McCarten’s influence swings Labour Left

February 26th, 2014 at 4:27 pm by Jadis

*don’t freak out that this is a tad edgier than DPF – yes, it is Jadis!

So, we are months out from an election.  Labour are doing ok but need to lift their game a bit in the polls.  They’ve released a couple of policies that they thought were great only to find the support for them isn’t as strong as expected (partly due to poor rollout).  Labour have a couple of strategic decisions to make.  They can create a ‘new’ Labour with a ‘new’ direction and ‘new policy – albeit more to the Left.  Or they can get a bit pragmatic in some policy areas and work the middle ground.  Bizarrely, with just months to the election Labour have firmly decided to go Left, very Left.  So Left that the last Colmar Brunton poll shows Labour losing ‘middle’ vote to National and gaining ‘very Left’ vote from  the Greens.  Today’s appointment of confirms just how Left they will go.

I think we need to get one thing out of the way… could someone please put to bed the  rumours that the UNITE union donated heavily to Cunliffe’s leadership campaign?  I’m just thinking of caucus unity here.  Imagine how Robertson and Jones might feel about the idea that the head of UNITE is now Chief of Staff.

Matt is as Left as they come.  Let’s not kid ourselves that Matt has some special ability to be pragmatic or go after the middle ground.  He wants to tax as hard as he can and he’s said many a time that while he thinks Key is clever he’s also said that Key is too pragmatic and has no ‘big ideas.

So, Matt is there to do ‘big ideas’ just like Cunliffe – big ideas mean big tax and big government.

Matt doesn’t play nicely with others.  McCarten will not be some wonderful uniting influence within Labour.  We’re all aware of the history between McCarten and Jim Anderton.  Some might think “What’s the big deal?  Anderton is a retired MP and not in Wellington any more.”  Here’s the wee problem.  Anderton, along with Ruth Dyson’s lovely husband run Christchurch (and the wider Canterbury area).  Some reports say that Anderton has give Cunliffe his blessing for McCarten to be employed while Duncan Garner’s sources suggest that Anderton is pretty wild about McCarten being in the mix.  The only way I can see Anderton giving his blessing would be with the proviso “as long as that prick doesn’t step foot in Canterbury.”  Well then, that’s a lovely start to that relationship.

Matt is talented at divide and rule.  The last thing Labour needs is another ‘divide and rule’ player.  Labour should be looking at a Heather Simpson or Wayne Eagleson type.  Both stayed in the background, worked with everyone, had great political instincts and insights, knew when to tell some to pull their head in and knew when to make deals within the caucus.  They also always had their Leader’s back.  Always.  The whole idea of McCarten in a room with Tim Barnett, Moira Coatsworth, Cunliffe, Talbot and ‘senior MPs’ fills every right winger with delight.   Matt won’t be a team player.  He’ll want it his way and he’ll get very upset if someone wants to take the pragmatic path.    I predict now that he may well walk out of a meeting before the election and never return.

Why should it matter though? Matt is Chief of Staff.  With clearly defined boundaries he won’t be involved in Party business.  Except that we know this isn’t the case when Cunliffe himself extols the virtues of McCarten’s organisation skills at the grassroots level.  The mainstream unions have been in a fight with UNITE over members for years so don’t go thinking that the union angle is going to be all lovely.  We know now that the CTU’s Helen Kelly had no idea of Matt McCarten’s appointment.  Oh dear, so she isn’t in Matt’s circle is she?

The Greens should also be worried about this.  Going this far Left means their ground is very unstable.  What will they do to compensate?  The Greens know McCarten well so they know what a threat he is to them.

 

 

 

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82 Responses to “McCarten’s influence swings Labour Left”

  1. thor42 (971 comments) says:

    Ahhhhhh…. I **love** the smell of internecine warfare in the morning…….. :)

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  2. Roflcopter (450 comments) says:

    Look around all the lefty blogs… they’re all giving the big “Hallelujah Matt!!” in exactly the same way as when Cunliffe got the leader’s position…. look how that turned out.

