OnPoint by Keith Ng

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OnPoint: Dear Labour Caucus

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  • merc, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    We are all in this together type thing.

    Definitely, the anti-Patriarch stance.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to merc,

    Well you know when the others zag you zig…

    Yes it's a grid, you always end up at the beach ;)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6018 posts Report Reply

  • Pete Sime, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    Key isn’t great in the House, he is as good as George Bush ever was , I’ll give him that.

    True, but the media rarely broadcasts any clips from the House proceedings. It takes away screen time from their political reporters. And I guess there's too much to wade through to get a package ready for broadcast by 6 o'clock. They seem to prefer reporting on press conferences and hallway-interviews.

    Dunedin • Since Apr 2008 • 144 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    Then you paddle out the back again ;-)

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    It doesn't have to be against, it could be alongside

    Media attention is not unlimited. Non-government parties certainly need to work together this term.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16495 posts Report Reply

  • Keith Ng, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    The basis of this post is that Cunliffe has given firm undertakings, Shearer none (not even to Parker. Yeah, right.), and that Cunliffe supporters have been bought, whilst Shearer are disinterested agents of change. One would want to see some sort of, you know, evidence, other than a bunch of people surrounding Cunliffe’s car on election night.

    I have it on good authority that Cunliffe have offer a lot of positions to a lot of people, in return for their support. Obviously, short of accidentally taping the guy, I can't offer any evidence to back this up. But this piece of information is why I decided to write the post in the first place. Take it or leave it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 530 posts Report Reply

  • Keith Ng,

    Oh, except that Goff already had the numbers and was hoping to delay their release for a couple of days. From above a comment above – http://business.scoop.co.nz/2011/11/19/phil-goff-on-the-nation-2/

    See my previous comment.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 530 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Pete Sime,

    Yep, smiley wave and a soundbite. If a response isn't immediate, the public don't hear it. I just often hear about "how hard it will be to go up against Key" Bah humbug, just do the homework and Key crumbles. Then you get on the 6 o'clock bulletin. Work the Media intelligently, they are not changing. Go around it.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6018 posts Report Reply

  • Keith Ng, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    That’s another thing I don’t get about this post: if Cunliffe has really been scheming for a whole term (while Parker/Shearer haven’t) and is so complicit with the way the list punished new talent in order to preserve voting blocks in caucus, how come his block was so far behind Shearer’s at the starting line, and the former leader and deputy leader – who surely are most responsible about the list selection process – lined up behind his opponent?

    I'm not saying that Cunliffe was responsible for the list selection - obviously, he wasn't. I'm saying the same kind of cultural problems which leads to a crappy list also leads to the kind of caucus that would prioritise self-promotion over the good of the party.

    As to how Cunliffe can do so much manoeuvring and still come out behind Shearer, that's because a lot of people really don't like Cunliffe. The whole "is he a dick? Or is he just smart? Is he the kind of dick Labour needs? Is he too much of a dick?" argument is one that I don't want to start.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 530 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Keith Ng,

    But this piece of information is why I decided to write the post in the first place. Take it or leave it.

    I'll leave it, because your greater argument - that Cunliffe represents "the old system" - doesn't stand up to elementary logic. Just look at who's voting for whom, for heaven's sake. Also, for this post to make a shred of sense you'd have to have it on the equally supposedly good authority that Shearer hasn't done the same. Which, considering how camp Parker moved entirely into camp Shearer, is just impossible to credit.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7351 posts Report Reply

  • Keith Ng,

    Unfortunately, this piece comes over as a piece of Farrar-esque spin. There’s nothing wrong in writing a piece supporting your preferred leadership candidate, but why not just write something which honestly and openly espouses the virtues of the candidate, instead of this kind of pretty insubstantial innuendo?

    Because this isn't about Shearer's virtues - or even about Cunliffe's vices. This post is about whether the caucus can reach beyond naked personal ambition.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 530 posts Report Reply

  • Keith Ng, in reply to martinb,

    "I'm not anti-Cunliffe perse, It's just that he is the robotic anti-christ who would spell dooooooom for everyone"

    Note the past-tense that I used. I didn't start out as anti-Cunliffe, but - quite obviously - I am now.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 530 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Keith Ng,

    The whole "is he a dick? Or is he just smart? Is he the kind of dick Labour needs? Is he too much of a dick?" argument is one that I don't want to start.

    There's a good reason why the "don't be a dick" rules that cede arbitrary authority to the organizers of a Foo camp can't possibly work in politics. It's actually borderline whether they can even work in a robust debating society. They sure don't work in school playgrounds, other than to divide them into camps full of people who think the dicks are the other camps.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8318 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to BenWilson,

    There's a good reason why the "don't be a dick" rules that cede arbitrary authority to the organizers of a Foo camp can't possibly work in politics

    Have I ever told you that I love you, Ben?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7351 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    Have I ever told you that I love you, Ben?

    You never have.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8318 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to BenWilson,

    You never have.

    Allow me to correct that oversight. I love you, Ben.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7351 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie, in reply to BenWilson,

    As @BenThomas said before

    He did?

    I'm sorry. Caught up on 4ish pages of comments and couldn't be arsed going back to check. Was Ben Thomas even in this conversation?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1128 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Homer, in reply to BenWilson,

    Except that they have been extremely accurate? I don’t see how it’s possible to be sure there has or hasn’t been insider trading, that’s an incredibly difficult thing to prosecute.

