Authoritarian Labour: Why Kelvin Davis needs to STFU – and soon!

By   /   May 30, 2014  /   70 Comments

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DAVID, MATT, SOMEBODY – PLEASE! Tell Kelvin Davis to pull his head in. His outburst on Radio New Zealand’s Morning Report this morning was way beyond embarrassing. The ill-considered slagging of Hone Harawira and the Internet-Mana Party (IMP) not only reflected poorly on his own political skills, but it also raised doubts about Labour’s overall ability to read what is happening in the run-up to 20 September.

Kelvin-Davis-cartoonDAVID, MATT, SOMEBODY – PLEASE! Tell Kelvin Davis to pull his head in. His outburst on Radio New Zealand’s Morning Report this morning was way beyond embarrassing. The ill-considered slagging of Hone Harawira and the Internet-Mana Party (IMP) not only reflected poorly on his own political skills, but it also raised doubts about Labour’s overall ability to read what is happening in the run-up to 20 September.

It wasn’t just the absence of any semblance of strategic – or even tactical – understanding that was so worrying about Davis’s performance this morning, it was his barely concealed aggression. There is an anger in Davis that calls into question his suitability for any kind of public office. Anger, and what appears to be a classic authoritarian character structure (the two often go together).

Just listen to how he describes his family in the potted biography Labour has displayed on its website. Davis tells us that he is “married with three beautiful, intelligent and respectful children”. It’s the use of the word “respectful” that gives him away. His need for respect and his use of the word as a distinguishing character marker, as in: “My children show me respect – do yours?”, tell us a lot about Davis’s personality and where he most likely fits on the Left-Right/Authoritarian-Libertarian grid.

My guess is that he occupies a position that places him towards the Authoritarian end of the Authoritarian-Libertarian gradient and well to the right on the Left-Right spectrum. He is very far from being the first Labour MP to be so located. Indeed, it would have been impossible for the Clark-led Government to have introduced so many pieces of reactionary Corrections and Justice legislation without the presence of a solid rump of such individuals in Labour’s caucus.

The authoritarian character structure does not, however, confine its political influence to law and order issues. Authoritarians tend to be threatened by just about any form of behaviour which deviates from what they define as “normal”. If required to do so they will tolerate “deviant” behaviour and life-styles, but their toleration should never be mistaken for acceptance. In the company of trusted “normal” colleagues, their true feelings will be aired – and seldom in a tolerant or accepting way!

The other give-away contained in Davis’s biography is his almost total reliance on education as a means of lifting families out of poverty. “Kelvin is passionate about improving outcomes for Maori and believes education is the vehicle that will enable Maori to fulfil their aspirations.” While no one can sensibly dispute the role education plays in enabling social mobility, when it is held up by politicians as a universal panacea, then their advocacy usually merits closer scrutiny.

Does Davis believe education is the Maori people’s best hope because, liberally interpreted, education draws forth from every individual both the self-knowledge and the self-confidence needed to live a full and self-determined life? Or, does he measure the value of education in terms of its ability to inculcate the social, political and economic values of those who control capitalist societies like our own? Is it because this latter type of education turns out individuals who are “fit for use” by those whose business it is to use them?

My concern is that Davis belongs in the second camp. How else should we interpret the statement that: “He believes that Treaty settlements are but the cream on the cake, and not the cake itself – he believes that education is that path that Maori need to take to enable us all to achieve greater health, wealth and happiness.”?

Surely this is an assimilationist view of Maori development? And isn’t the word “education” being used here by Davis as a sort of code for “equipping Maori for a place in the world that global capital is daily reconfiguring”? Is he not lining up alongside those who insist that Maori cultural identity is best relegated to a subsidiary, “off duty”, status? That Maori are best advised to let the sugared cream of monetary compensation, via the Treaty settlement process, obliterate the bitter taste of their people’s defeat and dispossession?

If this is, indeed, Davis’s view, then his barely concealed aggression towards Hone Harawira is readily explained. Not only is Harawira’s warrior persona an affront to the former intermediate school principal’s sense of order, but Harawira’s vision of a decolonised – an emancipated – Maoridom, is diametrically opposed to Davis’s vision of a New Zealand in which the well-paid servants of global capital might just as well be Maori as Pakeha.

Bluntly stated, Hone stands for everything Kelvin despises. Moreover, in the eyes of this angry representative of authoritarian Labour, the IMP can only be seen as a deeply subversive assault upon neoliberal capitalism’s core ideological values.

And what can Davis possibly make of Kim Dotcom? A highly successful capitalist who refuses to take the power of money seriously? A capitalist who plays with his money, makes merry-hell with it, and, now that the Powers-That-Be have come after him with armed policemen and extradition orders, is using it to carve a path to power – using Hone Harawira, Laila Harre, Annette Sykes and John Minto as his hammers and chisels.

Labour needs to decide – and quickly – if the authoritarian Davis really is the very model of a modern Labour MP that he (along with many others in the party and the news media) sees himself as representing. If he is, then it will be war in Te Tai Tokerau and throughout the country, and John Key will win the election. If he is not: if Labour wants to be seen as something more than an aggressive hard-man bereft of all strategic and tactical understanding; then someone has got to make Kelvin Davis STFU – and soon.

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70 Comments

  1. Jack says:

    Cunliffe needs to give Davis a call asap.

    Mana/Internet Party could be Labours saviour in getting into Government and Cunliffe becoming PM, it also sticks it up Key & Collins for not following the Electoral Reform Recommendations, I would like to see it backfire on them for trying to manipulate the system.

  2. Geoff Lye says:

    Right on we don’t want this crap.

    We have had enough of it fromn the currnet government with out more of this crap after Sept 20.

  3. Allan Alach says:

    If memory is correct Kelvin worked for a while in the Education Review Office. There’s nothing else that needs to said.

    • Lily says:

      No the Ministry of Education. Doesn’t mean to say he knows it all. they don’t. If they did Maori achievement would be rocketing. it’s not.

  4. David says:

    Good piece Chris

    Totally agree, labour need to lose some deadwood.

    A clear move to the left as Cunliffe intimated at during the leader selection would clearly differentiate the left from the toxic right that we currently endure, rather than more of the same bullshit.

    • fatty says:

      “Totally agree, labour need to lose some deadwood”

      True, but now Stuart Nash is calling Hone a racist. When the up and coming are deadwood, it’s probably time to give up on Labour.

  5. Lindsay says:

    ‘Davis tells us that he is “married with three beautiful, intelligent and respectful children”. It’s the use of the word “respectful” that gives him away. His need for respect and his use of the word as a distinguishing character marker, as in: “My children show me respect – do yours?” ‘

    Interesting that you interpret the respect Davis describes as being for him. If I described my children as respectful (I never have) it’d indicate how they deal with people in general.

    My only experience of Davis is the way he treated other commentors on the Red Alert blogsite – with respect.

    And in the RNZ interview he identifies three other areas important to him. Along with education, reducing domestic violence (not very ‘authoritarian’) te reo and the local economy.

    You claim he is an embarrassment and aggressive. Compared to Hone?

    • the pigman says:

      Although a rallying cry, CT’s article does veer towards a smear: how he feels the limited information he presented justifies this sort of psychoanalysis is anyone’s guess!

      I don’t think Kelvin campaigning in Te Tai Tokerau is the disaster Chris makes it out to be. Moreover, if Kelvin threw the electorate, the howls of corruption by the media would be almost deafening. They are already in anonymised-editorial (paid for and written by Crosby Textor, one assumes) mode and the panic is clear: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/10101511/Editorial-Politics-deserves-better-than-this

      No cups of tea with Hone. Just a good-natured contest. I didn’t hear Davis’ RNZ interview, but if it was as bad as CT makes it out to be then, yes, it would probably pay for Kelvin to be a little more velvet-gloved.

    • fatty says:

      Thanks Lindsay, it’s always great to hear right wing trolls on here – Gosman and IV get a bit boring after you play with them for too long.

      Are you still spending your time trying to further dismantle the remains of our welfare state?
      It’s no surprise that you’ve got your trumpet out for Davis. Maybe you should run on behalf of the ACT party?

    • BJ says:

      Agree with Trotter. Quite a shocker. Aggression barely concealed. A total lack of the political smarts. Davis sang the same anger-loaded tune when losing to Hone (of whom I am no fan) at the last General Election. Is this the sharpest pencil in the pack the LP in TtT can find ? Hone, by contrast, was just that today – a smart, sharp contrast – from which Davis this morning might learn a lesson or two. Sadly, not holding my breath on that one while ever-hopeful there will be a Labour-led whateveritmightbe post Sept. 20 !

      • BJ says:

        Agree with Trotter. Quite a shocker. Aggression barely concealed. A total lack of the political smarts. Davis sang the same anger-loaded tune when losing to Hone (of whom I am no fan) at the last General Election. Is this the sharpest pencil in the pack the LP in TtT can find ? Hone, by contrast, was just that today – a smart, sharp contrast – from which Davis this morning might learn a lesson or two. Sadly, not holding my breath on that one while ever-hopeful that there will be a Labour-led whateveritmightbe post Sept. 20 !

    • When an ex-ACT candidate like Lindsay Mitchell expresses a defense for Kelvin Davis – I need say no more.

    • Priss says:

      So you’re THAT Lindsay Mitchell? The one who writes to the paper bashing beneficiaries all the time? And now you’re writing to support Kelvin Davis??

      i don’t think Kelvin would be very appreciative.

  6. Pete says:

    I know Kelvin Davis has to play the game which sees National ousted. Play a strategic, cunning, anything-goes game to get one more seat than National. Do anything to win by one vote.

    He is seeing things in an old fashioned sense, trying to run it from his own goal line to score a try in the last minute when what might win it is a boring as hell 37 phase movement in the first half, smashing it at the line and only finally coming out with a penalty goal.

    The tragedy is that so many scumbags who will support John Key even after he has sold his mother and our schools could be saved by the decision Davis makes. They don’t deserve it.

    It all might be academic of course. Annette Sykes might win her seat.

  7. fatty says:

    He seems to have stepped into Shane Jones’ empty, stinky shoes.
    Firstly I’m surprised that these idiots think it’s in their interest to fight with the people who are doing their work. Secondly I’m surprised that the Labour strategists don’t put a muzzle on them.

    How many Labour voters are looking at this and shaking their head and thinking – maybe it’s time to stop voting Labour, they can’t even see the obvious.
    If Labour continue to pick fights with their best hopes, then the sensible voters will move on

    • Lara says:

      Thank goodness for the Green Party. A viable left alternative to Nat Lite.

      • Peter Archer says:

        Agreed. As a Labour Party member, I am totally SHOCKED by Davis, and, IMHO, he has no place in any pparty that I am a member of. Either he pulls his silly head in, or one more Labour Party member might well jump ship and join Mana!

        This is NOT a way to change the govt! If Davis carries on like this, we may well lose on Sept 20th.

    • Lily says:

      Pretty clear form comments in The Standard comments to Mickey Savage’s blog about what LP should do.

  8. KathyM says:

    Well Chris I don’t often agree with you but getting Kelvin to stfu is something i can getr behind.
    Not sure about your tenuous character assassination of Davis but that’s largely irrelevant anyway.
    stfu kelvin davis indeed.

  9. AlistairC says:

    This article is unwarranted character assassination. Sure, Cunliffe needs to rein him in, if he’s saying stupid stuff and harming the brand. But a superficial psychoanalysis which appears to be based on a bit of googling and the fact that he is Maori… Spare us.

  10. Andrea says:

    Mr Trotter disagrees with Mr Davis’s world view. Fine.

    Mr Trotter calls upon Labour to ‘do something’ to rein in Mr Davis. Not fine.

    For me, a very surprising piece from Mr Trotter who has not previously shown this aspect of his world view. The sentiments expressed do not appeal to me at all.

    Given that Mr Davis has previously done reasonably well in an election perhaps his views accord with the voters in his area.

    Mr Davis’s views may be old-fashioned or lacking in je ne sais quoi – so what? They are a legitimate part of the political spectrum. They can therefore be given expression and representation using the vehicle of the Labour movement.

    Perhaps this disagreement could have been aired in the privacy of the party’s internal debates. Flinging it out into a public space 114 days before an election simply gives traction to those who say the ‘left’ is riven with factions.

    • fatty says:

      “Flinging it out into a public space 114 days before an election simply gives traction to those who say the ‘left’ is riven with factions.”

      I’m not sure I agree with that. So it’s the response to a faction that gives the impression of a faction?

    • Lloyd Jordan says:

      “Given that Mr Davis has previously done reasonably well in an election perhaps his views accord with the voters in his area.”

      good god he lost badly to what was a fledgling party that had very little support on the ground and in the bank…

  11. Give it a break Chris. Go for a holiday for the next few months. Should Labour do a deal later on? Too early to say yet.

  12. I will say this, though…

    Throughout the day, I’ve been pondering Kelvin Davis’ words on the development of the IMP Alliance, and have to admit that my conclusions ran parallel to Chris’.

    For Labour to conduct itself – through Kelvin’s comments, and Cunliffe’s statement that Labour will fight hard in Te Tai Tokerau – indicates a pattern of born-to-rule arrogance than I’ve only associated with the Right.

    If this is to be Labour’s style – fighting anyone and everyone around them who is not a Party faithful, in a kind of Stalinist style – then they will succeed only in alienating the support of centre-left activists.

    Isn’t it ironic… supremely ironic… that the Right Wing – those proponants of the Cult of Individualism – can act more collegially and collectively for their cause, than the Left, who are supposedly collectivist in nature?

    When I think of the sweat from activists who walk kilometre after kilometre delivering leaflets; spend long hours working to put up hoardings; endure abusive reactions when door-knocking; and all the other hard work in a campaign – only to have the likes of Kelvin Davis (and others) indulge in the politics of selfish personal ambition – then, for a moment, I despair.

    How can we expect the country to draw together and work for the common good when our candidates and party hierarchy can’t work alongside others who share similar goals?

    On the 4th of May, I posted this on my blog;

    To the god of politics,

    I thank thee for the incredibly shitty week you have delivered to the Tories,

    I thank thee for showing my New Zealand compatriots what the Nats are really like,

    I thank thee for lifting up the spirits of the Left,

    And finally, I beseech thee,

    Please don’t let Labour or Greens or Mana f**k it up!

    Amen.

    http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2014/05/04/a-prayer-to-the-god-of-politics/

    So much for praying to non-existent deities…

  13. I’m sorry, but why is this guy even in the Labour Party??

  14. Patrick McGuire says:

    Wonderful ! The gloves come off !!!

  15. Marc says:

    Quote: “My guess is that he occupies a position that places him towards the Authoritarian end of the Authoritarian-Libertarian gradient and well to the right on the Left-Right spectrum. He is very far from being the first Labour MP to be so located.”

    I guess so, but he is also outspoken against domestic and other forms of violence, like for instance the “roast buster” offenders.

    Kelvin Davis is just a typical Labour MP, who is firmly grounded in the centre, rather than to the left though, and he seems to also be getting the full support by David Cunliffe.

    Labour are still dreaming of getting over the 40 per cent mark, I’d say, and this means, they will do all to appeal to the middle ground, and also the soft National voters, or rather swing voters, who gave up voting for Labour from the 2008 election onwards.

    So it should not suprise us that Davis is intent on winning the Te Tai Tokerau seat. I think that Davis has a dim view of Hone Harawira and MANA, now the Internet Mana Party. It seems he and Labour want to take on the gamble and go it alone, without making any deals and without even considering depending on IMP for support in a new government. In that they are no different to National, and they share the view that it would be “mad” to have a 4 or 5 party coalition or confidence and supply form of government, as it would be too fragile.

    It remains to be seen, whether Cunliffe and Labour will stick to this approach still shortly before the election date, should IMP poll close to the 5 per cent mark.

    For Hone and Laila and others in the IMP it must mean, that they have to try all, to gain 5 per cent of the vote, which is not impossible, but a real challenge.

    If they manage to attract young voters, who have not usually voted so far, their support may make a real difference, but if they do also get too many votes from people that so far may have voted Greens, Labour or New Zealand First, they may stuff up the chance of a change of government, as it will not strengthen the opposition parties as a block.

    So we will have to see.

    • Lloyd Jordan says:

      you forget that at present we have a 4 headed coalition ruling the country, by all their constant protestations are stable and trustworthy, why would a coalition of 4 on the left be unstable?

  16. Lily says:

    Totally agree Chris. Always thought Davis was a light weight regarding Maori education. Very little analysis and new ideas to move forward. I don’t think he has the intellectual capability to actually move forward on this apart from doing the same things he has always done and expecting a different result. But I haven’t heard what he thinks should be done yet. No doubt the word academies will appear in his strategy somewhere. If he got his head out of his arse he would see that the IMP is very relevant for Maori and especially ‘his people’ in the far north. Unless of course this could all be smoke and mirrors on Labour’s part. Let’s hope. Anyhow the MSM love him. Basking in this glory will be short lived once he loses the election for Labour. They’ll look pretty stupid turning up to parliament, wearing their halos in the opposition seats.

  17. mary_a says:

    I heard Kelvin Davis’ comments on National radio and if I didn’t know better, I would have sworn, he and Labour are trying their best to block the Mana Internet alliance!

    Listening to the interview I came to the conclusion Davis and Labour did not want the Mana Internet party to have any influence at all in Parliament, to assist the left form a coalition, for whatever reason, I don’t know.

    My response at the end of the interview was WTF, why is Labour and Davis doing this? Almost as if they were working on behalf of National, giving Key & Co a cruisy ride towards forming the next government!

    For the benefit of the country, Labour and Davis should be focusing on running a soft campaign in the northern electorate this election, to allow Hone and the Internet party to have some clout in Parliament for the next three years!

    If the left work together, that includes Labour, it is possible NZ could have a strong coalition government next term.

  18. countryboy says:

    Machiavellian

    |ˌmakɪəˈvɛlɪən|
    adjective
    cunning, scheming, and unscrupulous, especially in politics. a whole range of outrageous Machiavellian manoeuvres.
    noun
    a person who schemes in a Machiavellian way.
    DERIVATIVES
    Machiavellianism noun

    Confederate

    adjective |kənˈfɛd(ə)rət| [ attrib. ]
    joined by an agreement or treaty: some local groups united to form confederate councils.
    • (Confederate)relating to the Confederate States of America: the Confederate flag.
    noun |kənˈfɛd(ə)rət|
    1 a person one works with, especially in something secret or illegal; an accomplice. where was his confederate, the girl who had stolen Richard’s wallet?
    2 (Confederate)a supporter of the Confederate States of America.
    verb |kənˈfɛdəreɪt| [ with obj. ] (usu. as adj.confederated)
    bring (states or groups of people) into an alliance: Switzerland is a model for the new confederated Europe.
    ORIGIN late Middle English: from late (ecclesiastical) Latin confoederatus, from con- ‘together’ + foederatus (see federate) .

  19. This isn’t Chris Trotter’s best. He sounded more like a psychologist. For all I know he has qualifications in that respect but I am unable to see how he can extrapolate from comments on radio that someone is “authoritarian” and of the libertarian “right.” The Internet-Mana Party is about a political strategy available under MMP. The National-Act Alliance used it in Epsom for Rodney and Banks and no one was more authoritarian than former Police Minister Banks. He had a soft spot only for animals. This strategy is political not psychological and there is a definite chance that Mr. Davis in Tai Tokerau will win for Labour and upset Internet-Mana’s best laid plans. That’s politics.

    • Robert says:

      Your comment suggests you understood little, if anything at all , of what Trotter was on about.

      • Lily says:

        Lots of trolls reading the daily blog today. Usual scores way down. Also negative comments in public forums way up. NACT trolls must be out in force. Starting early people. How many likes will I get for this?

  20. Olwyn says:

    For one thing, it would be crazy for Labour to pump too many scarce resources into the left-versus-left contest in Te Tai Tokerau if their actual aim is to unseat National.

    For another, as MANA well understands and some in Labour purport to understand, NZ has reached the stage where the left now MUST stand up to the establishment or hang up its boots. The treatment of KDC, the land clearances in Glen Innes, the nightmare that is Christchurch, the treatment of beneficiaries etc, etc, all point to an establishment running out of control, partly due to the weakness of both the left and the media in holding them into account. A few more brown faces with “project manager” on their CVs, and able to throw their weight around along the rest of the NZ establishment, will go nowhere toward countering this state of affairs.

  21. Kingi says:

    Wouldn’t it be great to be a fly on the wall and listen to the discussion between Davis, Cunliffe and Matt McCarten? I can’t see McCarten backing up Kelvin on this.

    • Ovicula says:

      I can’t understand why people put so much faith in McCarten. What have we actually seen him achieve since he accepted the position with Cunliffe? An increase in the retirement age? A more strenuous opposition to IMP than to NAct? What if this rubbish is actually McCarten’s influence at work?

      I think we’re falling for our own cults of the individual here. Cunliffe hasn’t changed Labour, McCarten doesn’t seem to have done much so far, yet we expect Laila Harré to bring in a socialist paradise. We’re playing the spectator game far too much, when we should be involved in pushing and dragging these people towards the policies we need. We can’t sit back and hope they’ll do it all for us. People on the ground should be letting Davis know that his approach is unacceptable. We don’t need another Sealord Jones.

  22. Tim O'Shea says:

    If indeed this is “smoke and mirrors” by Labour “strategists” (do they have any?) then my call is that it will back-fire on them, even if they do an about -face just before election day, as it’ll be seen for what it is.

    I suggest that David Cunliffe goes on to Phil Goff’s FB page and reads the numerous comments from obviously stunned and disappointed Labour supporters on Goff’s outright attack on Internet Mana. Look at the comments both for and against his post, check out the # of likes on each. Look at the common theme in the comments about Labour being out of touch.

    As Marc, Fatty, Frank and Mary-A have all expressed above (and further substantiated on other TDB posts over the last couple of days), the vast majority of intelligent and genuine left voters want to see Labour and Greens and IMP collaborating and cooperating to ensure a strong new progressive govt. If the Labour Party, and certain badly disguised Green Party trolls, continue with these arrogant, immature, self-centred snipes at IMP, then many left voters will jump ship, and then how stupid will you look on the wrong side of the fucking House !!!

    As Frank has said, if you can’t work together and play nicely in the sandpit now, what chance have we got when you go to “big school” ?

  23. quentinf says:

    I’m not certain about the IP and suspicious about Dotcom’s role as a party ‘visionary’ I will reserve judgement for several months until actual policy comes out. However, that being said I agree with Chris overall. MMP politics has never been a forte for some in the Labour party. If it had been Laila would probably still be in Parliament.

    • Lily says:

      Policy is coming out if you go to their website. Policy decided and developed by party members. Totally democratic and collaborative process. Open and transparent. different to he usual policy development process but thats how the IP rolls.

  24. Marc says:

    What Kelvin Davis and Labour should learn from the formation of the Internet Mana Party is, that they better get their acts together, and include policies in their election year campaign, that will reach and convince the many young and other non voters.

    Rather than simply lashing out and trying to ridicule or discredit the rather smart, strategic formation of IMP, it would be better politics to play fair and simply offer more good policy that will get more votes, also from the disenfranchised.

    Labour have of course discovered that housing will be a leading issue in the campaign, and that National and ACT are weak and vulnerable there. But the constant repetition of introducing capital gains tax, building a 100,000 homes (with too little in facts and figures being presented so far, that this will lead to more “affordable homes”), and of their Best Start election year carrot to new parents, and so forth, the set of policy is so far a bit limited, and we want to see and hear a bit more.

    I am still astonished that Labour is largely ignoring the 300,000 or so on benefits, who happen to not just be poor single or married parents, but also many single persons without kids, who want to see a fairer treatment, especially those with sickness and disability, who cannot work, but are now in some cases pressured to try and work.

    This is an area that no party has so far addressed, except Jan Logie from the Greens, who raised some if this in recent speeches.