    Train wrecks aren’t pretty when it’s just the engine, it gets worse when there’s lots of old rusty carriages shackled to the back of it.

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  3. Keeping Stock (10,267 comments) says:

    Excellent summary Jadis. I would urge iPredict to open a stock based on the probability of McCarten still being around by Election Day. Personally, I think your “walk out of a meeting and never return” scenario is highly bloody likely!

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  4. Manolo (13,518 comments) says:

    Go ahead McCarten: sow discontent and wreak havoc among the moderate sectors of the Labour Party. Alienate as many socialists as you wish with your extreme left-wing rhetoric.

    In a nutshell: fuck-up Silent T’s campaign…and make a big mess of it.

    But pay your and UNITE’s taxes first!

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  5. iMP (2,354 comments) says:

    Well, I guess all that is left in the Green corner is for Russell to go for the kitchen and closet vote.

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  6. Peter (1,687 comments) says:

    The left blogs will cheer any change because any change has to be better than their status quo. It must be. It must.

    Wishful thinking, of course. They’re putting out the fire with gasoline.

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  7. Manolo (13,518 comments) says:

    The deranged Annette Sykes writes:
    “On behalf of the MANA Movement, I’d like to congratulate Matt McCarten on his appointment as David Cunliffe’s Chief of Staff”. It’s great having someone we know is committed to the same broad goals as us leading Labour’s election strategy.”

    Enough said. With friends like her who needs enemies.

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  8. Pete George (23,434 comments) says:

    Jadis – is there a job specification? What are the “clearly defined boundaries”?

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  9. Pete George (23,434 comments) says:

    Manolo – it almost looks like Labour have done a deal with Mana for Harawira/Mana to be a token party with perhaps another electorate jacked up for them with the bargain being to move Labour closer to Mana socialism which is dominated by unions.

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  10. Sir Cullen's Sidekick (872 comments) says:

    This is the day Labour as a party in NZ starts to disintegrate. Nice move Cunliffe.

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  11. James Stephenson (2,145 comments) says:

    It’s a simple ruse to prevent the media writing headlines about Labour’s stuttering election campaign.

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  12. SPC (5,563 comments) says:

    This is simply the offload play, if it all goes wrong blame Matt. Jim the old in the old guard and Helen/CTU won’t mind. Keep me for 2017 and blame my former Chief of Staff. It won’t be a hard sell.

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  13. tas (611 comments) says:

    Maybe Labour have given up on winning so they are going after the Greens’ support instead. It’s easier to win votes off the Greens than off National and hopefully it means the Greens aren’t such a big force in 2017, which means Cunliffe can go after National without worrying about them then.

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  14. Yogibear (361 comments) says:

    It seems’ Stephen Joyce’s quip about JK debating the leader of the main opposition party, but not being sure who that was at the moment, really hurt Labour sensibilities

    Cunliffe’s 3 (not two) election strategy becomes clearer by the day.

    2014 – put the Greens firmly in their place by recapturing the leftards -significantly increasing Labour’s poll result even though there may be a net loss to the left.

    2014- 2017 – Empowered by a spectacular recapturing of the left vote – lead a series of purges of the ABCs (which by this stage under McCarten will be close to 80% of the Labour Caucus) so that the electorate will see the left as NBC (No-one But Cunliffe), and even though that may result in another drubbing, no one will be in any shape to roll him.

    Win the 2020 election, because 5 terms is virtually impossible

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  15. bringbackdemocracy (423 comments) says:

    Has Matt paid his tax bill yet?

