David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is wrong within Labour



Mr Nasty pays a visit

Shearer’s extraordinary outburst last night on NZs favourite redneck TV, The Paul Henry Show, is a reminder of all that is wrong within the Labour Caucus right now…

He said the current calls for a female or Maori deputy leader to balance out the white, middle-aged men running as leader was one sign of that obsession. “People are saying we’ll have a white bloke for a leader so we need a woman or Maori as deputy. No. We need the most competent person whether that’s woman or a man. That speaks a lot about the party.”

…Shearer may as well have worn a ‘No Feminist Chicks allowed’ T-Shirt and demanded that it was time for the girls to get back into the kitchen and Maori and PI voters learn their place. The belief inside Labour is that they lost contact with the middle Nu Zilind voter and the middle Nu Zilind voter wants boiled meat and three vege politics and all this gender equality crap only serves to make blokes choke on their mince pies down at the sports club.

The activist base, who were begged to stand by the Party over the previous two losses under the pretence that they will have their political concerns included and championed by a more democratic approach to selecting the leader will view these comments with rage and it gives a real idea as to how toxic the Caucus has turned.

No wonder Cunliffe simply walked away from it all.

Watching Shearer twist the knife is a sick joke. Demanding Cunliffe resign altogether from Parliament is the kind of disgraceful kick in the guts Russel Norman indulges in when someone is down. Is Shearer a Labour Party MP or Ben Flower giving the the bash to a player on the ground?

Labour is safe in the knowledge that with the Greens galloping to the centre, their activist base has no where to go, what Shearer is articulating is the end of progressive visionary politics and a return to the low horizon of bloke grunts.

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The mainstream media in NZ won’t allow a Labour leader who can actually change things, they want a pacified Leader who will act as a mere manager. Forget the bias the media showed Labour, forget the weird election, forget the demonisation of Kim Dotcom, it was all apparently being ‘too left wing’ and focused on ‘special interests’.

What is most hilarious about that last part, is that it is National who is the Party of special interests – Sky City special interests, Federated Farmer special interests, Corporation special interests and the interests of the most wealthy. Labour are not focused on ‘special interests’, they are focused on social justice, but the mainstream media will never acknowledge that and rather than challenge that false narrative structure, Shearer is more than happy to play to it.

What the Labour Caucus are asking is their activists support them because they know best and shelve all the left wing middle class pretensions. With the Greens attempting the same political foot work, progressive voters have little else to do but disconnect in disgust or do as they are told.

It is up to the 4* candidates to decide what direction Labour now heads in.


 *Nanaia Mahuta now standing


  1. “No feminist Chicks allowed” t-shirt… with the picture of a meat pie with all the filling spilling out underneath. That would be a good seller, I think. Reminds me of the large guy I saw coming down Queen street wearing a t-shirt that read,”Danger… Coconut approaching!”

    The Labour Party is dead, but not yet buried. They should just make a stuffed toy elephant the leader and then go about business as usual. I’m curious as to how long the members and “administrators” can keep working on something that no longer exists before they realise and go home. There’ll be those big grey metal filing cabinets to list on Trade Me, black and white portraits of old white guys nobody knows the name of anymore… it’s big job. Two months, tops?

    • Has Labour actually done anything since Helen Clark left? I can’t think of anything so maybe another reason no votes? I think they can self obsess for at least another 2 elections without much change, but maybe if that is their strategy they might as well just put stuffed toys in their place from now on, as more effective than rushing around on prime TV bad mouthing their colleagues and party. News flash, your supporters are already fed up!

  2. I didn’t see the Paul Henry show (does anyone out there actually watch him?) but have to say I agree with David Shearer that Labour should not try to get some token person but the most competent. I also think Labour lost touch with middle NZ too – which is why they lost. Personally I think they need to get back to social justice which is the main difference there used to be between National and Labour. National has no social justice but Labour did not campaign on it last election and lost votes. By attacking KDC and Internet Mana they looked bad and have not been active in tackling the growing corruption and attacks on justice and democracy. I want my kids to live in a world with social justice that is real and while Labour trys to sort it self out with tokenism, NZ is becoming a less just place to live under their noses. So I don’t care who is deputy of Labour I just want them doing their job and being the opposition and fighting for what is right, something they have lost touch with in their self obsession for leadership.

    • Most competent person, David Cunliffe.

      Can we please add him back on to the DB poll. He was doing astounding well yesterday.

    • … that Labour should not try to get some token person but the most competent

      I keep hearing that term, “most competant”.

      But no definitions as to what constitutes “competant”.

