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This coming digital war

Written By: - Date published: 8:12 am, October 21st, 2017 - 68 comments
Categories: blogs, David Farrar, democracy under attack, democratic participation, Dirty Politics, dpf, internet, jacinda ardern, labour, Media, national, Propaganda, same old national, spin, The Standard, twitter - Tags:

The last Labour government we had here, if anyone can remember back eighteen years, started in December 1999. Not exactly pre-internet, but certainly before Twitter, Facebook, Baidu, Snapchat, and blogsites had any major impact on politics.

Even three years later it was still possible for an actual printed book to have some impact on the campaign. Nicky Hagar’s Seeds of Distrust came out to tilt at the snap election called at the same time. But does anyone remember the last time a Letter to the Editor made any impact?

The Clark government began back in the day when the sea of the media was a great rolling tide with large and predictable waves that hit the seawall of the collective public mind in nice big predictable echoes. These days those rolling great stories still come in, but the wave size and interval is unpredictably deadly. Digital social media is the global warming of human response: all is accelerated, all storms are greater in intensity and force, collective minds are more febrile, actions and reactions are algorhythmically destabilised beyond what we have ever seen.

Jacinda Ardern owes her career and her rise to leader of New Zealand to that change in the fluid dynamics of political discourse. Young people are driving the energy of that sea. Commentators – paid or unpaid – are precisely the wind itself. As well as a massively resourced Opposition, and untold coalition faultlines to come, this government is being launched into this hostile, roiling black thing.

In this era, that media is now you and me.

If this fresh government is to have any chance at survival, we have to move our influence beyond The Standard. It is inarguable that this is the most influential left-leaning blogsite in New Zealand. But like the voting patters itself between Labour and the Greens, its debates take points almost entirely off each other. We write on a primary alternative means for the new government to change minds.

The Standard is of no use to Jacinda Ardern and her government if that influence is not pushed out to greater effect than it is now.

There are plenty of competent writers here. There are even a few interesting ones.

There are a fair few who are good at rolling out snappy bon mots.

But they are lost here.

We all need our own Twitter accounts.

We need to reach out actively to our clearly influential friends at GreaterAuckland.

We all need our own handles on Kiwiblog, Whaleoil, and beyond.

Perhaps if we do so we could support each other before we venture forth.

Done well, Kiwiblog and Whaleoil will bring down the next government. Even with New Zealand First in proper coalition, the numbers in Parliament are still fairly tight. Exceltium, Senate, Saunders Unsworth and all the other Dark Arts practitioners will continue their dedicated work to turn stories into nightmares for the most inexperienced Cabinet we have seen in my lifetime. They will do so legally, and they are paid for results. They will concentrate their detailed profiles on the weakest Members of Parliament, the stupid Ministers seeking to regulate where industry did not want regulation, and they will bring them down until this government falls.

Our measure of doing well is when our writing is so good that it is picked up and becomes its own wave series. This currently happens all too rarely.

To my mind there is little doubt that the petition against Mike Hosking moderating the leaders’ debate was effective.

But the real campaign begins now. In case we forget, the Clark government was spectacularly damaged in 2008 through dumb small ideas that got blown up and we didn’t sufficiently respond.

I am not proposing a hive mind in which we all receive the weeks’ hit-lines every Monday evening after Cabinet like Shepilov under Stalin, then echo them like heroic Tweeting Canaries into the coalmine of our black national soul. I know only how intensely vulnerable this new government is to digital media attack, right now, while they are disorganised and inchoate.

There are some like Stephanie Rodgers who are penetrating into the mainstream commentariat, and have consistently strong followings on line.

There must be more.

Comment by comment, they must be us.

Because this government under Jacinda Ardern will probably fall if we don’t.

68 comments on “This coming digital war ”

  1. The Fairy Godmother 1

    Could someone run a workshop on this.

    • Heather Grimwood 1.1

      Fairy Godmother…you have motivated me to take idea further in my region..thank you.