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  16. duggledog (1,505 comments) says:

    God it just disappoints me so much to see the once mighty Labour reduced to this…

    I got to thinking about the old saying – if you’re not a socialist when you’re young you have no heart but if you’re not a conservative when you are middle aged then you have no head –

    There was crazy old ‘old money’ Laila Harre banging on about Matt McCarten on National Radio on the way home, saying how the Nats will be worried, Willy Jackson fawning all over him today on radio Live, mentioning Jim Anderton – with the exception of Marten Bradbury these are all old relics trying to relive the glory days of the seventies and eighties and their Student Union and Union antics when clearly the country isn’t interested any more. We’re not going back! The only room is to the RIGHT of National or straight up the guts – not to the left you fools! The vast interior vote knows they are being squeezed by the reckless povs at the bottom Labour and the Greens now solely represent AND the very top shelf… who are being dealt with finally (Clark did nothing)

    McCarten is NOT going to be a circuit breaker Laila! You may think he is a ‘sharp operator’ but his attempts thus far have been abysmal.

    God it’s embarrassing. They’re like children

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  17. Auberon (873 comments) says:

    After years of reading this blog I think I know DPF pretty well, and I think he would have said pretty much the same thing Jadis.

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  18. corrigenda (142 comments) says:

    Quote: Matt is as Left as they come. ….. He wants to tax as hard as he can

    Ok then, let him tax as hard as he likes and we will just follow his previous example and not bother to pay tax at all !!!

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  19. wally (64 comments) says:

    Dyson has a husband?

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  20. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    I think this business of Matt using PAYE (Yes PAYE … It’s trust money right ? – It was never his to ‘legally’ spend) for his own best interests should ban him from participating in politics. Seriously … I’m not just picking on Matt, I don’t like his politics but he is true to his core values (if we exclude not paying his PAYE bill because lefties generally insists tax is good and necessary and go after people who avoid paying it) and that needs to be respected.

    But this PAYE business is very serious – If I operated a company and did that then popped my head above the political trench the left would be all over me – like always, they don’t hold their own team to the same standards they expect other teams to play by – there is a name for this – corrupt and self serving !

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  21. srylands (404 comments) says:

    “Win the 2020 election, because 5 terms is virtually impossible”

    It depends what is on offer as an alternative. I agree it is unlikely. But the Hawke-Keating government in Australia won 5 terms from 1983 to 1996. Apart from the first, all of those elections were hard fought.

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  22. RRM (9,784 comments) says:

    If at first you don’t succeed.. go even further left. Yeah that might do it. :neutral:

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  23. markm (112 comments) says:

    Over at the Standard they are excusing McCartens theft of employees PAYE as understandable because he was sick.
    He wasnt sick enough from 2009 to stop work , to stop protesting , to stop wrecking peoples business , to stop taking his salary and writing newspaper colums , but he was to sick to either do the minimal paperwork involved in paying the PAYE or getting someone else to do it.

    PAYE isnt the employers money , it is the employees (in McCartens world , the hard done by worker) money held by their employer , in trust , to pay to IRD .

    It is theft , not to do so , and creates a liabilty with IRD if not paid.

    Mc Carten must have spent it on something else.
    Thats theft.

    The Standardistas cant use one of their lines , that it was an offshoot of Unite , therefore not directly involving McCarten and also use the line that he was involved, but just to sick to do a few key strokes on his online banking.

    Labour deserve this highly capable campaigner and Im sure theyll match the level of vote achieved by the Mana party campaign that McCarten masterminded

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  24. Akaroa (552 comments) says:

    Hey Wally at 5.27! (Dyson has a husband?)

    The same thought occurred to me when I spotted that earlier reference to same.

    The only addition to your comment I would make is: ‘This I gotta see!!”

    (Apologies for descending into levity on this otherwise serious subject!!)

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  25. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    srylands

    The Hawke-Keating situation is probably quite comparable – I was living in Aussie for part of that period and the opposition was disorganised in much the same way Labour are here today.

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  26. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    markm

    PAYE isnt the employers money , it is the employees (in McCartens world , the hard done by worker) money held by their employer , in trust , to pay to IRD .

    It is theft , not to do so , and creates a liabilty with IRD if not paid.

    Mc Carten must have spent it on something else.
    Thats theft.

    This is exactly right – not paying PROV is pretty serious – not paying PAYE is right up there with not paying GST.

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  27. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    Breaking news: Left leaning political parties excuse business not paying PAYE if the owners are unwell or the money is spent advancing the cause of the left !