    They haven't been extremely accurate (yet), because the events these contracts cover are still far from being determined. Some of the contracts (I mean PM.2014.X and the like) are averaging ten shares traded a day and jump around markedly on single trades, because seemingly nobody is really interested in them. Because of all that market manipulation would be both cheap and easy, so to the extent that there are "insiders" on them it's probably to do that. It's working, too; somehow "X drops on ipredict" is now a legitimate story, and you can spend a few dollars to make it happen for your camp.

    More to the point though, I don't trust them as predictions here because the various contracts don't match up or trade in line with each other. When a Labour PM is less likely than Shearer or Cunliffe personally the market simply isn't working. The shorter-term predictions have been pretty good.

    On insider trading, they explicitly encourage you to do that. There's nothing to prosecute.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 47 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie, in reply to Rich Lock,

    thanks to the vagaries of the electoral system, the Nacts will only have a slim majority with whatever coalition eventually gets stitched together.

    Yeah, that's true, FWIW. And I take what I assume to be your underlying point that the gloss will be coming off the Govt this term. Honeymoon's over, certainly with the media, but my point is don't underestimate the public's support for Key, when close to 1 in 2 voters opted for a "John Key-led Government" just a fortnight ago.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1128 posts Report Reply

  • HenryB, in reply to Damian Christie,

    We had a nationwide poll a couple of weeks back with a pretty low margin of error, showed they were up on last time.

    It depends on what we mean by `they'. I am uncomfortable with the idea that there has been swing to the right. After all, NAT+ACT+UF have gone from 63 seats to 61. Yes, National did get a higher % than last time - but, then, where were the ACT votes going to go? I realise that JK himself is popular but I think what the nationwide poll showed was that the electorate votes on more than the popularity of the leader.

    Does this mean that the choice between the two David's doesn't matter in terms of the next election? I think it does but not in terms of public popularity - though that would be nice. What one needs is someone who can bring the caucus together to work towards (a) articulating Labour Policy more clearly and cogently in the next 3 years and (b) who can get the caucus to be more forceful in showing the weaknesses of the governments policies.

    It has been suggested that Goff carried too much baggage from the past to be good at these tasks in the last 3 years. On the other hand, I really don't know which of the two David's would be better at them either. It would seem that some have knowledge about DC which would suggest that he'd not be good at these tasks. And the existence of an ABC group is troubling.

    Palmerston North • Since Sep 2008 • 106 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie, in reply to Pete Sime,

    True, but the media rarely broadcasts any clips from the House proceedings.

    1. The entire thing is broadcast on Parliament TV, which is on freeview, and free online. Anyone can knock themselves out watching as much as they want.

    2. If by "rarely" you mean "most sitting days" then sure. Granted, they don't take whole swathes - although RNZ, also part of "the media" has a bit more in the early evening. As Question Time is often interrupted by Points of Order, disorder, and characterised by Ministers trying to score points, evade and/or give smart-arse answers to politically-loaded questions, it's difficult to edit down to any reasonably time constraints, and I wonder how much value it is to have any more than we do. I personally find much more value from politicians given answers directly to media, like one gets in those bridge stand-ups and post-cabinet press meetings you don't seem to favour.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1128 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew E, in reply to Keith Ng,

    Umm, short answer? No, not unless they're retirement-bound, like Goff & King (and arguably there is even the faint glimmer of future baubles to motivate them too).

    Politicians are motivated by the desire to change things for the better (as they see it). But they quickly learn that you need a position of authority to effect real change (given that select committees here are so useless, and accepting the sub-domain of politics that they've chosen to enter). So, it is hardly surprising that a franchise made up of people who live and breath this paradigm will be motivated by naked ambition to improve their own chances of obtaining a position which will (supposedly) enable them to effect change.

    In other news, the Pope today confirmed he is a Catholic...

    174.77 x 41.28 • Since Sep 2008 • 197 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    Whoa some harsh criticism of Keith here.

    If I read him correctly he is objecting to Labour operating with very much the same patterns of behaviour that left them with an awful election result. To me this is less a criticism of Cunliffe, than a criticism of a grace and favour method of selecting leaders and front bench jobs.

    It seems to me that Keith wants Labour to be better than that.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3266 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew E,

    I'm sure we all do, Bart. But the implication of the post appears to be that you can't be a disinterested Labour MP, wanting the best for the party, and the country, and also be a supporter of Mr Cunliffe. I'm not sure where the evidence for that proposition is.

    174.77 x 41.28 • Since Sep 2008 • 197 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie, in reply to HenryB,

    It depends on what we mean by `they’.

    Absolutely, as I explained above in response to Rich. Act imploded. We got a different bunch of dicks in NZ First, but they’re not part of the Government.

    A lot of the ACT vote, I would argue, went to the Conservatives. In fact if you add those two together, it’s almost exactly what ACT got in 2008.

    I think what the nationwide poll showed was that the electorate votes on more than the popularity of the leader.

    I’m interested in what you mean by that. I think that’s true for a number of people – the twenty-odd percent who voted for Labour arguably did it despite not rating Goff as their preferred PM (just going on polls). The numbers who voted for the Greens perhaps did so for reasons other than a crush on Norman/Turei. But really, why do you think for months all we heard was the phrase “John Key-led Government” from every Nact candidate? Why did Winston get in?

    My main point is this though: National won the same number of electorates as last time, and got a slightly higher party vote than last time. Labour suffered a massive defeat. I think we can accept these things are facts – in which case I think it’s a bit too soon to characterise how I think a lot of media, and certainly much of the left would like to portray this next term as one where National are on the back foot. I’d say that 3 years out, 2014 is already theirs to lose. But I agree that this time around there are more ways for them to do that, and unpopular policies such as asset sales is one of them.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1128 posts Report Reply

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