      • The Fairy Godmother 1.1.1

        If is works well in your region I am sure people from other regions could pay for your travel and accommodation costs to run workshops in other places. I would be very interested in attending and perhaps trainees could be taught how to teach others it could grow really well.

        • Heather Grimwood 1.1.1.1

          to Fairy Godmother at 1.1.1 : I certainly haven’t that expertise, but will
          proceed with discussions.

  2. Keepcalmcarryon 2

    Read Trotter on TDB, Prebble is running what looks to be the establishment attack line, in various fora the line “illegitimate government” is surfacing. This must be countered swiftly. Fake news.

    • Heather Grimwood 2.1

      Keepcalmcarryon : agree this attack line coming from many angles.

    • Incognito 2.2

      Nah, it’s ‘pretty legal’ 😉

      Chris Trotter and others are not much help IMO; they are on the other side of the same coin Prebble and the likes.

      The dominant narrative is still the same and this needs to changed, not countered; tit-for-tat is the same as tat-for-tit.

      Take this sentence, for example:

      Such an open declaration of war against the neoliberal establishment was bound to draw an equally belligerent response.

      It’s highly illustrative how the new Opposition is going to fight (!) back, i.e. by using the same narrative that has served them so well particularly over the last 9 years.
      A war against the “the neoliberal establishment” is not a war against the people who did not vote for Labour, NZ First, or the Greens.

      Trotter’s last sentence further perpetuates this polarization. Labour, NZ First, and the Greens have committed themselves to fulfilling the hopes and dreams of all of the New Zealand electorate, not just the 50.4 percent who voted for them. In fact, I like to think that many of the policies that will be implemented by the new Government will get the approval, by and large, from many people who did not actually vote for the new Government. These people are not the real problem!

      I suggest that a new narrative is needed, one that is more closely aligned with the way the Greens conduct their politics and build & maintain relationships. If we keep fighting back with the same weapons as our ‘enemy’ and on their terms we will be just like them and never be able to move on, especially if our opponent has better weapons and fewer scruples.

  3. Heather 3

    Well said Greg. The negative backlash is alive and well this morning. Comments that must be counteracted quickly.
    The defeated right will be vicious in defeat, we know what their print partners are capable of, this will intensify by the week.
    A workshop would a good.
    I have taken a step with a Twitter account.

    • Patricia Bremner 3.1

      Jacinda herself showed the way.

      Relentless positivity. Messages of hope with caring and people centered messages.

      Tamati Coffey has great skills in this area also. A fine model.

      Something people want to be associated with every day. Keeping them engaged.

  4. I’m sorry ,… I don’t do any of that shit. I was a generation behind all of that new fangled shit so I lucked out.

    I’ve just learned how to use the interweb , play my game and use the news and links and read up on the news. All good if you can use all that other stuff… but I’m still back in the old days,.. and from where I stand?… I’m sure as hell glad of it.

    All power to you modern types ,… as for me ?

    I’m here. Back in the 19th century.

    Right up there with Billy the Kid and Clyde Barrow.

    And I’m not apologizing for it either.

    Bon Jovi – Wanted Dead Or Alive – YouTube

  5. The Fairy Godmother 5

    have just reset my password and gone on twitter. Might have to learn on the job so to speak.

  6. eco Maori/kiwi 6

    Good post David I think we need a code of conduct draw up for our media, social media as the neo liberals will use any tack tick to bring down OUR new Government . I.E If thee article has
    no facts and damages ones reputation that’s $100.000 fine well some thing like that I’m just a novices but a lot of resources need to be put into sorting out this problem Quick to make it fair because the right will use any advantage fair or not fair to kick us in the private parts . I have tried to get a twitter ac but some one is using my email and pseudo as well I will put more time into sorting this out or find and pay a tec savvy person to help me sort this out as my children are just to busy with there life to help.

  7. millsy 7

    No quarter given or asked for really.

    To be honest, I won’t be surprised if Jacinda is ‘Whitlamed’ in the next 3 years with all the shit that is gonna go down.

