Q&A with Andrew Little

Written By: - Date published: 2:45 pm, October 12th, 2014 - 188 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, labour, Politics - Tags: , , , ,

I’d like to say thanks to the Standard for hosting me today. I’ve always enjoyed robust political meetings and I’m a firm believer in fronting up and answering the hard questions.

Labour is a great party. Our movement’s values are values that New Zealanders share – we’re a party and a nation that believes deeply in everyone getting a fair go and working together.

But make no mistake, to beat National in 2017 we need to build a united Labour team: not just within caucus but between caucus, the party, our affiliates, and our supporters.

We need to listen to New Zealanders, to engage with their issues. To campaign alongside New Zealanders as equals and to grow our allies and our support.

That’s something I have a lot of experience in. As the leader of the EPMU for 11 years, I undertook a careful and strategic reshaping of the union to turn it into a campaigning organisation that engaged powerfully with the public on the big issues – better wages, more jobs, and economic and social justice. I also engaged constructively with many New Zealand businesses, big and small and understand the need for a positive environment to generate jobs and pay good wages.

Labour needs a cohesive and inclusive plan to rebuild our movement and restore New Zealanders’ trust in us. We’ve always been the party that puts people first and takes the long view. It’s time to make those principles the core of how we organise ourselves.

I’m going to release a more thorough outline of my plans for rebuilding our movement in the near future but I have made it clear that one part of that will be renewing our policy.

We have great policies, but there are a lot of them, many are complex and we didn’t communicate them well to New Zealanders. We must review and simplify without losing sight of our vision and values. This is the debate we must have as a party and as a movement.

I have real concerns about our policy to raise the age of superannuation. Too many Kiwis already work long hours for not enough pay. It is unfair to ask them to work two more years.

We must also never lose sight of the fact that Parliament is just one part of a much broader Labour movement. Our members, our supporters, and our affiliates are everyday New Zealanders from all walks of life and from communities across the country and have valuable talents and experience. We must work to bring our movement back together and grow it.

Labour’s power has always been in its people. We need to unify and focus that power and together we must use it to make sure every Kiwi gets a fair go. Being a modern and democratic movement is how we win.

Andrew Little

188 comments on “Q&A with Andrew Little”

  1. Richard RAWSHARK 1

    [lprent: Transferred from other post. ]

    Hello Andrew,

    What is your vision of the Labour party under your leadership if you win.

    Rate yourself as a debater amongst the candidates. can you get the answers from John key at question time better than they could?

    What is your opinion on opening up more avenues for Labour to get party funding? Do you think the party does enough to garner support for the cause? What can you do about that?

    Oh and are you an opinion seeker or an opinion provider would you say.

    Kind regards

    Richard Kulla

    • Andrew Little 1.1

      I want to see a party that is reflective of New Zealand and confident about addressing the real issues facing us as a country: growing inequality, intolerable child poverty, and our environmental reputation at risk.

  2. Andrew Little 2

    Hi folks, happy to be here and looking forward to answering your questions.

  3. AmaKiwi 3

    Hi, Andrew.

    Our country is an elected dictatorship. The government of the day has no qualms about passing laws the majority of the people oppose. (Asset sales, GCSB, Auckland Super City, etc.) Labour governments do the same. (Rogernomics, GST, etc.)

    IMO, making our system more democratic is essential lest parliament and MPs fall further into disrepute. Participatory democracy is critical for our social cohesion and economic well being.

    My preferred solution is binding citizen initiated referendums.

    Your opinion, please.

    • Andrew Little 3.1

      We do need to make changes to MMP to ensure a fairer representation in Parliament. I don’t agree with binding referenda. In places like California we’ve seen the results of binding referenda and they’re not pretty.

      • AmaKiwi 3.1.1

        In Switzerland we’ve seen a country at peace since 1812, socially very advanced, and more prosperous than its neighbors for over a century.

        • Joel 3.1.1.1

          You mean Switzerland, where women didn’t get the right to vote until the 70’s?

          That was a direct result of the failings of Binding Referenda

          • KJT 3.1.1.1.1

            You mean “Switzerland”, where, without binding referenda, women would not have had the vote until at least the 90’s and probably not even, now!

            That is the problem when you repeat memes without thinking.

            Compared to New Zealand where, if we had binding referenda, women’s suffrage and homosexual law reform would have happened sooner.

            As usual, in both countries the majority are much wiser and more progressive than politicians.

      • KJT 3.1.2

        In places like New Zealand we have seen the results of the absolute power of a few people in Parliament and they are not pretty. Fixed it for you.

        A question for you Andrew. Does the lack of support for David Cunliffe, who was fairly and democratically elected as Leader by the party show a contempt for democracy from the Labour caucus?

        (A contempt for ordinary people and their right to decide their own destiny which extends through far too many politicians, in all parties).

  4. r0b 4

    Hi Andrew

    Thanks for chatting with us here at The Standard.

    Which of Labour’s policies would you keep, which would you drop? Any new policies in mind?

    Thanks
    Anthony (r0b)

    • Andrew Little 4.1

      As I’ve said in the post, we need to review our policies without losing sight of our vision and values. I do personally have some issues around raising the superannuation age.

      It’s not about new policies, it’s about good policies.

      • r0b 4.1.1

        I appreciate the limitations of a short answer medium, but I was certainly hoping for a bit more detail!

        At the moment you risk being categorised as the “anti-policy” candidate, so I think you’re going to need solid answers to these policy questions.

        Would you scrap the capital gains tax?

  5. Te Reo Putake 5

    Hi, Andrew, you’ve said all our policies need to be reviewed. Do you have a clear vision for what should stay and what should go? And would you be open to more membership input to policy selection?

    Cheers, TRP

    • Andrew Little 5.1

      Voters want to hear policies that will fix today’s problems and set us up for a strong future. Those are the principles we need to review our policies on, because we don’t get to do anything unless we’re in government.

      Members having input into policy setting is vital.

  6. blue leopard 6

    Hi Andrew,

    How would you describe the difference between a Labour* governed NZ to a National governed NZ to someone who believed they are both much the same?

    [*a Labour party that you were the leader of]

    It is always good to see MPs communicate via posts on the Standard, thank you for doing this. 🙂

    • Andrew Little 6.1

      A Labour government I lead would make sure everyone gets a fair go: people at work, business owners and entrepreneurs, people working for the good of the community, families. People need to know the odds aren’t stacked against them, and that others aren’t getting an unfair advantage.

      National governments govern for the few.

  7. Hi Andrew,

    As a New Plymouth candidate you must know that many oil field workers are struggling to find jobs. Although the economic climate is partly to blame, environmental regulations have played a big part in shutting down exploration in NZ. The cost of obtaining an onshore drilling permit is now in excess of $100,000.

    If elected Labour leader, would you support any plans to wind back National’s recently introduced regulations that have so severely disincentivised the oil exploration industry?

    Thanks in advance for your response.

    • Andrew Little 7.1

      Permit costs are a fraction of the total cost of oil exploration, but oil companies are lining up for permits. This summer will see another significant exploration programme being rolled out, so I’m not convinced the regulations are the problem.

  8. mickysavage 8

    Greetings Andrew

    The last election did not go so well for us!

