Quin on inept Labour

July 31st, 2014 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

writes in the Herald:

To paraphrase US comedian Lily Tomlin, who was talking about cynicism at the time, no matter how dire ’s political management reveals itself to be, it’s impossible to keep up.

Last week, I broke a cardinal rule and spent some time wading through left-wing blogs, as well as comment sections on more mainstream sites.

Oh dear.

It is clear the small number of Labour, Green and Internet-Mana Party activists who populate these dusty corners of cyberspace have convinced themselves the media are systematically rallying behind John Key’s re-election and conspiring against the left.

The paranoia is hilarious.

Supporters and activists find it much easier to blame straw-men, presumably along with a mandatory 50 per cent of straw-women, than confront the painful truth that the political operation surrounding David Cunliffe is strategically misguided and tactically inept.

Heh, nice dig at quotas. But an important blunt assessment by a former Labour staffer.

To my mind, the Cunliffe apology for being a man was by far the most damaging of these. According to a Herald poll, only 9 per cent of respondents thought the manpology was a smart move, and yet the overwhelming preponderance of leftist commentary insisted either that Cunliffe was right to say sorry for possessing external genitalia, or that the apology wasn’t a big deal.

My mantra during this pre-election period has been that Labour’s strategists are misguided in their conviction that fewer than 30 per cent of the vote is sufficient to form a viable government.

With others, like Shane Jones and Josie Pagani, I have urged the party to lift its sights to become a 40 per cent party, capable of winning a broad spectrum of voters from all parts of the country.

The sad thing is that many on the left celebrated Jones leaving the Labour caucus, and they revile Pagani and want her gone also.

In particular, we make the case that Labour has all but surrendered in provincial New Zealand, and that this is a strategic bungle of epic proportions.

Labour holds just one seat in provincial NZ, and they may lose that one in this election.

If Labour fails to break well into the 30s, the party president and general secretary should resign and party council members should convene urgently to consider their own positions.

It is not shocking in the context of New Zealand electoral history for John Key to win a third term; what is untenable is that he looks set to do so with a higher vote than either of the past two outings.

As for David Cunliffe, he should resign with grace and alacrity as soon as it becomes apparent he is unable to form a government, which might be far earlier on the evening of September 20 than any Labour voter would wish to contemplate.

I’m told David Cunliffe has made it very clear he has no intention to resign in the event of a loss.

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38 Responses to “Quin on inept Labour”

  1. peterwn (3,271 comments) says:

    Which is all bad news for National as those who would generally vote National might not bother voting on the grounds that it is a shoe-in for National. I also shudder to think that many people just do not understand that the party vote is everything and that they can indulge themselves (apart from a few exceptions) with the electorate vote.

    There are also some who do not want to see any party have an absolute majority, hence will tend to vote for minor parties no matter how nutty they are. A Mr X told me last election he was voting Conservative because he liked their policies and instead could have contributed to a Labour etc victory.

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  2. lolitasbrother (692 comments) says:

    yes but Chris Trotter insists that an inept 30% Dotcrim, money printing, racist Government would be fine.
    Here comes the revolution Chris Trotter, Chris Trotter who previously said that a NZ Nat Govt was inevitable in the face of utter stupidity from Cunliffe and associated collectives.

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  3. thor42 (971 comments) says:

    “I’m told David Cunliffe has made it very clear he has no intention to resign in the event of a loss.”

    That’s *great* for the Nats!
    The ensuing bloodbath will be must-see stuff. I’ll be sitting at home with bubbly and toasting Cunliffe’s stubbornness.

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  4. ross001 (206 comments) says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  5. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    Last week, I broke a cardinal rule and spent some time wading through left-wing blogs, as well as comment sections on more mainstream sites.

    It is clear the small number of Labour, Green and Internet-Mana Party activists who populate these dusty corners of cyberspace have convinced themselves the media are systematically rallying behind John Key’s re-election and conspiring against the left.