    I know Cunliffe would have been..

  8. Aaron 8

    This article describes how National set up their social media team – members of which are often the first to post.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11510969

    We really need someone to archive this before it disappears

    • Yeah most definitely ,… but the truth be told,.. all major social movements come about as a result of critical mass point,…now technology’s good ,… but most average types are not interested in the latest nerd crap.

      No insult to nerds.

      They are needed.

      As this article most demonstrates.

      But most of us ‘ averages ‘ don’t need facebook or bitcoin or any other of that sort of geek shit.

      We appraise by eye movement , faltering voices and bastards who don’t know what to do with their hands. Its primeval. Its crude and its simplistic. Like a wolf pack. Pretty basic. Welcome to the human race.Sorry to burst your bubble but when the Mujahideen beat the Americans by using a simple woolen blanket to foil their high tech heat seeking helicopter mounted infrared cameras?

      That tells you much about the prowess of geek technology.

      Its overrated.

      Nothing beats up close and personal.

      • One Two 8.1.1

        WK you’re an intuitive individial

        You’re comments tell as much..

        Technology relieves people of intuition, the same way that ‘reliance’ on any man made frameworks do…

        I include ‘science’ within the same sphere…

        Intuition and those primal instincts you refer to, are the most critical ‘tools’ any of us have..

        Use them, exercise them and they will provide all that is necessary for managing our human existence and networks in harmony with the surroundings. .

        I enjoy your comments…

        • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1.1.1

          Hint: once you start naming things you’ve moved beyond intuitive understanding. Taoists mentioned this 2500 years ago.

          Please try and keep up.

          • One Two 8.1.1.1.1

            You don’t have to beg..and you could have stayed away from the show of appreciation to WK..

            In any case, I am not interested in your repetitive, unoriginal quoting/referencing of others..

            Try something original…

            Your protracted contribution here is still resoundingly negative..

            • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1.1.1.1.1

              …says the person who doesn’t understand that technology and intuition are complimentary assets.

  9. Visubversa 9

    Yes, there are still people moaning about Nanny State lightbulbs and showerheads.

    There needs to be a “Fox News Filter” – the ability to look at stuff and think – “what is the worst thing some low life Tory scumbag who lies as they breathes can do with this” and make the message simple enough to prevent that. Think Sarah Palin and how they turned end of life counselling under Obamacare into “death panels”.

    If intelligent people can spin it one way – intelligent people should be able to prevent it.

  10. KJS0ne 10

    I would like to see more of us hold the MSM feet to the fire on the issue of collusion with the Nats. Not a day had passed before the usual suspects on the Herald etc were writing up hit pieces on Winston and Jacinda.

    The people of New Zealand should always give an incoming government a chance, we should hope for a new government’s success – Whether it is left, right or centre – Because ultimately, our future as a nation is tied to the job that these people are doing.

    That’s not to say a government shouldn’t be criticised, quite the opposite – A strong and critical opposition is the cornerstone of a functioning democracy. That’s not to say media shouldn’t be a big part of that – It should. But we need to move past this zeitgeist that political parties are like sports teams and this is our tribe and we just won a war against the other tribe…

    The MSM facilitates this perspective with its bias and sensationalism. I would hate to see us go the way of the USA, where partisan politics has become so entrenched that the Governance of the country has essentially ground to a halt where nothing can be achieved. We are a long way off from that, but I do feel we are moving in that direction.

    So we need to ensure that we are not creating echo chambers, we need to dialogue with the people at Whaleoil and Kiwi blog, if only so that their straw men have a little better resemblance to the actual thing. The same applies in reverse. The Standard must continue and improve on its ability to have a constructive dialogue with conservatives who visit the site.

    Because at the end of the day, whether you are an SJW, a progressive, a liberal, a centrist, a neolib, a conservative, or a Slater – We all want New Zealand to succeed, we just have different ideas about how to go about it.

