National’s Civil War

Written By: - Date published: 11:59 am, October 21st, 2013 - 170 comments
Categories: national - Tags: , ,

Republican black night lets call it a draw Barak Obama’s success in the last US election was in part due to the quality of his opposition.  The Tea Party dominated Republican Party was just too scary and extreme.  This turned off swinging voters and energised progressive activists for who a Mitt Romney White House was just too awful to contemplate.  Despite considerable liberal misgivings they stood behind Obama and helped to push him over the line.

This failure has not stopped the right from continuing its extremism.  The US Government shut down and the attempted stopping of the raising of the US debt limit are shining examples of how crazy they are.  As an example of how crazy Republican Senator Mike Lee is reported to have said of the deal that kickstarted the US Government and averted a cataclysmic melt down of the world’s economic system “[t]his is Washington at its worst” and that it was exactly what the American people are fed up with.  And 18 Republican Senators and 144 Republican members of the House of Representatives voted against the bill which reopened the American Government and averted a world wide economic crisis.

Senator John McCain, who is on the moderate side of the party, has stated that the Republicans had lost the battle and were asking for something that they could not get.  Even the Koch Brothers, reputedly the original astroturfing creators of the Tea Party opposed the brinkmanship.  From afar it is clear that there is a battle for control of the Republican Party between those who want to make Government work and those who want to destroy it.

New Zealand is seeing its own version of the Tea Party start to emerge and the moderates are starting to hit back.  On the moderate side are people such as Bill English, Stephen Joyce  and Michelle Boag.  On the Tea Party side is the Judith Collins faction with supporters including Simon Lusk and Cameron Slater.

Lusk is an interesting person.  A campaign paper that he prepared for the Party was leaked to the Standard a few months ago.  In it he described the current National Government as a “disappointment to fiscal conservatives”.  He advocated tea party like for reducing the size of Government.  He described New Zealand’s political market as “exceptionally retarded”.  He advocated for the blackballing of existing National MPs and the building up of a large fund so that his goals could be implemented.  The document is both simplistic and chilling at the same time.

He advocated for the developing of a limited number of young people to position them for a career in politics and it appears that Wewege may be one of them.

It is clear that elements in the National Party are recoiling from the Lusk/Slater approach to politics and this is clear from the response to the treatment of Bevan Chuang.  A Herald article yesterday included this interesting passage:

[Palino’s denial of knowledge of the affair] came amid a bitter battle yesterday between senior members of the Palino team and National Party insiders.

Palino’s election team was tearing itself apart last night over who was aware of the Brown affair.

Rob Nesbit-Savage, who left as campaign manager in June, said he was saddened by Palino’s behaviour.

“If it’s true, he would have lost all credibility with me. I’d be quite disgusted. I’m also disappointed that Len seems to be getting away scot-free and ignored,” Nesbit-Savage said.

National Party campaigner and volunteer Hamish Price said that he was approached to write Palino’s campaign policy, but it was only four months out from the election and such a big job that he couldn’t have done it as a volunteer.

Price did not rate political strategist Luigi Wewege or others involved in the Palino campaign.

“People who weren’t wanted elsewhere, or had zero campaign experience. No significant current National Party figures went near the campaign, as it was generally known to be entirely dysfunctional.”

However, campaign manager and former National Party president John Slater hit back and said Palino had been consistent with what he had said all week.

He said Price was persona non grata after being denied a job with the Palino team.

Despite key players describing themselves as National Party activists, Prime Minister John Key would not be drawn on how the fiasco reflected on his party.

A spokeswoman for the Prime Minister said no one was paid by the National Party to work on the campaign.

The extent of the battle can be seen in this Facebook post made by Hamish Price.  Price has done the decent thing and sought to protect Chuang from being used by Slater and Wewege.  He is obviously from the conservative respectful wing of the party.  He sums up the situation by saying to Slater that he and reporter Stephen Cook “have been a party to a sickening, deceitful, dishonest and corrupt plan to not just steal a democratic election, but to exploit other people’s misery.”  The post is publicly available and was linked to in Kiwiblog.

Slater’s comment that all politicians are dirty disgusting despicable people says much about his mind set.  It is now apparent that elements of the National Party realise the danger that he presents and are seeking to depower him.

170 comments on “National’s Civil War”

  1. aerobubble 1

    English came out on Q&A and declared the brighter future next year. I think Key has been using that since he was first elected.

    Boag on Q&A, to the cue I suppose, then declared that all hell would have frozen over had key not been elected. That Labour didn’t have the qualifications to have averted a NZ depression. Of course this laughable statement went unchallenged as so often the Tea Party NZ exaggerated nonsense does.

    The fact is the NZ economy is hollowed out and highly dependent on primary exports, so while broader, deeper economies take a huge hit as their added value sectors stagnate, NZ comparably looks like a bastion of stability and good management when the quite opposite is the case. The decades of poor legislative oversight has lost us trillions as we put our money into under regulated finance companies, into leaky moldy poorly placed one type fits all macmansions, fishing slaves… etc. It all takes money out of citizens pockets to rebuild. And lets not get started on the sandy foundations of Christchurch, geez, they built a building after the Earthquake and had to demolish it
    as its was such a Earthquake threat!!!

    So as the worlds banks print money, the smart money buys safe stagnate NZ dollars burdening us all with high dollar, we are paying the smarter money of the world every time we go to the bouzer. Our brightest can’t get a look in so fly the ditch, our jails fill up with people desperate, beaten, criminalized because they want a future, their parents can’t give it to them and beat them for being upstarts.

    The high dollar would not be a problem if Key was printing money and building homes, spending on a second chamber to oversee the legislative stream and growing NZ.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      “The fact is the NZ economy is hollowed out and highly dependent on primary exports, so while broader, deeper economies take a huge hit as their added value sectors stagnate, NZ comparably looks like a bastion of stability and good management when the quite opposite is the case.”


      • aerobubble 1.1.1

        Capitalism is all about creative destruction, so any stability is regarded as inefficient, its up for destruction. Now why is the NZ economy so stable? Well because our political economic elite is highly risk averse, and the MSM manufacture consent for its highly risk averse nature. Just take Boag on Q&A basic expressing extreme tea party doctrine, that big and strong is always subtle and adept, chiming in with Key and English that the brighter future is just around the corner and that Key kept us from going into depression, obviously just more bunk to hold off from doing anything risky. Like printing money to build infrastructure, homes, new city, we have the power its the parliament that took away the upper chamber and so made their jobs easy, reckless and risk averse (risk is managed not avoided, as such, it is highly non-reckless).