    Gold.

    Strike out “left-wing”, “Labour”, “Green” and “Internet-Mana” and replace with “Right-wing”, “Conservative” and “Act” and the mirror image thus generated is also true.

    I am gradually forming a view that it’s best to get your views on politics from people who are not interested… or the very rare people like DPF who can take a side and yet still write coherently about politics!

    Listening to the fanbois is futile and just destroys brain cells…

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  6. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    The Herald wheels out another commenter to criticise Labour. I can only think they pay well….

    Or perhaps Labour really really warrants criticism? Just a thought.

    People like you are the reason Labour only goes from bad to worse.

    Running through the room with underpants (red) on your head, hands over your ears, yelling

    LA LA LA LA LA LAAAAAA – I CAN’T HEEEEEEAAAARRRRR YOOOOUUUU!!!

    Let us know after the election how you think that’s worked out for you ;-)

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  7. ross001 (206 comments) says:

    Phil Quinn presumably advised Helen Clark in 1996 – after she had lost the election – that she should resign with grace and alacrity. How did that advice work out?

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  8. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    Cunliffe will never be the PM of NZ. I’ll tell you that right now.

    He will be remembered as a guy with a very amusing name, who was not very good.

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  9. thePeoplesFlag (245 comments) says:

    “…they revile Pagani and want her gone also…”

    To say they want her gone is to imply she counts for something somewhere.

    Pagani was once a failed Labour candidate. She has managed to spin an entire career as a concerned troll “Labour commentator” out of it.

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  10. NK (1,244 comments) says:

    Now that someone has mentioned the lack of focus by the Left, here is a comment on The Standard about 10 days ago by mickysavage.

    I am getting more and more convinced that the Dotcom emphasis is not helpful. He is dominating valuable media time and although I believe he has been mistreated we need to be discussing the big issues…

    And he’s just becoming convinced of this now?!?!?!?!

    I shouldn’t be offering them advice.

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  11. David Garrett (7,272 comments) says:

    the thing I found most interesting about Cunliffe’s apology for being a man was the fact that far more women than men seem to have disapproved of it…an informal survey among my female friends – who a pretty much all feminists or feminist leaning – confirms that is the case..

    I agree it’s going to be very amusing if he doesn’t resign…but now they have changed the rules to give the caucus far more power, he will be able to resist ousting far more than hitherto wont he?

    Ross…dear boy…the Herald used to pay $250 a column…I think it is less now…mind you that reflects the calibre of many of their op-ed writers these days…the failed UK Labour poli Gould being a great case in point…

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  12. David Garrett (7,272 comments) says:

    “Peoples flag”…every time I see your handle, I see in my minds eye the Palmer cabinet awkwardly singing “the people’s flag is deepest red…”

    They all knew it was total crap, but had to do it to stroke their union backers…plus sa meme chose… as they say…

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  13. NK (1,244 comments) says:

    Oops, this part (see above comment) should have been a quote from mickysavage:

    I am getting more and more convinced that the Dotcom emphasis is not helpful. He is dominating valuable media time and although I believe he has been mistreated we need to be discussing the big issues…

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  14. Huevon (222 comments) says:

    I don’t understand this criticism of Labour. They aren’t being “strategically misguided and tactically inept”. They are acting true to form. Labour says all the stuff about manpoligies, quotas, ostracising people who don’t tow the Party line, because that is what they actually believe! They are low in the polls because most NZers don’t share their beliefs.

    What would you prefer? That Labour pretended to actually have mainstream NZ values and then sneak in their radical agenda once they got elected?

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  15. ciaron (1,434 comments) says:

    What would you prefer? That Labour pretended to actually have mainstream NZ values and then sneak in their radical agenda once they got elected?

