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Next time …

Written By: - Date published: 8:59 am, September 21st, 2014 - 174 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, election 2014, greens, Kelvin Davis, labour, national - Tags:

National Herald

That didn’t go so well.

Three more years of National.  In what appears to be a resounding victory it has achieved what I thought was impossible, attained an outright majority in Parliament.  The only silver lining is that the Conservative Party did not get elected and hopefully this is the end of this particular grouping.

Obviously we will need to see the final figures but my preliminary impression is that the left were hit by a variety of factors.  Both Labour and the Greens went backwards by about the same proportion of votes.  I thought that both campaigns were good but obviously the framing of issues by National was more effective.

A few comments on Labour’s campaign.  I am finding it hard to believe how we could win five new electorate seats but still go backward in the party vote and I think that Labour will have to have a really serious think of this.  Winning Kelston, Te Tai Tokerau, Tamaki Makaurau, Te Tai Hauauru, and Napier yet going backward is a testimony to National’s campaign but a warning to Labour’s.  If I was in control of the party I would instruct every candidate to seek the party vote except for those in the most marginal of seats who I would instruct to seek two ticks.  One of Labour’s strengths, the quality of many of its candidates, is also one of its weaknesses.  And many Kiwi’s good intentions of sharing the love around is hurting us.

I thought Labour’s campaign was good.  David Cunliffe excelled himself.  He bet Key in the debates and with different circumstances and some clean air could have made a real difference.  He has had only 11 months in the job as leader.  He should remain and my feedback from members is that there is an overwhelming preference that he be given another chance.

The Greens also performed well.  The fact that their vote declined by about the same proportion as Labour’s suggests that the change was not campaign linked.

History was against us.  There has never been a two term National Government.  And it is the economy stupid, when things are going well economically voters do not change.  Of course New Zealand’s recovery is built on sand and rapidly increasing debt but such details do not seem to matter.

Mana is gone.  I always thought that their reliance on Kim Dotcom would hurt and this is now clear.  Dotcom was and is a huge distraction.  His abilities to show how this Government is bending and breaking our laws is admirable but his involvement in our political process has been nothing but a disaster.  His failure to show evidence of Key’s link to him last week was laughable.  National’s repeated linking him to Labour and the Greens was laughable but effective.

And National’s overwhelming financial resources showed clearly.  The wall to wall advertising in the last few days was incredible.

It still amazes me that Dirty Politics has not hurt National.  This is third world quality bullying and corruption.  Eventually it will hurt them and I suspect the next 12 months is going to be very uncomfortable for the Government but this will be no more than what they deserve.

I had a similar feeling in 1981 when National won a third term despite the destruction caused by the Springbok tour.  That was however its last.

It is time for all good progressives to start organising for the next election.

174 comments on “Next time … ”

  1. lurgee 1

    I had a similar feeling in 1981 when National won a third term despite the destruction caused by the Springbok tour. That was however its last.

    Yeah, but the right were still in power afterwards. Even more so than before.

    • Gosman 1.1

      Also National in 1981 barely scraped in whereas this is a better result for than the previous two outcomes.

  2. tanz 2

    This is not the end of the Conservatives, who did not try to buy an election. /All parties have donors, etc, National especially. Colin Craig said he will try again, and considering that his party is only three years old, his percentage of the party vote is very respectable. They are buiding and growing the party, so next time. Even if he had made it, John Key has an outright majority, so that is neither here nor there.
    Silver lining – Winston is not able to choose the government.

    • karol 2.1

      Conservatives, who did not try to buy an election.

      Craig was only in it because he has and used his own money to buy his way into politics.

      • Tanz 2.1.1

        He spent his own money on what he believes in – one law for all, a fairer tax system and binding referenda (asset sales?). What is wrong with that? He can not get that spent money back, and he is not filthy rich. Craig was also up against a hostile progressive MSM. His party polled fifth highest, much higher than Act, Internet Mana or the Maori Party. He did very well, and with more experience in the political arena, he will make it next time. So so close, good on him.

        He is a man of integrity and common sense, but these days, it’s all about personality and sound bites etc.
        All parties are bankrolled to a certain extent by donors and the like, but Craig put up his own small fortune and worked very hard. Integrity and an honest face to boot.

        2017, there is always hope.

        • karol

          How many workers on low pay, or beneficiaries, or even workers on medium pay can afford to pay for their own political campaign. Craig is buying his election just because he has more money than most. – a one man band. That is not democracy.

          • Tanz

            People did not have to vote for him, but quite a solid number did. No one forced them. Is that not democracy?

          • Nathan

            By that logic, the unions try to buy elections every time Labour run. Colin Craig put up his party, candidates, and policies, and the people decided. Democracy in action.

            • karol

              Labour’s affiliated unions represent a sizable section of workers – a large constituency. An they put their support behind a party that represents an even wider section of voters.

              And still you don’t get it Craig would not even be a player if not for his money.

              He is trying to buy democracy for his own ends. It is a far cry from democracy in action. Without his money, there would be no Conservative Party.

        • Draco T Bastard

          He is a man of integrity and common sense

          Described by the person closest to him in CCCP’s campaign as highly manipulative, i.e, no integrity at all. Same as john Key and national in that respect.

      • Brigid 2.1.2

        A $3 million hobby. Isn’t that gross!

      • Once was Pete 2.1.3

        What do you think the unions do?

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      This is not the end of the Conservatives, who did not try to buy an election.

      Actually, he did.

      • TheContrarian 2.2.1

        Spending your own money funding your own political party does not constitute trying to buy an election. How else would the party be funded if not by Craig?

        • Tanz

          He had a donor from Epsom donate, and quite big, plus other donations. All parties start somewhere and with someone, after all. He has picked up support and members from his policy platforms, not because he gave a lolly scramble.
          In NZ anyone can start a political party, it takes five hundred members and a can do attitude!!

          • Draco T Bastard

            I’m quite aware of what it takes to start a political and the resources necessary to actually do it which is why you In NZ anyone can start a political party is to simple. Sure, anyone can start a political party, only those with the necessary resources can make sure it will have a reasonable chance of it being successful.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Well, the RWNJs keep saying that KDC tried to buy the election. If that is true then CC also tried to buy the election. Can’t have it so that one tried to buy the election and the other didn’t when they both used their own personal funds to fund a start up political party.

          • TheContrarian

            Craig funded his own party with him as leader out of his own pocket. Dotcom funded someone elses party. Big difference bud.

            • Draco T Bastard

              KDC started his own party but couldn’t be leader as he couldn’t be elected due to him not being a NZ citizen. Other than that, no difference at all.

              • TheContrarian

                Bullshit there is no difference. Craig built up his own party and brought in people to run with him in his campaign. He funded himself. Dotcom started a party that pretended he had nothing to do with it while financially supporting a second party too.

