The Dim-Post

May 26, 2015

Valence bitches

Filed under: Uncategorized — danylmc @ 8:39 am

Here’s the non-bias corrected aggregate of the polls:

nzpolls20150526

Here’s what National were talking about this time eight years ago, when they were in opposition:

The state of Lake Hawea reported in weekend media shows the country is still facing a serious hydro-power shortage this winter, says National Party Energy spokesman Gerry Brownlee.

“Contact says it is very likely that Lake Hawea will have to be drawn down to its lowest level in 26 years just to maintain power supplies.

“The Electricity Commission – which has the say in determining if the lake can be drawn down below its 338m minimum operating level – now has to state if that is in fact its determination.

“If so, that would be confirmation that New Zealand is currently in a crisis situation.

“Overall, New Zealand’s hydro-lake levels are at just 56% of capacity. The Labour Government’s attitude seems to be that with the recent rains the risk of blackouts this winter has receded.

And:

Figures obtained by the National Party show the number of times hospitals are being forced into ‘Code Red’ because they can’t cope with patient demand is on the increase.

“Despite the billions of extra funding and the thousands of extra bureaucrats – our health services continue to lurch from one crisis to the next. Now the public is discovering that our hospitals are having troubling coping even before the winter flu season starts,” says National’s Health spokesman, Tony Ryall.

National has received information under the Official Information Act which shows that Capital and Coast Health in Wellington has had more ‘Code Reds’ more frequently this year than last.

“And that’s before the winter crop of illness strikes.”

The figures show there were 10 ‘Code Reds’ at Wellington Hospital in February this year and six in March. Last year, numbers peaked at six in the months of September and November.

And:

The Labour Government’s admission that it is losing the war against methamphetamine can in a large part be sheeted home to the fact that Labour has failed to do anything substantial to tackle gangs, says National’s Justice & Corrections spokesman, Simon Power.

Police Minister Annette King admitted today that strategies to combat the billion-dollar trade in ‘P’ are not working.

“This should come as no surprise to anyone, considering their failure to act on gangs for the past nine years. And even now they are still backing off a number of proposals to tackle gangs.”

Labour’s recent press releases are here. The difference is stark. National attacked the competency of the government to govern. Overflowing hospitals! Gangs running the streets! Power crisis! While Labour constantly attacks the morality and character of the government. Broken promises! Key is blaming his new tax on a fruit-fly! National is kicking hard-working whanau!

Voters get that the opposition parties don’t like the government. But they also don’t give a shit because as far as they can tell the government are governing things pretty well. Why would they change?

45 Comments »

  1. Labour’s caucus is stacked full of lazy, over the hill defenders of their neo-liberals legacy in safe electorate seats. Their power grows with every diminishing election result. Its a death spiral unless someone takes the bull by the horns and cleans out the Rogernomes.

    Comment by Sanctuary — May 26, 2015 @ 8:56 am

  2. Sanctuary, you’re just pissed you now have to defer to Martyn Bradbury as the leading theoretician of the left, the Great Helmsman of the progressive cause, following his Ponytailgate triumph over the evil John Key and the left’s dramatic rise in the polls…..

    Comment by Tinakori — May 26, 2015 @ 9:11 am

  3. What do the orangish diamonds at zero and below represent?

    And I agree with Sanctuary, Labour seems stacked with old guard time servers (and have been since 1999). I’ll stick to voting Green.

    Comment by Conrad — May 26, 2015 @ 9:18 am

  4. And I agree with Sanctuary, Labour seems stacked with old guard time servers (and have been since 1999). I’ll stick to voting Green.

    Not falling for the charms of Sanc’s current man-crush then?

    Comment by Joe W — May 26, 2015 @ 9:34 am

  5. @Conrad – those are mouse-over “events” in the interactive version (e.g. Budget). They should probably be removed from the png version, but it’s quite possible the script crashes if that happens.

