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Tell the truth

Written By: - Date published: 10:26 pm, January 25th, 2013 - 254 comments
Categories: david shearer, labour, making shit up - Tags:

Zetetic’s telling porkies. His talk of a rift in the Labour Party is crap. He hasn’t got a clue about  what went on the Party conference – the idea that there should be a membership-wide vote on the leadership was voted down at the conference in November by a large majority of the 600-700 delegates present.

Here’s the wording of the amendment (rule 297A (d) is the caucus + members + affiliate vote):

(e) “The endorsement process in February 2013 will take place under new rule 297A (d) without the caucus trigger”.LOST

I have no idea whether or not Zetetic is or has been a member of the Labour Party, or whether he was at the conference. If he is and he was, he must have been out for a coffee when the issue of the membership-wide vote on the leadership was put to the conference. He’s got it totally wrong about what Labour members wanted.

I don’t think Zetetic and Eddie and all the other prophets of gloom on this site have a clue about what’s going on in the Labour Party – or the electorate for that matter.

I had a wonderful day at Ratana today, at the service for the Prophet’s birthday in the Temepara. David Shearer was there too. There was a shift in the air, and it wasn’t away from Labour. He’ll get 100% endorsement from the caucus too, I’ll bet.

254 comments on “Tell the truth”

  1. QoT 1

    Well this is a mature and well-reasoned response. And that’s coming from me.

    • lprent 1.1

      Yes, you are the master of the mature and well-reasoned response 😈

      However Mike is correct. Quite simply the caucus has to vote less than 60%+1 before a leadership vote is taken amongst the membership. Since the main purported (by others) contender has taken himself out of contention – I can’t see that happening (and for that matter never did). Of course there could be a surprise nomination – but I’m not holding my breath or my interest – there is a dearth of competent talent. I’ll remain a member, but consider myself free to help whomever I deem worthy.

      What this rule will be useful for is next time the leadership gets brought up so we don’t get quite such a competence issue – which I personally find so damn irritating. In the meantime, Jacinda still looks like she will grow into her job and deserves support from my electorate vote. The Green’s deserve some recognition for running a coherent parliamentary party.

      But I have previously already signalled my voting intentions, and as many know, I don’t change my mind all that often.

      • QoT 1.1.1

        Yes, I’m sure Mike is absolutely technically correct on the point of how the quoted amendment was voted on at conference.

        I also know that the wording and outcome of a single amendment has sweet fuck all to do with:

        – establishing Zetetic is a liar
        – establishing there is no rift in Labour
        – establishing that Zetetic and Eddie are unqualified to comment on the Labour Party, especially when by Mike’s own admission he has no fucking idea who Zet is.

        And as multiple people have pointed out, it’s laughable for anyone, especially someone who is involved in Shearer’s office, to act like the Feb vote will at this point be anything other than a charade.

        (I would also point out I’ve been to a lot of similar conferences, and I’ve seen comments along these lines regarding the Labour one: once you’re deep in the amendment process, it gets fucking confusing as to what’s specifically being voted on. Maybe a plain-English-for-remits remit needs to go through at some point.)

        • lprent 1.1.1.1

          It is too fast for that… Read what I live wrote during the conference and you’ll get a sense of how damn confusing it got..

          But I have gotten into the habit of reading Mike’s stuff (and constitutional amendments closely). It usually pays…. But I anticipate that I may have to monitor this posts comments. Mike has obviously been studying the inflammatory techniques.

            • the sprout 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Isn’t there some policy about direct attacks on Standard authors?

              • QoT

                I’m pretty fucking sure you’re on the fucking money with that one, sprout.

              • Jackal

                I find the idea that The Standard authors should somehow be exempt from criticism, interesting to say the least… Mainly because it’s my understanding that The Standard isn’t meant to be a mouthpiece for Labour and therefore all controversial ideas should be tested thoroughly. If that involves a bit of swearing, so what?

                That would seem to be a democratic way to run a blog, and without that democracy being displayed here (which in most cases it has been) how can the sites authors claim other institutions should change their systems to be even more democratic?

                The problem arises when arrogance doesn’t allow the truth to come out, whether by sheer stupidity or personal investment, and lies develop into misconceptions that are then allowed to fester into the recent veritable diatribe of unsubstantiated claims we’ve been seeing, especially within comments. The real unfortunate thing is that those who disagree with the status quo of disinformation are more oft than not brow beaten into silence… A dynamic I might add that has very little to do with traditional leftwing values.

                Without an open format within reason there could be a further degradation into the style of venom and propaganda we see on Whaleoil and Kiwibog… That degradation would seem to be a far worse result than having the odd post that’s wrong and which some right wing commentators obviously fornicate over to try and show a disjointed opposition to Nationals neoliberalism.

                The fact that the right wing is destroying New Zealand should be a huge unifying factor for the left, because if we fail to stop them through continued power plays and holding onto past resentments, then the left will just be squabbling over the ashes in Nationals wake. In fact we’re already three years too late to stop much of the damage John Key’s detrimental agenda is causing.

                Zetetic’s recent post was clearly incorrect, and its good to see his and Eddie’s misconceived claims highlighted. Perhaps in the future they might like to try harder to get things right, because in the end they’re doing their credibility, blogging in general and the left wing no favour’s at all.

                • QoT

                  sprout say: “direct attacks on Standard authors”

                  Jackal say: “The Standard authors should somehow be exempt from criticism”

                  Jackal comprehension fail? Or just derailing for funsies?

                  • Jackal

                    I’m embellishing on the argument QoT.

                    Although Sprout’s comment was directed at Jenny, the ‘attacks on Standard authors’ comment has a pretty wide range of meanings… There’s attacks from commentators here, attacks by other bloggers, attacks from fellow authors and attacks from the media and politicians.

                    Not to diminish its scope of influence, The Standard can really only hope to effect two of these things, and it’s my opinion that to overly moderate disputes between authors and to a lesser degree disputes between authors and commentators would be hypocritical in light of the claims that Labour needs to be more democratic.

                    In other words if you want to see more democracy, a good place to start is by changing the things that you control. If you cannot bring yourself to change, then don’t request it in others. But I guess that’s too many words for you to comprehend eh QoT?

                    • QoT

                      I’m making shit up QoT.

                      FIFY

                    • Jackal

                      At least you managed to respond to the first part of my comment QoT, and in such a succinct manner thus conforming to your own limiting rules… Well done!

                    • the sprout

                      The comment was in reference to mike smith’s post about those who dare challenge the ABC. Nothing to do with jenny.

                      Another comprehension fail jackal.

                    • Jackal

                      So the best response you can come up with the sprout to my 358 word comment is that it’s a comprehension fail? Pathetic!

                      Just to clarify, I was responding to this:

                      Isn’t there some policy about direct attacks on Standard authors?

                      Which was your response to Jenny’s comment here.

                      If there was any misconception as to who your comment was addressed to it was a result of your own mistake.

                      You then say:

                      The comment was in reference to mike smith’s post about those who dare challenge the ABC. Nothing to do with jenny.

                      Which would seem to be a comprehension fail so to speak on your part being that you were replying to Jenny. Also, where exactly is Mike talking about ‘those who dare challenge the ABC’?

                      If an author correcting the misconception of another author is not allowed under The Standards rules, could you please link to this rule the sprout? Being that you have raised the topic, could you also justify why such a rule should be in place, if it exists at all?

                      What this shows is that some The Standard authors are not above bending the truth in order to promote their own beliefs. I find myself agreeing with previous criticism that some left wing bloggers are no different to right wing bloggers, and such a realisation is somewhat saddening.

                • Colonial Viper

                  That would seem to be a democratic way to run a blog, and without that democracy being displayed here (which in most cases it has been) how can the sites authors claim other institutions should change their systems to be even more democratic?

                  More disingenuous reasoning from the Jackal.

                  Where did you read in the site’s policies that The Standard was a democratically run organisation?

                  Why are you uncomfortable with individuals calling for Labour to behave more democratically?

                  • QoT

                    Because apparently you can’t argue for more (x) in something unless everything you yourself run is completely full of (x).

                    Ergo I cannot whinge about the lack of Ross Taylor in the Black Caps because I myself have not hired Ross Taylor as a test captain.

                    • Jackal

                      Last time I checked QoT wasn’t The Jackal.

                      You might want to replace x with democracy, which is what we’re actually discussing here. Who the fuck is Ross Taylor?

                      Colonial Viper

                      More disingenuous reasoning from the Jackal.

                      Why is it disingenuous to expect those who are requesting more democracy to be democratic themselves? You’re right to respond btw, because the comment is directed at you just as much as The Standard’s admin.

                      Where did you read in the site’s policies that The Standard was a democratically run organisation?

                      That’s my observation… Are you arguing that The Standard is not democratic? Where exactly have you read that in the sites policy?

                      Why are you uncomfortable with individuals calling for Labour to behave more democratically?

                      Who said I was uncomfortable with people calling for Labour to behave more democratically? If that was all you and others were doing, there would be no problem at all.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      So according to you, posters on The Standard should not call for more democracy in the NZLP, unless they also call for more democracy on The Standard?

                      You’re such a laugh. Dick head.

                      That’s my observation… Are you arguing that The Standard is not democratic? Where exactly have you read that in the sites policy?

                      Perfection of beltway smart-arseness. Good luck mate.

                    • Jackal

                      You’re such a classic example of the anti-democratic movement within the leftwing Coronial Wiper, being that you’ve no actual argument apart from personal insults designed to close down debate from those you don’t agree with.

                      It’s a bit pathetic really, especially because you’re so off the mark.

                      Just to clarify, you’ve not established that Labour needs further democratization… You’ve also confirmed on numerous occasions that you’re entirely averse to being more democratic yourself. That’s more commonly known as hypocrisy Coronial Wiper. Good luck sorting your issues out.

              • … also please excuse me if I’m wrong but telling/suggesting to the site that the site should change/adjust to the idea/ideals of the suggester is also an offense, or so I believe

                • Jackal

                  I wasn’t just advocating for a more democratic The Standard marty mars, I was advocating for the authors who have been found to have promoted falsehoods to not be censured. But I guess the subtlety got lost on you somewhere along the line.

                  Telling/suggesting to the site that the site should change/adjust to the idea/ideals of the suggester is also an offense.

                  Could you also link to this rule the sprout?

    • Colonial Viper 1.2

      Yep. I’d say this was all very fair, considered and even: except for all the fucking BLOOD spilled on the carpet after the votes were taken, including MINE.

    • David H 1.3

      What have you done with the Queen?? Who is this ?? lol Yes very mature.

  2. “He’ll get 100% endorsement from the caucus too, I’ll bet.”

    No doubt, look what happens when you stray off script.
    It would be certain Siberia until placed number 48 on the party list for 2014.
    Even politicians gotta eat.

    “all the other prophets of gloom on this site have a clue about what’s going on in the Labour Party – or the electorate for that matter.”

    At 31% in the polls, with a truly poor government sitting pretty, and no opposition hits of any note, at all, in four years… Are you sure you’re qualified enough to give that statement?

