How to win friends and influence people

August 23rd, 2011 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

What a train wreck. I hardly know where to start.

MP first blogged:

Have had a gutsful of the white-anting of Labour from both the right and the left of politics.

Then a second blog post:

And on another note, re white-anting; the attempts by the to encroach on Labour territory is also happening in Australia.

The comments flowed quick and fast. Gregor said:

Greens white-anting Labour?

Surely you mean, contesting the same constituency rather than ‘encroaching’, right?

You seriously think you have the unquestioning allegiance of my vote as a worker?

And Sacha:

Is it seriously Labour policy to attack the party’s MMP allies now?

Followed by Curious:

Go look up the definition of democracy Clare, political parties put forward policy to convince voters to vote for them. This isn’t white-anting.

And Me Too:

As a Green Party voter and life-long unionist I am staggered by the suggestion that Labour ‘owns’ the area of labour rights.

Waiting for the justified mocking in the Dim Post blog… Despairing of there ever being a Labour-led government in this country ever again…

Dim-Post has obliged. I’ll come to him later.

Then Idiot/Savant from No Right Turn:

The concept that some votes are Labour’s exclusive “territory” is a perfect example of what is wrong with Labour ATM.

Wake up. There is no Divine Right in democracy. Votes don’t “belong” to your party – you have to earn them. And if you can’t, if other people are doing a better ob of appealing to your traditional constituencies, then you have no-one to blame but yourself.

Chris M:

I’m voting for Greens this year because Labour has failed dismally at representing itself as a viable alternative to National. You’ve broken election advertising/campaigning laws repeatedly, put up what was apparently only the barest resistance to National passing ludicrously bad laws, and to put it simply Phil Goff is a non-entity in the realm of potential leadership.

Then Regan:

I’m just as peeved as the next person that we’re losing votes to the Greens,but I know that politics is a competition and as such Labour has to earn its votes. As a Labour Party member, to make such a blatantly uninformed comment is exactly the reason why we’re doing so poorly in the polls, because Labour MPs are arrogant enough to assume they “own” votes

And Chris Trotter weighs in:

Well, Clare, if Labour really wanted to test the Greens commitment to building (or should that be re-building?) a strong trade union movement, it could simply ask for the Green Party’s support in re-introducing an industrial relations system in which every worker was guaranteed the protection of union membership, including automatic inclusion, at the time of hiring, in an industry-wide agreement setting forth minimum wage-rates and conditions.

Try that one on them. Hell! Try it on your caucus colleagues!

Matthew Dentith:

Really? So the Greens are stealing your rightful votes, are they? I didn’t realise that when I switched away from voting Labour to voting Green that I was being stolen.

Now after this barrage of criticism, from Labour and Green party members and supporters, you might think a conciliatory note would be struck. Instead Curran rips into them:

Listen to you all. Go and knock on some bloody doors will you and stop pontificating. Get down to South Dunedin and see what it’s really like. Foodbanks are empty.
People are desperate.

Yes I am angry and it shows.

Idiot/Savant responds:

Yes, and its terrible. But if you want to do anything about it, you actually need to persuade people to vote for you. Instead, you’re just arrogantly demanding we do, like some medieval king ordering his peasants.

Aaron adds in:

I’ve been fence-sitting between Labour and the Greens for a number of years now and recently took the plunge to become a full member of the Green party. Posts like this show this was the right thing to do.

The Green Party should send Clare some chocolates to thank her for recruiting on their behalf. David comments:

Clare: I am a trustee of a charitable trust that has, this month, raised over $10,000 for those in extreme poverty. I also volunteer for my local Green candidate’s election campaign. So, how about instead of pulling out childish attacks on people who could well be your supporters, you rethink your silly and sanctimonious attack on an ally?

Debbie jumps in:

Way to go Clare, You were the last labour MP I still had any respect for & you write this!? You own me? I’m poor & have always voted Labour so I ‘must’ vote for you now? I can’t make up my own mind? Maybe my mind just isn’t up to the job.