    But it seems that at an electorate level results were reasonably good. After all we won 5 extra electorate seats. Results will be out next week but my impression is that Labour would have won 35% of the electorate vote but only 25% of the party vote. In an MMP environment this is not a good result.

    Any thoughts on this and what would you do to bring it back?

    • Andrew Little 8.1

      Once again, we didn’t run a strong enough party vote campaign. This is an area we need to improve.

  9. greywarshark 9

    Hi Andrew I have put some questions on tax and small business etc on the other thread. Perhaps I should transfer these?

  10. Liminal 10

    “Our movement’s values are values that New Zealanders share”

    Really? How do you explain the thrashing that Labour received at the polls? You cannot get away with empty rhetoric like this as it does not mean anything, clearly.

    I’m a Labour supporter by the way.

    Liminal

    • Andrew Little 10.1

      The overwhelming sentiment of hundreds of messages I’ve received this week is that people who support Labour values couldn’t bring themselves to vote Labour this time.

      New Zealanders do care about each other, and do want a safe and egalitarian society to live in. Only a Labour-led government will truly address inequality and child poverty.

      • Shrubbery 10.1.1

        So they voted for National, in direct contravention of the values they support? That seems odd. I think they probably just ignored integrity and put self interest ahead of their values.

        • leftie 10.1.1.1

          @Shrubbery. I seriously doubt any REAL Labour supporter would ever vote National.
          Mr Little says…
          ” couldn’t bring themselves to vote Labour this time.” That is an interesting choice of words, sounds like David Shearer, what a bitter disappointment he turned out to be.

  11. Chelsea 11

    Hi Andrew,

    Good luck on your endeavour to become leader. I have two questions:

    1. Do you personally support decriminalising abortion?

    2. As leader of the Labour Party, what will you do to help rectify the fact that Labour has drastically failed to reach 45% women in caucus?

    Thank you!

    • Andrew Little 11.1

      On abortion, I support reviewing our current law, which is nearly 40 years old.

      In the last election, we had a great line-up of women candidates like Priyanca Radhakrishnan, Liz Craig and Rachel Jones (to name just a few), but our poor showing in the polls meant they didn’t get elected. The best answer to getting more women into caucus is performing better in the next election.

      • Shrubbery 11.1.1

        Uh, no, it’s to actually put those excellent candidates way up the list where they should be, and to get rid of all the hacks who don’t support Labour values.

  12. Bill 12

    We’ve always been the party that puts people first and takes the long view.

    I could almost feel apologetic for asking this, but don’t. How do you see that ‘long view’ you speak of fitting in with the scientific community now informing us that a mean average surface temperature of 4 degrees C above pre-industrial temperatures can reasonably be expected by around 2040 – 2050?

    (Within the scientific community, + 4 degrees C is widely considered to be incompatible with, or inimical to, any ongoing, cohesive global human community/civilisation)

    And all the best with your bid for leadership regardless of any ducking away from that, admittedly hard and not at all palatable question.

    • Andrew Little 12.1

      I agree with David Parker on this – undoubtedly we need to move to a low-carbon economy. It’s critical for the environment but also for our economic future. That’s why I stand by Labour’s position on strengthening the ETS and developing our low-carbon-intensive industries.

      • Bill 12.1.1

        Thanks for at least replying Andrew, but the ‘low carbon’ scenario you propose, isn’t a zero carbon future, isn’t any kind of future.

        To almost certainly avoid + 4 degrees C of warming (note: +2 degrees C is seen as more or less inevitable now) , the scientific community, working on available data, informs of a need to peak global emissions* by 2020 and then to globally reduce emissions to zero at a rate of 3.5% per annum post 2020.

        * energy and cement related emissions.

        (Just hoping that you read this and take it on board at some level. Not expecting further responses)

  13. Karen 13

    Do you support deep sea oil drilling and the expansion of the coal industry? While there are job here wouldn’t it be better to put more investment into clean tech industries where there are also job opportunities? Do you have a good working relationship with the Green Party?

    • Andrew Little 13.1

      Our economy and the world economy is in transition from one dependent on fossil fuels to one much less dependent on them. Until we can secure alternative forms of transport energy, amongst other things, there will continue to be a demand for oil. The critical thing is that all possible safeguards against environmental damage and for worker safety are in place. With deep-sea drilling in particular this means things like new exploration techniques, and I’d want to be satisfied that it can be done safely and that there were plans and resources in place in case of any incident.

      As long as we use steel, we will need coal. And I definitely want to see us create an environment which puts more investment into clean tech industries.

      • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1

        Until we can secure alternative forms of transport energy, amongst other things, there will continue to be a demand for oil.

        One way to transition to a low carbon future is to transition to using transport that doesn’t use fuel such as electric trains, buses and trucks. Such a transition would require massive investment in sustainable energy production and building of the infrastructure needed to support them. An investment that the private sector has already proven that it’s not willing to do.

        Would Labour, under your leadership, seek to undertake that investment?

  14. MrV 14

    Here is a video by a Labour party activist on BBC in the UK reflecting on his parties recent byelection result.

    Do you think this also applies to the Labour party in NZ?

    [lprent: I feel it is unlikely that he has time to watch a video. Why don’t you ask a question? ]

  15. Dialey 15

    As a green, I’d be interested to know whether you would work on a targeted and specific plan with the Greens over the next 3 years to ensure a progressive and compassionate team takes the next election.
    Also would you support sending troops to fight IS?

    • Andrew Little 15.1

      I’m keen to work closely with the Greens as a likely future coalition partner. But Labour’s challenge is to grow its vote, which I’m utterly committed to.

      Of course New Zealand has to play its role in international security, but I’m not sure we know what we’re getting into with IS and I wouldn’t commit troops until the public had a real sense of what was being asked of our troops and the environment they’re being asked to go into.

      • Shrubbery 15.1.1

        Concern for troops is admirable, but I’d rather you said no to war in Syria on the basis that it’s bad for the people of Syria, and morally unacceptable.

  16. Chris 16

    What happened to “Campaign Action” the Aussie crowd that was to lead the strategy & polling into the last Election?

    In your view, does Coatsworth & Barnett have to go?

  17. boldsirbrian 17

    Andrew, you stated on a TV3 interview on the 11 October , that “Labour should not have anything to do with Internet Mana”

    Are you aware that is a relatively controversial position that Labour took?

    Could you please comment on the possibility of embracing Mana in future elections, in the same way that Labour previously worked with Jim Anderton, and National is successfully working with Act and United Future?

    • wekarawshark 17.1

      addon question:

      Come 2017, if IP or Mana or IMP hold seats and are the make or break for Labour forming govt, will you choose the opposition benches or choose one of those parties’ support on C and S?

      • Andrew Little 17.1.1

        The problem with IMP is it looked and was highly opportunistic and they were rejected by voters. They’re not in Parliament now, and I don’t see them being in coalition with us.

        • wekarawshark 17.1.1.1

          That doesn’t really answer my question though. I’m not suggesting coalition, I’m suggesting C and S, and asking if you would prefer to be on the opposition rather than accept their support?

          This may be a question for closet to the next election, but it’s a fairly crucial one for left wing voters. I agree Labour needs to be clear in its intentions and that includes where it draws the line on turning down the opportunity to govern.

