The Dim-Post

November 9, 2015

Notes on the Labour AGM

Filed under: Uncategorized — danylmc @ 6:23 am
  • I think Labour will be very pleased with their coverage over the weekend. Little’s speech seems to have gone down well. The bits of it I saw on the news didn’t connect with me, but perhaps I’m not the target market? Anyway, it all went smoothly which is a contrast to the Cunliffe years (year?) when everything was always a mess.
  • I’m not upset to see them abandon their Capital Gains Tax policy. When they’re in government they can simply modify National’s half-baked CGT to make it more comprehensive.
  • Bomber was at the conference! He wrote:One of the challenges facing the Labour Party is the ability to sell a united opposition, this Conference has shown how difficult that approach will be.Beyond all the nice words in public about the Greens and NZ First there are private mutterings. At this Conference, Labour were going to tell New Zealand who their preferred political partners would be so that there is no confusion about what form of coalition government could be formed post the election, but those plans of transparency were put on hold when the Greens and NZ First refused to agree to that announcement.

    Inside NZ First, the Ron Mark faction who are closer to National than Labour don’t want to commit and within the Greens, James Shaw doesn’t want to lose the strategic edge he’s created by working with National.

  • I don’t know about New Zealand First but I checked with the Greens and no such approach or proposal was made to them. I guess Labour are still seething about the Red Peak thing and prevailed upon Bomber to write this. It’s not true.
  • It’ll be interesting to see what Little decides to do in Mt Roskill when Goff almost-inevitably wins the Auckland mayoralty next year. A high-profile win in an Auckland by-election is pretty much the best thing that could happen for him. But he’s not a local, and if National ran a strong local candidate and defeated Little in a long-term Labour seat a few months before election year then that would be a catastrophe. Labour seems to be a culturally risk-averse party so I’m guessing he won’t stand.

49 Comments »

  1. I think it more likely Bomber is just making shit up. Dude is a fantasist

    Comment by Pascal's bookie — November 9, 2015 @ 6:36 am

  2. What he said.

    Comment by Sanctuary — November 9, 2015 @ 7:39 am

  3. If the media opinion pieces are any guide, Labour’s main achievement at this conference was to get onside with the various ideological state apparatuses of our MSM.

    Comment by Sanctuary — November 9, 2015 @ 8:01 am

  4. Seem to recall Shearer making a ‘great conference speech’ in 2012, and same with Cunliffe in 2013/14. Didn’t do much for them in the polls. Whereas the number of ‘great speeches’ by Key as National leader can be counted on one hand.
    Think Little’s media interviews were more instructive and they were woeful.

    Comment by Mike — November 9, 2015 @ 8:07 am

  5. I would be surprised if they did not put Michael Wood up in Mt Roskill. He’s well liked, smart, talented, likeable, has policy experience, and has been putting in a lot of community effort representing his local board. His wife is equally talented, which is usually a good sign.

    On the other hand, Labour would love to have a South Asian as an MP, and another smart and talented woman (it is 2015 after all). Priyanca Radhakrishnan has just moved to Auckland and if they’re feeling confident about victory they could easily slot her in. She’s much more useful to Labour in Auckland than she was in the Wairarapa.

    Comment by Kawakawa — November 9, 2015 @ 8:53 am

  6. Labour’s main achievement at this conference was to get onside with the various ideological state apparatuses of our MSM.

    That’s the main function of democracy, right? I think that a lot of journos are going sour on National after being media-handled a little too extensively. Having your OIAs delayed for months does that.

    Little didn’t charm Gower by refusing to answer his “TPPA: yes or no?” question. I don’t think that’s a problem. It’s better to be respected than loved, and showing backbone does that. He’s not yet Clark-like, but he has enough of that character to be useful.

    Comment by Kawakawa — November 9, 2015 @ 9:01 am

  7. Bomber is not a friend of Labour. He is not working for Labour, informally or otherwise.

    I would guess that Bomber is trying to pressure Labour to commit away from NZF, and the Greens away from National, by naming and shaming who he perceives as the ‘right-wing’ of those parties. Given how devoutly centrist the conference was, he might also be trying to highlight how right-wing Labour is going.