Danyl at the Dim-Post has a post well reading, including screen shots from Twitter. He says:

So I’ll be voting for the Greens this election, as previously stated. I’d like to vote Labour again in 2014 – but it simply wouldn’t be ethical to cast a vote for a party this dysfunctional, so there will have to be a lot of changes before I can switch back.

And getting rid of MPs like Claire Curran will be a big part of that. I’ll be casting my electorate vote for Grant Robertson, because he’s a good MP – but if you live in an electorate like, oh say, Dunedin South I think the best thing you can do for the left is cast your party vote for Labour or the Greens, or whoever, but cast your electorate vote for the National candidate. It won’t impact on the outcome of the election (unless you live in Ohariu) but it will send a message to Labour that if they force poor quality MPs on us in safe seats then they face the risk of losing that seat.

For my 2c worth I’m not that surprised by the blog post. I’ve often observed that most in National think Labour are wrong, but do not think those on the left are evil. However many in Labour believe that those on the right are evil people motivated purely by self interest. The consequence of this, is that they believe that it is treasonous for anyone not to support them in their mission to get rid of the evil right wingers. So if someone from the left criticises Labour, they are seen as traitors.

UPDATE: Also some comments made at Dim Post worth highlighting:

Me Too:

Really, she used to work in PR? Who for – Adidas? Telecom?

Russell Brown:

This is a disastrous blurt from Curran, not so much with the voters at large but with the kind of people who actually might be inclined to put a shoulder to the wheel as she would wish. Gawd.

Max:

I have worked for (in a parliamentary capacity) and door knocked for Labour in the past. But this just makes me mad, and the reason why I will also most likely vote Green.

Newtown News:

This sort of shit makes me yearn for the good old days of David Benson-Pope MP

Danyl again:

What gets me is that Curran thinks that door-knocking in her own electorate is some selfless act of charity that she does out of the goodness of her heart, and makes her a worthy person. Door-knocking is public relations! She does it because she’s the MP for that electorate and she wants to get re-elected to her extremely well paid job! So using it as a pretext to claim the moral high-ground is really repulsive.

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65 Responses to “How to win friends and influence people”

  1. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    I remember commenting earlier in the year about getting out the popcorn and watching this great political entertainment.

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  2. Captain Neurotic (206 comments) says:

    It made for good reading last night!

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  3. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Own goal of the week Clare, right in the backof the net.

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  4. Scott Chris (5,682 comments) says:

    “Schadenfreude” is pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others.

    Actually, if the Greens weren’t such lefties, I’d consider voting for them.

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  5. joe bloggs (126 comments) says:

    This is more entertaining than Cirque de Soleil…

    Reminds me of a link Whale Oil put up a month or more ago to a column by James Delingpole. Delingpole’s comments just keep resonating with me:

    … the sanctimonious fervour of the liberal-left wallowing in a stew of its own self-righteousness …

    … To be on the liberal-left is not to trade in logic or reason or evidence-based argument. Essentially, it is about parading your own moral and socio-political virtue by being seen to express the “right” thoughts on any given subject – and by damning anyone who disagrees with you as a racist/homophobe/LittleEnglander/denier/fill-in-appropriate-noun-here …

    Boy there’s a mouthful!

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  6. Auberon (820 comments) says:

    Does Clare write in those funny short sentences just to amuse me? I like to think so.

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  7. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    John Key isn’t paying her enough, she is such value for money.

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  8. RightNow (6,350 comments) says:

    Infighting on the left? Quelle surprise!