        So globally the smart investors piles into the NZ economy, buying NZ dollars for its stability as a hedge against their own economies instability. And that’s what we pay for every time we go to the petrol bowser and fill up, Key’s risk aversion. For 30 years instead of writing better laws, managing the economy by legislating best practice, we have had to wear heavier costs, from leaky homes, from sand earthquake prone buildings in ChCh, from misdirected incentives that reward mcMansions and push up prices for the medium and lower paid, and even now creeping up on the upper middle classes.

        • Tat Loo

          Capitalism is all about creative destruction

          That’s what true capitalism is about, and there are some benefits from that process of “creative destruction”.

          More recently however what we have more and more of is ‘crony capitalism’. Eg where “Too Big to Fail” banks etc. have simply been bailed out at tax payers expense, to carry on with their ponzi speculation and million dollar bonuses as usual.

          Whereas they should have been allowed to fail and then broken up, to prevent the ongoing systemic danger to the global financial system that they still pose.

          • Lanthanide

            “Whereas they should have been allowed to fail”

            Arguable. Definitely they should have been broken up, but that doesn’t mean they needed to have failed first. Cutting off your nose to spite your face isn’t a good strategy.

            • Pascal's bookie

              Yeah, ironically “allowed to fail” is the Tea Party position.

              The point of too big to fail, is that them failing would have been catastrophic, rather than just fucking terrible.

              The lesson, unlearned, is that too big to fail is too big to be.

              • Tat Loo

                So let’s be clear about what allowing one of these big banks to fail might like.

                From a NZ standpoint, it would look more like a receivership where daily operations continue, rather than a shuttering of doors and a liquidation.

                1) You stand down all directors from the board, and place all executive management on leave. Any useful ones are brought back on an ad hoc basis, under statutory supervision. Everything is then audited with a fine toothcomb to see what the state of the organisation really is, even as most daily operations are permitted to continue.

                2) Lanth you make the point that breaking up doesn’t require failure first. True, if you are thinking of failure along the lines I have described above (shuttering the doors and outright liquidation) – but any serious breaking up means that shareholders and bond holders will take a hit and executive and board are moved on. Better than losing everything though. Financially sound parts of the organisation are allowed to continue while insolvent parts separated off. From most points of view that is pretty much a typical corporate failure.

                The PR boys can of course call it a “corporate restructuring” or a “corporate reorganisation” if they want to.

                3) “The lesson, unlearned, is that too big to fail is too big to be.” Correct. However, TBTF in the USA have figured this out and responded by buying themselves massive amounts of real political influence.

                • jaymam

                  “Everything is then audited with a fine toothcomb to see what the state of the organisation really is”
                  and anyone shown to have breached the rules of the bank (or the law) should be prosecuted. Oh but that didn’t happen with the BNZ:

                  “At this stage Sir Michael Fay became very irate and told me that it was quote `my effing bank’, and `I will do anything I want to’.”

        • Crunchtime

          “Creative destruction”? Ridiculous. Capitalism is about making and increasing profits.

          Capitalism is about competition creating and incteasing efficiency. Unfortunately that “efficiency” comes at the expense of employer pay and conditions – if you let it.

          Ultimately, capitalism is about making the rich richer and the poor poorer… which is how we got into this horrible state today where chief exectives make 10 to 100 times more than the average worker in their company.

          If you earn that much more than the average worker, you wield such power that almost inevitably you consider the average worker inferior, less than human.

          It has been proven that if the richest earn more than 10 times the average worker, democracy is compromised. It is no longer one man one vote, because dollars buy you influence. We are far beyond 10 times.

          Ultimately also, extreme wealth/povery gaps in society have a very negative impact on the economy. Unfettered capitalism is ultimately bad for the economy.

          Aerobubble, your ill-advised comments are quite ironic, I hope you appreciate. Unfettered risk-taking with insulation from that risk is exactly what caused the GFC. Superbanks plunged the markets – and the banks themselves – into a financial crisis. Then they get huge bonuses.

          The Christchurch earthquakes have been horrendously mismanaged – because the EQC was largely gutted and hadn’t the resources or expertise to deal with a real disaster. Allowing the EQC to get into such a state was risk taking by Key and the National govt. Of the wrong kind.

          If you mean Key is “risk averse” because he keeps handing deals to companies that “might go bankrupt” or leave the country (Rio Tinto, Chorus etc) – I believe that “risk aversion” is just PR spin. They are both trying to make themselves look good and set up conditions to do so, and handing out corporate welfare to Key’s buddies. I don’t buy this “risk aversion” hokum.

          • SpaceMonkey

            Efficiency comes at the expense of resilience and we can see its effects in the public sector. The relentless pursuit of efficiencies, “doing more with less”, has left a public sector hollowed out with little or no resilience. I’ve lost count of the number of times I have gone to talk to a team of people to ask questions and the response has been “that’s so-and-so’s job and they’re away this week” with no one backing them up. The job has effectively been abandoned for the week.

            “John Key” and “risk averse” don’t go together. He was a fx trader (and still is at heart)… rubbing shoulders with the biggest of the Wall St and City of London banksters. These guys are about as far from risk averse as you can get. They thrive taking risks but then that’s easy to do when the organisations you work for are in the business of ensuring the risk is all on the customer or society and none on themselves. It is hokum, as you say.

            • aerobubble

              Change happens, its core to the way our universe happens. Humans however are conservative, they seek control over their environment and each other. This presents the problem that Democracy and Capitalism (the two latest working solutions) solve, that
              people will get used to the way they are and the way the world is and not want to change.
              And its change that is always present, its the stopping that causes the problems, or the running wildly out of control.

              Democracy allows for change of leaderships, Capitalism allows for the overthrow of poorly managed capital. Except of course when it doesn’t, when the elites decide they want thirty years of drongo neo-liberalism economics and reward the follows of the cult of free market to bung up parliaments, boardrooms and media chairs – stopping the natural sacking of poor managers
              (or worse measuring managers by profit alone).

