Map of the Day

BxFjMKpIYAAj04o

The Mercator projection really, really, distorts things.  Here is the comparison of Greenland versus Africa.

 

John Armstrong’s ‘Moment of Struth’ column was dead right

John Armstrong, I thought, had his moments during the campaign, losing the plot several times and abandoning his normally objective view of politics.

Let’s reprise his column of September 17, just three days before the election where he predicted there would be a back lash against Kim Dotcom and the left wing who embraced and invested in his conspiracy theories.

Hell hath no fury like a voter who feels he or she has been treated like a fool.

The political left was already paying a heavy price at this election for displaying the characteristics which leave voters stone cold – namely disunity, political incompetence and not a little arrogance.

The left may now pay an even bigger price on Saturday thanks to Kim Dotcom’s Moment of Truth evaporating into a Moment of Struth – as in “struth, was that all he had to reveal” after months of squashing much else far more worthy of debate out of the political picture.

So robust was Dotcom’s evidence of prime ministerial untruths supposed to be that it would sink John Key faster than the Bismarck. Instead it is Dotcom who is now facing a backlash for failing to deliver.

So far, that backlash is confined to media who have been strung along for months. Voters may be more tolerant – but only up to a point. They take objection to being hoodwinked.

Read more »

“News”: people vote with their wallets

Christchurch people appear to vote with their wallets.

The Press compared the party vote for each Christchurch polling booth to the level of poverty in the area.

The results broadly show that Labour won the party vote in poor suburbs stretching northeast from Sydenham to New Brighton, while National won the party vote in areas like Fendalton and the Port Hills.

Analysis of how people voted in areas with different poverty levels shows National picked up about 60 per cent of their Christchurch support in the city’s more affluent areas, compared to 42 per cent for Labour and 54 per cent for the Green Party.

National attracted about 25 per cent of their Christchurch vote from the city’s poorer suburbs, compared to 43 per cent for Labour.

University of Canterbury political science Alex Tan said the battleground for votes was in middle-class suburbs populated by swing voters.

Nothing new then.   It is interesting to see it mapped however   Read more »

Hone Harawira happy with his choices

Feel like having your gob smacked?  Well, this is the story to do it.  Hone is comfortable with his choices around the Mana / Dotcom / Internet Party debacle.

… last night [Hone] told Campbell Live he wasn’t yet ready to say whether he had any regrets about tying his fortunes to Dotcom – a move that was widely regarded as having cost him his seat.

“That too I guess is something that I want to have a longer talk with Laila about and I’ll save those comments until after that. I owe Laila that, I owe Kim that.

“So I’m just holding off on those comments until after I’ve had that korero, that’s the right thing to do. I haven’t had the chance to catch up with Kim and I need to have a korero one on one so I look forward to that.”

He said he hadn’t seen Dotcom’s speech on Saturday in which the controversial internet entrepreneur apologised to him for costing him his seat by associating his “damaged brand” with Mana.

“Honestly, I feel really comfortable about the work that we’ve done and in the end when it became obvious that a whole lot of other parties were just standing against poor little old me, [it] became obvious that we weren’t going to be able to pull that off.”

Little old me?  Spare me.   Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Photo: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington. Photograph from the main eastern theater of war, Meade in Virginia, August-November 1863.

Photo: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington.
Photograph from the main eastern theater of war, Meade in Virginia, August-November 1863.

Communication during the American Civil War

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Midday madness

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Leonardo DiCaprio’s climate change double standard

Climate Change hypocrites abound, every country has them.

In New Zealand we have Lucy Lawless and in the US they have plenty more. Al Gore is int eh A-League for climate hypocrisy, and Leonardo DiCaprio is now in the same league.

His carbon footprint so far in 2014 would be a minimum of 40 million metric tons, more than twice the average American output.

With his speech in front of the United Nations today, Leonardo DiCaprio cemented his reputation as one of the world’s highest-profile activists on climate change.

‘You can make history …or be vilified by it,’ he told world leaders.

After marching with 400,000 others on the streets of New York this weekend to demand tough regulations to cut the amount of CO2 being pumped into the air, DiCaprio opened a UN climate change summit by urging world leaders to crack down on polluters and ‘put a price tag on carbon emissions.’