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  9. Inventory2 (9,791 comments) says:

    She shoots; she scores! Of all the SMOG’s (Social Media Own Goals) scored by Labour in the last few months, this one was far and away the most impressive; an absolute doozie! Even when Darien Fenton was sent in by The Goffice to calm things down, she got a serve too:

    Darien Fenton says:
    August 22, 2011 at 7:22 pm

    @T : what’s ugly is the appalling situation for many New Zealand working people.
    @iona – why don’t you get angry at the stuff ups and direct attacks on you from the current government? Yes, be angry, but do something. Get active, get involved, change things

    Iona says:
    August 22, 2011 at 7:37 pm

    @Darien Thank you so much for that patronising assumption. Thank you for assuming that I’m not pissed off at the government – I am. Thank you for assuming that I’m not trying to change things – I am.

    Thank you Darien. Thank you.

    Now that you’re done belittling me, could you please take note of what the 30+ people commenting on this post are saying.

    Ouch!!

    http://keepingstock.blogspot.com/2011/08/clares-monday-smog.html

    As Captain Neurotic notes, it was a great watch last night. And most ironic of all; just a couple of weeks ago Clare Curran was bleating about right-wingers dissing the Labour MP’s on Red Alert. Last night Labour was being savaged by its own in an extraordinary display of public blood-letting.

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  10. Griff (6,263 comments) says:

    All the Right together and laughing at Labour.

    Remember that this will proberbly be National’s problem in the future. If Key leaves you will be fighting each other and splintering just as fast. Toxic buildup kills majoritys. The Greens are a greater enemy that can and will steal votes off the right in time.

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  11. Pete George (21,830 comments) says:

    People give votes, parties don’t “steal” them – but some do seem to take them as if they were their own.

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  12. kiwi in america (2,336 comments) says:

    Trade unionist entitlement mentality run amock! Curran’s old enough to remember compulsory unionism and has come to Parliament via Labour’s favoured route – lefty student activism and union leadership.

    Strangely there are some in Labour’s ranks who still don’t get MMP – comments like this reveal a striking ignorance of modern political strategies in an MMP environment.

    An intra-left stoush like this must have Key and his strategists popping the champagne and wondering how many more times Labour can shoot itself in the foot. Definitely ‘pass the popcorn’ time!

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  13. KiwiGreg (3,129 comments) says:

    “If Key leaves”

    WHEN Key leaves.

    2014 be my guess. Be his choice too.

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  14. backster (2,000 comments) says:

    Stick to your guns Clare you are the one who is right here. Get in behind Phil and go places. They are picking on you because you are a woman and a southern girl at that.

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  15. Griff (6,263 comments) says:

    The man has proven to be one of our greatest statesmen yet.

    I am Surprised the left don’t call out that is unfair as well.

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  16. Inventory2 (9,791 comments) says:

    @ backster – like Australia? Or the UK?

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  17. Pete George (21,830 comments) says:

    Notice how the follow up to the Red Alert blurt had a decidely green tinge. Spontaneous?

    Labour have heaped political disdain on the Green Party in the past, maybe a few free range chickens are coming home to roost.

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  18. dime (8,789 comments) says:

    this chick is just odd.

    i think shes trying to come across as passionate. but its just epic fail.

    go back to defending that traditional highlanders jersey.. the one that can trace its heritage all the way back to 1996.

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  19. Nigel (503 comments) says:

    It’s been coming, she’s on my twitter feed & leaving aside the humour/stupidity in some of her posts, it’s kind of serious that she is an MP ranting off like some druggie communist student from Kaitaia.
    Maybe she just needs a holiday, maybe she’s showing the pressure Labour caucus is under, but there’s something not right here.

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  20. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    And she boasts of her PR skilz.

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  21. Pete George (21,830 comments) says:

    Surprising who has posted Pull your head in, Curran – is that a semi official public rap over the knuckles?

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  22. Doug (405 comments) says:

    Labour = A train wreck waiting to happen.

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  23. kowtow (6,733 comments) says:

    She can say what she likes.
    She in a very safe Labour seat, south Dunedin.
    I think she was “parachuted “in over local objections,could be wrong. But as such she comes from Labour HQ so has a HQ mentality. Lefty,feminist,bossy,doctrinaire but most importantly, safe.
    The ill discipline on display is all part of the melt down and a sure sign of Goffs inability at the helm.Many of the rats unfortunately have seats on the lifeboat in safe welfare dependant constituencies.

