Andrea Vance

National’s strategic stupidity, Ctd

Yesterday I blogged about how MMP hands defeat to John Key, yesterday Andrea Vance also wrote about the exact same issue.

Chin up, Labour. So far most of the polls suggest you are doing a rubbish job at winning this election. But there are five reasons why David Cunliffe can cling to hope that he could still be prime minister this year.

1. The electoral system.

Well, duh. Obviously. Under MMP, post- elections negotiations are a bit like a nail- biting penalty shoot-out. Until now, Winston Peters has hammed up the role of kingmaker to dramatic effect. Now we’ve got a whole new crowd of mavericks on the field: who knows which way Colin Craig, Kim Dotcom and his mystery MP will swing. National can’t even rely on its old pals. The Maori Party is a shadow of itself, likely to take a huge hit in September. ACT’s Jamie Whyte is failing to live up to expectations – with no significant lift in polling since he took over as leader. Last week’s Roy Morgan poll is the first of the year where the left-bloc have regained a lead over National.  Read more »

A message for Cunliffe?

You’ve gotta love context driven ads. Looks at this effort from the NZ Herald.

A message for David Cunliffe? Context driven advertising adds hurt of its own to Labour

A message for David Cunliffe? Context driven advertising adds hurt of its own to Labour

Corin Dann was almost in tears last night, but being a top notch political analyst thought good weather was a factor in Nationals surge. The Greens appear to have been rumbled as complete loons, what with shrieking about racism when none was on offer, living in a castle, twerking and then cuddling up to Kim Dotcom.

Andrea Vance in Fairfax seems equally perplexed and she puts it down to Cunliffe’s lack of exposure.

Cunliffe suffered from a lack of exposure in the last month, dropping two points in the preferred prime minister stakes to 10 per cent.  Key maintained 43 per cent from the last TVNZ poll in October.

I think we saw plenty of him flip flopping and trying to explain the debacle that was his baby bonus.  Read more »

I wonder if the media and left-wing blogs will express outrage over this revelation

In Jono Milne’s Herald on Sunday story about bloggers he drops this little bomb.

On the other side, Bradbury says he regularly talks to Labour leader David Cunliffe, and his goal this year is to see Cunliffe elected Prime Minister.

Bradbury leans forward on his elbows at the cafe table: “The old rules are gone,” he grins. “This election is going to be incredibly vicious.”

Perhaps the headline should have been, as Pete George suggested, “Blogger linked to David Cunliffe declares campaign is going to be “incredibly vicious”.

Martyn Bradbury is fast becoming a political whore.

He has worked for pay for the MANA party, and worked for pay for the Internet party. Now he seems to be very closely aligned to David Cunliffe…in his ear even.  Read more »

Less than honest from Fairfax

Lately many stories have been popping up in other media pimping the poor, hard working people on struggle street, and I really hate using this word relating to anything in NZ…..poverty.  We’ve heard all sorts of stories about poverty. Child poverty, beneficiary poverty, working class poverty, and on it goes. We also hear constantly by those sad faced families sitting on the couch with their 15 kids surrounded by luxuries like sky remotes, xboxes, playstations etc hear how hard it is and that it is all the current Governments fault.

But what we never seem to hear about is journalism poverty. The kind where the National Government is neglecting the journalism community by failing to provide them with a “living wage” of newsworthy material. So much so, they’re having to resort to the desperate means of manufacturing and fabricating the news to fill the newsprint and web pages.

A few days ago Andrea Vance, Michael Fox and Siobhan Downes from Fairfax published one such story  called “Economy rockstars or roadies?“about several working couples who were struggling to make ends meet and having to go without luxuries like alcohol and movie tickets, but there is one part of the article about a particular couple that requires some special attention.

Hawera nurse Anna Tairawhiti is another who hasn’t seen any extra in her pay packet in almost seven years. The medical practice where she works restructured last year but despite the upheaval, and having to re-apply for her job, still no rise.

Her husband – a truck driver who works “shockingly long hours” – got an extra 50c an hour last year. With interest rates set to rise, the family must do without little luxuries such as movie tickets for their teenage children, and alcohol.

“I’ve asked numerous times [for a raise] . . . I’m pretty much sitting [on the pay scale] not much higher than a new grad[uate], even though I’ve got nearly 15 years’ nursing experience. They lay the guilt on that there is not enough money,” Tairawhiti says.

Tairawhiti and Manson are not alone – almost half of workers did not receive a pay rise last year, according to the latest Fairfax Media-Ipsos poll.

Right, so lets pick apart the incomes and circumstance of Mrs “Tairawhiti” and her husband to put some things into perspective here. Mrs Tairawhiti  says “ I’m pretty much sitting [on the pay scale] not much higher than a new grad[uate], even though I’ve got nearly 15 years’ nursing experience”. 

Read more »

KIwi al Qaeda sympathisers fighting in Syria

Andrea Vance reports on Kiwi al Qaeda sympathisers fighting in Syria, or attempting to fight in Syria.

New Zealand passport holders have been identified fighting alongside anti-Government forces in Syria, Prime Minister John Key says.