              You see too much change, inappropriate change, misused change, these have been the hallmarks of our economies, due to every decreasing price of high density fuels. Change became the norm, but the kind of change was wrongheaded, short-term and is now exposed as counter to our environment, our society and yes even our businesses.

              NZ suffers because its a last mover, its weakens itself when it embraces neo-liberalism, failing to spend and take risks when in the ascendency (i.e. when globally invest want our dollar). Key has failed when he continues to shore up the primary sector in the best of times, and keeps them locked into bad arrangements that rob NZ of the lion share of farmers value creation.

              Capitalism, like Democracy, is all about unseating incumbents and in doing so taking up the causes, and undercurrents, of those who seek change. Until they become the new orthodoxy and the new business sectors, and become tired and stable ready for a new round of overthrow. Since its Evolution than made us, evolution that has solved these problems already…

              That was how its supposed to work, yet for the last thirty years we’ve had a lowering energy price, cheap high energy density fuels made it all to well for us to grow unsustainable sprawl, unworkable consumerism, unattached from demands of the majority and at the whims of the few who have already vast resources.

              You don’t make a stable or competent capitalism by having the few owning the majority, and you can’t have a competent democracy with 122? senatorial
              chamber. Spreading the decision making is much like rewarding as many investors. Its just nonsense for Key and National to want a spread of investors yet not want an upper chamber, its the same essential idea, more eyes, more egos, more debate, more concessions, more consensus, better government.

      • Saarbo 1.1.2


        • aerobubble

          Keep NZ stable, and let world markets plunder that stability. This is the National party. we should be taking the high demand for our dollar and investing it in our nation.

  2. Lanthanide 2

    “The Tea Party dominated Republican Party was just too scary and extreme. … The US Government shut down and the attempted stopping of the raising of the US debt limit are shining examples of how crazy they are. ”

    Having done a very minor amount of further reading on this, it seems the fundamental kernel behind the tea party is to reduce the government deficit and ultimately rein the national debt back in. There’s nothing wrong with this as a goal.

    The problem is how they’re trying to achieve it; there seems to be a belief that the federal government should only spend money on things directly written about in the constitution and no more. Which is a good way of locking your country in the past with a constitution that is incapable of evolving with the times. For example a couple of things they’d want to defund would be the US geological survey and the national hurricane center. It’s hard to take people who propose shutting down those vital agencies as anything other than anti-science at best and out of touch with reality at worst.

  3. captain hook 3

    National always gets the boot when the electorate has had enough of the lowbrow thugs the party recruits when they think they are on to a winner.
    Ultimately these cretins just dont cut it and the wiseheads in the party realise its time to regroup and do something about the epiphenominal scum of the algae bloom that threatens to explode and engulf everything in a flood of mush.

  4. New Zealand has its own version of the tea party, its a left wing version though, Te Mana.

    In terms of a kiwi right wing te party, maybe the conservative party? But they’re so small they’re not wortth worrying about, remember we dont have a faux news that can promote them.

    • framu 4.1

      how is mana like the tea party brett? Do please explain

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 4.1.1

        Don’t hold your breath 🙂

        • Brett Dale


          Spitting on the floor in the beehive, using abusive language to people you dont like, extreme activists, and the leaders are all multi millionaires who prey on people’s hatred.

          • framu

            yeah cause thats totes what the tea party are about

            fuck brett, so you dont like mana – whoopdee friggin doo –
            but you could at least demonstrate a functional level of intellect before you compare political factions based purely on their manners – they do have, you know, ideologies, backers and goals as well.

            do you call apples and oranges the same thing because they both grow on trees?

            “and the leaders are all multi millionaires who prey on people’s hatred.” really? thats a new one on me. I would like you to elaborate on both parts of that one

          • marty mars

            oh brett why be so envious – you can do all that too if you set up a political party – just need to find some multi millionaire backers lol

            • Brett Dale


              The last thing I want to do is set up a political party, politics is not about helping people,
              its about wanting people to come around to your views, its about power and control, and all parties those on the left and right do it.

              Believe me, all parties ignore science when it doesnt suit their ideology.

              • It can be ‘power and control’ to ‘help people’ brett at least we must try to make it that way. It is too easy to blame and use that to feel helpless – but that road leads only to sorrow. Better to keep fighting on, against the odds, one step at a time.

          • QoT

            white mofos
            white mofos
            white mofos

            OMG worst racism eveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeer.

          • Murray Olsen

            Who are the multi millionaires leading Mana, Brett? I would be happy to accept even one name.

              • i’ve been to mana party meetings..

                ..dale’s correct..

                ..just dripping with ‘multi-millionaires’..they are..

       can’t get into those meetings..

                ..for the porsches etc. cluttering up the forecourts..

                ..of the stately mansions in which such meetings are generally held..

                ..(um..! the dale-persona some lefties idea of having a laff..?

                ..he says such funny/caricature- stuff all the

       individual could be that cartoonish..)

                ..phillip ure..

                • greywarbler

                  Phillip u
                  Brett Dale cartoonish? Perhaps he was one of those cheesy characters from the 1970s Ches and Dale who are from ‘down on the farm and they really know their cheese.’ Now he has a new persona in the ‘naughties’.

                • Phillip:

                  Thats my whole point, its members are poor, but their so call leaders arent.

                  • felix

                    Pretty sure Hone is actually the Leader of Mana.

                    Why you’d think he wasn’t is beyond me.

                  • Tat Loo

                    Harawira leads a party focused on helping those in poverty. Key leads a party focused on helping those who are millionaires.

                    Do you not see the moral difference there?

                  • Mary

                    You’re getting confused with the Destiny Church.

                  • brett you have lost it – I’m not saying you ever had it but whatever part of it you may have had is now lost. You are it-less in the worst possible meaning of that term. You may not realise that you have lost it because you were never self aware enough to know the it you have finally lost but lost it is and will remain.

                  • greywarbler

                    Wasn’t there a slave uprising somewhere in South America. The leader Simon Bolivar tried to make a difference of some sort to the people who needed a champion. But he, and what he tried to do was bound to be criticised by people like you who specialise in finding fault with change and people who want it, who interfere with your status quo. And these are to be found on the left and the right, but I think more on the right.