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  24. tom hunter (4,012 comments) says:

    However many in Labour believe that those on the right are evil people motivated purely by self interest.

    Why pick on Labour? That’s the attitude of the Left across the board and around the Western world, no more so than in the comments section of places like The Dim Post.

    And for self-interest substitute the word “greed”: it’s constant in the threads and completely misses the point that was made as long ago as Adam Smith:

    By pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes that of the society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it.

    Moreover, the Left especially don’t agree with the next sentence:

    I have never known much good done by those who affected to trade for the public good.

    Nowadays it’s almost ingrained in ordinary citizens, especially in NZ, that the opposite is true – that our society is better off as a result of those who trade for the public good.

    And if you don’t – well then you’re an evil bastard.

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  25. jcuk (512 comments) says:

    Her comments are typical of the sort of thing which has caused me to stop visiting The Standard, and as I consider the Greens akin to terrorists, and ACT has lost its way, I will probably vote National for the first time in many elections. The only shadow on that is what they plan to do, very much a curates egg, since they are doing well at the moment. Better the devil you know etc ….

    Dunedin needs more National MPs because with Labour in office it is ignored and with National in office it is dismissed. But I guess Stn DN will continue to be either labour or green, though with a big enough split National might slip past them.

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  26. adze (1,695 comments) says:

    Lol I see there’s only 11 comments on her blog post now… Everything in moderation Curran, including moderation.

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  27. Elaycee (4,089 comments) says:

    People under pressure respond in a variety of ways… Curran is just another example of how it can go wrong.

    People used to making decisions on a daily basis, will usually respond in a reasoned / ‘matter of fact’ manner and take responsibility if things turn to custard.

    People not used to making decisions will quickly become irrational / angry / claim the moral high ground as part of their ‘argument’ and invariably blame everyone else when things turn pear shaped.

    It is a major difference between people who have been successful (at any level) in the commercial world and those who are state servants / career unionists / teachers / career politicians.

    Curran needs to be taken to one side by a strong party leader and told how to behave. Oh oh… but that would require a ‘strong leader’ in the red corner rather than a ‘Phil-in’ for the next 3 months…

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  28. tvb (3,947 comments) says:

    If curren thinks people on the centre right are evil and deserve to be hated well we hate her. She will not recruit votes with this attitude. She is just great for the centre right. I well remember that death stare she gave in parliament over a speech by Jerry browless. I can imagine her [deleted by DPF]

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  29. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    Her arrogance is seriously scary.

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  30. realize (21 comments) says:

    I’ve always voted Labour, not because I’ve always agreed with their policies, although I am left leaning, but because I haven’t wanted National to get too large a mandate and move further right.

    But “dysfunctional” is exactly the word to describe Labour at the moment. I’m voting National for the first time because they seem to be reasonable adults. And the greens have too many weird ideologies that don’t make sense.

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  31. Inventory2 (9,791 comments) says:

    @ adze; that’s the first, slightly less-provocative post. There are still 70 comments on the money thread, overwhelmingly critical of Labour, its arrogance, and its apparent born-to-rule ethos.

    The real irony is this though; in the first post, Curran blogs (my emphasis added):

    White-anting is an Australian expression. It means undermining. I lived there for 14 years, worked for the trade union movement and as a public relations professional. Proud of my time there, the work I did and the people I worked with.

    Perhaps Clare needs to do a public relations refresher course; this was a PR apocalypse!

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  32. Pete George (21,830 comments) says:

    Dunedin needs more National MPs because with Labour in office it is ignored and with National in office it is dismissed. But I guess Stn DN will continue to be either labour or green, though with a big enough split National might slip past them.

    I don’t think there’s much chance of change in Dunedin South, National seem to be doing no more than giving someone electorate experience.

    Look North.