                When Craig starts dropping cash on other parties as well as his own then we can talk.

                • Aklandnut

                  Craig built up his own party and brought in people to run with him in his campaign. He funded himself.

                  Dot Com built up his own party and brought in people to run with him in his campaign. He funded himself.

                  Your sentence holds true to them both

      • Lisa 2.2.2

        At least there was transparency with Dotcom; we know where the funding came from. What about all the private fundraisers the Gnats have where the donors are not disclosed? They aren’t shelling out money without expecting something in return.

  3. Dont worry. Be happy 3

    Dr Norman had it in one..the book had the wrong title….”Abuse of power” would have been harder to diss.

  4. Mate you are ??? – good campaign, all dotcoms fault, kelvin a good guy, history was against us – sorry imo that is all bullshit and laughable. Labour let everyone down yet again – too interested in protecting their own and not interested in the bigger picture – same old same old.

    • The Al1en 4.1

      MS has it almost spot on, especially re mip.

    • Ant 4.2

      In hindsight, it looks like Labour’s biggest mistake was not properly aligning with the Greens when they asked.

      • JanM 4.2.1

        Actually, I think their worst mistake was to speak in whole sentences rather than sound bites. They severely over-estimated the attention span and reflective qualities of a populace who spend their leisure watching reality tv

        • phillip ure

          as an aside..i think that unfolding policies over a long time..

          ..does not grab the electorates’ attention..

          ..labour cd have been better off presenting an election-package of policies..

          ..they really failed to gain any aura/air of ‘new’..

          ..of course the opposite of that is how national pretty much campaigned on no policies..

          ..englishs’ silences when asked what new ideas..if any..he had should national win a third time..couldn’t be a clearer indication of that..

          ..but it looks like drip-feeding policies to a short-attention-span electorate does not work..

          • Draco T Bastard

            as an aside..i think that unfolding policies over a long time..

            ..does not grab the electorates’ attention..

            ..labour cd have been better off presenting an election-package of policies..

            Sound bites helpfully listed with bullet points.

        • Anne

          Oh yes JanM. A fault that’s been with Labour for decades. I’ve been pushing this barrow of “over estimation” for years now. National treats the average voter with contempt, but the sheeple don’t realise it. Labour needs to start doing the same because – as we have just witnessed – it’s apparently the only form of treatment that resonates with them.

    • karol 4.3

      I don’t think it was all Dotcom’s fault.

      My feeling during election day, while pondering on matters, was that the left, especially Labour, just was not ready to govern. I started feeling that if the left did gain power, it would have a fragile hold and they/we would likely lose after one term.
      Labour needs a clean out of the old mid-1980s neoliberals, and a true start on the new direction that Cunliffe promised last year.

      KDC did contribute some positives, but, I think his establishment of a new party, branded with his own celebrity culture-style, ego was not helpful. It provided a distraction and a target. It takes longer than a couple of months, some money, and some top-down style rock star events to build a party and to connect with large numbers of the politically disengaged.

      He could have contributed the positives, without so much of the negatives. He could have done that by staying in the background, and providing some financial and technological support to existing party/ies.

      I have a lot of respect for Laila Harre, but I think her support of KDC’s party has shown a side to her that I’m not that keen on – the attraction to personality politics, a top down approach from an individualistic money man.

      The Greenwald-Snowden appearances were great, but KDC should have stayed off the stage, and allowed it to be hosted by more neutral presenters.

      My post this morning is focused on what the left need to do to ensure the context and culture for a left wing government, to ensure that they and we are ready to lead government.

      In the mean time, we still have some very good people in the House on the left. I’m sorry to see Hone go from the House. However, a lot of the strength of the Mana movement is outside the House – in Glen Innes, and feeding the kids in South Auckland, etc. These are the things to build on.

      • marty mars 4.3.1

        Yep I agree with pretty well all of that.

        My initial reply was to mickey…

        The left will come again of that i am sure but the damage, oh the damage will be extensive. Thus it is at the twilight of our industrialisation, exploitive, end of usable energy, polluting, overheating world and commodification times we live in – the first to stop partying is the party pooper and most just want to pretend everything is cool just like that nice mr key says.

        • karol

          Yes. The damage to come is heart breaking.

          The more reason for us to support the on-the-ground work of the Mana movement (state housing, feeding the kids) and the likes of Auckland Action Against Poverty, as well as Unite, the Union movement, environmental activists, anti-TPP campaigners, those who expose the drift to corporate support by the state surveillance agencies, etc.

      • Ant 4.3.2

        I agree Karol, IMP and Dotcom were going quite well, but Dotcom overplayed his hand, or got suckered into direct confrontations with Key and the media (either/or doesn’t matter in the end). If he had taken a back seat right before the campaign launch at springs it would have been a very different story — in hindsight that should have been read as a sign of distractions to come.

      • phillip ure 4.3.3

        re kdc/harre..

        ..harre has admitted that dotcom should not have featured so much in the int/mana campain..

        ..(he should have given the money..and then stood back..)

        ..and i agree it is not all his fault..

        ..(i think that both int and mana ran dogs’-arses of campaigns..i will expand on that later..

        ..strategically it had huge gaps..and given the funding..i am surprised at those gaps..

        ..and i think the gaze must turn to whoever was running the campaign..

        ..to me that absence of coherent strategy is one of the main reasons int/mana tanked..

        ..and i hope they front to explain themselves..)

  5. Dean Reynolds 5

    This is what Labour needs to do prior to 2017:
    1) Change the party name to ‘Social Democrat’ – ‘Labour’ is too restrictive a name
    2) Summarise our basic philosophy (full employment, etc.) in 5 bullet points & continually stress these
    3) All advertising hoardings to stress the ‘Party Vote’ at least as prominently as the candidate’s name
    4) Hire Mike Williams to raise funds (especially from businesses) & to get out the vote in West & South Auckland & Porirua. Thus is what he did successfully in 20005 & it gave us a win

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      You just suggested that Labour lose its name then your first bullet point talks about full employment.

  6. karol 6

    Micky some very helpful analysis.

    But, I fail to see how the Greens vote dropped the same as Labour’s. The Greens’ got about the same amount of votes on the night as in 2011. In 2011 they got 13 MP, and gained a fourth after special votes were counted.

    Someone in the comments last night said that National number of votes also dropped. Is that a fact? Did the total numbers of people voting go down?

    • mickysavage 6.1

      Hi Karol

      Percentages are the proportion of votes from last night compared to 2011. There are 270,000 specials to be counted though so this will change.

