Is Russel Norman’s spite rant against Hone & Laila deflecting Green Party election failure?

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Russel Norman – you are the leader of the Greens, you are not Trevor Mallard on roids.  

My criticism of Russel Norman’s bizarre and ill spirited spite rant against Hone and Laila has provoked an adolescent and juvenile response on Twitter from Russel…

Screen Shot 2014-10-05 at 5.09.25 pm

…and Russel is 100% right. As a champion of Internet MANA I was terribly, terribly wrong and I offered up my slice of humble pie the very next day on how wrong I called it. I honestly believed that if NZers saw the real Dirty Politics/Mass surveillance John Key, kiwis would recoil from him. Helen Clark was crucified for signing a painting she didn’t paint, a speeding ticket, energy saving lightbulbs and water saving shower heads, Key’s henchmen on the other hand were alleged to have blackmailed an MP, hacked Labour’s computer and downloaded their entire database, were handed SIS information to embarrass a political opponent, attacked public servants and planned a corporate hit job on the head of the SFO. Add to that the mass surveillance falsehoods exposed by Assange, Snowden and Greenwald and it never occurred to me NZers would vote for that.

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In the end, Nicky Hager was right. Dirty Politics worked and hoping to reverse 6 years of media collusion with Key’s black ops team in 6 weeks was in hindsight a false hope.

Kim is the first to admit the demonisation of him damaged Internet MANA, and I’ve given my thoughts on the Moment of Truth, but to blame a wronged person whose only difference is that he has the wealth to fight back for the well co-ordinated hit job he suffered at the hands of the media and Government seems churlish in the extreme by Russel. To put the boot into Hone, Laila and Kim by buying wholeheartedly into the mainstream narrative while refusing to criticise that media for their abdication of fourth estate responsibilities  is beneath the leader of the Greens.

If Russel is now through with blaming everyone else for the election result, will he be turning that same level of Canberra viciousness to his own performance as leader of the Green Party? Here is a leader who said 15% was their target, a Leader who has had plenty of exposure, plenty of years in the media spotlight, a Leader who has had every advantage while Labour is in disarray to push the vote up.

So what the hell happened then?

I certainly believed they had 15% in them, great candidates, a solid set of policies, some which cleverly managed to straddle the left/right divide and seek voters from the soft blue without alienating their environmental base, so what went wrong?

Well, apart from a pretty lacklustre appearance from Russ who seemed to think it was all a bit beneath him at times, the Greens ran the worst billboard campaign of any election I can remember. Their weird ‘Love NZ’ Billboards looked like they were promising more traffic congestion, child poverty and polluted rivers – they didn’t look like the political solution at all. The messaging was ill conceived and had as much marketing success as abattoir slaughter house photos bearing the McDonald’s ‘I’m loving it’ logo.

Where’s Russel’s responsibility for that messaging decision?

The entire country was plastered in these weird billboards, and managed to  communicate nothing but negative gut reactions. The party machine on the day once again failed to spark and the lack of traction despite the Greens large social media footprint are all questions Green members should be demanding answers to. Seeing as Russel promised 15% and managed to under deliver by 30% – is it time to call into question his Leadership in all of this?

If under performing by 30% while slagging off Hone, Laila and Kim and moving the coms team to the centre is the best Russel can manage, perhaps Green supporters might start asking aloud what could a Kevin Hague co-led Green Party alongside Metiria achieve instead?

Russel’s behaviour in all of this is beneath the leader of a political party, his spite rant and the twitter insults he followed his tweet to me up with are more graceless boor than the actions of a genuine leader. Personally disappointing for him and embarrassing for the Greens.

Russel Norman is much better than this childishness and the Greens can’t be happy having their brand now associated with bitterness. Russ needs a herbal tea and a massage.

It is sad in the extreme that Hone can continue to show more dignity in defeat than Russel Norman has ever managed in his years of victory.

After bashing Hone, Kim and Laila, I’m waiting for Norman to now attack Nicky Hager for publishing Dirty Politics to excuse his election result.

71 COMMENTS

  1. Yep….don’t go a -slaggin’ off Hone , Laila and Kim please…this country would all be the worse off without em….but then again….it would be worse off without the Greens as well…

    Reckon its time for that stiff upper lip and take it on the chin thing…we will all do much better to not look for scapegoats and quietly get on with working towards co operation.

    There’s a saying….an old one , a cheesy one….but its true….

    UNITED WE STAND , DIVIDED WE FALL.

    Take heed of it , all ye people on the Left.

    • Yep, the people of New Zealand voted. United we stand (60 seats plus 4), divided you fall (assorted rabble looking in all the wrong places to blame the wrong people for their own failings).

      • And one other thing to creeps like you and a message for the Left in general……SOLIDARNOS’C’……

        Or else you encourage morons like old speedy GONZO -ALES here to dream a dream that will eventually turn into his own worst nightmare…..as you can bet he is not one of the idle rich 1% , nor is he a geopolitical mover or shaker , nor is he instrinsgic in world affairs……just another rank and file Joe public…worse…a brainwashed one that thinks those same above will give him anything at all for his efforts except hollow , mocking laughter…

        Just another dupe being set up by the same neo liberal oligarsh overlords…and worse…thinks Keynesianism is something that John Key shits out his arse evry morning during his ablutions period.