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  33. Rich Prick (1,324 comments) says:

    Vote Labour or else Clare will get very angry. Yes, that should work.

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  34. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    You wouldn’t like Clare when shes angry!

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  35. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Hell we don’t like her now.

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  36. SHG (321 comments) says:

    I know Curran is supposed to be a communications expert, but has anyone ever seen any evidence of it?

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  37. scrubone (2,971 comments) says:

    I feel like being a bit contrary on this one :)

    She’s right in a way – it’s hardly fair for Labour to build up the left only to have another party take all those voters they’ve worked so hard over the years to brainwash.

    I have never for one second had any time for Clair Curren. She’s a head office appointee, granted her seat by the head of the Labour party. Of course she’s entitled to those supporters, Helen deeded them to her.

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  38. peterwn (2,940 comments) says:

    Claire can take her seat for granted. Her overarching responsibility as a Labour MP is to get the party vote up especially in her patch. To ‘borrow’ the Pak’n’Save slogan – Everything she does, she does to get the party vote high – so it should be, but Labour is probably panicking so much that she is missing the point.

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  39. Angus (536 comments) says:

    What is it about those Morlocks who inhabit Dunedin South and their insistence on sending utter fruitcakes to Parliament? First was that sadistic BDSM pervert Benson-Pope, and now Curran – who ‘s as flaky as freshly fallen snow. Who’s next? That Ronald McDonald nutjob from the Greens?

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  40. Pete George (21,830 comments) says:

    Claire can take her seat for granted. Her overarching responsibility as a Labour MP is to get the party vote up especially in her patch. To ‘borrow’ the Pak’n’Save slogan – Everything she does, she does to get the party vote high – so it should be, but Labour is probably panicking so much that she is missing the point.

    All parties are now far more openly concentrating on party vote for obvious reasons, but I think if they forget and ignore electorates too much it could detract from their party vote.

    We have a growing disparity between voters and votees – voters generally want better representation and despise the list, while votees are becoming list obsessed.

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  41. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    And here was I deep in my belief the left were tolerant, respectful and always stood on the high moral ground. Yes of course I jest. I’m no fan of the commie Melons but at least they are still free of the born to be an arrogant arsehole ruler attitude. I wonder when it will dawn on these Liarbore twits that they are in serious danger of dying a death of a thousand cuts. Do the country a favour lefties, devour each other.

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  42. lastmanstanding (1,154 comments) says:

    I suspect Curran is saying what most Socialist MPs think. They are facing defeat on a grand scale. Nothing they do is getting any traction. Their door knocking and polling will be telling them even their staunchest supporters are turning away from them.

    But Curran also reflects the mentality of the Socialist MP. Born to rule. Born to control. Born to tell the little people how they will live their lives. Just look at the Socialist MPs. Arrogant to a T. Superior beings in their own lunch time.

    And now facing the reality that Clark/Cullen bought upon them after a decade of lording it over the citizens those citizens are giving them the one fingered salute.

    Yes as other have said break out the popcorn. For those of us on the RIGHT this is payback for the horrors of 1999/2008

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  43. beautox (408 comments) says:

    Curran claims “White-anting is an Australian expression. It means undermining.”

    Actually it means “Undermining from within”…now guess who is doing that. Step forward Ms White Ant Curran.

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  44. kiwi in america (2,336 comments) says:

    Curran has highlighted a problem for the 2 big parties – that of vote cannabalisation by your more extreme ideological partner party. ACT ate into National’s vote in 2002 and the Greens are doing it to Labour now. This happens when the mainstream party moves a little too far from its ideological moorings or the party and its leader are faltering. Given that Labour has moved somewhat to the left of late this latest incursion by the Greens is almost entirely due to Goff’s poor showing.

    Labour and National are still broad church parties although MMP has increased voter options to allow the more pure left wing to find a home with the Greens (or Mana now) and Progressives and previously the Alliance. Pure right wingers have really only ACT to go to although the Christian Heritage/Coalition did siphon off the evangelical Christian/super social conservative vote in the late 90′s. That said there are many centre left people for whom Labour has always been there home and ditto National for the centre right.