  11. One Two 11

    Let it all fail..

    Talk of having to defend digital attacks in social/political spheres is the antithesis of ‘democracy / freedom’

    Life sucking digital technologies are the tools which need to be shunned in these spaces

    Turn around, walk back to the organic analogue world of humanity and the environment

    Engaging in ‘anti organic’ digital ‘warfare’ will lead to places darker than the could be anticipated…

    • Molly 11.1

      With you on this topic, One Two.

      Agree with Ad that a counter narrative is required, but we must be careful to not make that the focus of engagement. Face to face conversations with people on an everyday basis, would more likely lead to change.

      However, for those inclined towards social media – it makes sense to do what you can. But – don’t think that it is all that you can do – and most importantly – all that needs to be done.

      (I personally don’t want to engage in adversarial tit-for-tat online with people whose primary intent is to sow discord. I would prefer to put my energy with those who engage with the intention to learn or educate).

    • Incognito 11.2

      Agreed!

    • gsays 11.3

      Spot on, one two.
      My thoughts were along the lines of joining the local community/shared garden, volunteering for a group in your community, helping out at local rest home…

      A discussion face to face is worth far more than another cyber opinion.
      I do not mean don’t engage on line, just that real human relations have far more integrity.

  12. DH 12

    I think people might be overestimating the influence the likes of farrar, twitter etc, have. Trump is a twitter lesson, he’s been using it to bypass the media and failing the popularity game miserably because he doesn’t have the big audience. Farrars site is no threat, he only preaches to the already converted.

    The enemy, or friend, is the media. The opposition only get traction when their words are repeated in the MSM, they’re merely farting in the wind otherwise. You need to keep the MSM onside.

    How to do that … you can hit them where it hurts if it comes to it. In the pocket. They all have shareholders to answer to and a procession of expensive defence actions would get the message across.

    The self-interested lobbyists feed the media ‘cheap’ news, news that costs less than paying journalists & reporters to find news. Make it more expensive by challenging it.

    Individually no-one can take on the media juggernaut but collectively… death by a thousand cuts. You can wear them down.

  13. tracey 13

    Is the RNZ tv channel still on the cards?

  14. Brian Tregaskin 14

    Lets get the ball rolling
    First off we need to understand
    the MSM Hierarchy. Pecking orders of names etc

    • cleangreen 14.1

      Yes brian we need to diemiss all ‘biased’ media types and return our media to a fair balanced media again.

  15. cleangreen 15

    Very true that is Advantage as I recall all this as I signed onto labour in 1999.

    So my submission to the new Government is to quickly seize all treasury documents/accounts,books records and have all seroiusly scrutinised for any “collussion” between the former National Government and big investors/coporations/investors to buy all our assets and examine our financial accounts.

    We must leave no stone un-turned to examine what the past administration actually got up to while we were kept in the dark.

    Are there more “Saudi Arabia” type ‘sheep deals’ bribery going on for nine years also, or any more $11.7 billion holes?????

  16. Siobhan 16

    http://observer.com/2016/12/hillary-clinton-ruled-politics-twitter-in-2016/

    So Hillary ‘Won’ on Twitter…and lost the election to a giant orange moron.

    Don’t believe the hype…clearly those inclined that way should be on Twitter, it is another tool ofcourse, but Twitter is no different from the MSM, both mediums are a little overconfident in their influence as has been ‘proved’ by both the UK and US elections….elections are won and lost on the state of peoples lives and the credibility of Political Leaders…the proof is in the pudding.

    and a word of caution from the Arab Spring..

    “But then “the euphoria faded, we failed to build consensus and the political struggle led to intense polarisation,” said Ghonmin at a recent Ted talk. Social media quickly became a battlefield of misinformation, rumours and trolls – “the same tool that united us to topple dictators eventually tore us apart,” he said.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/25/egypt-5-years-on-was-it-ever-a-social-media-revolution

    • Incognito 16.1

      Thanks for the link to the article in the Guardian, which is very interesting. The situation in Egypt was more extreme than in little old New Zealand but the same principles apply and the same warnings; we need to learn from other people’s mistakes or we’re bound to make them ourselves.