      Figures are

      National 1,058,636 (2011) – 1,010,464 (2014) – 95%
      Labour 614,937 (2011) – 519,146 (2014) – 84%
      Green 247,372 (2011) – 210,764 – 85%

  7. chris73 7

    As Mike Moore sais the people are always right

    The people of NZ sent the left a message but once again the left arn’t (won’t) listen so if theres one thing the Labour party can do is to get out and listen, not to the party faithful but to all the people of NZ and find out what they want because at the moment Labour is so out of touch with NZ its laughable

    • ploompi 7.1

      Chris, serious question, asked respectfully; suppose all the stuff that came out is true – a civil servant exposed to abuse and threats (especially when he hadn’t done what he was blamed for), exploiting the OIA process to get out information you want out and suppressing info you don’t, collaborating with a blogger to leak stuff to the media (if it’s kosher, why not come right out with it? why go about things so underhandedly?), the Donghua Liu misinformation, the mass spying – do you think that is ok? Would you think so if a party you didn’t like did that?

      • chris73 7.1.1

        For the sake of argument we’ll assume its all true. I suppose I can justify it by saying that National is still better for NZ and the economy as opposed to Labour/Green

        a civil servant exposed to abuse and threats (especially when he hadn’t done what he was blamed for)

        – This happens all the time unfortunately ref: Erin Leigh

        exploiting the OIA process to get out information you want out

        – All that happened was the information came out quicker than usual, the information wasn’t edited and the requests were actioned

        collaborating with a blogger to leak stuff to the media (if it’s kosher, why not come right out with it?

        – Is it any better than going out and hacking/stealing the emails of a private individual and profiting from them?

        the Donghua Liu misinformation,

        – That was Cunliffes fault, all he had to say was something likie “I deal with a lot of people in my 12 years as an mp so I may well have dealt with him in the past”

        the mass spying – do you think that is ok?

        – No I’m sorry but for the sake of argument thats simply not happening

        Would you think so if a party you didn’t like did that?

        – The big picture is that National is better for NZ and that the economy is moving the right way so I’m ok with it

        • ploompi

          Thank you for taking the time to reply.

        • Alan

          “I suppose I can justify it by saying that National is still better for NZ and the economy as opposed to Labour/Green”

          I think this is key. Despite all that’s happened, come to light, or been alleged in the last few months on Nationals side – They are still seen as the lesser of two evils.

          It’s hard to tell what was more evident last night – Labours failure or Nationals success.

          • chris73

            The lesser of two evils probably sums it up quite for me, Nationals bad but not as bad as Labour/Green

            Yeah it’d be nice if National good but you take what you can get

            • Draco T Bastard

              A corrupt government is always worse than an honest one especially when that corrupt government also mismanages the economy as National do.

              • chris73

                Being that only one MP has ever been convicted of corruption I’ll stick with National

                • Draco T Bastard

                  When the evidence shows that a number of a party’s MPs need to be convicted of corruption then sticking with that party just shows your own corruption.

                  • chris73

                    What evidence? Some smears by Hager isn’t evidence

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      There was no smears from Hager, only from National of Hager (and generally anyone who wasn’t them). Hager presented solid evidence. We know this because otherwise Slater wouldn’t be able to claim that it was all stolen.

                    • chris73

                      Well I’ll let the courts decide rather then what posters on the standard think

                      Sound good?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I’d love to let the courts decide – unfortunately, we don’t seem to be getting the necessary inquiry.

              • Murray Olsen

                And it worries me that so many of us can’t see that, DTB. The attitude shown by Chris73 is the exact attitude that ended up less than 10 years later with people freezing to death in trenches in front of Moscow. We have not matured as a people when we accept this second rate banana republic shit.

            • Akldnut

              For the sake of argument. we’ll assume its all true……blah blah blah
              “A serious question deserves a serious answer”

              “The lesser of two evils probably sums it up quite for me, Nationals bad but not as bad as Labour/Green”

              You’re fucking kidding me.

              So if I fuck you up the arse you’ll be fine with that, but only if I use lubricant I’ve got a small dick!

        • Once was Pete

          A few days before an election is not the way to have any sort of important national debate about security. Too emotionally charged, and any way Snowden et al should have avoided breathing the same air as Dotcom. They became irreparably tarnished by the association. Also, I believe there was quite widespread resentment about foreigners interfering in our electoral process.
          It would be great if more commenters followed your approach. Cheers.

      • Grantoc 7.1.2


        Sorry mate you just don’t get it.

        Whether it’s ok or not did not and will not matter to most NZders, for better or worse. That was one lesson from last night for the Left.

        If you (and the Left in general) want to put you’re energy into relitigating these matters, by all means do so, but don’t delude yourself that it will provide a pathway for the Left to regain power. It simply won’t.

        The Labour Party is now talking about listening to the public – well that means really listening to and respecting their points of view – not pretending to and not brow beating them with self righteous messages about what they should or should not believe and think.

        • chris73

          Listening to the Labour party means hearing what they want to hear and ignoring what they don’t

        • ploompi

          What I was trying to find was whether decency still prevailed. If Chris had said e.g. as long as my side wins nothing matters, I would have been sad. Chris is ok (if misguided) [smiley face]

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      The same is true of National.

    • You can already see the signs – Labour is still heavily in denial apart from one or two people. Shearer and Pagani talked a lot of sense this am, but people here like to bag them as well as any one else who disagrees with them.

  8. David H 8

    I am finding it hard to believe how we could win five new electorate seats but still go backward

    It happened because Labour were stupid!
    1: The said they could go alone
    2: They colluded with the Nats to Take out Hone
    3: Take any other reason you like KDC MSM

    The ones who will pay for this are the Beneficiary families that are still together (Like mine), it’s been a hell 3 years, and the next 3 will probably split mine and other families into single depressed people.

    • SpaceMonkey 8.1

      And the environment… RMA reform here we come.

    • anker 8.2

      David H @8. I am really, really sorry, so sorry to hear about that.

      Probably not much comfort to you, but I mean it.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.3

      2: They colluded with the Nats to Take out Hone

      I don’t think that’s entirely true but they certainly bowed to the pressure of National’s smear machine which is, IMO, just as bad if not worse.

      The ones who will pay for this are the Beneficiary families that are still together (Like mine), it’s been a hell 3 years, and the next 3 will probably split mine and other families into single depressed people.


  9. tc 9

    NZ needs a strong opposition that works as one. Had that happened there would be 3-4 seats on the left with Hone in, Dunne gone etc. Party vote shows the brand just aint cutting it.

    Yet again Labour brings knives to a gunfight, plays the ball whilst the nats played the man. Resources is an issue but the overly complex policy pleased the political junkies and bored middle NZ who were willing to swallow the MSM themes supplied by the hollowmens elves and sprites.

    Get used to Hooten, Farrar, Slater etc carrying on as usual, Hooten is already calling for DC’s head, as they just received an informal 3 year contract extension.