    Under MMP if your preferred party looks unlikely to be the next government (National 2002 and Labour 2011) then those who traditionally voted Labour but were part of the left flank of the party will find it much easier to break ranks and be more ideologically pure with their vote and switch to the Greens and not upset the left/right balance. They do so knowing that Labour stands little chance of forming a government whereas were the left/right only divided by 5% or less they’d probably prefer to bolster Labour’s negotiating position in a new coalition by reducing the Green vote thus ensuring the Cabinet is more dominated by Labour ministers.

    This sort of tactical voting absolutely happened on the right in 2002 when it became clear English was a loser. There some right leaning Nats I know who are philosophically more ACT people but who intend to vote National to bolster Key’s chances of governing alone.

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  45. Grant Michael McKenna (1,152 comments) says:

    Two points:
    [1] White ants prefer rotten wood.
    [2] Why did Ms Curran use a racially loaded term to refer to a negative? Why didn’t she say ‘termite’? Is this some kind of ‘dog whistle’?

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  46. lastmanstanding (1,154 comments) says:

    KIA Well put and in my case you are right. Having been an ACT party voter from the start I will be giving 2 ticks to the Nats for the very reason you put. And I suspect many other former Act party vote only voters will do so to ensure we have a Nat majority.

    For me the tail wagging the dog has always been the downfall with MMP. You only get decisive government with a single majority lead government.

    IMHO the 1980 reforms wouldnt have happened under MMP. WE would now be a true banana republic if we had had MMP at that time.

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  47. davidp (3,329 comments) says:

    While it’d be fun to gloat about Curran’s mastery of social media and to wonder how she ever worked in PR…

    …I think Labour are shitting themselves about the Greens taking traditional Labour voters. They’ve seen this happening in Australia and they’ve also seen a Labour-Green coalition make the Labour brand toxic as Gillard is held responsible for the carbon dioxide tax that the Greens forced on her.

    I’ve heard several times over the last few months that the NZ polls will get closer as we approach the election. I think the opposite will be true. Voters will look at the possibility of a Labour-Green-Mana-NZ First coalition and run screaming to National. Inevitably we will eventually end up with a Labour-Green coalition. I predict it will last one term as voters wake up to what a coalition based on a weird religious philosophy and featuring some of the strangest people in NZ politics actually means.

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  48. Viking2 (10,744 comments) says:

    Labour, as I have predicted will self destruct and the only question that reamins is who is going to get the money that remains in their assets?
    They simply have no reason to exist anylonger.
    The Nats. will take their place and we will need a right wing to keep the nats. honest.

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  49. Courage Wolf (559 comments) says:

    tom hunter (2,199) Says:
    August 23rd, 2011 at 10:13 am

    “However many in Labour believe that those on the right are evil people motivated purely by self interest.”

    Why pick on Labour? That’s the attitude of the Left across the board and around the Western world, no more so than in the comments section of places like The Dim Post.

    Why pick on the Left in the West? You should check out the fundamentalist Republican Christians in America – some of the most hateful people in the world.

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  50. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Yes CW all members of the Republican party and their supporters a members of westboro church.

    Dickwad.

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  51. RRM (8,997 comments) says:

    While DPF’s summary here does cherry-pick the threads for maximum anti-labour effect, the general overview is correct.

    Labour party is just a basket case now. Why wouldn’t most of their voters turn to National or the Greens?

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  52. Courage Wolf (559 comments) says:

    Murray (8,103) Says:
    August 23rd, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Yes CW all members of the Republican party and their supporters a members of westboro church.

    Dickwad.

    Yes Murray, all members of the Left across the world and their supporters (the comment I was responding to) are evil. Fuckface.

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  53. scrubone (2,971 comments) says:

    Yes Murray, all members of the Labour party and their supporters are evil. Fuckface.