    Who’d have guessed it’s different when the left do it !

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  28. PaulL (5,947 comments) says:

    It’s still going to be a hard election for National, the only thing that will change that is if ACT make some inroads into the vote and free National up to go more to the centre. Which I am still 50/50 on, I think ACT’ll get two MPs, not sure if more this time around.

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  29. RRM (9,784 comments) says:

    The scary thing is when you step away from political forums, and observe the general unwashed on facebook…

    “Yeah boi it’s about time the government gave more money to people who are struggling instead of keeping it for themselves…”

    It concerns me that there might actually be enough semi-literate orcs in this country to vote Labour in, if they make enough spending promises. :-(

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  30. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    RRM

    That is actually a real concern. A hard core lefty once told me she thought the area she lived in should be declared independent and that it could then increase the benefits paid to unemployed people above the national level such that they didn’t need to struggle so much.

    I pointed out to her that she lived in an area with relatively high unemployment and that being declared independent would by it’s very nature exclude the area from access to the general tax revenue of the country and therefore the area would need to be self funding for welfare …. She sat a while and contemplated that – then declared that everyone should have more welfare ….

    As a tax payer – I contemplated that I now understood why I was employed and she wasn’t !

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  31. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    I posted this in the earlier McCarten appointment thread by David

    Trotter and the lefties on the Daily Blog and The Stranded have been goading Cunliffe to make some grand statement to excite the left and they got their way. McCarten is as hard core a lefty as Cunliffe could respectably appoint. Having had brief dealings with McCarten I can assure readers that he is every bit as ruthless, egotistical, divisive and disdainful of centrist Labour members as he has been described by others. This move will hasten the inroads Labour has already made into the Greens and ensures the participation of Labour’s activist base so in that regard, the appointment will achieve a narrow modicum of success.

    BUT – the hard left are clueless as to how middle NZ perceive them and their policies. Did Cunliffe think that a left leaning media would just forget that McCarten’s union blew off $100k of PAYE? It is important to understand the gravity of this non payment. Not paying your income tax is naughty but something the IRD will allow some leeway and come an agreeable scheme of arrangement. PAYE and GST are considered trust funds – in other words the employer holds those funds temporarily on behalf of the Crown until the next month’s return (in the case of PAYE) or the next GST return filing period (varies depending on turnover and type of business). Not paying the government’s funds you have temporarily held in trust for it is a much more serious offence and the more egregious cases end up with custodial sentences being dished out. It’s surprising McCarten has not faced more serious censure.

    The unpaid tax will be an easy hit for government ministers to make on Cunners. But from an electoral standpoint, McCarten’s lengthy and aggressive union background will make it so very much easier to paint Labour as in the lap of the unions undoing any of Cunliffe’s centrist overtures. McCarten does not do centrist diplomacy. He takes no prisoners. He will declare war on the ABCs and try to drive them out of the party. Cunliffe thought he was unpopular in caucus before – wait until McCarten starts to throw his weight around. The internecine warfare will be another delicious sight for the right to enjoy over a slab of Speights and plenty of popcorn!

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  32. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    I think it’s a marriage made in socialist heaven.

    Ma..Ma…Ma…Matt almost has twice as many silent “t’s” as Cunner’s! :)

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  33. SPC (5,563 comments) says:

    How is that she she she sheep dating thing going johnboy.

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  34. SPC (5,563 comments) says:

    kiwi in america, it’s against all best practice to have a public figure as chief of staff – but there is a reason for it here. To say to caucus that he can rely on McCarten and the party activist for full backing during the campaign. The disunity already exists and so this is one way to work around it. And maximising the left wing vote for Labour achieves some of what Brash did in 2005 (albeit the Greens will still return with c10% of the vote).

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  35. Barnsley Bill (983 comments) says:

    Stop calling him chief of staff. That is just the bullshit job title they have given their election campaign manager to avoid having to pay him from their empty pot. Chief of staff is publically funded. Campaign manager is not. Wake up, labour are using a tax cheat to cheat the taxpayers.