    Today the Greens delivered an additional policy, to extend free doctors visits to those up to 18 years old, and I hope they will also offer some sound policy in welfare, where those few that are sick and disabled actually get real support to take on suitable jobs, and not get scared and pressured by WINZ, to prove again and again, that they suffer permanent conditions and so. Endless assessments, and “intensive” case management is putting expectations into WINZ clients, to “perform” and “deliver”, while employers are not asked to do much to stop discrimination and poor treatment of disabled and other workers:

    http://accforum.org/forums/index.php?/topic/16092-work-ability-assessments-done-for-work-and-income-%E2%80%93-partly-following-acc%E2%80%99s-approach-a-revealing-fact-study/

    http://accforum.org/forums/index.php?/topic/15463-designated-doctors-%e2%80%93-used-by-work-and-income-some-also-used-by-acc/

    But it seems this is stuff Labour want nothing to do with, so few affected on benefits will see any motivation to vote for them. Labour has firmly decided to fight for the “middle ground” vote, on housing and mostly middle class welfare.

    • Lloyd Jordan says:

      after richardson slashed we were promised a return to pre slashing rates, 9 long years of labour in power and nothing.. so far this election nothing..why would I vote for a party that is racked by ultra right wing faction to take over the government benches.. when i can vote for a party that says nobody should be without… labour you lost my vote after 84 nothing you have done in the years since has made me stop and revisit that decision

  25. Karen says:

    Perhaps one day Chris Trotter will write something negative about a right wing party. I live in hope.

  26. Michal says:

    As someone said Labour hates anyone more to the left of them more than they hate National. This shows up too many of their own flaws.

    Totally off topic could Jim Mora stop have Brian Edwards, another Labour darling as the foil to Michelle Boag on his show, he hasn’t been left for years and I regard her as rabid right wing.

    • Win says:

      Totally agree with what you’ve said. Boag is so aggressive and Edwards has been in his privileged position for so long he’s lost touch with the left. I thought Jim Mora was moving to the National midnight show. Bit of a waste of space where he is now. Heard him come out with some ‘interesting’ theories eg did you know the more teeth you loose the less intelligent you become. No I have all, no most of my teeth.

  27. OCA says:

    Your article highlights a real issue for the left.

    Kelvin Davis’s attitude towards Hawariwa and the contest over the TTT seat is indicative of the many competing agenda’s, political ego’s and power plays that are starting to manifest themselves amongst left leaning parties. If you throw Winston Peters and NZ First into the mix as well, then the issue is accentuated even further.

    With the election only about 4 months away, the turmoil associated with this will only intensify in my opinion.

    If there is anyone who is able to harness all of this into a coherent left wing response to the government that person will be a truely inspirational leader indeed.

    • Grant says:

      There is only one person capable of that and his name is David Cunliffe.

      Cometh the hour ,cometh the man!

      • Lloyd Jordan says:

        well he has already sided with davis so i would not hold your breath, there might be a last ditch change of mind when the polls refuse to budge but it will be too late then.. if he hasnt recanted within the week doom is looming for the country as a whole not just labour

    • e-clectic says:

      All the leaders and their honchos need to get a room, lock the doors, drink a heap of strong liquor, abuse the crap out of each other and get all the differences out on the table. Then figure out if they can be friends or not, although not necessary just how they’re going to win the election.

  28. BellyWho says:

    The more options voters have on the left – the more it seems Labour move towards the right! We need a real left wing govt not simply an alternative to National!

  29. Dan says:

    “That Maori are best advised to let the sugared cream of monetary compensation, via the Treaty settlement process, obliterate the bitter taste of their people’s defeat and dispossession?”

    I was flying along with you Chris until you unleashed that clanger.

    Northern Maori (Ngapuhi et al) invited the Crown to NZ “twice” to protect them against the Southern Tribes and the French. Maori were not dispossessed at all. After the treaty all land sales prior to February 6 were adjudged null and void and had to go back through the legitimate Crown/Tribal land buying process.

    Truth goes a long way Chris and despite the NZ education system selling the “we wuz robbed” storyline history records otherwise for anyone that has the time to check for themselves.

  30. Melulater says:

    Quite frankly I’m wary of the Mana-Internet Party coalition. Hone has some good ideas – but he’s a volitile package. I’m still figuring out how Laila and Kim fit with each other.

    But David Cunliffe’s stated aim is for Labour to run their own campaign and let the voters decide where the chips fall on 20 September. He’s not negotiating any coalitions before knowing the lay of the land.

