Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: Madness in Mt Albert

329 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 14 Newer→ Last

  • Gareth Ward,

    Perhaps the Greens are finally coming around to the Sustainable/Unsustainable dichotomy instead of the Left/Right one (something Nandor has been proposing).

    In all honesty, running a genuine campaign in Mt Albert that doesn't play with "helping out your mates to make the system work our way wink wink" political crap would raise my esteem of them. Gordon Campbell, for once, is well off the mark IMO.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1721 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    Again, it's not so much the fault of the candidates, but rather the fault of the voting system. FPP is fundamentally designed to reinforce traditional 2-party systems, and, of all the available systems, is the most vulnerable to gerrymandering and spoiler effects. This old Hard News post on the 2001 AKL regional elections comes to mind...

    I have seen an open letter from City Vision's Lindsay Rea that nails Maire Leadbetter, the Greens and the Water Pressure Group for breaking an accord in Eden-Albert, standing multiple candidates, and splitting what should have been a comfortable centre-left vote - giving Banks and the CitRats their majority.

    I wouldn't know. But I do know that this kind of thing must never happen again. I want to see a really good mayoral candidate next time round - and no, not Matt McCarten looking for a job, and not, thanks for the vote of confidence to those people who've suggested it, me either.

    Just what the red-greens don't want, and hoping against hope a mistake to learn from.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4306 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    The other potential risk for the Greens is that Norman runs and doesn't do well at all. Which may have some impacts upon his perception in the general public, and in a minor way, on future Green election campaigns.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6179 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Just what the red-greens don't want, and hoping against hope a mistake to learn from.

    That was a disaster.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18893 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Again, why the hostility? This is like a Kiwiblog thread ...

    I think there is some hostility to the idea of one-way solidarity on the Left and that it has some history on these boards dating back at least to the last election. I think it's a legitimate and reasonable gripe and nothing to do with the tenor of Kiwiblog threads really.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7378 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    How about, when one of those right-wing blogs comes up with some bullshit, just ignore them, Russell? When you feel the D.. or the K... word coming out, stop, and post something about the issues that actually affect people in Mt Albert and elsewhere.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4459 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    To be fair, those are precisely the Labour issues laid out by Lynn Prentice, who lives in the electorate and seems to be well up to speed on campaigning on them. I suspect he'd rather strongly object to them being claimed as "Green issues".

    Sorry, I wasn't being clear. I didn't mean that the Green's had a mortgage on these issues (to use a Tamihere-ism), but that they are issues which the Greens would naturally engage. Hopefully there is enough common ground for both parties to work with each other on these issues during the campaign.

    If Norman was to poll well enough to let National through the middle, it would damage relations between the parties, at least in the short term and at the grassroots level. I would imagine the local Labour people would feel carpetbagged.

    Perhaps this would be similar to how we felt when Labour went with Peters and Dunne in 2005 ? We managed to get over it, I'm sure Labour is capable of doing the same. I take your point though, which is why it would be that the Greens and Labour conduct amicable campaigns - the focus needs to be on issues and how the current government is making things worse, not better. If the Greens do take significant votes off Labour, I would prefer that it is because our campaign was consonant with the electorate, rather than because we conducted an attack against Labour.

    OTOH, if Labour lost Mt Albert it could provoke a re-examination of the capability of their current leadership, and perhaps result in a stronger leadership emerging.

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 455 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    I/S is quite right. Such "accomodations" are cancerous and corrosive of the electoral system. That said, this Mt. Albert elector unfortunately has his money firmly on a Nat win, at this stage. Labour will have to do something special to retain the seat.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    I think there is some hostility to the idea of one-way solidarity on the Left and that it has some history on these boards dating back at least to the last election.

    Gio, like you I'm a Labour voter, though not a member. I don't see the solidarity as being one way but I appreciate that the Greens feel hard done by over the last coalition arrangement (as per Mikaere's latest post). I understand that the Greens are rebranding through the MoU with National and that Norman's got a profile to build.

    I don't agree with I/S though that campaigning is somehow seperate from governing. I thought Labour and the Alliance proved the advantages of sympathetic campaigning to win in 1999. Perhaps National and Act did again just last election.

    It'd be foolish to think that Labour won't work tirelessly to win Mt Albert for all the reasons mentioned up-thread. I wish Norman well, I want the Greens to be a strong and viable party even if I don't think they need an electorate seat to be that (incidentally, I volunteered on Grant Robertson's campaign in Wellington Central where, I understand, the Greens have the highest party vote).