  17. halfcrown 17

    I have seen this morning via Facebook the shit campaign gathering momentum about Peters with no seats deciding who is the government. with crap by the likes of Prebble A timely reminder to these dicks about MMP and how English and Key and the corrupt National government gerrymandered the last two or three elections that allowed them to get that self-seeking turd called Dung in Ohariu and Rimmer in Remuera.
    This enabled English and Key with the courtesy of Dung and Rimmer to hock off the power companies to their spiv mates. Oh, I forgot “Mum & Dad Investors” didn’t say which countries the “Mum & Dad Investors” lived in though. This was something the majority of New Zealanders were against, National managed to sell off the power companies because through their corrupt manipulation of the MMP system they were the government. The majority of New Zealanders wanted MMP modified but was refused by National as it had worked very well in their favour up to now.
    This is the type of counter-argument, sorry the truth that needs to get out there digitally

    • Psych nurse 17.1

      The answer to media assassination is simple, pick your own tame journalists, feed them alone information and sideline the Hoskings,Gowers et al. Thats what National obviously did.

  18. halfcrown 18

    I like the picture Did not realise that you could have three arsoles.

  19. Philg 19

    Shakedown at RNZ? They can change the brand now to Radio Labour as National Radio is no longer apt. 😊 Lol.

    • cleangreen 19.1

      100% PhilG,

      The “Radio National ” was Steven Joyce’s idea so we need to remove the words ‘National’ now as soon as Labour can do it.

      We want all vestiges of the slime the National party have left around to be gone by ‘lunchtime.’ please Jacinda/Winston and James.

      Radio NZ regional is another handle we could use for regional services as in HB/Gisborne recently we recieved a letter from radio NZ that we now had no regional reporter so Labour must restore regional reporting now please as we are being disrimated against.
      Here is the letter we got back from George Bignell OIA “co-ordinator.”.

      October 13, 2017

      Radio NZ.
      21st October 2017.
      Dear ………….
      I write in response to your request “how the regional reporting structure of the Radio NZ broadcasting services now are different to the way the operations serviced the regions formerly.”

      I can advise that RNZ does not hold any specific information in this regard that we can supply to you. To answer your question, apart from the relocation of one reporting position from our Queenstown office to our Dunedin office, there has been no recent changes to our regional reporting structure.

      The Hawkes Bay regional reporting position is currently vacant and Radio New Zealand will look to fill that position in the near future.

      We trust this of assistance to you.

      Yours sincerely
      George Bignell
      OIA Inquiries Coordinator
      Radio NZ.

      • cleangreen 19.1.1

        We sent that request for an Offcial Information Act request on 7th September 2017 and only recieved this response aove yesterday 20th October 2017 or 44 days after we placed the OIA request and the law says we should have recieved the reply less than 20 working days after they recieved the request which was confirmed recieved 7th September 2017.

        Not good enough Radio NZ. Pull up your socks now!!!!!

        As there is a new sherriff in town now called ‘Jacinda.’

  20. CHCOff 20

    In my view the Government partys should approach it’s term as the first one of 3 or 4.

    Band aids on alot of areas to stop them going further backwards, and concentrated focus on a few bold initiatives to start progress going forward in a different overall direction than the current status quo, which will have the most understandable effects for the general population – that may mean they are not the most ideal structural changes that the govt. would ideally like to start with, but that they are in a pragmatic political sense to what the lay of the land is.

    Methodical and efficient application in most things, is generally a process that requires a good dose of patience to start with in building up the requisite applicable skill, and while it is true learning from mistakes often has merit to the process, it is best to learn from that aspect of the process with the same fundamentals on a small scale rather than a large.

    As to raging culture wars in media, most people are not interested and will not serve the purpose of the new government to engage in them for unlike the previous stream of sideshows in the last regime, they will not be for the overall govt’s public credit of business as usual.