        At least try to get some semblance of nouce about whos really playing you for a fool before you opine about a system that ISNT designed for your benefit.

        Dumbarse.

  2. It seems to me that the direction the Greens are taking is ruthless pragmatism. It demonises any party on the Left to it (InternetMana), and it flirts with National. But for me, that’s not enough. Environmental movements must be about social change, and not compromising on your beliefs. It’s about changing the rhetoric. I think the Greens experimented in this recent election; what if we adopt a more centrist position and declare our love for markets in the hope we get some sort of populist vote. This failed; it’s time to grow the vote by going back to the roots, by promising genuine alternatives rather than slightly tweaking the status quo (an ultimately meaningless exercise that does not engage with the consciousness whatsoever), to capture the empty space that Hone has left.

    And it’s about changing the rhetoric: by standing tall and standing firm, not riding the wave. Before, Green politics promoted a message about “consuming less” because this is how you save the environment, its such excess and needless and destructive consumption that’s destroying it. But the ruling elite and corporates have successfully managed to change the rhetoric to “consuming better.” Now you see all these green products in stores that people are making so much money from. But this distracts from the point: consuming better makes little difference, it’s still consumption, it still supports the treadmill of production, it’s still plundering limited resources, destroying communities and exploiting workers. It’s still damaging the environment and things will never change if we continue this track. But this is how successful the change in rhetoric has been; and it’s something we need to change. New Zealand is the world’s worst country in regards to biodiversity loss. Now that is a fact – but a fact you don’t hear because the rhetoric’s changed. But it hits you hard: our economy is a subset of the environment, and not the other way round. Our environment is our life support system. The earth will continue to be here once human life is gone. But we’re destroying our life support support systems that support us. Flora and fauna are fundamental to our lives, and without it we are nothing.

      • The thing is, recycling has such a little effect on the environment. Yet a lot of environmental focus is placed on recycling despite the fact that it has the least effect out of the 3 R’s.

        That is a good article you are referring to which brings up some interesting statistics.

        Here are some statistics related to New Zealand:

        – 2788 species in NZ are threatened with distinction. And that’s only the known figures, which is quite limited due to the lack of funding.
        – We’ve drained 90% of our wetlands, removed 70% of native forests and negatively altered the natural function of most of our rivers. (We altered everything to suit us with total abandon).
        – We have let the power of the business lobby to keep the ecological truth hidden and to convince us that the economy is of prime importance, that it is more important than the environment (and this in turn has influenced government and social policy).

        So now we have a bigger picture about the scale of the matter. We’re not doing anything way near enough to prevent and save any of this. The problem about Green politics is that it gets swept into the political system, they now have to play the game. But what we need to propose is a different game. It’s going to require a lot… but maybe this recent election tells us that going the centrist/populist way is not the way to go. The Greens may have been ”on message”, but maybe this was not the message that captivated the people who did not vote or who aren’t even enrolled to vote. Maybe this election gives us a mandate to ditch the centre.

        • The problem about Green politics is that it gets swept into the political system, they now have to play the game. But what we need to propose is a different game.
          A different game was what IMP was bringing which is why it was so strongly opposed.

          • Indeed, e-clectic. When Labour, National, NZ First, and the Maori Party attacked Hone Harawira, it was clear that he was a real threat to the current market-oriented system.

            Otherwise they wouldn’t have bothered with a small party that could barely have mustered two or three MPs.

          • A different game, but in all, the same.

            IMP was funded by a rich benefactor. Like most other parties, and Cabinet Club etc.

            When the only genuine left wing party feels it needs the resources of Kim Dotcom in order to be competitive, there’s something wrong with the system.

            I don’t think it was IMP’s policies that were opposed. Kim Dotcom certainly ended up being strongly opposed. I certainly did not hear the media report on any of them. Except cannibis – that got a lot of airtime. IMP got a lot of airtime, in fact, for everything but the policies.

        • Hear, hear, Heteroglossia, here we hear you.
          It’s pointless to sit in the centre, to save rocking the boat, while the boat sinks below us. Rock ‘n roll, and make some noise.

          • Indeed, but, it is what the majority of MPs in the Labour cuacus have insisted on doing, and the Clark govt also. Sitting in the Centre, for the sake of the baubles of office, while the boat is sinking under all of us.

            And, this election, the Greens attempted to do the same, and some of their supprters turned away in disgust. BIG lesson in that!

            • The ‘majority ‘ of the Labour caucus sit in the center because it helps them to stay under the radar regarding their allegiance with National.

              Why?…simply as has been said time after time in the TDB….

              Because they are fifth columnists strategically stationed to ensure the labor unions are constantly opposed and drowned out. The unions , – if militant – are a direct threat in overturning such acts as the Employment Relations Act…

              These sniveling neo liberal impostors are the cancer in the Labour party that work towards keeping egalitarian values and policies marginalized.

