Cracker by Damian Christie

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Cracker: RIght On.

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  • Craig Ranapia,

    Same the real problem hasn't changed: ACT is neither libertarian fish nor populist right-wing foul, and it's tendency to foul its linen in public isn't clearing things up .for anyone. Bugger.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12073 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    (The common word to both those descriptions being the most accurate one: foul.)

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 931 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Michie,

    If I'm remembering right, ACT began with a message that a libertarian approach should be popular across left and right wings but found it could not sell that to the left and reverted to the right, finding there a discussion of policy was insufficient so turned to more typical popularist right-wing messages.

    I'm sure Dr Brash would like to restore an intelligent discussion of policy but having previously tried this I'm unsure where the party goes from there. I am assuming that National will want to keep ACT in play as a colation partner and will not attempt to take over its supporters as it tried to when Brash was leader.

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 573 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Savidge,

    Seems to me that this suits National very well going into an election. They're flying in the polls, are likely to be in a strong position to either govern alone or with Dunne/Act support. Thereafter they have the numbers to swing right and really get their agenda going.

    In fact, I'm starting to feel this is a long-standing plan finally coming to fruition.

    Somewhere near Wellington… • Since Nov 2006 • 319 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Watching this go down (Brash and then Banks? not even members yet ) it seems to me that this is just a scheme on the part of the Nats to sop up what would be the wasted right wing votes if Act didn't make the MMP threshold - kind of if Labour did the same to keep the Greens alive

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2201 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie,

    @Tim - With respect (and I'm prepared to be wrong) I'm not sure if you do remember rightly, I think ACT has always had this dilemma. I don't think Douglas is exactly a dyed in the wool libertarian. The focus has always been far more about economic liberalism (Unfinished Business), and as much as the party's manifesto makes lots of libertarian noises, there's always been this Conservative/Libertarian split. It pisses a lot of the young people off.

    Ironically, the 'rejuvenation' of Act looks likely to result in Banks, Brash and Douglas (is he sticking around, I can't recall)...all of whom have something of a grandfatherly whiff about them. Time for a young vibrant party of the right...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1130 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie,

    @Paul - I think Act would always win Epsom though wouldn't they? So the votes would never be wasted. I think Brash is genuinely disaffected with National, rolled by the populist vaguely centrist Key.. they might work together, but I don't think it's a plan by the Nats.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1130 posts Report Reply

  • Nightwyrm,

    It's interesting that the ACT Party have seemingly tainted their reputation further with publicly denying any knowledge about discussions or agreements, while holding backroom chats with Brash. Will they lose (more) public trust from this?

    There's also been some interesting chats at my work on whether there'll be grounds for a legal challenge of the ACT list seats if Hide goes independent. In the 2008 election, Hide won the sole electorate seat for ACT, gaining the party four list seats. However, with the party vote being 3.65%, that's under the threshold, so what happens if his electorate seat becomes an independent?

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Oct 2010 • 9 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Damian Christie,

    @Tim – With respect (and I’m prepared to be wrong) I’m not sure if you do remember rightly, I think ACT has always had this dilemma. I don’t think Douglas is exactly a dyed in the wool libertarian. The focus has always been far more about economic liberalism (Unfinished Business), and as much as the party’s manifesto makes lots of libertarian noises, there’s always been this Conservative/Libertarian split. It pisses a lot of the young people off.

    Indeed -- the internal contradictions have been there right from the very beginning. I remember Act's first public meeting -- I think it was still a lobby group and not a political party at the time -- and there were libertarians and economic liberals standing uncomfortably next to string-'em-up types and social conservatives.

    There's also the other key faction: the loonies. I don't think any Parliamentary party has had a senior official as crazy as Act's former VP -- and now full-time Obama-hunting conspiracy nut -- Trevor Loudon. Not in my lifetime anyway.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19116 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew E,

    “Labour will fight tooth and nail against the agenda of Don Brash and John Key"

    Well, so far their fighting has been pretty toothless. Hopefully the nails will prove somewhat more effective.

    Sadly though, a tag line for a certain beverage springs to mind.

    174.77 x 41.28 • Since Sep 2008 • 199 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    and it's tendency to foul its linen in public isn't clearing things up .for anyone. Bugger.

    Not likely to change under Brash either, who left under the cloud of scandal too.

    I think Act would always win Epsom though wouldn't they?