    • Tiresias 2.1

      “I don’t think Zetetic and Eddie and all the other prophets of gloom on this site have a clue about what’s going on in the Labour Party – or the electorate for that matter.”

      As Tiresias was a prophet – of gloom when that was how he saw it – I guess I’m included in that statement.

      I’m not a member of the Labour Party. I’ve no idea what goes on in Labour Party inner sanctums where with the blinds firmly drawn on the real world and the door shut tight against outsiders polite power-struggles rage, compromises are beaten out, cunning plans are hatched and pithy statements are tried out on each other. However I suspect things can get as unreal there as they did in Hitler’s Berlin bunker in spring of 1945 as they can easily do in any closed gathering of the like-minded, especially in bad times.

      I don’t have a crystal ball that can tell me what nearly 3.5 million individuals are thinking now, let alone what they’ll be thinking next year. I judge what’s going on in the Labour Party by what I see and hear in the media, what I get from my friends and neighbours and from sites like The Standard. And by that very unscientific, unprivileged viewpoint I get the sense that although Mike Smith might be right that there’s no rift in the Labour Party there are some very dangerous fault-lines under stress. Far more tellingly, tho’, – and I don’t know whether Mike Smith was being disengenious, gung-ho or genuinely is not aware of this – there are yawning rifts between “The Labour Party” and people such as myself who want to be Labour Party supporters and should be Labour Party supporters as opposed to anything else on offer but who look at the current caucus and ….. look somewhere else because they see no passion, no bite, no belief, no vision.

      Frankly I don’t give a damn about what’s going on within the Labour Party. That’s a Labour Party matter. I judge the Labour Party, especially when it comes to election time, by what comes out of the Labour Party and at the moment what is coming out of the Labour Party – or, rather, what isn’t coming out of the Labour Party – I suspect would have made any left-wing Tiresias very gloomy about the future.

  3. Blue 3

    He’ll get 100% endorsement from the caucus too, I’ll bet.

    Yeah, I’ll bet. Not hard when you’ve bullied every member of your caucus into endorsing you months before the vote and kneecapped your only rival.

    Seems David Shearer likes the taste of 100% faked loyalty. Too bad he can’t make the membership shut up, eh?

  4. kousei 4

    Not sure about the value of a collective smear against so called prophets of doom. The question is more what is not happening in the Labour party. Seems as though there are many participants on this site that would vote for Labour irrespective of being members if they thought that certain values were being publicly represented by The Party. Clearly they are not.

    • lprent 4.1

      Ha! The site is for people to argue.. Calling is a “smear” is merely a boring debating tactic.

      Just offhand. Why do you think it is a “smear” when the whole point of this site is to allow people on the left to argue? That requires that they hold different opinions and argue for them.

      You really deserve a bollocking for using such an inane argument.

      • kousei 4.1.1

        What’s not smeary about calling someone a liar. Still wondering about the obscuration of the values the Labour party actually stands for? That strikes me as being more dishonest.

      • mikey77 4.1.2

        As long as we agree with iprent we are welcome.

        Go JOHN KEY

        [lprent: I don’t expect to agree with anyone. However I and the other moderators do expect people to behave in accordance with the stated policies of the site. After all it is OUR site.

        If you disagree with that, then I can see why you’d have a problem. ]

  5. woodpecker 5

    Wow, from a guy who would like this all to go away and everyone to shut the fuck up. you shure can stir it up Smithy

    • David H 5.1

      It seems that Shearer keeps sending Mr Smith in to tell us all off. What does he think he’s up to trying to stifle free speech?? Hey Mikey as I said last time. Go back and tell em were NOT listening to you. We are sick of being ignored. And all you are doing is alienating more and more potential voters. So go and READ some of the comments here, and tell em they are going to lose votes like water from a leaky bucket. And don’t forget the 800 000voters that did not even bother to vote last time the way you lot are carrying on that number could increase.

      • Jackal 5.1.1

        There’s a very big difference between correcting other people’s mistakes and trying to stifle free speech David H… Please try not to rant!

        • geoff 5.1.1.1

          So in your request for David H to not rant, were you attempting to stifle his free speech or just correcting his ‘mistake’?

          • Jackal 5.1.1.1.1

            Actually the first part of David H’s comment is not really a rant… It’s just wrong! The second part where he/she claims to be speaking for everybody and tries to ascribe the support Labour received at the last election or might receive in the future to Mike’s post above is particularly insane! Also assuming that Mike hasn’t read the comments on The Standard and ordering Mike to do things all has little basis in reality, and is therefore clearly a rant. Whatever effect that has on David H’s writing is up to them… Happy now geoff?

            • geoff 5.1.1.1.1.1

              David H started with “It seems that Shearer keeps sending Mr Smith in to tell us all off.”. Notice he uses the word “seems”, so although he is cognizant of the fact that he cannot factually state that this is the case he believes it to be a reasonable possibility. And I can say, from following this little saga for months myself, that that isn’t a particularly extreme leap to make. I can see how someone might come to that conclusion given Mike Smith’s position in the party flavour of the posts we have seen.

              I also don’t think he claims to be “speaking for everybody”. When he uses the word we I assume he means people on the standard who are anti-shearer and the ABCer’s. From my estimation there seem to be good number of us!

              To me, David H’s comment was heartfelt, reasonable and seems (there’s that word again, look it up) to be grounded in a frustration that I myself can relate to.

              Hope that wasn’t too ranty for you, Jackal !!!!

              • David H

                Thank you Geoff.
                I will have to be a little clearer. And it may have looked like a rant, however it’s more a scream of frustration, that the party, that I have voted for since the 1970’s, has descended into a cess pit of self interest.

                I never meant to give the impression that I was in anyway speaking for anyone other than my self. And If I offended anyone then I apologise.

                And I also hope I am not the only one who has had a gutsful.

                Edit And the 800 00 NON voters well thats a no brainer at the moment can see them and more saying “Fuck it, why bother?”

                • geoff

                  Jackal’s just pro-Shearer. Nothing wrong with your initial post, the best he can come up with is a vague accusation of ‘ranting’. Most of the other stuff he’s blethering on about is due to his poor comprehension which is ironic because he’s falsely accused me of just that in his comment below.

                  • Jackal

                    There’s lot’s wrong with David H’s initial post geoff… Where exactly does Mike try to stifle free speech for starters?

                    You’re correct however that I’m pro Shearer, and unlike Coronial Wipers claims that I believe in Shearer’s abilities because Labour is going to provide me with a cushy number, (deluded much CV?) my belief that Shearer has what it takes to be a great Prime Minister is founded in reality, a reality that unlike the argument against him is verifiable with facts.

                    • geoff

                      There’s lot’s wrong with David H’s initial post geoff… Where exactly does Mike try to stifle free speech for starters?

                      He’s referring to Shearer and Labour leadership attempting to squash criticism of them! Clair Curran tried to directly target individuals!

                      my belief that Shearer has what it takes to be a great Prime Minister is founded in reality, a reality that unlike the argument against him is verifiable with facts

                      Huh?! What facts?!
                      I’m sick of wasting my time having to explain everything to you, it’s like trying to teach calculus to a cow.

                    • Jackal

                      geoff

                      He’s referring to Shearer and Labour leadership attempting to squash criticism of them! Clair Curran tried to directly target individuals!

                      Where exactly does Mike Smith reference any of those things in his post dickhead? I’m talking about what David H accused him of doing, and there’s absolutely nothing in Mike’s post that can be misconstrued as trying to stop free speech.

                      Huh?! What facts?!

                      Well here’s some facts for you that I bet you’ll try to ignore. Ignorance is bliss I suppose.

                      I’m sick of wasting my time having to explain everything to you, it’s like trying to teach calculus to a cow.

                      For your analogy to be correct, you would have to be another cow with mad cows disease geoff, because your argument looks a little unhinged to say the least.

              • Jackal

                geoff

                Hope that wasn’t too ranty for you, Jackal !!!!

                Not at all… However it was condescending. I don’t need to look up the word seems and was in fact responding to geoff’s claim that Mike was trying to stifle free speech. The hint was when I wrote:

                There’s a very big difference between correcting other people’s mistakes and trying to stifle free speech David H.

                So there’s a bit of a comprehension fail on your part there geoff.

                David H writes:

                I never meant to give the impression that I was in anyway speaking for anyone other than my self.

                …after writing:

                Hey Mikey as I said last time. Go back and tell em were NOT listening to you. We are sick of being ignored.

                Then David H tries to blame the low voter turnout in 2011 entirely on Labour. These are all complete comprehension failures, being that voter apathy is a complex and difficult thing to fix and cannot be attributed to how Shearer has performed… You do realize there hasn’t been an election yet with Shearer as Labour leader and it’s National who is ensuring people are marginalized by increasing poverty in order to lower voter turnout.

                Labour is not a cesspit of self-interest… Believing so just shows that you’re far removed from reality. It concerns me that there are such delusions being openly promoted on what is purported to be a left wing blog with very little challenge. David H will certainly not be able to back up such a claim with facts.

                • geoff

                  Hi Jackal,

                  So there’s a bit of a comprehension fail on your part there geoff.

                  I don’t think so, I knew exactly what you meant when you said…
                  “There’s a very big difference between correcting other people’s mistakes and trying to stifle free speech David H”

                  My initial response was trying to point out the irony that you followed that sentence with…”Please try not to rant!”

                  • Jackal

                    Why is it ironic that I requested David H not to rant? It’s a criticism that he/she has even accepted to a degree:

                    And it may have looked like a rant…

                    Why argue a moot point geoff?

                    Writing:

                    There’s a very big difference between correcting other people’s mistakes and trying to stifle free speech David H.

                    Is clearly not ranting geoff… So yes! A complete comprehension failure on your part I’m afraid. Try not to do that eh!

  6. IrishBill 6

    I’d caution you against describing authors as liars, Mike. You’ve never been abused by other authors here, regardless of political differences, and it would behoove you to show a similar degree of respect in return.

    • lprent 6.1

      Nah – reread it.. (I did). He is quite specific about what he thought the “porkie” was.

      Now I have no idea if Zet said that (and I don’t think that he did from recollection). But Mike is correct in what the rule is.

      Until the caucus doesn’t get its shit together, the vote isn’t going out to the membership.

      Interesting dynamic isn’t it….

      • IrishBill 6.1.1

        Sorry Lynn, but I don’t think the tone’s appropriate. I would never, for example, write a response post to Mike that stated “I don’t think Mike has a clue about what’s going on in the Labour Party – or the electorate for that matter.” What I would do is say “I disagree with Mike and this is why”.

        I think Mike’s done his argument a disservice and I’ll sort it out with him offline but my comment stands.

      • lightly 6.1.2

        But there’s nothing in Zet’s last post that implies a February vote will happen without the caucus giving its 40%. That’s the crazy thing.

        And the tone. The politics of saying what he wants to say in the way he says it is weird.

        a) over 5 years, my experience as a reader has been that authors have always sought to engage respectfully even when they disagree, so it’s destructive of the culture and brand
        b) it’s not going to go down well with the readers and that’s not going to reflect well on his pay master.

        Mike can’t seriously think yelling and hurling abuse at anyone who raises questions about Shearer’s lack of performance and his unwillingness to put his leadership to the membership will quell the membership’s disquiet.