    You say that like it’s never happened before :)

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  16. thePeoplesFlag (245 comments) says:

    But anyway – the world has changed post GFC. Across the west, social-democratic parties are moving away from being part of the establishment as they realise that membership of the political establishment and endorsement of the neo-liberal consensus is part of the failure of post cold war capitalism. Socialism everywhere is shaking off the baby-boomer torpor of the past forty years and making itself again fit for purpose – that purpose being the bringing to heal of unearned privilege, the destruction of rentier capitalism and fair pay and a fair deal for the little guy.

    That people like Quinn, Jones and Pagani don’t like that should be taken as a sign that the class war is finally about to be fought by both sides.

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  17. David Garrett (7,272 comments) says:

    The “class war”…you complete idiot!! the only class war fought here was in the minds of the pommy unionists who we foolishly welcomed to our shores along with the others on a ten pound passage who added greatly to our society…

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  18. Nukuleka (325 comments) says:

    lolitasbrother- I also live in the Chch Central electorate and despair that we might have yet another gay Labour MP, wholly out of touch with the aspirations of local families, and pursuing his own gender-driven issues. What do we remember former Chch Central Labour MP Tim Barnett for? His promotion of street prostitution and forcing through the Civil Union Bill, which directly enabled him to get ‘hitched’ to his same sex partner.

    The Labour candidate strikes me as something of a geeky wimp, and I would really like to see Nicky Wagner get more stuck in. I have never seen her in the area in which I live, and am unaware of her doing any door-knocking here either. She has been an excellent MP for the electorate but there seems to be something of an acceptance that she will not hold the seat. Why?!

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  19. Huevon (222 comments) says:

    @ thePeoplesFlag:

    Hope that works out for you, Comrade!

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  20. kowtow (8,470 comments) says:

    Peoples’ flag is wrong about the shaking off of baby boom torpor and the new socialism.

    What is happening is the old conservatve parties have embraced socialist policies, under the guise of “progressivism” and are driving the west further into bankruptcy,social,moral and economic.

    Camoron in the UK is an excellent example and the reaction to it is growing,thank goodness.

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  21. RightNow (6,994 comments) says:

    Is that you Wolfie?

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  22. emmess (1,428 comments) says:

    Last week, I broke a cardinal rule and spent some time wading through left-wing blogs, as well as comment sections on more mainstream sites.

    That’s right, why can I not tell barely any difference between the ideology of the commenters on left-wing blogs and mainstream sites?

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  23. Cunningham (844 comments) says:

    “I’m told David Cunliffe has made it very clear he has no intention to resign in the event of a loss.” excellent let the party rip itself to shreds and then maybe NZ might get a decent opposition from the left.

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  24. David Garrett (7,272 comments) says:

    emmess: If you really cant tell the difference between comments here and on The Stranded then there is not much hope for you…Here’s a clue: One of them isn’t confined to politics…

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  25. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    Mallard, King, Cunliffe, Parker, Cunliffe – Just resign now and stop hurting the once electable Labour party.

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  26. Cunningham (844 comments) says:

    thePeoplesFlag (178 comments) says:

    “that purpose being the bringing to heal of unearned privilege”

    What do you classify as unearned privelage? Someone who owns a house? Someone who is able to save money? What exactly? I am 36, own a freehold house and have $120,000 in the bank. I am in this situation because I studied hard, worked overseas (adn saved a lot of the money I earned) and didn’t blow my money. Am I one who will be stripped of my money in your communist paradise?

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  27. lastmanstanding (1,297 comments) says:

    The real problem for the Left is whilst they can select a one armed dwarf Maori lesbian for a constituency seat in order to fulfill their representative quota the fact is 99% of the voters will vote for a person they can relate to.

    Over the past decade the Socialists have moved further and further away from the mainstream thinking of the majority. Perhaps just perhaps that’s why they are polling in the low 20’s and are destined to poll even lower.

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  28. ShawnLH (5,025 comments) says:

    Have a look at the comments section beneath that article. Bloody hilarious! :)

    The Labour supporters prove his point, but are too dumb to realize it.

