OnPoint by Keith Ng

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OnPoint: Dear Labour Caucus

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  • Ross Mason,

    Have we just been fleeced?

    Cut above the rest?

    Blade Runner?

    Beware the second shear.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1458 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie, in reply to Andrew E,

    Damian, no belief in the VRWC here, just recognition of common beliefs, and interests, and therefore congruent actions.

    Hmm. I guess I just see more of a disconnect between a political journo and the publisher/masthead behind them. Certainly in the newsrooms I've worked in.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1121 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Andrew E,

    Damian, no belief in the VRWC here, just recognition of common beliefs, and interests, and therefore congruent actions.

    Exactly, there doesn't have to actually BE a VWRC if people act as if there is and adjust their actions accordingly.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 1701 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie,

    ... or maybe I've just never been invited to those meetings where everyone is told to start promoting the Torys in a subtle-yet-pervasive manner. Maybe that's some nek-level-freemason shit that I'm not yet privvy to.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1121 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Damian Christie,

    or maybe I've just never been invited to those meetings where everyone is told to start promoting the Torys in a subtle-yet-pervasive manner.

    There are explicit editorial lines (read: endorsements, which are rare in New Zealand, possibly unheard of), editorial allegiances (less uncommon), the choice of columnists (crucial) and then there is the manner in which politics is covered. Seeing as the country lacks a robust political periodical, or even a weekly willing to go into the necessary depth (is Jane Clifton really the best we can do?), we're pretty much stuch with inside baseball 24/7. And inside baseball implicitly favours the right wing approach to politics, in that it glosses over serious, knotty political debates, completely overlooks the material conditions that underlie them (including the issue of class), makes governing less important than personalities,

    Case in point: have you heard much in the last month about the actual political differences between Cunliffe and Shearer?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7315 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew E,

    +1 for Gio's reply. I was simply going to point Damian in the direction of Manufacturing Consent.

    174.77 x 41.28 • Since Sep 2008 • 196 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    Shearer

    Oh goody, that's settled. Now, after the media has formally introduced us to our new savior, and all the dust of this stupid process has settled, we might begin to hear what actually matters coming from Labour. What the fuck are they going to do?

    On a side note, something that I've long felt once more raises its head. I no longer have an electorate representative. I voted for Shearer to do what's right by my electorate, but now he's going to be far too important and busy for any of that.

    Not that I'd ever avail myself anyway. I expect the local swimming pool that has been slated almost as long as national broadband, will end up being built by the headmaster of the local primary school. At least someone has a plan.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8015 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    Now that Shearer has taken the mantle, what better way to bury the hatchet than appointing Cunliffe to shadow finance minister, as predicted by the Sunday Star Times in 1999?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 3896 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    Case in point: have you heard much in the last month about the actual political differences between Cunliffe and Shearer?

    I have not. I specifically asked them, as they invited on Red Alert. Shearer's answer was so vague it was no answer. Cunliffe at least admitted to the question being curly (which it was). Robertson had some much more promising suggestions, and Mahuta actually spoke of specifics. It would seem that the more they refer to policy, the less their chance of leadership.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8015 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to BenWilson,

    Robertson had some much more promising suggestions

    I'm glad you brought up Robertson, who is much liked around here. Can anybody tell me what he stands for? I've been following him for a bit - he's the MP of my neighbouring electorate, was special education spokesperson for some time - and I haven't been able to work it out at all.

    (I'd love a link to his response to your question, I missed it.)

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7315 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie,

    I agree that we're not particularly well served in that regard. Although, free world, anyone should feel open to to set up a robust political periodical if they want. And these days I'd include the blogosphere, PAS, Pundit etc into the wider conversation - especially when you consider how many people read some magazines these days.

    I'm sure you have your reasons for thinking so, but isn't it possible that rather than favouring the right, 'inside baseball' simply favours whichever 'team' has the most charismatic leader, and that could vary from time to time to either side? Because while you might not agree with them, there is such a thing as a serious, knotty political debate around policies promoted by the right too. It's just that at the moment they know it's easier to say, "ohhh look, there's John Key!" I'm sure Don Brash, Lindsay Perigo, and any number of Act followers would feel similarly ripped off by the MSM's shallow focus.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1121 posts Report Reply

  • Damian Christie, in reply to BenWilson,

    I voted for Shearer to do what’s right by my electorate, but now he’s going to be far too important and busy for any of that.