  3. Here is a leader who said 15% was their target

    The Greens received 15% of the Special Votes! The page showing that, and full breakdown of Special Votes by party, has been removed from the Electoral Commission’s Election Results page. WHY has it been removed? Who decided it had to come down? The page showing the advance votes is still there (at this time) – Special votes have at least as much relevance to any insight into election voting.
    http://www.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2014/partystatus.html

    • @Manuka – what you state is evidence then that our electoral system is open to and possibly subject to manipulation!

      If the page has been removed, then what else has been manipulated this past election?

      • I’m just asking for it to be restored, so that we can all look at that breakdown of the late voting. There is an equivalent page for the early votes – the Special Votes page matched that – but with different results. The early votes and the finals were more similar.

        I wasn’t looking for anomalies but when I thought about it later, the jump from 9-10% to 15% is quite a leap really, for the Greens. I don’t remember the others – I thought there would be plenty of time to go back and have a think about them all. Then the page was gone. Wish I’d taken a desk shot.

        Does this mean we would have to put in an OIA request to see it?

        And who asked for it to be taken down? Mr Anadarko?

  4. The Greens hardly went centrist this time around.

    They were still the only real left alternative for people put off by dotcom. And they simply were not popular for it. There is always only going to be a set percentage of the vote you can gain if you hang out on the extremes. If you play it like National and have a foot in both fields, it opens it up.

    The thing is the Greens offered nothing more but the same old tired dogma that people have heard time and time again, and rejected time and time again. Tax the rich, give to the poor, solve poverty by transferring wealth (as if it was that simple), as if money is the solution to all societies problems.

    Simplistic stuff, that received a simple answer.

  5. Kim’s brand was poison with the MSM before he even entered the arrangement with Harre and Hone. I said to friends supporting IMP that it was a really bad move, but they would have none of it. Russel is right in his assessment. It was always obvious that it was a terrible call. A tiny bit of the German’s vast wealth spent on polling NZer’s perception of him would have made this clear to even the most wide-eyed optimists. Yes the MSM was complicit in parroting the right’s PR lines about him, but that was to be expected given their hostility toward him to start with. Russel is also right in saying that the Greens’ brand was poisoned by their unwanted association with dotcom via likely post-election agreements. He is right to be angry about it – IMP sold out the left’s collective branding to support one rich German’s personal crusade against Key. That is very hard to forgive.

    • Internet MANA started at 4% with Colmar Brunton Poll – if NZ First/Labour/Maori Party & Nats hadn’t co-conspired to lock Hone out of TTT they would have representation in Parliament right now. Giving Russel free reign to slag Hone, Laila and Kim off is fine, but to turn a blind eye to the Greens own appalling marketing plan as excuses to why they didn’t perform this election is pretty shallow.

      • Was it the campaign? Or were it that the policies weren’t bold enough.

        InternetMana offered free tertiary education. The Greens could attack them all they want, but if they wanted to throw them under the bus, at least absorb the voters by giving them some policies they want.

        The Greens offered free public transport for students…
        …in off-peak times.

        That was their only solid commitment. What about reinstating postgraduate allowances? Instead of giving businesses tax credits, why not pump the money into environmentally-friendly courses and programs at universities?

        The Greens need to dare to be bold. I know they make their policies based on a participatory democracy process. So if this is what the membership want, we can’t blame the leaders. But now is the time to think. Now is the time to question the direction the party wants to head towards. I don’t buy into personality politics; I think it’s all about the concrete policies that will make people come out and vote, and engaging them with the issues one conversation at a time. Russel and Metiria are not the issue, nor is David Cunliffe. Some decisions made this year were downright stupid, but the fact is that you can’t afford to make stupid mistakes if you don’t back it up with concrete policies.

        Let’s think about genuine alternatives. Maybe this is what the voters told us in this election. Note, the thinking part is necessary before we commit to anything!

      • Martyn, absolutely right, I have pointed out several times before that the IMP slide began only when it was clear that Labour wouldn’t work with IMP, and the Greens were also lukewarm. If a voter wanted to cast a non-National vote, but wouldn’t vote either Labour or Greens – and there are many in that category – once the IMP vote looked wasted, their only remaining option was NZ First. Those who claim that IMP was a ‘bad idea’ from the outset need to explain why the IMP road show played to packed houses every where. I attended a Labour public meeting in the height of the election in Dunedin, with Phil Twyford as the ‘draw’ and it hardly got a quorum.
        But this is all a distraction. Greens berate IMP, IMP, with good reason, blame Labour. How does this help 2017? IMP had some good policies, which I was prepared to party vote for. I was also attracted to the ability of its members to create policy by direct Internet discussion.
        I haven’t found a reason to vote for any Labour party in 30 years. I am sure that I am not alone. This means that, should the IMP be allowed to fade into oblivion, all we are left with are two Parties that dont really trust each other, have little member participation, and will never get more than 40% between them.
        There is a need either for IMP to be saved or to back a Party with similar policies to IMP. The only Party I know of that has such policies is the Democrats for Social Credit (check out the web-site). Unfortunately their Party vote hardly registers.
        Failing that, it seems to me that there a
        1) a complete realignment of Left wing supporters including (and I will keep on saying it) the Left quitting the Labour Party, and
        2) State support for all registered parties on a per capita basis of votes cast. Without such changes I dont see, in the foreseeable future, how the Left, in its present state of disarray can take on a National Party bankrolled by big business.

