Polity by Rob Salmond

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Polity: Labour and the Greens in a tree...

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  • Sacha, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Yes, it only helps where there is an overhang.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    And now it begins. TV3's Paul Henry (what a surprise) brings on failed National Party strategist Michelle Boag and Mr Flakey Loose Wheel "Leftist" Chris Trotter:

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/politics/boag-and-trotter-agree-labour-is-probably-doomed-2016060109#axzz4AMnlEk8e

    Why can't Trotter bother to educate himself about actual red/green coalitions and why does the media keep to running to him as a 'left' political commentator? Is he really that lazy and off the planet? Apparently. I hope Trots gets hammered by the real, practical left for this latest ex cathedra pontification.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 566 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to Sacha,

    For the coalition -- though not for Labour alone, which means they probably won't do it -- it would make strategic sense for Labour to chase electorate votes while Greens chase party votes, thus creating overhang.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1887 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Craig Young,

    Why can't Trotter bother to educate himself about actual red/green coalitions and why does the media keep to running to him as a 'left' political commentator?

    Agreed, though isn't it more than a touch ironic to be making that point in the allocated blogpatch of one of Josie Pagani's most enthusiastic boosters?

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    Josie is at least practical, although I don't always agree with her. Trottersky isn't.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 566 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    But that would have made no difference whatever to the number of Labour or Green MPs, which is entirely determined by the party vote.

    http://www.elections.org.nz/voting-system/mmp-voting-system
    aaah I see - all the electorate MPs are part of the 'party vote percentage' and the 'List MPs' comprise of any shortfall in electorates won.
    So ideally the push has to be on upping the Party Vote - it is ...complicated!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Craig Young,

    Josie is at least practical...

    Practical in the sense of strategically gaming the system to thwart the popular will, in the grand tradition of Michael Bassett and Tony Blair. I'm less than convinced of the "practicality" of, for example, her "get in behind the TPP you ungrateful bastards" schtick.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    Chris Trotter is a defeatist in the classic dictionary definition of the word. His unfailing willingness to accept the inevitability of defeat taints his commentary. The guy never got over the Rogernomics betrayal. We get it. Time for less aging white guys pining for the welfare state of their youth and a few more of the under 25, fire in their belly, frankly communistic leftist young Kiwis I have had the very good fortune to have met recently. Old men living in past? No thanks Chris. Go away.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2212 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    There is a difference between good sense and authentic popular democratic political initiatives and "common sense" nostrums, cliches, prejudices and authoritarian populist attacks on civil liberties and human rights. Remember Gramsci? The "popular will" can be progressive, or it can be deeply reactionary. Sometimes, on different issues, it is both.

    If 'strategically gaming' the system means delivering stable, long-term centre-left government, then I see little wrong with it. As much as it is about values of solidarity and equality, it needs to be about pragmatism. As for Pagani's TPP stance, let's be fair. Who could have predicted the rise of Sanders or Trump before 2015?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 566 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Tom Semmens,

    Chris Trotter.....Go away.

    Congratulations on getting that out without once using the word Chardonnay.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young, in reply to Tom Semmens,

    You're absolutely right. Chris Trotter's main claim to fame is that he wrote a book about NZ trade unionism. Admittedly, it's a very good one, but he has never had prolonged involvement with any major New Zealand political party. He is totally clueless about new social movements outside the union movement, he is ignorant about centre-left developments, such as functioning red/green coalitions in Europe, outside our own national context. Would it have done that much harm to actually bother to educate himself about the latter? Or perhaps Paul Henry and TV3 prefer vague, woolly, unanchored defeatist leftoids?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 566 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Craig Young,

    As much as it is about values of solidarity and equality, it needs to be about pragmatism.

    Which reads to me as a great aphorism for despising those outside of the party system as political amateurs. It's Labour's isolation through contempt for that part of the potential electrorate that's driven them to seek accomodation with the Greens.

