Comparing front benches

December 20th, 2011 at 10:43 am by Jadis

I thought I’d do a ‘quick and dirty’ analysis of the Labour front bench vs the National front bench based on individual electoral performance.

1. David Shearer holds Mt Albert with an impressive personal majority (23rd highest majority in the country) and took a face-saving 37% of party vote for Labour

2. Grant Robertson holds Wellington Central, but Labour took a huge hit in the party vote (finishing third behind National and the Greens)

3. David Parker holds no seat and barely made a difference in Epsom even at a strategic level (15.5% of party vote for Labour).  It also must have hurt having to tell voters to vote for the National candidate.

4. Jacinda Ardern has now failed multiple times to win a seat.  She couldn’t even get back the Labour stronghold of Auckland Central even with strategic voting by the Greens… scary to think that Tizard can hold that seat but not the anointed Jacinda.  The Labour party vote in Auckland Central was rather low as well (25.4% РGreens just behind Labour on 22%)

5. David Cunliffe holds a pretty good personal majority (over 5000) and, like Shearer, recorded 37% for the party vote in New Lynn

6. Clayton Cosgrove.  Labour website stillsays Clayton holds Waimakariri but he actually lost it to Kate Wilkinson.  Clayton returned 23.4% for Labour party vote

7. Shane Jones failed to win a seat again but did return one of the more respectable party votes for Labour (41.5%)

8. Nanaia Mahuta won Hauraki-Waikato again (by over 6500) and recorded the fifth highest party vote for Labour at 46.5%.

So, in all not exactly a stunning front bench as far as results. ¬†Based on electoral performance, the Cunliffe/Mahuta combo certainly is more formidable than Shearer/Robertson but Shearer and Robertson are the ‘nice guys’.

Now let’s have a look at National’s front bench:

1. John Key recorded a  massive electorate vote (won by over 21,000) and party vote at 65.8%

2. Bill English also recorded a formidable electorate vote (won by over 16,000)  and party vote at 62.9%

3. Gerry Brownlee won Ilam by over 13,000 and a very respectable party vote at 60.4%

4. Steven Joyce, doesn’t hold a seat and didn’t stand in one in 2011.  However, as the Campaign head could claim the 48% party vote across the country

5. Judith Collins won the Papakura seat by almost 10,000  and captured over 59% of the party vote

6. Tony Ryall won Bay of Plenty by a massive 17,000+ and captured over 67% of the party vote

7. Hekia Parata lost Mana  but is closing the gap in a traditionally Labour-held seat.  Recorded an increase in the National party vote to a reasonable 42%

8. Chris Finlayson is a  List MP.  At an electorate level he only captured 33% of the party vote for National but this was an increase from 2008.  Annette King proved herself once again  to be a formidable opponent at electorate level.

Both front benches have a mix of electorate and list MPs, however based on the last election it is easy to surmise that National’s front bench have (as a whole) also done the work at the electoral level (even those only seeking the party vote).


How long will Shearer last?

December 13th, 2011 at 1:57 pm by Jadis

Bryce Edwards has an interesting piece on the Herald online.   Bryce suggests it is a bold move to elect Shearer in the hopes he can go head-to-head with Key.  Bold to the degree that Bryce suggests Shearer needs to perform within the next two years or he is gone; rolled by Robertson. I give Shearer eighteen months.

My learned Labour contacts suggested to me before the vote even took place that it didn’t really matter all that much who was elected Leader of Labour. ¬†Their view was that the victor would never be the next Labour Prime Minister. ¬†We are seeing Labour lurch from Phil ‘fill-in’ Goff to another fill-in guy. ¬†Shearer’s going to find it tough. ¬†He’s backed more by Labour’s old guard but without the real depth of relationships (or indeed institutional knowledge of the Party) while needing to reach out to the more progressive members of the Party. ¬†Shearer has a timeline worse than English ever had. ¬†Shearer may not even see an election.

And, despite the lauding of his CV and comparisons to Key, Shearer is no Key.  Key had the opportunity to develop from the more helpful part of the electoral cycle, and proved himself head-to-head with Cullen first.  Shearer has been rather clumsy in his debates to date, and that was against Cunliffe.

