TV3 and the manufacturing of a political narrative

Written By: - Date published: 11:06 am, May 27th, 2014 - 97 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, labour, tv - Tags: ,

Last night on 3 News, Paddy Gower ran an astounding story accusing David Cunliffe of engaging in “dog whistle” politics on immigration.

The cuts Gower used showed Cunliffe saying two things. Firstly that it would take 80 percent of our new housing supply just to accommodate this year’s migrants and National is doing nothing, and secondly that Labour reckons immigration should be at a steady moderate level (rather than erratically jumping from zero to 40,000 within a year) so that the country’s housing, schools and hospitals can cope.

The statements are unremarkable.  The first is a statement of fact, basically mathematics, and highlights the Government’s failure to align immigration levels and an increase to the housing stock.  As for the second it’s hard to understand who could be upset.  It sounds like something that Peter Dunne on steroids would say.

The issue is obvious. In Auckland and Christchurch we have a housing crisis. The symptoms are clear but the solution is politically really difficult. Immigration flows are just one factor in this crisis, and proposed Immigration policy changes are a minor factor in Labour’s response.

Yet Paddy Gower has claimed that “Labour leader David Cunliffe has taken his hardest line yet against immigrants, blaming them for rising house prices.”

Well he hasn’t. There is no way you can reconcile this claim with the many statements David has made on housing policy and on immigration policy.

Labour’s policies in the area are clear. Local speculators will face a comprehensive capital gains tax, offshore speculators will be stopped and there is a significant building programme planned involving 100,000 new affordable homes over ten years.

So what’s driving this story? Why, it’s Patrick Gower of course.

The story first emerged just after the Budget when Gower asked David Cunliffe on The Nation whether Labour thought immigration was having an impact on the housing market.  This was Gower’s angle, not Labour’s.  Cunliffe responded that Labour would manage the immigration system to ensure immigration flows are counter-cyclical, that is when numbers are declining restrictions are loosened and when numbers are increasing the brakes are applied so that a “sweet spot” level is achieved.

Interestingly, Gower used the phrase “dog whistle” a few times during that interview but never in relation to Labour’s immigration policy.  David Cunliffe said then basically the same things about immigration that he said yesterday but the dog whistle allegation was not made.  I wonder why not?

Cut to yesterday, when Gower posted a blog on the 3 News website calling on Labour to go hard on immigration:

Labour still has a chance. Cunliffe is performing better. National is weak on one of the big issues – housing.

But it is still time for Labour to hit the panic button.

It may need to look at going harder on the immigration issue – there is no time to be nuanced when you are on 29.5 percent.

Surprise, surprise, Gower approaches David Cunliffe for comment on immigration with a story pre-written in his mind and turns innocuous answers into an outrageous example of dog whistle politics.

Gower has a pattern of writing his stories before his interviews then cutting to fit his narrative.  It’s an obvious attempt to influence the political discourse and it’s good for ratings.

He should stick to reporting the facts.  And my fellow lefties who were excitedly calling Cunliffe a xenophobe last night after watching his piece should perhaps try to be a little less naïve.

97 comments on “TV3 and the manufacturing of a political narrative”

  1. Olwyn 1

    Something an actual journalist would look into is the claim that National’s new housing plan will be taken up by 80% with new migrants. An increase in migration was in fact mentioned in the budget, so the housing plan looks as if it might add up to giving with one hand and taking with the other – claiming to “address the housing crisis” while in fact producing a few more poker chips for the players who are already knee-deep in the game.

    • Brendon Harre 1.1

      There is a suspicion down here in Canterbury that the government did not want to create dozens of green field subdivisions in its Christchurch Housing Accord like they did in Auckland with its 30,000 new sections in Special Housing Areas because that might have caused new section and house prices to fall.

      Christchurch’s housing accord consisted of 180 new social needs houses. Pathetic given the need down here.