    Comment by Onsos — November 9, 2015 @ 9:39 am

  8. Surely as the left’s leading intellectual and strategist Bomber is above the tedious humdrum reality of “facts”

    Comment by Tinakori — November 9, 2015 @ 10:20 am

  9. he might also be trying to highlight how right-wing Labour is going

    I think their focus on “jobs, jobs, jobs” is the correct one.

    It allows them to secure the base by looking after workers, take the middle class by talking about middle class wages, step away from being defined by the out of work underclass, take the economy as their ground, remind those with short memories (journos and the public) of how they ran an economy with just 3.9% unemployment, and present themselves very seriously on the major shifts in work being brought on by global competition and increasing computerisation/robotocisation of all professions. And importantly, it fits into a slogan so simple a five year old can understand it.

    Comment by Kawakawa — November 9, 2015 @ 10:24 am

  10. > I think their focus on “jobs, jobs, jobs” is the correct one.
    > It allows them to … take the middle class by talking about middle class wages

    Speaking as a National voter, good luck with that.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 10:32 am

  11. To elaborate on my above: When you say ‘creating jobs’, the middle class hear ‘taxing us more in order to pay more public servants to do SFA’.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 10:34 am

  12. “more public servants to do SFA”

    yeah. like teachers. and police.

    Comment by petronious — November 9, 2015 @ 10:49 am

  13. (a) Do you hear the middle class calling for more teachers and police, or for the existing ones to be paid more? I don’t.
    (b) In any case Little didn’t talk about teachers or police. He talked about preferring local suppliers for Government procurement.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 10:59 am

  14. When you say ‘creating jobs’, the middle class hear ‘taxing us more in order to pay more public servants to do SFA’.

    Or, perhaps they’ll hear “the Government won’t be paying Chinese workers to build carriages for the Government’s trains at the cost of closing Hillside workshop at the cost of dozens of jobs”. Because, as a National voter, you’re unlikely to be listening very closely to what actually is being said.

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 11:00 am

  15. When you say ‘creating jobs’, the middle class hear ‘taxing us more in order to pay more public servants to do SFA’.

    There’s about 270,000 jobless, or 40,000 more jobless than a year ago. I’d imagine the middle class would love to have some of these people in work because government revenue would increase and the welfare bill would decline.

    http://www.berl.co.nz/economic-insights/jobs/employment-and-skills/jobs-up-but-growth-slowing-jobless-up-and-increasing-faster/

    Comment by Ross — November 9, 2015 @ 11:01 am

  16. He talked about preferring local suppliers for Government procurement.

    Hey! You did listen!!

    So how does that then turn into ‘taxing us more in order to pay more public servants to do SFA’?

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 11:02 am

  17. > Or, perhaps they’ll hear “the Government won’t be paying Chinese workers to build carriages for the Government’s trains at the cost of closing Hillside workshop at the cost of dozens of jobs”. Because, as a National voter, you’re unlikely to be listening very closely to what actually is being said.

    I think you’ll find most center voters outside Dunedin are pretty unconcerned about Hillside closing.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 11:03 am

  18. I’d imagine the middle class would love to have some of these people in work because government revenue would increase and the welfare bill would decline.

    Don’t worry – that problem’s being sorted by getting autistic young people and paraplegics to prove annually that they still are unable to work. For the Win!

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 11:04 am

  19. >> When you say ‘creating jobs’, the middle class hear ‘taxing us more in order to pay more public servants to do SFA’.

    > There’s about 270,000 jobless, or 40,000 more jobless than a year ago. I’d imagine the middle class would love to have some of these people in work because government revenue would increase and the welfare bill would decline.

    The point you are missing is the distinction in people’s minds between ‘a real job’ and ‘make-work’. Shifting people from the dole to make-work is not seen as an improvement. The typical center/right view is that the Government is not good at creating ‘real jobs’. I realise you probably don’t agree with it, I am not sure I agree with it myself, but plenty of people do.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 11:06 am

  20. >> He talked about preferring local suppliers for Government procurement.