        • Shrubbery 17.1.1.2

          Well, you and the other Labour MPs bagging IMP managed to make a net minus 3 seats for the left in this election. That’s no way to form a Labour-led government.
          And why oppose them? Because their policies are committed to making things better for the least fortunate New Zealanders? Have you forgotten about them?
          You only can’t see them IMP parliament because you lack a vision for a left that works together. Any Labour leader that lacks such a vision will inevitably fail. Unfortunately, that’s every single one of the current leadership candidates.

        • Murray Rawshark 17.1.1.3

          My view is that you would be better telling us about the obvious problems in Labour that you think you can fix, rather than insulting a movement that is the first serious political organisation to try and represent the poor for at least 30 years. But yeah, keep going. Blame Hone and the German bloke. That’ll win the votes of people who think NAct is too far left.

          • Clemgeopin 17.1.1.3.1

            =1
            I agree! Labour were stupid to undermine Hone, Mana, IMP and KDC.
            Little is jumping on the same bandwagon. Silly move.

    • Andrew Little 17.2

      Voters are entitled to get a clear signal from us about who our likely coalition partners would be and as leader of the Labour Party I would ensure that happens.

      • boldsirbrian 17.2.1

        @ Andrew Little (17.2) responding to my question (17)

        That does not answer my question. You say “voters are entitled to a clear signal”. I asked you for any sort of signal. Your response – Zip

        It’s not something I need to know some time in the future. I want some indication on what you are thinking now, to inform my vote for Leader. At the very minimum, providing some clues as to what would lead you to agree, or disagree with some sort of cooperative arrangement with Mana.

        Non-answers may be acceptable to the Speaker within Parliament, but they sure look shabby here.

        • boldsirbrian 17.2.1.1

          @ boldsirbrian (17.2.1)

          With the benefit of a little time, I would be happier with the deletion of the final paragraph above. I should have taken into account more, the impressive number of posts that Andrew did respond to in a short time, for which I am also grateful for. If this one reply from Andrew fell short of my expectations, it’s not exactly a hanging offence.

  18. wekarawshark 18

    Hi Andrew, thanks for taking the time today.

    How familiar are you with the issues about the WINZ abatement process for beneficiaries earning extra income, where income above $100/wk is deducted at a % (before tax)?

    The abatement rules were written for a time that had different work culture and patterns in NZ. Now many people are completely reliant on a benefit for part of the time, or all of the time and only able to pick up part time or casual work, so the abatement process works against them because they can’t get a full time, permanent position and get off the benefit. This is more difficult for people on the DPB, sickness benefit, and people in areas where casual or P/T work is more common, because all those people are unlikely to move into permanent full time jobs. Even worse if paying childcare.

    The corollary of this is that some workplaces can’t get staff eg homehelp agencies in rural areas where they don’t have enough funded client hours to offer someone a full time job. Often the only people available/willing to do the low paid work are women on the DPB, but they can only work limited hours before they’re penalised financially and so turn down some of the work.

    I’m aware there are also fairness issues here for full time low wage workers.

    It seems a very complex situation. Has Labour done or intending to do any work on ways to solve these problems?

    (sorry for the length of the question, just wanted to explain the context for other people reading).

    • Andrew Little 18.1

      It is a complex question, requiring a complex answer. I agree with you that the relationship between rules about benefits and employment conditions need to be reviewed so people don’t lose opportunities but also aren’t left impoverished.

      • wekarawshark 18.1.1

        Thanks. Can you say if Labour is looking at this in any way at all already? I get the impression that pretty much all parties and NGOs have this one in the too hard basket.

      • Shrubbery 18.1.2

        I agree that’s the way to go about things. Our welfare system is set up to punish people, not help them at the moment. If Labour can turn that around, it will make a world of difference to those who need assistance.

  19. cindy 19

    Hi andrew

    Does it worry you that all five of the candidates standing for leadership are white, middle class, middle aged men?

    And if I can ask a second question: given that the global carbon budget is rapidly diminishing, ie we are heading for a 4 degree world, why do you think oil companies lining up for permits is going to be good for our economy, long-term?

    • Andrew Little 19.1

      Yes, and the challenge for the next leader is to develop the amazing talent we have right across the caucus, including our women MPs and our much larger Māori and Pasifika caucus.

      There is no question we need to do more to encourage more productive investment in clean tech industries as part of the transition to a lower-carbon economy.

  20. cd u plse detail the specific poverty-busting policies/ideas you wd support..?

    ..thank you..

  21. greywarshark 21

    Hi Andrew
    1 I’m thinking now about small business in NZ. Would you increase assistance to people trying to get these off the ground, if they had a good business plan and experience say?
    There isn’t enough money circulating in the communities that stays in the community and we need more entrepreneurial spirit. Seeing that established businesses are not willing to pay decent wages and respect their employees by giving them set hours on a permanent basis, people could put the same sort of graft into starting businesses that often take a number of years to get going before they can bring in good money. I think they would if given advice and extra skills available to carry out some good idea.
    Would you support help, loans and advice for small business.

    2 Then there is the Grameen style lending for small one-person initiatives. Ordinary people helping themselves, when they have an idea they can earn from. Can we get more of this going. We have something in Nelson like that but haven’t enquired lately how it’s going. It has been successful for some years. Would you support this.

    3 Also there is the situation of working beneficiaries. To me it seems a good idea, now we have the flood of cheaper imported goods that have killed off our own initiatives here and helped keep our wage rates low. The economy functions at that level. If people could get as much work as they could reasonably manage and still be able to get monetary and accommodation assistance, we would get healthier happier people and they could manage on a lower income with small aspirations and be happy. But social mobility would be available too. So would you be open to this practical approach, paying benefits and encouraging people to work and receive top-ups and not be counting every penny people earned, though keeping in touch to ensure that benefits be slowly reduced when appropriate levels of earnings achieved.

    4 Would you support a citizen investment fund to buy NZ developed and operated businesses to stop all our innovative, profitable businessses being sold overseas or getting into one wealthy NZ person’s hands, but rather being managed and run well by and for NZs.

  22. Treetop 22

    Andrew if you miss out being elected the leader.

    Would you be happy being the deputy and taking on the role of uniting the Labour caucus?

    I do realise that caucus elects the deputy.

    • Andrew Little 22.1

      Regardless of the outcome of the leadership contest, I’m totally committed to doing whatever I can to improve the way caucus functions, to improve the relationship with the party, and to set us up to win in 2017.

  23. Mooloo magic 23

    National’s strength is Key. Kiwis for reasons that escape me like him and trust him. How would you as leader expose the PMs weakness and gain the voters trust and respect and what now seems important to be liked by the electorate.

    • Andrew Little 23.1

      A lot of people have written to me to tell me they don’t like Key or National but they vote for them anyway. Beating Key will take a credible, united and hard-working opposition.

      • Shrubbery 23.1.1

        I think it probably requires an education system that reduces the number of people that would stupidly vote for a political party they don’t even like.

  24. whateva next? 24

    Hello Andrew,
    How would you manage the ” I want a PrimeMinister I could share a pint with” approach to the electorate choosing who they want to govern the country?
    I was heartened when you put your name in the hat, it felt like choosing sides before, which only served to widen the divide, so thanks and good luck

  25. greywarshark 25

    No.2Hello Andrew –
    I am thinking about tax as it affects lower income people. A small change there would have a big effect on this group. Would you comment on –

    1 Doing away with secondary tax? It I think dates back to when everyone could make a reasonable living from one, and doing extra lifted one into the higher income level. Now multiple jobs may be required to basically manage. It would wipe a barrier to achieving better conditons.