    Comment by pete — May 26, 2015 @ 9:36 am

  6. Personally, I would like to see a term limit policy adopted by Labour designed to clear out the old guard. If they vow to stand as independents, expel them and use the publicity to clearly explain new, populist policies that attack neoliberalism. This of course pre-supposes that Labour can develop a modern, coherent ideological statement of intent, instead of relying on confused managerialism wrapped up in neoliberalism inside poor performance.

    Comment by Sanctuary — May 26, 2015 @ 9:38 am

  7. If they vow to stand as independents, expel them and use the publicity to clearly explain new, populist policies

    What on God’s green earth makes you think that the media interest, when an MP is expelled from their party, would focus on policy?

    Comment by Phil — May 26, 2015 @ 10:18 am

  8. While Labour constantly attacks the morality and character of the government.

    Which is in keeping with virtually every left-wing blogger and commentator in the country, as well as the vast majority of posts, articles and commentary that I’ve read on overseas media sites such as The Daily Kos, Democratic Underground, Huffington Post, The Nation, MotherJones, NYT, The Guardian…..

    What you describe has been increasingly the default stance of the Western left over at least the last decade, whether it presents in the screaming, bug-eyed fashion of Bradbury or the smooth, snarking sophistry of Public Address.

    And then there’s academia.

    It’s no surprise to me that the political representatives have grown to resemble these crowds of activists, screamers and chatterers. The Labour Party circa 2015 is a weird amalgam of ancient barnacles who simply followed in the slipstream of Roger Douglas because they’d run out of ideas themselves as long ago as the early 1980’s, and young risers who know no other argumentative approach than to constantly demonise their political opponents as scumbag human beings, (explicitly when angry, implicitly when calm) – and the Greens are little better.

    Comment by Tom Hunter — May 26, 2015 @ 10:31 am

  9. I don’t know, Tom
    I’m certainly biased but the GP seems pretty policy centric to me, certainly in comparison to the NZLP.

    Comment by Gregor W — May 26, 2015 @ 10:38 am

  10. What you describe has been increasingly the default stance of the Western left over at least the last decade, whether it presents in the screaming, bug-eyed fashion of Bradbury or the smooth, snarking sophistry of Public Address.

    It’s hard not to think there’s some connection with that and the polls although I’m not sure the small number of people involved in that aspect of social media has much of an effect.

    It could be just a symptom of a broader difference between the I’m Morally Superior Left and the I’m A Pragmatic Manager of the Economy Right.

    I’ve thought about it for a while now and really haven’t come to any conclusion but the disconnect between the liberal/left twitter/blogosphere and the rest of the population is quite marked.

    Comment by NeilM — May 26, 2015 @ 11:18 am

  11. I think you’ve nailed it, Danyl.

    Sadly, I think that most people expect politicians/governments to lie and cheat, so it’s of no surprise and little consequence when they do – I agree with you that what they really want is competence and they’re not getting that from Labour atm.

    I also think most people do generally dislike demonisation of opponents and don’t take opposition parties seriously who do – the opposition has been crying wolf since 2008 and the public have switched off.

    Comment by RHT — May 26, 2015 @ 11:47 am

  12. I also think most people do generally dislike demonisation of opponents

    If you ask a focus group, they will say that negative/attack advertisements are bad, and they don’t like them, and all the other things a policy-centric activist would want to hear.
    Then, when you delve deeper into what resonates in the subconscious and discover what an individual identifies as the key issues for them… it’s the exact stuff that the attack ads put forward.

    My impression of where Labour is going wrong is that their negative framing can be equally applied to all politicians. They haven’t found a National-specific issue that cannot also be applied to Labour.
    Attacking National’s trust and competency will never be as effective as ad that suggests the local congressman with ties to solar power wants to shut down the Philadelphia naval shipyard.