      Christchurch is one third the size of Auckland, lost a large number of houses in the quakes, has the highest rate of rent price increases in the country and pre-quakes had just as strong population growth as Auckland in percentage terms. Yet we get 180 social houses, not 10,000 new sections which our size and situation indicates we should have…

      So I have had the thought that Nationals housing policy is about rewarding a few developers in Auckland.

      Whatever it is about, it is not about making new or existing houses cheaper. Key is extremely weak on housing. See him in Parliament trying to defend National’s housing policy here http://www.inthehouse.co.nz/video/33088 . MSM should be following up on this rather than trying to create their own stories.

      I am definitely voting for 10,000 affordable houses a year that Labour/Greens are offering. Especially if they throw in a decent transport system to go with the new KiwiBuilds.

      On the subject of Gower he looks weird and behaves even weirder. No one should take him seriously.

      • Tracey 1.1.1

        the nzier says the biggest threat to nz economic good times is a housing bust… so dont hold your breath for national to build genuinely affordable homes cos it might reveal the smoke and mirrors.

        joyce smugly yells ” more consents went through” so things are great. but he omits the bit about the mean selling price of each…. bet more than hald arent affordable

        • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.1

          the nzier says the biggest threat to nz economic good times is a housing bust… so dont hold your breath for national to build genuinely affordable homes cos it might reveal the smoke and mirrors.

          QFT

        • NickS 1.1.1.2

          It’s going to bust anyhow, better off controlling the damage now via deflating the housing bubble in a controlled manner than letting it explode when the next financial crisis hits. Along with fixing the parasitic rental issue which is removing people’s disposable income, reducing consumer spending and putting people under increased stress trying to make ends meet.

          • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.2.1

            True but National won’t do that as people who see their house price collapsing tend to get antsy and don’t vote for the party that caused it and they’re fully supportive of the parasites being parasites themselves.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2

        MSM should be following up on this rather than trying to create their own stories.

        The MSM creates their own stories so that they can avoid reporting reality. If they reported what we need to know then nobody would ever vote National and they can’t have that.

        • Tracey 1.1.2.1

          their job is to deliver a profit to their owners. that means they need to attract advertisers.

          my household and house insurer is not for profit. my premiums are way lower than friends… and we have not been hit by big house premiun rises like others.

          it is possible to run successful services without profit motive. its greed that prevents it. banks could work this way too.

  2. Phil 2

    secondly that Labour reckons immigration should be at a steady moderate level (rather than erratically jumping from zero to 40,000 within a year)

    Gross inward migration has been, over the past decade or two, between approximately 50,000 and 70,000 in a year.

    The zero to 40,000 represents the level of net migration (that is: arrivals minus departures). If you want to stop this figure from “bouncing around” then you’re implicitly supporting policies that restrict or limit the ability of New Zealanders to leave the country.

    • mickysavage 2.1

      If you want to stop this figure from “bouncing around” then you’re implicitly supporting policies that restrict or limit the ability of New Zealanders to leave the country.

      Que?

      You are doing a Gower and trying to create a narrative …

      • Phil 2.1.1

        Nothing of the sort.

        You’ve described the problem as being net migration “erratically jumping from zero to 40,000 within a year” and are supporting Labour’s proposal to come up with some kind of steady moderate level.

        Well, we already have (and, according to Cunliffe, Labour will continue to use) policies to maintain reasonably steady inward migration… that’s the 50k-70k a year figure.

        These policies can be moved about from year to year to limit or free up inward migration levels, no doubt. But then you’re stuck with a huge problem: it takes time to figure out how many people are actually leaving.

        Without that information the government is flying blind in trying to maintain a steady net migration level. The outcomes are either (1) you risk increased volatility in the net figure (i.e. this years arrivals policy relies on last years departures information), or (2) you place limits on departures and get your steady net migration figure that way.

        If there is another way you, or DC, or Labour generally, can fix or stabilize net migration, I’d love to hear it. At the moment though, I don’t think it’s a remotely feasible outcome.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1

          The other way is real time reporting of those leaving with a real time adjustment of those allowed to enter.

          So easy when you think about how to do it rather than whinging that it just can’t be done.

