The real reason Simon Bridges isn’t connecting with National Voters

By   /   June 10, 2018  /   9 Comments

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Simon Bridges either embarks upon an internal cultural reformation of civility and generates policy that challenges party status quo and aims to pull a middle class who will be dizzy from petrol price cost increases, mortgage hikes and a public service that isn’t helping over to a milder less angry National Party or he just waits until Judith slides her knife into his back to the cheering of National Party members.

The fat grey tout jumped over the slippery blue fox.

I’ve had the opportunity to interact with Simon Bridges in the past. More so than any other National Party leader.

He’s actually a very interesting and charismatic chap face to face. He is far more pragmatic than his socially conservative public persona and far less dogmatic than he’s desperately trying to paint himself.

Don’t get me wrong, he’s ruthless as well. Chris Trotter captured his services towards the corporate rule of NZ perfectly with this excellent blog

That Bridges was willing, coolly and efficiently, to curtail New Zealanders’ protest rights, would not have gone unnoticed by his political patrons (among whom were John Key and Steven Joyce). They had set him a test – and he had passed it with flying colours. In order for Bridges to become a successful statesman, his political peers needed to be convinced he had it in him to put his most cherished ideals to the sword without flinching.

…he’s done enough social damage to prove he can be leader of the National Party. I’m not suggesting he wouldn’t break children’s hands for political gain, but he wouldn’t chop them off.

The problem is however, that while he is ruthless and clings awkwardly to the dead old mantras mouthed by the TalkbackRight…

…and ended up sounding 18th Century on Abortion rights, he’s a better person than what the National Party base are foaming for.

The reason Simon Bridges is not succeeding as National leader is because he’s actually not as spiteful and nasty as the party electorate want him to be!

I’ve blogged a bit about the culture inside the National Party recently because it fascinates me and I think the Left need to get outside their immediate social media bubble to appreciate how toxic the Right are becoming.

The fury with which many still feel at being ‘cheated’ is real. The rage that everything they culturally feel intimated by is suddenly calling the shots gives genuine insight into the fragility a nation of neoliberal individuals creates.

Watching the Northcote by-election was instructive with National Party supporters screaming ‘Communist’, and ‘Go home to Russia’, at the Labour candidate.

In a world with Netflix, can you imagine the effort required to go to a bloody by-election debate mid week to scream juvenile abuse? It takes an enormous amount of bitterness to do that.

And that’s what National are now, a Party supported by bitter individuals who want leaders who strike with the same spiteful resentment they want to strike with.

Simon is touring the country trying to get to know National voters.

I think he’s wasting his time.

They know him and he’s not mean enough to fulfil their cravings for vengeance.

Simon Bridges either embarks upon an internal cultural reformation of civility and generates policy that challenges party status quo and aims to pull a middle class who will be dizzy from petrol price cost increases, mortgage hikes and a public service that isn’t helping over to a milder less angry National Party or he just waits until Judith slides her knife into his back to the cheering of National Party members.

Simon has inherited a throne that his support base want to see butcher their enemies, he either becomes that monster for their continued support or he leads them in a different direction, all the while with Judith waiting like a brain hungry zombie in a nursery.

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9 Comments

  1. Marc says:

    Bridges or no Bridges, burned Bridges, or no burned Bridges:

    Conclusion:

    The actual True Blue Right, i.e. harder core, want a HARD line, which only Judith Collins will deliver, but her wider appeal is limited, she is also not that much liked by many in caucus.

    Once she puts the dagger in, and Bridges has to step down from his leadership role, the HARD right will rule again.

    That may appeal to some property owning, business operating and culturally ‘conservative’ folks, it will turn many liberal minded urban voters off, including those who used to vote Labour under Helen, then deserted her in 2008.

    With present Labour being more talk about ‘change’, they are simply nothing more or less than a moderator of the neoliberal state of affairs, and will kowtow to business, including famers walking a tight rope balance, as usual. There will be some kinder gestures to the poor, perhaps a few tiny lollies to beneficiaries, but for the most, they will manage the country aith the likes of a John Key Light diet of policy.

    Jacinda appeals, goes on the social soft skill side of things, and people voter for her, not so much for policy, more for personality as they did with Key.

    Hence the more liberal Nat voters of 2008 to 2014 come back to Labour and ensure Labour carries into a second term, ensuring being in government, but doing only very little of what they campaigned on prior to the election in 2017.

    That is also why they have all these ‘expert’ consultation groups. Some consultation is always needed, but what we will get is a delay tactic, to have reports tell the government, to do only little in the way of changes, so to not upset the system that is in place all too much.

    Can we be happy? Nope, I am not, it is a shallow mellow crap business to me, and appealing to the urban liberal consumerists, combustion engine motorists, and wasters and life-stylers, all wanting to carry on as usual will spell disaster for this country in the medium to longer term.

  2. cleangreen says:

    Simon Bridghes; “he’s done enough social damage to prove he can be leader of the National Party.”

    Yes he certainly qualifies for that prized position of being another ‘national carpetbagger’ – alright he is.

  3. WILD KATIPO says:

    Neither Bridges or Collins have the natural cunning and aggressiveness of a Rob Muldoon, nor the smarmyness of a John Key.

    They will be out in the wilderness for their term of 40 years.

    Thank goodness.

    • Wensleydale says:

      Judith Collins is the iron fist in the irradiated titanium war gauntlet. There is nothing soft, compassionate, sympathetic or warm about Judith. She’s concentrated venom with a dash of hydrochloric acid for good measure. If National want someone who will gleefully trample the broken bodies of the coalition into the mud, cackling like a demented harpy all the while, then they can’t go past Judith. She’s about as approachable as a flaming cactus, but she’s clever and ruthless.

      On a positive note, she’ll probably reduce what’s left of National’s reputation to ash and dust into the bargain.

  4. Aaron says:

    But seriously, do over 50% of the country feel like this?

  5. Castro says:

    It’s a bit hypocritical of Natzis to scream commie when they have put a spy from the largest communist dictatorship on the planet in “our” parliament. The contradictions afre coming thick and fast

  6. Mike the Lefty says:

    Yep, I reckon Simon Bridges won’t be leading National at the next general election. Judith Collins will have plunged the knife into his back well before then.

  7. mosa says:

    Caucus support or not it won’t matter if National think Collins can get them back in to government.

    It does not make a blind bit of difference who leads this nasty party because it has a rock solid constituency that was mobilised for the last thirteen years led first by Brash and his ruthless tactics.

    It is enduring support that has not wavered and when a new right of centre grouping forms it may be back in government in two years if Labour can’t grow its vote and think about life after Winston.