        Mike’s an old player, he must know that kind of post is counter-productive.

        And, actually, it displays a lack of power. Because if Shearer’s office had a real method to silence dissent in the Left, they wouldn’t be trying to do it this way.

        • geoff 6.1.2.1

          The ABCers must be exceedingly fucked off that there is this popular, influential, public forum with so many comments that, basically, tear apart every single thing they do on a daily basis.
          It’s quite an uplifting thought! ;P
          Perhaps this cheesy quote applies:
          First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

        • Colonial Weka 6.1.2.2

          “But there’s nothing in Zet’s last post that implies a February vote will happen without the caucus giving its 40%. That’s the crazy thing.”

          I thought that too, but on rereading both posts I think Mike is right (although I disagree with him).

          Here’s what Zet said

          “Increasingly, people are coming to the view that the only way to heal this rift and unify the party is for caucus to take the leadership issue out to the membership this February so we can put it to bed once and for all. That’s what the conference was about. We wanted to make sure we were never ignored again. Indeed, the specific vote to hold a special caucus vote using the 40% trigger this February was designed to ensure the membership finally got a say on the current leadership – either to endorse David Shearer properly or to put in place an alternative who had a real mandate.”

          Zet is basically saying that the membership should have the say on who is leader. Mike is pointing out that the membership voted on the rules changing to give the membership ultimate voting power, and they voted against that. ie they voted to allow caucus to be the gate keepers rather than giving full power to members.

          • lightly 6.1.2.2.1

            no, that quote in fact shows that Zet knows the caucus vote triggers the wider race: “the specific vote to hold a special caucus vote using the 40% trigger this February was designed to ensure the membership finally got a say on the current leadership”

            Thinking about it, maybe thar’s Mike’s strategy – the target isn’t us or the authors, it’s wavering Labour MPs who are coming up to a secret ballot. Unlike the open vote they forced last year, this time the Old Guard can’t be sure that something isn’t disquiet under their noses that will see a surprise vote against Shearer. So they’re trying to scare waverers into line.

            • blue leopard 6.1.2.2.1.1

              @ lightly

              re the target. That sounds horribly feasible to me.

            • Bright Red 6.1.2.2.1.2

              alternatively, it’s about Mike having to show his bosses that he’s ‘doing something’ about the blogs.

              • Jackal

                Or he simply has an opinion and has corrected Zetetic’s misconception… Doing zumething about ze blogz seems as far removed from Mike’s post as anything else you could make up.

          • blue leopard 6.1.2.2.2

            It reads: “for caucus to take the leadership out to the membership”

            Not “for membership to decide the leadership without caucus”

            It asks Mr Shearer to “give members a say by putting his leadership up for endorsement”
            not “that members are going to get a say regardless of what Mr Shearer (or caucus) vote”

            Zet appears to be saying it would be good if membership had a say, not that they have a constitutional right to.

            I agree with IrishBill here. Not good form Mike.

            • Colonial Weka 6.1.2.2.2.1

              “Zet appears to be saying it would be good if membership had a say, not that they have a constitutional right to.”

              Yes, but Mike is pointing out that the membership voted AGAINST giving the membership such powers. Why was that?

              I don’t agree with Mike that Zet was lying, I’m just saying that Mike does technically have a point.

              • Bill

                Yes, but Mike is pointing out that the membership voted AGAINST giving the membership such powers. Why was that?

                Because they were/are, by and large, reasonable people who had no reason to suspect and therefore didn't foresee the nasty bullshit machinations and dynamics that were about to unleashed by a power hungry and desperate clique within caucus?

                In other words, they didn't think to prepare for the worst while hoping for the best.

              • @Colonial Weka,

                Ah, I see what you mean; that if they voted it out in November, then why would/should they want it in February.

                Mike doesn’t however argue this point, he calls Zet a liar, like he is misleading his readers into believing there isn’t a caucus trigger to be had. This is simply not how I read Zet’s post at all, and I do not believe that is what he was saying.

                The membership did vote to give members the power to endorse the leader when there was a lower caucus trigger.

                There has been a lot of water under the bridge since November.

                Hence Zetetic writes asking caucus to give membership that opportunity in Feb.

                • Colonial Weka

                  I’m curious now as to why the membership voted as it did in November. But thinking about it, it was the delegates that voted not the wider membership yeah?

                  • hope someone answers you on that one, would be interesting to know

                  • Te Reo Putake

                    Well, yeah, CW, it was the delegates to the conference that voted. And they voted according to how their branch, LEC or affiliate’s executive told them to vote. That’s representative democracy.

                    • billbrowne

                      Yeah, but the branches, LECs and affiliates probably could not have foreseen the perfect storm that allowed Shearer et al to manufacture a excuse to nobble DC before he had the chance to bring together a measured and planned tip at the leadership in February.

                      Had that been known, I suspect a lot less trust would have been given to caucus and a lot more push would have been made for 297A (e) to be voted for by delegates

                    • QoT

                      You mean they took the time to go back to their branches, LECs, and executives for every single amendment to every single remit? Wait, that’s not how any representative/conference situation happens anywhere because it would take forever.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Desperate, QoT. The readers know how conferences work.

                    • Colonial Weka

                      Actually I wasn’t sure how much the members at the LEC level would know ahead of time. And how the delegate representation works eg how much do delegates consult with members, or once they’re elected, they just get on with it?

                    • QoT

                      Do they, TRP? Then why would you make a statement like

                      they voted according to how their branch, LEC or affiliate’s executive told them to vote

                      … when we’re clearly talking about an amendment to a remit which would not have been part of the circulated conference papers?

                      If “the readers” know how conferences work it’s pretty clear you don’t.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Duh! When amendments come up, the delegates are expected to use their best judgement in line with the wishes of the body they are representing and vote accordingly.

                    • QoT

                      [repost, clearly hit the wrong “comment” button]

                      Let’s recap.

                      C. Weka: “thinking about it, it was the delegates that voted not the wider membership yeah?”

                      TRP: “it was the delegates to the conference that voted. And they voted according to how their branch, LEC or affiliate’s executive told them to vote.”

                      QoT: [explains that since this was an amendment, delegates could not have had specific instructions from their base regarding this vote]

                      TRP: “Duh! … the delegates are expected to use their best judgement”

                      So … the delegates didn’t vote “according to how their branch [etc] told them to”, they voted according to “their best judgement.”

                      Which was the whole point I was making.

                      But it’s cool, TRP. Next time you want to play the “make a bullshit statement and then three comments later pretend you said something else” game just give me a heads-up so I can play along, k?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      You didn’t make a point, you constructed a strawman.

                    • The Fan Club

                      Actually QoT these amendments were massively flagged, months ahead of Conference.

                      (See the various discussion documents put out by NZ Council.) So it’s almost certainly the case that while technically yeah the remits were only put out on the Friday, most LECs/branches had discussed the trigger mechanism. Certainly there was enough forewarning that any body that wished to bind delegates had ample opportunity to.

                      [In fact, noticeably, the shift to a 40% trigger was only carried on the union block vote. The rank and file membership of the Labour Party didn’t vote for it.]

                    • QoT

                      Then I stand corrected, TFC. Still, looks like TRP didn’t know that either given zie settled for just pretending to have said something different.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      You’re boring me now, Queen O’T’s. Off to the pub ….

                    • QoT

                      I’m pretty sure the good ol’ “making a comment to say you’ve got better things to do than comment” thing is generally agreed on as an admission of defeat on these here internets.

                    • For what its worth QoT, I thought your recap was pretty darn accurate.
                      Some people appear to think that if they say it isn’t so, makes it that way.
                      Not true in my book
                      Keep up the good work

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Queeny, Queeeny, Queeny! If we keep squabbling like this in public, people will think we’re married.

      • Colonial Weka 6.1.3

        It would help if someone from the Labour party wrote out what the actual process and rules are. And yes, I’ve read most of the posts and many of the comments on this since the conference, and I still don’t have a clear idea of how this should work.

        For instance, Lynn you seem to be saying that the only way there will be a vote against Shearer is if there is a challenge to his leadership. Is that in the new rules? Or do you mean that in the absence of a challenge people will by default vote confidence in Shearer? What is the actual wording that will be voted on?

        Maybe these things have been made explicit to the membership. All I can say is that looking from the outside, a couple of months on from teh conference, it looks like either Labour can’t organise itself, or for some reason it doesn’t want to.

        • IrishBill 6.1.3.1

          You shouldn’t be on the outside – it’s easy enough to join: http://www.labour.org.nz/join

          The process is there’s a secret ballot vote in the caucus and if 40% or more vote no-confidence in the leader then it goes out to a vote in the wider party.

          So in February there will be a vote in caucus and if 40% or more of MPs vote no confidence then Shearer would have to enter and win a campaign against any MP that stood against him in order to maintain his leadership.

          Alternatively he might decide not to stand and the wider vote would be for one of the mps that did. Or he might be the only one that stood (which would just be silly).

          Ultimately it’s the caucus’ choice on whether the members should open the vote. That said Shearer could instruct his caucus to facilitate this vote (which would be daring and stupid).

          If the leader steps down then the next leader is chosen by a party-wide vote.

          The votes are generally scheduled for the first caucus after the election. A standard vote of no confidence outside of the schedule is still (I believe) 50% +1 of caucus.

          • Bill 6.1.3.1.1

            Might sound like splitting hairs. But would it not be more accurate to say that the leader must secure 60%+1 vote of confidence to prevent a wider party vote? Because that’s completely different to 40% voting ‘no confidence’ once the possibility of abstentions are allowed for.

            • Colonial Weka 6.1.3.1.1.1

              I’m still confused on that too. What exactly are caucus voting on?

              • McFlock

                Confidence in Shearer as leader.

                If 40% say “no”, there’s a full party election where anyone in caucus can throw their hat in the ring.

              • Bill

                To the best of my knowledge they are voting on whether they have confidence in the leader of the Labour Party.

          • Colonial Weka 6.1.3.1.2

            Thanks Irish, that’s clearer. So technically, caucus could vote against Shearer without there being any overt contenders, but this is unlikely? Or can we assume that there are contenders even if they don’t put their hands up before the caucus vote?

            btw, I’m a GP member, so can’t join another party. But to be honest, I’d join Mana before I’d even consider joining Labour, because of the policy issues, and because of the bullshit within the organisation. I’m glad that there are still good people within Labour, and I really hope that you are able to sort things out, for all our sakes.

          • David H 6.1.3.1.3

            “You shouldn’t be on the outside – it’s easy enough to join: http://www.labour.org.nz/join

            At the moment it just seems a waste of what little money i have. Sorry.

        • Te Reo Putake 6.1.3.2

          Your second para is on the money, CW. No obvious challenger, no point voting no confidence. Mind you, John A Lee probably would have anyway, given the chance, and whoever the leader was.

          • Colonial Weka 6.1.3.2.1

            So if Labour had a really crap leader, the MPs should vote confidence in said really crap leader, if everyone else was too scared to put their hand up before the vote?

