Andrew Little

Is Andrew Little a fool’s fool?

By Barry

The latest Labour “policy” on housing is a myth. Harking back to the Age of Mickey Savage and the great State housing programme of the 1930s, appealing to nostalgia and the glory days of the Labour party is doomed. Firstly, in the great depression there were many thousands of people out of work and industry was at a low ebb. So, the stimulus of the building programme was useful to get people back into work and to get industry busy again on a grand scale. Whether it would have been successful economically we will never know because WWII intervened with its own unique set of economic circumstances.

Compare that with today where build activity is at an all-time high and there are constraints on land, materials and skills. How does he really think he can do even more than is currently being done? Even if we conveniently ignore the role of councils and the RMA as a handbrake on development, things are at pretty much at capacity now.

Then there is creating a ministry to do all the organising. I can see it now: expensive rental office space in Wellington with hundreds of bureaucrats to create policy – always a favourite. Then there are all the planning, administration and project staff. Then add in all the regional offices. Let’s just throw a ballpark number in there of 1000 staff at a cost of $100k each for salary and administration and overhead costs. Gosh, we are up to $1 billion before a single sod is turned, and this is just creating the bureaucracy to do what the private sector is doing currently. This is really doing my head in already. Read more »

National steals the only good thing from Labour’s housing policy

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National’s ‘Mr Fix-It’ Steven Joyce has turned out to be ‘Mr Blabbermouth’, revealing the Government will no longer take a $92 million dividend from Housing New Zealand.

In a major policy change which appears to be a backdown, Mr Joyce says the Government will not take the divided for two years and the money will instead go to building more state houses.

The social housing corporation was forecast in the Budget to fill the Beehive’s coffers with $38m this year, and $54m next year. Read more »

Little impresses, but apparently he’s been set up to fail

via One News

via One News

Cam’s very good friend Brian Edwards has come out of retirement to praise his golden boy:

Having of late been more critical than approving of Andrew Little’s efforts in television interviews I now come to praise him: he handled a lengthy and confrontational interview with the terrier-like Lisa Owen on ‘The Nation’ exceptionally well. His ums, ers and y’knows were gone, he was fluent, his eye contact was sustained and he looked confident. The interview should have been a winner.

Uh oh. Should? I can feel an ill wind… Read more »

Observing Andrew Little in the wild

Andrew Little 3

by Paul

I am not the most observant at the best of times and, having commenced a return to Wellington from my uncle’s funeral up north, I was probably fairly preoccupied and a bit melancholy as I waited for my gate call from Auckland airport at about 11:30 on Thursday morning.

I was just passing the time watching people wandering around when I noticed Andrew Little and three other guys (whom I couldn’t resist thinking of as his ‘goons’, but are probably a mix of media men and security) making a purposeful walk through the domestic terminal to what I assume must have been his appointment with the media to outline Labour’s plan to tackle housing or something with money they don’t have. Read more »

Compulsory Maori for all children under the next Labour government

Andrew Little has done it again: just blurted something without thinking it through.

Labour leader Andrew Little wants Te Reo Māori to be compulsory in New Zealand schools.

The country is been celebrating Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori – Māori Language Week over the past five days, and in an interview about it, Mr Little revealed his plans to take the language mainstream.

“I think it should be compulsory in primary school and certainly the first couple of years of secondary school,” he says.

The Labour leader says Te Reo Māori was woven into the fabric of his community in Taranaki during his childhood, and now believes the country is ready to incorporate the language even further.

“I am a strong believer in new generations, Pākehā, Māori, whatever, learning Te Reo as a way of understanding Māori culture in New Zealand,” he says.

“The one thing that distinguishes New Zealand around the world is our Māoritanga and I think those of us living here need to understand it.”

The question around Te Reo Māori being made compulsory in New Zealand has created much debate in the past.

Mr Little says there are no qualms about English being compulsory in schools so the same rule should apply for Māori.

Not compulsorily available; no, compulsory to learn it.  Read more »

Little is too grumpy, non-prime-ministerial, in charge of a wet fart

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Part of the mission of getting voters to see Labour as an alternative government means getting them to see Little as a potential Prime Minister. The polls show there is some way to go – Little is consistently outstripped by NZ First leader Winston Peters.

Part of that is familiarity. Little is yet to embark on his full charm offensive of the nation, so people are still operating on first impressions based on soundbites on the news.

In that respect, Little has taken to blunt talking. His first encounter against his opposite in Parliament saw him tell Key to “cut the crap” as Key faced an accusation of smearing a civil servant. Since then he has talked about “stiff-arming” the banks into passing on interest cuts, and accused the Prime Minister of lacking a moral compass and “playing silly buggers”. His tough talking has got him into trouble – hoteliers Lani and Earl Hagaman have sued him for defamation for his comments about a donation to the National Party. Little is clearly aiming to be the strong, straight shooter. But opinions are split on how successful he has been.

