Chris Trotter was asked by Andrew Little’s union minder to publish something about Little’s speech to Grey Power in Whanganui.
I bet Neale Jones spat his dinner all over his keyboard when he read what Trotter has written…it is not complimentary.
As you might imagine, I began the speech with high expectations, but, by the time I had ploughed through the first couple of pages, my mood had subsided to one of mild interest. It’s not that it was a bad speech. Indeed, it stands comparison with most of the speeches crafted by ministerial staffers working in the Beehive. Sadly, that is not a very high bar to clear.
I read Little’s speech too…it was dreadfully boring.
There were hilarious parts to it as well…like his claim that filthy foreigners with chinky sounding names were driving up interest rates…he must have missed the news on the drive to Whanganui that the Reserve Bank that very morning has reduced the Official Cash Rate to its lowest mark ever. Such is the idiocy of Andrew Little who constantly makes statements not based on facts.
Like so many of David Lange’s (Margaret Pope’s?) best lines, “the power of decision” positively vibrates with political meaning. Little’s speechwriters recognised this, but were unable to unpack the significance of the phrase in a way that caused their boss’s text to come alive. Instead they opted to, rather mechanically, link the idea of decision-making to Labour’s stances on overseas speculators, foreign ownership, farm sales, the TPPA, refugees and climate change.