    > Hey! You did listen!!

    I read the transcript.

    > So how does that then turn into ‘taxing us more in order to pay more public servants to do SFA’?

    In the confused minds of the middle classes. Deal with it.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 11:06 am

  21. I think you’ll find most center voters outside Dunedin are pretty unconcerned about Hillside closing.

    But you get enough “Hillsides” in enough places and suddenly a lot of the country begins to look like … Northland. Oddly enough, “center voters” there did turn out to care about things like “jobs” and related matters.

    But, hey – don’t worry … 7%+ unemployment really isn’t a big deal when JK stands beside Richie with the cup. That’s what center voters really value.

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 11:07 am

  22. > 7%+ unemployment really isn’t a big deal when JK stands beside Richie with the cup. That’s what center voters really value.

    I think you’re right, in that the World Cup result is likely to substantially support the popularity of the current Government.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 11:11 am

  23. Interesting to think about what we mean by middle class here. If median household income is about $75k, which will often be spread across multiple earners, then I don’t think Labour is likely to be increasing taxes for much of the middle class. In fact, increasing middle class wages to cope with the cost of educating the kids, looking after parents in their old age, and helping your kids buy a home (if they ever get to the point when they realistically might) seems to me quite likely to strike a chord. Increasing taxes for people with incomes over (say) $100k isn’t really hitting the middle class. It’s hitting the wealthy.

    Comment by Dr Foster — November 9, 2015 @ 11:19 am

  24. > increasing middle class wages to cope with the cost of educating the kids, looking after parents in their old age, and helping your kids buy a home (if they ever get to the point when they realistically might) seems to me quite likely to strike a chord

    It certainly would strike a chord. The problem is that most people around the median household income don’t believe that they would be materially better off (in after tax terms) under Labour.

    > Increasing taxes for people with incomes over (say) $100k isn’t really hitting the middle class. It’s hitting the wealthy.

    You fail to understand the notion of aspiration. Many middle income households aspire to have a household income above $100K and would like to not be ‘hit’ when they get there.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 11:22 am

  25. most people around the median household income don’t believe that they would be materially better off (in after tax terms) under Labour.

    You seem to know an awful lot about what most people think. We could do away with surveys and just ask you!🙂

    Comment by Ross — November 9, 2015 @ 11:54 am

  26. I could be wrong, but I certainly don’t think Goff’s victory in Auckland next year is by any means assured. Len Brown won twice, mainly because he was facing a divided field on the right and because he has a huge support-base of personal loyalty and affection in South Auckland. He’s been working in that community for decades, and although most other parts of the city prefer his right-wing rivals South Aucklanders supported him en masse. Again, I may be wrong but I don’t think Phil Goff has that kind of strong personal support. Moreover, the C&R has indicated that it is looking for a credible candidate that can unite the right-wing behind it. I think they could win. And Phil Goff does not, after all, have a track-record of unalloyed electoral success.

    The real question, I think, is whether Goff would choose to retire from his parliamentary seat before entering the mayoral campaign, as Lianne Dalziel did in Christchurch. That would look like the principled thing to do (and it might appeal to the people of Mt Roskill who think they deserve a full-time MP), but I suspect it probably won’t happen.

    Comment by Higgs Boatswain — November 9, 2015 @ 12:17 pm

  27. Andrew Little’s too strongly tied to Wellington (maybe Rongotai when Annette King retires), so Michael Wood is the obvious choice for Mt Roskill, instead of trying to win the unwinnable in Epsom.

    And on taxation, George Carlin put it best: “The upper class: keeps all of the money, pays none of the taxes. The middle class: pays all of the taxes, does all of the work. The poor are there…just to scare the shit out of the middle class.”

    Comment by Kumara Republic (@kumararepublic) — November 9, 2015 @ 12:18 pm

  28. Regarding jobs, what if robots and the Internet of Things start displacing middle-class jobs, in the same way they’ve displaced many working-class jobs? The current economic structures, if kept in place, could probably result in an Elysium-style ‘techno-feudalist’ future.

