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Shane Jones the smoko room candidate

Written By: - Date published: 8:16 am, August 26th, 2013 - 146 comments
Categories: labour, Shane Jones - Tags:

shane-jonesThen there were two.  Shane Jones has announced his candidacy for the Labour leadership.

From the Herald this morning:

List MP Shane Jones is entering the race for the Labour leadership, saying he believes he can attract blue-collar workers back to the fold and take on “the $50 million gorilla”, Prime Minister John Key.

Mr Jones said last night his style of “smoko room” politics and debating ability were the best way to beat National and get working-class voters to turn to Labour, which he said had lost its relevancy.

Up against two former diplomats, Mr Jones is pitching himself as the non-PC, grass-roots candidate. Taking a swipe at those in his party with academic backgrounds – despite himself having an MA from Harvard University – Mr Jones said his style “might not resonate in the common room, but rest assured it will be relevant in the smoko room”.

I would not describe Shane as a “grass roots” candidate.  My impression is that support for him amongst the membership is sparse although it is there.

He acknowledged his underdog status, but believed his focus on “bread and butter” issues rather than beltway political issues would have support.

“The Labour brand is a proud and true brand. Unfortunately, we have allowed that brand to become irrelevant in how a whole bunch of New Zealanders see their personal circumstances.

“The 800,000 who didn’t vote last time need to see Labour as relevant to what they need to help bring their kids up. It’s simple stuff: jobs, income, security, sport, life.”

I have not been able to track down a press release or a website but he does have a facebook page here.

Mike Williams is right in that Shane will inject a degree of humour into the campaign and that the distribution of his preferences could be vital.

In related room Grant Robertson said this morning that he can unify the Labour Party.  He denied letting Shearer flounder and said that he supported Shearer fully.  He promised  that there would be a position in his senior team available for David Cunliffe if he was leader.  He did not see the motion of no confidence in Shearer.  He also used the word “mythology” when talking about ABC.  He promised to unify the party and lead it to victory in 2014.  The audio is here.

146 comments on “Shane Jones the smoko room candidate ”

  1. Tiger Mountain 1

    Jones would appear to be running interference for ABC and his preferences could play a spoiler role depending on your pick, but but, the Greens have the man/woman/Māori thing sorted in their co leadership so can Labour members afford to ignore that factor in the selection process?

    • weka 1.1

      Maybe that’s a typo in the Herald and Jones is really running for deputy leader.

      • marty mars 1.1.1

        I think he has come in as a counterweight to grant which will allow david to be in the middle and give shane a chance of getting deputy. That will be another step closer to shane’s ultimate goal.

    • karol 1.2

      Greens have the man/woman/Māori thing sorted in their co leadership so can Labour members afford to ignore that factor in the selection process?

      And Labour’s woman candidate is?

      • Colonial Viper 1.2.1

        Still got time to convince someone to stand.

        • karol 1.2.1.1

          If Jacinda stood, would she be an adequate foil to Jones as spoiler? Would she take votes from Robertson or Cunliffe?

          • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.1.1

            No, she’s not up to taking the crown this round, for her maximum political career prospects she’s made the right move to not stand.

            • karol 1.2.1.1.1.1

              It wasn’t a serious suggestion for a leadership bid – but then, neither is Shane Jones.

              I realise there’s no woman set to contest the leadership – neither is their a Maori contender.

              • Colonial Viper

                Understood. IMO Jones is being presented to us in order to take some of the microscope time off Robertson’s performance within the recent Robertson-Shearer leadership pairing.

                • Tracey

                  Would Jones agree to that in return for being made deputy? Big risk to Jones to let himself be seen as a sideshow (again).

                  • Polish Pride

                    Actually it is a good move for Jones so that he can be seen as something other than a sideshow by the majority of New Zealanders. It will hopefully give people the opportunity to see him in a more serious light and hopefully a bit more distance from what he is most famous for to date.

              • lurgee

                Shane Jones isn’t Maori?

              • Takere

                Spoken like typical pakeha … bigot.

          • Anne 1.2.1.1.2

            If Jacinda stands karol I think you could take it she is there to be a spoiler… She’s not ready. Hasn’t been there long enough and is lacking experience. We’ve just seen what happens to a leader who is thrown in the deep end before he’s ready. Jacinda is young – only in her early thirties – time is on her side.

      • bad12 1.2.2

        The 3 most likely to have ‘any’ wide electoral support would seem to be Jacinda Adhern, Nanaia Mahuta and Lousia Wall,

        None of them seem to have expressed an interest in standing and i should imagine that if any of them did they would simply distract votes going to the ‘favorite’ David Cunliffe…

  2. karol 2

    Shane Jones sounds as though he sees “working class” as being a very male thing: smoko room? Reminds me of my Dad and all his very male dominated clubs (working men’s and sports clubs), back int he 50s & 60s – with women in the kitchens making sandwiches.