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    If instead of sending our army in the future we were to send cash which was used to purchase private military services, I'd have no problem with calling this privatisation.

    You'd be wrong. The correct term is "scutage".

    It can't be both?

    Graeme, if I wasn't a bit busy, I'd try and come up with a more contemporary military analogy for "drawing a long bow" ...

    A long bow? I wasn't suggesting it was any party's policy, or that anyone was suggesting it as a serious idea for New Zealand, but if it came to it that the United Nations called for peacekeepers to be sent somewhere, and we sent money to pay for private security firms instead of sending our soldiers, I'd call that privatisation.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3004 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Ward,

    <quote>I wasn't suggesting it was any party's policy, or that anyone was suggesting it as a serious idea for New Zealand<quote>
    So why did you bring it up? Because you did quote Russell's comment that Key's "privatising the army" quip was outright bullshit.

    Your comments about privatised armies, of course, have nothing to do with what Shearer wrote or even a possible outcome of his thinking. He's saying "last resort if UN don't have soldiers? Then they use money for private firms". We would send soldiers or nothing.
    Possibly you're suggesting that by sending nothing, but providing our share of the funding for the UN, we would be "privatising" peacekeeping simply by association. THAT's a long bow.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1721 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Perhaps this would be similar to how we felt when Labour went with Peters and Dunne in 2005 ?

    I'd have greatly preferred a coalition with the Greens. But the fact is that without the Maori Party there wasn't a majority to govern with -- from memory, a few thousand votes to bring in Nandor would've done it -- and Labour's other potential partners were refusing to support a government that included the Greens in Cabinet.

    Was there another way it could have been done in the circumstances?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18893 posts Report Reply

  • Ethan Tucker,

    I wasn't suggesting it was any party's policy, or that anyone was suggesting it as a serious idea for New Zealand, but if it came to it that the United Nations called for peacekeepers to be sent somewhere, and we sent money to pay for private security firms instead of sending our soldiers, I'd call that privatisation.

    The Fijians might do it if we asked them nicely. They've already got a bit of a Foreign Legion thing going on, after all.

    Wellington • Since Apr 2008 • 106 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    I'd have greatly preferred a coalition with the Greens. But the fact is that without the Maori Party there wasn't a majority to govern with -- from memory, a few thousand votes to bring in Nandor would've done it -- and Labour's other potential partners were refusing to support a government that included the Greens in Cabinet.

    And that, it seems to me, is at the heart of this quandry.

    Labour's candidate will eventually be choosen and they'll be to the left or right of the party but that's neither here nor there. Norman's candidacy will focus everyone's attention on the shifting orientation of the Greens as Norman will have to articulate what the party stands for post Fitzsimmons' leadership. If that's towards the middle, presumably in hope of having more bargining power with either Labour or National, are the Greens hoping to win a seat to compensate for the potential loss of list seats? Is that seat Mt Albert? Really?

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    So why did you bring it up? Because you did quote Russell's comment that Key's "privatising the army" quip was outright bullshit.

    Russell's quote was "no one but John Key has talked about privatising our national army or anyone else's. "

    I happen to think that were we or anyone else to choose not to meet our/their obligations to assist with international security and peacekeeping throught the UN, not by putting troops in harm's way, but instead by paying someone in the private sector to do it for us, that that would be privatisation.

    Just as I would consider it to be privatisation if we decided that the Department of Corrections should no longer keep prisoners, but that we were paying someone in the private sector to do it instead.

    I'm not attempting to make a judgment call over whether this would be a good idea - in the provision of military or correctional services - just calling it what it is. He may well be right that it would be better to send in private troops, instead of sending in no-one (or no-one good), but if we send in private troops instead of public one's I don't see how we can sensibly claim not to have privatised something.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3004 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    I don't agree with I/S though that campaigning is somehow seperate from governing. I thought Labour and the Alliance proved the advantages of sympathetic campaigning to win in 1999.

    There's nothing wrong with sympathetic campaigning and highlighting your ability to work closely with another party in coalition. But note that in 1999 this did not extend tot he alliance meekly bowing out and clearing the field for Labour 'so the left could win".

    That's what Ihave a problem with, and its what some labour supporters seem to be implicitly demanding.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1642 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Ward,

    , but if we send in private troops instead of public one's I don't see how we can sensibly claim not to have privatised something.

