Selfies: Labour’s Electorate MPs are at it again

By   /   July 25, 2014  /   57 Comments

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Labour is heading for the worst defeat in its 98-year history.

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IT’S A LITTLE TRIANGLE of grass at the corner of Rewa Street and Mt Eden Road, ideal for election hoardings. Wandering along Mt Eden Road last Saturday morning to our weekly appointment with the brunch menu at Orvieto, my family and I couldn’t help noticing that overnight an election hoarding had gone up.

The prize for the first of these public symbols of electioneering to appear in the Auckland suburb of Three Kings went to Internet-Mana. But only just. As we walked along, two teams of young men bearing armfuls of timber and Korflute® poured out of cars and vans and into the triangle. By the time we emerged from the café National and Labour had also staked their claims to our attention.

Well, I say “Labour” but, really, the hoarding facing us was all about Phil Goff. It was his ugly mug and buck-toothed smile that confronted the viewer, and his name in bold sans-serif that somebody had helpfully placed a big tick underneath. Oh sure, right down the very bottom you could, if you squinted hard enough, make out the Labour Party’s slogan “Vote Positive”, and yes, there was even an exhortation to “Party Vote Labour”. But, seriously, nobody driving by is going to have time to register anything other than the local MP, Phil Goff, is soliciting their vote.

I’m told this is happening all over the country. That the hoardings erected by Labour electorate MPs are, overwhelmingly, self-promoting. Not the party (unless you have very good eyesight). And certainly not the Leader. (God forbid!) In spite of delivering the worst result in 90 years, the so-called “election strategy” of 2011, promote the candidate – not the party, is being idiotically repeated – by the same idiots!

The contrast with National’s hoardings could not be more stark. They all proudly include a photograph of John Key – either alone or included alongside the local candidate. And there, directly below the party’s 2014 election slogan: “Working For New Zealand” is the concise instruction to “Party Vote National”.

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They, at least, get it.

Not that Labour has nothing to match National’s unashamed promotion of party and leader. I have seen a handful of hoardings bearing just David Cunliffe’s image alongside the slogan “Vote Postive!” But when the local candidates’ images outnumber their leader’s by 10 to 1, the priorities are pretty obviously personal and local. The fundamental message of the MMP system: Only the Party Vote matters! is, once again, being studiously ignored by MPs whose only concern is to retain their seniority in Labour’s faction-ridden caucus.

What this will produce, just as it did in 2011, is the absurdity of Labour plummeting to 27 percent in the Party Vote, but capturing 32 percent of the Electorate Vote. Had those figures been reversed on Election Night three years ago, Phil Goff would now be Prime Minister.

The sad fact of the matter is that Labour’s old guard of deeply entrenched MPs no longer appears to care if National walks away with the Party Vote – or the General Election. Just so long as they keep their seats.

I’m old enough to remember the days when the honorific “The Honourable” actually meant something. Back then, MPs were referred to as The Hon. So-and-So because “honour” was presumed to be the one indispensable attribute of every person elected to represent their fellow citizens. Nobody cared whether or not an MP liked or disliked his or her leader. Nobody wanted to hear an MPs’ opinion about the party slogan or manifesto. Once all those decisions had been made, the voters expected their MPs to go out and promote their leader, their party, and their manifesto as hard and as often as they possibly could. And they did.

That Phil Goff is promoting himself alone, that his leader’s image is being relegated (as his own was in 2011) to the back streets, adds up, in my opinion, to just one bleak message.

Labour is heading for the worst defeat in its 98-year history.

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57 Comments

  1. richarquis says:

    I actually find it the opposite – In the 2008 election, the last time I was in NZ at election time, I hated the fact that every National billboard had John Key next to the local candidate, as it basically shifted the idea from the local candidate to the “JK Party” school of thought. That single vision cult of personality kind of thinking is, in my opinion, one of the major things that is wrong with the NZ political landscape of late. I think having the local candidate’s photo is fine, but not too big – Leave room so the message is clear. But neither Cunliffe nor Key need to be on any billboard except their own electorate, in my view.