    And my Dad was a Nat voting Muldoonist.

    Shane Jones, the mid-20th century candidate!

    • Chooky 2.1

      +1 Karol…he has soiled his copy book with the 21st century woman vote

      • Greywarbler 2.1.1

        +1 Karol
        It wasn’t Labour at the forefront of women moving up from under – it was women coalescing and acting together, thinking, discussing, arguing and lobbying. Maybe they can do that again, this time to save New Zealand from becoming a low-rent drudge in the world.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.2

      +1 Karol.

      An attempt to connect with the “working class” that ignores women. Yeah right. Shane Jones is a small part of the reason Kristine Bartlett is in the news.

    • Mary 2.3

      If Jones got anywhere near the leadership he would be a liability. It’s bores me to say it but as Brian Edwards said “nobody survives blue movies”. He would be constant fodder for any opposition so must be ruled out. I’d even go so far as saying he’s a liability to the party as an MP. If not for his attitude towards women then that silly childish and condescending intonation in his voice when he tries to be cute. For that alone he deserves to be sacked.

    • Populuxe1 2.4

      That sounds like you gender policing to me – or do you think working women eat their lunch somewhere else in the twenty-first century.

      Muldoon would probably be somewhere to the left of Neoliberal Labour these days.

    • David H 2.5

      Yeah same Karol, my dad near had a heart attack when I told him i was voting Labour, this was just before the 72 Election. And after, well the silence was deafening…

    • Roy 2.6

      Well said Karol.

    • newsense 2.7

      Yeh- it sounds like another pitch to this mythical waitakere man malarky

      ‘there seems to be like Key a nostalgia for the 70s, or the past.

      Surely they’d be more support for Mallard than Jones? At least Mallard gives it a go, even if that isn’t always popular.

      Can’t think of anything much that he’s done. Can think of what he hasn’t done- won an electorate seat.

      Maybe he is this great figure in waiting, but what he’s done so far with the opportunities he’s had seem very very underwhelming.

  3. Not a PS Staffer 3

    Great news. All the Women’s vote will roll in behind Cunliffe now.

    I just jeard that his announcement is a surprise to the Whangarei and Northland LECs!

    • Skinny 3.1

      Well that’s not quite correct as it’s no surprise at all to me ( in a position to comment) He is running for deputy if you cut to the chase. Having heard him on Radiolive and now just on Radio NZ, he comprehensively dealt to Robertson. He has my tick of approval as deputy as he will get some of the non voters off their arse to vote, win against Sharples replacement and now given a platform be combatable against quote Jones “the 50 million dollar gorilla that is John Key. But hey it’s up to Caucus who gets deputy!

  4. just saying 4

    Except, in case the poli-wonky-media types have forgotten, there is no such thing as a smoko room anymore. They haven’t existed for some time.

    Shane jones may not know this because he probably only saw the inside of one (back in the day) when he went to pick up his car at the garage at lunchtime.

    A phony pitching to a myth – a winning strategy. Go Labour!

    • cricklewood 4.1

      Plenty of work sites still have a ‘smoko room’ sure no one smokes in them now but none the less there terminology remains. Sounds better than the ‘Lunch room’

  5. Anne 5

    He also used the word “mythology” when talking about ABC.

    It wasn’t mythology and Grant knows it. Jane Clifton’s latest pondering in the Listener and to some extent Vernon Small’s article yesterday are testament to that. What I suspect is: the membership of that club has dropped, and those left don’t wield quite as much power in caucus that they did a year ago.

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    Live TV Election Debate: Shane Jones versus John Key!!!

    Labour better hope all its hoarding signs are up by air time. Because there will be no volunteers left afterwards. This match up simply does not work, does it.

  7. Takere 7

    Great to see Jonesee putting his hand up …… now there’s an highly intelligent man. Ability to connect with the working classes and korero with Key and kick his arse. He’s got the best chance out of all the candidates to broaden the base for the party and tap into the 880,000 non voters instead of fighting over the swing-voters, 3 or 4 percent of them between the nat’s & the Greens. Labours last hope before oblivion!

    • Tracey 7.1

      were they mainly men in smoko rooms takere seeing as you have met with them all and I didn’t?

      • Takere 7.1.1

        I reckon you fancy him tracy? Maybe a hook up in a smoko room is a fantasy of yours?

        • bad12 7.1.1.1

          From the look of your contribution to this Post Takere i would suggest it would be you rather than Tracey that would rush to get His rags off for a little tryst with Jones,

          You will have to time your ‘hitting on’ of Shane well tho, He might not have much ‘steam’ in the tank if you catch Him to soon after a ‘red blooded males’ video session….

    • North 7.2

      Takere = Dreamer.

  8. Nicolas 8

    Funny that he talks about “simple” stuff like jobs when, during the period he was the chairman of Sealord, the company chartered a Ukrainian vessel, hiring foreign workers instead of locals. Foreign workers who, we all know, are often subjected to inhumane working conditions.

