearoa may give them or those like them more time on their hands. An AI/IT based machine that does most of their party and personal candidacy campaigning for them, does their party funding management, budgeting and administration for them, and provides parliamentary briefings for all but supplementary questions and answers.

    Then all they would need to do for the most part would be to present for photo ops, media clips, parliamentary session clips, fill their tum tums with kai and squeak now and then when advised to do so by the machine.

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