    Comment by Phil — May 26, 2015 @ 12:10 pm

  13. Personally, I would like to see a term limit policy adopted by Labour designed to clear out the old guard.

    The last time that happened was the Lange-Douglas ascendancy, with the expulsion of the ‘old guard’ such as Mary Bachelor who embodied the values of the Kirk era – old-style social justice with an antediluvian attitude to issues such as abortion law reform. Their supposed backwardness on social issues was cynically exploited by the fish & chippers to enable the selection of compliant Rgernomes. If you plan on pulling off something similar these days you’ll need a Garth McVicar in every half-winnable seat to split the vote, plus a bit of Stuart Nash-style grooming from the Dirty Politics boys.

    Comment by Joe W — May 26, 2015 @ 12:11 pm

  14. @Phil. Yes, I agree with you on that. Labour’s negative framing reinforces Labour’s negatives and, since it’s all relative, doesn’t harm National.

    National have eaten away on Labour’s traditional positives, health and education, and are streets ahead on the economy, in terms of public perception.

    Comment by RHT — May 26, 2015 @ 12:20 pm

  15. … the small number of people involved in that aspect of social media …

    That set might be small but the attitude exists in a vastly wider sphere of the left, as evidenced by the Labour MP’s themselves that this post is complaining about, and the osmotic pressure goes in the opposite direction.

    Admittedly the following example of such is from within this blog but here’s one of the underlying beliefs, from Gregor W:

    Over time those that control the commanding heights systematically apply regressive pressure to lower the baseline in order to exact profit. They do this via legislation and the state monopoly on violence. Sometimes because the pressure gets to much, the grip has to be loosened for fear of revolt from below, which results in the an enaction of progressive measures in order to dissipate the discontent.

    Alrightee then.

    Now that came at the end of a reasonably pleasant discussion between Gregor and me about why Left-wing parties are not getting much traction in the West in recent elections, and it’s very calm and reasonable in its delivery. But in the substance of ideas it seems little different from what Sanctuary or Bradbury believe.

    Given that basic (and fundamentally Marxist) belief, the only difference between being called a “neoliberal jihadist” by one left-winger and “Those” by another (and I’m assuming that I’m being elevated to such lofty heights of oppressordom in the first place: the sneer that one is merely another unwitting dupe is surely waiting in the wings of such a debate) is that the former comes from people utterly lacking the self-awareness required to not appear as unhinged loons.

    But are the resulting policies really going to be much different in how they’re packaged and sold to voters, and is the attitude towards the voters going to be really that different? The left-wing party supposedly more inclined to policy, substantive criticism of the government, and less inclination to making holier than thou condemnations of right-wing opponents is the party on 10% in the polls.

    Comment by Tom Hunter — May 26, 2015 @ 12:56 pm

  16. The left-wing party supposedly more inclined to policy, substantive criticism of the government, and less inclination to making holier than thou condemnations of right-wing opponents is the party on 10% in the polls.

    Quite. The left have policy problems, or marketing problems. Let’s assume that neither the Greens or Labour want significant reinvention, however.

    Does someone make better running shoes than Nike? Sure. Does that brand sell more running shoes? No. This for a number of reasons, but principally because Nike is better at getting its products in front of people and connecting them to meaning that they identify with.

    Comment by Fraud — May 26, 2015 @ 1:28 pm

  17. @Tom – To be clear, I’m using “commanding heights” in the Marxist sense, so unless you hold voting or capital control over a large enterprise or bank for instance, then no, you are not representative.

    Also, I’m not proposing this notion from a specifically left wing perspective (other than using the handy phraseology), more attempting to capture the characteristics of the interactions between capital, people and politics.
    I would like to think that these characteristics and tensions don’t really change whether you’re a radical socialist, a radical libertarian or somewhere in between, but rather that your perspective on and response to those facts does.

    Which goes back to my earlier supposition that “just enough” and “reasonable baseline” are pretty much two sides of the same coin until some pressure from above (capital) or below (labour) adjusts that expectation. Then one side or the other feels excessively aggrieved and you have problems.