Let’s also take a look at Grant’s stellar record. ¬†Well, does he really have one? ¬†This is a guy that everyone likes. ¬†I do too. ¬†BUT has he really performed. ¬†He’s held two very substantial portfolios in the last term, Tertiary Education and also Health. ¬†He didn’t make any real public inroads into either portfolio area and certainly didn’t execute any great hits on Ministers, particularly Ryall in Health. ¬†Indeed, Health is usually relished by opposition parties because constituents come to opposition MPs with stories of hardship and difficulty within the health system. ¬†Usually, opposition MPs can pummel the Government with these stories of poor performance, waiting lists and more. ¬†Where was Grant on those stories? ¬†Biding his time, flying below the radar awaiting that moment where the “nice guy” can take over.

I suspect Grant will be a competent Deputy. ¬†He is good at organising people, taking on a role very much like a deputy Principal while Shearer shines in the public sphere. ¬†But why choose a guy like Grant to be your Deputy? ¬†He’s a likely contender to your own leadership who as the Deputy can stoke the fires at home (in the Leader’s corridor and in the House) while you take a nice road trip around the countryside letting the voting public get to know you.

And then there is Cunliffe. ¬†He can wait, watch and receive. ¬†Wait for it to turn to custard. ¬†Watch the Shearer lack of political experience while Robertson undermines. And, receive the “we should have chosen you” and “come to my office for a chat” conversations that will inevitably occur.



And the small(er) donations matter too

July 26th, 2011 at 5:29 pm by Jadis

The 3rd of July seemed like any other Sunday for a collection of social league football players. ¬†That was the case right up to the end of half-time when, while walking back to his position in defence, ‘Big Dave’ (otherwise known as Fabio) collapsed to the ground. ¬†He had a massive heart attack right there on the field.

He was lucky. ¬†He had his own teammates and opposition players who had some idea of how to do CPR and mouth-to-mouth (or the big “man-kiss” as Dave likes to call it). ¬†He also had a nurse on the sideline, a Dr walking his dog, and St John ambulance who responded in time to shock Dave’s heart back into some semblance of a rhythm. ¬†He has since had a quadruple by-pass… not quite what you expect at 39.

As a way to say ‘thank you’ to all those people who played a part Dave’s team is putting together a fundraiser to coincide with the re-match of the game that was never completed (despite Dave believing it really should have been). ¬†The team has a lot of community support so it will be a family fun day (bouncy castles, face painting etc) and the opportunity to watch some decidedly average football – from a covered stand.

  • From 10.30am, Sunday 31 July at Porritt Stadium and Wanderers Clubrooms, Hamilton. Kickoff at 11am

‘Big Dave’ is not the sort of guy you’d expect to have a heart attack. ¬†He is called ‘Big Dave’ because of his height, not his weight. ¬†He is a fit specimen of a man – thus the secondary nickname of ‘Fabio’. Dave and the team want this Sunday to be an opportunity to raise a bit of money for St John and to also highlight the importance of us all having some knowledge of CPR and first aid skills.

The game is in Hamilton. ¬†If you can’t make it I am sure that St John’s would be happy to receive a donation from you. ¬†St John provide a huge range of services to the New Zealand community and they have recently been recognised as being New Zealand’s most trusted brand. ¬†If you don’t know CPR or your skills are a little rusty then look up the location for a training course on their site.

Goff struggling to attract the numbers

July 15th, 2011 at 2:52 pm by Jadis

Labour List MP Sue Moroney has been tweeting excitedly about the crowd who attended a public meeting today with Hon Phil Goff:

Before getting too excited, Sue should really ask around to see how many people turned up to last week’s public meeting with Hon John Key. ¬†Even going by the Waikato Times numbers there were twice as many people who turned out on a stormy night for a Q and A session with the PM. ¬†Actual numbers attending the PM’s public meeting were more than 300.
Surely today was the best timing  for Hon Phil Goff.  He is at his peak.
  • It is the day after his and Labour’s big tax package announcement
  • It is a beautiful sunny day in Hamilton
But Phil and his local List MP could only attract 100 people. ¬†It’s a hard road to the election for Goff.