    And what the hell is an injection of “humour”, in the political sense? There is nothing funny about the prospect of having Shane Jones become a minister, let alone the Prime Minister, come 2014.

    Being a list MP, what’s Labour’s excuse for still keeping this guy around?

    • Tracey 8.1

      source?

      ‘the chairman of Sealord, the company chartered a Ukrainian vessel, hiring foreign workers instead of locals”

  9. Linz 9

    Can someone tell me, please, about the preferential voting system?
    Is it a good idea to vote for just the candidate you like best and not give a second and third choice so they don’t get any points? Or could you vote for first and second choice and not give your third choice any points?

    • Don't worry. Be happy. 9.1

      This is a point I wanted clarified too so, this morning, I rang Labour Party HQ, Wellington and navigated through the call list to Geoff Haywood. Seems the Party have yet to decide, tomorrow probably, if your vote will count at all (be valid) if you vote only for the candidate you want (in my case DC).

      I do not want to give any support at all to Shearer Clone Robertson or to Shane ‘Stallion’ Jones and I should not be forced to.

      It seems that the Party will decide this issue ‘to be consistent with voting for other Party positions’…I would rather they decide to be ‘consistent’ with democratic rights…or even just winning the next election.

      Expect a lot of ‘invalid votes’ esp. from women

    • Colonial Viper 9.2

      Your 2nd choice vote will only be counted if your first choice loses.

      So if you do have a real preferred 2nd choice, you should put them down as “2”. Doing so won’t disadvantage your first choice preference in any way.

      If you have no real preferred 2nd choice (or third choice) leave them blank.

      • Skinny 9.2.1

        If you leave the 2nd or 3rd preference blank ‘only plugging for 1 candidate usually makes your vote invalid. I guess this issue will be stated on the form.

        • Rich 9.2.1.1

          I guess they may be assuming a sophisticated electorate who understand voting systems.

          If your preferred candidate gets eliminated, then with three candidates it comes down to a choice between the other two. If you really feel they are equally unacceptable, toss a coin, then if either win, leave the party and don’t vote for them next time. There is an alternative and it starts with G. (and unless they change their rules, they elect theirs leaders by delegate votes after a consensus has been reached at branch meetings, or something like that).

  10. Ant 10

    Shane Jones is popular with blue collar workers in the same way as the guy that gets fired for looking at porn on the office computer – popular to be laughed about.

    • Populuxe1 10.1

      Meh. He paid for it out of his own money when he found out it had gone onto his work card. He admitted it. And come on, it’s just porn, enjoyrd by approximately 99.999% of males and a surprsingly significant proportion of females. No one cares.

      • QoT 10.1.1

        Ah, the good old “why do you hate porn” argument.

        He also chartered a plane on the credit card. Guess what: it’s not a “controversy” because people hate planes.

        (You may actually need this spelled out to you, so: it’s because people hate unethical misuse of public funds.)

  11. Hami Shearlie 11

    Women won’t vote for Jones, South Auckland won’t vote for Robertson (“I can unify the party – yeah right!) so who is left – The obvious choice of the members and the wider public and someone who looks and sounds like a Prime Minister – Mr David Cunliffe!!

  12. Hami Shearlie 12

    Apart from everything else, Grant Robertson hasn’t even been an MP in a Government, let alone a Cabinet Minister – David Cunliffe has been both, has been tried and tested, and not found wanting in any capacity. Labour can’t afford another wild gamble. And neither can the people of NZ, who are suffering under the government of John Key!

  13. Tracey 13

    interesting media we have when they clearly consider being gay is an impediment but paying for porn on the public purse isn’t.

    oops fat finger syndrome, hit caps lock again.

    [fixed for you = MS]

    Thanks MS

  14. Rich 14

    MA from Harvard University

    It’s just next door to MIT right?

    All he has to do is pretend it’s in Otahuhu and nobody will be the wiser.

  15. Tracey 15

    “We may trust the prime minister, but we don’t necessarily believe him.

    A majority of New Zealanders do not fully believe what John Key says, despite rating him as a strong and effective leader whom they trust to run the country, the latest Fairfax Media-Ipsos poll testing voters’ attitude to our political leaders shows.

    Asked if they fully believed what Key said, 58.6 per cent said no and just 23.5 per cent yes.

    Ironically, in the poll taken before David Shearer stood down as Labour leader, the man who was widely criticised for his stumbles actually rated higher on that score than the PM – despite forgetting to declare a New York bank account containing more than $50,000.

    About 33 per cent said they fully believed what Shearer said, although more – 43 per cent – said they did not.”

    the electorate gets what they deserve. To say you trust someone who you also say is a liar is a sad indictment of the electorate. HOW do you trust someone you don’t believe?

    Again someone with good qualities is drummed out of politics.

    Alice? Alice? You can have your looking glass back, I am going to bed.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      “HOW do you trust someone you don’t believe?”