But the 39-year-old Hollywood star’s own jetset lifestyle reveals a double-standard on the issue of climate change.

In his speech to the UN, he said: ‘This disaster has grown beyond the choices that individuals make.’

MailOnline can report that DiCaprio took at least 20 trips across the nation and around the world this year alone – including numerous flights from New York to Los Angeles and back, a ski vacation to the French Alps, another vacation to the French Riveria, flights to London and Tokoyo to promote his film Wolf of Wall Street, two trips to Miami and a private jet to Brazil to watch the World Cup.

And those were just the trips where he was spotted in public.

Additionally, DiCaprio owns at least four homes: two apartments in New York and mansions in Hollywood and Palm Springs.

He also recently sold an estate in Malibu for $17million.

And this summer, he spent his World Cup vacation on the fifth largest yacht in the world, which is owned by Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan – a billionaire oil tycoon from the UAE.

[...]    Read more »

Cartoon of the Day

myturn2

Credit: SonovaMin

Key’s first move: remove another Labour policy plank

While the Labour Party is completely self absorbed, Key is moving ahead and cutting off another policy area that has traditionally been Labour’s

Prime Minister John Key has asked his officials for fresh ideas on tackling child poverty.

On his first day back at Parliament since being re-elected on Saturday, Key said he had ordered Treasury and Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet officials to start presenting new ideas.

‘‘The recognition I think we all have is that there are some extremely poor children who are missing out,’’ Key said yesterday.

‘‘And so then the question is how do you resolve those issues, it’s not straightforward but there will be more you can do.’’

Key said it needed to be done without narrowing the gap between the incomes of those on benefits and those working, to ensure people were still encouraged into work.

Breakfasts in schools, free doctors’ visits for young children and tax credits for low and middle income families were examples of policies that could be used to tackle the problem, as could programmes such as Whanau Ora.

No resting on laurels, and the trough remains open to keep the Maori Party in cheque check. Read more »

Play or get off the field

As Labour lurches towards utter destruction with David Cunliffe at sixes and sevens there are some out there with good advice.

Lew at Kiwipolitico had this to say about National’s excellence at data-driven campaigns:

I have been criticising Labour, in particular, since at least 2007 on their unwillingness or inability to bring modern data-driven campaign and media strategy to bear in their campaigns — effectively, to embrace The Game and play it to win, rather than regarding it as a regrettable impediment to some pure and glorious ideological victory. Mostly the responses I get from the faithful fall under one or more of the following:

  • National has inherent advantages because the evil old MSM is biased
  • the polls are biased because landlines or something
  • the inherent nature of modern neoliberal society is biased
  • people have a cognitive bias towards the right’s messaging because Maslow
  • it inevitably leads to populist pandering and the death of principle
  • The Game itself devours the immortal soul of anyone who plays ( which forms a handy way to demonise anyone who does play)

But data is not a Ring of Power that puts its users in thrall to the Dark Lord. And, unlike the One Ring, it can’t be thrown into a volcano and the world saved from its pernicious influence. Evidence and strategy are here to stay. Use them, or you’re going to get used. The techniques available to David Farrar and the National party are not magic. They are available to anyone. Whether Labour has poor data or whether they use it poorly I do not know. It looks similar from the outside, and I have heard both from people who ought to know. But it doesn’t really matter. Data is only as good as what you do with it. Whatever they’re doing with it isn’t good enough.

The best example from this campaign isn’t Labour, however — it’s Kim Dotcom. He said on election night that it was only in the past two weeks that he realised how tainted his brand was. He threw $4.5 million at the Internet MANA campaign and it polled less than the Māori Party, who had the same number of incumbent candidates and a tiny fraction of the money and expertise. Had he thought to spend $30,000 on market research* asking questions like those asked by Curia about what New Zealanders think of Kim Dotcom, he could have saved himself the rest of the money, and saved Hone Harawira his seat, Laila Harré her political credibility, and the wider left a severe beating.

That is effective use of data: not asking questions to tell you what you want to hear, but to tell you what you need to know. This electoral bloodletting is an opportunity for the NZ political left to become reality-adjacent, and we can only hope they take it. Because if they don’t, reality is just going to keep winning.

Read more »