Twas Jadis

July 4th, 2011 at 11:27 pm by David Farrar

TVNZ reports:

Many people have also commented on the book’s timing, including prominent blogger David Farrar who said it was “appalling in itself” and that “Wishart has chosen to market the book during the coronial inquest into the death of the twins”.

In a statement to ONE News, Wishart also said the book’s timing was “appalling”.

However, he added it was not intentional and that “the only positive is that it has created a strong national debate on child abuse”. The story broke after ONE News contacted Wishart following a tip-off.

Wishart said it was not true that the publicity for the book, which is being published by his Howling at the Moon company and is due for release at the end of the month, was deliberately timed to coincide with the inquest.

My guest bloggers do not post often, so it is an easy mistake to make. But those quotes in questions come from Jadis, not me. If you scroll down the main page, you’ll see her listed as the author for the posting on 29 June at 10.26 am.

The site doesn’t list authors on individual archive pages, only the main page. I have on my to do list to get that changed.

The sterilisation debate

March 4th, 2010 at 3:24 pm by David Farrar

Bloody Jadis. I turn my back for a few hours and she does a post on sterilisiation of child abusers after listening to Michael Laws on Radio Live. David Garrett comments, and suddenly it is in the newspapers, on Morning Report and all over the blogosphere.

I suppose time to add my own 2c to the debate:

  1. Absolutely against any compulsory sterilisation. Apart from the fact no surgeon will operate on a non consenting patient, the state should not have the power to remove someone’s fertility.
  2. Not supportive of the proposal to pay child abusers to get sterilised, as it will only target poor child abusers, and may be thin end of wedge.
  3. However am open to having a debate on whether one could have it as an early release incentive for people who have been convicted of child abuse and actually gone to prison.

One of the reasons we send people to prison is to protect the community. If someone is sentenced to three years jail for child abuse, then is the community better protected by having them come out at 2.5 years and unable to have more children, or at three years and likely to have more children, whom will grow up abused, and in turn probably becomes abusers themselves.

By not having a monetary incentive, it removes the potential problems of being more attractive to poor child abusers.

Also by limiting it to people in prison, and convicted of child abuse, it means you target the worse of the worse.

I’m sure there are strong arguments against such a policy also, and I am not saying I support it without question. But unless one just wants to wring your hands about the child abuse problem, it may be a more palatable option than monetary incentives which I would not support.

Name suppression of sexual offenders

January 13th, 2010 at 1:19 pm by Jadis

I have been thinking further on the name suppression issue.  I understand that the legislation applies automatic name suppression to alleged sexual offenders in cases where a minor is involved, or where the relationship with the accused means that the victim can be identified (or when you are really really famous).  Why?

Why does being the victim of a sexual attack mean that an individual shouldn’t be identified?  If the attack had been of a physical nature would name suppression be put in place?  And, just to exaggerate the point further, is the honour killing of rape victims by relatives in some countries (to cover up the attack and the way it tarnishes the family) just a more brutal version of a similar moral instrument in our society.

And, no, I’m not suggesting that we specifically name victims… just that using possible victim identification as the reason for perpetrator name suppression is… well… trite.

It seems that we as a society (and through our legislation) have applied a moral code.  We have decided that to be sexually abused or attacked means to be broken in a way that is unsuitable for others to have knowledge of.  As a society we have decided that people who are sexually abused might have their reputations besmirched by being a victim of such an attack.  Of course to move away from that would mean allowing victims (or an adult in their place) to have more say as to whether perpetrators (and potentially they as victims) are named.

Again, I ask you if it would be different if a well-known man had allegedly physically beaten his step-daughter?  Would he require the same sort of name suppression?

Name suppression (of the alleged or convicted perpetrator) has the possibility of actually putting sexual abuse victims in more of a box, to isolate them further and to effectively make it clear that we as a society don’t want to talk about that sort of thing.

I’m not saying there isn’t a place for name suppression… more challenging the reasons behind it being a necessary or automatic measure in some cases.

I’d also like to place some faith in the justice system so do think it is important that a person has the potential for a  level playing field before they go through trial to be found guilty or otherwise.