            Let’s not pretend that we’re talking about a process that has integrity, openness and honesty, nor the best intentions for the party. I’m assuming there will be much back room discussion and politicking going on. Am I wrong?

          • Bill 6.1.3.2.2

            But even in the case of no obvious challenger, it could still make sense to not give a vote of confidence if you have no confidence ie, abstain.

            edit. And if caucus or whoever had wanted to avoid that scenario they should have said it was down to 60%+1 of those voting

            • Te Reo Putake 6.1.3.2.2.1

              Most of caucus didn’t want the 60% plus one, Bill. Maybe in the future, a leader will lose the confidence of a significant minority of his caucus. The tail may wag the dog and a leadership spill will ensue. But that’s not going to happen now. Which is the real point.

              • Bill

                I don’t know if that’s correct or not and it’s entirely beside the point. The membership (plus caucus and the affiliates) did want the 60%+1. And caucus ought to be beholden to a wider constituency (ie, the party) and not be some self preserving echelon beyond the party’s reach.

                It would be far more democratic to demand 80%+1 or somesuch so that potential schisms are nipped in the bud. 60%+1 can be gamed far too easily. Given the size of caucus a simple promise of promotion or threat of demotion can keep enough mps in line. And that would be (I suspect) an unworkable tactic with a 20% spill.

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Better to go to 100%, Bill. Works great in some countries. You seem to be ignoring that the conference move to bring caucus under partial and provisional democratic control. The biggest change in a century. Maybe it’s not enough, but its a dramatic improvement. A moaning minority in caucus should not be allowed to hijack the party and we do not need a leadership battle every few months.

                  Frankly, most party members don’t much care. As I’ve said elsewhere, they’re Ok with Shearer, at least for the time being. When the time comes to roll Key, the majority of the members will stand tall.

                  • Jesus Wept

                    How do you know they don’t care. Have you met the new ones, wonder why the fuck they joined? You’re the only non-troll writer on this site I find more disingenuous than the old fella writing this post.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Disingenuous? I’ve been pointing out the blindingly obvious for months now. That’s the opposite of disingenuous. There aren’t mass resignations, nobody’s even starting a petition or a fb page and a lot of the wishful thinking seems to be here on the TS from people who aren’t even labour voters, let alone members. Which is Mike’s point about Zet, I guess.

                    • billbrowne

                      Shit – I didn’t know I had to join Facespy to express my dissatisfaction in the Labour leadership – didn’t know that had more cred’ than TS.

                      And, I don’t know about others, but I renewed my membership in the hope that I would get a chance to vote on the leadership in February – wish I hadn’t now.

                      At this point – after voting Labour every election since I was allowed to (’81) I will be joining the legions of other voters and staying home on the day.

                    • rosy

                      Same billbrowne. As a Labour voter, I joined the party after the conference because of the remits that allowed the membership a greater say in who represents them.

                      In the long term it will be more democratic, so I’ll stay – for now. That’s because I do care about what is going on. There’s no point in reading that as approval for the current leadership tactics.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      That’s fine Bill, John Key is relying on you to do exactly that.

                      But don’t blame me, I just pointed out that the majority of members don’t seem to be bothered about it, giving a couple of examples of where discontent might be found if it actually existed. My position is that most members seem content to see how Shearer pans out. The housing policy and the conference speech will have given members who weren’t at conference, but saw the news, some heart, I imagine. Some reason to believe Shearer will be the next PM.

                      And we shouldn’t forget that there are many members who positively support Shearer. The DC camp seem to think the entire membership is behind their man. It ain’t so.

                    • Colonial Weka

                      “I will be joining the legions of other voters and staying home on the day.”

                      And let NACT have another term? I appreciate your anger at Labour, but please don’t let that disenfranchise yourself.

                    • Colonial Weka

                      “The DC camp seem to think the entire membership is behind their man.”

                      That’s not what I am seeing on ts.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I was once in the “DC camp” (whatever that was). But this week DC decamped and bailed. I do still think that Labour would hugely benefit in profile and PR from a Leadership confirmation going out to the members in Feb. A new democratic Labour responsive and in touch with an empowered membership base.

                      However I reckon TRP is, and regrettably was, right. It’s simply locked down and won’t be allowed to happen.

                    • geoff

                      You’re the only non-troll writer on this site I find more disingenuous than the old fella writing this post.

                      There’s that wurd again!

                  • billbrowne

                    Woah, back up the bus a bit…

                    I thought the confidence vote could only take place in February of a particular year before or after an election (not sure which).

                    How does this equate to your statement:

                    “A moaning minority in caucus should not be allowed to hijack the party and we do not need a leadership battle every few months”

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      I meant informal campaigns like this, not the formal process, Bill. ie I’m not keen on wannabe leaders starting destabalisation efforts as soon as they think they have enough minority support to undermine the incumbent.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I thought the confidence vote could only take place in February of a particular year before or after an election (not sure which).

                      Under the old constitution, there was a regular caucus leadership confidence vote scheduled for the mid point (Feb) of every electoral tri-annum.

                      With the constitutional amendments at Conference last year, the Feb 2013 mid tri-annum vote was kept (with the new 60%+1 rule applying), but it will be the very last one.

                      After Feb 2013 the regular leadership confidence vote requiring 60%+1 will not be held at the mid point of the tri-annum but will instead occur within 3 months of every General Election held.

                      HOWEVER there is also provision for leadership confidence vote to occur at any other time, but in those votes the Leader requires a lower, easier threshold of 50%+1 to maintain confidence.

                  • Bill

                    A (…) minority in caucus should not be allowed to hijack the party and we do not need a leadership battle every few months.

                    I agree 100% with that TRP (be it a moaning or conniving or whatever minority). But if you sit and think about it, the level at which the confidence vote is set determines the likelihood of minority rule insofar as the higher it is, the more leeway there is for a dominant minority to game the entire caucus.

                    If it’s set low (at say 20% for arguments sake) then a few things become possible that aren’t when the vote is set high. For one, a signal can be sent by a sizable minority that all is not well and that certain matters should maybe be addressed – (nipping potential schisms in the bud). A 20% minority are obviously not going to be able to mount a leadership challenge, but when 1 in 5 of your body is disgruntled, then there’s a fair chance that something is going wrong. Given that they can’t realistically challenge, they could still nevertheless send a signal with a 19% vote and effectively give the leadership a ‘heads-up’ and thus preserve unity. (For arguments sake we might say that 10% or so of non-confidence is natural noise in any org).

                    And because there is no immediate challenge to the leadership per se, there is no need to ‘play’ caucus members with threats and promises.

                    In other words, with a low threshhold, the meaning of non-confidence has the potential to be far more subtle and positive than the simple challenge/non-challenge scenario of a 60% confidence vote. Can you not see that requiring a 60/40 situation means that things get buried and ignored until the crisis of a more or less 50/50 split has occurred and that even then, the field is wide open for manipulation (through promises of promotion/demotion) by whichever side of the split holds the reigns within caucus?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Yeah, nicely put Bill. I can see your point a bit more clearly this morning. Sorry I didn’t twig to it last night. However, as most caucus splits are personality based, not policy based, the disgruntled minority problem remains. Any chancer with a few mates in caucus will fancy his or her chances.

                      For me, I think the LP missed a trick with this caucus focussed construction. I’d much prefer the members and affiliates had a trigger option, too. If we’d had that in the eighties, NZ’s political, social and economic history would be very, very different.

                    • Bill

                      Dunno where this comment will embed, but if a higher % member trigger was to sit alongside a low % caucus trigger, then any remaining opportunities for a minority portion of caucus to attempt gaming their way to power would probably be eliminated.

                      As for affiliate participation in any trigger? Well, that’s a hard one given the less than desirable democratic structures they operate by. And I suspect enough checks and balances would exist with the two triggers sitting with caucus and the membership.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      I agree about the affiliates, Bill (though I think you’re wrong to slag off the workers that sit on their executive boards and determine policy – they do great work in my experience).

                      When I first wrote the “I’d much prefer …” sentence, I only said the members, then rewrote it to add the affiliates, because it seemed unnatural to leave them out when they are part of the voting process.

                      Really not sure what an affiliates trigger would look like. Maybe nothing less than a unanimous vote of no confidence from all affiliates?

                    • Bill

                      Not intending to ‘slag off workers that sit on executive boards’ or whatever. But the fact is that unions are necessarily less democratic organisations than they might be because of the nature of the environment they operate within. (But that’s a different discussion)

                      Can’t see how unions can participate in a confidence vote. If it was to be democratic they’d have to seek the opinion of their members which would give some people two votes and also involve people who are members of other political parties.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    A moaning minority in caucus should not be allowed to hijack the party and we do not need a leadership battle every few months.

                    Yeah see. This is where you kinda miss the whole point IMHO.

                    A 41% minority aint no disgruntled clique of trouble makers for starters. They’re within 5 votes at most of being at outright majority. It’s a ‘significant split in caucus’ at the very least.

                    Secondly, they won’t be ‘hijacking’ the party, they will be putting the party’s wishes to the test.

                    The fear shown by the Shearer group of that party test is closer to a ‘hijacking’ of the party if you actually think about it.

                • McFlock

                  Given the size of caucus a simple promise of promotion or threat of demotion can keep enough mps in line. And that would be (I suspect) an unworkable tactic with a 20% spill.

                  not with a secret ballot. And promising promotion to one guarantees demotion to another.

                  • Bill

                    not with a secret ballot

                    Well yeah but, how ‘secret’ is the secret ballot in reality? When things have progressed to the point that a challenge is seen as the only way forward (a 60/40 split), then everybody within caucus has a fair idea of where everyone else stands thanks to the simple necessity to ‘play the numbers’ and garner support.
                    And so the secret ballot becomes a more or less open secret nicety.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    And promising promotion to one guarantees demotion to another.

                    Not necessarily. You’d be surprised (or not) at how many “Minister outside of Cabinet” positions can be dreamt up…

  7. Saarbo 7

    “I don’t think Zetetic and Eddie and all the other prophets of gloom on this site have a clue about what’s going on in the Labour Party”

    I am a member of the Labour Party and I haven’t got a clue whats going on in the Labour Party either Mike. But I’m not sure that is completely my (our) fault.

  8. deemac 8

    all these people who “know” what’s happening in the Labour Party, when actually they clearly have no idea, remind me of kremlinologists back in the day. I sometimes think the far left thrives on wishful thinking – if they say something (eg “certain values were being publicly represented by The Party. Clearly they are not.”) it somehow becomes fact when you really need to present evidence if you want to make an argument.

    • kousei 8.1

      Ah yes wishful thinking. If only a party left, centre, right or any variation you like would get serious about improving our land use (I don’t mean irrigation, dairy and planting ryegrass and radiata ), if only they would denouce crony capitalism, and rid us of that scourge, if only they had detailed strategic agricultural, transport, energy, and housing policies that were aimed at a long term benefit for us all not just a few. If only we could remember the incredible contribution that public service has made to this country. If only all New Zealanders would see that if you keep squeezing those with the least then we should not be surprised at the crime, violence, illness, and despair occuring. There is not doubt that many of Labour’s policies are different from Nationals. However I would argue that they need to be a whole lot more different, radically different perhaps and that doesn’t mean leftish it means that we ought to be trying to realise the best for our people and our land. Call it wishful thinking if you like.