          • Phil 2.1.1.1.1

            real time reporting of those leaving with a real time adjustment of those allowed to enter.

            I have already thought about it, and then immediately discounted the possibility: it would mean that on a day to day (or, lets be generous, month to month) basis, potential immigrants to New Zealand would not know whether or not they meet the entry criteria.

            To me, that seems like a totally unacceptable way to treat people that really want to come and live here.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.1.1

              potential immigrants to New Zealand would not know whether or not they meet the entry criteria.

              It’s not a question of them meeting the entry criteria but of them fitting in the quota – which they don’t know when they apply already. Really, nothing changes for the people applying.

      • Matthew Hooton 2.1.2

        What does “trying to create a narrative” mean?
        I keep hearing this phrase from (mainly but not exclusively) the left.
        It sounds like some polsci wank.
        Don’t you just mean “this is something you think that I don’t”?

        • fender 2.1.2.1

          “What does “trying to create a narrative” mean?”

          Could be like that wally with the same name as you that goes on RNZ and claims Cunliffe is “tricky” etc…..

  3. Enough is Enough 3

    It is an election winner.

    Housing is the issue that will get voters out of bed. It is the headlines and we have to capitalise it.

    Stopping foreigners buying our land and houses is an important part of solving the issues. Just go to an auction in Auckland and see who is pushing the prices up.

    If the left does not claim the fertile electoral land -Winston will

  4. Markymark 4

    Cunliffe’s desperation is now just becoming embarrassing and will potentially only hurt Labour’s dwindling chances to win the election, even further.

    His attempt to blame foreigners for economic problems is the oldest trick in the book.

    What is sad is that a Labour party leader now believes that catering to the reactionary rump of provincial New Zealand is what will get him elected. I hate to break it to you, David, but on that score Winston will always be able to out maneuver you in catering to bigots and xenophobes.

    What makes Cunliffe’s positioning on this issue even more farcical is that immigration levels are currently similar to what they were in 2002 under the last Clark govt, which Cunliffe was a Minister.

    Why was high net flows good then, but not good now?

    [lprent: I have answered your later comment on the same topic. You are now on notice as being a probable astroturfing troll. I’d suggest that you engage in discussion/argument rather than acting like a particularly stupid whining child demanding attention from adults. This isn’t the sewer. So lift your standard. Otherwise I will remove your ability to leave comments (and probably again – I seem to remember this particular style from previous elections). ]

    • poem 4.1

      Lol youre in denial Markymark.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.2

      Economic problems? Are you saying the rockstar economy has economic problems? You want to watch your mouth, the Prime Minister says there’s no housing crisis.

      Watch your mouth generally in fact: your lies reveal your low character.

      • anker 4.2.1

        OAB at 4.2 1000+

      • Markymark 4.2.2

        You didn’t answer the question I posed at all, so I’ll repeat it:

        Why is roughly the same flow of immigration bad now, when it was good in 2002?

        I suspect a change of moniker to “One Anonymous Baffoon”would be more apt.

        • lprent 4.2.2.1

          You have a poor memory. Immigration levels in 2002-3 was a major political story and a cause of concern throughout the election campaigns and afterwards. The NZ First party in particular campaigned on it, and I think it got them a substantial boost in their MPs in the house (yep – jumped from 4% in 1999 to 10.3% in 2002).

          It coincided with and probably largely caused a sharp spike in the Auckland house prices at the time. It also had flow on effects into the schools and other social services. (yep)

          I think that having house prices starting to rise across the whole country by 20% is a pretty substantial signal of a housing shortage don’t you?

          From memory, it was the first major issues that Cunliffe had to deal with as a new minister. His job after the 2002 election was to get the immigration levels down to a sustainable level.

          Were you too young in 2002 to read or listen to the political news? You sound like it. Either that or monumentally stupid.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 4.2.2.2

          Lprent is being charitable. I don’t think you’re stupid, although you may be young. I think you are of low character.

          For example, every single inference in your comment doesn’t turn out to be false by sheer coincidence. Watch your mouth.