    Comment by Gregor W — May 26, 2015 @ 1:28 pm

  18. I agree your argument makes sense Danyl, the problem is there is no way to prove it with the data publicly available. The latest Roy Morgan poll asks “If a New Zealand Election were held today which party would receive your party vote?” It doesn’t ask why. People’s behaviour is so complex: drawing a line between two dots and claiming that’s why Labour is sucking is a big call.

    The only interesting thing in the Roy Morgan poll is that they also include a government confidence rating, but it’s not that helpful either – Is NZ heading in the “right” or “wrong” direction? – and is about the same as when National was reelected.

    Do Labour and the Greens privately poll people on these kind of questions or is just National?

    Comment by Seb Rattansen — May 26, 2015 @ 2:22 pm

  19. Things will look a bit different when Key’s rockstar economy drowns in its own vomit (TM)

    Comment by richdrich — May 26, 2015 @ 2:48 pm

  20. So the conclusion is Labour were rubbish in government allowing the Nats plenty of easy targets and now Labour are rubbish in opposition as well. Bit useless all round hence the 25% polling figure.

    Comment by David — May 26, 2015 @ 2:55 pm

  21. “Things will look a bit different when Key’s rockstar economy drowns in its own vomit (TM)”

    And there you have it – Exhibit A, richdrich

    Comment by Tinakori — May 26, 2015 @ 3:01 pm

  22. “Exhibit A, richdrich” –

    the thing is, the nats havent been shy of being utterly condescending, nasty and vicious for years – but for some reason much more benign (if not sometimes a bit exciteable) criticism from the left is frowned upon

    have we all forgotten “her husbands a homo” “feminazi” all the way through to whale oil and now glucina? How many years is that?

    so why do the left constantly get put on the naughty step and then generally derided and called names (theres plenty of that in these comments alone) – when the right get away with it every which way on any given day?

    im not saying that some people on the left dont get a bit carried away at times, and im no fan of the bradbury style – but i do think this idea that the public arent going for labours attacks because the public dont like or support such attacks just isnt supported by any sort of factual analysis. Unless were all going to pretend that the nats are saints these days or something

    Comment by framu — May 26, 2015 @ 3:29 pm

  23. More importantly, is the title missing a comma?

    Comment by Gregor W — May 26, 2015 @ 3:30 pm

  24. Things will look a bit different when Key’s rockstar economy drowns in its own vomit (TM)

    Sure, Never let a crisis go to waste and all that.

    Or when he simply quits, probably after winning the 2017 election and achieving his final bucket list of bettering Holyoake’s win/loss record. This assumes that Key’s not got his eyes on Seddon’s record as well; 2021 being beyond belief in this day and age. There’s National and then there’s Key, and when he’s gone the populist glow will depart with him.

    Of course that means waiting a long time yet and it’s an awfully negative, hopeless approach.

    On the other hand you could listen to this guy talk about political campaigning. Yes, yes, I know: hobgoblin, The Prince of Darkness, …. yadda, yadda, yadda.

    But just look at the 34 minute mark where he says the following about the great god ‘Policy’ (paraphrasing here):

    I don’t think people vote for policies, for a particular policy. They don’t go into the polling booth saying, ‘Ooo, I really like that policy. I’ll vote for it’.
    But they do vote for what policies say about a candidate or a party and their values and their beliefs and whether the candidate or party are in touch with what matters to you and can relate to the life you lead or the hopes you have for your life.
    So you need to have a good set of policies in the key areas that matter to people that say something about what you believe in, that show that you recognise what people are facing.”

    He also talks about the four-part test he uses to judges whether an issue can be used politically:
    1 – Is an issue salient in society? Is it out there and does it make sense to people when you talk about it? If it’s not then there’s no connection when you.

    2 – Is it also personally relevant to people. People need to see how it relates to them in their lives or relates to something important in their lives.

    3 – Is it capable of being politically differentiated? Why would the voters change to you?

    4 – Is it capable of affecting Point-Of-Sale execution: how people behave in polling place. In other words, in the polling booth, the voter must understand that when they vote for candidate or Party X, “this” will be the positive consequence of me doing this.