He’s known as Angry Andy.  It wouldn’t have stuck if he wasn’t providing proof on an almost daily basis. He even owns the title instead of resiling from it.  Read more »

Quantifying party leader traits to attempt a comparison

Guest Post

Over the last few years probably, since the 1999 election, I have been amazed at the growth of the Liberal progressive both in NZ and overseas. They have probably been around all my life, however, everywhere I turn nowadays it seems they are there telling me and you what to do.

This has led me to ask the question – what is a liberal and in particular, a liberal leader? This in turn led to the inevitable question – what is the definition of liberal?

Liberal –

Adjective:

  1. willing to respect or accept behaviour or opinions different from one’s own; open to new ideas. “liberal views towards divorce”
  2. (of education) concerned with broadening a person’s general knowledge and experience, rather than with technical or professional training. “the provision of liberal adult education”

Noun:

A person of liberal views. “A concern among liberals about the relation of the citizen to the state.”

All pretty straight forward really except that none of the liberal leaders that I have heard fit into any of these categories – in particular – “willing to respect or accept…etc”. In fact I would think that concept would be anathema to a person like Andrew Little

Ouch, now my head started to hurt! So I thought maybe I should look at the term progressive – maybe that will give a better definition of our liberal leaders and what makes them tick.

Progressive –

adjective

  1. happening or developing gradually or in stages. “a progressive decline in popularity”
  2. (of a person or idea) favouring social reform. “a relatively progressive Minister of Education”

noun

  1. an advocate of social reform. “people tend to present themselves either as progressives or traditionalists on this issue”

So… Someone who listens and accepts others views and wishes gradual change for the benefit of all people – nah sorry – this definition does not get close to Andrew and co.

A couple of stiff whiskeys later I hit on the bright idea that maybe Andrew and company are closer to the left than truly liberal or progressive – maybe they are socialist or even communist.

Socialism –

noun

  1. a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.
  2. policy or practice based on the political and economic theory of socialism.
  3. (in Marxist theory) a transitional social state between the overthrow of capitalism and the realization of Communism.

Well, this is certainly getting closer to what I believe Andrew Little and others of his ilk adhere to, but somehow it still doesn’t quite fit. So lets look at –

Communism –

noun

a theory or system of social organization in which all property is owned by the community and each person contributes and receives according to their ability and needs.

Nope still doesn’t cut the mustard – so lets look at the last extreme “ism” and see if they fit in this niche –

Facism –

noun

an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organisation.

(in general use) extreme right-wing, authoritarian, or intolerant views or practices.

“this is yet another example of health fascism in action”

Damn! This definition comes the closest to Andrew Little except it is extreme RIGHT wing. All the other bits fit – extreme, authoritarian (let’s all work together and do it my way) intolerant – in fact, communist Russia was closer to this definition than so-called socialism or even communism.

So, if they don’t fit the definition how is it possible to recognise one of these individuals?

My next thought was to look at the various human traits and see if I could come up with a formulae that would let me identify these types of leaders easily .

I selected the following traits to look at for this exercise: Read more »

Andrew Little survives on a 7% approval rating

…while his predecessors were dumped on higher ratings.

There are parallels with the hapless British Labour Party

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Read more »

Happy birthday Labour, here’s a kick in the nuts from the SST

Jonathan Milne is brutal in today’s Sunday Star-Times:

At 100, like many centenarians, this country’s Labour Party is looking wobbly and confused  – much like its befuddled counterparts in Australia and Britain.

When one celebrates one’s 100th birthday, it is customary to do it with some fanfare, not to mention the obligatory telegram from the Queen.

This week, the New Zealand Labour Party celebrates its 100th birthday. You’d barely know it. They’re really not trumpeting it.

Among the socialists and unionists, radicals and moderates that met in Wellington at the start of July 1916 were some who would go on to become great leaders, most notably Michael Joseph Savage and Peter Fraser.

These were men of conviction: One of the principles that united these activists in 1916 was opposition to the First World War, and Fraser held so strongly to these principles that, later that year, he was sentenced to a year’s jail for sedition.

Savage is widely credited as the father of the welfare state; his mild bespectacled image still looks down from framed photos hanging above some New Zealand mantelpieces.

Where are these leaders of conviction today? Perhaps the reason the centenary celebrations are so muted is that Labour has nobody who can credibly stand in those shoes. Andrew Little is the party’s fourth leader since the party lost the 2008 election; each leader has shown progressively less willingness or ability to enunciate what it is that distinguishes the Labour Party of 2016.

Read more »

Labour turn 100 this week, at their lowest point ever

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The Labour party turns 100 this year and, like a withered old pensioner in the depths of winter, many remaining members are wondering how many more years they have left.

The Labour Party is set to celebrate turning 100 this week and is staging a series of events.

A new history of the party will be launched in Wellington on Thursday and a special conference will be held on Saturday followed by a waterfront birthday bash.

Party leader Andrew Little will speak at the conference before it goes into closed session to work on changes to the way the party selects its list candidates.

The following day Mr Little will be at centenary events in Auckland.

He will speak at a meeting in the city, with a major policy announcement expected.

Read more »