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You’re Wrong Keith: We Have To Do This NOW.

By   /  September 21, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  18 Comments

KEITH RANKIN IS WRONG about Jacinda needing to lose this election. If that’s what happens on Saturday: if National somehow hauls itself back onto the Treasury Benches; then it is the purest folly to suppose that the election of 2020 will be a Labour walkover. If the Centre-Left cannot win in 2017, then the question that begs to be answered is: “Can it win at all?”

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1969: The “Nearly-But-Not-Quite” Election

By   /  September 18, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  15 Comments

“WE’VE GOT IT!” Was the triumphant (if incautious) assertion of the supposedly neutral Professor Bob Chapman on the night of the 1969 “nearly-but-not-quite” general election. The worthy professor should perhaps be forgiven for his premature psephological ejaculation. He had marked down the electorate of Eden as the seat Labour was bound to take if it was on-course to becoming the government.

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VOTE!

By   /  September 16, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  45 Comments

IF, ON ELECTION NIGHT 2017, you end up staring at the numbers in horrified disbelief. If National proves the people at Reid Research are the best pollsters in the business. If the Jacinda Train runs out of puff several percentage-points short of being able to form a government. If the Greens: the dear, earnest, tree-hugging Greens; fall below the 5 percent MMP threshold. If, after all these calamities, you’re casting about in your anger and your grief for an explanation, then reclaim from the back of your mind this crucial piece of information from Elections New Zealand.

As at 15 September, just over a week out from Election Day, “nearly 20,000 fewer young people under 30 [have] registered compared with 2014”.

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This is still a fight: Some thoughts on the Newshub-Reid Research Poll

By   /  September 13, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  40 Comments

Labour thought it could bluff its way through this election with warm fuzzies and vague promises. They assumed that these would be enough because the electorate has grown weary of the National Government. Well, the Newshub-Reid Research Poll has reminded them in no uncertain terms that this is still a fight.

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Let’s elect ourselves a progressive government with the politics of addition – not subtraction

By   /  September 12, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  39 Comments

THE BIG QUESTION confronting progressive voters in this election is: how do they elect a genuine centre-left government? Is this best achieved by abandoning the Greens and delivering the entire progressive vote to Labour? Or, should at least some progressive voters step off the Jacinda Train and re-board the Greens – thereby delivering Labour a reliable and ideologically compatible coalition partner?

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Tales From A Possible Future: Expanding The Tax Working Group

By   /  September 9, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  30 Comments

THE FIRST SIGN that Jacinda Ardern’s would be a very different sort of Labour Government came early.

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5 Candidates For The Seat Of Limerick

By   /  September 8, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  14 Comments

The Nats most magnificent troll

Said: “I’ve just found a fiscal black hole

so impossibly big

that Grant cannot dig

Labour out before the next poll!”

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Trust and Taxes: How National Intends To Derail The “Jacinda Train”

By   /  September 6, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  45 Comments

If they can convince the waverers; the voters on the point of climbing aboard the “Jacinda Train”; that Labour’s numbers just don’t add up. If they can make them feel that if they’re not very careful, then a bunch of so-called “experts” are going to advise Labour to tax their land, their batch, their business, their petrol, their water, their financial transactions, and even their inheritance. If they can inflame suspicion and build mistrust, then – dammit – they just might win.

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Some People: Paula Bennett And National’s Tribal Instincts

By   /  September 5, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  8 Comments

The Police Minister knows that the most effective means of breaking the gangs’ power would be to remove the criminal stigma from unwise drug use. But, like all Police Ministers, Paula Bennett knows that the drug laws are not there to end the misuse of drugs. They are there to create a nether world of criminality and addiction against which the situation of “normal” people may be favourably compared.

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Time For The Media To Become “Relentlessly Positive”

By   /  September 2, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  22 Comments

This clear popular endorsement of Ardern’s political tactics places the media in a difficult position. What social and political influence it retains is based largely on its representation of itself as the public’s first and most reliable line of defence against the banality, venality and downright stupidity of elected politicians. Without us, say the media, there would be no one to protect you from all this despicable trickery and all these terrible lies. You may not like us, but, by God, you need us!

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Tales From A Possible Future: The Mother Of All Scandals Breaks

By   /  August 30, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  31 Comments

THE STORY APPEARED FIRST on an offshore blog. After that, not even the best legal brains at Crown Law could prevent the voters from learning about the “Mother of All Scandals”. The Internet, as always, prevailed over the frantic machinations of desperate politicians.

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Winston’s Latest “Scandal”: Bureaucratic Bungle, or “Political Hit-Job”?

By   /  August 28, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  35 Comments

THIS LATEST POLITICAL “SCANDAL” involving Winston Peters reminds me of The Godfather. Not the famous scene in which Sonny Corleone is assassinated at the toll booth, but the earlier scene in which Michael Corleone realises that there are no staff on duty in the hospital where his wounded father is being treated. The empty nurses’ work station, the silent corridors, the overwhelming sense of something being “off” – all of it communicates a single, unmistakeable message to Michael. This is a hit.

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Transparently Opaque: What, exactly, is the “this” Jacinda is inviting us to do?

By   /  August 26, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  72 Comments

You are only too aware, Jacinda, of what needs to be done to heal the harms inflicted on New Zealanders these past nine years. You also know they cannot be healed on the cheap. Strict adherence to the Labour/Green “Budget Responsibility Rules” will force your government to break its promises – to break your promises.

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Disturbing Signs

By   /  August 24, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  24 Comments

LABOUR HQ needs to upgrade its intelligence. Because out there in the streets there are a host of disturbing signs – most of them their own!

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Pure Magic: Jacinda Ardern Launches Labour’s Election Campaign

By   /  August 21, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  100 Comments

The enormous significance of political magic is made clear principally by its absence. None of Jacinda’s four male predecessors had it. Contact lenses and a new haircut couldn’t make it appear. Speechwriters working in shifts couldn’t summon it. Focus groups couldn’t even tell the party where to look for it. But no Labour member; no Labour voter; had the slightest difficulty understanding that the Magic was passing them by.

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It’s A Question Of Values, My Friends: What The Greens Must Do To Survive

By   /  August 19, 2017  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  18 Comments

New Zealand needs the Greens in Parliament. Not to turn New Zealand into a “thriving green economy” filled with “booming businesses”, but to remind us, at every possible opportunity, that “people are more important than progress”, and that a better world is possible.

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