    Comment by Kumara Republic (@kumararepublic) — November 9, 2015 @ 12:23 pm

  29. >> most people around the median household income don’t believe that they would be materially better off (in after tax terms) under Labour.

    > You seem to know an awful lot about what most people think. We could do away with surveys and just ask you!

    Hey don’t feel compelled to rely on my opinion. By all means do the polling.

    But I’m confident that it’s going to say that the majority of middle income people don’t have confidence that they’d be better off under a Labour led government. If they did, we’d have a Labour led government.

    The point I was making, and this is purely my opinion but I’m pretty confident in it, the point I was making is that ‘jobs jobs jobs’ may not turn this state of affairs around. For the reason above, that most don’t believe that State job creation schemes create real productive jobs.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 12:26 pm

  30. Higgs Boatswain – theres also the factor that len was partly elected as a response to the super shitty + banksie, failed to keep that in mind and exposed his weak inner self in (and just before of course) his second term.

    IMO a lot will hinge on just how grumpy AKers are with the super city, and who they consider is at the heart of the problems with it (rodders or len)

    Comment by framu — November 9, 2015 @ 12:31 pm

  31. Antoine: Are you are pollster with access to these specific sorts of questions. or are you just riffing off your opinion of what centrist voters think?

    How about ‘speak for yourself’?

    Comment by Pascal's bookie — November 9, 2015 @ 12:41 pm

  32. > Antoine: Are you are pollster with access to these specific sorts of questions. or are you just riffing off your opinion of what centrist voters think?

    The latter. Feel free to try and prove me wrong, either through a real poll, or by winning the next election based on ‘jobs jobs jobs’.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 12:50 pm

  33. The latter. Feel free to try and prove me wrong, either through a real poll, or by winning the next election based on ‘jobs jobs jobs’.

    The Liberal Party just won the Canadian election with this “make work” policy as one of their central campaign themes: https://www.liberal.ca/realchange/opportunities-for-young-canadians/ And NZ Labour do all sorts of polling and focus grouping – there’ll be reasons why they think that “jobs jobs jobs” may resonate here, too.

    But seeing as all of us here are just dealing in reckonings and no-one ever comes back in later threads and says “I was wrong”, this is probably one of the more pointless activities going.

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 1:10 pm

  34. I think the best move would be putting Adern for Mt Roskill. Has more Auckland clout, well liked etc. Little could then just stand in Rongotai (where he lives) if King either steps down or goes onto the list… But what would I know?!

    Comment by max — November 9, 2015 @ 1:11 pm

  35. > The Liberal Party just won the Canadian election with this “make work” policy as one of their central campaign themes

    Ha yeah, Liberals campaigned on ‘green jobs’, see how well that goes down here.

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 9, 2015 @ 1:22 pm

  36. Danyl, I think your assumption that somehow Labour was involved with planting the idea that the Greens are somehow likely to go with National or that Shaw wants to play them off against each other is absurd. Nobody in the current Labour leadership has any time for Bomber. They remember his games for Cunliffe only too well.

    Comment by RHT — November 9, 2015 @ 2:13 pm

  37. Danyl, I think your assumption that somehow Labour was involved with planting the idea that the Greens are somehow likely to go with National or that Shaw wants to play them off against each other is absurd.

    I took Danyl’s assumption (and implication) to be that Bomber is absurd.

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 3:39 pm

  38. The current poll numbers are close to allowing Andrew Little to lead a coalition into power.

    So how much do Labour want power? Winston looks to hold the key to the Ministers offices . What is the opening bid and where does that leave James Shaw and his band of merry people?

    I like Martyn squared Bradbury stirring – the Left do splintering so well.

    Comment by dave1924 — November 9, 2015 @ 4:12 pm

  39. It’s possible Labour might stumble on a real Auckland housing issue that’s stirring up emotions tather than relying on cooked-up xenophobia.

