Message to Labour – Drop the Lie

Someone once gave me the advice that you should never EVER try to spin a lie.

Own up, accept your mistakes, apologise where necessary, and then move on. labour stillhaven’t done any of that. They still think that the electorate was hoodwinked by a nasty John Key who really eats babies. We know they still think this because they continue to run these attack lines despite all the evidence to the contrary that they are working. Still we can’t expect much better from Labour when they appoint a political cripple as their campaign manager and hire muck-rakers like Clinton Smith aka Steve Pierson aka MartyG into the Goffice.

That’s why Labour’s latest change in strategy is all the more baffling.

A big part of Phil Goff’s current story is that Labour left the books in great shape, and that in 2008 the incoming Government inherited zero net debt.

This is the big lie that Labour is trying to sell, and it banks on the public having worse memories than your average gold fish. (Treasury Forecasts: Page 46)

On the forecasts that the National Government inherited debt was never – EVER – expected to turn around.

The country had entered the recession before the rest of the world, Cullen famously claimed he’d stripped the fiscal cupboard bare

Before his 2008 Budget and these Treasury forecasts were based on maintaining Labour’s previous spending. the claimed that surpluses were structural when they were not, but they left us with expenditure which was more than structural, more like foundational.

Had these settings been maintained, as Phil Goff and Labour has argues, (including the R & D tax credit) the country faced a decade of deficits with surpluses nowhere in sight.

This was before we knew the full extent of the Global Financial Crisis, and before the Canterbury earthquakes.

Yes, Treasury forecasts aren’t always accurate – but if Labour’s banking on growth to pay for its promises whose forecasts is it going to be relying on?

If Treasury does in fact overstate growth (as Labour is currently claiming) then how does Phil Goff explain the dismal forecasts that the current Government inherited. Were they undercooked too or is he saying Treasury is shaping its forecasts to suit the Government of the day?

So what is Phil Goff’s amazing new plan?

  • Bringing back Labour’s more expensive Emissions Trading Scheme
  • Resurrecting the easily rorted R & D tax credits (Alan Gibbs Aquada development?)
  • Opposing Working For Families changes
  • Opposing the suspension of payments to the Super fund
  • Opposing the reprioritisation in Early Childhood Education
  • Opposing Kiwisaver changes
  • Opposing mixed ownership of state assets (READ: $7b more debt)
  • Proposing a new ‘children’s’ Ministry
  • Raising the top tax rate but maybe giving a cut of $10 a week – sometime

That was precisely the plan that the electorate rejected in 2008, resoundingly.

Labour’s ‘big’ plan then was for a mini-Budget because they had no answer to the global meltdown.

Nevertheless, it’s the same plan Labour’s banking on in 2011 and it’s prefaced on the lie that Labour left the books in tip top condition after nine long years at the helm.

I recall Labour used to bang on a lot about economic transformation.  That slogan had its birth in 1996 when Trevor Mallard said farming and tourism were past it and New Zealand would become a nation of ‘thinkers’.  But after nine long years Labour’s promised land never eventuated. The terminal poor were still poor, they were still living in the same crappy crime infested suburbs, their kids going to the same crappy schools and working in the same crappy jobs. Nine years of Labour did nothing for them and never would have if given another 3 years. The only thing past it after all that time is Trevor Mallard, the political cripple.

Does Labour seriously think the public, or bloggers won’t remember what they left us with?


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  • For someone so astute you seem to be missing the target of the communications and messages employed here.

    The reason they Labour are persisting with the strategy they are employing is because they are trying to win back the people that vote emotionally and not rationally. (Bluntly put: IDIOTS).

    In the age of the sound bite, it is the sound bite that stands as “fact”, and the people who feel like National/Maori Party aren’t delivering anything they were “hoping for” will accept these sound bites and NEVER look to the inherent truth within.

    All they want to to do is find 6-8% of “emotional” voters to swing back to Labour.

    Truth does not really come into it.