    • Phil – at least one poll gave more credibility to Kim Dotcom than John Key; http://www.radiolive.co.nz/Do-you-believe-John-Key-or-Kim-Dotcom/tabid/721/articleID/36969/Default.aspx

      As for the rest? Well, hindsight is always 20/20. But one thing I do know is that Kiwis don’t like “foreigners” telling us home-truths. Even when they are right and we are wrong.

      Our cringeworthy inferiority complex is usually summed up with the stock-standard #1 question we ask visiting foreigners;

      “So, wadaya think of New Zealand?”

      People can demonise KDC to the sheep come home. But we now know more about our surveillance state than we ever knew before. Some cherished illusions about our “paradise nation” have been smashed to smithereens.

      Thanks to KDC.

      What we do with that information is now in our hands.

      Horse. Water. Drink/not drink.

      • the msm had a lot to do with turning people off Dotcom…for that esopecially thank people like Sean Punkett and Paul the Pommy

        • When I saw the shocking interview between Nicky Hager and Mike Hosking, that told me where the media was going with the whole IMP/KDC narrative!! We never had a chance!

      • Basically gutless little insular blinkered twerps that have never known what its like for their country to have been invaded…..being small and far away from theatres of war etc…which in turn breeds a complacent , naive ,,,and frankly – downright bloody lazy arse dangerous acceptance and compliance to whatever arsewipe in power tells em is the truth.

        Another word for Kiwis is ‘Sitting Ducks’.

  6. Please take the blinkers off. Rich, egocentric foreign guy with criminal history buys influence in values-based left wing party in order to pursue personal vendetta against NZ’s most popular PM ever. What part of this doesn’t look like a PR disaster waiting to happen?

    Ok, so the Green’s campaign was bland and uninspiring, but since when has Key’s National been anything but exactly that? NZ likes bland and predictable, and that’s the brand that the Greens should be going for.

    • Phil, if you want to buy into the msm spin re KDC, that’s fine. If you want to ignore the truths of Dirty Politics, that’s fine. If you want to ignore the truth of mass surveillance lies by Key, that’s fine too. But to ignore all that to push an apologist position for Russel’s spite rant against Laila, Hone and KDC without any real critique of the Greens appalling final result beyond that’s what the Greens should be aspiring to is again, pretty shallow.

    • Green parties are never going to credibly compete for the large % of people who have always voted and always will vote National, so they must attract the new voter, the left and centre. They didn’t attract the million or so people who didn’t vote, and the left who voted for IMP are a now a sad wasted irrelevance – just as predicted. Flavell is giving Green voters a lesson – something that Russel has tried to do – if you’re not in Gummint then you’re irrelevant. I can’t believe the stupidity of some of the Green supporter commentary when he suggested that. So what happened to the swag of lost Labour voters? They didn’t vote because they’re disillusioned about Labour leadership, and if those dickheads in Labour can’t pick a decent leader shortly then they will become as relevant as IMP. Green needs to distance themselves from other parties and attract first-time and lapsed voters. As for Green leadership change – if you can’t pick a star then don’t bother changing leadership or you’ll be destined to follow Labour’s sad path.

  7. I didn’t agree with Russell’s comments about the IMP but I also don’t agree that having a Russell v Bomber internet slag-off is going to be helpful either.

    I’m just a random commenter so this will probably go unheard but the reason the left didn’t succeed this election was because of dirty politics. Nicky Hager told us dirty politics works to the advantage of the right and then it happened. It’s not Kim Dotcom’s fault, It’s not Laila Harre’s fault and Hone didn’t make a mistake. If anything that fact that a whole lot of people colluded to get rid of Hone show’s he was on to something.

    That doesn’t mean the left can’t critique itself but can it pleeeeeease be done in a respectful way? If you want to have a raging argument with each other, get a room.

    What everyone on the left should be doing, every time they’re in the media is to remind people about Dirty politics: “Hey, Nicky Hager said it would happen and it did, we can certainly improve a bit on our campaigning but we shouldn’t be surprised that a campaign full of appalling revelations turned people off from voting.”

    Then they should add “My aim over the next three years is to build a coalition of parties that don’t indulge in dirty politics but who are instead focused on the needs of New Zealanders”

    Bottom line: the left is not to blame for the loss (well except for Labour 🙂

  8. NZ is facing the same existential crisis that it faced in the early 1930s as the world capitalist market tanks.

    We need a socialist labour party on the left that drags the political spectrum back to where it was in the 30’s when the First Labour Government intervened to use the state to plan and finance NZ’s economic and social development.

    Our options are to have our wealth sucked dry by international finance capital, or to put up barriers to finance capital by nationalising the strategic parts of the economy we need to survive.

    To do that requires a committed socialist party that fights for what is necessary for the working majority rather than Centre left parties constantly turning their backs on workers to sell themselves to the middle class.