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  36. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    Barnsley Bill

    I think you have hit the nail on the head – I can hardly wait for Winston to get back from China looking for evidence that Huka Lodge has been sold to the Chinese because he’s always rowdy and reliable about exposing these types of things … Oh hang on – It’s Labour doing it – Winston will be silent on this matter !

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  37. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    JohnBoy

    Seriously, make fun of Matt’s politics – make fun of him spending PAYE money on his own best interests – but leave his stutter alone eh !

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  38. duggledog (1,505 comments) says:

    Sadly for the left, McCarten’s appointment didn’t even make the TV One News bulletin. Desperately trying to regain non-partisan credibility probably.

    MarkM @ 5.35: Regarding Matt’s horrendous illness – was it liver cancer? The guy has clearly made a remarkable recovery. From memory it sounded at the time like it was pretty much terminal. That he has the strength in him to do what he’s about to do is remarkable!

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  39. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    SPC
    It’s a play to consolidate Labour’s vote on the left for sure – it won’t win them the election. Did Clark win in 1999 by taking Labour to the left? This is more about Cunliffe’s survival post election if indeed he faces a go slow from his non co-operative caucus. It’s an end run around their lack of co-operation. But churning votes with the Greens does nothing more than prevent a Bill English style collapse of Labour’s vote into the sub 25% territory. A union driven spend up fuelled by envy taxes against the backdrop of a increasingly buoyant economy? Yep that’s the ticket.

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  40. UrbanNeocolonialist (276 comments) says:

    Perhaps Labour are effectively conceding the election and this swing to the left is an attempt to rout the Greens. Lefties hate to share power.

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  41. duggledog (1,505 comments) says:

    I take it back. McCarten story buried in the third part of the bulletin with the other cute bits – however would you know it? In a piece put together by Katie Bradford.

    Perhaps TVNZ news have accurately figured McCarten’s appointment means that much to the average NZer.

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  42. Duxton (633 comments) says:

    Piss off burt! The left are quick to poke the borax at John Key and his ‘lazy diction’.

    As far as I’m concerned, it’s perfectly reasonable to give him a nudge about his stutter :-)

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  43. Pete George (23,434 comments) says:

    KIA – how realistic are they in awakening and mobilising the non-voters? First they have to convince then to vote. And they also have to convince them to vote Labour.

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  44. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    Duxton

    You know when you stoop to the level of the people you think are gutter that you too are gutter ? You get that right ? You understand that “they did it first” and “they do it too” are childish responses that don’t really cut it with adults?

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  45. mara (763 comments) says:

    JB and SPC. You and I may think that Mat is a political dick but am I unreasonable in suggesting that mentioning his physical handicap of stuttering is out of bounds? Much as I detest his politics, I admire the obvious effort he underwent to overcome this problem to a huge extent. I extend the same courtesy to that deaf Green lady despite my thinking that Greens are quite mad.

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  46. Psycho Milt (2,405 comments) says:

    McCarten’s influence swings Labour left

    Sigh – if only this was even slightly true…

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  47. duggledog (1,505 comments) says:

    Pete George –

    I give you three letters

    K… F… C…

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  48. Bingo99 (87 comments) says:

    What’s even more entertaining than this cluster#@%§ of an appointment (that there was even a need for an appointment at this point in time has been summarily dismissed it seems) is the left-commentariats’ complete disconnect from reality. None moreso than that of Martyn Bradbury.

    The venerable “Bomber” thinks a very public shift to the left is going to somehow increase the chance of a Labour government, all the while inflaming a civil war within Labour. This from the same political mastermind that calculated, for a fee, that the Dotcom Party was going to pinch votes from National… moments before the Greens are scrambling to beg Dotcom to reconsider.

    If there’s anything voters loathe more than internal party strife and more extreme ideological policies it’s hypocrisy, which McCarten brings in spades. Hard to think of a worse pick on Cunliffe’s part, unless the theory that they’re farming out financing their campaign to Dotcom and the public (nee McCarten) holds.

