The Herald has brief essays on the Labour leadership struggle by various supporters of the Shearer/Cunliffe camps. Labour Party member David Hawkins endorses Cunliffe and writes of his noble, titanic struggle against the implacable force for evil that is David Shearer:
This battle for Labour’s leadership is a choice between obsolete zero-sum politics and a progressive aspirational social democracy . . . Labour MPs must decide: change or irrelevance.
Man, the National Party must just how with laughter when they read shit like that. Labour’s ‘battle’ is not to pick the right leader: it’s to pick a leader without the party dividing into vicious camps who despise the other, with the eventual victors ruthlessly demoting the losers, who then spend three years undermining their hated foes.
The stakes here are pretty low. Cunliffe will probably be an adequate leader. Shearer might not turn out so well, but might also be an exceptional leader. So that’s a risk the party needs to assess in light of its recent loss, not a Manichean battle of good against evil. Will there be vast policy differences depending on the outcome? Since Cunliffe and David Parker were the principle architects of Labour’s current policy package, I’m guessing no.