                    You remind me of the poor little man making faux complaints in the Monty Python bookshop sketch. ‘This one’s no good. It has pictures of robins in it. Robins wet their nests.’ John Cleese the bookseller, to get this harping presence out of the shop offers to buy the book for him. But he actually can’t read. Final line – ‘ John Cleese sighing, says ‘Sit down then and I’ll read it to you.’

                    So stick round here BD and we’ll patiently or impatiently give you the words to form new ideas, if you can absorb and cogitate. New word?.

              • Murray Olsen

                I’ve met Hone. He hides his wealth well.
                Do you actually believe the crap you write?

    • Populuxe1 4.2

      Don’t be silly – Mana are more like Mugabist Maoists

  5. King Kong 5

    Three inconsequential muppets running around playing “political hatchet men” does not make a tea party.

    You are drawing a very long bow but I can see why you are doing it. Having spent the last 5 years defending against claims of treachery in your own camp, you know first hand how much it hurts.

    Trying to put your opposition under the same scrutiny, whether it is true or not (its not, by the way) is not a bad plan.

    • framu 5.1

      no – but a long established faction within the main right wing party that has openly declared a desire to use pretty much the same MO does kinds look similar

      • King Kong 5.1.1

        Calling them “a long established faction” in the National party is a bit of a push. It is similar to saying there is a well established “grumpy old cunts” faction in the Labour party, due to how lprent behaves on here.

        [lprent: See
        But I see that you are ook’ing your way to losing even more arguments in a long running series, so I should let you carry on with that rather than giving you your desired holiday. ]

        • King Kong

          “But I see that you are ook’ing your way to losing even more arguments in a long running series”

          says you. Personally I reckon I am crushing it.

        • framu

          No its not a bit of a push

          is collins a contender for leadership? yes/no
          is lusk involved with both collins and slater? yes/no
          is slater aligned with collins? yes/no

          is lprent publicly associated with a known faction within the labour party?

          thats the clincher – its no secret that collins, lusk and slater are in the same camp.

          • King Kong

            Hand on my heart, I don’t know the answer to any of these questions.

            Like you, I have heard some rumour and innuendo on here but pretty certain you can’t treat that as verifiable fact.

            I am fairly certain you are not a National insider so are just making it up as you go along/wildly believing of your heroes on here.

            • Rogue Trooper

              does your territory not range across more than one mountain-side King Kong, or your empire extend from basement to penthouse…

            • framu

              true enough on the inside knowledge – but theres plenty out there that is either undisputed, supported by other known things or documented fact that when you look at the full picture you can draw some fairly reliable conclusions

              is collins a contender for leadership? no one denies it and the media think she is
              is lusk involved with both collins and slater? all signs point to yes
              is slater aligned with collins? all signs point to yes

              And im talking of things outside of the standard

              so, not court of law fact of course, but in the general scheme of things i feel pretty safe here.

              You can believe what you want – but if your going to put forward that there isnt a collins faction and that lusk and slater arent involved in the same faction, your going to get some odd looks from pretty much anyone who follows politics in NZ

            • McFlock

              if you don’t know the answer to any of those questions, than how do you know that the nats have “so much unity and discipline”?

              if the answers are:
              is collins a contender for leadership? yes
              is lusk involved with both collins and slater? yes
              is slater aligned with collins? yes

              …then that points to a not-insubstantial schism within the party.

              • King Kong

                No it doesn’t.

                Is Collins currently attempting to take the leadership off Key? – No

                After his public cock up in the handling of the “pants down Brown” affair will Collins still have anything more to do with Slater? – Probably not.

                Is Lusk really involved with Collins other than assumptions based on his friendship with Slater? – probably not.

                • framu

                  no it does – but it does seem you now need to retract your other assertions – after all youve admitted you dont know

                • McFlock

                  Is Collins currently attempting to take the leadership off Key? – No
                  Or yes.
                  Or quietly working on one or two caucus members who might go either way.
                  You don’t know.

                  After his public cock up in the handling of the “pants down Brown” affair will Collins still have anything more to do with Slater? – Probably not.
                  You don’t know that.
                  And would pulling away from either slater mean anything to question one? Logically, probably not.

                  Is Lusk really involved with Collins other than assumptions based on his friendship with Slater? – probably not.
                  You don’t know that. Although we do know that, like hooten, lusk is one of those little sycophants on the periphery of court, seeking to curry favour with those in (or plotting to be in) power.

                • felix

                  I like how King Kong one minute admits – hand on heart – that he doesn’t know anything about these matters…

                  …and nek minit he’s 100% sure that Collins isn’t doing nuthin and everyone else is wrong.

                  Stupid monkey. Transparent monkey.

        • QoT

          LOL vaginas are disgusting HAHAHA

    • Tiger Mountain 5.2

      C’mon ’Dong which three “inconsequentials” are you referring to? There is rarely a genuine monolithic unity in any political group or movement. There are so many splits in National due to the individualist philosophy.

      • King Kong 5.2.1

        “There are so many splits in National due to the individualist philosophy.”

        you wish. It must be killing you guys that the Nats have so much unity and discipline.

        • lprent

          Keith Holyoake has been dead a long time. That was the last time I saw them with any discipline.

          • King Kong

            I guess the last time for Labour was when David Benson Pope was there.

          • Tim

            Skeith – complete with suspender belt holding his ample gut in for image purposes, would more than likely be rolling in his grave if EVER he were to have seen the likes of King Kong being a suppota.
            I’m not sure what should be done to assist the current crop of Gnat MP’s greed though in terms of apparatus to assist with image. Simon Bridges has a real problem (going forward).
            Wheel barrows perhaps? 19th Century fashion?
            They’ve certainly got a problem with the size of their coloquial ARSES that seem to be where they think speech capability comes from.

        • mickysavage

          It must be killing you guys that the Nats have so much unity and discipline.

          Like it or not Kong Slater is an integral part of the National Party. His handling of this issue has been appallingly bad and this is starting to rub off on the National Party. He really has made a pig’s ear of it. If he had not reached and if the news of the affair had just surfaced Len would be in an even worse position.

          But by overreaching and thinking that he could force Brown to quit Slater has blown it.

          He has managed to upset Bevan Chuang and now spends all his days explaining things.

          What is that saying that he has about how to explain is to lose?