    • YogiBare says:

      It seems to me that the salient point Mr. Trotter was trying to emphasise was that MMP is all about the Party Vote, not the local candidate.

  2. e-clectic says:

    Labour – all about them, as individuals – no hook (“vote positive”, how lame is that? devoid of meaning), focused on electorate vote (dumb) – crap
    National – all about John Key, “working for New Zealand” a good message (apart from its inaccuracy s/be “working for foreign interests” – fair
    Internet Mana – “change the government” needs to be bigger, not about them but about change – OK
    Green – “Love New Zealand” (not about them but about us, our country), message to the front and party vote there but not huge – excellent

  3. D-Man D-Man says:

    There are plenty of hoardings with David Cunliffe on them down here in Dunedin. Like mushrooms after a rain, they have sprung up everywhere. All of them seem to be in prime locations. Chris, you have a wider reach and a wider audience than any election hoarding. All the media have an important role to play in this election, we the peasants as you wrote in the ODT voted Cunliffe in. A real leader doesn’t quell the uprising of the people, he becomes a living instrument of their protest. I find your views to be more critical of the left, and more praiseworthy of Key and his minions than your right wing commenter Rodney Hide. Yesterday, on RadioLive’s political panel you referred to an article you had read on Cameron Slater’s Whaleoil blog. Why? why? why?
    It would of being a fantastic opportunity to mention Martin Bradbury’s latest blogs, especially in regards to David Cunliffe. As the election looms, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a pure (unpolluted) source of information. Thanks again Martin for the daily blog.

    • Grant says:

      The fact that anyone would even entertain the idea of entering into a discussion with the lightest of lightweights, Rodney ,(gag), Hide, (the man who criticised ‘The Greens’, as being whackey, for introducing NZ to the idea of a new kind of light bulb, now commonplace; who thinks ,even though numerous children are brutally mauled and disfigured every year, that ‘peoples rights’ to own ‘Pit bulls’ are more important, and who thought water saving showerheads was ‘nutty’, now commonplace,) tells you that he who ‘pays the piper’ calls the tune.
      It brings into the question the whole concept or role of this relatively new media construct, the ‘political commentator’.
      This breed is especially selected to serve the interests of the paymasters of the particular media organisation.
      Like a real estate agent that tells you they are ‘passionate’ about selling your house ,they are not, they are passionate about getting their cheque at any cost. Nothing more!
      Proper, well researched , informed debate is ‘out the window’. Snide innuendo and supposition is in. It’s easy money!
      I’ve listened to and read many and have learned little .What I have learned is that most are there not to inform but to promote.
      The only one I can think of with real knowledge and integrity is Jon Johannson. There are others but they are thin on the ground.
      Chris on his day ,due to his wonderful historical knowledge and eloquent phraseology, can be a joy listen to, but lately his obsession with the abcs has made him sound like all the others. No point of difference.( yawn)
      The whole political scene has become (in the words of Billy Connolly,) ” sleazy,greasy and wee bit oily “.
      In the interests of democracy it’s time to ditch the msm ‘political commentators’, as well as ‘political polls’ , within 6 months of an election.
      They are both being used as propaganda tools individually, as well as in tandem and it needs to stop!

    • Brendon Harre says:

      I drive 100km a day in Christchurch and have not see David Cunliffes face on any bill boards, lots of Clayton Cosgrove though. National has a range of Bill boards some with Key some with the local candidate and some with both.

  4. alex says:

    The disparity between the party and electorate vote makes perfect sense, that extra 5percent would be Green party votes.

  5. Charlieboy says:

    OK Chris I get it, you have said it over and over and over, it’s called “repeating”.
    Who will you vote for on Election Day? I am going to vote Labour. Why? Because they will be a fine government and the alternative is, Parata with her failing education reforms, Brownlee with his disaster in Christchurch,Collins with her corruption,Joyce with his hollowing out of rural NZ and what can I say about Mr Key.
    Let’s put it this way, I believe one day the truth will catch up with him.