    I see Kelvin Davis following that stated aim. He and Hone will battle it out in Tai Tokerau and may the voters get the man that gets the most votes.

  31. fatty says:

    And now Stuart Nash is doing John Key’s work for him…

    So we have Goff, Davis and Nash bashing a party that is doing nothing more than representing Labour’s core values. I guess we can call IP/MANA bashing one of Labour’s core policies?

    Does someone want to tell Stuart what party his great-granddad would be standing in if he was alive? It wouldn’t be National-lite, that’s for sure.
    Also, for neoliberal apologists such as Nash, he needs IP/MANA and Green voters to give their electorate vote to him if he wants to win Napier. If I was living there, as an IP/MANA voter, I wouldn’t give him my electorate vote.

    Labour voters have been calling for leftist policies from their party for years, and now that a party has emerged to their left, Labour begin bashing it. Can someone please tell me why I should have any faith in Labour?

  32. Maama says:

    Both Goff and Davis need to pull their heads in. If they keep their diatribes up my party vote is going GREEN. Wake up Labour – you can’t make any changes on your own – you need all the Left leaning parties to get rid of this government.

  33. Tim O'Shea says:

    Adapt or die ! This is a time of momentous change. Things are moving more quickly than ever before. The businesses that thrive are the ones who evolve to meet the changing needs and requirements of their customers. The ones that don’t will survive but will never lead the market. Some businesses will shrink considerably, some will go under.

    Those that do the best are agile, nimble, innovative – they are the quickest to understand their market, and have the vision and nouse to open up new markets !

    Is Labour going to be successful like Samsung, or slip out of the back door like Kodak ? Maybe their time has come? Are they showing a deep understanding of their “”customers” and their market? Are they even LISTENING, or are they just plodding on doing the same thing, making the same mistakes, not adapting, not evolving ?

    Maybe it’s time for a new and genuine party of the left?

  34. Patrick McGuire says:

    Kelvin will have been so pleased to received your advice about how ‘to do Maori’.

    • fatty says:

      I’m pretty sure it was a response dude.
      You’ll find it was Kevin who was the first to talk about how to do Maori.
      Looks like he needs to learn how to do MMP, how to do Labour, and how to not be a dick

      • Mort says:

        You mean like having no self respect, no respect for the party or respect for the voter?

        No? OK, how about having the ability to make up uncosted policies on the fly? You know, the policies of envy?
        No? OK, How about being transparent with your incoming donations when you’re demanding this of all the other parties?
        No? OK, How about appointing people due to their knowledge, experience and abilities rather than their gender, race or sexuality?

        Until David Cunliffe, Labour and the left can start getting some credibility in their parties and policies, Waitakare Man and the rest of central vote isn’t going left even if pushed with a 40 foot barge pole.

        • fatty says:

          I have no idea what you are talking about there Mort. Did you post in the wrong thread?

  35. Have just read Stuart Nash’s comments. https://twitter.com/StuartANash/status/472557819447607297

    Yesterday I read a similar comment from another Labour MP.

    I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that Labour is planning to sit this election out by undermining it’s potential coalition partners.

    I can think of no other possible explanation for making such self-destructive, asinine comments that undermine potential coalition partners and create the perception that the Left is, indeed, fractured.

    It’s not National/ACT that we’re having to contend with here, it’s Labour.

    Quite simply, I am left gobsmacked at what is going on.

  36. Priss says:

    Labour Party voter here. Or should I say EX-Labour Party voter.

    I’m disgusted at what I’ve been hearing from some Labour candidates and if that’s the road they’re going to take, then the Greens can have my party vote.

    Enough is enough. STOP BEHAVING LIKE SPOILED CHILDREN WITH AN OVER-INFLATED SENSE OF ENTITLEMENT!!!!!!!!!

  37. e-clectic says:

    An unintentional outcome of the IMP is that it has demonstrated how unfocused and dysfunctional Labour really is. At least, Labour can now see how much work they have to do – and fast.

  38. […] The Daily Blog:  Authoritarian Labour: Why Kelvin Davis needs to STFU – and soon! […]


 
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