    How much of what the Green-Labour parties have been talking about or promoting in policy in the last few years, could be said to really pass those tests?

    Comment by Tom Hunter — May 26, 2015 @ 3:54 pm

  25. “have we all forgotten “her husbands a homo” “feminazi” all the way through to whale oil and now glucina? How many years is that?”

    Framu, I think Key Derangement Syndrome went past Clark Derangement Syndrome in the fast lane quite some time ago and has been accelerating ever since..

    Comment by Tinakori — May 26, 2015 @ 4:48 pm

  26. Framu,

    “have we all forgotten “her husbands a homo” “feminazi” all the way through to whale oil and now glucina?” – Nope, who could.

    “How many years is that?” – It was nine – 1999 to 2008

    “…when the right get away with it every which way on any given day?” – Yeah, for nine years the right were in opposition.

    Now, its your turn. Go for it

    Comment by unaha-closp — May 26, 2015 @ 5:00 pm

  27. “Labour’s recent press releases are here. The difference is stark. National attacked the competency of the government to govern. Overflowing hospitals! Gangs running the streets! Power crisis! While Labour constantly attacks the morality and character of the government.”

    That’s an interesting observation given how many rage-fuelled inferences about nanny states and Helen Clark being ugly also seemed to be going around at the time, whether promoted by National’s unofficial channels or from elsewhere.

    Comment by izogi — May 26, 2015 @ 5:05 pm

  28. “drawing a line between two dots and claiming that’s why Labour is sucking is a big call.”

    @Seb: For better or worse, that’s basically the way Danyl rolls.

    Comment by kalvarnsen — May 26, 2015 @ 7:11 pm

  29. @ izogi: The difference, though, is that “nanny state” is a description of Labour’s policy preferences, not its moral turpitude (or lack thereof), and therefore has more chance of engaging a public who think politicians of all stripes are untrustworthy to start with.

    This reminds me of a guy who (for reasons I no longer understand) I dated when I was younger, who was fond of pointing out that the right thinks the left is misguided, whereas the left thinks that the right is evil. The challenge for the left is expressing their position not as moral outrage, but through a calm policy rationale. I think the Greens have done much better at this than Labour, but do still have a fair hint of that hysterical warrior-of-truth-and-light about them, which limits their appeal to those on the fence.

    As to your other point, John Key didn’t stand up in front of the media with a campaign based on Helen Clark’s physical appearance. The fact that some of National’s supporters decided that was a fun insult to fling around on the internet says more about those individuals than it does about how to win an election.

    Comment by fivehoursnorth — May 26, 2015 @ 7:31 pm

  30. *Is turpitude the right word, or does that mean the opposite? I feel like I’ve used the wrong phrase there. But you all know what I mean.

    Comment by fivehoursnorth — May 26, 2015 @ 7:47 pm

  31. Like no doubt, a reasonable proportion of folk who engage with Dimpost, I work around Govt, and have worked around both administrations. Even when I allow for a mainstream media bias (yes, accept some of you dispute that exists), dirty politics, the funding the Nats have to buy in the likes of Crosby Textor, or buy more advertising during a campaign, or more staff etc, I have come to the view that too great a proportion of Labour MPs, are basically lazy and as thick as pig shit. Now I’m not making the case for Nats man for man being much better, but they don’t need to be. There’s all that hired help they can afford. But Labour, well once you are out of government, sitting their on your own, there’s no money and no help so you’ve got to be really good, and if you aren’t, well it’s going to be laid bare. I’m just not seeing the hard yards being done combined with the smarts – seeing any illustration that key Labour MPs have actually learnt anything, paid any attention at all, to the finer machinery of government, while they were in power – some of them more than once for god’s sake – and come out of government thereby knowing which rocks to look under, and how to do it. As Danyl outlines, it’s not as if the Nats weren’t showing them how it’s done and they couldn’t have done worse even if they only emulated their example.