      Because you think he is lying for good reason, or that he is lying because he’s simply being a savvy politician, etc.

      • Tracey 15.1.1

        Then wouldn’t your answer be

        He’s a lair but he has good reason”

        Not

        He’s a liar but I trust him.

        It’s being presented as though the electorate is stupid.

        • Short Plank 15.1.1.1

          We trust him to lie?

          You know where you are when you know someone’s lying because their mouth is opening and closing. It’s much harder to know where you are with a politician if they occasionally tell the truth.

  16. weka 16

    List MP Shane Jones is entering the race for the Labour leadership, saying he believes he can attract blue-collar workers back to the fold and take on “the $50 million gorilla”, Prime Minister John Key.

    Mr Jones said last night his style of “smoko room” politics and debating ability were the best way to beat National and get working-class voters to turn to Labour, which he said had lost its relevancy.

    Enough with the identity politics, when are we going to get back to the real issues?

  17. Craig Y 17

    Actually, I can understand Jones’ aspirations and those of Maori who support him. Fair enough too. And given that capitalism was built on the back of appropriated Maori land and the disruption of Maori culture and society, and consequently resulted in institutional racism as a key element of New Zealand society since then, the identity politics/economic inequality ‘dichotomy’ looks even more ridiculous in that context. How can Maori-inclusive policies not address the latter?

    It is past time that New Zealand had a Maori Prime Minister. I understand those aspirations and it’s just a damned shame he’s standing against Grant Robertson and David Cunliffe, two equally high-calibre candidates. Added to, like Cunliffe, Jones has a Minister of Public Administration, albeit not from Harvard.

    And I agree about the core issues – which should be public service capacity and quality under Key, and the elaboration and development of a capital gains tax policy instead of totally focusing on the iniquity of privatisation.

    • weka 17.1

      Hi Craig,

      Yeah, but Jones is pretty happy with capitalism isn’t he? And wants a slice of the capitalist pie for some Maori without disrupting the bakery too much. I agree with you about Maori-inclusive politics, but don’t really see Jones as a champion of that.

      (btw, my comment about identity politics was deeply sarcastic, as I noticed a complete lack of comment along these lines from the people that usually condemn identity politics when feminists or queer people speak up)

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.1

        Someone in Labour finally makes a reference to class politics and the politics of poverty and wealth. Its ok right? That is the root of the Labour movement after all.

        • weka 17.1.1.1

          “Someone in Labour finally makes a reference to class politics and the politics of poverty and wealth. Its ok right? That is the root of the Labour movement after all.”

          Sure it’s ok, good even. The problem is when class is elevated above other identities.

          As for Labour’s roots, are you suggesting that Labour should reflect the socal and cultural ethos of 1916? Am curious how class identity politics sees this. In 1916 (and before) white working class men organised politically, but if it were happening now, it wouldn’t just be white working class men, would it? And it wouldn’t just be the agenda of white working class men’s issues, right?

          • karol 17.1.1.1.1

            The splitting of the politics of gender, sexuality and “race” from that of class, seems to assume that working class doesn’t include women, brown & LGBTI people, etc.

            • Colonial Viper 17.1.1.1.1.1

              That’s because class issues are broader and more encompassing of entire populations, entire towns and districts even. Class issues are primarily those of unemployment, poverty and poor working conditions and low pay. Discussions about equal gender or LGBTI representation on corporate boards doesn’t come into it.

              • weka

                Good grief man, you really have no idea what feminism has been on about for basically the whole of your life.

                And. If you want to look at class issues, look at people politicised around class and what happened to women in those movements and why they left them and created second wave feminism.

                Then look at all the other so called ‘identities’ and ask yourself why in 2013 we arguing about class with those things separated out. There is a bloody good reason.

          • Colonial Viper 17.1.1.1.2

            Sure it’s ok, good even. The problem is when class is elevated above other identities.

            You really think that working class issues have been elevated above other identity politics issues in the last 30 years?

            There’s no votes in supporting the interests of the bottom 10% of the population. That’s the sad fact.

            • weka 17.1.1.1.2.1

              “Sure it’s ok, good even. The problem is when class is elevated above other identities.”

              “You really think that working class issues have been elevated above other identity politics issues in the last 30 years?”

              Not at all. I mean in conversations like this that divide politics up into class politics and other identity politics. In those conversations a heirarchy gets created where class gets elevated.

              eg http://thestandard.org.nz/shane-jones-smoko-room-candidate/#comment-685582

        • QoT 17.1.1.2

          Someone in Labour finally makes a reference to class politics

          But is that what Jones did? Yes, he used words like “jobs” and “income” and referred to his target demographic as “blue-collar” … but how do we know that that’s about a class analysis of politics and not shorthand for “working-class hetero men who think the bitches have been getting too uppity”?

      • Tracey 17.1.2

        What about Nanaia Mahuta. Or is she too female for those maori who support Jones?

        • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 17.1.2.1

          Other than being uncharismatic, untalented, and with no experience at anything she’d be perfect.

  18. Mary 18

    Listening to Grant Robertson and Shane Jones this morning knowing that currently these were the only two contenders hit home the seriousness of the trouble Labour’s currently in. To think that without Cunliffe this is all Labour can muster is pretty depressing. Things are so bad for Labour it’s almost as if it’s become Cunliffe’s duty to New Zealand to stand. Of course I’m sure Cunliffe will stand, but that’s what it felt like imagining that these were the only two people Labour were putting forward to deal to the morally bankrupt Key and his greedy henchmen. It’d be back to the future.

  19. Mary 19

    “Mike Williams is right in that Shane will inject a degree of humour into the campaign…”

    Yes Mike, just what we need at the moment. One clown recommending another clown.

    • Skinny 19.1

      Oh such doom and gloom! The fact is Labour were 10,000 votes shy of taking the benches last time. If Jones can inspire 50,000 unengaged non voters from the last election to show up at the voting booths and a quarter of the 800,000 turn up also then Nact are tossed out.

      • Mary 19.1.1

        Firstly, I don’t think he can. Secondly, even if he could it wouldn’t last long. People would very soon get sick of his condescending failed attempts at cute humour that just makes him come across as a complete git. He’s just way too undisciplined to be even an MP let alone leader or deputy leader. Just imagine how he’d react in the House to the constant jibes he’d inevitably get, and not just the movies thing either, but his attitudes towards women as well. The guy just isn’t viable. I sincerely hope that Robertson talking him up as a possible senior minister doesn’t come to anything. Cunliffe must surely have the smarts to see this.

        • Ant 19.1.1.1

          I don’t get where this idea that he’s somehow going to get the non vote out comes from? Some success he’s had in the past that no one else knows about?

          He doesn’t even have a land based electorate.

      • Ron 19.1.2

        One would expect that however many non voters turned out, I would expect them to vote much the same way as the rest of the country so you would expect last election that National would have got slightly more than Labour from the extra voters

  20. Tanz 20

    Isn’t it a bit rich for Grant Robertson, who comes arcross very well in the media, to be saying that people arn’t voting because they fell like politics is something that is ‘done to them.’
    No, it’s just that those in power think its okay to run roughshod over the elctorate over many important issues without actually asking the electorate first. There are so many agendas in place that Joe Public never gets asked.

    With both the major parties, our democracy isn’t what it used to be. Shane Jones would be a good leader, he’s kind of grass-roots, a good bloke.

  21. Delia 21

    Watch old Shane laugh and sneer at women’s issue if he were Leader. The guy who forgets that many women vote Labour. Leadership material – forget it – from a so called gelding.

    • Tracey 21.1

      I have searched for the gelding comment and can only find it referred to in blogs with no source.

      • karol 21.1.1

        First up on google:

        Shane Jones gelding moment, via NZ Herald: On gender quotas:

        Mr Jones said he had spent yesterday in and around Kerikeri and Kaitaia talking about the proposal, “and the overwhelming response is the public doesn’t want the country run by geldings”.

        “Of course it’s important that we have a diverse set of personalities in our caucus but merit cannot be disowned for mediocrity, whether it’s Maoris, women or anyone else.”

        Mr Jones said most people in the provinces – where Labour needed to recapture support – were focused on the economy.

        “They don’t care who is going to exercise the power provided they’re talented, they’ve got merit and they can develop a solution to the economic woes affecting so many people.”

        • Lanthanide 21.1.1.1

          Yeah, was just going to post the same. Tracey can’t have searched very hard.

        • Tracey 21.1.1.2

          Thanks. I searched google. My terms were shane jones gelding. What I got was four blog comments, all of which I visited but none quoted the source.

          • karol 21.1.1.2.1

            hmmm. Curious. I used the same search terms.

            • Lanthanide 21.1.1.2.1.1

              As did I.

            • Macro 21.1.1.2.1.2

              Google is NOT the same for everyone! While two can enter the same search terms, that does not mean they will get the same results – because google has been looking at what you normally view and what “interests” each user. It then makes decisions upon what your previous browsing has been. The results can be quite dissimilar. And you thought the GCSB Bill was scarey… Google have been at it for some time.

              • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                Three words: duck duck go.

                PS: that said, a search for “Shane Jones gelding” on duck duck go returns equestrian news as its top comment 😆

                PPS: Macro, to paraphrase Weka, can you really not tell the difference between Google and the NSA?

    • Mary 21.2

      Jones would be at home in the Australian Liberal Party. He could get a cameo on The GC.

  22. Craig Y 22

    About the only problem I have with Jones is his potential incompatibility with our Green allies.

    • Mary 22.1

      How about being laughed at every day in the House?

    • lprent 22.2

      …potential incompatibility with our Green allies..