  21. barry 21

    I know that Labour wants to be relentlessly positive, but we should popularise phrases like “innumerate Stephen Joyce” & “Lying Bill English”. They sacrificed their credibility to stop Labour’s momentum and it worked for them, but there has to be a cost.

    • david 21.1

      Don’t worry Barry. Relentless positive was just abandoned. It’s doom and gloom and they did it.

  22. david 22

    I don’t think blogs or twitter makes any difference. You don’t change minds there. In NZ it’s the MSM who are suspectible to agenda setting.

    Don’t worry you have many friends there. But eventually they will turn on you. Remember, John Campbell turned on Helen Clark because she wasn’t left wing enough (corngate).

    [lprent: Nope. But I suspect you are merely a stupid troll trying to play games.

    Prove that you aren’t by providing a timeline, John Campbell’s political preference, and the ministers affected. Then explain exactly why you are wrong and apologize for lying.

    Otherwise you won’t get out the permanent ban I just imposed. I don’t like stupidity in our trolls. ]

    • cleangreen 22.1

      Natz troll watch David is a name we need to keep on our register now.

      Go back to your tory right wing paymasters David.

    • david 22.2

      That’s silly. John Campbell’s political preferences is clear as Mike Hoskins’. There is nothing wrong with that. John is a nice personable bloke. If you are denying he is left wing, you are disavowing the handwringing on this blog and TheDailyblog that happened when he was sacked.
      “Some Campbell Live staff believe that is because the show’s liberal focus – and Campbell’s heroic status among some on the left – clashes with its bosses’ political outlook.”

      Do you not remember Corngate? Nicky Hager wrote the book, Seeds of Distrust.
      Where Helen Clark called him a sanctimonus little creep.
      Short Memories.

      en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corngate
      thestandard.org.nz/john-campbell-returns/
      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11430252

  23. Whispering Kate 23

    I’ve done my bit with the Herald yet again – I gave it up 4 years ago and was offered a 5 week free trial again – I have been binning it into the recyle right away – utter tripe and shite the entire way through.

    I have given the poor guy on the phone such an ear bashing and now I am going to put it into email to the rag itself and cc’ing it to the Editor in Chief. It’s not only the ghastly editorial content and its utterly biased views and propoganda, plus leader writers who lie and spin for the Nats but its obviously geared entirely for the 2% of kiwis who have big incomes and love to party. The Real Estate supplement is full of millionaire plus homes and land and the Canvas supplement has models in clothing at least $400 a piece, that is $400 for the skirt, $400 for the top and $300 at least for the shoes which even a sensible middle class person would never purchase. The food part of the Canvas features high end restaurants etc., expensive cuts of meat and all the other luxury high end items that very few of us could buy even if we wanted to.

    Who does the Herald think is going to read this stuff – certainly not the majority of citizens paddling so hard to keep their heads above water. Christ on a bike that is the last time, and I repeat that, the last time I ever attempt to read a NZ Herald again.

    This new fledgling Government will need every help it can get to counter this malevolent evil vicious right wing especially now it is in opposition. If all the social media offered is as nasty as the Herald its a terrible indictment of the rightwing nasties in this country we have.

    • cleangreen 23.1

      We too have had MSM resistance from all media including RNZ for five years now and call for labour to set new media standards to force all media to cover regional community issues comunities came forward with and keep a complaints registery of complaints from comunity who are unable to get their issues covered by the MSM.

      The current “Standards Authority” does not respond to oue complaints after we complained of our issues expressed for media coverage were ignored by the media now.

      Any NZ Broadcasting funds given to these media outlets must then be reclaimed from these errant media companies and be backdated.

    • JC 23.2

      Apologies to quote you WK, and or mess with your post. But You’re Totally on the money, as they say..