    Totally agree - but that's not been called for by Shearer or anyone.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1721 posts Report Reply

  • Gary Rawnsley,

    Norman's candidacy will focus everyone's attention on the shifting orientation of the Greens as Norman will have to articulate what the party stands for post Fitzsimmons' leadership. If that's towards the middle, presumably in hope of having more bargining power with either Labour or National, are the Greens hoping to win a seat to compensate for the potential loss of list seats? Is that seat Mt Albert? Really?

    Well, as electorates go, Mt Albert is actually a reasonably good target for the Greens. They got around 11% of the party vote there in 2008, making it their seventh-best electorate, after Wellington Central (21%), Rongotai (17%), Dunedin North (16%), Auckland Central (15%), Port Hills (14%) and Christchurch Central (11%). Sensing a pattern here?

    It probably make senses for Labour to help gift the Greens an electorate to try and get the latter an insurance policy akin to Act's Epsom. Perhaps Rongotai when Annette King retires?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Is that seat Mt Albert? Really?

    No, it isn't. I can't envisage a scenario where they'd actually win, but that's not the aim.

    The first goal, I imagine, would be to bridge the gap between Jon Carapiet's personal tally last November (2019) and the Green Party vote (3846 and a healthy 11% share).

    So that would be 1827 votes that presumably went to Helen Clark from Green Party voters.

    The gap between Labour (14,894) and National (12468) was 2426.

    You can see how it's getting a bit dicey for Labour ...

    And I don't think losing a seat that has only ever been held by Labour since it was created in 1946 would be just any old loss.

    As I noted in the original post, Labour's best card is the clutch of local issues where National might be vulnerable.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18893 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    Well, as electorates go, Mt Albert is actually a reasonably good target for the Greens. They got around 11% of the party vote there in 2008, making it their seventh-best electorate, after Wellington Central (21%), Rongotai (17%), Dunedin North (16%), Auckland Central (15%), Port Hills (14%) and Christchurch Central (11%). Sensing a pattern here?

    Yes, but not the one I suspect you're sensing. I sense that the Greens have yet to break through an win an electorate seat and have still played an important role in the governing of NZ since 1999. I'd say Wellington Central will only firm for Labour and that when Annette retires, Rongotai will elect another Labour representative.

    My point was that I wonder whether winning a seat is (a) needed or (b) achievable without a move to the centre which could compromise list votes and make the Greens more vulnerable.

    It probably make senses for Labour to help gift the Greens an electorate to try and get the latter an insurance policy akin to Act's Epsom. Perhaps Rongotai when Annette King retires?

    Gift to Greens? Now that'd be arrogant.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • Gary Rawnsley,

    Well, a Green victory would only seem plausible if some public polling showed National well ahead (not so outlandish) and the Greens neck-and-neck with Labour for second (pretty damn outlandish). This could convince anti-government voters to rally around the Greens. An enormous longshot, though...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    It probably make senses for Labour to help gift the Greens an electorate to try and get the latter an insurance policy akin to Act's Epsom. Perhaps Rongotai when Annette King retires?

    That can be a bit of a poisoned chalice - ACT are basically Key's to command, he can wipe them out at the next election if they displease him. I doubt the Greens would want to be so constrained.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 901 posts Report Reply

  • Gary Rawnsley,

    I don't have any horse in the race ... my only point is that it makes sense for Labour to want the Greens to have an electorate seat, on the grounds that:
    a) it's hard to imagine Labour governing again in the next decade without Green support;
    b) there will probably come an election in the next 10 to 20 years when the Greens just miss out on 5%, and an electorate seat would act as a good insurance policy against Green obliteration.

    The Greens did win an electorate seat (Coromandel in 1999). The only pattern I was sensing was that the Greens seem to do well in the inner city electorates of our four largest cities.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Gift to Greens? Now that'd be arrogant.

    Rongotai is about as Labour stronghold as they come, surely. Far too working class for the Greens to have a shot, I would have thought.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7378 posts Report Reply

  • James Littlewood*,

    As opposed to the usual campaign slogan of "who the fuck are you again?"

    ROFLNUI.

    RB: fair cop. No hostility intended. Just squeezing in PA between paid work = unedited posts. Um, thanks for the gender correction.

    And also, yeah, a bit more heated than usual. Your piece giving some perspective to the 3 News was appreciated.

    But hey, it seems to be catching. Only last week that guy from a private school got abused in here so fast he ran straight out again(pity, that). My god, actual squabbles, here in the affable surrounds of PA.

    I'd suggest that whatever risks the Greens face going all out for Albert, they're miniscule, and especially miniscule compared to the risks of NOT going all out.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 212 posts Report Reply

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 14 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.