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  29. kowtow (8,470 comments) says:

    “that purpose being the bringing to heal of unearned privilege”

    Cunningham.

    What worries me about many people I know (middle class and who do own property and other assets)who bang on about “inequality” ,the “growing gap between the rich and poor”and more recently the push for”equality” ,now absolute equality ,is that they fail to recognise ,in many cases that they are helping to push the socialist agenda.

    A socialist does not believe in inherited or “unearned wealth”. Ideally in a democracy (because they know they have to go to the ballot box) they would introduce a 100% death duty.To level the playing field as it were.They can’t get away with that ,but that’s their ideal.

    So all those pillocks out there who claim to believe in equality,don’t want to pass on any wealth or property to who ever they chose to. No ,they want the state to step in at your demise and seize everything ……… and then “redistribute” it.

    Private property and its rights are a corner stone of capitalism ,any talk of equality is an assault on that.As such it should be resisted.

    We used to have equality before the law,(correctly) but that was pushed to equality of opportunity and now we witness the push to equality of outcome. Pure socialism.The only thing that distiguished it from the commies is how it is to be achieved.We are already a long way down that road.

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  30. emmess (1,428 comments) says:

    emmess: If you really cant tell the difference between comments here and on The Stranded then there is not much hope for you…Here’s a clue: One of them isn’t confined to politics

    When I said mainstream sites, I was referring to the newspaper sites, the NZ Herald site in particular.
    Most commenters there would be at home on the left wing blogs.

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  31. Mark (1,488 comments) says:

    I dont understand why the Lefts activists are bleating about the partisan nature of the media now. The media and I am deliberately using a broad definition has always shared its political bias with anyone willing to read, listen or watch. (In the US it has got to the state of farce if you want to waste time watching Fox).

    But perhaps it is my personal paranoia, I have generally found the media more favourable to the left than the right.

    But the media now has a problem. How do you paint Labour in a favourable light with Cunliffe as leader. So many blunders the media couldn’t even make stuff up that would be half as good for national so rather than bleat at the media they should turn their complaints on their own leadership

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  32. Simon (723 comments) says:

    The proletariat will rise again and be the directing force of the nation once more.

    Tractor production will increase the yeilds of the State collective farms meaning everyone will have turnips to eat.

    But be on your guard as reactionaries will say turnips are not a suitable diet.

    For to criticize a turnip is to criticize the people. Report all such counter revolutionaries so that they may receive the proper re education.

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  33. dime (9,972 comments) says:

    Cunningham – you will be shot. We will probably be in the same mass grave..

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  34. OneTrack (3,093 comments) says:

    Cunningham – “Am I one who will be stripped of my money in your communist paradise?”

    Yes. The lefties want your money. They know how to spend it better than you. Embrace the change. Comrade.

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  35. OneTrack (3,093 comments) says:

    lastmanstanding – “Perhaps just perhaps that’s why they are polling in the low 20′s ..”

    With Cunliffe’s incompetence and their ill thought out “policies”, I am shocked that they are still polling in the 20’s.

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  36. publicwatchdog (2,593 comments) says:

    What I believe will prove to be inept, is National’s putting so many of their political eggs (as it were) in the John Key ‘most popular Prime Minster’ bullsh*t basket …

    As the public find out more about this ‘Poodle of Wall Street’ – I predict National’s PARTY vote will continue to decline…..

    Hat tip to Auckland Councillor Cameron Brewer for giving me this opportunity to ‘seize the moment’ at the Auckland Council Governing Body meeting today in Henderson:

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152596105717889&set=pcb.10152596106377889&type=1&theater

    SO looking forward to the Helensville candidate debates!

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright

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  37. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    Penny Dog –

    Your link doesn’t work.

    But let me guess – you stood up and interrupted the meeting to give a long boring speech all about yourself from the public gallery?

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  38. Paul Williams (878 comments) says:

    Fascinating, I wonder what Clive Mathewson and Jack Elder think?

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