          • King Kong

            I agree with you on Slater’s handling of the matter. His ego was always going to get the better of him and on this occasion he has blown his own foot off.

            Not sure that he is, or is perceived to be, a part of the Nats. The broader right is probably more accurate.

            You are right that he will become persona non grata with the Nats and without his networks will fade into obscurity, spending his life posting videos of people being hit in the nuts and other trending internet guff.

            • Rogue Trooper

              lol. Brass.

            • framu

              “Not sure that he is, or is perceived to be, a part of the Nats. The broader right is probably more accurate.”
              wow! seriously? you actually believe that?

              that you think slater is somehow more associated with the broader right, and not with a faction of the nats, is so laughable im a bit sorry for you

        • Tiger Mountain

          What do you mean “you guys” white man. Jersey’s Pallino and his ‘bag men’ stink way worse than Brown already.

          Bravado cannot cover that any party left or right is subject to inner faction machinations.

        • ghostwhowalksnz

          Unity and Discipline ???

          Aaron Gilmore ??

          Plus they are losing MPs before their time is up.

    • Fisiani 5.3

      Absolutely right KK. Thomas Friedman 3 times Pulitzer Prize winner who was in Wellington in 2012 remarked that virtually all of NZ politics would comfortably sit within the Democratic Party. He could discern no significant group in NZ that would fit with Republicans. The Tea Party analogy is thus ludicrous.

      • Pascal's bookie 5.3.1

        Friedman is fucking idiot Pulitzer prizes notwithstanding though. So that’s not actually good evidence of anything.

      • mickysavage 5.3.2

        I take it you did not read the Lusk paper that I linked to?

        The one that said:

        “This National Government has been a disappointment to fiscal conservatives. The wet wing of the National Party control the senior ranks of the party, and cannot be easily replaced without losing an election.

        After National loses an election there will be a clean out. It is essential we have fiscal conservatives who are willing to make serious changes to control the culture of the party.

        This is part of a long term plan to move the political centre to the right. This means reducing the size of government, weakening the power of those who believe in big government, and investing for at least 20 years to ensure that these changes are permanent.”

        Sounds like a tea party world view to me.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead

          Don’t be daft. The National Party relies on people not reading documents, remember?

  6. Lan 6

    “Tea party” is focused on getting rid of Obamacare and their perception of “socialised” medicine.

  7. Red Rosa 7

    The Tea Party is intriguing. Ever since Nixon, the Republicans have been out to grab the mass of Angry White voters and bible bashers in the Old South, Democrats almost to a man until the 1965 Civil Rights Act. This has worked so well the party is now beholden to them. Note the primary battles already under way for next year’s elections, when even their old guard conservatives are under fire .

    So now, by the usual standards, the Republicans are split – Extreme Right and Ultra Right.

    What of NZ? There have to be parallels, though of course tepid by comparison. The National Party, which well within living memory had a solid urban liberal section and gave at least a passing nod to social justice, has drifted further and further to the Right since the Shipley coup. Key is the smiling face of this shift, but just check out his hatchet crew and their policies. Anyone seriously considering Joyce a ‘moderate’ must be joking.

    National are trying desperately to present themselves as a party of at least some sensible moderates, for what may well be an early election. But the Parliament TV clips of Key, Smith & Carter in full contemptuous mode, the Bridges TV3 interview, and the latest Auckland smear fiasco must have their strategists tearing their hair out.

    Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch.

    • Rogue Trooper 7.1

      well put Rosa

    • Wayne 7.2

      Red Rosa,

      Thomas Friedman is right, the Nats would fit into the Democrats right wing.

      I know there is a view here that Nats are radical right. But that would not explain why the Nats are comfortable with WFF, interest free student loans, home insulation, introduced a 90 day bill that is the most moderate in the entire OECD, have a $13.75 minimum wage, virtually no controversy in health.

      Look at the actual issues in dispute in NZ, selling 49% in 4 SOE’s, national standards, 5 charter schools, 33% top tax compared to 39%, a tougher ETS, not sure where Labour stands on oil drilling. But I suspect they will back TPP.

      I know there is the usual day to day political debate, but a lot of that is the froth of politics. There is of course a political history to the two main parties that genuflects their core voter support, but that is not deeply reflected in the parties (when in govt) relentlessly acting only for their side.

      Compared to the issues in debate in the US, these differences are really small beer, and show relatively small differences. For instance, take the NZF position on their KiwiFund. Essentially just an alternate state provider competing with existing funds, hardly a radical change.

      I guess an outside observer like Friedman can see this more clearly than we can.

      • Tat Loo 7.2.1

        The National Party manifesto would look positively communist-marxist in US politics today.

        And ACT would be considered a socialist party, still far to the Left of today’s Democratic Party.

        However this doesn’t describe how reasonable National and ACT are, it merely describes how far disconnected out on a limb mainstream US politics has become.

      • Rogue Trooper 7.2.2

        to quote the sound McFlock- “pfft”

      • greywarbler 7.2.3

        Jeez Wayne
        All those things you mentioned as being accepted by NACTs are on the list of nice to haves ready for knife action. They are working away at bringing down NZ to its knees but good things take time. They’re just saving something for their next terms, they think.

      • Pascal's bookie 7.2.4


        “Look at the actual issues in dispute in NZ, selling 49% in 4 SOE’s, national standards, 5 charter schools, 33% top tax compared to 39%, a tougher ETS, not sure where Labour stands on oil drilling.”

        So an ideological fixation on shrinking the state, the education policies of George W Bush, (which came out the fever swamps of the religious right), an ETS that doesn’t work, and Sarah Palin’s ‘Drill Baby Drill’.

        What was your point again?

        • Tamati

          Aside from perhaps lowering the top marginal rate, most of those policies look like a direct copy paste from the Australian Labor party.

        • Wayne

          Seriously, can you really compare the Nats to George Bush and Sarah Palin. Well, I guess you have, but the public will not buy it.

          The theme from many of the commenters here is that a significant part of the Nats (including the PM) are the equivalent of the Tea Party, but average New Zealanders are going to think that is ridiculous.

          Which is not to say there is not a real political contest between the Nats and Labour, but it is not about how much the Nats are like the Tea Party.

          • Pascal's bookie

            Read what I said Wayne. I said that the drill baby drill notion is Palin’s. Fact, right?

