Why National have most to fear from Kim Dotcom’s new Internet Party

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I think National have the most to fear from Kim Dotcom’s new Internet Party. Some have speculated that the Greens and Labour will have the most to lose in terms of voters splitting their vote, I disagree. A small loss is possible for them, but for Kim Dotcom to get to 5% he will need to draw far more from National than Labour and the Greens.

I think all those urban professional male Gen X National Party voters who don’t derive an income from the Dairy Industry will find Kim Dotcom’s economic vision a genuine way forward and they will find it difficult not to vote for him.

Urban professional male Gen X National Party voters vote National out of default, appeal to their logical sensibilities and watch them change that vote. Many would feel their cosmopolitan skin crawl at the idea Key will cut a deal with a religious social conservative like Colin Craig and while that disgust isn’t enough to make them vote Labour or Greens (and they aren’t crazy enough to vote NZ First), Dotcom’s Party could very well be their protest vote in 2014.

Dotcom’s new political vehicle will cross the 5% threshold if it is an outsider party for insiders.

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21 COMMENTS

  1. For Gen X’ers who’ve never known anything except Neo-Liberal New Zealand, a Dotcom Party would be a perfect vehicle for their highly individualised, technocratic aspirations.

    With National developing an Old Guard corporate-cronyist reputation for themselves, and Labour representing a more collective approach to our social and economic problems, Dotcom could offer a viable alternative to the anti-establishment urge that lurks beneath the surface of each new generation.

    A kind of Kiwi version of Ross Perot, maybe.

    Will Dotcom’s party get of the ground? Yes and no.

    At the beginning it will attract attention and support.

    But it may also attract a fringe, nutty, Libertarian group – those who think that Victorian England was an ideal representation of their beliefs (http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2012/09/30/neo-liberal-libertarian-holds-up-victorian-england-as-model-for-success/).

    Just as Dunne’s United Future Party attracted a screw-ball group of MPs in 2002 and ultimately self-destructed, Dotcom’s party could face a similar fate unless he is very, very astute in choosing candidates.

  2. We can only hope the Dotcom party will have a negative impact on National.

    This election will be very interesting. There are the two court cases pending, the first in March and the second in July, both involving Kim Dotcom and John Key.

    The revelations emerging from both trials could result in a whole new political game play during the last quarter of the year. If the truth emerges from either hearing, we could see John Key squirming quite uncomfortably!

  3. I humbly disagree. I actually think that Icarus is flying a bit too close to the sun here.

    Having said that, Dotcom is a master marketeer and not a bad strategist either and never shy to spend up big. Let’s see how much he’s got. He has also surprised me in how much he is able to take on.

    Time will tell, he would attract all kinds of votes, but not the left, he is a capitalist after all – and a big one as such.

  4. Completely agree. I posted something similar on Vernon Small’s recent article where he claimed the left will lose a slice of their vote, and I argued that in fact it’s the libertarian end of the right wing spectrum which will bleed votes to Dotcom.

  5. I can’t see any point in voting for a party like Dot.com if the only reason is to scare National. I can’t see them shivering with fear because of some Fat Cat German millionare. What can he offer that National has already given the rich ten percent? The only way to depose National is a ninety percent plus voter turn out.

  6. There are a few ‘ifs’ here, but here it goes:

    If the Dotcom party does purchase enough electoral magic to cross the 5% threshold (and the rumour is a $3m campaign purse), what would be KDC’s command to his proxies in Parliament?

    A lot of people think he would attach to the Labour and Green Party bloc. I disagree. Dotcom wants the FBI dogs off his heels. He wants to beat John Key into shape. He wants to influence a legislative agenda that will assist his business interests. If his party makes it, who has shown he’s up for sale… more than any other party leader?

    John Key.

    Every time Key is in a corner he deals. And every time he does, I’m reminded of this lyric from the Leonard Cohen song I’m Your Man:

      If you want a driver
      Climb inside
      Or if you want to take me for a ride
      You know you can
      I’m your man.

    So let’s get real… If the KDC party has the decider votes, Dotcom’s loyal MPs would support National on confidence and supply and dictate to Key what legislation would pass the Legislature and what would not. That way, KDC remains significant throughout the term.

    If you disagree, I ask you, if the KDC party supported Labour-Greens-Mana what would he get? Answer, zilch.

  7. If KDC is just after revenge (or doesn’t actually want to be in parliament) then using the Bob Jones New Zealand Party strategy is perfect for undermining another party.

    Admittedly Bob Jones wanted to get rid of Muldoon so that he could get Roger Douglas into power but the principal is the same: To take a party out of power all you need to do is steal some of their vote and let it go to waste.

    Given that everyone is predicting a close election KDC would only need to take 1% of the party vote away from National and he would have a significant effect on the election result. And if he doesn’t cross the threshold then all the better, the votes are wasted and he can resign from the party straight after the election having achieved his aim just the same as out good friend Bob did in 1984.

  8. I could never vote for someone who supported John Banks with actual money.

    Surely no Greens / Mana / Labour voters would either?

    DotCom’s support of Banks shows where his political ideas are. Far right.

    • I assume it’s quite normal when you’re wealthy to donate to a mayoral candidate in the city where you live. To be fair to Dotcom, when he donated to Banks, he may not have been in the country long enough to have known where Banks fit in NZ’s political history. I think you’re drawing a long bow to assume his politics are “far right” on the basis of that one incident. I think you’re also being a bit cynical. Whatever his views before his arrest, and his participation in the united front against the GCSB Bill, they may now be quite different.

      I think Aaron’s comparison with Bob Jones is probably closer to Dotcom’s strategy than Selwyn’s.

      • Surely Dotcom had time to assess the candidates and decide if he supported the left candidate or the right one? I guess it’s possible he might have guessed that on the balance of probabilities the candidate from the right was likely to be the more feckless of the two, and therefore more likely to take money for favours, but either way, he wanted favours for his money and agreed to split the donations to help Banks hide them.

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