      Potential? They dislike him as much as I do. They tend to view him as being the member for Sealords and other corporates..

      My objections go a different way. Shane Jones is a dickhead who can’t help himself. He is serially incompetent. He screws up politically on average about every 18 months to two years and has done so from the time I first noticed him.

      Rather than getting better as he gets more experienced, he is getting more and more crazy over time. After running this site over the last 6 years, I class him amongst the worst performing of all of the MP’s, just simply because he ALWAYS screws up. Basically he virtually defines himself as being a complete lazy dickhead who appears to be incapable of learning.

      He is a complete liability for the Labour party and should have been dumped long ago. Good at losing seats and not much else.

      • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 22.2.1

        All Jones’s problems flow from his laziness. He’s been handed everything on a plate his entire life by Northland Maori tribal interests desperate for someone to lead them, and on paper he looks great. Bilingual, strong speaker, proficient at the protocol of the marae, intelligent. But he’s just plain lazy. He was anointed as Northland’s future Maori leader at a young age and he doesn’t have to work for it. He always looks to obtain the maximum personal benefit with the bare minimum of personal effort. That inevitably bites him – as lprent observed, about every 18 months – when he makes a complete cockup of something that would have gone smoothly if he’d just taken the time to actually read the goddamn briefing papers. But nooooo, that sort of stuff – work – is for people who aren’t The Chosen One.

      • Mary 22.2.2

        That was extremely dumb of Williams to encourage him. Lowers the tone of the whole exercise.

        I’m getting absolutely sick to death of seeing and hearing Williams. Went to sleep after seeing him blathering on on The Nation last night, then woke up to hear his self-obsessed opinions on Morning Report, then all of a sudden he’s spouting off again on Ninetonoon. Had to turn him off. Isn’t there someone else who’s not such an “I” specialist? “I’ve done this” and “I’ve done that” and “I used to be…so I know”. I wish that Mike Williams would just go away.

        • GarethGee 22.2.2.1

          He tried to but Owen Glenn wouldn’t give him a job.

          Nor, it would seem, would anyone else. He’s gotta make a crust somehow.

        • gnomic 22.2.2.2

          Would that be Mike “I’ve got three houses” Williams? What about shut up and go away? No chance of course, he’ll just keep on blathering, and being dragged out to pontificate at any conceivable opportunity by Radio NZ et al.

    • Murray 22.3

      I would call that a strength. Until Labour put distance between themselves and Greens they will always be open to criticism as being the dog that’s wagged by the tail. Jones can destroy Key in a debate.

      • Colonial Viper 22.3.1

        Jones can destroy Key in a debate.

        Can you point to an example in the House where this has happened, say in Question Time.

        • lprent 22.3.1.1

          …say in Question Time

          Indeed. I can’t remember ever seeing him do anything like that. I have this problem when I’m listening to speeches. I listen for content and belief rather than phrasing. Jones isn’t bad at making up a fine sounding but essentially meaningless speech. On the occasions when I’ve heard him I tend to spend most of the speech pretty bored because there is nothing of substance.

          • Mary 22.3.1.1.1

            Some journo in the next couple of weeks should ask Jones what he’d say to those who’ve said he’s not too bad at making up a speech that might sound fine but which is essentially meaningless and has nothing of substance.

          • lprent 22.3.1.1.2

            Asking about his wealth of ministerial experience would also help. From Oct 2007-Nov 2008

            Jones was made a Cabinet Minister with the portfolios of Building and Construction, and was made an Associate Minister in charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations

            That wikipedia is a bit damning. It’d be fun keeping an eye on the edits to it over the coming weeks. Even with that it reads better than Grant Robertson’s one in terms of ministerial experience.

            The Labour Caucus really is a bit of a disaster zone when you’re hunting for experienced ministers to become PM at present.

            Having untried MP’s as PM is a bit of a mugs game in my opinion. Sure Key has been an electoral success in 2008, but only just by the one seat in 2011. But his leadership of the country has been marred by fumbling, being largely incompetent (the disaster of bulding ChCh comes to mind), and has fostered a level of distrust of politicians that I’d hoped we’d lost with Shipley.

        • QoT 22.3.1.2

          According to the Parliament website, he’s only asked 9 primary questions this term. And 15 in the last term.

          • lprent 22.3.1.2.1

            I thought he’d been trying for the record that David Farrar seems so concerned with (the Labour MP with the fewest questions in the house). It appears that he is making progress towards that target.

            Bearing in mind the remaining sitting days, I’d anticipate that he should reach either 13 or 14 by the end of the term.

  23. gobsmacked 23

    Shane Jones on Radio Live with Jackson & Tamihere. Geting the nutty talkback endorsement.

    He needs to learn that when people ring up and say “I support you …”, it’s important to wait for the “because …” before thanking them. 🙂

  24. tracey 24

    What have jones and cunliffe and robertson achieved during their careers as mps. What bills mark their past achievements.