            And I said that the educational policies you cited are pretty much the same as those that GWB pushed. Do you disagree with that?

            The comparison with the Tea party isn’t however about policy. It’s about political strategy, and do you really think that ‘middle NZ’ is liking what they are seeing crawling out of the right wing blogosphere? You can deny that Cameron Slater has National Party links, but do you think people will believe you? Really?

            So far the push back against Slater has been confined to the back room and facebook. Why is that? The Fact is that many National party activists quite like Slater. Look at the KB comment section if you don;t care for whaleoil’s site. DPF has been very very muted in any criticism of Slater. Are you going to deny that DPF is closely linked to the National Party?

            So why the hesitancy to criticise Whale from anyone other the Boag, who has her own personal grudges against the man.

            Wha it looks like, is that Whale has just enough clout from what he has built to be usefull. Or at least a threat. Enough that he has to be kept at arms length, but vcan’t really be attacked or disowned. he’s too useful going into an election year, and too potentially damaging to mp’s futures. That’s the analogy to the Tea party.

            • Wayne

              The Nats were not associated with Palino’s campaign. No one at the senior levels of National endorsed Palino.

              Sure John Slater was the President (now a decade ago), but he made no particular effort to engage the Nats or the Auckland MP’s in Palino’s campaign, which was quite different from when John Banks ran in 2010.

              And as for Cam, well lets say his career with the Nats has been quite chequered. And he is no friend of the current president, or of Michelle Boag.

              So this whole issue says nothing about how the Nats will run the campaign in 2014, even though Labour might wish it were different.

              • miravox

                As Palino says there are subtle ways to endorse without saying so directly.

                Cup of tea anyone?

                • Wayne

                  But in this instance it did not happen.

                  Palino simply was not part of the Nat establishment, which considering his background as a recent immigrant from the US is not surprising.

                  The Nats were surprised as anyone that Palino got 100,000 votes. Len was clearly more vulnerable (and I don’t mean the scandal!) than the Nats knew. A more well known person with obvious longstanding Nat connections would have done much better.

                  • miravox

                    ” considering his background as a recent immigrant from the US is not surprising.”

                    Are you talking about Key or Palino there?

                    When Key came back he wasn’t met or endorsed by the National Party establishment? Because he certainly wasn’t part of it while he was off in the U.S.

                    According to Palino they meet twice in one week, three times in a month.

                  • Tat Loo

                    A more well known person with obvious longstanding Nat connections would have done much better.

                    Odd then that no one on the Blue Team stepped forward to make that campaign happen, and instead let an apparent outsider take the limelight. Unless the common National conclusion was that Len Brown was realistically not going to be defeatable this time around, or perhaps that he was an OK guy, so why bother.

                    • Ad

                      Called that

                    • Wayne

                      Well as I said, the Nats did not really see that Len could be beat, so no-one did step forward. And actually Len has done an OK job as Mayor.

                      And Miravox, I know you are being cute, but John Key had really done an extended OE, as indeed did David Shearer. So always connected to NZ. The situation is not remotely similar to Palino.

                    • miravox

                      Yes, I was being flippant, but the point holds that recently arriving in the country, with political ambitions, doesn’t preclude endorsement.

                    • greywarbler

                      Comparing OEs of Key and Shearer and finding them similar is not on. John Key’s time was embedded in the fabulously wealthy USA financial system of large corporate business with probably Mafia connections or methods, and knowing all about the dodgy plays with hedging funds and such.

                      There is a lot money around the UN too but David Shearer’s job was not in a
                      spot where he could make wealthy connections that could pole vault him up the multi-million scale.

                      Being part of the UN humanitarian team doesn’t slot one into the pin-ball world of playing with other people’s money and benefitting your own small group. The UN workers do have to at least touch or come within sniffing distance of real needy humanity.

              • Chris

                “So this whole issue says nothing about how the Nats will run the campaign in 2014, even though Labour might wish it were different.” …Wayne

                If that were the case why would John Key keep a dirt file on Labour MP’s in his top drawer?

                “Mr Key quipped that if he writes a book one day, people will find it “quite fascinating”.”


                • Anne

                  Having just come in on this little spat… you can be sure there’s a dirt file on National MPs gracing someone in Labour’s ‘top drawer’!

              • gobsmacked

                Wayne says: “And as for Cam, well lets say his career with the Nats has been quite chequered. And he is no friend of the current president, or of Michelle Boag.”

                But he is a very good friend of National’s next leader …


              • Pascal's bookie


                Lots of denials in there of things I didn’t claim.

                And no doubt National won;t be trumpeting connections with Whale, but they never really have, Collins aside, and the odd photo of cameron sharing a beer with various Cabinet ministers.

                But don’t be cute. Cameron and DPF are good mates, and anyone who can read can see how they play team sports during election campaigns. Do you really expect internet blof readers to believe that the National party’s messaging research guy doesn’t co-ordinate things in ways useful to National? And how many mps have been to the Whale Lusk schools again?

                He’s a rougue element to be sure, but I ask again, when’s the sister souljah moment ( ). So far all we’ve seen is the weak tea you’ve repeated here, that ‘he’s no one to bother thinking about, National hardly knows him’. But the problem you will have, if you don’t shut him down, is that he will be doing things for National whether National owns it or not, and the distancing will look ridiculous.

  8. captain hook 8

    In dear ole NZ the tea party would be a combo of the Bahhhhais and the Seventh day adventists.
    cool huh?

  9. Ad 9

    The current episode bears interesting parallels to The Hollow Men. Really conscious, funded, deliberate conspiracies. Bruce Jesson argued that this kind of thing has been going on long before in the conservative enbd of our politics.

    The week leading up to National Party conference we should see some indication of whether MickeySavage is right.

    So far I don’t see it; every time I see Collins perform she is relaxed and commanding. Same with English and Key. Sure Key isn’t his sparkly first-term self, but I can’t think of a Labour PM who was either.

    There’s not a squeak of disunity – National caucus are simply doing the right thing and keeping their heads down, preparing for their own counter-punch against the Labour conference coming up in Christchurch.