    • fatty says:

      You do realise our options extend beyond National and Labour?
      I have seen nothing from Labour over the past 3 years that make me want to vote for them. And to make it worse, I’ve seen little from Labour in my entire lifetime that makes me want to vote for them.
      Does this mean I like National…no! I hate them more.
      Greens and IP-MANA look good though

      • dennis dorney says:

        Absolutely right. We seem to have a proportional voting system imposed on voters with a two party mentality. We get the Government we deserve.

  6. Grant says:

    The National Party, with the giant images of Key plastered everywhere is overkill, looks desperate and would not look out of place in North
    Korea !

    • word says:

      John key thinks he is a president. Most billboards have a John key pic with the candidates name on the back. I can see this backfiring on the John key Party (there no national party anymore), despite what the bogus polls say, John Key is most disliked, and I would have thought people would at least like to know what the candidate in their area looked like.

    • mary_a says:

      Agree Grant.

      Vote for dear leader seems to be the message on National billboards. It’s all about dear leader!

      Bit of an unhealthy cult/dictator ring about it.

  7. XRAY says:

    Geez, this is very dark. I have not interpreted Labours Armageddon from them!

    I recall at the last election with Goff as leader his face was no where near any bill boards except maybe his own one in Mt Roskill.

    Carmel Sepuloni, whom I don’t think is a right-wing fanatic has the same bill board style throughout West Auckland as the current Goff one and indeed so does David Cunliffe himself. And around those generally is a Labour bill board.

    At the other extreme and every couple of hundred metres is the Teflon man himself our dear leader John Key, looking as trust worthy as one of those guys selling genuine Rolex’s for $50 from the inside of his coat in an alleyway.

    Actually once you stop seething, then shivering and dry retching his grinning face gives all the warmth and ambiance of a Syrian border post maybe a village in North Korea. I guess at least in those places there’s no pretence that their despots are working for you as you know you are being shafted for sure and their ugly mugs are only there to remind you so.

    Me I prefer the current Labour ones.

  8. Lara says:

    Billboards like that are SO BORING and they give me no reason to vote for that party.

    I have always wondered, do they actually work? (I know they don’t for me, am I weird?) If they work, why? If not, why do those parties keep doing it?

    Have they done any market research on this before deciding on the message and image in their billboards?

    Actually, I hate billboards with a pic of another smiling head telling me to vote for that person. Hate them. Visual rubbish in our landscape.

    Now the greens billboards are clever. Strong visual images of problems, with an indicator of change and how that change could be effected. Very effective use of advertising space.

    • Wensleydale says:

      Agreed.

      I don’t need a photo of some smug turd grinning obsequiously in the hope I’m going to vote for them. Who are you? Why should I vote for you? What are you going to do?

      Election hoardings have the same effect on me as those saccharine photos of real estate agents you see in the property pages of the local paper — that being to illicit a snort of contempt and vague feelings of nausea.

      “We care deeply about community issues and want nothing more than to make New Zealand a better, fairer place in which to live.”

      No you don’t. You just want to keep your bloody seat. Now shut up and stop lying.

  9. Ovicula says:

    Farrar would have loved to publish this. Why doesn’t Chris Trotter go and write guest blogs for him?

  10. Harry says:

    OMG, Chris, I think here some want to crucify you, but I fear you point out the obvious, and it is shameful for Labour, to so blatantly expose the divisions and mistrust within caucus, where everyone is fighting for his or her own survival now.

    Recent announcements and comments raised eyebrows in me and many I know, and the “Moa Revivalist” Trevor, the “holiday highway” supporter Kelvin from up north (being contradicted by Labour’s transport spokesperson and others), the Mr Nash desperately wanting to regain his seat in Hawke’s Bay somewhere, and others, it is a total mess, as it looks.

    I feel almost as if Cunliffe does not even care anymore, as his recent apologies for earlier apologies sound and look rather weak, if not ridiculous to many, and no sensible person would do such turnarounds weeks out from election date, certainly not a leader. He should have gone full attack on the crap media, and instead, he was throwing a challenge today, but is already considering to back paddle on that later today, I fear.

    I have just recently been informed that I am due to electorate changes now in the Mt Roskill Electorate. I was in it many years ago, living directly in Mt Roskill, now part of former Maungakiekie is Mt Roskill. I am tired of Phil Goff, I consider him one of the biggest blocks holding the reformation of Labour back. He must go, so do some other old “blocks”, who are rather too close to what Nats stand for. So I am considering to not only party vote Greens, I consider voting for the new Green Party candidate for Roskill, Barry Coates, who will hold a meeting at the Zoo Keeper’s Son at 715 Mt Albert Rd in Royal Oak this Sunday, 27 July at 07 pm.

    I will listen to what he may have to say, but so far, he looks a bit more refreshing than what we used to get from old Phil, who has truly achieved enough to go into well deserved “retirement”.

    Given recent developments, Labour members and candidates from caucus now seem “naked”, without clothes, all fighting for a bit of cloth to cover the bare minimum of shame, and perhaps retain a seat here and there. They did not have the guts to even present much in the way of policy for many they should have traditionally really cared about. Apart from Best Start, there is nothing offered for the poorest of the poor, and those on benefits, only a humble minimum wage increase for the first year.

    Where is the “social media campaign” that was supposed to make the great difference? The broadband and internet policy just announced is a disappointment, and I noticed that Cunliffe was rather absent in the last Wednesday debate in Parliament, same as most of Labour, it was Winston and National members speaking. At least Russel Norman had his say for the Greens in the end, but Labour are apparently somewhere disorganised.

    This is going to be a shocker indeed, I fear, so prepare and fasten your seatbelts, I have only desperate hope that they will still make it, something serious and major must happen or be presented now, or else we will face a chilly three more years of the terrible, cold hearted Natzies, I cannot believe that all the good excitement from earlier in the year has just puffed up into the air.

    • Harry says:

      Quote: “That Phil Goff is promoting himself alone, that his leader’s image is being relegated (as his own was in 2008) to the back streets, adds up, in my opinion, to just one bleak message.

      Labour is heading for the worst defeat in its 98-year history.”

      I really dread this to happen, I must say, despite of my above comment, but I also fear that Chris is right, as I have got too much negative feedback from people I talked with, re Labour.

      But to be honest, part of the reason for this are not just some questionable conduct of Labour caucus members, and some failings by David Cunliffe, we have a rather biased media that has not given Labour any chance at all, to present their policies, while they mostly looked for trivial and personal bits to attack them. Also has Chris Trotter repeatedly put the boot in, and not given any of Labour a chance to explain themselves, well, to give sufficient consideration for the policies in question.

      It is too much about some historic reflections, hypothetical conclusions, about polls and what they may mean, rather than what Chris should challenge Labour on, to perhaps present here, to convince potential voters. But then again, would you not expect Labour leaders and MPs to challenge Chris also, to make their points here. Sadly, like on the Standard, we get too little from Labour MPs that convince enough of us to vote for them.

      Red Alert is “dead” and useless, and on TS the comments by even David have been rather over cautious over recent months, so we cannot blame people that read and hear the messages, to give the trust to Labour that Labour expect.

      Something is NOT working again, yet again, dear Labourites, you are not getting through, I am afraid, you are not getting my vote anyway, I am sorry.

      • word says:

        How can they? when everything Labour say or do is put through the media meat grinder. This article is a clear example of that. Im hoping when the election proper gears up, that Labour gets the opportunity to get their word out there.

  11. On a slightly related point, the best election billboards ever, were those of the Alliance in the 1999 general election, which promoted policy in brief, three or four word “bites”. They really did promote the Alliance as a whole as well as the policies it was proud to espouse (free healthcare, free education, expanded state housing – all the things that once Labour stood for).

    I see nothing original in either Labour or National’s billboards, and National’s are only marginally more effective because they trade on Key’s perceived popularity.

    The Labour ones… well… Chris has a point. I find them lacking in anything that might be effective in countering the Cult of Key.

    • tamati says:

      No, the best billboards ever where John Ansell’s creation back in 2005. No question.

    • word says:

      At least people can see who labour’s candidates are. But perception is not reality is it? John Key doesn’t enjoy the love of the people like the media like to portray. The John Key party’s billboards are blatantly egotistical and arrogant. Since when were those failings attractive and worth voting for?

  12. Guesting says:

    I have Sam Lotu-whatisname and Key smiling at me in my electorate. Raises my blood pressure even before I get to work.

  13. Dan says:

    Oh dear, how many more stories are we likely to see on Labours impending electoral disaster. Win or loose Labour needs to be purged of all the rotten wood. But that probably won’t happen and the country will suffer for it.

    • word says:

      The country is already suffering under despot John key, who thinks he is the president AND an All black.

  14. Harry says:

    Me vita revolutionario, por favor:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JcPm5Rn36Kw

    Stay with the course, no matter what!

  15. word says:

    What about John Key’s selfies? an overkill wouldn’t you say? What was surprising was the level of hate that the Labour Billboards seemed to incite. But on reflection of past articles, maybe its not that surprising after all.

  16. mary_a says:

    Most billboards with politicians’ grinning faces on them (particularly the leader), look like a slimy sales pitch promotion, advertising false promises.

    That said, I do like the form the Greens have taken with their slick billboards. The messages are clear and concise. No faces. Simply telling Kiwis how the party will work for NZ. Well done NZ Greens.

  17. Charlieboy says:

    Billboards! Really? Without going out your door, who ya going to vote for? Three more years of Sarky Joyce, the death of reading teaching Parata,the hiding of the underclass by Bennett,the corruption of Collins,or the secrets and lies of the PM.
    Get rid of all this and more, Vote Labour.
    Seriously, three more years of Brownlee, how sucked in do you want to be?

  18. Kate Kate says:

    Amazing stories Trotter, the brainwashing machine is working obviously, forget Sponge Bob Square Pants everyone’s brains are grey sponges and played perfectly by Key’s Crosby and Textor agency. Like a stupid bunch of herd animals repeating exactly what the brainwashers want you to say, amazing stories it actually is working. This country is run by jaded crocks and falling for their bullshit is exactly what they want.
    For the record Trotter what was that brain fart in the Otago Daily Times you wrote, who are you voting for it sounds like slimy Key and his posse of gimps?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/510500/Nats-secret-advisers-accused-of-dirty-tricks-in-Aussie

    • word says:

      Spot on Kate.

    • Jrobin says:

      Agree Kate. Sick to death of your rankings Trotter. Go start up your own perfect new political party and let’s see how you get on seeing as you know everything there is to about political management.

  19. Cagey says:

    Just got back from a drive to the supermarket. Our Labour posters seem to be- 1-Iain Lees Gallaway (in similar style to Phil Goff’s), 2 -a Party Vote Labour sign, with a tick,3 – David Cunliffe with Vote Positive and 4 – Large Vote Positive signs with various ‘everyday’ people in the background. Most of the signs we’ve seen round are the 1st sign next to the 2nd so there is the local candidate – electorate vote plus party vote. National party signs are pretty much – I’d expect the same as everywhere else – mainly John Key & a few with Jono Naylor and John Key. What does this say because – much like last time – there is no local candidate signs without Key. Is this really about ‘selfies’ and disharmony in the party?

    • Marcus says:

      Yes, National’s billboards reinforce Key’s message to all his electorate candidates – “you are only there because of me, without me and my image you are nothing!” Other parties are actually parties, not one-man bands with a bunch of sycophantic followers.

  20. Jake says:

    9 lines in to the piece and its “Ugly mug and buck toothed smile”. No wonder the left are losing. its all friendly fire and back stabbing.

  21. Fern says:

    Re Harry’s thoughtful comments (July 25, 10.13pm):
    This is the worry about some electorates: that a significant number of left-leaning voters might have given up on Labour and so give their electorate vote to another candidate. Result: the left vote is split and the Nat candidate wins the seat.
    Surely the strategy has to be: party vote to the left (whichever party you favour), but electorate vote Labour, even if it means holding your nose and voting for Goff.
    As a Green supporter myself, I would only give my electorate vote to the Green candidate if I thought they stood a good chance of winning the seat, otherwise it’s a wasted vote.

    • word says:

      If you want the Greens in, you have to get labour across that line. Simple.

    • Shrubbery says:

      Except it doesn’t matter if National wins the electorate seat, as it would just put that candidate in parliament at the expense of one of their list MPs. So unless you’re in an electorate vital to the overall election result (i.e. 3rd party candidates with a good shot at winning), or the National MP is worse than the average list MP around where you think National will end up, it is fine to vote for the Green candidate. This is the case in Goff’s electorate.

  22. Michael says:

    The caucus has sent a clear message to the people that its members would rather remain in opposition than form a government led by David Cunliffe. Let’s vote accordingly.

    • word says:

      But its not the caucus though, its the media who have sent that message as they think they can win the election for John Key. You can vote for the contemptuous traitor John key who has sold us out, but Im voting positive. David Cunliffe and labour have got my vote.

  23. Miss Modern Labour says:

    It is rare indeed ,Chris ,for you to omit the words “I remember a time…..” when you harp on about what you see as the decline of the left. The problem is that you are stuck in an ancient past that never actually existed. You are sounding less and less like the wise prophet of the left and more and more like a rather confused (and sadly – nasty) man. We have modern problems to deals with, and you seldom have any useful thoughts on those. Fast-breaking news, Chris, the Waihi Miners strike is over, the Eureka stockade has fallen. When was this golden age when political leadership of the left was more to your liking? And would it not have been enough to say that you did not like to see Phil Goff’s face, without adding “ugly and buck-toothed”. Perhaps back in the “good old days” of your imagined youth it was always okay to play the man and not the ball. A wonderful era it must have been indeed Mr Muldoon, er sorry, Trotter. Phil Goff must have really upset you for some reason I can only guess at… but good on you … keep batting for National – . Indeed, if you keep working on your writing style a bit, you might even get a job working for Matthew Hooton.

  24. Michael Wood says:

    Hi Chris. Phil’s hoardings are going out from my front yard so I’m in a fairly good position to comment! Half are of the kind you feature, and the other half are totally focussed on the Party vote. If you turned around and looked toward Big King Reserve you would see David Cunliffe’s beaming face there. I agree with your assessment that promoting the Party vote is the top priority, but your sample size is simply too small to draw conclusions!

  25. Pasupial says:

    [I posted on TS earlier today, but seems relevant here & am interested in TDB take on it:]

    Or Labour could have taken the recent poll collapse to heart (I don’t trust those touted by the MSM, but they will have internal polls with more rigorous methodology), and decided to go for an overhang; by having more Electorate MPs than party votes. That’d mean they are trusting the Greens, NZF, and IMPs to vacuum up the centre/ left party vote. This’d take more courage and nous than I’ve come to expect from them, but perhaps I’ve been influenced by the incessant media barrage of negativity.

    Throwing a guesstimate into the ECcalculator, lets suppose the election results are something like:

    NP – 40% Party Vote 35 Electorate Seats
    LP – 25% PV 33 ES
    GP – 16%
    ZF – 8%
    IM – 6% PV 1ES
    MP – 1% PV 1ES
    CP – 2%
    UF – 1%
    AP – 1%

    This’d give Labour a 27% proportion of a 122 seat parliament off a 25% Party Vote, by comparison; National would only have 41% off 40% PV. With these numbers; National, Maori & NZF would have just 61 seats (50%) and it would take Mallard doing a Tapsell to let them form a government. By contast, a coalition of; Labour, Greens & NZF (probably with IMPs providing C&S on crossbenches as insurance against ABC defections) would have 63 out of 122 seats (51.7%).

    http://www.elections.org.nz/voting-system/mmp-voting-system/mmp-seat-allocation-calculator

    Of course, this is all conjectural and it’d only take the win or loss of a few electorate seats, or a few points of Party Vote to completely change the election result (eg the right minor parties getting back in rather than having their votes redistributed).

    Don’t let anyone tell you that this election is a foregone conclusion!

