MEDIAWATCH: Vance on the Luxon, Judith + Winston trainwreck news conference

Spot the Prime Minister

Andrea Vance is scathing of Luxon’s weakness…

How the hell has Christopher Luxon got himself into this mess?

Luxon cannot escape from this scrutiny, and he is fool to think he ever could.

Is this a cul-de-sac that his predecessors John Key or Bill English would have blundered into? No, because they had what he lacks: a deftness to navigate complex, intergenerational political problems, or at least the good sense to body-swerve them.

And so we are where we are: wasting time on an idea that is going nowhere, and upsetting, or unsettling, vast swathes of the population.

As a consequence, the prevailing energy of the year’s first press conference was defensive crouch. The main topics on the agenda were the deployment of Defence Force spooks to the Middle East, and the Treaty.

Luxon, Judith Collins and Winston Peters gave the distinct impression of three ministers who knew they were doing something wrong.

On the Houthi strikes, the trio flubbed it. Their explanation should have been simple and non-threatening: our position in the Western Alliance is integral to the security we enjoy in our region, so when they ask for a bit of help on a limited but worthwhile mission that impinges directly on global trade, of course we would say yes. Next question.

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Yet, they descended into obfuscating, technocratic double-speak. There were no straight answers. We know more about Judith Collins’ reading habits (she likes The Economist, in case you cared) than her rationale for the deployment.

The train wreck of a press conference the announcement to join America’s latest war was simply glorious.

Luxon, Winston and Judith utterly out of their depth with no clue whatsoever…

She could barely bring herself to admit the central operational reason for deploying the six personnel. Yes, Judith. They. Will. Be. Assisting. In. The. Bombing. Of. Yemen. That’s the point.

The glowering foreign minister, who looked like he would rather have been at Jacinda Ardern’s wedding than that painful press conference, was strangely unprepared for what seemed like an obvious question: would New Zealand consider recognising Palestine as a country?

As to denying that the military action was related to the Gaza conflict? That was just plain odd.

Left alone at the podium, after Peters and Collins beat a hasty retreat, matters only went downhill for Luxon as he was relentlessly grilled on the Treaty bill.

…all it needed was the Curb Your Enthusiasm theme song.

The right wing apologists for Luxon first claimed he wasn’t a politician so that’s why he was so useless and had to keep u-turning on things he’d said 24 hours earlier.

Then the apologists attempted to sell him as the great deal maker, which looked farcical after ACT and NZ First screwed National over.

Then they tried to pretend he was moderate and not extreme despite:

  • Attacking Worker Rights
  • Attacking Renter Rights
  • Taking $555million form the poorest families
  • Vandalising Public transport
  • Starting a race baiting war on Māori while attempting to legislate away the Treaty.
  • Stopping cameras on fishing fleets.
  • Robbing Climate Change funds and road safety funds for tax cuts to rich people.
  • Allowing 8000 tobacco deaths for tax cuts WHILE GETTING US INTO A COUNTER PRODUCTIVE AMERICAN WAR!!!!

NOW as the shear lie of National not being extremist sinks beneath the surface, it’s Luxon the super strategist chess player Svengali who is playing us all into thinking he’s a weak willed moron when really he is super clever and tricking us.


The right Wing are so in shock at how feckless Luxon is, the apologists are manufacturing him into a Machiavellian mastermind.

The truth is Luxon was a middle manager CEO who ran a mens deodorant company and had the cushy NZ owned Air NZ and has zero political values beyond loving God.

He is being played by David Seymour and Winston Peters.

The Right refuse to accept this and so we get this never ending wardrobe change of a narrative structure trying to explain Luxon to voters.

If there wasn’t so much at stake, it would be sadly funny.



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  1. Yes ..well …if your getting outplayed by that goofy dreamer clown Seymour, whose only there by dint of Epsom rigging the electoral system combined with a bunch of nothing better to do with their money billionaires, and, the old, and not to be ageist, but let’s face it, he’s past any cohesive rational thinking, Peters, then Luxon would have to be rated as N.Z’s worst Prime Minister ever !!..

    That’s no small achievement when you consider the likes of the dreadful Shipley and the shifty conman Key.