  9. Bill 9

    His talk of a rift in the Labour Party is crap

    Uh-huh. So there’s no disconnect between caucus and membership as per numerous comments/posts from various party members on this site? And, of course, no ABC club/clique or whatever because such a thing could only exist in a divided entity that would not, of course, ever have to sanction any perceived challenge because, well…it’d be united.

    Hmm. If I was to be kind and understate I might say the elements of doubt traipsing across my mind on your claim are wearing tackety boot and making one hell of a racket. But it’s not doubt. It’s just the incapability of obvious and basic ‘right in front of my face’ observations to square with these ludicrous and disingenuous claims of a harmonious Labour Party that seem to rely on a tardis (as noted by CV) to seperate and reverse cause and effect. .

  10. geoff 10

    Wow what a post!

    Bye bye Labour, I’m heading for Greener pastures.

    • Wendigo Jane 10.1

      Sigh. Think I might, too… But I just got back from Greener pastures! I’m getting whiplash.

  11. Bright Red 11

    this is why it’s a bad idea to write stuff on the internet after you’ve had a few wines.

  12. Examples from Zetetic’s post indicating no “porkie” that this leadership vote required no trigger from caucus.

    Increasingly, people are coming to the view that the only way to heal this rift and unify the party is for caucus to take the leadership issue out to the membership this February so we can put it to bed once and for all.

    But in reality, if Shearer could show he was willing to give members a say by putting his leadership up for endorsement then I think he’d be rewarded

    Mr Mike Smith,

    With all due respect, I believe what you have written here is quite unfair toward what Zetetic wrote. I did not understand Zetetic’s post to be saying to please use this non-caucus-triggered membership-wide leader endorsment in February; I understood his post to be reasoning that it would be helpful if there was.

    I read it as a plea to the Labour caucus to agree to vote Mr Shearer down, so that this could happen. (Not in order to vote Mr Shearer out – simply to ensure he was endorsed by the members in order to strengthen his, or any other chosen leader’s position) I most certainly didn’t read it as saying this non-caucus-triggered vote is what was decided at the conference. Thus, it is my view that a membership-wide non-caucus triggered endorsement of Shearer was voted down in November is entirely irrelevant to the opinion Zetetic conveyed in his post.

  13. Bright Red 13

    I’ve never played politics at anywhere near Mike’s level – an office on the Labour leader’s corridor of the 3rd floor with a mandate to ‘sort out’ the blogs.

    But I know that when I have arguments with people I sometimes get a little hot feeling in the back of the neck if I’m thinking of saying something that’s over the top and will do my argument more harm than good.

    I imagine that, when you hold the reputation of the Labour leader with the Left’s activist base in your hands, you stay tuned to that feeling very closely.

    I find that it’s harder to feel that warning ping when you’ve had a few.

  14. Mike Smith,

    “Tell the truth” ~ Mike Smith

    I am very concerned over the puzzling information in this post,
    You say re Zetetic’s article: “His talk of a rift in the Labour Party is crap. ”

    However

    Tracy Watkins reports:

    “The conference also laid bare the growing distance between the wider party and the caucus, and particularly the direction Mr Shearer is seeking to take it, toward the political centre.”
    Stuff/Dom Post

    TV3 reports:
    D-day is coming for David Cunliffe. His colleagues are lining up to nail him.
    Labour Party chief whip Chris Hipkins says people have “had enough”.
    “He’s been undermining the leader, he’s been undermining the whole team’s effort – I think people are frustrated,” says Mr Hipkins.

    TV3 News

    And let’s not forget this little beauty:

    “Two very senior MPs have told me they would like an internal travel fund set up to keep Cunliffe out of the country for as long as possible. “

    Duncan Garner

    So please, what is the truth here? That we have a media that are making false reports?
    Please help me out, Mike Smith, I do miss things, I don’t watch mainstream news, nor read the papers religiously. I must have missed the reports that the Labour Party has made a formal complaint regarding these media sources for so seriously misreporting the facts. Can you please give me links to these?

    If it is the “truth” that “2 very senior MPs” approached a political reporter in order to publicly slag off one of their own, I realise it wouldn’t be good for Labour to be seen as internally divided in anyway, and so I am sure that Mr Shearer must have publicly dressed ” the 2 very senior MPs” down for doing so, and I must have also missed that. So please can you tell me where this dressing down was reported and can be found?

    Your love of truth is inspiring, I am sorry to hear our media are such liars, along with Zetetic, really, it’s very disturbing to hear and trust that you will clear up my queries, all for the love of truth

    Cheers

    • karol 14.1

      Well said, bl.

      I there was no rift, there wouldn’t be so many expressions of dissatisfaction surfacing here and in the MSM, and over time.

    • Saarbo 14.2

      Spot on BL. But Mike has become part of the small elite group that control Labour . They dont seem to have any reason to keep members happy, members are just plebs. But take a look at Labours website, compare it to The Green’s. Poor Tim has no resources to spend on keeping it up to date, no money from members I guess.

      Surely this little elite group can find some resources. I feel for the Labour Party executive, they have their work cut out…its all very well for this elite group to continue to ignore members, they have the power to do this. But the website is a joke (just compare it to The Greens, you will see what I mean), a lack of resources will be a problem for Labour. Maybe the Polls will continue to trend in the right direction for Labour. This seems to be the elite groups strategy for success. Well we will continue to watch the polls and see how they go.

  15. What can I say?

    The mood of members at the time was to leave it to caucus rather than demand a vote no matter what.

    But then certain members of caucus started to behave appallingly and Cunliffe was sacked and tensions escalated and over the top demands for loyalty occurred.

    The last time things happened like this was back in the 1980s …

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      The last time things happened like this was back in the 1980s …

      And they turned out such great years for Labour values and principles, if I recall.

      • Olwyn 15.1.1

        The difference is this: back in the eighties they had a story to tell. It has proved false of course, as many knew it would, but until it was proved false you could still tell it and sound as if you meant it. The story was that the Douglas crew aiming for the results that Labour had always sought, but using different methods. This claim, along with the highlighting of the “party of change” point, allowed them to claim, if somewhat tenuously, that their actions were in keeping with Labour’s values. This kite, however, no longer flies, and its replacement, “we have to appeal to the middle class” expresses the side lining of Labour values for expedience sake only. In fact the narrow conception of “middle class” at play, and the attendant suspicion that it is code for business as usual, leaves Labour looking as if there is little to it beyond expedience. This in turn colours the reception of policy; if expedience rules then policy will inevitably be modified or dropped to meet its demands.

  16. Afewknowthetruth 16

    It doesn’t matter who leads Labour now that it has become just another pro-globalisation, pro-money-lender, pro-consumption, pro-destruction-of-the-environment party.

  17. karol 17

    I’m not gloomy. I am positive about the Green Party and a Mana Party with Annette Sykes as an MP, and positive about the flax roots of the left/labour movement, including the Labour Party membership.

    • bad12 17.1

      Nailed my thinking there with that comment, i am even a little confident about Labour as well (no kidding), depending upon the split where the Green Party’s housing policy connects with Labour’s and if this also includes the building of 3000 new State rentals a year then what i see is a 10 year comprehensive housing plan that cuts across all the interest sectors of both party’s from the poorest of the poor to the middle class,

      This far out from November 2014 i feel policy-wise that’s a pretty good start and hopefully both Labour and the Green Party continue to release policy which while directly targeting their voter base ultimately easily connecting with the other’s policy,

      I don’t plan on wasting too much energy on just who is Labour leader nor as this post would infer an internal Labour Party fight between author’s over that question beginning to play out on these pages, much more fun is highlighting National’s stupidity and at times outright lunacy and hammering away at what i see as good or bad policy…

  18. outofbed 18

    Tell the truth?
    Ok The truth is that the Labour Party fought the last election with a leader that we all knew was going to lose. Bang another three years in opposition.

    The truth is that the Labour Party then elected a political novice as leader who is in charge of the most ineffective opposition I have ever seen.

    The truth is that I do not want to get out there , deliver leaflets ,door knock and man phones for the very thin prospect of a Labour / Green /NZF Gov led by Shearer.

    The truth is : You need to get your shit together!

  19. the sprout 19

    Mike, very disappointing to see the depths you’ve sunk to. [deleted]

    [sprout: fair enough IB, I withdraw the unproductive part of the comment]

  20. QoT 20

    Mike, seriously, you’re not a regular commenter here, but this was so not the post to do a hit-and-run on.

  21. One would think at this point in time a concilitory approach would be the answer to the
    comments here that are screaming out for an ounce of democracy, instead mike smith
    throws out a challenge accompanied by using tags of commenters to push his point.
    Further bullying,yes, olive branch,no,it’s a pity that the labour caucus individuals cannot
    bring themselves to engage here in genuine meaningful ways with those who are potential
    voters,foot soldiers,pamplet deliverers etc,clever politics would be to take concerns and
    address them reasonably, not trash commenters for thinking a certain way.
    Myself and my extended family are long time staunch labour people and hold dear to
    genuine labour values and continue to respect those who were responsible for it’s
    exsistance,over the years the Labour Party has been hi-jacked by right wing preditors
    and the results can be seen for themselves today, the angst and determination by those
    that give a damn to bring the party back to it’s core should be respected,not chastised.
    It is not the Labour way to act in the way Shearer did over Cunliffe,it is not the Labour
    way to walk all over democracy, it is the Labour way to be representative of all who
    want to sail in her and to date this Labour ship is only saluting the 31% who blindly
    follow.

  22. tc 22

    Well I’m sure the baubles are nice Mike and trev thinks your doing a bang up job, pity about the middle and lower sections of NZ society the labour party was founded on to look after.

    As that Ozzy halfback said, ‘4 more years boys…’ and then some if the true believers have departed under the mallarfia’s reign.

  23. Elizabeth Bourchier 23

    Mike Smith and TRP are using technical and procedural argument to explain away or ignore the reality .
    The membes feel duped by the caucus leadership.
    The members do not support them.
    We have a huge problem .
    The approach of Mike Smith and TRP exacerbates the problem.
    They are the negative face of the leadership

    • Bill 23.1

      I think your first 5 lines accurately say just about all that needs to be said.

      • Anne 23.1.1

        +1

        Feel really sorry to have to agree because MS and TRP have shown in the past that their hearts are in the right place, but Elizabeth Bourchier has nailed it in the first 5 lines.

  24. Fortran 24

    There will be no vote in February…….
    Caucus will not allow this to happen, as it will bring in the new wave of Party enlarged participation, and they will not want inteference.

    • asd 24.1

      This is a foretelling of future (and current) truths. Until this conflict is resolved between the caucus and membership with some form of full and representative democracy spread throughout the party membership, then no return to traditional labour values will occur.
      It’s time to expunge, purge and liquidate the neo-liberal element from within Labour once and for all. Blood on the floor is necessary now and the rest will fall into place over time, once full democracy has asserted and re-established itself from the membership up into the baubels of power.