    As for the Greens, it was the recognition that they needed to court the goodwill of non-Party members that consolidated them to the point where Labour found them worth dealing with. For example, their vigorous outreach with the no asset sales petition. James Shaw's technocratic style appears much more in line with how Labour does things. We'll see.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C, in reply to Craig Young,

    When Paul Henry started with Mediaworks, after his failed roles in Australia, first having his late night Paul Henry Show, now having his Paul Henry Breakfast show, I thought, any person going on there, to talk about anything political - or for that sake anything sensible, would risk ending in a situation like going swimming in a pool full of sharks.

    Then I was flabbergasted, how not only the likes of Trotter and Pagani showed up there, falling into his traps, but even Green Party and Labour Party leaders and other MPs.

    The whole show is run according to Paul Henry's rules, and his narrative of things to talk about, so it cannot be avoided, to either be labeled a misguided, daydreaming, overly idealistic "leftist", or for the alternative, to be called a mischievous political charlatan from the left, having no credit and no policy to bother with.

    There is little between the two categories, and all those who care about their reputation, their principles and integrity, should for a start not even bother showing up there. Remember the PM has often enough declined to comment on Radio NZ.

    No matter if that would make it appear like a pro government or apologetic government friendly sound chamber, it would at least make it blatantly obvious for the viewers, how damned one sided that show and Paul Henry, the man behind it, are and is. It is such a pro government sound chamber anyway, as it is, why give it any credit of appearing "balanced", when Henry never is?

    The privatisation and selling out of our MSM, and the ones in opposition thinking they gain by even engaging with these ruthless sharks of the types like Gower, they are incompetent idiots, in my view, at least they should be blunt and clear, and tell Paul Henry in his face, he is a biased jerk, no matter whether they never get an invite again.

    As so many fell for the wrongly perceived "opportunity" to at least "get something across" over the MSM, they have basically discredited themselves, which has only reinforced the vicious downward cycle for Labour, and that has also now locked the Greens in at around ten percent.

    But as I remember, even Laila Harre and Hone Harawira showed up on Paul Henry's crap shows, It is hardly encouraging. We really need alternative venues, and alternative media, and while I do not agree with all Bomber Bradbury thinks and says, he has at least made a good move with his Waatea 5th Estate show at 7 pm on week nights, allowing the left and alternative side of politics and social commentary a forum to talk and be heard and seen.

    Akl • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C,

    Re Mr Trotter, he is in my view nothing but a reflective, history loving, part time academic political romanticist, who shows no clear line and ideas that he may have of his own, he is these days fulfilling the role of "commentator" on TV current affairs (at times), on Radio Live and such shows like the one Paul Henry runs. He presents HIS view on events and developments, and they are based on HIS interpretation of similar things in history or what he deems worth noting. I do indeed wonder whether and how much he gets paid for all this.

    It reminds me of the once famous VIPs, being incessantly invited to give a "view" on matters of the day on various "shows" on TV or radio, which may be far distant from what mattered at the actual times and areas in the past, where they may have some vague "expertise" worth offering, it is often not all that current or valid, that "view point".

    As some commented above, indeed, more history reading may be recommended to a fair few within Labour, that is international political history, same as for Mr Trotter and the likes.

    The MSM are themselves so out of touch with the real world, that is most of them, they constantly pull up the same "commentators" and "expert advisors" that they have pulled out of the hat for years if not decades. They do have NO direct link to the ones working at the coal face of social and housing crisis, at least I take pleasure when some do occasionally and actually talk to the man from Mangere Budgeting Services. He knows his work and what goes on, same as some others. While Auckland Action Against Poverty do clearly have their political agenda, they do also have some more people who actually know what goes on in places many others only ever hear about or see, when it is some news item about crime incidents, about homeless sleeping in garages or cars, as they never like to venture out of their leafy suburbs or the malls they frequent on the weekend.

    New Zealand is as much a divided, class separated country as the modern day USA is, all the WINZ and other "social" business is mostly there to pretend we actually care to do something serious about the issues, it is more like bottom of the cliff rescue and survival efforts, or otherwise nothing but social experimenting, in the world's most perfect social engineering lab, which is called New Zealand (isolated by surrounding sea, and also mostly isolated from what goes on in the rest of the world).

    We need some real changes if we want to prepare for the future, most have their heads deep in the sand, or up their dark abdominal channel, I fear.