    • seeker 4.3

      Markymark

      Here is the transcript of what David Cunliffe actually said to Gower on The Nation a couple of weeks ago,as you don’t appear to have watched the link mickeysavage gave you to the interview.

      http://www.3news.co.nz/Interview-David-Cunliffe/tabid/1348/articleID/344648/Default.aspx

      It is a recorded FACT not a spun fiction that Gower has tried to fabricate yet again. Please read or watch so you don’t keep repeating fiction and sound like the great uninformed, brainwashed, dark blue coloured, selfish dunces, who, unfortunately, inhabit our wonderful country.

      • Tracey 4.3.1

        stop responding to helpful righties pretending to help labour… their heads will explode

    • Draco T Bastard 4.4

      I hate to break it to you, David, but on that score Winston will always be able to out maneuver you in catering to bigots and xenophobes.

      Looking after those already here is neither bigoted nor xenophobic. It is simply rational and necessary action.

      What is sad is that a Labour party leader now believes that catering to the reactionary rump of provincial New Zealand is what will get him elected.

      It appears that you’re the reactionary rump:

      A 3News poll found 62.4 per cent wanted restrictions.

      NZ First voters felt the strongest, with 84.3 per cent backing restrictions, against 67.8 per cent of Labour supporters, 58.2 per cent of Green Party voters and 59.3 per cent of National supporters.

  5. Ant 5

    No big deal in putting NZ citizens and permanent residents ahead of foreign nationals.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1

      Is that how you see it? Sad.

      If population grows faster than infrastructure problems multiply. Government is about planning. Please try and see past your bigotry to where the problem is.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        I’m wondering why you have a problem with what Ant said. NZ’s economy really is for NZers and not foreign nationals.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.1

          Is that what the problem is? That they’re foreign? Clearly, the concept of immigration is foreign to your argument.

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.1.1

            Immigration needs to be controlled so that we don’t make things worse for those already here.

  6. cricklewood 6

    I understand that high net migration puts pressure on housing stock but how do you control immigration inflow?
    Less highly skilled migrants? Restrict inflow from pacific countries? Tighten up family visas? Either way if people stop leaving and nz citizens flood back from aussie its not a good solution.
    The only way to address housing is to build more of it. Anything else is winston territory….

    • Tracey 6.1

      half our migrants are in the skilled category. mr liu came under business and then did nothing of what he said he would do… but now he has his citizenship we are stuck with him.

      anyone know the full breakdown by category

  7. Craig Glen Eden 7

    Gower’s full of shit this is a poor attempt to try and make Cunliffe look desperate. The right can see a Labour/Green/NZ first Government and the housing situation has them hooked with their own corruption.The left just need to stick together, continue working hard and we stand every chance of getting rid of this corrupt bunch.

  8. Nick K 8

    Yes, it’s the media’s fault.

    Seriously people, is that the best you can come up with?

    • framu 8.1

      didnt realise that TV3 and gower was “the media”

      way to go right past the point there nick

      do you think that a journo inventing news stories to fit their own pre-ordained narrative is a good or bad thing?

    • NickS 8.2

      🙄

      Because Gower’s lies are so totes okay…

  9. fender 9

    Take it easy on wee Paddy, he’s pretty thick but at least he’s learnt a new term, but he just couldn’t wait to use it.

    With the election coming up the nasty Nat’s will engage in some serious beneficiary bashing and wee Paddy will have many chances to use his new term in the correct context.

  10. blue leopard 10

    What exactly is a dogwhistle in politics?

    Seriously, what is a dogwhistle, and how is it being applied by Cunliffe in this context?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog-whistle_politics

    The above link is pretty brief, however it seems to say that there needs to be a coded or indirect message going on that appeals to, for example, a racist section of the population.

    What was coded, indirect or underhand in what Mr Cunliffe said?

    I guess any limits set on immigration could appeal to someone with racist views – if they believed that a certain race would be stopped from coming into the country – did Mr Cunliffe imply he was going to single out a certain race when moderating the numbers of immigrants? Therefore how can a politician talk about immigrant numbers at all without being accused of ‘dogwhistling’ or is what Paddy Gower really saying is that immigration levels are now a ‘no-go’ area that politicians must not speak about?

    i.e. How would a politician speak about problems occurring due to large jumps in immigration numbers without this accusation being flung at them?

