dammit. region should be 'reign'.
Kyle, I think one of the many reasons that he was bad for the party 'despite' success is the means by which he acheived that end. The sort of dogwhistle politics Brash engaged in will only ever take you so far before people realise they've been had.
The other side to it is that he has been bad for the party because of the duplicitous and rotten way the campaign was conducted by National. Lack of principles and bullshitting the public is bad for the party, especially when said public finds out.
Yes, during his tenure National doubled their share of the vote, but it was a hollow achievement becase, as is becoming clear, it was built on a web of lies, or a smokescreen, or whatever.
Then of course there is the fact that the rise in National's popularity in the long term has as much to do with Helen Clark and Labour as much as anything National did, or didn't do.
Bassett, Dutton, Mora on National Radio's Panel just now: pathetic. Truly pathetic.
Bassett shamefully repeated the David Irving comparison, and then threw up several smokescreens (e.g. "I'm not a member of the National Party!" - so what?), unchallenged by Mora.
Laughable, if it wasn't so offensive.
how does Bassett continue to score these media gigs after being so utterly discredited? surely a reflection of the clubby nature of media in nz and the fact that no matter how much you manage to rub your name in the mud accountability is nonexistent. carry on camping, eh?
what was most appalling about the nat radio bit was the appalling lies. bassett said the book was based on nothing but stolen emails. ummm, what about the strategy documents, minutes of meetings, faxes, polling information etc?
jim mora said something along the lines that the interest in bassett was because he was formerly a labour person who was providing advice to national. noooo, the interest was because he was pretending to be an independent commentator while providing advice to national. and he was using his column to support stuff that he had apparently helped draft (eg the welfare speech). but there were absolutely no questions along those lines.
no, no. it only seems bizarre if you don't know that Bassett has a Special Free Pass issued by The New Zealand Media Inc., which allows him to Make Shit Up Whenever He Feels Like It.
Tse Ming might be able to point out another one of those lucky pass-holders, if you ask her nicely ;-)
So while there might be some whistleblown material in the book, I would presume that some was literally stolen (as an employee) and leaked to Hager, or to someone else who gave it to him.
Actually one thing that becomes clear as you read the book - and I'm surprised it hasn't been commented on more - is that it's clear Hager didn't get all his leaked/stolen material in one fell swoop.
In July 2005 Hager gave the NZ Herald National Party board minutes from Dec 2004 that refuted public assurances that National hadn't hired the scary Australian consultants Crosby/Textor. But he clearly had material generated later than that too.
Oh, and Bassett. What a jerk. P141 of the book covers his contribution to Orewa II (the welfare speech), which seems largely to have consisted of invective against beneficiaries. It's very hard to square his self-serving performance on The Panel yesterday with the material cited in the book.
I would say the emails, notes and memos came via an ousted MP and his followers. Who else would of had a stronger motive. Hollow Men shine a light on Nationals winning team and they are nothing more than criminals. But the story of who, where and how the information got to Nicky Hager is the book I want to read, New Zealand's Watergate.
Talking of Criminals, the Brothers why were they never charged for their part in the conspiracy, after all they did conspire against the Government in ways that broke the law. It seems if you are a church being a criminal is expectable, even if it means some contradiction, of your morals and standards.
The morals all these people have displayed, the pillars of society, closer to tomb stones really.