  25. Cayte Shepherd 25

    Thank you Mike,

    For putting up the correct version of things.

    I have not seen all this apparent disharmony in the party and where I reside we are getting things done and taking it to the NACT.

    Taking it to the NACT is our focus, our task and our duty for the common good of the nation.

    All these nay sayers should read the Labour Party Web site to get in sight into position and policy. Also thay should read prior manifestos, post the Act behaviour of Prebble and Douglas and co; to understand the socially democratic position, with the fact that polciy is an evolutionary process. It builds year by year, election by election- issue, idea, planning, pilot, evaluation, adjustment and success.

    The nay sayers can either get on the programme or shut up. As what is at stake is the very lives of the people of New Zealand and our unique place and position in the world. That is our sovereignity.

    • IrishBill 25.1

      You misspelled “sovereignty”.

      • Anne 25.1.1

        But she/he got evolutionary right.

        I have to say Cayte has provided me with an epiphany moment. I jus never knew… I’ve always wanted to get into position. I jus didn’t know how. Evolution of course. So all I need to do is build… then when an issue arises I plan and pilot until it evaluates and adjusts. Then I’ll get my position right? That sounds reeeelly easy. But will it be successful?

    • Colonial Viper 25.2

      The nay sayers can either get on the programme or shut up.

      Apparently, according to you, there aren’t any nay-sayers within the Labour Party. All is harmonious.

      The nay sayers can either get on the programme or shut up.

      Great to see Labour’s inclusive, participatory values being championed. Will your next line be from George Bush? “You’re either with us, or you’re against us”.

    • Colonial Weka 25.3

      “All these nay sayers should read the Labour Party Web…”

      You’re kidding right? No-one can find a bloody thing on that dog’s breakfast. We just can’t figure out if the reason for that is incompetence or Labour not wanting the public to have access.

      “… site to get in sight into position and policy. Also thay should read prior manifestos, post the Act behaviour of Prebble and Douglas and co; to understand the socially democratic position, with the fact that polciy is an evolutionary process. It builds year by year, election by election- issue, idea, planning, pilot, evaluation, adjustment and success.

      The nay sayers can either get on the programme or shut up. As what is at stake is the very lives of the people of New Zealand and our unique place and position in the world. That is our sovereignity.”

      Ok, so please post a link to Labour’s position on the TPP and other secret international agreements that clearly states how our sovereignty will be protected if Labour gets to form the next govt. And while you are at it, please provide a link that shows how Labour protected us last time it was governing.

    • QoT 25.4

      Wow, it’s like an issue of Shearer Says, only with an actually-honest depiction of how Shearer and his clique feel about taking criticism when they’re sucking hard.

    • Tiresias 25.5

      “The nay sayers can either get on the programme or shut up.”

      If there was a programme to get on, and if it was a programme I felt comfortable with, I’d shut up.

      My problem, Cayte, is that I don’t hear a programme. If I hear anything it’s half-baked ad hoc responses to dropped clangers from the Govt. or “what do the middle-classes want to hear in exchange for their votes” prevarications.

      You might tell me, quite justifiably, that if Labour doesn’t represent my views it’s because I haven’t put my shoulder to the wheel to get things done and take it to NACT. My answer, rightly or wrongly, is that I’m not a member of the Labour Party and have more important things to so with my life than try to prosletyse my personal political philosophy to a bunch of well-paid charlatans and hypocrits.

      If Labour comes up with a programme I can support, it will get my vote. If it doesn’t I will, as usual, give it to the party I view as the least worst of those on offer – and currently it isn’t Labour.

      I state my views here because I would like to see Labour return to its core values and espouse them honestly and with passion, but if it chooses not to it’s no skin off my nose.

  26. Pascal's bookie 26

    Just quietly, related to things.

    Who would be talking (on a ‘not for attribution’ basis) to Hooten about membership, and what they think it means and blah blah get the message out?

    Already, party bosses report infiltration by former members of the Alliance who have no interest in being part of a modern social democratic party but want to recreate Labour as a replica of their old far-left ideal.

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/labour-heading-another-meltdown-set-go-weekend-review-lf-134941

    Is that really less damaging to Labour than y’know, having a membership vote to endorse the leader?

    • Bill 26.1

      Well, since Matthew reports the claim and since Matthew comments here, I guess Matthew can be asked to disclose who fed that particular take on matters to him, no?

      • Pascal's bookie 26.1.1

        Well he could be asked, but he won’t say.

        It’s one of those anonymous source gigs where the source has one agenda, the writer has another, and the use each other. Keep schtum and it works, release the name and the name becomes the story. Which doesn’t suit either agenda so won’t happen.

        the real story is “senior party official bad mouthing party membership” but no one can actually source that story other than Hoots, and he can’t because ‘source confidentiality.’ The word for this is ‘corruption’ IMV.

        • handle 26.1.1.1

          “Who would be talking (on a ‘not for attribution’ basis)”

          The same anonymous caucus members who have talked with media previously. Who gets told off instead is interesting, isn’t it?

      • bad12 26.1.2

        That is what Mike Williams was saying on the ”Oh i agree with you Matty” and ”Oh i agree with you Mikey” comedy show they both appear in on broadcaster RadioNZ,

        It’s so all time unfunny that i have lost the ability to tell either of them apart so i just save a globule of spit for each…

    • Zetetic 26.2

      “infiltration”? It’s up to the party if they accept membership applications

    • Bill 26.3

      Aren’t many former members of the Alliance former members of the Labour Party? And so (just going with what was reported) aren’t current former Labour Party members then simply rejoining the party they formerly left? And isn’t that a good thng?

      • Zetetic 26.3.1

        the Paganis are former Alliance members, maybe that’s what Hoots is talking about 🙂

    • just saying 26.4

      I thought Mike Williams had made a comment about this during the recent RNZ “nutters and extremists” dialogue with Matthew Hooten.

      I don’t want to listen to that again. Does anyone remember if it was indeed Williams who said it?

      • Colonial Viper 26.4.1

        apparently you and karol thought it was Williams:

        Open mike 22/01/2013

        • Pascal's bookie 26.4.1.1

          aaah. Odd that he doesn’t just say Williams in his piece. But hooten and odd go together like snakes and venom.

          • Bill 26.4.1.1.1

            But is Mike Williams a ‘party boss’?

            • Elizabeth Bourchier 26.4.1.1.1.1

              Bill asks “Is Mike Williams a Party Boss?”

              He is paid money by the party.
              He has the ear of the leadership.
              He know the willing funders.
              He is seen a a senior representative by Media.
              That adds up to a lot of influence.
              Yes, a Boss!

            • Matthew Hooton 26.4.1.1.1.2

              Obviously, Mike Williams is not the “party boss” I referred to. Mike is retired and is not a “party boss” any more. The party boss I referred to is, well, a party boss. Currently.

          • just saying 26.4.1.1.2

            Does anyone else find it a bit odd that the recent Labour Party conference unanimously passed a remit decrying Rogernomics, and now just a few months later, its representatives are claiming that former Alliance members are infiltrating the party. Maybe the remit needed to be more specific. Maybe it was the fashion-sense or the dietary habits of the Lange/Douglas government that were being denounced. Nothing to do with the policies.
            Could we have some clarification please Mike?

        • karol 26.4.1.2

          My memory was that Williams mentioned the Alliance when he was talking about going to the Shearer Conference speech last year. He hadn’t been to the rest of the conference, but at the speech, he thought the members present were different from those of Williams was used to at previous conferences. He said there was a lot of new faces, many looking like Alliance members of old. And he said, in the past, members were just happy to cheer whatever the leaders/caucus said. Now he didn’t like that there were members who weren’t just there to cheer the team in a united way. He didn’t like there was now some dissent.

          As I recall Ryan said that style of conference when members are just there to cheer the team was boring, and she welcomed a change to more critical debate. Probably somewhere in this audio file.

          But this doesn’t match up with IrishBill thinking it was about him asking people to join the party AFTER the conference.

          • karol 26.4.1.2.1

            Just listening to the RNZ audio file, and it’s about half way to 2 thirds into it that they get on to blogs and the “anti-Shearer hate speech” on TS (given how MH & MW talk about bloggers and TS – pot meet kettle).

            It’s Hooton who mentions that many LP members now are ex-Alliance. Williams interrupts & says there were faces at the conference he hadn’t seen for a very long time. Then Ryan cuts them short.

            • just saying 26.4.1.2.1.1

              Thanks for that.
              So it may well be that Hooten’s source is his own typewriter.

              Still, is this a picture of a party which has genuinely seen the error of its ways about Rogernomics. I think not. They were just throwing the plebs a few plastic bones.

            • The Fan Club 26.4.1.2.1.2

              Er, guys, lots of y’all really are the bores and loons that any party has to put up with.

              Also my suspicion is that ex-Alliance is a bit misleading; the group referred to is ex-rump-Alliance. The ex-Progressives and 80’s Labour left are pretty solidly backing Shearer these days.

              • Colonial Viper

                The ex-Progressives and 80′s Labour left are pretty solidly backing Shearer these days.

                Last I looked 800,000 of them stayed home

              • just saying

                Yeah sure. Someone spotted Chris Trotter at the conference. Whoopie doo.
                Some day the ABCs might remember he always attends Labour conferences. If the paranoic group-think ever wears off that is…

            • billbrowne 26.4.1.2.1.3

              Er, TFC you’ve arrived a bit late to this debate to start casting your aspersions willy nilly – What is this? Shift change now that TRP has given up and gone to the pub?

          • blue leopard 26.4.1.2.2

            Its kind of an interesting comment re ex-Alliance, sorry, not terribly up with the play with the goings on of politics 20odd years ago, however, wasn’t Alliance a break-away from Labour anyway? If so, then is it really that sinister that some might be coming back?

            It appears Hooton et al are working on a form of conspiracy-style presentation. This is an effective way to confuse us all. With conspiracies, you often can never really refute them. It reminds me of courtroom antics. Cast doubt in peoples’ mind–suspicion–and you are more than halfway there; peoples’ minds do the rest of the work.

    • ianmac 26.5

      I have always treated with suspicion words from Mr Hooton but now I think he sums up a credible viewpoint in his NBR column. Like this for instance: ….the minority will spend its time not taking the fight to the dreaded Tories, but signing up new members and manipulating union personnel.
      That’s what I think.

      • IrishBill 26.5.1

        By signing up new members I can only assume that he means my call for members to join following the party becoming more democratic: /a-good-time-to-join-labour/ . If you read it you’ll see that it is clearly a Machiavellian attempt to destroy the party from within. Or possibly it’s the work of a labour party activist who has seen an opportunity to sign up some members to the party he belongs to (y’know, like the party officials used to badger us to do).

        Which reminds me, I promised some more posts on how the Party works and I never got around to them. I guess I better get going on that.

        • geoff 26.5.1.1

          And what about the manifesto posts?

          • IrishBill 26.5.1.1.1

            Indeed. I need to do something on those too, I’m thinking I might do something on a financial transaction tax. Of course you’re also free to do a guest post on any of the policies mentioned on that thread. you can email it to us at thestandardnz at gmail dot com.

      • Jackal 26.5.2

        Although it pains me to say, I have to agree with you there ianmac. Hooton’s article isn’t as bad as the usual claptrap that passes for churnalism at the NBR, which isn’t saying much really.

    • Anne 26.6

      Already, party bosses report infiltration…

      (It reads like a quote from a WW2 thriller)

      We’re talking about unofficial party bosses right? Y’know, like the bosses of the ABC club? The ones who are running the Labour show behind the scenes – Trev and co? Talking of Trev, isn’t he tripping the light fantastic with a political journo these days?

    • QoT 26.7

      One simply hates to be snarky, but … how many former members of the Alliance who haven’t already joined Labour or the Greens or Mana or the Maori Party can there be?

      • just saying 26.7.1

        Mostly the Greens in my experience.

        I’m ex-alliance, (from ages ago) and I joined Labour during IB’s membership drive. I suspect though, I was probably the only one from here, for maybe two or three total, of the new members. This ex-Alliance thing is another spin like the one that says this is all about (and driven by) Cunliffe.

        And it’s worth mentioning that among the motivating factors in my joining were the democratisation of the party rules during the conference, particularly of the membership deciding policy, and the denunciation of Rogernomics (apparently for their haircuts, but I wasn’t to know that at the time).

        So here I am. One of possibly three dangerous ex-Alliance infiltrators.

        • Colonial Viper 26.7.1.1

          The Alliance got something like 18% of the vote, in the first elections it participated in (1993). Under MMP it would have been a very big party.

          • QoT 26.7.1.1.1

            But the accusation is about “infiltration by former members of the Alliance”, not voters. And given the length of time it’s been pretty much defunct as a party, I would have imagined a lot of those former members, if still active in politics, would have already decamped to L/G/Mana/MP.

            So where would any hypothetical groundswell of former Alliance members even come from if there were such a dastardly plot to turn the Labour Party into some kind of leftwing organisation?

        • Tiresias 26.7.1.2

          Guess I’d be another – went into the Alliance with the Greens in 1991 and left it with the Greens in ’97.

          Gave up Green Party membership, tho’, in 2005 when Sue Bradford blew most of the politcal capital I’d spent 15-years helping the party accumulate on her pointless, irrelevant, unnecessarily divisive, inane and asinine Child Smacking Bill.

          So yeah, I’m a Third Columnist, here to save Labour by destroying it.

  27. TheContrarian 27

    A poster at The Standard telling lies? Well colour me unsurprised.

    3 people got blocked last week for querying some bullshit someone made up. Then I was handed a week block (which is finished today – hurrah for me) for pointing out that people were being blocked for pointing out bullshit.

    Welcome to The Standard

    IrishBill: you were blocked for asking me to name a source and then telling me I was a liar because I wouldn’t. Pull that shit again and you’ll get banned again. Welcome back.

    • infused 27.1

      Oh Irish, stop being a cry baby. Post the source or shut the hell up next time.

      [RL: The media quote unnamed sources all the time, and while I’m not a great fan of the practise it strikes me that if IB wants to do the same for his own reasons … then so what. Take the hint.]

  28. TheContrarian 28

    “IrishBill: you were blocked for asking me to name a source and then telling me I was a liar because I wouldn’t. Pull that shit again and you’ll get banned again. Welcome back.”

    You know that isn’t true right? Here, lets see what actually happened…

    Being there

    If you say something like “John Key arranged the whole trip for Bronagh” people will quite rightly ask for a source which not only you failed to provide but you also failed to provide any reasoning as to why you couldn’t cite a source. Instead you just banned people for reasonably questioning you.

    Classy.

    • Colonial Weka 28.1

      I think you meant to link to this

      Being there

      • TheContrarian 28.1.1

        Well whatever, the whole conversation is the main point here.

        Person A says something
        Person B asks for a source
        Person A refuses
        Person B calls bullshit
        Person A bans person B
        Person C calls Person A out
        Person A bans person C
        Person D calls out Person A for banning people who asked for a source
        Person A bans person D
        Person A then threatens to ban any one else who dares question them.

        Robust debate indeed.

        • fenderviper 28.1.1.1

          Person D never gets over it, can’t sleep all week.

          Sibling of D dreads family get-togethers due to 30 year feud over missing toy.

        • Colonial Weka 28.1.1.2

          Person A says something
          Person B asks for a source
          Person A points out that it will come out via the OIA
          Person C attacks person A (who is an author)
          Person A bans person C (because attacking authors is against te rules)
          Person B says something stupid about Person A
          Person A bans person C (probably for wasting moderator’s time)
          Person TC questions the moderator’s decision in an insulting way.
          Person A bans person TC (for being a dick)
          Person E then calls person A a cunt, which makes person A laugh (because it was a joke, which just goes to show).

          etc.

          FIFY

          TC, you really don’t get context and subtext do you? Sure person A has an itchy trigger finger when it comes to moderation. But we all know that, so if you choose to bait him, then you can’t really complain about the consequences.

          • TheContrarian 28.1.1.2.1

            I sleep just fine thanks.

            The reality is that Irish is full of shit and exposes The Standard as a place where intellectual honesty goes to die.

            No wonder the left is, sadly, fucked when it’s ‘champions’ behave like stampy footed children with shit for brains.

            • IrishBill 28.1.1.2.1.1

              You got that all off your chest now?

              • TheContrarian

                Dishonesty – particularly when combined with hypocrisy – is not something one should practice with such flippant haste.

                You demonstrated both and you know it.

                • IrishBill

                  Heh, you’ve come back all fired up. Good for you.

                  • TheContrarian

                    It interests me that you are so comfortable with your own intellectual dishonesty.

                    You should join the National Party.

                    • Zetetic

                      who’s an angry boy, then.

                      But you can’t stay away.

                    • TheContrarian

                      I don’t get angry, but the lefty in me does get frustrated by those who display the worst attributes of the right – dishonesty and hypocrisy. As displayed by Irish.

                      I ‘can’t stay away’ because I enjoy discussing things with people I may have disagreements with. It’s for the same reason I comment at Kiwiblog. You never learn anything by only talking with people you agree with….though I draw the line at Whaleoil and Tumeke.

                      IrishBill: I’ve tried to be patient with you, but you can take another week off for calling me a liar.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Welcome back, TC.

                    • TheContrarian

                      Thanks CV – good to see you around I might add.

                    • Jackal

                      Person A for author writes something
                      Person B criticizes person A because he doesn’t agree
                      Person B then insults person A because they won’t change what they wrote or conform to person B’s beliefs
                      Person A warns person B because that’s the rules
                      Person B doesn’t like being warned because he’s a megalomaniac
                      Person B then gets all bent out of shape
                      Person B after stroking his own ego decides to take out his frustrations online
                      Person B then makes up some rather inane argument to try and piss people off
                      Person C disagrees with said frustrated argument because it’s stupid
                      Person B insults person C while trying to be their friend
                      Person A warns person B again because said argument is degrading the debate into another snipe-fest
                      Person B’s ego gets the better of him once again
                      Person A bans person B for being a fuckwit
                      Person C is happy at the better level of debate without person B around.
                      Person D comes along and person B is forgotten about.

                    • McFlock

                      lol that was quick

                  • chris73

                    As I tried to explain I wasn’t saying you were lying (which to me is a deliberate act) but rather you were just being a dick by making a flippant (dare I say trolling) remark (I mean really claiming OIA as a reason to not cite the source…) and then you got all sarky and petulant because it got pointed out to you

                    Hopefully that clears the whole misunderstanding up

                    • IrishBill

                      I just realised you mean a source like a link to a media article. No, my source was more like a confidential leak, a “I don’t disclose my sources” kind of a source. And yes, I believe there are OIAs that have been filed for documents that disclose what I was told.

  29. Arkonaut 29

    This is no way to run a political party. When will it ever end? Mike Smith, what made you think that publicly attacking the motives of a big part of the political party you work for would be a good idea?

    I’m all for democratic participation by members in political parties but this has just spiralled out of control. There is no end in sight for this apart from a split down the middle for the Labour Party. Screaming at each other in public only serves as entertainment for the people on the right.

    No disrespect to Camp Cunliffe, but the ability of any faction to run an insurgency against the leadership is not sustainable. No disrespect to Camp Shearer, but your inability to engage with your own members isn’t sustainable either.

    The way I see it the only way for this to be resolved is for Cunliffe to agree not to challenge Shearer before the election, for Cunliffe to be promoted to deputy leader and given back finance, and for Shearer to agree to a membership wide selection of the leader after the next election. And get yesterday’s men and women from mallard and goff and king down to publicly announce post-election retirements so you can get some new energy in. Until that happens Labour is a lost cause.

    • Elizabeth Bourchier 29.1

      Arkonaut.
      the best post of the day.
      Pour yourself a glass.
      I’ll join you.
      I’m humbled by your calmness

    • QoT 29.2

      No disrespect to Camp Cunliffe, but the ability of any faction to run an insurgency against the leadership is not sustainable.

      That would be really awesome advice if said insurgency existed. Citation?

      • Arkonaut 29.2.1

        QoT, let’s not play with semantics. I didn’t mean to offend you with that term. Camp Cunliffe want Cunliffe as leader, and ABC want anybody but Cunliffe as leader. That is an impasse which neither side will win unless there’s a split in the Labour Party and both sides get their way and both sides lose. That’s not in the best interests of Labour. No side ever wins in a civil war. There needs to be compromise on both sides. I believe the best compromise is for Camp Cunliffe and ABC to agree to make peace, Cunliffe to put aside his leadership ambitions until after the election, and for Shearer’s old guard guard agree to step down at the election. With all that noise out of the way the members will be in a much better position to choose a post-election leader. If Shearer wins the election then he’ll remain leader. If he doesn’t then he will step down anyway, and Cunliffe and Robertson can fight it out between them.

        • RedLogix 29.2.1.1

          Well you are right Arkonaut.

          But you missing an essential point. As long as you keep repeating the idea that Cunliffe (or some faction backing him) tried to unseat Shearer at the last Conference … then you are buying into a fight that does not exist. The ABC faction is essentially shadow-boxing a figment of their imaginations; a battle they can never win.

          As long as they keep battling this monster that does not exist … there can be no rapproachment. In principle you are right, Helen Clark made a terrific ally in Michael Cullen after some period of tension between them. Both were capable, talented people and were all the better working together.

          But in that case Helen was her own person, used her own judgement and got Michael onside and in the game. In the meantime Shearer(and the ABC crew) seems stuck in battle mode…

          Now it’s true that there is a large group of LP members who would prefer Cunliffe as Leader, but I’m pretty sure that given that’s not likely to happen anytime soon, they’d settle for a Party that was able to harness his experience and talent constructively.

          • Colonial Viper 29.2.1.1.1

            Arkonaut and RL you both make good suggestions and you would think that grown ups would work it out using these kinds of approaches. But what was it Trotter said? Some people would prefer to be in control of a losing Labour Party than without control of a winning Labour Party.

            In the short term we have parts of our society at absolute crisis and breaking point and in the longer term (but still only a 20-30 year timeframe), most parts of our society is going to be there, with a combination of peak climate and peak oil hitting all of us.

            Yet the officers of the Titanic, sworn to protect and serve the passengers, are all arguing about who is going to sit at the head of the banquet table even as compartment after compartment fills up with water.

            This kind of internecine power struggle is sustainable on the upslope of economic growth and increasing energy and resource availability. On the downslope, where we are now, it becomes a disaster for most everyone. Even the eventual winners will be nothing but losers.

          • The Fan Club 29.2.1.1.2

            Hey, I reckon if Cunliffe had said on Saturday morning “I support David Shearer as leader, and I look forward to serving in the Shearer ministry in 2014” he’d still be front bench. Shearer is under no obligation to have shadow ministers briefing against him, refusing to back him, organising against him.

            If you can’t say that you back the leader to the media, then no, you shouldn’t be on the front bench of the Labour Party. Cunliffe made himself the story at conference, and that’s the point at which demotion was inevitable.

            I think Cunliffe should retire at this election. He’s made it clear that he sees his role in the party as leader or nothing. It’s not going to be leader, and so it may as well be nothing.

            • Olwyn 29.2.1.1.2.1

              What utter tripe! David Cunliffe is an excellent electorate MP to begin with. He also did his economic development job with energy and commitment. Not to mention the years he served well in Clark’s government.

            • Colonial Viper 29.2.1.1.2.2

              Hey asshole, you’re what is wrong with this party right now. “You’re either with us or you’re against us”? Where have I heard that before. Fucking Republicans.

              • The Fan Club

                Asshole? CV you’re an idiot on the internet who’s a liability to the organised left within the party. If you just went and sat quietly in the corner for the next three years, it’d be a massive fucking help to those of us who want to get to a proper left Labour party. I doubt you will, of course, because the self-entitled crazy runs too deep, but whatever.

                • xtasy

                  20 to 25 per cent of NZ voters sat and sit in the corner, dear old matey or mateyress, whatever. You are just not aware of reality as it is.

                  If you believe the present Labour Party will get the votes it needs, which will mean getting those non voters motivated to vote for them, in the coming election, you are an idiot!

                  Labour is a redundant party, it is DEAD, apart from a few zombies populating seats in the House, and some that work for them, and Mike Smith happens to be one of them.

                  By the way, I would like to learn a bit more about Mike Smith. I have some sensitive documents from MSD, exposing some very sensitive, dicey stuff, and some memos were bearing the name of a Mike Smith, working for MSD in high ranks.

                  Now is Mike Smith here the same Mike Smith perhaps?

                  If so, I would be very, very worried!

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Pretty much. Labour is a dying brand coasting along on the name it built between 1930 and 1970.

                    TFC:

                    CV you’re an idiot on the internet who’s a liability to the organised left within the party. If you just went and sat quietly in the corner for the next three years, it’d be a massive fucking help to those of us who want to get to a proper left Labour party.

                    Meh. Coming from someone who is middle of the road centrist political road kill.

                    • xtasy

                      Being a fan of a corpse is bizarre. It is a real worry, is it not, CV, as necrophilia is not healthy!?

                  • JK

                    To Xtasy – re a Mike Smith at MSD. Doubt its the Labour Mike Smith – he (the Labour MS) used to be in the engineers union.

          • Jenny 29.2.1.1.3

            Now it’s true that there is a large group of LP members who would prefer Cunliffe as Leader, but I’m pretty sure that given that’s not likely to happen anytime soon, they’d settle for a Party that was able to harness his experience and talent constructively.

            RedLogix

            That’s not gonna happen.

            The ABC’s can’t take the risk that Cunliffe might start speaking up againn about the Climate . The way he used to, before he was shut down. Not while these dinosaurs are fully committed to ripping up the planet for the benefit of the corporate elite.

        • QoT 29.2.1.2

          I’m not offended by the term, I’m just annoyed that by virtue of being someone who thinks that Cunliffe would be a better leader (and that Labour is severely lacking in terms of other good candidates) I (and others) are assumed to be part of some organised conspiracy or faction.

          I’m also annoyed by the regular cries to “make peace” and “accept Shearer as leader for the time being” as though the only reason anyone’s pointing out that Captain Mumblefuck is a crap leader is because they’re part of the conspiracy.

          It could just be that I simultaneously think Cunliffe would be a better leader and that Shearer is doing a shit job. And if Cunliffe were leader and had done much the same as Shearer over the past year I’d be all over that shit too.

          • blue leopard 29.2.1.2.1

            I believe what you are illustrating succinctly here is the spin being manufactured and employed. It is a pity that some on The Standard are falling for it.

            Knowledge is power.

            Spin wouldn’t work if people use their reason and cut through it. The spin is mangled b/s and people are falling for it. See through it. See through it and it holds no power.

          • Scintilla 29.2.1.2.2

            +1.

            Absolutely. Every time I hear JK is “relaxed” about a major issue, or he doesn’t recall the details, or his slippery-slidey scale of ethics that he applies to his Ministers according to how much he needs them – I wait in vain for a pithy attack from Shearer. So much ammunition, so little response.

            It is the wasted opportunities, the great gaping holes big enough to drive a convoy of UN aid trucks through, that Shearer has let slip. Whoever’s running the Labour show has completely and utterly wasted the chances begging to be taken in 2012 to unseat this government. IMO, a concerted centre-left attack on the major issues would have been a roaring success – education (how is Parata still there? Come on!), asset sales, environment – especially water issues, housing, jobs and the Oz exodus.

            Kim Dotcom’s done a better job of embarrassing the government and pointing out its defects.

            Key has a much better speechwriter than Shearer (whoever it is – retire.) Key’s early speeches in Opposition and those that got him into power were more ‘galvanise the people’ trad. Labour than Nact. Those floating centrist voters and those that didn’t vote at all want a Party and a Leader they can believe in. If Labour can’t bring themselves to be that Party they will slowly expire.

            As for Cunliffe, I simply cannot understand why the most articulate, seasoned and competent debater has been sidelined.

  30. hush minx 30

    Dear Mike, it seems oddly personal to reply to your post in this way, but given the strength of your attack it seems like there is no easy alternative. I can understand your frustration. Indeed, it is the same emotion as many of the authors and commentators exhibit here. But indulging in such a blatant attempt at bullying coercion can only be counter active to your intention of swaying peoples opinion. I think the lesser of you as a result. This is the sort of nastiness I associate with the senior mps who go around badmouthing their opponents. Surely in your union life you learn how to resolve issues constructively rather than finger pointing and shouting? Can I suggest trying to understand what it is that people are trying to tell you, and others in the party leadership team. Listening is the start.

  31. xtasy 31

    Well, I did not expect much else from Mike Smith, and his “reminder” of what was NOT passed at the conference is just only so little bit relevant to what the rest of us feel and think.

    Of course you have to realise, there is no way to have a Feb. vote and challenge without a Caucus vote forcing it (40 per cent, is it?). We have heard all this before. What others here asked was for Shearer to stand up and ask for confirmation of his role through the whole membership, no matter whether a caucus asks for it or not.

    That though will not happen, as Shearer does NOT take risks now, he will stick to his Caucus, of course.

    It shows what this is all about, and what the state of Labour is like. I am totally confirmed and convinced, all this flagellation and self flagellation I read here, it is just proof again, the Labour Party is BEYOND REPAIR! It is derelict, full of rot and not worth saving, as the base does not even have a fair and real chance to bring about change. Democracy was attempted at the conference, but the key to apply it never was allowed.

    The vote of the ones, who were too scared of too much democracy saw to it.

    So just once again, I remind you all, Labourites and Ex Labourites, it is time to leave “home”, or what you used to perceive as “home”, grow up, take a stand, and found a NEW LEFT PARTY, get rid of all those baggage bearers, they are nothing but lead to the prospects of reform, change and improvements for the better. NO HOPE with Shearer at the helm, NO hope for many, many years.

    Amen

  32. xtasy 32

    Also: Zetetic never “told porkies”, as he simply expressed the frustrations in the membership and suggested, yes perhaps demanded, that Shearer faced a membership wide vote. What the hell is wrong with that?

    Mike, you try to portray it as if he did not know, or ignored that the para you quote was rejected. That is though not at all what Zetetic’s post was about. It was about the need to get clear air, clear decisions and support or not, nothing else. Shearer could have voluntarily decided to have a membership vote, but of course he chose NOT to, guess why?!

    You know all the answers, as your boss sits with you in his office, right?

    I am sorry, this is all getting so bloody ridiculous and sick, I can only tell everyone her, thing again, listen again, review your political orientation and votes, as I feel Labour does not deliver much anymore.

    We need a new party to the left, not more of the same BS, sorry.

  33. Apart from one election in the Douglas years, I have voted Labour all my life. If there is a unanimous confidence vote in Shearer in February I will not again. MPs can be threatened and bullied, I understand that, but a secret ballot, a membership wanting a voice, and a Leadership team beholden to King/Mallard will not win. Be bold, be brave, be honest and vote no confidence.

    Then let the fulsome electoral college process heal this Party by either endorsing Shearer or someone new.

  34. mikey77 34

    Word is that Shearer will be kicked out because he co habitates with someone of the opposite sex. Something not looked kindly on in the Labour party,

  35. Mark 35

    Happiness is a quick visit to The Standard, watching an increasing number of desperate troughers jostling for position at a trough that by their own blind ideology becomes smaller and smaller.. soon it will be an icecream container half empty of mungbeans…

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  • The tiniest of teeth
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  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
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  • Black April, May and June?
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  • What’s in the Coronavirus Package?
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    2 weeks ago
  • I just had my benefit suspended during a fucking pandemic
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    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: COVID-19 Alert Level 4
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    23 hours ago
  • SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency an...
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  • Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare
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    2 weeks ago
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    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: COVID-19 rescue package ‘more significant’ than any worldwide
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  • Our response to COVID-19
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  • ‘Demerit Points System’ will address youth crime
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  • Investment in kingfish farming
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  • 1BT grants for Northland planting
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  • New Zealand reaffirms support for Flight MH17 judicial process
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  • PGF investment in green hydrogen
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  • Coronavirus support for Pacific
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  • Green Party passes landmark law to ensure deaf and disabled voices heard equally in democracy
    Chlöe Swarbrick's Members Bill to support disabled general election candidates has passed into law. ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
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  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
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  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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    2 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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    2 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
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  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
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  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
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  • COVID-19 updates
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  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
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    3 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
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    4 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
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    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
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    4 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
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    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
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    4 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
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    4 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
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    5 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
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    5 days ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
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    5 days ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
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    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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    6 days ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
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    6 days ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
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    6 days ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
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    7 days ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
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    1 week ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
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    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
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    1 week ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
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    1 week ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
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    1 week ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
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    1 week ago
  • Transit between Australia and New Zealand
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    1 week ago
  • $100 million to redeploy workers
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    1 week ago
  • More support for wood processing
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    1 week ago
  • Govt steps in to protect Air New Zealand
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    1 week ago
  • Stronger border measures to protect NZers from COVID-19
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    1 week ago
  • Action on indoor gatherings and events to protect public health
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealanders advised not to travel overseas
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    1 week ago
  • Govt announces aviation relief package
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