    To me the main results of the Auckland election and aftermath are:

    – Blogs have accelerated their eclipse of newspapers as a media power
    – Auckland Council has about the same political balance as last time
    – Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse will rise massively in stature as Brown relies on her completely to pull the women’s caucus into a working majority (and will likely use this as a base for a Mayoral run next time)
    – David Lewis will be seen as the kind of counter-puncher that Mike Munro used to be (underlines that Cunliffe doesn’t have one and better get one soon)
    And finally,
    – The Mayor’s Office rises in power to compensate (a) for their highly damaged Mayor, and (b) for the significant change in executive leadership going on.

  10. Rogue Trooper 10

    Johnny Was [Never] a good man!

  11. jafapete 11

    Is Rob Nesbit-Savage related? (Hope not, however moderate he may be.)

  12. Outofbed 12

    National party research unit digs the dirt
    slightly dirty- handled by kiwiblog ( more dog whistles the Molesworth)
    very dirty?- handed to Slater
    Anyone remember the Farrer and Slater’s campaign caravan in 2008?
    Twedledum and Tweldledee, FMJ!
    To suggest Slater is not part of National dirty tricks brigade is laughable

    • Tim 12.1

      Harder they rise …. harder they fall. The ‘learning’s’ most Masters of the Universe never seem to lesson

      • Rhinocrates 12.1.1

        “Don’t shit where you eat.”

        “Be nice to people on the way up; you may need them on the way down.”

        Wonder if Whalecum’s going to learn either late or too late?

  13. Lan 13

    Effect of “Tea Party” similar to rogue NZ “Corporation” ACC in that businesses are now making workers “casual” so they don’t have to pay for their health insurance, such as it is ..ACC levies business, but casual workers miss out on compensation for accidents at work etc because they don’t have a steady work record like civil servants who run ACC etc (same in USA presumably where govt workers get health insurance paid for). Bad luck for the increasingly casualised work force and savings for ACC and Govt which, now they’ve worked it out, don’t talk about handing ACC over the private sector any more. Easier and more profitable to charge huge Rego taxes. Just a thought ..starting with Obamacare unintended consequences (cf ACC intended consequences). And who is Minister of ACC?

  14. Papa Tuanuku 14

    You called Joyce and others moderate. Let’s not get sucked into thinking that the Hitler extreme of the Party might make Joyce and others reasonable or a less than positive influence. Joyce is every bit the extremist and has manouvered himself into a powerful position, and with expensive media training, pulls the wool over many eyes by appearing and sounding reasonable on TV, all the while ripping off the masses.

  15. Tracey 15

    My understanding is that cactus kate is more ACT aligned than national aligned and she has, at least in the past supported slaters site with donation.

  16. Sable 16

    Every party has it freaks and National has had more than its share. Eva Peron look alike Collins is a vicious little creep but she’s not alone. Jenny Shipley was a vicious old boiler too as was her best bud Ruth Richardson.

    The problem with National is its ugly neo-liberal agenda which naturally tends to attract fringe personalities. I guess there is a political party for everyone.

    • Populuxe1 16.1

      That must be why Labour has a neoliberal like David Parker as deputy leader

      • Sable 16.1.1

        Who said I’m a Labour supporter prophylactic 1. Nice try though. Back to shining your jackboots.

        • Populuxe1

          All the better to bring down on your face – forever. But seriously, I fail to see how a complete loathing of the intellectual dishonesty of neoliberalism makes me a naz1

  17. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not confuse Slater with the American Tea Party.

    The Tea Party is Conservative. Slater hates Conservatives.

    He is a Progressive through and through as indicated by his voluble support for marriage redefinition and his foul language and lack of manners.

    If there is any schism in the Nats it cannot in any way be compared to the rise of the Tea Party in the US and its rebellion against RINOs in the Republicans.

    Slater and all of National are far too left to ever be so compared.

    Cruz is the man, but he would regard National from Slater to Boague and or Lusk as a bunch of commies, and like me, wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire.

    • Lanthanide 17.1

      “The Tea Party is Conservative. Slater hates Conservatives.

      He is a Progressive through and through as indicated by his voluble support for marriage redefinition”

      Actually this study of 6 republican focus groups disagrees:

      The Evangelicals admire the Tea Party activists right now, but at some point, their relaxed, almost libertarian views on social issues may create new fractures. They are in a very different place, and they think the focus on homosexuality and gay marriage may be unhelpful politically.

      On gay marriage, Tea Party Republicans are apt to say, “who cars?” or it’s not the government’s business.

    • Murray Olsen 17.2

      I’d never thought of the TeaBaggers as a well mannered group, but I have always thought that a spoof Democrat campaign against gay marriage would be funny. I can imagine TeaBaggers chanting “The government will have to pry my gay husband’s dick from my cold, dead lips.”

    • AmaKiwi 17.3

      Redbaiter, do you know what that Confederate flag you are using means?

      To many Americans, both white and Black, it means, “Niggers belong in chains.”

      I am surprised the editors allowed such racism on The Standard.

  18. Pascal's bookie 18

    So if there is no division in the National party, and it’s all just a big old myth and a load of conspiracist nonsense, then how come, in this quote:

    Simply the National Party now has a group of its supporters who give every appearance of going rogue.
    Maybe that’s why one source has suggested to us that it was actually a National MP who first led to Len Brown being tipped off the week before the Council election that a major sex scandal was going to break.
    Other sources tell us that senior Nats who are in the loop have been tipping associates of the Mayor off as to what might come next.
    You get the picture from Michelle Boag this weekend on “Q+A”.
    “Whatever was going on with John Palino and the Slaters is nothing to do with the National Party.”
    If people like Michelle Boag have decided that Cameron Slater is toxic — and she probably concluded that a while ago, the next question will be whether his supporters in Parliament, particularly Judith Collins and Maurice Williamson also decide to put some distance between themselves and him.

    there’s all that stuff going on, with the sources, and the talking, and the dishing of the details about the counterinsurgency then huh?

    Richard Harman ain’t known to be liar, or to misrepresent sources.

    • gobsmacked 18.1

      Please don’t ban King Kong. Watching him scream “This isn’t happening!” is good entertainment.

      Hey Judith, Cam wants to know why you don’t call any more …

  19. Huginn 19

    Now here’s an interesting coincidence . . .

    Richard Harman quoting Michelle Boag on ‘Q+A’
    “Whatever was going on with John Palino and the Slaters is nothing to do with the National Party.”