    In any case, and at the very least, this must surely disqualify Bradbury from any serious political discourse in future, if he isn’t completely ignored already.

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  49. Keeping Stock (10,267 comments) says:

    @ burt (5.32pm) – right on the money. If an employer with staff who are members of the Unite union deducted their PAYE, Student Loan, Child Support and Kiwisaver deductions but then didn’t pass them on to IRD, McCarten would rightly jump up and down; fair enough too.

    The timing of his offending was dodgy too; nine months either side of the 2008 General Election. It’s hard to come to any other conclusion that McCarten was more concerned with bankrolling a pro-Left campaign than meeting his obligations as a good employer. This must not be allowed to be just explained away as an oversight; it was an outright rort, plain and simple.

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  50. Nostalgia-NZ (5,097 comments) says:

    Sounds too silly to be true but maybe it is, taking votes from the Greens while at the same time losing the middle ground is likely to be an election disaster. Taking votes from the Greens or a distancing from them while beefing up the centre catchment would be a better chance. Interesting to see which way it goes, just sounds too stupid to believe. Adding on a few percent from the Greens won’t help Labour, particularly when a big ‘did not vote’ rests idly in the centre.

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  51. Sofia (852 comments) says:

    Yesterday Cunliffe was determined he’d win the 2017 Election.
    So McCarten will become the fall-guy for loosing this 2014 Election – whether he is still around at the time, or not.
    Go Labour :-) really … go!

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  52. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Burt and mara. I don’t give a shit what polite sensitivities you two suffer from. McCarten is a typical example of a fucking socialist trougher that has made a good living sponging off the taxpayers. Just like the unelected Green mob that you mention. I’m happy to abuse him anyway I feel like and if you don’t like it …..tough! :)

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  53. wat dabney (3,709 comments) says:

    The headlines really should read “Labour Party scrapes the underside of the barrel as its war against the workers continues.”

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  54. dishy (241 comments) says:

    I just heard Michelle Boag on the wireless. She’s persuaded the IRD that McCarten’s PAYE matter was just a typo. The payments were made; they were just ‘incomplete’. Nothing to see here etc.

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  55. nickb (3,686 comments) says:

    Read s143A of the Tax Administration Act 1994. Specifically, a person commits an offence under that section if they:

    knowingly applies or permits the application of the amount of a deduction or withholding of tax made or deemed made under a tax law for any purpose other than in payment to the Commissioner;

    Matt McCarten has prima facie breached this section vis a vis Unite. Maximum penalty 5 years’ imprisonment.

    How on earth can Labour be taken seriously on one of their core policies – reducing tax avoidance – when their leader’s chief of staff has arguably gone one better (worse?) and committed tax evasion?

    Michelle Boag is full of shit. PAYE is money held in trust for the Crown. Every employer knows this on a rudimentary basis. It’s a criminal offence to use it for something else. Yet Unite didn’t pay it. Why?

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  56. srylands (404 comments) says:

    “This is great news for the working class poor! Matts a great motivator and has more talent in one of his little pinkies than the entire National cabinet! They’ll be shitting it for sure!” – THE STANDARD

    ….. Yeah Right!

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  57. Francis_X (147 comments) says:

    If some of you want to sledge McCarten’s politics – go for your lives.

    But making fun of a stutter? Fuck that. That’s school yard shit. Only tossers who have nothing else to say descend into that kind of moronic childishness. (And I made the same comment on a couple of left wing blogs as well. That showed up a few tosspots as well.)

    Ok, carry on.

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  58. Francis_X (147 comments) says:

    “nickb (3,573 comments) says:
    February 26th, 2014 at 8:34 pm

    Read s143A of the Tax Administration Act 1994. Specifically, a person commits an offence under that section if they:

    knowingly applies or permits the application of the amount of a deduction or withholding of tax made or deemed made under a tax law for any purpose other than in payment to the Commissioner;

    Matt McCarten has prima facie breached this section vis a vis Unite. Maximum penalty 5 years’ imprisonment.”