    Anyway, and that’s just one side of it, without getting into the other dimensions around generating a connection to the public like Tom @24 describes. Little’s conduct in the last few days around super – where he has himself on the ropes and Key doesn’t even have to answer any questions, is an exemplar of my thick as pig shit hypothesis. Say what you like about Clark, she wasn’t stupid, and she did learn. Lange wasn’t stupid either. They mightn’t have been perfect but in terms of serious brain power the Nats of the time met their match, and the likes of Little couldn’t hold a candle to them. I’m worried that Labour are in some kind of death spiral – I mean who of talent out there wants to join a losing team? – having the life squeeze out of them. Businesses that used to flick funding equally, or at least a chunk to Labour to hedge their bets, no longer feel the need (I have personal knowledge of this). At the end of the day, waiting on the tide to turn, or Nats to do something(s) that Labour can exploit as a material step to power, is proving to be a lazy and long term approach to winning power, and at great cost to their constituency.

    Comment by Joe-90 — May 26, 2015 @ 9:20 pm

  32. I think Key Derangement Syndrome went past Clark Derangement Syndrome in the fast lane quite some time ago and has been accelerating ever since..

    Well, that’s your reckon. Evidence?

    It’s now the third term, so we’ll soon find out how these Syndromes compare. Let us know when MPs – no, not the wacky fringe, but MPs, and other prominent party movers and shakers – start parading down the street with placards calling Key and his government “fascist”, and comparing his rule with assorted dictators. Let us know who is the equivalent of Murray McCully, railing against the “sisterhood”. Let us know when Key’s marriage and family is fair game for the Labour leader.

    You might have convenient memory lapses about historical fact, but please don’t assume they are shared.

    Comment by sammy 3.0 — May 26, 2015 @ 9:51 pm

  33. ““How many years is that?” – It was nine – 1999 to 2008”

    so it all stopped once national gained office? – thats incorrect and we all know it

    what im really saying is that its not the negative attacks in and of themselves that the voters dont like – because the exact same thing on steroids is exactly what national have done for years now – and continue to do. Their third party proxie attack machine hasnt gone away

    So its something a bit more nuanced thats turning people off – the who, what, how of the attack, more than just the attack itself

    Comment by framu — May 27, 2015 @ 8:22 am

  34. “Framu, I think Key Derangement Syndrome went past Clark Derangement Syndrome in the fast lane quite some time ago and has been accelerating ever since..”

    Is Key Derangement Syndrome is just the new “PC gone mad”? – a convenient slur that you can sling at any level of criticism no matter how reasonable. (partly due to some vocal lefties giving it a helping hand of course)

    Comment by framu — May 27, 2015 @ 8:28 am

  35. Part of the problem is the left fail to see how much they’re aping the worst of the right re Clark.

    Labour has made attacking Key personally their main strategy. It hasn’t worked but they still continue.

    It’s pretty much endemic though, not confined to the usual suspects. I’ve mostly given up on left wing blogs. Every comment thread just repeats the same old Key is a liar.

    Not sure how this plays out with the broader public but perhaps the partisan nature of blogs pushes out moderate views and they just disengage.

    Comment by NeilM — May 27, 2015 @ 8:42 am

  36. “Labour has made attacking Key personally their main strategy. It hasn’t worked but they still continue.”

    Labour was doing this right back to the “Can you trust John Key??” ads before National was even running the government. (Just a classic Vot for us because the alternative is worse!) Since then it’s slid to repeated “LOOK! LOOK! You can’t trust him! Here’s proof!”, over and over again, and however much truth there might be in this it’s still mostly to find that too many voters simply don’t care about the proof, or something…. or maybe too many people are put off voting at all because they’re sick of everyone, but that could be presumptuous.

    I don’t especially like the National-led government or the way it conducts itself, but I’d be one of the first to agree that it’s probably not going anywhere until the opposition presents itself as a credible alternative.