    • weizguy 10.1

      The code was obvious from the piece – Paddy was speaking over the top of what looked like hidden video of asians bidding for houses at auctions.

      Yellow Peril.

      • blue leopard 10.1.1

        So is it really that Paddy did a dogwhistle by playing such pictures and now he is holding Cunliffe to account for his own (Gower’s) actions?

        p.s I still don’t quite ‘get’ how a politician can address problems that may be arising from overseas issues such as overseas investment/immigrant patterns without being accused of ‘dogwhistling’.

        • Olwyn 10.1.1.1

          Yes I was bewildered by the use of “dog whistle” too. I assumed it must have gone the way of “begging the question,” and been given a new meaning by some journalists.

          • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1.1

            Yep. The RWNJs have been actively changing the meaning of words and phrases for years now through their dominance of the MSM.

  11. weizguy 11

    I’m wondering when someone is going to point out to the public that not only did Paddy imply that Cunliffe was racist, he implied that everyone who was polled and wanted immigration restricted was also racist. One suspects this is why he didn’t explain what a dog whistle is – I don’t think “only the racists can hear it” would have gone down well with his viewership.

    • blue leopard 11.1

      +1 [although I have no doubt that there is structural racism in this country after recently reading in-depth reports on poverty and who is most in poverty]

      …also, how is it racist when a ‘race’ isn’t singled out? Perhaps ‘immigrantist’ would be more accurate, if anything….

    • Blue 11.2

      I don’t think its racist at all, I think it’s xenophobic. It’s taking the worst aspects of Winston and trying to frame it in another light. Desperate stuff.

      • blue leopard 11.2.1

        Yes, xenophobia is the word I was searching for.

        How does a politician address the issue of any negative effects of bringing people into the country without being called xenophobic? Or being accused of being ‘like Winston’

        Or is noone allowed to address such issues?

        Or is ‘desperate’ , ‘dogwhistling’ or ‘xenophobia’ simply the words of those who are not affected by this issue and/or want National to stay in?

        Perhaps Labour should just force all NZ employers to provide wages to the level that the wealthy people being let into this country and who are buying up more than one property have enjoyed? In this way remove these new arrivals’ competitive advantage.

        Or perhaps Labour could simply raise taxes to a point where they can afford to address the problem in other – less ‘xenophobic’ ways?

        Or perhaps Labour could supply the option they have suggested and the above options and allow all New Zealanders to choose which one they consider is most effective and least damaging?

  12. blue leopard 12

    Interesting to note in that Wikipedia article I linked to above (comment 10) that the term ‘dogwhistle’ was first formulated in response to Textor-Crosby’s strategies.

    Isn’t Textor-Crosby the current advisers of the National party?

    They are well known* to employ underhand techniques. Why did National choose such morally bankrupt advisers?

    *Google all the elections they have been involved in; “Textor Crosby + Howard”, …or + “Cameron” …or + “[the name of that white haired git mayor of London]”…but not so very many critical mainstream articles coming from NZ and National’s connection because our mainstream media don’t do that much critiquing of those currently in power.

    • Tracey 12.1

      john banks would never be in cahoots with a party employing underhand tactics cos he is full right up on honesty and integrity. so you must be wrong.

  13. captain hook 13

    who is this gower guy. looks like I am going to have to watch tv3 to find out. but in the final washup gower will be just another paid flack doing his masters bidding. the same as gluon spineless and the rest of the jellyfish that national finds useful to them.

  14. Rosie 14

    This Patrick Gower – anti Cunliffe thing has been going on for so long. Just why does he do his best to destroy Cunliffe? What’s with the personal agenda?

    Is it something like this?

    PM: “Patrick, we loaned your company 35 mil and I won’t let you forget it. You’re mine now and you need to make me look good”

    Gower: “Yes Boss, anything you say”

    And Dai Henwoods’ right. Gower looks like a teenage undertaker.