    • Colonial Viper 24.1

      Bills? Meh. How about real action.

      Cunliffe broke up multi-billion dollar Telecom.

  25. Adam 25

    Interesting to see the “lazy Jones” meme in this thread. Sounds like “Maori = lazy”, or for those old enough to remember, “Matt Rata reads comics.”
    Channeling Andrea Vance perhaps, who measures indolence based on how many times a day an MP calls her.
    And why do all these highly-educated people on this site think “gelding” refers to female parts? Obviously not spent enough time in the country.

    • Te Reo Putake 25.1

      Good comment, Adam, you make a very perceptive point about the ‘lazy maori’ connection. It fits nicely alongside the strawman issue of Robertson’s sexuality and Cunliffe’s supposed smugness in the righty narrative.

      • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 25.1.1

        Case studies: the “Nanny State” showers fiasco in 2008 and the Bill Liu immigration clusterfuck. Both damaging to Labour, both the direct result of the Chosen One taking the easy option and not reading the briefing papers and not seeking advice from experts.

        • Adam 25.1.1.1

          Nanny state showers fiasco: A Green idea, foisted on the minister at Cabinet level, then the Greens ran away when it blew up. What about getting a new building act through that has allowed people to do renovations again without getting bogged down with red tape?
          Bill Liu – if ministers don’t have ministerial discretion, why have them? Almost a third of appeals to minister on immigration matters are successful which is why people do them. Jones didn’t believe the officials, the High Court didn’t believe the officials, so who were these supposed “experts”. Shearer, who had never been a minister, panicked and benched Jones for a year. Your slanderous history is falling apart.

    • Mary 25.2

      “Interesting to see the “lazy Jones” meme in this thread. Sounds like “Maori = lazy”, or for those old enough to remember, “Matt Rata reads comics.””

      What utter rubbish you write. If you were correct you would’ve heard the same thing said about Parekura Horomia but you didn’t because Parekura wasn’t lazy. Mat Rata was equally renown for great things he did, through hard work, such fighting for introduction of the Waitangi Tribunal. Rata walked away from the Labour Party in the late 1970s because he didn’t like the direction it was taking. Couldn’t imagine Shane Jones ever doing that. Heaven knows he’s had plenty of opportunities.

    • weka 25.3

      “And why do all these highly-educated people on this site think “gelding” refers to female parts?”

      Context (or, women are gelded males because they have no balls). Although myself, I thought he was referring to his male colleagues who let all these wimmin into the party and in charge of things. Doubly insulting that way.

      • karol 25.3.1

        Over-heard in the crowd at New Lynn today:

        “Shane Jones said the people who object to his gelding comment have university degrees. Jones has a degree from Harvard, FFS!” – or words to that effect.

      • gnomic 25.3.2

        The ‘gelding’ bit is apparently a reference to a quote from a president of the USA named Grover Cleveland. It seems Grover thought the American people did not want a gelding in the White House. The relevance of this to NZ politics today escapes me. Maybe Jones can explain, that’s assuming he wasn’t just babbling nonsense.

    • lprent 25.4

      There have been a number of hard-working Labour Maori MPs. Shane Jones is not amongst their number.

      He has been bloody irritating because of the amount of effort he has caused me over time here. You can’t imagine how irritating it has been trying to defend a Labour MP when they screw up again and again, when the refrain keeps going through your head of “stupid arrogant dickhead”. Eventually I stopped trying to defend him, and added him to the “complete fuckwit” list. It is so liberating…

      I think that anyone who is engaged with politics has also done the same thing long ago, or they’re on the right in a faux support mode.

  26. Virginia Linton 26

    Shane being lazy has nothing to do with being Maori. He’s just lazy. When kids and young people in their dozens were committing suicide earlier this year, where was Shane? Where is his big gob about poverty, housing, education, and caring for the Far North’s elderly (and not just in occasional posturing sound bites)? He’s not a proactive Labour MP up here and I’ve never heard him espouse Labour values; Shane is out for Shane. As for not being the Pope, well duh. Personally I like leaders to be passionate, hard-working, inspirational, aspirational, and there’s nothing wrong with ethics and integrity either. His ex is the real deal; I think she should replace Shane high on the list.

    • Adam 26.1

      You are confusing sound bites with action. You probably think Hone Harawira is effective.

      • karol 26.1.1

        Really, Adam?

        Harawira: Feed the Kids Bill, breakfast for Sth Auckland children, on the front line for Glen Innes housing protest, on various street demos, great speech at the Town Hall against the GCSB Bill.

        Shane Jones: defending the rights of the likes of Sealord, and…… ?

        • Adam 26.1.1.1

          Feed the Kids Bill = band aid rather than structural change (and now appropriated as corporate PR by National’s Fonterra wing); houses still being trucked out of Glen Innes (to house his constituents); Shearer had a more substantial Town Hall speech, just delivered it with usual crashing ineptitude.
          Too bloody right defending the rights of Sealord. Why would you believe anything Peter Talley tells you?