  26. Mike the Lefty says:

    Seems Chris that your main point is that you hate Phil Goff, presumably because he is a remnant of the neo-liberal Rogernomics government. Fair enough but hating one candidate from a particular party shouldn’t automatically mean that the rest are tossers too. I also find billboards with grinning faces irritating, there are probably at least 100 billboards featuring John Key’s smarmy visage dotted around my city, but as is often said – any publicity is good publicity. Someone mentioned the Greens billboards – my interpretation is that the Greens don’t want the personalities in their party to overshadow the policies. Must be very confusing for the MSM who are fixated on images and myths.

  27. Harry says:

    With all frustrations there are, perhaps some “progressives”, tending to be more enlightened than the average Joe Bloggs and many in the voting public, fail to realise the fact, that most “common folk” are not as “bright” as they are, and vote accordingly.

    The media have a lot to answer, and while Chris Trotter presents another grim story and picture, maybe he is telling us something, which deserves yet more scrutiny, and digging up, and that is the evident corruption in media, business and political establishments running this country.

    Just too many still adhere to the foolish belief, or misguidedness, that New Zealand is such an “honest” country and society. Maybe it is not, and maybe it is time to wake up, and maybe it is time to tell people the truth, rather than go and try and compete with carrot and lollies throwing Tories, thus trying to gain more votes from easily corrupted “centre ground” folks, who have only their own personal advantages on their minds.

    Labour have tried to get it both ways, and the Nats have put the wedges in, so it is falling to bits, what was thought out, and needs an urgent and solid rethink and redirection, perhaps.

    What about presenting the lies, failures and so of the Nats on one side of a leaflet, and the alternative, social, inclusive and common sense, evidence supported better alternatives?

    I live in one Nat MP ruled electorate, and we have had leaflets from Colin Craig, the Nats (twice now) and the Greens, but NONE from Labour. And it used to be a Labour seat once. So with that lack of “action”, maybe Labour are not getting their act together, to “inform” potential voters?

  28. mpledger says:

    The tag line for National just leaves me itching to do some graffiti (but it’s against the law so I won’t) e.g.

    Working for New Zealand ‘S RICH
    NOT working for NZ’S ENVIRONMENT/CHCH/KIDS/WOMEN
    Working for New Zealand (crossed out and replaced with) MYSELF/MY RICH FRIENDS/USA/US CORPORATIONS/DIPLOMATS/HOLLYWOOD

    etc, etc

  29. Marcus says:

    In my electorate before the last election the Nats were complaining that Labour had their posters and billboards up too early. Well this time they obviously were making sure they weren’t going to be beaten. Their hoardings appeared a good couple of weeks before anyone else’s. Now you can’t drive for more than a few hundred metres without seeing at least one blue board, most of which feature John Key’s “trust me” used-car-salesman grin. The Nats obviously believe that saturation is everything. If you haven’t got a positive message, then just stick with a slick nothing message but if you say it often enough, people might start believing it.

  30. MaxDCoyle says:

    When will Labour begin to learn from their mistakes? Or will it be too late and their party will continue to be eaten by the Greens and Mana until they’re an electorate sideshow?

  31. Stuart Nash says:

    To be fair Chris, this is the design that HO insists that everyone uses. Phil actually had absolutely no choice around size of his photo, size of his name, size or placement of the Labour logo at all. If you really don’t like the billboard, don’t criticize the candidate.

    The other thing mate, stop finding negatives in everything Labour does. There are some legend people who really are spending an inordinate amount of time, money and energy going hard for the cause they (we) feel extremely passionate about – and not all of them are candidates: many are volunteers. To be dissed by you is a little insulting to be honest.

  32. Glenn says:

    New Plymouth has dozens of hoardings of Key around the electorate and yet hardly any labour ones, and no other parties appear to have any. The 3 labour hoardings I have seen all show Andrew Little who unfortunately has a snowballs chance in hell of winning the now true blue New Plymouth. No Cunliffe pictures anywhere.
    The message thats getting across is that Labour know they are stuffed so why bother. May be incorrect but thats what it’s looking like


 
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