      “its utterly biased views and propaganda, plus lead writers who lie and spin for the Nats but its obviously geared entirely for the 2% of kiwis who have big incomes and love to party. The Real Estate supplement is full of millionaire plus homes and land and the Canvas supplement has models in clothing at least $400 a piece, that is $400 for the skirt, $400 for the top”

      With:

      Ms Adams said the findings should be treated with a high degree of caution, as the survey did not have consistent comparisons from country to country.

      “They’re not comparing apples with apples and to suggest that is our number of homeless is quite wrong.”

      She said government estimates were that the number was closer to 4000.

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/335556/nz-tops-list-of-developed-countries-with-most-homeless

      Totally agree that “we need every help to counter this malevolent evil vicious right wing especially now it i”s in opposition. If all the social media offered is as nasty as the Herald its a terrible indictment of the rightwing nasties in this country we have.”

    • DH 23.3

      I expect the Herald has a good idea on who reads what Kate. Since going online the press have had an enormously powerful marketing tool called a page view counter. It really is a marketers dream, they get highly accurate data on what people will read and what they won’t.

      I’ll wager that when an event becomes news people keep following it no matter how inane or petty the followup news snippets might be. That could be why they hound a subject to death, they probably don’t kill a story until the page views start tapering off.

      I think if people want to beat the media we first need to understand them. They are quite complex, there’s no single explanation for why they behave as they do. I’d imagine they promote and defend the housing market because the real estate industry pays them a great deal of money in advertising. With someone like Winston Peters, on the other hand, there’s possibly both malice and page views.

  24. Brokenback 24

    I have posted several times post-election to this subject.

    My sincere hope that is that there is some very serious discussion going on as we “speak” , into the nuts and bolts of tri-party coalition mangement team that has at the top of it’s agenda ” Management of Public perception” .
    Quote:
    “Exceltium, Senate, Saunders Unsworth and all the other Dark Arts practitioners will continue their dedicated work to turn stories into nightmares for the most inexperienced Cabinet we have seen in my lifetime. They will do so legally, and they are paid for results.”

    The key to any strategy has to be in the last sentence.

    Follow the money .
    We’re faced with a spin machine that Goebel’s would have given both right & left testicles for BUT it must be incredibly expensive to run and therefore must also have a clearly discernible money trail.
    As I’ve said previously , the PM has immense power of search & surveillance and for me it will be the measure of Jacinda ‘s capability as a leader whether or not she chooses to use the tainted tools to all our advantage

  25. Patricia Bremner 25

    We do have to face that the right are entrenched. However, there are some who are beginning to wonder.

    We do not win them to our cause without giving them a hook to hang on.

    Where are your grandchildren going to live? What will their lives be like?

    Will they have shorter lives because of pollution? Climate change? Wars? Food shortages? Climate caused pests (mozzies)? Illnesses? Lack of opportunity to work?

    What can we do about that to leave the world able to renew itself for them?

    What do we need to live? What is really important?

    When they say People or Family, that is the chance to say,

    How much of today did you spend with people/family?

    How much was spent on technology, money, travel, work. Is it worth it?

    Conversations that need to be had.

  26. greywarshark 26

    We have to be alert to what is going on and take care that we don’t do the left a disadvantage, even by accident.

    For instance Ad your “I am not proposing a hive mind ” which you then explained with negative connotation. But Scoop have used the term Hive Mind for a project which it ran before the election, as a sort of focus group to ascertain attitudes to chosen subjects. So using the term elsewhere only dirties and confuses the name they have chosen as a brand for their opinion-seeking group.

    I don’t know how many of us could bear the brunt of the technicolour yawns from Whale Oil and even Kiwiblog. (That was a descriptive Oz term in the 1970s.)
    Someone reporting verbatim what they have said could be the focus of twitter and other outlets. And trying to keep cool as the RWs do when they come here and act the part of superior Headmasters, would be wise. How would the twitter comments sound if picked up and repeated,

  27. Muttonbird 27

    I’m doing my bit. But working people with families have limited time for this, or any, kind of activism.