    Hell, that’s half the tradies in this country who’d end up behind bars then! Our economy practically runs on rorting the taxman. It’s not just the Greeks who perfected it into a fine art! LOL!!

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  59. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    The Labour Party Players Present. A Tragedy in one act……

    Starring: Blackadder as Silent. Lord Percy as Micky Savage. Lord Flasheart as McCarten! :)

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  60. Keeping Stock (10,267 comments) says:

    @ nickb – there’s an even worse aspect to McCarten’s tax avoidance. If he withheld any Kiwisaver deductions, the staff from whom the money was deducted have lost out on interest on their investments that can never be recovered.

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  61. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Surely he could make a ba..ba..ba..back payment KS? :)

    (Sorry burt/mara/francis_xavier and any other bleeding heart wankers if I have further offended your delicate sensitivities) :)

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  62. geoff3012 (67 comments) says:

    “Stop calling him chief of staff. That is just the bullshit job title they have given their election campaign manager ”

    We’re paying for the prick………typical……..they are unbelievable!

    Wankers

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  63. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Anyway f..f..f..forget Matt. What’s the goss about Micky Savage expecting to get the job? More division in the ranks of the party?

    I suspect deep in the cellars of the Unite Union, tradies (doing a cashie. :) ), will be knocking up a soundproof room with a drainage channel for the blood and brain tissue! :)

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  64. Tauhei Notts (1,682 comments) says:

    Francis_X; you must be a Labour Party dickwit.
    When I studied tax law all offences, except for one offence, had monetary penalties. The one offence that had, at that time, a custodial sentence was naughtiness with P.A.Y.E deductions. It was considered that SERIOUS.
    Cashies was something with a monetary penalty; not prison. A rather heavy monetary penalty.

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  65. gander (91 comments) says:

    wally (58 comments) says:
    February 26th, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Dyson has a husband?

    Akaroa (461 comments) says:
    February 26th, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    Hey Wally at 5.27! (Dyson has a husband?)

    The same thought occurred to me when I spotted that earlier reference to same.

    The only addition to your comment I would make is: ‘This I gotta see!!”

    . . .

    Someone’s got to drive her home.

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  66. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    Matt McCarten has prima facie breached this section vis a vis Unite. Maximum penalty 5 years’ imprisonment.

    I’m sure the Serious Fraud Office are investigating this “crime” as I write this…but it’s great to see so many commenters concerned with tax. How much tax does John Key pay?

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  67. RandySavage (211 comments) says:

    BLOG HYSTERIA!! DPF all over twitter spinning like a top. The man is the McDonalds of the blogosphere, cheap and nutrient free.
    As deep as a teaspoon of sugar water
    In the offline world nobody even blinked when the news broke

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  68. burt (8,201 comments) says:

    On the issue of unpaid PAYE…

    Criminal Charges for Failure to Pay PAYE – Taxation Today, November 2007

    Note below (bolding added)

    Staying Out Of Trouble

    Employers get themselves into serious trouble through ignorantly regarding PAYE deductions and the attendant obligations as just another civil debt. When cash-flow is tight, the creditor whose support is seen as being the most important or who makes the loudest noise at the earliest opportunity is likely to get paid first. This creditor is usually not the tax man, so the temptation to pay other debts in priority to PAYE is obvious. However, as this article illustrates, PAYE deductions are regarded at law as trust funds, with criminal sanctions for their misappropriation. Failure to account for them may have personal consequences far more severe than non-payment of any debt.

    One bit I didn’t bold;

    Failure to account for them may have personal consequences far more severe than non-payment of any debt.

    Seems to be one of the few errors the author has made.

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  69. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (786 comments) says:

    what’s John Key’s tax got to do with stealing your employees’ money Ross?

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  70. Manolo (13,518 comments) says:

    I join the ranks of those who are happy to give McCarten heaps. The socialist crook is a tax cheat and deserves no mercy.

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  71. Jim (396 comments) says:

    @RandySavage thank you for the clear demonstration of failed reading comprehension. Textbook example. Well done!