    The irony is strong in this one.

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  54. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “You should check out the fundamentalist Republican Christians in America – some of the most hateful people in the world.”

    In fact they are some of the most generous, loving and decent people I have ever met.

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  55. UpandComer (496 comments) says:

    Labour will come back.

    All of the same stuff was being said about the Nats in 2002 – that they no longer had any place in politics, the party and constituency was going to disappear, they had no money, no party organisation, were riven by in-fighting, personnell were hopeless, Helen Clark was omnipotent. The mythologising was in full swing and the narrative was fundamentally bad news for National despite the realities etc. I hope that Labour is a non-entity for a decade at least, but unfortunately they will come back. Haha and my prediction is David Cunliffe will be Prime Minister. That pompous man is an ambitious brada and does have some brains even if he is a total dork; the arch deacon of nearly-Harvard with a turgid poem in praise of himself!

    Really keen to see if the Greens actually get to twelve percent this year. Every year it’s looking great for them but they always end up on five or six percent.

    I hope the Greens pacman the Labour vote and get to fifteen percent, just so I can see some of the wizened fruity forest elves and dewy eyed young hipsters on their list coming in. I predict a number of white personnel who will deliver a large proportion of their maiden speeches in either badly or over enthusiastically pronounced Maori.

    The Greens have been treated like Clare Curran’s template voter by Labour, it’s good they’re giving Labour the same treatment. They don’t owe Clare Curran anything either.

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  56. Pete George (21,830 comments) says:

    A point someone made on the Standard:

    Would people rather ‘gagging orders’ applied to every M.P. and that they could only utter an opinion after clearance from central office/committee?

    She ‘confessed’ to being angry and reckoning she should ‘probably be more measured’.

    And she wasn’t (measured).Yeah, well. So what?

    I’d far rather M.P.s were people with all the jagged edges and fuck-ups than polished insincere spin doctors.

    Free speech and free expression are important, aren’t they? Shouldn’t we be able to see what politicians are really like? It seems to be a novelty when one actually get’s revealingly open and emotional.

    Irony – we want politicians to be more like real life people, except when they aren’t?

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  57. scrubone (2,971 comments) says:

    In fact they are some of the most generous, loving and decent people I have ever met.

    Quite, many people say much the same. Check out this book (the link is a pretty average summary)
    http://www.tburg.k12.ny.us/hsking/Apgov/In%20Defense%20of%20the%20Religious%20Right.pdf

    One would point out that their “evil” image is fostered by the American left. Oh wait, isn’t that even more proof that the left are evil?

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  58. kowtow (6,733 comments) says:

    This thread was going very nicely until coward wolf brought religion up.
    Can’t he keep his religion out of my politics?

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  59. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “This thread was going very nicely until coward wolf brought religion up.”

    He does seem a little obsessed, and with a subject he clearly knows very little about.

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  60. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “One would point out that their “evil” image is fostered by the American left.”

    And the left in general, as well as the MSM. Coward wolf uses the tired and intellectually bankrupt strategy of cherry picking internet stories and going “Aha! look, Christians!”

    If he ever puts together a coherent and credible argument I will be checking to see if any pigs are flying past my window.

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  61. tas (530 comments) says:

    “I’ve often observed that most in National think Labour are wrong, but do not think those on the left are evil. However many in Labour believe that those on the right are evil people motivated purely by self interest.”

    I completely agree. That’s why I left the left—their understanding of politics is based on a giant conspiracy theory.

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  62. Pauleastbay (5,030 comments) says:

    There I was going to vote labour in 2043 on the occassion of my 103rd birthday, well Clare you’ve fucked that up.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  63. Viking2 (10,744 comments) says:

    Will that be an absentee vote Paul??

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  64. Pauleastbay (5,030 comments) says:

    Na, V2 I have a plan

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  65. Johnboy (13,439 comments) says:

    Are you only 71 PaulEB?

    Well I never. How many Avigra’s do you take when you get the urge? :)

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