  28. carlite 28

    It’s a romantic notion – the idea of waging a digital war against the opposition by going head-to-head on their platforms and in their articles. However, that’s all it is – romantic; and is actually counterproductive.

    If there is one thing the wider-left need to understand about digital marketing, it’s that the best way to suppress an article you disagree with is to not comment it or share it or do anything with it at all.

    You can write the most convincing rebuttal ever written about an article or opinion but the algorithms don’t care… a comment is a comment, and a react is a react and it will, perversely, count towards the article’s popularity and success.

    The best thing you can actually do is ignore them and not take part. Post more articles, comments and the likes on blogs and sites you like. Comment and react to articles you think show the left in a positive light, but do not touch the others, tempting as it may be.

    Remember – nobody who is able to be convinced of alternative views reads the comments. You and I may enjoy the rough-and-tumble, but to the majority of the citizenry, comments sections are the gutters of the media and they are ignored. You are not going to convince anybody there that they are wrong – because they have come to the ‘fight’ with just as much conviction as you do. The best thing you can do is leave it alone and not give the article your attention.

    • Ad 28.1

      Great comment.

      You favour fresh content.

      The challenge from your perspective would then alter to getting more outstanding writers who are informed both by the events of the day and by the intent of policy.

    • Philg 28.2

      +1 Carlite. The media has become the message. This election was a fine example of that. Winston was right in showing distain /contempt for the current shoddy/shabby fake journalism we are witnessing. Very concerning, and imo the biggest issue facing us. Looking forward to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Lol

  29. greywarshark 29

    Perhaps we need forums on TS where people who follow a particular sector or interest could go to be informed and inform of the latest. There would be a major tag. with different posts under, so you would pick the forum, and then look for the latest posts.

    Under business, I would be interested in micro business – I think that is ones with 5 or less employees. I have been hearing complaints about the oppressive bureaucracy that is being suffered. The observation is that big business lobbies government and gets away with not even installing basics, while the small business is likely to be ordered to instal excessive plant.

    The example was a very large department store with no toilets, compared to a new very small restaurant that was being asked to put three, now down to two. One would presumably have wheelchair access, and the other would be the usual fitting and size. The idea that hundreds of people, thousands, would not have need to visit a toilet or their children while in the store, is unlikely. The little business is unfairly regulated was the conclusion and it seems so when looking at the example referred to.

  30. Peter WIlson 30

    That’s the best thing I’ve read on The Standard in over three years, and perhaps my first comment on the site in about that long as well.

    It needs to be done.

  31. Venezia 31

    There is much to consider in the comments here. I must say the MSM have done a great job convincing people that National “won” the election, and that it is quite “unfair” that the three parties to the coalition are the “losers”, and/or that MMP should be changed for these reasons. I have read many comments reflecting these ideas online today.
    More disturbing is the misogyny, and it reads like a repeat of the attacks on Helen Clark.

  32. RTM 32

    Some National Party supporter are very angry at the country’s new government. Calls for the assassination of Winston Peters have been appearing on social media and at a popular pro-Nats blog: http://readingthemaps.blogspot.co.nz/2017/10/fomenting-happy-murder.html

  33. Brian Tregaskin 33

    here we go sigh!!!!!
    Sunday Star Times (Fairfax in drag) front page today as predicted

    response:-
    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/10/james-shaw-says-kermadec-ocean-sanctuary-still-on-the-table.html

  34. greywarshark 34

    On thinking about this Ad it seems to me that there needs to be some sort of integration amongst an alert in-group using social media that should be discussed off the blog.

  35. greywarshark 35

    Chris Trotter is echoing the same message Ad.

    Every progressive New Zealander who understands the magnitude of the fight which Peters’, Ardern’s and Shaw’s decision to pursue “real change” has made inevitable, must be prepared to come to the aid of the three parties – Labour, NZ First and the Greens – which have committed themselves to fulfilling the hopes and dreams of the 50.4 percent of the New Zealand electorate who voted for them.

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