      Considering that “most competant” is often defined by the ruling hierarchy, and subsequently those selected “on merit” reflect the appearance of those who dominate society and/or the selection process – I’m a little wary of such terms as “competant” or “merit”.

  3. …Shearer may as well have worn a ‘No Feminist Chicks allowed’ T-Shirt and demanded that it was time for the girls to get back into the kitchen and Maori and PI voters learn their place.

    I don’t like him, but that’s not what he said. He’s right that identity politics needs to go – people first and predicates second! Of course that doesn’t say anything about the origins of a suitable Labour leader.

    Right now Labour can’t afford to be picky. They desperately need someone who isn’t a complete numpty.

    Oh heck…

    • There are some incredibly competent women in parliament under the Labour banner. I think getting any one of them onside as part of a leadership team would only strengthen the cause. It clearly works for the greens. But if these women are as smart as I think they are they’ll stand well clear of this sideshow and wait it out another 3 years until Labour might actually be serious about getting into parliament.

      We know that men overestimate their attractiveness and intelligence while women do the opposite. The boy’s club searching for power is an example of gender dynamics playing out in politics. We should have the most qualified leaders but that means recognising that the guy promoting himself might be the loudest, not the best.

        • I’m with Sarah and Kate. Nice Sarah.

          As to Shearer, well it’s always the white, privileged, patriach that’s first to slam affirmative action under the banner of ‘ meritocracy’.

      • Interesting… Sarah made a fairly innocuous – though pertinent point – and it got voted down by at least 19 people. They can’t all be reactionary red-neck jerks with the IQ of a mole-rat… so what gives?

        • It might have been this “We know that men overestimate their attractiveness and intelligence while women do the opposite.” Sweeping generalisation, that, which and doesn’t add much to the debate. However, I agree with the point she is making, that there are women as capable, and more,of leading as any of the men already nominated. And she may very well be correct in that they are waiting a bit until Labour gets serious about what it actually stands for.

          • There have been studies which show men have higher self esteem and are more assertive.

            I think what Sarah was getting at was men have higher self esteem, they consider themselves more attractive.

            But its a very unpopular thing to say to men. And its a difference ON AVERAGE, not between all men and all women.

      • In the last couple of years there has been two labour leadership races and to date only one woman has put her hand up and run for the leaders job, why? Before the election there were a little under half of labours MPs were woman. If represention is so important they need to get off there butts, the only thing stopping them is the themselves. It’s seems they’d rather whine about sexism instead and distroy the party..

    • You’re right Tom, that’s not what he said. In this difficult time where everyone should be thinking hard and humbly and trying to get honestly to the bottom of what’s wrong and what needs to be done, what’s really ‘left’ and what’s ‘right’, tossed-off jibes like this are just what we don’t need, Mr Bradbury.

    • No. He’s wrong. And labeling it “identity politics” and thereby trying to dismiss it is intellectually lazy.

      Women are not a minority, we are 51% of the population. We’re actually a numerical majority.

      We’ve been saying for a very long time that the men in power are using overt and subtle sexism to try and keep women away from power. They don’t like to share.

      So either you really truly believe that somehow intrinsically it is white males who are the best people for the job, or something else is going on.

      That something else just might be sexism and racism that women and people of colour keep talking about?

      • Ever occur to Shearer that while he courts the lost white male vote he risk losing the support base that is the Labour women voters??? He needs to get into this century and stop the crap..I am disgusted with the guys ignorance.

          • Yes women are a 51% majority, majority wins elections. Therefore they have more of a say in the out come of and shape of the government. They vote for who they want. If they want more women they will vote for them. It’s democracy at work. Because the make up of parlament is not to some peoples likeling dosent mean it’s sexist.. It’s up to the parties and individual politicians to convince us to vote for them, and has nothing to do with the gender.

  4. Feel sorry for David Cunliffe though. David Shearer should keep out of it – if you can’t say something nice don’t say it at all – especially about your collegues. While Labour are arguing on the tax payers dime National is now seeking to destroy education, justice and the environment via the RMA, it’s depressing times. Where are the Greens?

    • I agree, Shearer cam over as bitter and seeking revenge I am sad to say. It’s not his business how Cunliffe deals with his changing direction, this little feud is beneath them both.

  5. It’s astonishing that Shearer has said in public that Cunliffe should leave politics, absolutely astonishing.

    In the end though I think it’s good – which is not to say I agree with him, the comment actually makes me so mad that I want to tell him to leave politics but it will help to force the crisis that will resolve the problems with the labour party. My hope is that Cunliffe sticks around to run interference for Andrew Little, he more than anyone knows the problems these dickheads are causing. They are after all, the people who were happy to lose the election just to deny Labour a vaguely leftwing leader.

