Trevor Mallard

Labour’s positive message didn’t even last a day

Labour promised a positive campaign:

David Cunliffe’s put his MPs on notice – no sledging of the opposition.

Labour’s leader’s to stay away from slinging personal dirt and run a positive campaign, targeting issues and policies.

David Cunliffe admits it won’t be easy for some veteran combatants like Trevor Mallard.

“It’s always a bit tempting in the parliamentary bear pit to respond and we will need to show some restraint and probably won’t be perfect.

David Cunliffe says the New Zealand public is frustrated by the theatrics during question time in Parliament and this is an attempt to improve the political tone.

That didn’t last long, less than a day.Ā  Read more »

If Labour are going to run a POSITIVE campaign, what will they do with Trevor?

Labour’s big message today has been that they are going to be Positive about everything.

Not a nasty word will be spoken, no smears, no Gotcha politics. Ā Just good old fashioned positivity!

Question is… can Trevor manage for 2 months?

Labour’s education ipad policy backtrack has begun

Yesterday it was free ipads for all school kids. Then Davide Cunliffe went on The Nation and gave a rather confusing answer to questions about the policy that was seeded with media as being free.

PG: Letā€™s turn now and talk policy, education, a policy out today you want every student from intermediate upward to have a tablet, to have an iPod?

DC: Absolutely, from year 5 to 13 under a Labour led government, every student will have their own personal digital device, it will be subsidised for parents to get into and thereā€™ll be a very low cost payment plan with a hardship fund for those larger families who perhaps couldnā€™t afford it.

PG: So how will that payment plan work?

DC: You get a hundred dollars up front from the government, you buy a very low cost device which we are able to purchase in bulk, you pay based on theĀ ManaiakalaniĀ model which is working in Point England in Auckland at the moment, about $3.50 a week for which you get service, insurance and out of school access to the Internet.

PG: So how many tablets are you talking?

DC: Oh, weā€™re talking enough for every student in the country.

PG: Do you know how many?

DC: Weā€™ve based it on an estimate of 70-percent of pupils taking this up.

PG: So how many?

DC: Iā€™ll come back to you with the exact numbers. Iā€™m not going to give you an exact number-

PG: And how much is it going to cost?

DC: Itā€™ll cost 19-million dollars in the first year, 41-million of operating expense in the second year and then cruises down to about 30 million a year after that.

PG: Because looking at this, this is universal isnā€™t it, iPads basically?

DC: Theyā€™re not necessarily iPads. InĀ ManaiakalaniĀ theyā€™ve used chrome books or notebooks.

PG: Every kid gets a tablet, son and daughter gets a tablet.

DC: Not necessarily a tablet. You want the best learning device at the best cost.

PG: Everybody gets a computer

DC: Everybody gets a computer. Some kids will have their own.

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Tim Watkin on Labour’s problems

Tim Watkin from Pundit blogs about Labour’s problems.

Normally a fanboi of Labour he has had to write this through gritted teeth.

Damage from within. David Cunliffe so close to getting it right, but still so wrong. And potentially strong and popular policy undermined by off-message gaffes… When Labour supporters gathered at the party congress this weekend get around to asking why their party isn’t doing better, it only has to look back at the pastĀ week to see the party’s problemsĀ laid bare in miniature.

If you wanted proof that the party’s internal divisions still aren’t resolved, you only have to look at Trevor Mallard’s moa comments. Some say he’s desperate for attention to keep his Hutt South seat, some say he’s just going off as usual. But he’s more experienced and strategic than that, and this was a prepared speech he was then ringing round urging media to cover, not some outburst. The imagery of extinction was profound; the impression that Mallard would ratherĀ waste another three years in Opposition than see Cunliffe as Prime Minister, hard to ignore. It seems pretty clear that some Labour MPs are happy to lose this one so that they can get their own leader/puppet/fellow traveller in place for 2017. To me, that’s disgraceful in any party. If you don’t believe strongly enough to fight against three more years of the other guys, you shouldn’t be standing.

Hence, if Labour party members want any sort ofĀ shot at government, they’d better use this weekend to get the ABC (Anyone But Cunliffe) club in a corner and tell them to shut up or bugger off.

They can’t get rid of the ABCs, they are entrenched in safe Labour seats. The problem lies though not with them but with the activists and Cunliffe loyalists seeking to purge when purge is impossible.

The ill-discipline was catching, though, and Cunliffe went off-message himself on Friday saying he was sorry for being a man.

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Labour needs one of these rules

With the Labour party Congress on this weekend and with Trevor Mallard running amok off message, they could really do with a similar rule to the one just implemented in the NRL.

The NRL’s salary cap changes for next year include a “no dickheads policy” that allows clubs to sack misbehaving players without being financially penalised for doing so.

Cronulla had to make the agonising decision to get rid of their star playmaker, Todd Carney, after he was embroiled in another controversy, this time a lewd photo that went viral.

