It is significant as a monetary figure, but Labour’s reduction from $5000 to 0 is arguably more so, at least wrt to the political philosophy of the party. Implementing a $2000 tax free threshold appears more realisable in an MMP Government.
Nonetheless, groups advocating $10,000 tax-free threshold following the raise in GST include those inveterate Marxist-Leninists at the Auckland Chamber of Commerce. By which I mean it was a distinct turn to the right to abandon or scale back the measure.
I thought that they went down from $10k to $2k was quite significant. I'm pretty sure it's the case as I had a conversation with Norman about it on Twitter during the campaign.
Why the Greens?
Didn't the Greens reduce the tax free threshold to $2,000 in the end?
To be fair, it is the darling theory of a number of left-wing middle-aged men, Chris Trotter in primis.
And a split might also help with that wee problem about the conservative homophobic working class / liberal academic middle class
Is there a compelling reason to deal with imaginary problems?
This is nothing compared with the late 1980s. For years the Labour Party tore itself to pieces. Halls full of people shouting at each other. People who had been on the same side of the barricades in 1981 nursed an active and long lasting hatred of their former allies. No wonder so many people are still fighting those battles.
My impression of those battles is that they were about political differences. The current ones, not so much.
I think quite a few of them won’t be doing so this time. And I suppose it’s okay for me to note that James isn’t the only new candidate who encountered the same public sentiment about Cunliffe while canvassing, and who now feels it is untenable for Cunliffe to lead the party into another election. I have heard this directly.
Cunliffe will not lead the party into another election, because he will lose the leadership contest. Threatening to leave the party if he should win such a contest - all the more since it won't happen! - strikes me as an incredibly unhelpful public pronouncement to make, as well as one that should raise concern about the capacity of sectors of the party to come to terms with internal democracy.
Is there truth in this "I don't like Cunliffe" anecdotal meme we're hearing from door knockers? I don't know. Results in James' own electorate suggest maybe not. Would voters have responded in similar ways, or worse, had another candidate been at the top of the ticket? I don't know that either. The theory that Cunliffe is solely responsible for Labour's defeat or even its main cause seems outlandish to me. Either way, Ben is right: the one-sided vilification of Cunliffe (he's a narcissist! Unlike every other leadership hopeful ever) is as bizarre as that post of Keith's in 2011 originated by someone in Shearer's camp telling him that Cunliffe was offering positions in exchange for support. Which is very precisely what Shearer himself was doing, as later became clear when all the slots on his front bench were filled exactly as had been anticipated by the media.
There is a very thin line between freely expressing your opinion and manipulating the democratic process. If you people choose candidate X, I'm leaving, is really not a ringing endorsement of the party membership that James wishes in the future to represent.
Why do all these Labour Party people keep saying that David Cunliffe is bad idea?
Except for the majority that voted for him, you mean?
I mean really, the collective taking of David Cunliffe's responsibilities - Robertson made sure he even blamed him for the man apology comment - was truly moving.
[And, er, who did give Clayton that high caucus spot? Who said "Clayton will be the next minister for earthquake recovery", and made damn sure that Clayton was safe on the list so that that could happen?]
The caucus of which Cunliffe was the undisputed leader since there was no majority faction undermining him, it's just a lie manufactured by the media. As demonstrated by the wonderful discipline and message unity exhibited by said caucus after the election.