    2 I would like regions that have peaks of tourism say in low populated areas to get more from such tourists. This would be done by allocating some GST taken from the area (which would be identified by a number code in the GST number) and go back to the Council providing infrastructure, roads, toilets, care. The more effort an area did, the more business it achieved for its efforts, the more it would receive. I consider this would be a very positive and encouraging return for regions. (Don’t know how it would apply to Auckland – the local and central govt could argue that one.)

    3 Stop taxing savings. I have been taxed at 39.5% i think, huge, until I got to and got the code changed. Now it is down to 19.5% I think. Why? The little interest received gets taxed at this huge amount. It’s a disgrace.

    4 CGT on all houses over average for that area? Seems reasonable. There are I think 100,000 NZ businesses in the housing industry, far more than in any other NZ industry sector. Why should they be able to have taxation friendly opportunities when there are rich pickings to be had in this area, the most important business to most apart from dairy. Or bring back stamp duty, or both.

    5 Estate duty, what about it? The rich get rich, and the poor get children was the old cry. Less children now though, that can be contained, but the rich are still accumulating capital. And staying rich, and the poor staying poor. A reasonable small percentage estate duty across the board would help restore the coffers after lots of tax avoidance by the wealthy smarts.

  26. greywarshark 26

    No. 3
    Hello again Andrew – just a short one.
    What about regional cooperatives hosting industry with investment funds from the local citizens backing it? Would that get your interest and support?

    • Andrew Little 26.1

      I appreciate your questions – they’re very detailed and there’s some interesting ideas there. I probably can’t answer them all today but it’s definitely good food for thought.

    • Colonial Rawshark 26.2

      Very nice question greywarshark.

      • greywarshark 26.2.1

        Thanx Colonial rawshark and Andrew Little
        I tried to make the questions explicit because each one is a vital need for the country. And therefore need to be dealt with by the next Labour leader if he/she and their caucus and government, is the right stuff.

        It would be hard to give definite answers but an indication of interest and commitment to attention to these areas would have been welcome when time was short. The questions were read or noticed which was good, they were long but I had summarised them and numbered them to enable a quick grasp of the subject.

        I appreciate your questions – they’re very detailed and there’s some interesting ideas there. I probably can’t answer them all today but it’s definitely good food for thought.

        That was an overly cautious answer. I have been in a factory where the workers were being encouraged to go on strike. And we lost pay over it, and we never really had a chance of getting what was being asked for, which anyway only applied to a part of the whole factory. I’ve had that experience and know that union people are used to blarney, taking power and running things their way, though advising that way is for your good. So I don’t believe soft soap, where’s the hard stuff.

        Unions can stand up and tell you what they are planning is for your own good, but there can be a wider agenda in mind. Such as when we workers would have liked to alter our basic working hour period, starting half hour earlier so we could get off earlier. But we weren’t allowed to do that because it created flexibility that employers in other factories might want to exploit. We all had to move together and be uniform. But it stops innovation and ability to make deals where it would suit and have good outcomes. There is a promise of the union being for the workers, but then they can become another boss, working top down, limiting opportunities for change or improvement to conditions when the union decides so.

  27. Steve 27

    Hi Andrew

    As leader will you demand a full commission of inquiry into the criminal allegations and abuses of power highlighted in Nicky Hager’s recent book, and others which have come to light since its publication?

  28. red blooded 28

    A few questions, Andrew:
    1) You have said that there were too many big, abstract policies during the last campaign and that people voted for stability. You’ve also said that Labour needs to meet people’s concerns rather than trying to shift their opinions. these are both reasonable statements, but how would you ensure that a party you led did more than just follow opinion polls, and took a leading role in shaping the political landscape and developing concrete solutions to social, environmental and political issues?
    2) Team building skills – what would you do differently?

    • Andrew Little 28.1

      If I were elected leader, I would like to take a few months to get out and talk to New Zealanders. Kiwis are pretty open-minded, you’ve just got to know where to start with them, and I don’t think we did.

      #2 is a really big question, but I’ve brought together a large political campaigning organisation in the past, and I can do it again.

  29. ron 29

    Hi Andrew,

    How do you expect to lead the Labour Party when you’ve had such a horror time as Labour candidate for New Plymouth? I want to support you but worry when you talk about running a party vote campaign when you have no experience of winning and holding an electorate.

    Ron.

    • Andrew Little 29.1

      The leadership I’m offering is to get caucus working well and to work with the party to get it functioning well. I’m confident that with the skills I’ve got I can achieve these things, and the feedback I’ve had over the last week from many people across New Zealand suggests they’re confident I can too.

    • DoublePlus Good 29.2

      I think that’s a bit unrealistic given how right-leaning New Plymouth has become to expect Andrew Little to win that seat.

  30. greywarshark 30

    Nothing from Andrew since 3.23. He was working on his post before 3 so does that mean we were allocated half an hour? I thought we would be working off the end of the original post and had worked out some useful questions that affect us all. I hope that now they have had to be transferred by me and moderated, they actually get looked at.
    Because they were about definite things that need doing, in my opinion, which isn’t too different from a large group of other informed interested people re tax regions small businesses beneficiaries supported when they have low earnings etc.

    Positive phrases don’t cut it with me. I want to see the heart and muscle under the shirt or designer suit, (if woman.)

  31. Not a PS Shark Sashimi 31

    Hi Andrew, Two points and the question.

    1.Many of the members believe that the Caucus has been relatively dysfunctional over the past six years. I’d say the majoirity now hold that view and do not see it as something for which Cunliife should get the blame as Mr Shearer says.
    2. Many of many Caucus MPs spoke angrily and campaigned hard against the thresholds that he membership wanted. (Ellerslie Conference 2012).

    Q. Do you believe the Caucus is out of synch with the Membership and that a number of MPs need to be moved on?

    • Andrew Little 31.1

      As I said, Labour’s power has always been its people. We need to unify and focus that power. There’s great people in caucus, and great talent across the whole movement, and we need to pull it all together and point it in the same direction – that’s winning in 2017.

      • leftie 31.1.1

        You didnt answer the question Mr Little.
        Why did caucus refuse to unite in the led up to the last election?
        You and Robertson speak of unifying caucus, but were not prepared to do that under David Cunliffe who had been democratically elected.
        It appears to me that a certain self serving faction of caucus has done everything in their power to undermine the Labour party under Cunliffe’s leadership. Unless that certain self interested faction either removes themselves or pulls their heads in there won’t be any winning in 2017 because they are the problem that are holding Labour back.

        [lprent: don’t try to hector someone who isn’t here. He can’t help it if you were late.. ]

        • leftie 31.1.1.1

          @lprent. Mr Little said he would try and check back in later, and I think it’s debatable whether my comment would be considered bullying or not. Matter of opinion I think.

          • Murray Rawshark 31.1.1.1.1

            I think it’s one of the most important questions that can be asked.

          • Clemgeopin 31.1.1.1.2

            Little did say he would check back later. I wish he did check back and answer the unanswered questions. He does want our votes after all, doesn’t he?