    The middle class is being squeezed and has no future with declining capitalism. Much of it is doomed to sink back into low wage work with the rest of us.

    So the sooner it stops blaming the underclass for its fate rather the 1% that is destroying the planet the better.

    A Socialist Labour Party with a comprehensive program to restore NZs economic and social sovereignty will win over middle class people as crony capitalism excludes them from ever joining the 1%.

    If the left does not drag the centre into its orbit then the right will continue to use the centre to divide and smash the left.

    • The existing centre doesn’t want the Left – refer to Election results and fall out. The Left, currently ruled by middle-class (and wannabe middle-class) nitwits, will abandon anything to move to the centre. You say the centre cannot be maintained, yet then you say that centre (that cannot be maintained) must be drawn into the Left? I think I’m about to suffer a brain meltdown.

      Here’s what’s easier: Allow the middle class to go to their doom squealing about the underclass not running their exclusive elite corporates and government departments competently, and forcing Right-thinking Level-headed good clean voters of Everywhere to vote for parties that want the middle to disappear.

      The middle cannot stand under socialism, and it can’t stand under whatever aberation of capitalism it is that we have now. Even the middle knows it, which is why the scrabbling and scratching and insanity winds up a notch every few years. No one wants to be the guy that didn’t get a seat when the music stopped after playing for so long.

      Soon there will be no support or social currency in the underclass, and therefore no basis for claims that the underclass are costing anyone anything, yet they will still be demonised as what could only be defined as “The most influencial and destructive people on Earth”. The Pacific family of six living out of a van, capable of mind control over the good white folks of Epsom and their employers and the government… yeah, how does that work again? How is it all their evil intent?

      If NZ politics should stop listening to any particular group, I’d say it should stop listening to the middle classes and their insane crawling aspirant tag-alongs who are demonstratably the most powerfully destructive group on Earth.

      • Lee did your brain meltown make you miss this bit?

        “The middle class is being squeezed and has no future with declining capitalism. Much of it is doomed to sink back into low wage work with the rest of us.”

        That means that objectively speaking declining capitalism will de-class the bulk of the middle class into the working class to experience the same levels of destitution as low paid workers and the ‘underclass’.

        But subjectively atomised as individuals they are prey to becoming a lumpen mass of fascist fodder. That mass already exists as an authoritarian base for the NACTs “Bonapartist” proto-fascist regime.

        This concept is explained here:
        http://redrave.blogspot.co.nz/2014/09/capitalism-lives-by-dirty-politics.html

        The middle class has no independent class interest. It gravitates to Capital or Labour depending on whichever is stronger.

        So unless the working class is mobilised by a socialist party and a program for socialism, as the crisis worsens large elements of that de-classed middle class will be counter-mobilised as fascist shock troops to smash a weak working class.

  9. The so called left parties were all peddling some form of austerity.The parties of the left had no plan for the future.We face an ecological disaster which no politician in N.Z. is willing to articulate.N.Z.er’s prefer their myths to any kind of hard reality.As for the middle class they are an aberration .They have only came about from the socialist program of the first labour govt.They like the rest of us have a debt problem and can only go backwards.Until we rid ourselves of corporate fascism ,we will face a existential threat to our very existence.The irony will be we won’t see it coming!

    • Think you will find IMP actually DID have many policies…particularly regards healing many issues with the working poor /unemployed …and…as a result….a protection of wage rates for the ‘middle’….

      But the REAL issue here is not just policy…its economic ideology – policy springs from what economic ideology you have as your base.

      We have been sold the neo liberal lie – the trickle down effect – and THIS is the all pervasive , all permeating cancer that is at the ROOT of so many social evils in NZ today . THIS , – MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE….is the reason for the progressive destruction of first the working poor, then the declining standards of living of the middle classes.

      And the only cure is a return to a Keynesian -based economic model. It is not for a no good reason that on either side of the Keynesian era it was flanked by the colossal failures of neo liberalism – first – with the Great Depression of the 1930’s…..then once again in the failure of 2007.

      Until that fact is addressed….there will BE NO CHANGE.

      All you will get is tinkering round the edges and ongoing economic decline.

      Guaranteed.

      • You are right wild katipo, we are fast becoming a copy of the 1930s,poverty low wages if any jobs were available
        Assistance only given with sneers and grudges by the well off,and only after the poor sold everything they owned to get minimal help , it was called going on the parish ,people used to say they would hate to be on the parish,people were treated like scum.
        The unions were what changed things,they made sure people got paid decent wages. My father told me ,that the rich mine owners,paid pittance wages, and if the price of coal went down ,the owners didnt take the hit in profits, they lowered the wages of miners to recoup, people half starved.
        The war brought about change. my father always claimed the warmongers created wars to profit themselves,so we are on the same slippery slope again,it was a Tory government then , its a National government now , both parties for the wealthy.
        The Unions in most cases now are demonised,we should welcome them back .They certainly changed things for the better in UK.