The NRL’s salary cap changes, which were announced a month ago, will not take effect in time to benefit the embattled Sharks. However, clubs are less likely to tolerate abhorrent behaviour from next year, knowing the funds allocated for terminated players can be spent rebuilding their roster. Ā Ā  Read more »

Mike Hosking on Labours failure

Mike Hosking gives Labour a few handy hints about why it is they are failing.

They won’t listen, instead they will attack Hosking, but that doesn’t make what he says any less important.

This weekend Labour’s doing what National did last weekend, except they’re calling it a Congress.

It’s the big party get-together that takes on new meaning given it’s election year.

I bet Labour wishes it wasn’t election year.

Or if it has to be election year, I bet Labour wishes it was January again and they could start all over.

Labour’s in a mess.

They look in no shape at all to compete, far less win an election.

Up until about now I’ve been running the line that’s generally run in election year when it comes to polls and predictions.

The line is that, “there’s still a lot of water to go under the bridge”, the line is, “a week is a long time in politics”, the line is, “the polls will tighten”.

Well as we sit here now this morning I feel less and less of that is true.

It looks increasingly possible that a lot of what appears might happen, actually will happen, even though it’s July and the vote’s in September.

One of the things I think will happen is that Labour won’t break 30 per cent and quite possibly will do worse than that.

The tragedy of that is they will have committed one of life’s great sins.

In life you learn from your failures.

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Cartoon of the Day

Credit:  SonovaMin

Credit: SonovaMin

Miliband suffering the same malaise besetting Cunliffe

Ed Miliband is an ordinary leader heading up an ordinary party beholden to factions and union cash. David Cunliffe is in the same boat and theya re facing the exact same issues.

Like Miliband, Cunliffe is being ‘gamed out’:

Ed Miliband has failed to “reconcile” the “different camps” at the top of the Labour party which are undermining the party’s prospects, one of the party’s senior figures has privately warned.

In a leaked recording passed to The Telegraph, Jon Cruddas, the Labour leaderā€™s policy adviser, said ā€œa lot of things havenā€™t really been reconciledā€ and also warned that Mr Miliband was being ā€œgamed outā€ on a weekly basis.

The recording, said to have been made at last week’s Fabian conference is the second such warning to have been privately sounded by Mr Cruddas in recent weeks.

Last month, he criticised “the dead hand” of the Labour leader’s office on policy development. Ā Ā  Read more »

Claire Trevett on Mallard’s moa

Claire Trevett has a lash at Trevor Mallard’sĀ moaĀ malarkey:

Taika Waititi recently said of his movieĀ What We Do in the ShadowsĀ that everybody needs a bit of silly in their lives. Labour’s Trevor Mallard immediately took his advice.

He gave a speech to the Wainiuomata Business Development breakfast. It began well. A lifelong Wainuiomartian, Mr Mallard spoke of his links to the valley, over the hill from the Hutt Valley. He made a good joke about being in the under 7s cricket team, which was all out for six runs against arch rivals Riverside. “We took our name too literally.”

He spoke of the joys of the valley’s microclimate, its community spirit, its need to attract more people and the low property prices, getting in a jab at the value to loan requirements making it harder for young families in the area to buy first homes “as a side effect of targeting Auckland house prices”.

So far, so on message. Then he revealed he’d been spending quite a bit of time on Google and he had discovered the solution to Wainuiomata’s problem.

He had discovered the science of de-extinction. He wanted the moa back in the bush around Wainuiomata.

Mallard’s enthusiasm was such that he took a journey around the Press Gallery to deliver the speech in person, along with photos of himself cuddling a kiwi, and illustrations of the Spanish bucardo ibex and the gastric-brooding frog in Australia.

Attempts had already been made to bring these two species back from the dead, although one did die again rather swiftly and the other never resulted in viable foetuses.

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The Big Questions for the Labour Conference

Labour go to their conference over the weekend with piss poor poll numbers and a leader that is unable connect with the New Zealand public.

The big questions for the Labour conference should be around winning. Labour are supposed to be the natural party of government under MMP, yet they have only been in power for 9 out of the 18 years of MMP so far, and look like staying out of power again after the election.

The first and most important question is why is Labour broke? Sources inside Fraser House say that there are repeated acrimonious discussions about Labourā€™s lack of money, and the dead set useless pair of Coatsworth and Barnett hiding from their responsibilities. Political parties cannot survive without good fundraising, and if Coatsworth and Barnett can’t bring the cash in they need to resign.

The next most important question is who can raise money, and who will replace Coatsworth and Barnett? Mike ā€œFat Tonyā€ Williams was a brilliant shakedown artist, and keep the Labour Party well funded for a long, long time. Will Labour be smart enough to bring Fat Tony back, or find a new Fat Tony? Whatever happens Coatsworth and Barnett have proven they can’t raise the money and this has consigned Labour to another election loss. Ā  Read more »