    • Wayne 9.1

      Maori voters in Te Tai Tokerau did not like the KDC link. And it cost Mana. If Labour had been seen to line up with KDC, their party vote could have well gone under 20%.

      As for the biggest loser, well in my view Lilia Harre. How the heck can she regain trust from the Greens (who she deserted) and from Labour. Her interviews today were simply amazing for their lack of insight.

      Best interview on TV today – David Shearer – who has every right to believe he was unjustly treated by his party. Sure he seemed to be very inarticulate when he was leader, and that cost him, but look how much better he is now. Will he do a John Howard?

      • Lanthanide 9.1.1

        Shearer was the victim. It was the idiot caucus that promoted him before he was ready.

        Because of that, Cunliffe only had a short time to get himself ready for the election and there was no going back. If Cunliffe had won the leadership instead of Shearer (although why he saddled himself with Nanaia Mahuta is beyond me) then Labour could have at least ditched him if he really turned out to be the turkey that some like to say he is.

        • Stephen

          “the idiot caucus that promoted him before he was ready.”

          No one forced him to become leader. He volunteered, and he fucked it up. Maybe he would be better now, but he has to own that choice to sta.d.

          • Lanthanide

            He volunteered based on the recommendations of the other members of caucus. The way Hooton tells it, it was at an election after-party in 2011 that a bunch of the media decided Shearer had what it took and should be leader.

            And, even if he had stood for it entirely off his own bat, caucus were stupid enough to go ahead with it.

            Remember, Shearer had just parachuted into Helen Clark’s electorate and had no actual political experience.

        • Colonial Viper

          BOOOM. Spot on Lanth.

        • Anne

          Spot on Lanthanide.

        • Hamish

          Shearer is no victim, he’s as culpable as the rest of those greasy pricks in caucus.

      • Brigid 9.1.2

        Laila didn’t desert the Greens at all. She had a contracted job with them, which she completed. They didn’t offer her anything else. She went on to the next thing which happened to be the Internet Party. That’s all.

        • karol

          Harre is very smart about politics, and does have a good grasp of a range of left wing issues and policies.

          However, with the Green Party, I got the impression that Harre wasn’t willing to start on the bottom rung, as all new candidates for a party do. This is the way it is, no matter what people have done in their lives previously. And on the left, it is about collaboration over ego and over personal ambition.

          The comments I read seemed to indicate that Harre thought she should be given a guaranteed step up the list due to her past performance. During the campaign, she seemed to me to have a bit of the prime dona about her. She also gave some very good speeches and was a very good debater on the hoof. But, she has her weaknesses.

          • phillip ure

            “.. And on the left, it is about collaboration over ego and over personal ambition..”

            that’s funny..!

            ..can’t say i’ve noticed that..over the years..

      • Anne 9.1.3

        Stop gloating Wayne. That’s all you’re doing. You know damm well Shearer was too new and inexperienced for the job.

        How do you feel knowing that the main reason you won is because your side ran a despicable campaign which bordered (at best) on unethical practices (at worst) illegality, and was aided and abetted by a group of shallow, ethically-challenged journos? Don’t answer because we know you’re feeling good about it. Your moral compass is no better than your erstwhile political colleagues.

        I wager a bet with you that the Key government doesn’t last the three years and your leader is forced to flee to Hawaii to avoid prosecution for being – to put it bluntly – a crook.

        • Wayne


          My fuller comments about the election result are on Pundit.

          “gloating”? I was simply making an observation about David Shearer as he is now.

          John Howard was a disaster when he was the leader of the Liberals first time round. But he got better after he lost the job and when the Liberals turned to him again, he proved to be a winner for them.

          • Anne

            Well in that case I apologise. But as far as I was able to ascertain, you kept pretty much clear of TS while the campaign was being waged and now, all of sudden, you’r back the day after polling day.

            Oh and btw, the bet stands?

            • Wayne

              Yes, I did keep clear (mostly) of TS during the campaign. It had become too fevered here and besides it was primarily being used as a broad left campaign site.

              I also make my primary contributions on the Pundit, which is less partisan that the main centre left or centre right sites. It therefore suits me better.

              Remind me of the Bet?

              • Hamish

                Less partisan suits you?

                I don’t think you understand the meaning of the word, old boy. To be partisan means you are prejudiced. And as an ex-National party minister, you are incredibly partisan.
                Perhaps that’s why you say Pundit suits you better, you perceive you can more easily manipulate the people there, whereas here most people can see your true, partisan motives.

      • lurgee 9.1.4

        If Labour had been less hostile to Mana over the last three years, then Mana would probably not have linked up with the Internet Party.

        Labour has to accept it is one part of a complex leftwing eco-system. It can’t win elections at 25%. It needs all those partner parties. And voters would prefer to know what the likely outcome is before hand – formal alliances and arrangements are the way to go, and make you sound far more organised that, “Well see how it all works out and sort it after the election.” That way the voters know what they are going to get and will be more likely to vote for it.

    • Take a deep breath! What do you think the left did to Key – played the man continuously and came unstuck because the electorate chose to trust Key.
      On your last point about Hooten, Farrar et al – what on earth do you think they do on this site?

      • lurgee 9.2.1

        As far as DP goes, it was and is acceptable. The honour and integrity of the man and people close to him has been called into question. DP was no different than Shearer’s ‘forgotten’ bank account or Cunliffe’s trust fund or Clark ‘forging’ her signature on a charity painting.

        These incidents called into legitimate question the moral character and trustworthiness of those people, and given the importance of moral fibre in leadership positions, it was legitimate.

        Only, DP was and is much, much worse.

  10. PaulL 10

    I think Labour need to look a bit deeper. If I saw a strong electorate result in some areas, but a poor party vote I’d perhaps think:
    – some of our candidates resonate well, and people like them. What do we have to do to have more candidates like that?
    – voters seem to like our people, but they don’t vote for our party. Does that tell us something about our policies?

    I think that many of Labour’s policies are too far to the left. One of John Key’s major discoveries (quite different from Don Brash, and not really that difficult to comprehend) is that you win from the centre and then gradually shift the centre with you. You need to promise almost no change other than a few carefully chosen headline policies – because the 50% of NZers who voted for things to remain as they are aren’t suddenly going to move across to a party that’s promising to change lots.

    I suspect, as always after these things, there’ll be a debate about whether Labour went too far to the left (i.e. this is all the left’s fault) or too far to the centre (i.e. this is all the centre-ists fault). My tip here would be that if Labour had gone too far to the centre they’d have won and now be wondering how to govern with all the centre-ist promises they’d made. That’d be a nicer place to be than here.