    I don't think it's certain at all. A lot of Nats don't like ACT, and there is the possibility for Labour voters to tactically vote the National candidate in. I don't know why they didn't do it last time. ACT could have been history if only a few thousand Labour voters in Epsom could look past traditional tribal enmity to the big MMP picture.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8737 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Withers,

    I've always wondered why anyone would vote for ACT. I'm still wondering.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 281 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    Given the fractious nature of the caucus (and party in general) coupled with the relative austerity of the resources available to a minor party, I will be very interested to see how well Brash does at developing and delivering a coherent policy message. Beyond, of course, his rancid "Iwi vs Kiwi" rhetoric.

    To some extent, I think the 2005 campaign has inoculated a proportion of the voters against getting worked up about the same thing (lack of intellectual rigour aside) a second time. Rather like how Winston Peters can no longer garner votes by Asian-bashing. OTOH, that could just be wishful thinking.

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 461 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie,

    @Ben - a lot of National voters don't like Act, but they are also demonstrably smarter than the Epsom Labour voters when it comes to voting tactically. National had already said they weren't going to stand anyone strong in Epsom, so while it's academic now, I still think it was pretty much a fader-complee :)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1130 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie,

    I just realised that I should've called this post "Dr Brash and Mr Hide". DAMMIT

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1130 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Hannah, in reply to BenWilson,

    I don’t know why they didn’t do it last time. ACT could have been history if only a few thousand Labour voters in Epsom could look past traditional tribal enmity to the big MMP picture.

    If only all 5,112 Epsom voters who voted for Kate Sutton in 2008 had instead each cast just two or three votes for Richard Worth, then Rodney Hide would not have won.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 224 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Same the real problem hasn't changed: ACT is neither libertarian fish nor populist right-wing foul, and it's tendency to foul its linen in public isn't clearing things up .for anyone. Bugger.

    Or to put it succinctly, Tea Party, with a dash of Consumers & Taxpayers Association. No, make that Consumers United Not Taxpayers. Or should that be the Reform Party NZ? Oh, hang on, the Bankers' Popular Front is over there!

    Damian:

    Ironically, the 'rejuvenation' of Act looks likely to result in Banks, Brash and Douglas (is he sticking around, I can't recall)...all of whom have something of a grandfatherly whiff about them. Time for a young vibrant party of the right...

    Or a LibDems Kiwi-style, for social libertarians who are economically moderate, unless Labour can somehow pick up that ball and run with it. The Libertarianz theoretically fits the bill, but they've always been on the fringes.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4431 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Indeed – the internal contradictions have been there right from the very beginning.

    There's also similar contradictions in the Greens -- but they at least have some discipline and civility at the organisational and caucus levels.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12073 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Andrew E,

    Well, so far their fighting has been pretty toothless. Hopefully the nails will prove somewhat more effective.

    Honestly, I think Labour has to do a lot better than "lookit, SEEKRITAGENDA" - again. Really, I think people have gotten sick of waiting for John Key to reveal he's actually Ruth Richardson in man-drag.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12073 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew E, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Agreed. Especially as large numbers of people appear (for reasons which I have yet to divine) to have no objection to doing the Time Warp again.

    Perhaps Labour could focus on the line that says, "It's a jump to the left"

    174.77 x 41.28 • Since Sep 2008 • 199 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Michie,

    Damian, Russell: I agree. Liberalism as opposed to libertarism far better ACT's initial annpnced positions with many writing their own message into what then then loggy group was telling them. On becoming a policital party - which always seemed the obvious conclusion to me looking from the outside - selling pure policy became too hard (especially to Douglas I believe, expecting to have won or to win all he spoke to in those days) so the drive to popularism. I guess that's when the factions decided they were all driving the bus.

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 573 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    Time for a young vibrant party of the right...

    hmm?

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1239 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to DeepRed,

    make that Consumers United Not Taxpayers

    I'm glad *someone* picked up on that one :)

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16996 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to BenWilson,

    Not likely to change under Brash either, who left under the cloud of scandal

    Lest we forget the dodgy dealings of Brash, Key, Joyce and their brethren, NZ On Screen has posted the full length Hollow Men for all to view (embedded, 149MB for first clip of 5).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16996 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    ACT is neither libertarian fish nor populist right-wing foul,

    It's tuna, the "chicken of the sea":

    Just imagine Don Brash with Jessica Simpson's body. Go on, I dare you.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

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