  10. “YOU NEVER CHANGE THINGS BY FIGHTING AGAINST THE EXISTING REALITY. TO CHANGE SOMETHING, BUILD A NEW MODEL THAT MAKES THE EXISTING SYSTEM OBSOLETE”

    This quote makes a lot of sense. Follow the inspiration of global grass roots Transition Movement – just do it.

  11. I’m not sure this was a good time to be taking aim at IMP AND Kim Dotcom has done a lot of good for NZ in exposing mass survelliance AND I think there is definitely a place for IMP in the political landscape as political parties are social animals. Not everyone with a Left point of view wants to be with the Green Party.

    However, I do agree with what Russel says here:

    “In my opinion, the lesson of IM is that there is no shortcut to progressive social change. We need to build progressive political organisations with democratic processes, grassroots, expert advisors, dispersed financial bases, experienced and deep leadership teams…And we need to do the painstaking process of winning people to our ideas. This last part is critical and takes time. “

    • I’m going to keep saying this. This election was so unusual and the numbers for minor parties were jumping around so much that I think we should be cautious about making bold statements explaining why (for instance) IMP failed to get a seat.

      If you went over to the Internet Party website and browsed the policy discussions you would have seen true democracy in action. If you’d gone to the IMP rallies, you would have seen grass roots politics in action. IMP wasn’t taking shortcuts.

      The MoT thing caused IMP problems, or to be precise, the way the National Party handled it caused them problems. The Nats had months to prepare a strategy and probably had seen a copy of the email well beforehand. That email was released via an OIA request to the Herald a matter of hours before the MoT (yet I haven’t seen anyone question this remarkable coincidence).

      The Herald had enough time to get a quote from Hollywood calling it a fake and at 5 in the afternoon, just 2 hours before the MoT the Herald online had the headline “Dotcom email ‘a fake'”. I had a physiological reaction when I saw it, it was such an Orwellian moment. I didn’t see the TV news but the media in general just kept repeating the ‘fake’ line and that was it, they had set the narrative for the next week and at the end of that week we had the election. Game Over.

      I have a lot of respect for Russell Norman but everyone on the left* needs to take a deep breath, accept that the Dirty Politics won and just make nice with each other.

      *OK, so the entire Labour Party needs an overhaul but y’know, the rest of us should chill a bit.

      • Indeed….chill….and not be so nitpicking …as I said…and as you have said AAron…..

        It is time to get over it and focus on unification of common area’s of ideology…

        And as the Polish people’s slogan….in a figurative way…..

        SOLIDARNOS’C’.

  12. Ah … I just listened to the interview via the link above between Willy and Russell . So , how was Russell being so ill spirited , ranty and spiteful again ? He seemed very much in control , was patient with silly Willy doing his best to push a better and more agile mind into the toothless bear trap that is Willy’s wit and when pressured , he , Norman , performed with the characteristic agility that motivated this writer to vote for him and his policies . I’m disturbed that I’m so disturbed by this actually .
    And Russell was correct in what he said about Kim Dotcom and the Mana party . They did diffuse attention away from that which was most critical and that was to oust jonky-stien and his evil hoards . You know that Martyn . So why the aggressive attack on Russell Norman ? Your reaction is disproportionate to the way Norman recounted his version of events in that interview and in other aspects of the election in my view ? Why is that ?
    Russell Norman’s personality is that of a blunt , to the point kind of person who doesn’t suffer fools gladly . I respect that . At least he didn’t wheedle out an apology for being a man , lie in the grass in a cheap suit , lie full stop , get caught , lie his way out of getting caught , has memory failure , went in lying , become German , got fat , grew to 7 foot tall , stole the creative energy of others to make millions , was a bad , bad boy who got his fingers slapped with an FBI ruler then involve an entire country in his own personal hissy fit of revenge . Russell Norman only wants a cleaner country for future generations . Is there something I’m missing here ???

    If one were to be true to that old saying ; ” Let your conscience be your guide ” then in all conscience , we should have all voted Green . It’s that simple .

    • Yes absolutely, Bradbury is making a mountain out of a molehill, I also listened, I thought Russel was annoyed but certainly not bitter. I thought he handled it well, and at no point did he dump on Harawera. He said Intermana was the problem, Dotcom and Laila were the problem, of course the election result has way more factors in it than this.

      Actually Martyn I thought their branding – billboards was fine. I thought some of IM was off the planet.

  13. I never quite got why many Green Party supporters were so enamored with a leader who spent the first THIRTY years of his life as an Australian, but for some reason find the German (also) NZ resident super scary. Does Norman still hold an Australian passport? And does it matter?
    Personally, I never much liked Norman, but for entirely different reasons. His QE policy frankly scared the bejesus out of me. His advocacy of an ETS even more so. Both are neoliberal solutions to duct tape over the gaping wounds caused by neoliberalism.

  14. Perhaps it is time for everyone to stop blaming everyone else. Perhaps it is time to take an objective look at what went wrong, what can be done better and plan for 2017. There is no surer way of failing again than by continuing the name calling and the in fighting. Hone’s dignified exit should be an example to all.