    Can I also add that the Labour Party should be able to appeal to the meat and three veg blokes as well as the ‘special’ interest groups. It’s all about social justice after all and the meat and three veg blokes are being shafted just as much as everyone else out there.

  6. The thing that worried me about Shearer’s comments (I heard them on Radio NZ National this morning) was he demand that Labour change its policies to compete for the imagined central block of voters. A progressive party would be setting policy based on ideology and then attempting to lead. Shearers approach smacks of the worse of neo classical economics; public choice economics, where all are seen as selfish and having a great ability to focus the future.

    His statement about appealing to those who work hard and want to get on is also a worry. Most people want to get on, and at a time when 7% are unemployed and a further 12% underemployed working more is not a virtue it’s greed. Shearer’s approach is a denial of Labour’s roots in working to lift the common man(/woman)

    • I agree with your ideology in some aspects but politics has to be practical too. Loads of unemployed don’t vote or just vote for whoever their church or All black tweets about on the day. It’s not this even playing field and by saying ‘hey the bottom 18% will automatically vote for whoever is against poverty’ seldom works. Look what happened to Hone. The middle classes are people that actually vote on the day for who ever they feel will improve their lot. That is what the middle NZ who decide elections, the swing voter, and who National and not Labour successfully targeted this election. What do you think of when you think Labour – answer work. What does Labour mean – answer work. What did national have as their slogan – Working for NZ. They took Labour’s brand and are continuing to do so while Labour self destructs by itself from stupidity over leadership that middle NZ actually don’t care about because they are trying to raise their kids, pay their bills and get through their life devoid of an avid interest in politics. If anything, Labour needs authenticity to reconnect and real and practical policies that will improve most peoples life not special interests. So yes it is not fair we should try to improve the lowest income people first, but sorry, to win votes, you need to improve most peoples lives first and then go back to the lowest income people who probably didn’t bother voting in the last election.

  7. Shearer is a dumb middle class aspirant, traits he learned from Tony Blair and cleaning up after imperialist wars.
    The Labour Party is splitting between the ABC (all bloody centrists) parliamentary carpetbaggers, and its core low paid worker base.
    It can’t suppress this class contradiction anymore.
    This bullshit about ‘identity politics’ is shitting on the working class.
    Standing up for Maori, Pasifika, gays, youth blah blah is standing up for those layers of the working class that are under-represented and oppressed by the white, straight, male, boring middle class tools of the dying, destructive capitalist world system.
    Lets see the Labour Party that holds onto the myth of classlessness and post-colonial fantasy die, and in its place a real party of Labour rise like a phoenix!

  8. Labour have to appeal to more voters than they did in the last two elections, if that is not stating the bloody obvious, if they are to change anything. And if that means picking the right person based on their ability rather than their DNA then it makes perfect logical sense to me and majority of New Zealanders. To do otherwise looks and is stupid.

    And for all of Cunliffes martyrdom there is no smoke without fire. Shearer is resolute he was undermined by Cunliffe so everything is not kapai there either. DC should pull the pin and go and I believe you said that as well a couple of weeks back. To quote DC after pulling out of the leadership contest; “I made a difficult decision on a principled basis which is that caucus would be best served by another person at the present time.” If he had said that immediately after the election that would have been spot on and a fair bit of the blood letting may have been avoided. But the obvious only ever seems to occur to DC after the horse has bolted.

    • And if that means picking the right person based on their ability rather than their DNA then it makes perfect logical sense to me and majority of New Zealanders.

      Please let go of the ‘ability vs DNA’ mentality.
      This is not an either/or situation.

  9. What utter twaddle Bradbury. The point that Shearer was no doubt making was that identity politics is a dead-end street. One would hope that whoever becomes leader, gay, straight, union sourced, lawyer, accountant, public servant, whatever, will be sufficiently attuned to the needs of both majority and every minority grouping you may care to put up, to do their job well. The same, let us suppose, a priori, will apply to whoever becomes deputy leader and, by the way to every shadow minister of each and every area of government.
    If any caucus member doesn’t have enough empathy to try to understand the point of view of any number of minorities, then they are in the wrong job, or at least on the wrong side of the aisle.
    Don’t you want the best person for the job in the job? I thought that was what all this was about!

    • What utter twaddle Nick.

      Shearer has been out all day as the attack dog of the ABCs tearing repeatedly on every major media platform in the country that Cunliffe should stand down. He is out there attempting to belittle Cunliffe so that Cunliffe’s support to Little is diminished and he’s doing this purposely to assist whatever faction will give the ABCs positions of influence.