  15. gobsmacked 15

    Labour have questions in the House today about the Sanil Kumar case (the man who died after he was sent back to Fiji).

    It’s their job to join some dots, not just allow Gower (or Key) to frame the story. Ditto asylum-seekers, refugees, etc. When Key says “Look out, scary boat people!” it’s Labour’s job to call him on the real dog-whistle.

    Nikki Kaye, the relevant Minister, commented on the Kumar case that NZ has limited resources and immigration decisions are taken accordingly. That’s not a controversial statement in itself – it’s stating the obvious. But how is it framed? That’s down to smart communication, and a caucus working in tandem.

    “Does the PM agree with his Minister?” should be the first thing Labour ask. “And if so … ”

    Don’t be feebly defensive (i.e. “No, we’re not racist”) but bloody well counter-attack. Hard.

  16. gobsmacked 16

    And right on cue, Key acts the wanker in Parliament, brazenly lying in his attacks on Cunliffe. A couple of good responses from Cunliffe, now it needs sustained follow-up. It’s predictably Rovian stuff from National (i.e. accuse your opponents of your own sins), Labour should respond robustly.

    “If National loves immigrants from the Pacific islands so much, why do they send them back?” etc.

  17. Tracey 17

    john banks media manager for his 2010 mayoralty is a former tv3 journalist. I hope he never displayed right leaning tendencies before leaving.

  18. Ad 18

    Problem with this framing is neither Gower nor any other commentator would get so much as a sniff at “forming the narrative” if Labour had a strong one to start with.

    Nature abhors a vacuum, and while vacuum might be too strong a word for it, the last great policy launch from Labour that seized the public imagination was a while ago. It’s time to fill the vacuum and write the narrative the way they want it, or continue to have it written for them.

    It was a good start, but housing alone won’t turn popular opinion. The media’s appetite for stories is huge in election year, and they need fresh prodduct or they will keep making up their own. Either launch fresh ones very soon, or Cunliffe and his team are going to continue to be trapped again into over-extending this “housing narrative” into odd little policy curliques like the link to immigration yesterday.

    Also missing is the art of humour and repartee; Shane Jones underlined policy with telegenic lines that travelled for days sometimes weeks. Give Cunliffe some comedic lines – he’s starting to sound positively Anglican dealing with Gower.

  19. Katherine 19

    Micky Savage – can you encourage David Cunliffe to release a statement to the effect that he was set up by Gower and/or confirm his position that he is not trying to blame immigrants for house pricing as last night on Twitter a number of potential Labour voters on my timeline were furious with DC and (rather studpidly) believed what Gower was trying to spin. Many tweeted DC directly to ask for clarification. He has not yet replied. Would be a good idea if he did me thinks….. then said angry people may finally realise they should no longer believe all the spin the msm is spewing forth.
    Cheers

    • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1

      Fuck that.

      The appropriate course of action is that you complain to Tv3 about their bias and false reporting, and encourage your friends to do the same.

      Why let Gower dictate the agenda?

      • Tracey 19.1.1

        why not do both.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1.1.1

          Because there are more right wing shills making up lies to respond to than there are minutes in the day. The only sensible response is a formal complaint to Tv3, and RNZ for Espiner’s low performance this morning for that matter. Not by Cunliffe either.

          He called Espiner out on his unprofessional gobshite this morning; that was good to hear.

          • Katherine 19.1.1.1.1

            OAB;
            I’m not talking about replying to right wing shills, I’m talking about replying to potential Labour voters who see this interview as yet another nail in the coffin as to why they don’t like or want to vote for DC, because once again the message has been distorted.
            Why not reply to them? Your suggestion only serves to ignore a situation that could be repaired.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1.1.1.1.1

              The whole point of right wing shill attacks is to keep Cunliffe busy chasing them. It’s a fool’s errand. It’s up to wiser heads on the left to calm our media-addled comrades rather than expecting the leaders to do everything.

              “If he is busy, tire him out.” Sun Tzu.

            • mickysavage 19.1.1.1.1.2

              Katherine I can assure you that Cunliffe is fuming at this. Will see if I can get him to comment.

              • Katherine

                Cheers. I have laid a formal complaint already with OMSA. And, as OAB above suggests, so should others – obviously the more the merrier. However, there are many that would consider a direct reply from DC – even if it was on Twitter – an important response that shows he is connecting with ordinary voters and cares enough to allay their fears.

              • gobsmacked

                When National don’t like something on the 6 pm news, their response is to spend the rest of the evening countering it. Their staffers, bloggers, tweeters, phone calls to journos (AKA “my sources tell me …”), the whole machine, full throttle, non stop. By the next morning, the papers and breakfast shows are reporting the rebuttal – so National win.

                When Labour don’t like something on the 6 pm news, they go into work the next morning and prepare a press release. By which time they’ve already lost.

                It’s about instant rebuttal, monitoring the media 24/7, all outlets, all the time. This is Campaigning 101 in the modern world.

                But Labour are wedded to the “office” version of work, where things are done to their timetable, and you go home at the end of the shift. That luxury ended when they left government in 2008, and they still haven’t adjusted. That’s why they lose, day in, day out, night in, night out.

                There’s no secret here, it’s just professionals vs amateurs. The professionals are winning. I would expect a hungry and smart campaign to demolish Gower’s garbage within minutes hour of the broadcast. Sadly, Labour are neither very hungry, nor very smart.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  The professionals cannot muster the same levels of polling they enjoyed three years ago. Take heart 🙂

                • mickysavage

                  I am sure it is not a case of the “Office” version of work. It is rather a case of the unequal division of resources. The right clearly has resources that we could only dream of having …

                  • gobsmacked

                    Sorry, MickeyS, that won’t wash.

                    The Greens dream of Labour’s resources. But they do much better with what they have.

                    • mickysavage

                      I was referring to Farrar and Slater and the research that provides them with stories. Maybe I am concentrating too much on social media …

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    They’ll need them. You have the policy advantage. Oh, and the track-record advantage and the smaller amygdala advantage 😈

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    The right clearly has resources that we could only dream of having …

                    That’s a load of bollocks. It shows that you, along with pretty much every other person on the left, have forgotten why we have parties. A lot of people with a small amount each has more than a small amount of people with a lot.

                • Kiwiri

                  “There’s no secret here, it’s just professionals vs amateurs. The professionals are winning.”

                  Yup. Just the beginning of a professional and generously funded Nats machine that is on the roll, with the media that has been bought and in the Nats’ pocket.

                  Wait till Nats and the media get on to publicising Labour’s policy of pushing out the retirement age. Some really long nails are being sharpened and the ‘super’ coffin being prepared for Cunliffe and Labour.

                  • gobsmacked

                    The well-funded Nats machine was challenged and defeated by people who relied on their brains and their will to win. Names like Clark, Simpson, Cullen etc.

                    It is a given that the playing field isn’t level. So Labour have to work twice as hard, twice as smart.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Which isn’t hard when you consider Hodson & Busseri 2012 😀

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    How about the not being able to buy a house policy? Some really long nails are being sharpened and the ‘housing’ coffin being prepared for Key and Oravida. Sorry, National.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Do you guys not already have your right wing shill attack strategy sorted? Either kick them in the nuts during the interview or move on. Unless you enjoy spending all day putting out fires I suppose.

  20. gobsmacked 20

    Here’s a simple example, from Stuff:

    Prime Minister John Key says that under Labour’s proposed immigration policy, he and his wife would not be in New Zealand.

    Key’s parents were from Austria and Britain and wife Bronagh’s parents were Irish.

    “Under David Cunliffe, I wouldn’t be here and Bronagh wouldn’t be here,” Key said.

    A blatant lie. Shameless. And he said it this morning, so it’s all over the media today.

    Any response from Labour? Has Key been called on it, put in his place by simple facts? I haven’t seen one, but links welcome.