    Akl • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Moz,

    I suppose what really annoyed me was that he seemed so reasonable in comparison, but in the end has was just "not as bad as other Nats".

    With that I would not disagree. My view is that he actually took an active interest in taking responsibility for the portfolio with some seriousness instead of simply being pushed around by higher-ups in Cabinet all the time. But even then, he still has the standard National Party ideology (with which I disagree), and still did (allegedly) have suspicious interactions with his Department's independent statutory functions.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1139 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young, in reply to Marc C,

    I agree with your excellent analysis of Trots, Marc. However, the problem is that he's lodged there as a pustule while silencing real, practical and informed left political commentary. He needs to be lanced.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 566 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Craig Young,

    However, the problem is that he's lodged there as a pustule while silencing real, practical and informed left political commentary.

    How does that happen? Is he just good mates with the editors and broadcasters, and someone they know they can get cheaply and easily on short notice about any issue to represent "the left"? Does anyone complain to the relevant media organisations that he's a bad representative? Is anyone available to take his place and talk easily and immediately about everything he talks about?

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1139 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to izogi,

    How does that happen?

    Trotter has a great gift for sonorous puff. A bit like the kind of potboiler stuff that Maurice Shadbolt once turned out for coffee table books, with a dash of Desiderata, so that you're tickled into feeling that you've exercised your fine mind by having read him, when you bloody well haven't. He can probably do it with his eyes closed.

    Danyl McLauchlan nailed his style nicely a few years ago.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    Hilarious! And dead on, too. One wonders if we should launch an organised Trotters for Tea campaign (T for termination) and get someone reputable and mainstream on the media- Sue Bradford, Jane Kelsey and Nicky Hager come to mind immediately.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 566 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Johnson,

    Labour and Greens are natural coalition partners in any reasonable persons eyes except the weird world of a handful of primetime political pundits who love promoting scraps that don't exist in order to look personally dynamic.

    New Zealand First carries the potential of taking both major parties over the line under mmp and has had that potential from the get go of mmp. This is a reality we have had for nearly 20 years.

    Yet whenever this obvious scenario is highlighted the celebrity political gossip journalists go apeshit , thinking they have unlocked some amazing secret. Tired of reading the same story over and over again, especially when current govt policy is a disgrace.

    Now the fact that Actzi are so horribly weird and are basically a fat far looney rightwing fantasy party and only really exist because of a terrified A.Gibbs and his fear of poor people getting a fair playing field means Nat gets to easily gobble up all the mmp right wing vote that fractured under Bill English 2002 .

    It makes it look stronger than they actually are , its still a podgy caucus full of incompetence , saved by the worldclass winking and smiling of a currency trader and the weirdness of a shortsighted Peter Dunne and his ability to lock out the party that gave him his political career in the first place.

    The Nats cross the line just, through these two gentlemens arrangements, not really parties so much as instruments of ego and stagnation. It's a sad affair to see National crippling our major city and all the other economic disasters it is slowly letting foster, but its a non story to write about how mmp promotes natural logical alliances.

    hamilton • Since Mar 2016 • 98 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Tom Johnson,

    United fact…

    gentlemen …. of ego and stagnation.

    At least they never get enough party votes to bring more of their ilk into Parliament, it would be good to get rid of both of them, and also to woo the Maori Party away from the Overlords, they can’t see a truly inclusive future with the Nats can they?
    Surely even Winston Peters wouldn’t want to make the country suffer another term of National’s self serving, spirit crushing hegemony (or is that hedge money) if it was within his power to join a posse to ‘head them off at the pass’?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Johnson, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Yep, the key word here is "suffer". People are suffering.

    Who took the hit for the GE?. The poor. There are sizable chunks of the electorate who felt nothing from it's bust up , ironically the classes most associated with the banking programmes that caused the collapse.

    What did John Key sacrifice for the rebuild? Nothing, absolutely nothing. It's time to admit the weight of the following stagnation is being taken solely by those who can least afford it, in fact pathetically John Key gave himself a tax cut to help with his pool cleaning bill.

    hamilton • Since Mar 2016 • 98 posts Report Reply

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