    Comment by NeilM — November 9, 2015 @ 5:20 pm

  40. ” Len Brown won twice, mainly because he was facing a divided field on the right…..” Huh ? I dont know why people continue to ignore the numbers from the election and try and re-invent history. In 2013 Brown won 47.8% and the divided field was on the left with Minto and Penny Bright getting just 3.5% each. The Slater dark horse Palino with 32% had no hope of winning, even if he had a clear run on his side.
    back in 2010 Brown was within .75% of getting more votes than all other candidates, so please lets put this myth of Brown sneaking in with a low %. His result in both elections was a higher % than nationals party vote !

    Comment by dukeofurl — November 9, 2015 @ 5:46 pm

  41. ” Len Brown won twice, mainly because he was facing a divided field on the right…..”

    In both elections, Brown faced both an actual candidate from “the right” (Banks/Palino) and an imaginary “right-wing candidate who coulda beaten that commie Brown, if only she/he had actually run”. It is this “fact” that Higgs Boatswain, etc refer to.

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 6:56 pm

  42. It’s possible Labour might stumble on a real Auckland housing issue that’s stirring up emotions tather than relying on cooked-up xenophobia.

    Yeah – Labour was SO wrong to suggest that overseas buyers (from China especially) were driving the increase in Auckland housing prices. What sort of idiots would adopt a policy with that as its premise?

    Overseas investors are deserting Auckland’s property market as the Government crack down on foreign buyers works, but experts say asking prices now remain too high for the remaining local buyers.

    Managing director of Strategic Risk Analysis, Rodney Dickens, said the Government changes which came into force at the start of October had worked, driving overseas buyers out of the market.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/73493977/prices-too-high-for-aucklands-cooling-property-market

    Comment by Flashing Light — November 9, 2015 @ 7:06 pm

  43. I was at Andrews speech. It was outstanding. He was outstanding. I was with a friend who was none too impressed by AL before hearing him speak. She is completely sold. If you were at the speech, it would have been impossible not to be truly inspired (unless you were die hard National and then you would be scared). Do yourself a favour Daryl. Listen to the speech from start to finish.

    Comment by anker — November 9, 2015 @ 7:23 pm

  44. You really should do that, Daryl.

    Comment by Lee Clark — November 10, 2015 @ 7:46 am

  45. Ha yeah, Liberals campaigned on ‘green jobs’, see how well that goes down here.

    You realise that Canada has a massive and incredibly dirty oil industry, right?

    Comment by Kawakawa — November 10, 2015 @ 3:30 pm

  46. > You realise that Canada has a massive and incredibly dirty oil industry, right?

    Yep

    A.

    Comment by Antoine — November 10, 2015 @ 3:49 pm

  47. @40, yes you’re quite right – both Brown’s victories were fairly commanding, and in each case in a crowded field. But I think it is also fair to say that Brown was extremely lucky in his choice of (main) opponents, and if C&R are smart enough to put forward someone who isn’t either a divisive egotistical clown (Banksie) or a completely inept no-hoper (Palino), I think they might well win the mayoralty.

    Despite what Flashing Light implies, this is not wishful thinking on my part. I admire Brown, I’m glad he won, and I defended him here when Danyl was arguing that his private indiscretions were a matter of public interest. I sincerely hope that Goff wins the mayoralty (although it would be nice to see a right-winger being flogged for the many failings of the supercity for a change). But my point is that Brown had advantages Goff cannot count on, and it is unwise to assume that Goff will win simply because Brown did. Moreover, greater Auckland isn’t natural Labour territory. Of the twenty Auckland electorates, only seven are held at present by Labour. I think Danyl’s claim that Goff will “almost inevitably” win the Auckland mayoralty is wrong, and it’s a foolish thing to say before we even know who his challengers are likely to be. If indeed he stands, which we don’t know yet either.

    Comment by Higgs Boatswain — November 10, 2015 @ 6:01 pm

  48. “You realise that Canada has a massive and incredibly dirty oil industry, right?”

    One that’s caused long-term political polarisation between Alberta and the eastern provinces.

    Comment by Kumara Republic — November 10, 2015 @ 10:33 pm

  49. Higgs: So far Goff is relying on being the only ‘Left’ mayoral candidate running against multiple ‘Right’ candidates who might trip up each other.

    Comment by Kumara Republic — November 10, 2015 @ 10:35 pm


RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: