Great minds think alike

I was just about to sit down and blog about Labour’s pitiful rip-off of Whale Oil’s Texts from Helen, where Trevor did Txts from JK. I wasn’t sure what was worse – that it was unoriginal, or that it wasn’t funny, or that a man near 60 is doing teenage text speak or that it doesn’t even “fit”. It is well known Helen is an inveterate texter and keeps in touch with many of her former colleagues. While John Key and Jenny Shipley were never even in Parliament together.

But I don’t have to blog all that, as John Hartevelt has done it for me at Stuff:

Sigh. Another day and the Labour Party takes yet another turn for the cringe-makingly desperate.

The party’s chief strategist, their sharpest political mind and the chap responsible for winning the election campaign has this morning come up with this rather lame attempt at humour.

Trevor Mallard’s theft of an overused and not terribly funny concept from a right-wing blogger is just a bit sad.

If it was an isolated example of an odd attack on the PM, it wouldn’t rate a mention.

But ever since the intellectual excitement and esprit de corps that accompanied Labour’s tax policy announcement died down a fortnight ago, a steady drip feed of rather juvenile stunts – many of them played out unthinkingly online – has been issued from a few in the Labour caucus.

Mallard and the Dunedin South MP Clare Curran are the chief mischief makers. A missive from Curran last week seemed to subtly encourage readers to make some sort of a link between John Key and the 1991 US invasion of Iraq, on the grounds that a PR company hired by Tourism NZ to secure a spot for Key on the Letterman show was the same firm that had been criticised for its role “as mastermind for the Kuwaiti campaign”. Good grief.

These have got so bad, that even on Red Alert Labour MPs are getting a pasting for such idiocy. The response is for Clare Curran to do a poll asking people if they agree that Red Alert should be moderated more tightly, with no option for people to say that the censorship there is already way over the top.

Normally you would count on the campaign manager, being the one to tell MPs who are making the party look like idiots, to pull their heads in. But when it is the campaign manager himself leading the charge, well you really do have problems.

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