          • lurgee 26.1.1.1.1

            How much structural change do you think a singleton MP is capable of carrying out?

            Sorry, what was that you were saying about soundbites? Try to think a bit more before posting!

        • Takere 26.1.1.2

          When labour was the government, Fenton defended Labours position to do nothing about the issues with NZ fishing companies ….. and now? In 2001 the minimum wage was about, $10.25. 8 years later $11.25 ….. talking about lazy and ineffective??

    • Mary 26.2

      “Where is his big gob about poverty, housing, education, and caring for the Far North’s elderly…”

      Nowhere, because Jones is a right-winger.

  27. Tim 27

    At one time – not that long ago, Tau Henare used to grace the smoko rooms too! Of course he didn’t have the luxury of dwelling in ‘2 worlds’ and nor was his edgikayshun as spektacyalah. But dwell he did in blokish cameraderie (pulling the tits of many a fine bloke).
    But then again, so did Paul Tollich amongst members of the Tramways Union – then I learn (courtesy of a TS contributor) that he’s an ABC man. Go figure!
    Funny old world.
    I’m thinking Websters need to come up with new definitions for ‘principle’ and ‘honesty’

    • North 27.1

      +++ Tim. Yeah. A current very activist Maori union activist of my acquaintance cracks me up when he hoots about “Ray Henry of the union”. What a dog !

      As to Jones, he’s been demonstrating for a long time that he’s a fake fulla. Hone’s ten times the man.

      I know plenty of Labour people, not just women, who simply can’t countenance the prospect of Jones anywhere near the box seat.

      Bro’……imagine trying to convert pompous talking down into “street” ? Vainglorious wahanui I say !

  28. Virginia Linton 28

    Shane … Action … Oxymoron.

  29. Virginia Linton 29

    Shane did not approach the Northland or Tai Tokerau LECs and hasn’t been endorsed by them. He’s been endorsed by Sonny Tau who is a member of the Maori Party.

  30. Murray Olsen 30

    Who are all the new people who have suddenly appeared to promote Sealord Jones? The paranoia in me suggests they might actually be visitors from the right, interested in seeing Labour lose.

  31. North 31

    Oh yeah, OK, but our mate Takere’s endorsed him. That should be enough.

    What……Sonny as well ? Oh that’s it. Step aside Dave.

  32. millsy 32

    Shane Jones is more preferable than GR in my onion. If nothing else he wouldn’t be caught dead taking a photo of a tofu and spinach panini to put on his Facebook page in some fancy fancy cafe. He would be down by the local reserve with some fish and chips. We need more fish and chip eaters and less panini eaters in the NZLP.

  33. lurgee 33

    What, are the workers not to eat tofu? Elitist!

  34. Tracey 34

    Doing what I can to find what each candidate stands for.

    ““Well, look, I’ve said some colourful things in the past, and I finally found something that I can agree with the Greens on – ie, regulating the power industry.””

    Labour’s Shane Jones says he now fully supports his party’s energy policy despite earlier saying he had reservations.

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/labours-shane-jones-realises-he-does-support-partys-energy-policy-139280

    “I am keen to defang these misapprehensions that are abounding that somehow industry has disappeared from our purview.

    “Nothing could be further from the truth and if my visit provides the opportunity to reinforce the centrality of jobs, the importance of industry and the need for a future Labour-led government to assuage whatever anxieties might be there in the minds of employers or future investors then I am up for the task,” he said.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/taranaki-daily-news/news/8937854/Labour-duo-keen-to-talk-jobs-and-growth

  35. Vanessa Rare 35

    SHANE JONES has got everything that is needed to lead Labour and become a serious threat to National. His potency from the time he entered parliament has been standout. His intellect, guts and fearlessness, I believe hasn’t been matched. For me is orator skills and power has echo’s and reminders of the late great Mr Lange. We need Shane’s strength up the front, he will not back down from National and he’ll give them as good as Labour gets with a curiously tactical and strategic edge. Labour needs his strength to lead them, and with his front row of top guns flanking him, he will be unstoppable in the process of drop kicking National OUT!! Only SHANE JONES has the grit to push Labour forward, no one is as strong as SHANE JONES in Labour this is for sure. If he can keep a calm and poker face appearance to himself when under the stress and pressure that comes with being a PM, he’ll win the Country over. Cause lets face it, there’s more poor people in this country than there are rich, so we have to win, cause the poor wont vote for Key, but they will if the Leader of Labour shows any signs of weakness, like those in the past that have tried but haven’t lasted. I’ve always had a feeling for a long time that SHANE JONES will be the Prime Minister of Aotearoa one day, and he’ll be chosen to be there and he’ll be loved cause he’ll reverse all the shit that National has done, and the people will love him for it….. GO FOR IT SHANE

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