    • Olwyn 10.1

      It is very hard to define exactly where the centre lies and how you cater to it in a divided society. Carmen Sepuloni won her seat, Stuart Nash won his, and Kelvin Davies so far appears to have won his with help from the right. These results to do not point clearly in either direction. Not to mention, a party of the left cannot simply throw the poor under a bus for the sake of the so-called centre because the right has decided we don’t need to do manufacturing any more, and we don’t want to sustain people we don’t need.

      I still think that, despite this awful result, the split is still roughly half and half. The difference is that the divide is deeper, the winners cockier and the losers angrier. To be effective, Labour needs to regain the confidence of its base, and participate in the building of a cross-party left-to-centre-left movement. It is hard to bring the swing voters over to your side if you are not already a force to be reckoned with.

    • anker 10.2

      Paul @ 10.

      I think Labour had some excellent candidates, (I met quite a few). What happens though is people on the left think, “Well I will vote for x (Labour Candidate), then give my party vote to……….”.

      That’s just my opinion.

    • lurgee 10.3

      I’m fairly sure 50% of people did not vote National because they wanted to send Labour a coded message that they were not left enough.

  11. Tangled_up 11

    Yeah unfortunately the Conservatives will be back, and hopefully MANA will be back minus the IP.

    Since last election Labour consistently polled in the 30% +. Things started going down hill in the polls about 3 months ago. I think that this is because all National had to do is sell the idea that a vote for Labour is a vote for KDC.

    It’s been pointed out a few times already but it’s pretty much only Labour (from the left) that is going to take back voters from National and the appearance of KDC in NZ politics made this very difficult.

    • tc 11.1

      KDC V Key and hagers book needed to play out months ago in order for the campaigns to be about the issues and not questionable behaviour of senior govt figures.

      The nats used it to their advantage playing through the MSM with the same cast of characters and splintered the left party vote.

      well played national, credit where its due Labour need to take a concrete pill and harden up. Stop expecting a fair go in the MSM get offensive and ffs simplify the policies.

    • anker 11.2

      Tangled Up @ 11. Labour and Cunliffe went down in the polls around the time of the Dong Liu letter.

      • Colonial Viper 11.2.1

        Which we know now was a Dirty Politics op by the right wing.

        • Anne


          Here’s a typical comment I heard more than once in the last week of the campaign.

          I feel so sorry for John Key. He looks so tired and stressed. It’s not fair. It’s all that nasty politics from Labour and the Greens and that Dotcom man that’s causing it.

          I tried to point out that it was the other way around but they weren’t having a bar of it.

          Yesterday I did some door knocking in a ‘poorer’ part of the Shore. I came across a solo mum (she was the only person registered as living in the house anyway) who was so full of hatred when she saw my red rosette that I thought she was going to hit me. She slammed the door in my face saying something about never voting for a dirty party like Labour.

          Pure emotionalism. No rationale. That is the Crosby/Textor meme and Key has learnt to play it very well.

  12. Craig Glen Eden 12

    Well I agree Cunliffe did well however Labour’s Campaign was poor it was a repeat of the previous campaign when Goff did well personally but the campaign was rubbish lets start with the basics. The person who ran this campaign was the same as last time and he needs to go. Vote positive is not a message/ narrative its a pointless slogan.
    The billboards were ridiculous the Party vote Labour was so small you couldn’t read it when driving by, the picture of all the MPs was a mess it looked like from a distance that someone had tagged them even when they had not been tagged. So Labour had no message or imagery that linked. Policy dosn’t win elections messages do!
    Nationals two pronged approach is working a treat Labour has to get its message right. As a party Labour and I mean what’s left of the caucus has to start listening to its members. The leadership needs to stay as is Cunliffe and Parker, dont change it if Labour does it looks unstable. Labour MPs should live in the electorate’s they stand in and that goes for Cunliffe as well if you dont live in the electorate you are not part of that community simple. If Labour keeps standing people like Little in New Plymouth you will continue to get low Party vote. If and your family live in the area you have a way better chance for the community to get to know you if you are not one of them why would they give a toss if you fail. Labour needs to go back to some very basic principles and should NOT tell lies like “only a Party Vote for Labour will change the Government” If you tell lies and this is a straight lie why should I trust you or the Party that say’s it. Time for many to wake up in Labour and work more constructively with the Greens.

    • Jenk 12.1

      I agree with you Craig GE – unfortunately there are still too many old Rogernomes in the caucus and they’re not listening to the Labour members. And they’re too swayed by the rainbow element to think rationally and about the ordinary Nzer and Labour voter.
      AND they havn’t worked cooperatively with the Greens or other parties of the Left to get a good all-round result for the Left. Labour is too intent on going it alone – not good. We need to do much better, and we need to relate to the other left parties in a much more consultative and public fashion.

      • tc 12.1.1

        +1 but is labour capable of such radical surgery by severing it’s rogernomics lump and being united for 3 years behind DC.

        DC showed he can do it given the right message and support but will he get it ?

        The nat’s can afford to pay off their non beliebers, but just how does labour deal with their egocentric old guard.

        • Colonial Viper

          Due to internal political and cultural limitations, Labour has limited ability to agree on and make far reaching changes in a quick fashion.

        • phillip ure

          @ tc..don’t forget that the rightwing/neo-libs in labour won the policy-wars..

          ..hence no transformational-policies for cunnliffe to sell/inspire with..

          ..that factor in the defeat/voter-disinterest should not be underestimated..

      • Olwyn 12.1.2

        Right now I would feel more confidence if they would all shut up, and start to look soberly at how to turn themselves into a centre left party that is able to meet the challenges of the present time. This ought to include leaving Cunliffe in place at least until the dust has settled and a clear plan is formed. Instead, going by today’s press reports, they are straight into bickering and jockeying for position. As if the only change needed is to bend everyone to the point-of-view of whoever is speaking, and then hastily install new leader – preferably, whoever is speaking.

        • Stuart Munro

          Agreed – Labour should take vow of silence for a month – take some family time – and arrange a post-mortem out of the reach of media stirrers when everyone is a little less fatigued and thinking a little more clearly.

      • lurgee 12.1.3

        unfortunately there are still too many old Rogernomes in the caucus and they’re not listening to the Labour members

        These people have just been re-elected by voters. They are there legitimately. And have you considered they may have modified their positions slightly since the 80s? Perhaps you’re the one with the fixed ideological position, as you’re still lobbing the term ‘Rogernome’ around. You sound like some antiquated British blimp mumbling about darkies and the empire.

        The last thing needed is to lose some of our most experienced MPs who – like i tor not – are recognised by and appeal to voters.

    • Karen 12.2

      I agree with everything you say except the living in the electorate bit. Cunliffe won the electorate vote but, like nearly every other Labour candidate that won their electorate vote, lost the party vote.

      The design of the billboards was really poor. They did not emphasize party vote Labour, the Vote Positive was the dumbest slogan ever, and they were ugly to look at. The television ads were also amateurish and uninspiring. The cards delivered to potential Labour supporters looked like real estate pamphlets.

      Great that Labour had well thought out and fully costed policy, but most people that vote aren’t going to read it. You need a few clear policies that can easily be understood that you push continuously on billboards and in advertising. They need to be aspirational.

      When releasing policy make sure you have a really good simple version as well as the detailed press release. Check for any discrepancies (I’m thinking baby bonus here) and make you have good real life examples to illustrate the benefits (eg housing policy). Don’t issue important policy in the last week of a campaign that is being overshadowed by the Dotcom circus.

      I also think the free doctor’s visits for over 65s as the cornerstone of the campaign launch was a mistake. I understand the justification for the policy, but when so many children are living in poverty it seemed to be targeting the wrong demographic

      • kenny 12.2.1

        Agree with the above. When David Cunliffe was asked by Mike Hoskings during the last debate on Wednesday ‘Do you think he (Key) is lying?’ Cunliffe should have said ‘Yes’ instead he obfuscated about more evidence, which implied that Key was maybe right in what he said.He needs more mongrel in him.

        Also the last party political broadcast on Friday was pathetic – looked like an amateur attempt by a class of students, the lighting was poor and it was not inspiring at all.

        The campaign manager should be ashamed of that offering.

  13. mike 13

    Let’s hope Cunliffe stays to guarantee a 4th term for National!

  14. Enough is Enough 14

    I don’t think anyone can say Cunliffe did a good job while leading Labour to their worst result since any of us were born, and overseeing the vote collapse.

    This is an absolute disaster of a result.

    Especially in light of the fact National is clearly corrupt and spent 5 weeks defending their hideous record.

    Something major has to change.

    • Yoyo 14.1

      Agree. If that’s the standard for success, it’s no wonder Labour weren’t elected. As a country, we want to do well, not do close to the worst ever and pretend we’re doing well.

    • Craig Glen Eden 14.2

      Cunliffe only made one mistake as did Goff each was a minor thing but was played upon by a biased media. The parties major problem has been the caucus disunity towards one another and to the members. Its time that caucus listened to its members instead of thinking they know best.

      • Ant 14.2.1

        I can’t see any subsequent leader having a perfect run, it’s unrealistic to expect that and is an impossible standard to reach.

        Key makes heaps of mistakes, it’s all about how National successfully commands the focus of the media, they point the media follow.

      • Draco T Bastard 14.2.2

        Its time that caucus listened to its members instead of thinking they know best.

        I’m reasonably certain that that will happen sometime after hell freezes over. Labour are not, and haven’t been, a party of the people since 1984. They, just like National, are a party for the rich.

      • lurgee 14.2.3

        Cunliffe and Labour made heaps of mistakes, from “I’m sorry for being a man” (agree with the sentiment, but what a stupid thing to say!) to not knowing CGT policy inspite of knowing Key would likely attack it, to announcing too much policy during the election when it could not be digested, to attacking allies, to announcing major policies on the same day as Dotcom’s ‘big reveal’ and so on, endlessly.

        For me, the most glaring error was allowing Key to describe his government as ‘centre right’ and I can’t remember him being challenged on it:

        “Be honest, John, you’re not really leading a centrist government at all. What about … ? What about… ? What about …. ? These aren’t things the majority of New Zealanders agree with. They’re right wing, ACT policies, John.”

        It would have cost nothing to do this.

    • lprent 14.3

      Yes. The habit of the Labour caucus full of overblown egos to think that it’d work better with someone else in the chair. They need to concentrate on allowing their political machine to get fixed while they concentrate on holding the government to account, staying on message, and babykissing

  15. whatisis 15

    I believe the psyche of the average kiwi has a lot to do with the results.

    1. The Moment Of Truth and it’s message from foreigner trouble rousers caused blowback.
    2. The police raids in Australia on the TERRORISTS in our midst caused a fear vote swing to the right.

  16. les 16

    critical moment….’I am sorry I’m a man’………goodbye to male voters.

    • anker 16.1

      Les @ 16 Maybe goodbye to male voters and maybe hello so some women, I don’t know. All I know is that the media picked up on that (and not Labour’s commitment to fund refuges and went to town.

      The msm is I believe a big part of what lost us the election………….just look at how they turned on IMP after Pam C’s “puffed up little shit comment. Not that they were ever entirely favourable to them.

      Last night I threw three pistachio nuts at our t.v. when tv. 3 interupted DC speech and we crossed to Mathew Hooten banging on about DC has to go and Pagani not doing too much better.
      This is a major part of the problem for Labour.

      • Colonial Viper 16.1.1

        Les @ 16 Maybe goodbye to male voters and maybe hello so some women, I don’t know.

        Doubt it. Which party are these new women voters going to come to Labour from???

      • lurgee 16.1.2

        We know Labour / the left already has stronger support among women than men. That needs to be changed. A stronger masculine appeal would win over more votes than trying to find the women who aren’t currently supporting the left.

  17. Foreign waka 17

    It was not surprising that labour did not get a better result, but it is very interesting that the greens didn’t either. Watching form afar, I belief that labour has serious trouble inside their camp. There are the “old” hands that do not want to let go of power, no matter what. Even if it means to tank a whole campaign by no shows to convey disapproval whit whatever the “others” say. It is time to disband the party and start anew. I like the already mentioned name “Social Democrats” as it encompasses the two great issues of our time. If a new start is made, chances are far greater then they are now, especially if some pragmatism is injected.
    As for the greens, I wonder whether their comments on wages was the point of no return for some sitting on the fence. I suspect that there are a lot of younger entrepreneurs that look for a greener cleaner NZ, not at least that it helps sell the brand. But being in business also means profit at all cost and cost means labour cost. I am happy that Winston got into Parliament as he will at least make the right noises before some shameful policy is passed. You can say many hings about this man, but he always stood his ground and does not waver in his convictions.

  18. bearded git 18

    Nicely written Mickey. Agree entirely with the kdc distraction bit-I think kiwis just thought “sod this, rich germans trying to buy our democratic process; I’ll stay with the flawed devil I know”.

    I’m lucky enough to be in Guatemala and so can’t see Henry, Espiner, Hoskin etc etc crowing over the result. Looking at the major corruption and persistent violence reported in the papers here even Liar Key doesn’t look that bad.

  19. Yoyo 19

    It was the dirty politics of the left that killed it. Look at how the right ignored the Cunliffe rumours. They know dirty politics does not work.

    • chris73 19.1

      I’m glad the right didn’t mention any of those rumors, Cunliffe never promoted himself as a “family man” ala Len Brown so the rumors didn’t need to see the light of day

      What someone does behind the scenes is their own business

      • Yoyo 19.1.1

        Absolutely. I’m pretty sure if it had been key though the left would have gone nuts.

