Espiner on Goff

January 27th, 2010 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

Colin Espiner blogs:

So, it seems, is . Labour’s leader has issued a ringing endorsement of his own abilities today at Labour’s caucus meeting in Auckland.

“You’ll have to put up with me for a couple more years,” he told reporters this morning before Labour’s traditional vote on the leadership, which has returned both himself and deputy Annette King.  “I think it’s a recognition that the leadership team they’ve got is the best team they could hope for.”

Bloody hell. Talk about damning with faint praise. I can almost see Labour’s next election slogan now: “Phil Goff: The best Labour has to offer.” Or maybe “Goff – there’s really no one else.” It’s almost as bad as Dunedin’s “It’s all right here” or Hastings’ “Take a fresh look”.

Heh. Who is going to be first with the photoshop?

Mind you, it’s probably not Goff who has to worry much this year. As he says himself, there really isn’t any alternative. As long as he can keep the Government honest and score a few points during 2010, he’ll still be there at the end of the year.

Yep, as the alternatives are worse.

No, I’m starting to think it’s our prime minister who has his work cut out this year. When even the Right-leaning business publication the National Business Review starts telling National to get on with the job, you know that the tolerance of National’s natural constituency for its steady-as-she-goes approach is coming to an end.

To be fair to Key and National, it does have some major plans this year, ranging from tax reform to the Whanau Ora policy of allowing private providers (mostly Maori) into the provision of welfare. It’s got national standards to implement in education, energy sector changes to complete, the legal aid system to overhaul, and the Foreshore and Seabed Act to repeal and replace.

But there’s a difference between planning things and actually implementing them, and that’s going to be the litmus test of this administration this year. In 2009 Key proved himself to be a political manager almost of Helen Clark’s calibre. In 2010, we’ll get to see whether he can match her in getting things done as well.

A fair call. People do want to see progress, and a sense of direction.

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8 Responses to “Espiner on Goff”

  1. Pete George (21,831 comments) says:

    People do want to see progress, and a sense of direction.

    An understatement, a growing chorus is shrilling that tinkering is “ain’t going to cut it”.

    Apart from those of course that realise it could affect their bottom line, and only want things that won’t affect them to be reformed. That is the biggest potential problem along with too much “steadyness”.

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  2. lofty (1,295 comments) says:

    If the best that Labour has to offer is the current serving, then the Nats do not have a problem.
    I cannot help but notice as an interested observer, that the Nats have indeed made considerable progress in the last year, steady as she goes with incremental progress, seems to be fine from my perspective.
    The Nats have a large agenda to implement and it cannot be done overnight, and I think most electors understand this.
    I have to say that the “bonfires of right wing politics” are not exactly flaring, for better or for worse.

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  3. beautox (408 comments) says:

    Reminds me of the NZ slogans that Murray had on his wall on The Conchords : “New Zealand, not as bad as you think”

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  4. Pete George (21,831 comments) says:

    Our attention should be on “National, probably going to do something about tax”.

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  5. freethinker (648 comments) says:

    Yes, and what Goofy doesn’t want and voters do want is a reduction in state spending/waste so re arranging the taxchairs on the limping ship NZTitanic is less relevant except were the tax changes produce increased productivity and more encouragement to work/produce than drawing a benefit. What does Key/English want – the jury is still out but the wrong result will be detrimental to NZ & National.

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  6. big bruv (12,388 comments) says:

    There is an alternative, one that would see middle NZ flocking to him in droves.

    Kelvin Davis.

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  7. lastmanstanding (1,154 comments) says:

    BTW That Whanau Ora looks like a black hole to pour citizens taxes into to enrich the favoured few.

    I bet we dont see a rigorous and robust governance model.

    It will be a case of Trust us we know what we are doing. Contracts will be let money will change hands there will be no KPIs and no accountability.

    And no results. Betcha.

    I hope for all our sakes Im wrong but the old sniff o meters at the top end of the scale and over the past 35 years its been right more than wrong

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  8. simo (150 comments) says:

    Colin seems to have forgotten the checklist for what was completed by the Nats in 2009.

    Kelvin Davis = Chavez dont go there Big Bruv, middle NZ would have to have a frontal lobotomy to accept him as anything but another tax and spend socialist. We are over these Marxists, take a deep breath before the fuckers tax it and move on and dont give ‘em any air, thats it, you can do it!!!

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