        • phillip ure 31.1.1.2

          @ leftie..

          ..+ 1…

      • Not a PS Shark Sashimi 31.1.2

        Thanks Andrew and Lyn

    • leftie 31.2

      +100 Not a PS Shark Sashimi.

  32. lprent 32

    Check your refresh.I have put several through in the last beer..Galbraith’s on sunday is a good quiet moderating venue..

    • les 32.1

      so will you be throwing your hat in the ring…too!

    • greywarshark 32.2

      lprent
      I did a moan about not seeing any more answers from Andrew. Put it up, saw I was mistaken, then went back and in short time, deleted it. while it was in moderation. But unfortunately it still went through. Which I wished not to happen, seeing I was wrong and it struck a ‘bum’ note.

  33. seeker 33

    Hi Andrew, at comment 10.1, 3.12pm you wrote:

    “The overwhelming sentiment of hundreds of messages I’ve received this week is that people who support Labour values couldn’t bring themselves to vote Labour this time.”

    Did they mention the three most “overwhelming” reasons why? If so could you please tell us – even two would do. Thank you

  34. Andrew Little 34

    Thanks for all your questions everyone – unfortunately I have another appointment at 4 so I’ve only got time to answer a few more.

  35. b waghorn 35

    Hi what are your plans to stop the decline of rural towns and communities.
    cheers

    • greywarshark 35.1

      @ b waghorn
      Good question. Should have put it earlier. Lateness is why you didn’t get a reply. Important matter that one – decline of regions and rural areas. As you have indicated previously.

  36. cd u plse tell us why you wd not answer the question on poverty..(number 20..)..?

    • lprent 36.1

      That was a question? Incredulous..

    • boldsirbrian 36.2

      @ phillip ure (36)
      .
      I was also disappointed that your question was not answered. Probably one of the most important questions asked. I hope it was not simply because of the unnecessary abbreviations that Phillip included.

      Question 20 by phillip ure:
      Could you please detail the specific poverty-busting policies/ideas you would support..?

      I would have hoped that it would have been about housing, which is the overwhelmingly biggest issue driving people into poverty (based on a Hamilton public meeting at which reports from Poverty Action Waikato were presented).

      Mr. Botany (B.)

      • greywarshark 36.2.1

        boldsirbrian 36.2
        Housing yes, but wait there’s more. Labour people often get fixated on people’s living standards and don’t demand job creation schemes, temporary work on projects that provide useful amenities for local bodies etc.

        What is needed, equally with housing is good paid employment opportunities and encouragement for small business, and to cast around for extra earnings where available that can be added to any benefit and allowance received, not just replace it leaving the worker worse off (at the present low level post-Ruthless Richardson and her bunch of poverty builders – or in their parlance – wealth creators. Hah!).

    • greywarshark 36.3

      Possibly phillip was running out of cash on his cellphone and had to resort to the minimum number of letters for his message. It happens to some. I can’t phone out at the moment.

  37. Andrew Little 37

    Thanks again everyone – unfortunately I’ve got to go. I’ll try to check back later.

  38. felix 38

    “I’d like to say thanks to the Standard for hosting me today.”

    Ban him, Lynn! 😉

    • lprent 38.1

      Ummm.according to the policy…

      However in this case I prefer leniency..

      • phillip ure 38.1.1

        i asked a simple/clear question..

        ..on the issue said to be in the forefront of many peoples’ minds..(according to polling.)

        ..and despite little answering far more esoteric-questions..

        ..he just ignored this one..

        ..why the incredulity at a follow-up question of ‘how come you didn’t answer the first question..?’

        (..is poverty a non-issue..?..)

        ..we were offered the opportunity to ask questions..

        ..and i fail to see how i cd have been more polite/concise in my wording of that question..

        (..and especially considering how labour have just ignored the poorest for 30 yrs..and offered s.f.a. in their 2014 campaign..it is kinda relevant what a little-led labour wd do..you’d think..?..)

        ..so the conclusion to be drawn from littles’ silence..is that he continues to believe we should do s.f.a…

        ..how cd it not be..?

        ..he is just another neo-lib/fuck-the-poor excuse for a labour politician..

        ..and gee..!..labour don’t have enough of them…do they..?

        • boldsirbrian 38.1.1.1

          @ phillip ure (38.1.1)

          It was a good question phillip, that I’ve explained above (in 36.2).

          Perhaps we should give Andrew the benefit of the doubt. He had many to answer, and many that in the end that were not able to be answered. (Heavens knows why he only allocated one hour for this task)

          In a writing frenzy, it is possible to briefly look at questions and answer the next one where an obvious answer comes immediately to mind. It is possible also that he feels that the right answer to the question cannot be answered until after a full review of all policies, that he has pledged to make.

          His response to my question (17) was pitifully limp. Probably worse than no answer at all that you received? Sometimes politicians are so used to delivering ‘non-answers’ in question time in Parliament, that they forget how normal people answer questions?

          Mr. Botany (B.)

  39. wekarawshark 39

    That went reasonably well I thought. To start with the replies seemed too pat and vision blah blah, but once he got into the swing of things it definitely improved.

    I like how Little says ‘Labour-led government’ 😈

  40. SouthDeez 40

    Labour is about as pro Labour as National is socialist. When will the Labour party renounce its turn to neo liberalism in the mid 80s and return to its social democratic roots?

    In its current form, Labour is little more than a lighter shade of blue. As a social democrat, where is the incentive for me to support a party without a full employment policy, without a commitment to free tertiary education, with no desire to provide comprehensive welfare etc., etc. Labour has no real plan outside of tinkering around the edges, because they’re too scared of freaking out the middle class and the corporate media. So, why bother voting for them if they don’t want to implement real progressive change?

  41. Manuka - Ancient Order of Rawsharks 41

    I agree, Weka. Here is someone who, given 3 years could win back however many of the missing million, take on JK and, in coalition with the Greens, lead the next gov.

    My only hesitation is about “taking off a few months to talk to the people and find out their concerns”. Haven’t others before him tried that with less than great results? By the time the new leader returns the masses are restless and asking “Why no action?” … and the party in power have begun various sabotage strategies.

    The main concerns of the people have been ringing out for a fair while now; they should be more than apparent. It is time to hit the ground running, imo.

  42. TheContrarian 42

    I have a question (probably too late however…)

    Why would you want to associate yourself with The Standard? This site is just navel gazing idiocy. I wouldn’t have a bar of it. Rise above this shit – these guys are nasty and vindictive. If you want to win then appeal to the left leaning middle. Not these freaks.

  43. Thomas_Hari 43

    I’m not a Labour voter. I disagree with Andrew that Labour can deal with the intractable problems in NZ, and that National govern for ‘the few’ as simply being wrong. However I have to say from looking at this thread, even though Andrew for the most part didn’t say anything in particular, when Labour inevitably vault back into government, you could do worse then have Andrew as leader.

    Andrew’s brief comment on oil permit costs not effecting exploration demand was quite good – he strikes me as being someone who may know a bit about the industry. No binding referenda – good, unless you want to say goodbye to the Maori seats. No raise in the age of super – good, solid recognition of realities of blue collar workers which shows he isn’t just paying lip service.

    • Shrubbery 43.1

      National obviously govern for the few. The inequality stats alone demonstrate that is the case, along with their tax policy.

  44. philj 44

    Hey pu (n)
    ” … little answering …”
    lol.

  45. Clemgeopin 45

    Among a few good answers, the best answer I liked was this:

    ‘Regardless of the outcome of the leadership contest, I’m totally committed to doing whatever I can to improve the way caucus functions, to improve the relationship with the party, and to set us up to win in 2017″

    I might consider giving him my second preference.

    • leftie 45.1

      @Clemgeopin. Why didn’t he do that after David Cunliffe was democratically elected the first time? I find the lip service from Little and Robertson hypocritical.

  46. SouthDeez 46

    Hey, contrarian, if the site’s so fucking lame, then why do you spend so much time here?

  47. Ad 47

    So overall how good was little?

    Was he better than Cunliffe so far?

    Was he better than Robertson so far?

    Was he better than Parker so far?

    Do any begin to appear like The One (as Morpheus would say) to Beat Key?

    What’s the performance score cards for each looking like so far?

    • Clemgeopin 47.1

      On a top score of 10, I would score Little a 6.

      Some answers were waffle, some were ambiguous/unclear, some were promising and some quite good. None were outstanding.

      5 or 6 out of 10….say, 5.5

      What do you rate it as?

      • Skinny 47.1.1

        Andrew’s answers were straight up which is his style. Taking time out to get around New Zealand and listening to Kiwi’s and what they have to say is very wise and should play an important part into whipping and shaping the Labour party into a election fighting machine. 7/10 for honesty downgrade 1 from 8 for subjecting us all to Phil’s ranting for a while.

        • Draco T Bastard 47.1.1.1

          Andrew’s answers were straight up which is his style.

          Except for the questions he bypassed answering by writing a whole lot of well-meaning gibberish.

          Taking time out to get around New Zealand and listening to Kiwi’s and what they have to say is very wise and should play an important part into whipping and shaping the Labour party into a election fighting machine.

          Doesn’t seemed to have worked for the previous three Labour leaders.

          • AmaKiwi 47.1.1.1.1

            “Taking time out to get around New Zealand and listening to Kiwi’s.”

            Translation: I don’t have a plan but I’ll sort something out.

            • Colonial Rawshark 47.1.1.1.1.1

              Little has potential but likely won’t be able to beat Key in 2017. Having learnt and got some additional experience under his belt, 2020 is quite possible.

              • Manuka - Ancient Order of Rawsharks

                Partnered with Parker, who does have experience and drive, would speed things up. Andrew as frontman, meet-the people, face & voice; Parker quietly moving things along.

            • Akldnut 47.1.1.1.1.2

              “Taking time out to get around New Zealand and listening to Kiwi’
              Translation: I don’t have a plan but I’ll sort something out.

              Yep definately Keyspeak

        • les 47.1.1.2

          One would have thought the recent election campaign may have given the opportunity to ‘get around NZ and listen to Kiwis’!Do these blokes have to be hit over the head with a sledgehammer?

    • felix 47.2

      Do any begin to appear like The One (as Morpheus would say) to Beat Key?

      Meh. Cunliffe already beat Key in the way everyone said he needed to be beat, i.e. by besting him in the debates and holding his feet to the fire in parliament.

      Unfortunately none of that matters. Key has always been shit in debates and no-one listens to parliament except me.

      John Key is the captain of the All Blacks and that’s that.

  48. Hanswurst 48

    I didn’t think that was terribly informative, tbh. Most of the answers were fairly noncomittal, and in that respect I see more parallels with Shearer than anything else. When the clearest commitment is that he is going to get out and listen to the views of New Zealanders for a couple of months, that doesn’t really speak for a strong vision; it’s a laudable endeavour in itself, but I would have thought the readership here would have been more interested in finding out what attitudes he already has and exactly what he might be interested in asking “New Zealanders”, who are a diverse bunch who will probably say a lot of different things that can be interpreted in all sorts of different ways.

    It sounds very much like he was hedging his bets and not wanting to commit to anything that might frighten horses of any hue before the leadership election. That’s fine and presumably inevitable, but I still got the impression that Cunliffe managed to say a lot more in the same context in similar situations on here in the past.

    My worry with the general narrative of, “Our policies are too complex and we need to listen to New Zealanders” sounds suspiciously like code for, “We need to move towards the centre (i. e. the right)”.

    • Marksman33 48.1

      +100 Hanswurst.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 48.2

      Really ? Can you name ONE policy off the top of your head without looking it up ?

      Didnt think so

      • Colonial Rawshark 48.2.1

        Dental care for pregnant women
        Lots of new cheaper houses
        Colon cancer screening
        Bin National Standards

        And I didn’t even run as a candidate this time around…

    • Draco T Bastard 48.3

      +11111111

    • greywarshark 48.4

      Our policies are complex – code for
      1 you are a bit simple and won’t understand all the factors at play even if we take the time to explain them fully, or
      2 there are some matters involved that you wouldn”t like or fully understand if we explained them to you so better not go too deep, or
      3 Labour is feeling its way here and the members out there have no idea of how hard it is to get in Parliament and stay there and we have to tailor our policies accordingly, or
      4 it’s the public’s fault really they are too fickle and better to keep to a known and understood formula, make a change and 1,2, and 3 apply. They won’t understand why remedial policies are necessary that hurt their pockets. Remember how they threw Nordmeyer out for putting up tobacco fhs, or
      5 Too many Labourites are full of nostalgia for the past and don’t realise that we have moved on. When the members are going to catch on and catch up we will get on better. Hardly any of us wear cloth caps now, they aren’t in fashion even. Hah hah. There are few miners and physical workers, and the numbers are going down by attrition all the time. It’s all mindwork these days. People want a Party with a recognisable brand and attractive style. Trouble is many of our members are holding us back, they’ve got the wrong attitude and stop us progressing. They’re useful, but not ornamental!

      • quartz 48.4.1

        Or 6. “try selling a cgt with a plethora of exemptions to a voting population that have bugger all time to read a massive policy document, while dealing with a media that give you ten seconds to state your whole case, while also having an opponent with a well-oiled and well resourced PR machine running a sharp fear campaign against it.”

        CGT and raising the pension age are probably good ideas but trying to sell them from opposition is called leading with your chin. They are the kind of policies you introduce in a second term once you’ve laid the ground for them with reviews and independent working groups and when the electorate have seen you manage government well and trust you.

      • Murray Rawshark 48.4.2

        Very good, grey. He came across to me as totally unprepared and full of glib phrases. In fact, he seems to be a mix of Key and Shearer. Someone standing for leader of the largest opposition party should have some idea what the problems are before they stand. They should not have to do a bloody Tiki Tour to figure out what’s going on.
        4/10

      • KJT 48.4.3

        There are more physical workers than ever. Except they are in shops and old peoples homes, and mostly women.

        A return to “cloth cap” collectivism is the only way they will ever get fair treatment.

    • Clemgeopin 48.5

      +1

    • leftie 48.6

      @Hanswurst. +100

  49. Penny Bright 49

    Andrew – do you support Labour having a clear ‘action plan’ against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption and ‘corporate welfare’?

    Would you make this a priority?

    Penny Bright

  50. sabine 50

    Yes I have a question….

    what did Mr. Little actually say in all of his answers? nothing much but corporate speech as he will be different to all the others because?

    oh dear.

    really
    just oh dear….we are so fucked.

    • miravox 50.1

      +1 sabine.

    • Cave Johnson 50.2

      What did you expect? A leader who was egotistical enough to think they get to decide policy and can whip everyone into shape would be a disaster. All he can do is suggest some areas for focus and set the tone and general direction and try to engender loyalty and support through competence. A leader needs to connect with the public and members and show respect for democratic processes and individuals. I don’t know Andrew very well, but those are the kinds of things I will be assessing him on in the next few weeks.

      • Hanswurst 50.2.1

        So why did he come here at all? I don’t see any real suggestions for focus or setting the tone. I’m not saying he’ll make a bad leader, I just can’t for the life of me see what he thought these answers would achieve.

        • Cave Johnson 50.2.1.1

          I think it’s mostly called ‘pressing the flesh’, but I certainly took away an impression of the tone of the guy.
          Again, what did folks expect? Policy detail? A passionate Death or Glory speech? A declaration that he would try to lead Labour to a place left of the Greens?
          Tough crowd.
          Probably the toughest you could find anywhere, but I guess he knew that.
          So I’m giving him at least a little respect for turning up.

          • Lanthanide 50.2.1.1.1

            I agree, Cave.

            While I’m a tad disappointed about what we got, I think anyone who expected much more was being a bit naive.

      • greywarshark 50.2.2

        @ cave johnson
        what a lot of blah from you. There has been an election, talking till our heads ring, with tons of time to think about policy, it should all be there in his head. Andrew Little actually referred to complex policies that weren’t explained well or something similar.

        And if he thinks he can be a better leader than David C let him tell us what drives him? What does he want to do, how is he going to make things better, is he on fire to do a great job for ordinary lower and middle income NZs? I didn’t get that feeling. A cautious grey man is what I felt, and that’s not what I had hoped.

        We are entering a phase with similar feeling to Brit before WW2. They could be excused for last minute prevaricating because they weren’t tooled up ready to take on the opposition, they bought time with mediating and peace talks etc. But Labour should be ready to move, time for delay in making a declaration of their support for the good little people in Nz has passed. Do they care about us or themselves? Where is our Churchill?

    • leftie 50.3

      @Sabine +100

  51. venezia 51

    I sincerely hope that the review of the Election outcome includes some sort of serious study about why Labour supporters did not support the Party in their votes. It is too easy for candidates to quote anecdotes, or claim they have had communication with hundreds of Labour supporters who didn’t vote Labour and state reasons as to why ( as in Shearer’s Anti Cunliffe comments on The Nation this morning – which may suit their leadership election chances). I have had a gutsful of MPs dumping the blame for an election defeat on Cunliffe. Also – to me it is nonsensical to hear stuff like eg “they don’t like Key or National but vote for them anyway”. The best one can take from that is that people don’t take politics seriously. And if it is policies they don’t understand then we need to pay attention to how they are messaged to the public. Get some educators on to it.
    The media have had a concerted Anti Labour position for years now. This needs attention. We need the key issues in Dirty Politics exposed – given that it involves the PM’s office, nothing less than a Royal Commission will do.
    And if media presence is important in an election campaign, then the least I would expect is that the leadership/ spokespeople get some media training.

    • Blue 51.1

      + 1

      I want some real data as to why people didn’t vote Labour. Not anecdata. I don’t think we should make decisions on ‘what went wrong’ based on everyone’s personal opinion or what their aunty or some guy they met in Palmerston North told them.

      I really hope someone is gathering the data.

      • Hanswurst 51.1.1

        Very true – especially when the majority of these “anecdata” seem to come from hundreds of people who just happen to have spoken to Shearer, Robertson and Nash.

    • leftie 51.2

      @venezia +100

    • seeker 51.3

      @ venezia
      “claim they have had communication with hundreds of Labour supporters who didn’t vote Labour and state reasons as to why”

      I asked a similar question of Andrew Little (see comment 33 above) he gave the main reasons mentioned as policies and not looking “ready to go” (see 33.1)

    • greywarshark 51.4

      @ venezia
      True. +100
      the leadership/ spokespeople get some media training.
      I say – Just get some training in strategy, self-control and commitment and loyalty to the group you say you belong to. It couldn’t be worse if the French or the USA had sent saboteurs or provocateurs over here to cause disarray in the left. Apparently right wing Canadian Harper only got in because of splintering and dissension in the left. Happened also in France, and….

      Labour needs a Drill Instructor. If you’re all so smart how come you aren’t in government? You Labour disarray. You spoilt little namby pambys – get into line and step, straighten up, defaulters will have their stripes torn off. Get marching to Victory. Only strong discipline will get this lot straightened out.

  52. I would suggest that it was not just the voters who didn’t understand Labour’s policies. Even the leader did not appear to have a good understanding of the CGT. Labour had 6 years to work out the details of their policy. To respond to questions with “we would leave that to an expert panel” is not helpful.

    Expert Panels normally are bureaucrats based in Wellington or Auckland and are often out of touch with life outside the city boundaries. There is no way I would have confidence in their decision making.

    The CGT, while a brilliant idea for regulating house prices in the city, would disadvantage those living in small rural communities. It was this policy that cost Labour my vote.

    • leftie 52.1

      @Halcyon. And what has happened during those 6 years? there have been a number of leadership changes, and David Cunliffe had been leader not even a year. He ran a good campaign despite the dismal result, and considering he has been fighting on 3 fronts, (a self interested faction of the Labour party, the Key led government and mainstream media).
      Come hell or high water John key was going to win, msm made sure of that, the system itself made sure of that.

      I have read comments from someone named Halcyon on other sites, and that Halcyon would never vote Labour anyway, not in a million years.

    • GregJ 52.2

      Interesting response @Halcyon.

      Would you elaborate on how you saw the CGT disadvantaging rural communities?

      Would it be rude to ask where your vote went? (I understand if you don’t wish to answer that).

      • Halcyon 52.2.1

        Hi Gregj. my vote this election went to National. The second time I have voted National in 18 elections. I have also voted Social credit once (Bruce Beetham days) and the Green Party once. That leaves 14 elections that I have voted Labour.

        The disadvantage for rural communities is several fold. Many people have to live “on the job” is isolated areas (like principal/teacher of sole charge schools). So as not to be disadvantaged when they retire they need to buy a house in an area where they will retire to. To cover the cost of rent where they are living they need to rent out the house.

        Second, it may be a sellers market in Auckland but there are parts of NZ where it may take years rather than weeks to sell houses. In our small town there are houses that have been on the market for 3 years. The price asked is less than the value of the building. These houses need to be rented out until they are sold so they can be insured.

        Remember, every person who buys a home is making an investment. Why does Labour want to disadvantage that part of NZ that can be seen as the backbone of the country.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 52.2.1.1

          Faulty reasoning if you ask me: if the rural housing market is stagnant it makes for poor housing investment, and since CGT was to be paid on profits, and not apply to the family home, it’s unclear what the problem is.

          First you say there’s no profit in rural housing investment (asking price less than value), then you complain about a tax which apply to these non-existent profits.

          Perhaps you can explain the discrepancy between your argument and Warren “taxation doesn’t deter profit-making” Buffet’s.

          • Halcyon 52.2.1.1.1

            there are two reasons and one is that people who are required to live in rural areas for their job need the same opportunity to invest in a future home. This is the issue. That home may not be the one they end up living in.

            I can understand people who have lived in the same location all their lives not understanding the issue.

            Secondly, when parents die it may take time to sell houses in rural areas. Not like Auckland where it would be possibly to sell a house in weeks. IF there is an increase in the value of the house why should the children of the rural family have to pay CGT where the children of the Auckland family do not?

          • Halcyon 52.2.1.1.2

            As there will be no time limit from purchase time to sale time there is going to be a lift in values. My first home cost $60,000. Over 50 years the price has climbed and would now sell for more than that. I don’t see why my grandchildren should have to pay tax when the grandchildren of an estate in Auckland would not have to do so.

            Taxation nees to be fair across the board. Either make the tax payable on all houses sold or create a model that is equitable.

        • greywarshark 52.2.1.2

          I thought that the idea of the CGT was to set the percentage on the difference between purchase price and sale price? But if someone has held onto a property for a long time, then it may only have inflated in line with true inflation. So perhaps it should apply to only houses sold within five years of purchase, to limit fast rolling of houses for quick profit.

          • Halcyon 52.2.1.2.1

            Now I can agree with that Grey. That will stop those who are after the quick buck.

            My first house cost me $60,000. It is now values at over $450,000 due to long term inflation. Think of the tax grab a government could get off that.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 52.2.1.2.1.1

              Since the “tax grab” is applied to capital gains on the property after the introduction of the tax, it would be a lot less than your figures indicate.

              As for future investments, you may find it necessary to rebalance your portfolio to take account of local conditions depending on government policy in other areas. Just because property was a convenient investment in the past doesn’t mean it will be convenient forever, especially not when the alternative is homeless families.

              But then, the National Party creates unemployment and homelessness, and you just voted for them, didn’t you.

              • Halcyon

                No OAB, the economic climate creates unemployment and homelessness. We had homelessness and unemployment during Labour’s last reign. In fact we have had homelessness as far back as I can remember and unemployment has been around since the mid 1980’s at least.

                I note that neither National nor Labour have managed to solve the issues.

                I would suggest you read more widely to gain your information.

        • GregJ 52.2.1.3

          Thanks for replying – I appreciate you taking the time. The majority of my immediate family live in rural areas so I’m always interested in a “rural” perspective even though I have been a “townie” for a long time now.

          Some of the sentiments you have expressed are similar to some of my family – although almost all of them expressing them voted NZ First rather than National.

          I’m not going to go into the details of what you have explained too much – other than to comment that the understanding of the CGT and how it would be applied seems to be widely misunderstood – and that is probably something Labour should reflect on.

          Thanks again.

  53. BLiP 53

    What a wasted opportunity. Not only did Andrew fail to differentiate himself from any of the other leadership candidates, he failed also to differentiate the Labour Party from the National Ltd™ Cult of John Key. Nothing I read here is anything I wouldn’t expect to see from Blinglish, or Joyce or Brownlee. Are we sure that it was actually Andrew Little who was answering the questions and not some PR twerp?

    • just saying 53.1

      Pretty much sums up my attitude.

      • greywarshark 53.1.1

        On reflection the word journeyman came to me. I looked it up – it means a skilled person at a craft working for someone. It seemed to me that Andrew is perhaps a skilled union negotiator, holds his cards to his chest, is noncommittal so as not to lose advantage or start a false line of negotiation. If that was his feeling, then we as questioners were the other side, and he must be wary not to cede undue advantage. Then if that was the case, we were not on the same side, he wasn’t seeing that he was with and for us, but looking to find a suitable position that would satisfy us and let him move forward.

        I didn’t feel that he was going to be the people’s man. David Parker thinks David Cunliffe should consider stepping down – heard on radionz yesterday I think. Grant Robertson has the sort of effusive persona that I distrust as false, not indicating the real person. David Shearer had his knee jerk reaction to the beneficiary slip out which also conveys his lack of understanding of how the underclass can arise in society, and how they cope to manage with little.

        I don’t know what NZ Labour is going to come to if they can’t accept David Cunliffe. And he has to turn into a green Hulk, expand his size, demand authority to make changes and get rid of the parasites sucking the strength of the present Party. Or else just diddle around playing for the Centre Right with National, with just a few considerations for the majority of the country who receive under $70,000 from two wages. Not to mention those eking out their income under $30,000 ($15 per hour x 40 – not always available hours! – is $600 weekly, just over $30,000 a year.)

        This morning I heard that Belgium has been without a government for months, and that once they were without one for 18 months? They used to have balanced coalitions between the main groups of French and Dutch speakers, but now there are 3 Flemish (Dutch) parties and one French only, in coalition. One of the Dutch parties wants to separate itself in some way. The whole world is coming apart under the present financial instability and lack of sovereignty, and the present aggressive world political hegemony.

        We are not on our own in our struggle for stability, and a decent working economy and polity.
        edited

        • leftie 53.1.1.1

          @greywarshark +100 on your posts.

        • Pieixoto 53.1.1.2

          This statement: “Grant Robertson has the sort of effusive persona that I distrust as false, not indicating the real person” makes me really sad. Since when have we had an issue with having a warm, kind political leader? Isn’t being good, kind people who really bloody care what the left is all about? I haven’t heard one person who has worked with Grant say a single negative thing about him – far from it. Those who have worked with him in any capacity have become fierce supporters and speak of him fondly. That gives me hope.

  54. xanthe 54

    what a sad business isnt there anyone who actually believes in trying to do whats right.
    next please !

  55. greywarshark 55

    Words for poor NZ and those trying to strengthen democracy and the majority who aren’t in the top 10% and the next few deciles trying to get there.
    http://www.metrolyrics.com/the-boxer-lyrics-simon-and-garfunkel.html

    THE BOXER by Paul Simon

    I am just a poor boy though my story’s seldom told
    I’ve squandered my resistance
    For a pocketful of mumbles
    Such are promises
    All lies and jest
    Still the man hears what he wants to hear
    And disregards the rest

    When I left my home and my family
    I was no more than a boy
    In the company of strangers
    In the quiet of the railway station, runnin’ scared
    Laying low, seeking out the poorer quarters
    Where the ragged people go
    Looking for the places only they would know
    Lie-la-lie
    Lie-la-lie-la-la-la-lie
    La-la-lie-la-lie

    Asking only workman’s wages
    I come lookin’ for a job but I get no offers
    Just a come-on from the whores on Seventh Avenue [on the beltway]
    I do declare, there were times when I was so lonesome
    I took some comfort

    And I’m laying out my winter clothes
    And wishing I was gone, goin’ home
    Where the New York City winters aren’t bleedin’ me
    Leadin’ me, goin’ home

    In the clearing stands a boxer and a fighter by his trade
    And he carries the reminders
    Of every glove that laid him down or cut him
    ‘Til he cried out in his anger and his shame
    I am leaving, I am leaving
    But the fighter still remains

    Lie-la-lie
    Lie-la-lie-la-la-la-lie
    La-la-lie-la-lie
    Published by
    Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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