        • chris73

          Of course they would have, vote positive was treating the voting public as if they had the memories of a goldfish

          Labour need to understand they can’t just say any old thing they like and expect the voting public to accept it

    • Draco T Bastard 19.3

      The abuse of power and corruption is all from the right. Your comment, in trying to re-write reality, is a case in point.

  20. Jimmie 20

    As was said after 2008 & 2011, Labour supporters have to face a couple of simple facts.

    1 They lost (why?)

    2 The Nats won (why?)

    Answer these two questions and you’re part way on the way to success.

    To me as a Nat supporter the glib partisan answers that have been thrown up by the left over the last 6 years excusing their poor performance have been laughable and akin to the ostrich head in the sand trick. And the results last night speak for themselves.

    If I was on the Labour executive and was mulling over a post mortem and plan looking towards 2017 I would look at the following points:

    1 The Labour/Green emphasis doesn’t work for Labour. Moderate voters get scared by the Greens and run to the Nats or NZ First. Labour needs a much higher party vote and need to suck votes from the Greens so that they are barely over 5%. (See Act as an extreme example on the right) By doing this the moderate voters will be assured that the Green influence on any Labour government will be minimal.

    Also think of a mix of paint. A little green mixed with red stays mostly red. When its closer to half and half then the final colour throws to green a lot. This scares non green voters.

    2 Promising many extra taxes and government spending just after the country came out of the GFC and earthquake went down like a lead balloon. Kiwi’s don’t mind paying a reasonable amount of tax however they also like to keep their take home pay.
    Also the CGT, was laughable, especially the rule that you had 1 month to sell it after putting your grandparents in the ground otherwise you got whacked was so stupid I’m surprised it ever was published.

    3 MP renewal (or lack thereof). No offence but a caucus of dinosaurs (think Goff/King/Mallard etc.) doesn’t come across as a new generation of leadership for the country = too busy still fighting yesterdays battles – I mean grizzling about the Springbok tour of 81 for goodness sake and resurrecting moas???

    4 Policy mix/affiliate power. Boil down Labour’s policy to a nutshell. It was to drag NZ back to the 1970’s in regard to state ownership and control over every thing. This obviously reflecting the viewpoints of the union affiliates who are the main bankroll for the party and so get a major say in what policy is put forward.

    The trouble with this is that by Labour saying going back to the 70’s is the answer then it is telling kiwis that the pain of the mid 80’s reforms inflicted on them by Labour was a mistake. This is untenable to kiwi voters who were sold a story back then that the reforms were needed to keep the country from going bankrupt.

    Labour needs to improve their fundraising so that they are not so beholden to unions who only represent 15% or so of workers and are therefore out of touch with the majority of working NZ.

    5 Leadership. David Cunliffe has fallen into a trap of being an actor. Trying to be a different person to different people. This comes across as being insincere and almost fraudulent. (Especially pretending that he is an average middle class living in a doer upper) If he is going to survive he needs to decide who he is and stick at this regardless of if some people love him and some hate him.

    Also he shouldn’t be ashamed of being rich. Good on him and his wife for being financially successful in their lives. If the son of a preacher man can do this then he can show folk with no confidence that they can have achieve as well.

    Lastly Cunliffe needs to remember that actions have to match his words. Hassling the nats about secret trusts and then using one yourself (and not disclosing all the donors) was the height of hypocrisy and started his leadership off on the back foot.

    6 Target voters. Labour has made its mission in life to woo beneficiaries and low paid workers. The trouble is these group of voters are too small to win an election. (And getting smaller with reductions in the unemployed and single parents)
    Also by promising major financial help to these groups Labour tends to alienate the middle class and moderate voters who see the welfare system as more of a temporary assistance system rather than a long term lifestyle choice.

    Also with Aussie as an easy alternative with low paid workers, many see emigration as a more practical option to voting for a pay rise with Labour.
    Also most examples thrown up in the media showing poverty tended to be partisan hacks or from their own (facebook) admission their poverty was due to poor lifestyle choices rather than absolute poverty from benefits/wages being too low.

    7 Identity politics. With Labour consuming much of their energy on pushing for extra rights for minorities they push themselves out of touch with most kiwis who can’t see any good justification for it. Kiwi’s want to see a government focused on the bigger issues of economy/health/education rather than trying to push the barrow of what ever minority fad happens to be the flavour of the month.

    8 Party Unity. A situation where the Labour leader was not backed by the majority of his caucus is laughable. The caucus are in the know and can undermine Cunliffe in so many ways via leaks etc. Either replace Cunliffe with someone who enjoys the full support of caucus or get rid of those in the caucus who aren’t part of the team. Either way some major blood letting has to occur.

    Summary. Once these points (and any others) have been worked on then a plan of reform must be implemented over the next year. I would suggest it will involve a lot of resignations/by elections/pain plus a total change in direction for Labour back towards the center of politics. If the keep going as they do the few Labour supporters that are left will give up and Labour will fall backwards into NZ First/Green territory on a permanent basis.

    But I’m just a evil Nat supporter what would I know eh?

    • chris73 20.1

      These are very good points but, of course, they won’t be acted on

    • sabine 20.2

      Well you are very happy then to own the next three years. After all you voted for them.

      Fact is that John Key will not be a more effective Prime Minister than he was up to know. He will still work with his Possee of Gerry Bronwlee, sell of all state assets Blignlish, Justice for some but not for all Collins, the social welfare queen Bennett, is our children learning Hekia Parata and so on and so on.

      National and their voters will own it all….no more harking back to the evil Clark years. It is all yours.

      have fun, enjoy the ride and don’t forget to wear a helmet just in case.

    • Hanswurst 20.3

      Well, with the exception of unity and getting rid of some of the Labour caucus’ old guard… we’ve already got a National Party, thanks, and if Labour did much of what you’re advocating I would never vote for them. The Labour Party is quite right-wing enough as it stands (although it has been worse), and just aping National and waiting its turn would be further disenfranchising its constituency.

      • Jimmie 20.3.1

        Well the answer is simple. You vote for the Greens and let the more moderate Labour supporters come back to the center.

        Just depends how bad the Labour brand has been hit. At what point does it become a point of no return regardless of what changes are made?

        • Hanswurst

          That is the simple answer if you are happy to have the political spectrum drift towards the right. If you don’t want that, it’s just a very poor answer.

    • Doughty 20.4

      Great article/comment Jimmie, some great points would you mind if I put this on my website as an article?

  21. Draco T Bastard 21

    And National’s overwhelming financial resources showed clearly.

    All the left parties need to stop whinging about this. I’m sure we have more members than National and that is where our resources flow from. As I’ve shown, with a small weekly charge for being a member Labour could easily equal if not exceed the funding that National has. The other left parties may not have the same membership as Labour but a few dollars per week from each member would put them all on a strong financial footing capable of getting their message out.