    Comment by izogi — May 27, 2015 @ 8:50 am

  37. “Is Key Derangement Syndrome is just the new “PC gone mad”? – a convenient slur that you can sling at any level of criticism no matter how reasonable.”

    Nope, it’s just the common phenomenon where the success of a leader drives their opponents crazy. Some National supporters suffered from CDS during Labour’s first term but it diminished dramatically as the gap between the two parties closed after that and Clark was seen not to have superhuman powers. That decline hasn’t happened for Labour yet because so far there is no sign of the gap closing.

    Comment by Tinakori — May 27, 2015 @ 9:20 am

  38. Thanks for explaining the orange dots Pete.

    Joe W was that an oblique reference to Stuart Nash?

    Comment by Conrad — May 27, 2015 @ 9:31 am

  39. “so it all stopped once national gained office? – thats incorrect and we all know it”

    It didn’t work for National. No one can win by attacks alone. In fact during this period National suffered its worst ever electoral result.

    Labour needs to acknowledge the good things that John Key and the right does and commit to preserving them.

    In 2008 National ate a lot of crow – supported the anti-smacking legislation, committed to rescinding the Foreshore & Seabed to allow Maori more rights, backed the Labour plan to bail out finance companies, wouldn’t sell KiwiRail, interest free student loans were okay, Working For Families was to be preserved…

    Compare this to Labour who when having been handed the easiest, softest, totally simple to blast out of the park bit of bi-partisan cooperative legislation – the flag referendum – set about going full septic on National.

    Comment by unaha-closp — May 27, 2015 @ 9:45 am

  40. Joe W was that an oblique reference to Stuart Nash?

    You mean Flick? While the heart has its seasons, it wasn’t so long ago that Sanc was declaring himself up for having Nash’s baby should the opportunity arise.

    Comment by Joe W — May 27, 2015 @ 11:48 am

  41. That decline hasn’t happened for Labour yet because so far there is no sign of the gap closing.

    This is a good point. It’s pretty hard to slag off your opponent when ideologically they are cutting your lunch.
    Probably why Little look so awkward at the moment.

    Comment by Gregor W — May 27, 2015 @ 12:48 pm

  42. “Some National supporters suffered from CDS during Labour’s first term but it diminished dramatically as the gap between the two parties closed after that and Clark was seen not to have superhuman powers. ”

    So people marching in the streets waving swastikas and calling HC a fascist is totally normal and not even slightly deranged? I think your applying a very flexible version of history there

    As others have said – its about the whole package – methods, policy, media, comms – all of it – nationals is slick, sound bitey and they have proxies to roll in the muck for them (shit – even the NZH happily and publicly fabricates for them) – labour cant seem to make up their minds, is stacked with time servers, airs their laundry in public and has to front each and every attack themselves

    Like i said – its not the attacks in and of themselves that are the issue – they are more a symptom of the disease

    Comment by framu — May 27, 2015 @ 1:09 pm

  43. “It didn’t work for National. No one can win by attacks alone. In fact during this period National suffered its worst ever electoral result. ” – don brash?

    they won the 2008 election and have creamed labour ever since then – and a lot of that off blatant attacks on labour and the greens that didnt stop after 2008

    to say that nat lead attack poltics has significantly hurt the nats simply isnt true

    Comment by framu — May 27, 2015 @ 1:13 pm

  44. NeilM “I’ve mostly given up on left wing blogs.”

    let me know what it’ll take to get you off this one

    Comment by mag rod aigh — May 29, 2015 @ 10:04 am

  45. It won’t show up in the polls yet, it won’t really be obvious in public sentiment either, and it certainly won’t come from the lips of his sycophants anytime soon, but John Key is gone come 2017 and he knows it. He doesn’t know whether to resign before then or see it through. If things get too bad, as in many more scandals with the Chinese and the Saudis and so forth, he will probably resign before the next election. That’s what he does, isn’t it? Jumping from cloud to cloud.

    Comment by Daniel Lang — June 3, 2015 @ 2:34 pm


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