    I always assume anything that needs to be done in my area will be done by the council. Those other folk are all too busy down in Wellington trying to defeat each other's plans for global domination. :)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1121 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    (I'd love a link to his response to your question, I missed it.)

    The whole thread is not very long. It gets silly at the end.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8015 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    completely overlooks the material conditions that underlie them (including the issue of class), makes governing less important than personalities,

    Yep, this is a huge problem, vote for Summer!

    Since Dec 2006 • 2468 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Damian Christie,

    I'm sure you have your reasons for thinking so, but isn't it possible that rather than favouring the right, 'inside baseball' simply favours whichever 'team' has the most charismatic leader, and that could vary from time to time to either side?

    Yes, but it constrains political debate across the board, and I think it's a far greater constraint on the side that places a greater emphasis on the power of politics to transform society - which, I think we can probably agree, is the Left.

    And by the way the degree in which I identify the Left with the New Zealand Labour Party is... small.

    Although, free world, anyone should feel open to to set up a robust political periodical if they want.

    I assume that you are fully aware of the irony of advocating a free-market solution to this problem

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7315 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Damian Christie,

    nek-level-freemason shit

    Oh, I didn’t know about nek- level. Was still on nek-minnit.

    And +1 with Gio too.The creep is here.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5693 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Damian Christie,

    I always assume anything that needs to be done in my area will be done by the council. Those other folk are all too busy down in Wellington trying to defeat each other's plans for global domination. :)

    Me too, which is why I find electorates to be a strangely archaic idea. If they want people to be able to randomly contact them for help, then the party could put offices wherever they like, whether they win or not. In what way is Shearer (whose office is further from me than Cunliffe's) uniquely empowered to help me if I've got some strange dispute that defies all other processes?

    I lived in Mt Albert, only a 1 min walk from Clark's office, for 5 years, never saw her even once. The only time her little building was of any note was the night that Tim Selwyn lobbed an axe through the window of it, and was sent to prison forthwith. Not democracy's finest hour in NZ.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8015 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    a greater emphasis on the power of politics to transform society - which, I think we can probably agree, is the Left.

    Transform society for the better. The Right has been 'transforming' society for decades.

    But that probably didn't need to be explicity stated here...

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2292 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to BenWilson,

    The 'burbs should all get a local pool. Dam the ponies. All kids need to know how to swim.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5693 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to BenWilson,

    The whole thread is not very long. It gets silly at the end.

    That. Yes, I had seen that, but you didn't ask him a question about his politics, you asked him a process question. The media are fairly good at covering process, I have no major quarrels there.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7315 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Damian Christie,

    Treating politics as a sporting contest alongside rugby and cricket *does* favour the right, because it encourages people to disregard the issues and just vote for "their team" or the "smiley guy" (as if it was the RWC entertainment rounds and they pick Narnia cos they've got a cool flag).

    If people actually thought about actual issues and how it impacted them, the NACT vote would be a lot smaller - the 1%, and those with a delusional aspiration to that status.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4209 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    Yes, I had seen that, but you didn't ask him a question about his politics, you asked him a process question.

    I'm not entirely sure there's a major distinction. The way in which a political party chooses its people is a very political question. He had every opportunity to suggest that he favored a more democratic process than the conclave we have just seen the smoke from.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8015 posts Report Reply

  • Isaac Freeman, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    (as if it was the RWC entertainment rounds and they pick Narnia cos they’ve got a cool flag)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narnia_(country)

    The basic rampant lion concept is sound and well-rendered, but red on green is a terrible combination and it needs a lot more contrast to be legible from a distance. Completely hopeless for the colour-blind.

    I give it a three out of five.

    Christchurch • Since Feb 2007 • 127 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    the 1%, and those with a delusional aspiration to that status.

    Isn't it part of the point of a capitalist society that those with said delusional aspirations make up rather a lot of it?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 196 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    We do have a coat of arms, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coat_of_arms_of_New_Zealand
    (heh Sinister Supporter).
    The whole leader thing has got me thinking about out of date leaders, one person party leaders, opposition party leader, governor general, leader of the house, SOE CEO, then I got bored.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2468 posts Report Reply

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