    I know people who are dna Nat.voters, and when i ask them what they think of Luxon there is just a shaking of the head and a barely audible..’ oh well..we’ll see’.

    That’s the highest level of enthusiasm they can muster..

    When i suggest to them that the left hand doesn’t seem to know what right hand is doing , there is just silence…

    The whole coalition of clowns are so stupid, so disorganised, so devoid of any meaningful ideas, i can’t see them getting past the two year mark without the whole thing imploding.

    Luxon has zero cultural capital, poor knowledge, and no idea how to preside over a country that is beset with many complex issues.

    He’s a piece of white bread heading for a toaster on maximum setting!

  2. I didn’t see the conference, did they mention the starvation and disease and 30,000 dead people or were they more interested in shipping containers?

    • Only shipping containers and the negative affect it will have on our trade. Total denial as to any link to Israel and Gaza.
      I got the impression Luxon couldn’t be trusted to announce it alone so had to be chaperoned, then the minders made it worse by trying to flannel the fact we are sending troops to a very complex conflict.

    • Did they mention the millions of Yeminesse chanting Bring on World War 3? No one ever thinks oh shit things are about to go bad until building start blowing up all around.

  3. Luxon took on a disjointed political party and in 2 years pulled it together and then won an election and drew in 2 opposition parties to form a government. Well done I say
    Whereas Hipkins took on a party that had won by a large majority but could not control his team who broke laws broke promises and lost the election .
    Which person do you want leading at the time of a crisis

    • It’s only well done if he does a good job. That seems vanishingly unlikely. Best thing for NZ would be if he resigned – he hasn’t got a clue how to rebuild an economy savaged by far Right bullshit and hollowed out by immigration and real estate inflation.

    • He didn’t draw in two opposition parties.
      He was FORCED to have them because his own message is flaky, vague, lacks depth in understanding of NZ, carries unpleasant baggage from their previous time in govt. and is generally not enthusiastically welcomed by the electorate.
      He personally is inadequate and about as inspiring as a wet weekend.
      If he was as wonderful as you say, he wouldn’t have needed them Trevor. Why don’t you face facts?

    • Labour self-destructed so Luxon winning the highest vote in the election was not as impressive as you claim. National could have run a stuffed pig & it would still have won. While Jacinda got a lot of bad press (some of it deserved) when she got a majority (the first in a very long time) she made a point of saying that she wanted to govern for all New Zealanders while the current coalition has shown that they only care for those at the top & still believe in the widely discredited trickle down theory.

  4. This, from The Guardian-George Monbiot.
    An exceptional must-read in my humble opinion. “intrinsic” and “extrinsic”. Who’d a thunk it.
    Graeme Hart? Pay attention.
    ” But the shift goes deeper than politics. For well over a century, the US, more than most nations, has worshipped extrinsic values: the American dream is a dream of acquiring wealth, spending it conspicuously and escaping the constraints of other people’s needs and demands. It is accompanied, in politics and in popular culture, by toxic myths about failure and success: wealth is the goal, regardless of how it is acquired. The ubiquity of advertising, the commercialisation of society and the rise of consumerism, alongside the media’s obsession with fame and fashion, reinforce this story. The marketing of insecurity, especially about physical appearance, and the manufacture of unfulfilled wants, dig holes in our psyches that we might try to fill with money, fame or power. For decades, the dominant cultural themes in the US – and in many other nations – have functioned as an almost perfect incubator of extrinsic values.”

    • Scripture has been saying the same thing for thousands of years except they call it the flesh or the spirit.
      Martyn does a great job of calling the powerful/wealthy to account for their greed but the same selfish attitude is in all of us if we let it rule. You only need to look at today’s example of the Sharing store closing
      to see that entitlement rather than gratitude can infect all people. I can appreciate that life is extremely difficult for many people often starting with the bad luck of being born to people not suitable to be parents however when some of them choose to abuse services set up to help them that are not able to provide all that they need that is wrong. An even worse habit is people who actually have enough for their needs yet by deceit/cunning they take advantage of help services often further depriving those with less ability & a greater need.


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