    And whoever sent the texts to Bevan Chuang also warned her off ‘the slaters’, plural – as in:
    ‘You should be more careful what you share with the slaters . . ‘

    The italics are mine. For my sources, go to:

    • Lanthanide 19.1

      Not really. It’s a convenient way to refer to members of a family that share a surname. Also Boag may simply have subconsciously lifted the phrase from the reporting.

      • ghostwhowalksnz 19.1.1

        Boag and “the Slaters” are mortal enemies.

        It goes back to the time when Slater was Boags predecessor as National Party President.

        She found that Slater pere was clipping the ticket on donations to ‘ the party’. being the upright person she is , this was inexcusable so an ultimatum was given about ‘paying it back’

        This is the caliber of ‘the Slaters’

    • Redbaiter 19.2

      Has to be someone emotionally attached to Len Brown.


      • McFlock 19.2.1

        or maybe someone who saw a way to apply further pressure while also making the non-story more juicy for fools like you.

        I’m thinking someone attached to palino and/or slate.

      • karol 19.2.2

        WO and the frontpage post, suggest the texts were sent by Nats opposed to the Slater-Collins-Williamson faction – the texts all went to people in that camp.

        • gobsmacked

          Exactly, Karol.

          If a leftie and/or Brownie wanted to threaten, they might well have targeted Chuang/Slater and those involved in the Palino campaign. But they had no reason to include Brewer, Williamson etc.

          It’s an insider, for sure.

        • Huginn

          Yes, I think so too.
          Standardistas talk about ‘Whaleoil’ or ‘Slater/Lusk’ – ‘Slater/Lusk/Collins’ and so on. ‘Slater’ is always ‘Cameron Slater’.

          ‘The Slaters’ is specific, and it implies a historical perspective – I think that it’s likely to be a hostile insider.

  20. Pascal's bookie 20

    For folks like me who don’t do farcebook, Peter Aranyi has helpfully uploaded an image of a post today from Hamish Price which is not at all indicative of internal ructions in the National party so stop saying that!

    • Chris 20.1

      PB that was an interesting read.

      • Pascal's bookie 20.1.1

        Indeed. I think the most interesting part for me is that there is a lot in there that is potentially actionable. I don’t know anything at all about Price, but he’s been in the game long enough to know what he is saying, and what defamation is, and to post that anyway in the middle of a high stakes game.

        Neither fuck nor quarter is being given.

        Election next year. there are a few Auckland seats that are tight. Who out of the Auckland factions runs those campaigns is what is being fought over, as far as I can tell.

    • karol 20.2

      Also interesting that Price claims he first learned of the “Palino/Luigi plot to smear Len on 25 September” and and many others around Palino’s campaign also knew as Luigi was blabbing bout it – and at least one other person Price knows, outside the Palino campaign knew of it.

      So how many people could have sent those texts then?

      • Pascal's bookie 20.2.1

        I doubt we’ll ever know for sure, but I suspect there may be strong circumstantial evidence starting to come out soon.

        What’s the lust of possibles at the emoment:

        1)Someone on team Brown, to shut it down.

        2)Someone on Team Slater to get the affidavit, or serve as tactical story fodder.

        3)Someone on Team Boag to ry and shut it down before it all went pear shaped.

        I have no clue, but Slater seems to be moving from implying 1, to implying maybe 3.

        • miravox

          4) a good friend of Chuang who knows about the Brown affair, Luigi and the Slaters (and sees them for the slime they are), anticipates the fall-out and is keen on protecting both Chuang and someone else she cares about.

        • Tat Loo

          What’s the lust of possibles at the emoment:


        • toad

          Slater will always move from what gets him in the shit to what is inconclusive. Always!

      • Armchair Critic 20.2.2

        Many people could have sent the texts. The question for me is around whether Len Brown is naive enough to have sent that kind of a message by text. I seriously doubt he is that stupid.

    • gobsmacked 20.3

      They lied in the morning, they lied in the evening.

      John Palino, you are a liar. Please sue for defamation. Let’s hear from you under oath.

      • toad 20.3.1

        … and they lied at supper time!

        Palino is dog tucker. No further attention required to him, or to Luigi Wewege for same reason.

        The ones that need to be dealt to are the Slaters (both SleazeOil and Papa John) and Stephen Cook.

        • Sosoo

          Slater has been making a big fuss about claiming that he and Palino didn’t have any idea that there was a sexual actual affair before Monday. He’s made this point a few times, so there must be something very dangerous to him about admitting that he knew about the affair before that date. Problem is he said that he knew before then to the Herald a few days ago, so he’s caught in the open.

    • Huginn 20.4


    • NickS 20.5


      Though spamming that image on the sewer/whaleoil would likely result in immediate deleting of and subsequent bannage as Cameron tis but of delicate constitution.

      And I see the whaleoil blog is dead quiet, with not even the usual link-bait spam.

  21. Pascal's bookie 21

    And here’s something else that worth litsening to again in full.

    that interview with Mallard that had Collins so het up she almost sued him, but backed out at the last minute settling for an apology for things he said in the house, which were fully protected by parliamentary privilege of course.

  22. Huginn 22

    They’re still tarring and feathering Luigi Wewege on twitter #wewegecv

  23. Tat Loo 23

    Cam Slater is getting an online Q&A with…the National Business Review. No joke 🙄

    • newsense 23.1

      because of the very important need to remain objective and not take sides on the Len Brown thing

  24. aotearoean 24

    Sorry Len you wont stand again .Neither will Palino.Will be interesting when Palinos background is investigated.

  25. captain hook 25

    Len Brown will win a third term.
    He is not a de-balled capon like the scumblogger.

  26. Philgwellington Wellington 26

    Hey Tat,
    And you you want to get involved in this cess pit! You must be deranged! Or a naive saint..

  27. lez howard 27

    This whole afair is a blessing in disguise, its opened our eyes to the low life National supporters of Auckland well done Sperm oil

  28. Crunchtime 28

    So, it looks like the muckrakers have ended up with it all over their faces. Makes the National Party look (and smell) bad too.

    Len Brown’s mayoralty is damaged but he’s not out. What he can achieve this term may be reduced, and that’s not good for Auckland. I suspect he’ll be back for a third term too, have to wait and see…

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