    Also, I’m not sure that pseudonym is appropriate. Randy savages don’t get a lot of public sympathy these days, all those bruised and beaten offspring…

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  72. Jim (396 comments) says:

    @PsychoMilt

    McCarten’s influence swings Labour left

    Sigh – if only this was even slightly true…

    Damn right again! Matt is a bolder tax dodger than the staunchest of VRWC members.

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  73. OneTrack (2,981 comments) says:

    ross69 – “How much tax does John Key pay?”

    The tax that he is legally required to. Which is more than Matt McCarten can say.

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  74. Yoza (1,778 comments) says:

    Duxton (510 comments) says:
    February 26th, 2014 at 6:38 pm

    Piss off burt! The left are quick to poke the borax at John Key and his ‘lazy diction’.

    Only idiots, Key’s ‘lazy diction’ is how most of us speak. When these arrogant fools make fun of the way Key speaks they are sneering at a massive chunk of the voting public. Making fun of other people’s afflictions, especially when they have worked hard and achieved in the face of that setback is shooting yourself in the foot.

    So, Duxton and Johnboy, keep up the good work!

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  75. Viking2 (11,368 comments) says:

    Matt McCarten’s appointment as Labour leader David Cunliffe’s chief of staff has reawakened a longstanding rift – former Progressives leader Jim Anderton has withdrawn his help for Labour in this year’s election campaign.

    Pehaps Cunnliffe is more cunning than we thought.
    First Labour leader to get rid of the countries biggest trougher..

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11210501

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  76. MT_Tinman (3,099 comments) says:

    And now Anderton has dropped Labour.

    Silent t, the gift that keeps on giving :-)

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  77. Pete George (23,434 comments) says:

    Confusion over McCarten’s role – he has been appointed as chief of staff but most of the talk has been about campaigning, including from Cunliffe, McCarten and Mana.

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  78. thedavincimode (6,627 comments) says:

    A day later and I’m still shaking my head and chuckling.

    Nice little cameo from Comrade McCarten last night on the goggle box: “working class”. It’s gonna be fun. Use that phrase as much as you like Matt!! :)

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  79. Keeping Stock (10,267 comments) says:

    Dead right davinci – David Cunliffe is the Working Class Hero from Marine Parade, Herne Bay, where he lives a “middle-range” existence. Pass me a Tui :P

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  80. Mark (1,471 comments) says:

    Interesting move. I am not so sure I will be claiming a national victory in the election just yet. National needs desperately to get a stable running mate. I dont think the McCarten appointment changes anything other than the potential for some of the green vote to drift back into the labour camp. On the right National largely have to run on their own given the failures of Act and United Future to secure a voting base.

    ACT’s recent appointments may see some improvement with Prebble back in a campaign management and strategic role with a fresh face to put to the electorate thay may be able to drag themselves back from the brink if extinction where Brash and Banks so ably put them.

    The Peter Dunn party simply does not have a future beyond his tenure in parliament and the concervative party is a wait and see whether they can actually get in to parliament pefore they are found out. You have to remain cynical of the conservative christian right however there may well some out there of that persuation who can provide a base of support. Whether they can get to 5% on a sustainable basis is questionable. Craig could however provide some entertainment should he get into parliament and also plenty of work for lawyers as he threatens to sue every man and his dog for poking fun at him.

    I remain nervous that despite Labours lack of popularity and the green economic terrorists fruitloop policies National still only have a 1 seat majority and no reliable allies in the wings and before we all go off celebrating McCartens appointment remember he has been around the traps for a long time and can be a wily enemy

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  81. georgebolwing (769 comments) says:

    We heard Matt M on the radio this morning. You never heard H2 on the radio. You never hear Wayne Edgelston on the radio.

    Labour now appears to have two leaders.

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  82. thedavincimode (6,627 comments) says:

    KS

    Even as you jest, Viscount Cunners is likely running around with a tin of paint and a hammer working on his do-up, while the Mrs is busy breastfeeding his brood.

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