    • mickysavage 20.1

      You know gobsmacked it is hard to know what to say sometimes. The statement is an obvious lie. If Labour responds then we get into a “yes you did no we didn’t” situation and the public then turns off.

      The intent is to detract attention away from the housing crisis. Sometimes the best thing to do is stick to the issue.

      • Tracey 20.1.1

        so bring it back to point… nzier are clear this govt needs high property prices cos without them the bottom falls out.

        less than 30 second soundbite right there.

    • KJT 20.2

      Pretty good argument from Key proving the point, that we should restrict immigration. 🙂

    • Tracey 20.3

      keys mum was a refugee surely. under key his own mother wouldnt have been allowed in. she came on a boat, right?

  21. captain hook 21

    Its pretty sad when we have children masquerading as adults and getting paid large to tell lies for their political masters.
    Listening to whingeing whining gluon spineless on Radio New Zealand is just testament to the infantilism that pervades the whole country.
    onesies twosies yeah nah fuck off.

  22. KJT 22

    Time immigration policy was changed from the present settings, which are designed to keep wages down, speculative housing and land high, and allow in yet more wealthy crooks!

    Especially when employers, who cannot be bothered training or paying their employees, are able to sidestep it by bleating to the immigration department about the lack of skilled workers.

    While skilled workers from New Zealand have left for Australia, Singapore, and other countries, that value them.

    Refugees are much more committed and supportive of the country that takes them in, than wealthy “investors” who will leave at the first sign they may actually have to contribute something.

    • Draco T Bastard 22.1

      +111

      • Anne 22.1.1

        Refugees are much more committed and supportive of the country that takes them in, than wealthy “investors” who will leave at the first sign they may actually have to contribute something.

        +1111

        Investors that don’t even bother to live in the country but merely visit from time to time to oversee their property investments and the like.

        • Tracey 22.1.1.1

          or in mr lui case gets in and instead of delivering what he promised spends his interpreters time trying to soften the law. surely a level of english within a year of arriving is as helpful to the immigrant as fellow kiwis.

          I am uneasy about having citizenship granted to folk who need interpreters

  23. Anne 23

    Trouble is mickysavage the issue is sometimes exactly what gobsmacked is saying – blatant lies that need to be addressed by Labour.

    I heard the Cunliffe dog-whistle claim twice today. First at a family luncheon and the second was on The Panel where both sets of people agreed it was a dog whistle by Cunliffe. My pick is both groups saw Gower on TV3 and were just repeating his claim. Funnily enough Mora defended Cunliffe – sort of anyway.

    Not good enough. It’s demoralising for activists. You can’t help thinking… what’s the use of wasting one’s time delivering pamphlets, phone canvassing etc., if Labour isn’t going to stand up to these attacks.

    • Katherine 23.1

      Good points Anne.

    • Tracey 23.2

      and perhaps respond quickly with

      nzier make it clear why national dont want to address housing… without high prices the emperor of the economy has no clothes…

      give the media a bone to go and chew on… dont leave them with nothing.

    • NickS 23.3

      This, don’t leave it to the damn PR flaks to do the work, just come out with the recordings and show the damn truth of the matter, namely that Gower is a lying sack of shite.

      And fuck the rest of the media for not doing their bloody job and repeating Gower’s bullshit, as basic research is pretty simple and quick to do now.

  24. Herodotus 24

    “Labour’s policies in the area are clear. Local speculators will face a comprehensive capital gains tax, offshore speculators will be stopped and there is a significant building programme planned involving 100,000 new affordable homes over ten years.”
    What a load of rubbish, paying a CGT approx 50% of the top personal tax rate and with exceptions is NOT comprehensive, paying the tax rate for trading in property at the top tax rate is and anyway local speculators should be paying on their gains under existing ird rules. If only governments since 2000 started expecting the ird to apply the laws and testing the effectiveness of our legislation in courts and if found wanting making ammendments should the law be lacking.
    Building 100k homes priced in the vicinity of $400+k is not affordable for many. Building 100k state homes is something that a party purporting to represent many is.

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