    • Maybe “we was robbed”im still of the opinion the vote was tampered with , maybe time will tell,but if its proved it was , the blame game wont help a party of the left, too much infighting . So much talent in the left parties but they let John Key influence things, he slagged off the left well in advance, until what he said became a reality in peoples minds, the American style electioneering from the start.

  15. It think it’s time you stopped slagging off the Green Party. They are an electable force to be reckoned with. If you think they are turning centrist I suggest you start reading the policies on their website. Stop eating sour grapes. Although I generally agree with most IM policy to some extent, and it’s disappointing Davis et al. screwed Hone, but honestly, I think Russell is right. Get behind the existing party that is doing the most and has the best support for social justice and environmental issues. It’s little wonder that Russell went to Dotcom’s mansion to plead him not to soak up the votes that would actually be useful in changing the government. The Green Party would have kept Labour in check because of its sizeable leverage.

    • He’s not slagging off the Green Party, he’s criticising Russel Norman’s ridiculous attack on the Internet Mana party, and criticising the Green’s election strategy.

  16. Agree totally with you Martyn, re the Greens. They are now falling into the same trap as Labour. Trying to be too many things to too many people. Believing in the MYTH of so-called “Middle New Zealand”, and trying desperately to curry favour with that MYTHICAL creature, that has already sold its soul to JK, orWinnie, or Colin anyway.

    THAT is a totally FUTILE option to follow, for Labour and for the Greens. Helen Clark managed it, but that was in special circumstances, and even then she only remained in power for more than one term by resorting to shameless bribery. If either Russel, or the “ABCers” in Labour, think they can “do a Helen” a second time around, they are FOOLS, and the 2014 election result clearly spelled out that message, but…. were they listening? On present evidence, they were NOT.

  17. It’s up to the Greens’ themselves who runs their party but, FWIW, I reckon Metiria’s a better bet on her own. Norman cost the Greens votes with his mad musings about morphing with the Nats and his egotistical insistence on being Finance Minister in a Labour-led government.

  18. Norman was a card carrying communist in Australia, who thought democracy was for fools, today he’s a colour blind mp, and thinks red is now green an still pedaling the same dogma from his youth.

  19. Hi,

    Ignoring what RN may or may not have said, we should all look at what the results of the special votes tell us. And what they tell us is about the timeline.

    Look special votes are often enough cast in advance of the elections for people who will be either out of their electorate on voting day or otherwise unable to vote. Which means they reflect the will of the people before voting day. And what we do know about the greens was that they were polling up until the moment of stupid at around 13% to 14%. (As the special votes tell us.) After that their vote collapsed. Labour – though they had a couple of shocker polls at 22% were mostly polling at around 27%. After the moment of stupid they hit 25% on election day. And National were polling at around 46%. After the moment of stupid they polled at 48%.

    The conclusion is obvious. KDC’s moment of stupid was a shotgun blast in the face of the entire left. And in the end it’s simply because the entire election had been railroaded. It wasn’t an election about policies. Not even about people. It was for far too many people about only one issue – was John Key a liar?

    KDC swung and missed spectacularly. His email was branded a fake. He refused to defend it. The press called him a faker and he threw a wobbly. And the rest was history.

    John Key became an innocent man beset by liars. And the entire right mobilised behind him while the left stayed home.

    Worse the very real concerns about spying etc, suddenly got shunted to one side. No one cared when John Key was proven a saint.

    There’s not much point in blaming anyone else. I’m sorry for those who believed in Mana or IMP. But in the end this entire fiasco can be laid at KDC’s feet – and to a certain extent Hager’s who set the stage for the entire John Key and the rest of the National Party is a liar theme.

    Cheers, Greg.

    • Far too simplistic Greg, KDC was not the only person in the election. As for it being Hager’s fault that is astounding. I am pleased he exposed it all when he did.

    • Interesting theory Greg. However, the MoT was what, 6 days before the election? Do you have a breakdown of voting patterns by day, or even by week?

      Also, I think it was mid week that the whole GP might go with National thing happened. That makes more sense as collapsing the Green vote than the MoT which they had nothing to do with. Plus people were worried about Labour not having enough to form govt with.

  20. Hi,

    No I’m not saying Nicky lied. I am saying that Dirty Politics reframed the entire election.

    Look people are all mixed up in the reasons why they vote. Some vote for particular policies. Some vote for parties. And some vote for people. And when I say people I mean most commonly the leader of the party – because he or she is the one whose face they see on the idiot box. So now lets assume that’s split evenly and one in three vote for the leader. (Purely a guess).

    That means that one third of votes are based on whether people liked John Key, David Cunliff or Russel Norman etc. Now one of the other things we know is that one in four unfortunately, don’t vote. That means that of those 33% voting for people, a quarter, or roughly 8%, don’t get off their butts and vote.

    Dirty politics hit this 8% right where it hurt. These 8% who wouldn’t get off their bum and vote for JK, DC, RN, WP etc, got an entire election aimed straight at them. The entire election became is JK a sinner or a saint? Is he a liar? Or is he beset by liars?

    Now these may seem like small numbers, but they’re actually not. If we assume that the rest of the electorate voted as they normally do – for particular policies or particular parties – which is unfortunately a reasonable guess (people tend not to swing that much and the overall numbers stay the same) 8% is an election.