    • sabine 21.1

      there is no money left for a small weekly charge Draco. For many there is not enough for the basics.
      Politics are becoming a game for the rich and the I’d like to think i am / going to be rich crowd. The rest is buys carving out a living at minimum wage.

  22. cardassian 22

    A lot of issues with Labour’s grassroots system in this campaign as well.
    I know of members that were considered good enough to hand out flyers but weren’t even told when the candidate was coming to the area to speak.
    Like how hard is a mass email asking local members to attend?
    If they can’t even communicate effectively with their own members they certainly can’t communicate effectively with the average person.

  23. Mt Wellington Thinker 23

    I agree with Jimmie that NZ needs a strong Labour party as an alternative Government.

    I disagree with Karol completely on the way to do this. The further left the Labour party goes the less likely they are to succeed. The far left has the Greens so if Labour tacks further left as suggested the more that will help John Key.

    • chris73 23.1

      Well its not rocket science is it, let the Greens and any of the other parties that cater to drop kicks be the radical parties and move Labour to the center so everyone on the left spectrum has someone to vote for and more importantly a reason to vote

      Oh and Labour drop the pretense and just admit you and the Greens are joined at the hip

    • Draco T Bastard 23.2

      The problem with what you say is that reality has a radical left-wing bias. Going further to the right is delusional. Hell, even staying where we are is delusional.

    • lprent 23.3

      The reality is that the Green social policies are, and have been for several elections, more centrist than Labours.

      I think that you are having difficulties distinguishing fact from myths of the right wingnuts…

    • sabine 23.4

      the greens have run a most corporate friendly campaign . nothing far left of them.

      if we want a Natioanal light for the national voters that feel homeless it is up to them to create it.

      Labour should go as far left as possible.

  24. Nathan 24

    Nicky Hager and Rawshark had some influence in the left’s demise here. As well as providing a distraction from the campaign and policy, the Dirty Politics saga left citizens in the position of weighing up disclosure for the common good vs. theft of private information via hacking. Who likes thieves?

    • joe90 24.1

      Indeed, who likes thieves or men who have never been held to account for their role in currency manipulations which cost the NZ economy close to a billion dollars.

    • anker 24.2

      Nathan @24. I wonder how many of those people who weighed up theft v common good have read dirty politics.

      Have you? Honestly. Because any Nat or Act person who read it would need to be very concerned about Whale Oil manipulating candidate selection/mps.

  25. SDCLFC 25

    How’s that denial going aye.
    In 1981 Labour gained a majority of the popular vote.
    It’s Labour that needs to do something and that needs to be change.
    Our MPs are good, that’s why they got voted for (lets not forget two well fought losing battles in Auckland Central and Ohariu).
    Voters like Labour people but not the Labour party.
    If Caucus rejects Cunliffe then the party would do well to recognise the view of those voted for by middle New Zealand.

  26. sabine 26

    Anyone wants to discuss the million plus peeps that have not voted at all?

    National are fucked as far as I am concerned.
    Their issues of dropping milk prices, an rock’star economy based on the re-build of a broken town, and spiralling debt are still there and will now have to be owned by national as they now can not point their fingers any more to previous labour governmental decisions.

    How long until the National voters that voted for stability are going to dislike the possibility of having to compete on the Job market with Prison labour?

    How long until they have to live with the possibility of Key supporting Obama in the glorious war in the middle east?

    How long until the National Voters will wake up and realise their country has been sold of to the highest bidder one farm at atime?

    How long until some National voter will wake up to Bennett’s rule of sending beneficiaries up and down the country under the guise of getting Jobs and it is one of their 18 year olds?

    How long until some National voter will wake up and realise all their assets have been sold?

    And then what? could have would have should have?

    No labour has no need to go right just to appease those National voters that are slightly uncomfortable with National. Labour needs to build a grassroots movement, and redefine the Labour movement of the 21st century.
    We have to come to grips that 40 hour work week with all the trimmings is only a dream, those that work as contractors, those that are casuals and temps, those that hold three jobs to make end meets. These are the challenges of tomorrow. And Labour needs, and Labour will adapt.

    Peeps did not vote for John Key, they voted for “Stability” and not ‘changing the course’ as they are really afraid of having interest rates increase on their mortgages, afraid of maybe loosing their jobs, afraid of not going ahead.

    they voted for their perceived interest without looking any further than their own plate.

    • Murray Olsen 26.1

      Labour needs to build a grassroots movement, sure. Sadly, I don’t think they can any more. They have to stop trying to destroy those that are building one.

  27. higherstandard 27

    “If I was in control of the party I would instruct every candidate to seek the party vote except for those in the most marginal of seats who I would instruct to seek two ticks.”

    Greg if you were in control Labour would likely be more fucked than they currently appear to be.

  28. les 28

    Cunnliffe was a big disappointment.I thought he had the smarts to beat Key,but he was shown up in the debates .Voters need simplicity.Simple messages to centre NZ.The CTG was a perfect example of what not to do campaigning.Save it for govt.I thought Shearer’s weakness was his um,er, hesitancy when confronted but he may be the only choice as he has ‘good bloke’ aura.Looking at some recent world leaders ,voters are very forgiving of faux pas so long as the candidate has everyman appeal.Robertson is easily the best debater ,articulate and competent,but being gay ,unfortunately is not something mainstream voters are comfortable with.

  29. Lorraine 29

    Typical that the likes of Phil Geoff and David Shearer have there knives out for David Cunliff which is ironic as he was given a poison chalice by them in the first place. He was just the one at the top and took the final hit.
    The lack of teamwork in Labour and their position further left has made them not relevant to most kiwis. Although I voted Labour I didn’t think what they offer did much for me. The whole party came up with their policies and David Cunliff delivered things very well. It was the policy formation that was too focused on poor with families and not at all on middle class and poor without families. To a lot of NZers child poverty is related to selfish parents who parent poorly putting their own boozing, drugs and cigarette smoking etc before food and clothes for their kids. This is not true for a lot of people but that is how a lot of national voters see it.
    Of course Cunliff will be the sacrificial lamb as those around him are all prepared to find a scapegoat. Labour need to get real about their demise though. Cunliff had very little time to change things and he was straightjacketed by those around him.
    NZ’ers did not want Kim.com, Hone and Colin Craig and by voting national they got rid of all them. National did a great job of associating Kim.com and Hone with the left and it cost Labour and the Greens.
    Maybe labour has had it’s time and another left party without the baggage will come up the centre left.
    I think David Cunliff apart from the odd gaff (sorry for being a man) did extremely well. He debated well. Could Shearer or Geoff have done better. No. They are pathetic blaming Cunliff for the decline they were involved in creating. If either of them are put in charge it would be a backward step.

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