      This entire event has been faction based and the electoral failure has been faction based. Shearer is talking over the heads of Labour supporters and he’s talking to National supporters. It’s that audience he is competing for because the more the right wing report what he says, the more middle nu zilind heads nod and the more influence that will have on Labour members voting in the primary.

      It’s very deliberate and it’s very staged. Now, I certainly believe whatever leader comes out needs to be able to appeal to middle nu zilind while NOT alienating the current base, but Shearer is trying to get the leader elected by the right.

      Screw that.

      • Speaking as a middle New Zealander Martyn I find what you say quite patronizing.

        I am not left or right i am just a person that wants what is best for the country I love something that used to be at the very core of what it was to be a “statesman” not a career politician I dont want to be appealed to because of my social identity but someone who loves this country as much as I do.

        You come off bitter and rather disillusioned I am starting to think all you see is left and right and not people.

        • Not so much bitter as disillusioned that NZers would rally to mass surveillance lies and dirty politics. The ability to play them so successfully was equal to the mass hysteria over the repeal of section 59. I certainly believe the election result makes us a lesser nation.

          Who did you vote for?

        • Plan B –

          I dont want to be appealed to because of my social identity but someone who loves this country as much as I do.

          You can afford to be blase about identity politics if the hierarchy that dominates looks like you.

          Remember that it was only a year ago that gays and lesbians had the same right as heterosexual males and women to marry. One year.

          And there are still elements of society who want to treat LGBT as second class citizens by restricting the right to choose to marry.

          That is just one example.

          When you’re privileged, because of your DNA and subsequent social status, it’s a bit hard to identify with those who don’t look like you.

          Doubt me?

          Look at National’s present leadership cabinet. Of the Top Ten ministerial positions;

          * the top 4 are white, middle-aged men

          * 7 are male

          * 3 are female

          * 1 is Maori (2 if you include Simon Bridges)

          * no Pacifica or Asian

          Source: http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/256236/john-key-reveals-new-cabinet-lineup

          If you’re white, male, and middle-aged, the top four Cabinet ministers look like you. If you’re white, 80% of the top ten ministers look like you.

          Calling this issue “identity politics” is simply political short-hand for dismissing these concerns. Like the oft quoted “political correctness”, which has no real meaning except one of derision.

          It’s no surprise that Labour did well in South Auckland, where that party looks more like those constituents than the National Party which has one Pacifica (Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga) out of 25 ministers.

          Instead of deriding “identity politics” (whatever that means), it should be employed more cleverly so that Labour looks like the people of New Zealand.

    • The point that Shearer was no doubt making was that identity politics is a dead-end street.

      Nick, have you checked your privilege as a white, middle-class male lately?

      Because really, until you’re not a white, middle-class male , and are female or a minority, you have little idea about what you refer to as “identity politics”.

      Heck, you probably don’t even know what the term is. Or what it refers to.

    • He could easily have fought this, he’s stepped aside before the nominations have closed. That said, I certainly believe he should have made is intention to step down immediate on the night and that there would need to be a Labour contest. He should have taken full responsibility for the loss and state that it was only right that there was a leadership contest. His consideration for the mechanics of it all made him look weak and calculating.

      • Yea but the point is that he didn’t. He had no intention to step down, he sent out an email requesting support on the night of the election.

  10. “the Greens galloping to the centre”

    Not sure what this is referring too, as the Green Party hasn’t changed any of its policies from earlier years to cater to the middle classes – some of its policies that got highlighted during the election included decriminalising marijuana, legalising abortion and introducing a capital gains tax. Probably all that is happening is that the Green MPs are now explaining the party’s policies in a less frightening way. But really the Greens still cope an extraordinary lot of bullshit from the mainstream.

  11. Shearer says Labour got hijacked.
    Yes, I agree….by neoliberals like Douglas, Prebble et al in the 1980s.
    It is now time to seize the party back from such traitors and fifth columnists.
    Allow the Labour Party membership decide its course..not a bunch of careerist Labour caucus members.

  12. Shearer should never have gone into politics. He should have kept getting excited about the victims of imperialist wars and the mercenaries who profit from the mess. His whole involvement has been a bloody disaster and now he’s showing that he’s also a nasty, whiny little turd.

  13. There is no reason for feminism in todays western society. Its ok to be proud of female struggle and achievement, but its over. Feminism purely exists today for self righteous women who want something to moan about. The only real issue they have left is wage inequality.

    • Said by the no-name troll.

      Feminism hasn’t even got started, let alone finished. Bring on the fourth wave.

    • “Its ok to be proud of female struggle and achievement” Oh, shucks, kind sir. It was nothing. Anybody could.

      So when do you think the blokes will get off their timid ends and start working for equality?