In some instances, the Department of Internal Affairs had cancelled their passports – some were dual nationality, including Australians, he said.

A small number also had their documents confiscated before they were allowed to leave for the civil war-torn Middle Eastern state, the prime minister said.

Rebel factions have been battling to topple President Bashar al-Assad since 2011.

Key refused to say how many Kiwis have been fighting, or give any details.

He knew of no prosecutions, saying “it was handled in a different way”.

The revelation comes after weekend reports that Australians were “flocking” to the front line. Across the Tasman, the government fears the fighters will return as hardline radicalised Islamists, ready to launch domestic terror attacks.

“Yes, there is likely to … have been a small number of New Zealanders who have fought with the rebels in Syria,” Key said today.

“There are a small group of people that have gone to Syria to fight. There’s a small group that were going to Syria that we stopped … we have physically stopped some and we are clearly aware of others who are in Syria.”  Read more »

Andrea Vance on the silly season

Andrea Vance gives Colin Craig, Martyn Bradbury and Kim Dotcom a good kicking.

What the hell? Did New Zealand politics slip into some alternate reality vortex over New Year?

Everyone, please, put down the sherry and get a hold of yourselves. A dose of reality is necessary as the political year really kicks off this week. In the vacuum of the summer season, some fantasies about the outcome of this year’s election have taken seed.

Smacking is not going to be a defining election issue just because Conservative Party leader Craig says it is. He is the leader of a minor party, outside of Parliament.

Once the election campaign proper starts, and the mainstream party machines kick into gear, Craig will find he has to do more than put on a tinfoil hat to get media attention.

Single issue nutters abound…and gravitate to the mad type parties, of which Colin Craig’s vanity project is one.

Speaking of crackpot strategies, was it the electoral roll of a parallel universe that was going to return Martyn Bradbury ahead of cabinet minister Nikki Kaye or Labour high-flier Jacinda Ardern in Auckland Central?

And since when did left-wing activists like Bradbury start whoring themselves out to businessmen who want to use their vast wealth to exert influence over the political and justice system?    Read more »

Who to believe, a marxist or a german?

Martyn “Suicide Bomber” Bradbury reckons the paper I leaked was preliminary and also that he wasn’t working for them. He stated on Wednesday on his little read socialist hate speech blog the following.

The moment I start working for the Internet Party if I am offered a role I will be shouting it from the rooftops as I think the ideas of an Internet Party focused on civil rights in the online 21st Century and the economic prosperity that could generate for NZ is the future and anything that moves us away from a dairy dependent, drill and mine economy is a good thing.

But all it was, was a proposal. If that changes, I will let you all know.

That is the last thing in two days that Martyn “Suicide Bomber” Bradbury has written about this fiasco.  Read more »

Sex Sells

This is a list of the top 50 posts for the year…there is little doubt as to what was the story of the year.

We have had all manner of media commentators exclaim that the Len Brown story was “too detailed”…but you know what…they all read it.

As a species we are hypocrites.  We pretend to be better than that, but the numbers don’t lie. From Len Brown and Bevan Chuang to Andrea Vance and Peter Dunne…the message is simple to Stephanie Key to Oscar Pistorious…people like to read about dodgy, rooting ratbags, sex and scandal.

But I think it is more dodgy rooting rat bags that sells.

If Len Brown had have just been happy running one up his missus at home there would be no scandal and people could say ‘Ngati Whatua Room’ without laughing hysterically.

Here are the Top 50 posts for the past year.  Read more »

Line of the Year?

Andrea Vance comes good with this cracker of a line:

With his current coalition parties in a sorry decline, Key is trapped between a Peters-shaped rock and a hard place, occupied by Craig.

A coalition deal with Peters is a rather bitter pill to swallow, particularly given all that Key has said about the veteran politician in the past.

Peters has also demonstrated this term that he is not going to make it easy for Key. Humiliated over Key’s snubs, he proved just how refractory he can be during negotiations over National’s new spying laws.  Read more »

Colin Craig’s Whaleoil Approved/ Disapproved Policies

Colin Craig is featured in the Sunday Star Times in an article by Andrea Vance. They look at his top ten policies.

Lt’s run my rule over them and look at what is crazy and what is acceptable.

Craig’s List [WO: Haha, most voters won't get that joke]

Who are the Conservative Party – and what do they believe? Steve Kilgallon comes up with 10 of their more interesting policy platforms:

1. Spending beyond their means: Leader Colin Craig says he’d like to match Australia’s defence spending at a “percentage level”. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s figures, Australia’s defence budget is US$26.1 billion. Ours is $1.358 billion. If Craig’s sums are based on GDP, it means an extra $1.55 billion; if it’s on population, it means another $4.87 billion. Either way, it’s a lot of guns.

More Guns, but what is he going to cut to fund everything else? A bit gay.

2. If it wasn’t immediately obvious, more guns: Craig would consider introducing national service in return for free tertiary education. And let everyone else have a gun too: the right to bear arms, and the “Castle Doctrine” (basically, the right to shoot burglars).

First bit hasn’t been costed so totally gay. The Castle Doctrine should be a bottom line. I am a big supporter of the right to bear arms and the right to defend your house.  Read more »