    So KDC does his moment of stupid. Say half of these 8% lean to the right, that’s a potential 4% boost to National when these people are mobilised by the outrageous, scurrulous attacks on saint JK. Meanwhile the 4% that lean left and don’t vote are not only not encouraged in the least to vote, their numbers are joined, because people on the left are dispirited. How can they vote for Labour, DC, or higher taxes, when these things are all associated with KDC who has been publically branded a faker who has attacked a good man?

    So what’s the result? National gets an instant 2% boost – their own politico’s said this on telly the next day. Labour, Maori the Greens and IMP get smashed 2% more or less each. And NZF gets a boost because a lot of the left leaners who would normally vote for one of the other parties, suddenly can’t, but they also can’t quite force themselves to vote National. NZF becomes a protest vote and slips over the 5% threshold.

    That’s my analysis of what happened. And as I’ve said previously the way to prove it is to poll the non voters. They will in huge part be left leaning at a guess. And the special votes mentioned show the timeline which adds to the picture.

    Now as to Nicky – did he lie? No. I might be cynical and suggest that he released Dirty Politics at the best possible time to sell copies, but I don’t think he lied at all. In fact Isuspect he had an agenda to unseat the government as well. It just backfired. His book attacked the credibility of the most popular man in politics and reframed the entire election from a focus on policies and parties to people.

    The moment KDC swung and missed, with the entire election already reframed in terms of people rather than anything else, the election was lost by the left.

    And don’t forget, National’s spin doctors played this. They understood what was happening while no one else seemed to. How many times did you hear on the nightly news that this was all a smear campaign by the left? Every night, every hour of the day practically. National were clever. They understood that this entire election would come down to that one issue, and they gambled that JK would win and KDC would lose. (And personally I wonder if any gambling at all was actually involved. I guess we’ll see if sooner or later KDC by some unexpected turn of events can no longer be extradited.)

    Meanwhile Labour, the Greens, Maori all played into it. They needed to distance themselves hugely from both Dirty Politics and KDC. Instead they didn’t. They allowed themselves to be painted with the same brush of KDC – JK is a sinner. And when that fell, they fell.

    And for the ultimate smack down. Snowden et al were also knocked for six. On their own they could have carried the day. These are respected journalists, not politicians. But everything they said became tainted with the KDC moment of stupid. You heard that night after night as well as the reporters constantly mixed what they said up with KDC’s email and his moment of stupid.

    And Michal, I’m not saying that Hager is responsible. Only that National was far smarter and were able to use what he attacked them with. Think judo. Hager turned the election into one about JK. So they played their strongest cards – JK’s apparent easy going sincerity and KDC’s ability to stuff up and look like an angry liar.

    Cheers, Greg.

    • And don’t forget, National’s spin doctors played this. They understood what was happening while no one else seemed to. How many times did you hear on the nightly news that this was all a smear campaign by the left? Every night, every hour of the day practically. National were clever. They understood that this entire election would come down to that one issue, and they gambled that JK would win and KDC would lose.

      Indeed, and it appeared that a fractured left didn’t know how to respond let alone coordinate a response. Certainly, the campaign and issues were framed by transNational.

      • Hi,

        Absolutely. The question that plagues me is how did National know to take the gamble that JK would win? Because when you think about it, they bet the house on it. If JK had lost, been proven a liar, National would be somewhere about where Labour is now.

        So did they know in advance? Because I don’t see them as gamblers.

        And then there’s the whole Colin Craig’s press secretary thing. The timing is simply so perfect it leaves me gasping. How lucky can one party be?

        As Mao said, politics is war without the bloodshed. And spies and sabotage have long been weapons of war.

        Cheers, Greg.

  21. It’s a bit rich for Internet Mana supporters to criticize Green Party supporters. What about their “vote for hoverboards” campaign. I knew that was one of the stupidest things i’ve ever seen, obviously dreamed up by that cheesy fellow known as Kim Dot Com.

    How can a guy that abuses his own staff be funding a so called “workers rights” party. Oh but it was all just a bit “smear campaign” honestly internet mana need to stop being such sore losers and play it cleaner next time, with better more realistic polices. For instance, the government has already bailed out chorus to the tune of what 30 million? But Kim Dot Com wanted “faster internet for all” how was he going to achieve that? by pouring more tax payer money into huge failing corporates?

  22. ^ Oh Brother….I give up….

    Some folks just dont wanna see the universe….they just want to keep looking into their deep dark hole so they cant see a thing….

  23. Bugger the Greens, Labour, NZ First , their sheer arrogance and finger pointing after the election has left me disheartened and pissed off with the lot of them, I like Cunnlife but cant stand the rest of his divided half assed wannabee Tory’s in red jacket caucus, I like Winston but find half of his party scary, I like Russell Norman, but cant stand Metiria and how up her self and arrogant she is. All five parties including Internet & MANA need to get their shit together and mount a coalition of all parties for 2017 otherwise I’m afraid its just going to end in disaster like it did this time round.
    Bring back the Alliance party, last decent party that ever existed in this country.

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