      Or are one’s place in the blokes’ hierarchy, and wordly status, the true measure of a man, in your opinion?

      Remember that even for a lowly bloke there are women and kids and assorted ‘losers’ to look down on and jeer at.

      Now that’s a status quo that needs rattling, regardless of the ‘ism’ you care to call it. But it would take real men to do it.

  14. “It is up to the 3 candidates to decide what direction Labour now heads in.”
    So which of the 3 is heading Left?

  15. As a Labour member I don’t want to see us back in Govt. if all it means is rehashed Nat/Neo-Lib policies. Would rather stay in opposition, for two more terms if that’s what it takes, to get the opportunity to make real change and effect a progressive view of society.

    Do I know exactly what that should look like or what the buzzwords will be? Of course I don’t – but the themes are certainly getting clearer; obscene levels of inequality, environmental degredation, crony out of control capitalism, eroded personal freedoms & privacy, captive & complicit mainstream media.

    Labour’s opportunity is the 1 million who don’t vote – we need to spend the next 3 years doing the hard graft; door knocking, enrolling, listening, activating. But we need to start on this tomorrow, well maybe after Xmas…

  16. Martyn When I read some of these comments and there ratings it is as if Nats are trying to ruin this site like they do every thing else David Cunliff given the chance could lead Labour to victory as he is more than a match for Mr Key and his cronnies and the media and now his own colleagues are so openly disloyal it is a disgrace Hope Nahaia Mahuta gets the nod now DC HAS PULLED OUT


      Agreed. And the right wing presence has been noticeable for some time now, they seem to have stepped it up more so lately.

  17. I am extremely annoyed with the behaviour of David Shearer in the media and I can say with all certainty, that I am not the only one. David Shearer’s public meltdown (as someone aptly described online) ” resembles that of a bad mannered spiteful little boy throwing a tantrum.” is most certainly undermining the Labour party in these already unsettling times, and he is doing himself and the party no favours.

    And further, David Shearer’s unreasonable and outrageous outbursts and demands in the media to force David Cunliffe out of parliament in a false concern for a new leader, is extremely hypocritical, given that Shearer himself stayed on after he was rolled by Robertson and co, and showed no such concern for the leadership of David Cunliffe, who won the role democratically, fair and square last year.

    Repeating comments in the online communities is worth noting, that the likes of David Shearer are the real cause of Labour’s problems, that David Shearer has exposed how toxic Labour’s caucus really is, and that John key and the media have been vindicated because Shearer has shown Labour are not fit to govern.

    Is this what Labour wants? Where are the Labour values?

    I thought there was a code of conduct for all, set down by the council?

    David Shearer’s continued cringeworthy hissy fit outbursts to the media must surely be a breach of that code and must surely be a breach of Labour own values that the party promotes.
    Not only has David Shearer shown New Zealand over and over how vindictive he is, he has also demonstrated that he does not have a real sense of Labour’s roots, and that either he is in the wrong political party, or that he should follow his own advice, and leave.

  18. Mt. Albert is by no means a right-wing burb. If you take the Labour party vote there as a percentage of the votes for Shearer, (Labour party vote divided by Shearer’s vote) you get 51.6%. That shows how much he campaigned for the “party”. It is only higher than similar percentages in progressively less: Auckland central, 51.3%, and Wellington Central, 46.98%. Guess who.

  19. “David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is wrong within Labour”? It highlights other things as well. The fact he has even said it, or feels he even has to go there, and it is news, confirms absolutely we are still in the infancy stages of our evolution.

    As for Labour “losing contact with the middle Nu Zilind voter, she/he wanting boiled meat and three vege politics and all this gender equality crap only serving to make blokes choke on their mince pies down at the sports club”, you should’ve been in the group at my local sports club talking Labour leadership in the last fortnight.

    Granted it is National country, but the group would’ve been “middle Nu Zilind” voters. The notion of Grant Robertson being chosen was broached. Neanderthal responses.

    Right then and there the fertile ground for the receipt of the media “man ban” chicanery was exposed.

    The issues Shearer talked about are issues which need to be addressed and they need to be come to terms with, because the Key party will be spinning any smidgeon of doubt and wangling every millimetre of mileage out of anything they can discern to seed doubt in the minds of those middle Nu Zilind voters.

    Yet with the gazing so easily diverted to that navel with the venom already shown on here, it seems it could be a while before those with professed Labour ideals consider that while their sport is destroying each other, Key will continue carte blanche his campaign on destroying the country.

  20. David Who? I heard some beltway gossip about two Davids desperately trying to get a new job with the UN, as they see no future in their present jobs.

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