    Where did I see the other day that a lie, repeated, becomes a fact? All they need is for enough Labour defectors to feel these sound bites addresses them directly, and they have a useful strategy.

    All they have to do now is make sure Goff says as little as possible. (You listening Trev?)

    • thor42

      Agreed, Petal. I will say this for Labour – they know their voters **inside-out**.
      Mind you, that’s not hard. All they have to do is to babble out the usual whining “the gummint should give me more”
      sound-bites and that will be more than enough to win over the boofheads in places like Porirua East, Wainuiomata and South Auckland.

  • (any chance of editing coming back? “they Labour” = “Labour”)

  • monty

    Good work Cam – this needs to be mandatory reading for every Journalist and to use this information to challenge Goff and his lying supporters. Cullen was a vinditcive Prick who purposely lied (about ACC KiwiRail, WFF, and every other government liability). He left a fucked economy for national to then have to pick up the peices. Luck has it that the electorate has seen through the Labour Lies and continues to blame Labour for the state of the economy

    Best Post in a long time

  • axeman

    Yes good old Mikhael Cullenski not only ran up huge surpluses during his tenure, but did it by taking up to 8 billion dollars per annum out of the economy which could have been used by the private sector to save and or invest in the productive sector of NZ.
    Then he overtaxed us, and put in taxation regimes that encouraged investment in property to the point that the average wage can no longer buy the average house, even though banks were lending money to property developers to build houses that no one could afford to buy without the hefty mortgage, that were quite often given with no deposit and no savings record, while the economy was not producing the wealth to sustain the orgy of debt fuelled consumption. They may not have given us tax cuts, but WFF, Student Loans and Kiwisaver had the same effect. We were just being bribed with the same money they took of us to generate the surplus that made them look good and that they bribed us with so they would be re-elected.

    So now it is 2011 and your ‘political cripple’ is Liarbore’s campaign manager. He promises that the ‘Cost of Living’ will be a major election issue for the opposition. So when I attempted to post the following on Daffy’s taxpayer funded personal bogsite, it was inconveniently deleted. FFS.

    “Yes Trevor it is a pity the following stats weren’t available for the National Party’s last election campaign, to show how dire the cost of living was by the end of 2008.

    The economy was in its third consecutive quarter of recession having shrunk 1.5% in nine months.
    Inflation was running at 5.1%, the highest since 1990
    The major contributors were:
    Household Energy up 7.5%
    Hospital Services up 7.1%
    Private Transport up 21.5%
    Primary and Secondary eduction up 5.7%
    Real after tax wages down by 0.8% over the preceding year
    Real exports had declined 2% over the preceding year
    Tradeable part of the economy had been in recession for four years
    Current Account deficit was at 8.6%
    The monthly food price index had an 18-year high of 10.8%. Major contributors:
    Fresh fruit up by 14% over last year
    Vegetables up 22.3%
    Mutton/Lamb up 17.3%
    Bread up 16.5%
    Pasta up 18.2%
    Cheese up 42.3%

  • mediatart

    The charts seem to show that Labour did pay off debt as claimed.
    So what is the problem ? from december 2008 it was all Nationals numbers, in fact they passed laws reducing taxes AND increasing the deficit. This was over and above the tax cuts passed by labour which came into place something like 3 months before the election. This also increased the deficit.
    Of course the GFC had kicked in the previous year and the labours policy was to increase spending to prevent the economy going to in free fall. Labour in Australia had the same policy but continued , which was agreat success. WHaile National won the election but put the brakes on spending which made the recession last longer and actually made the books worse. Thats why we have the gargantual deficit English has put inplace 3 YEARS after labours last budget.

    Whale you seem to have forgotten the rounds of tax cuts we have had , which of course will reduce revenue and increase the deficit. Plus they gave the tax cuts to the wrong people who used it to reduce their own private debt rather than spending to bring the country out of the doldrums

    The only lie is nationals desperate attempt to blame someone else . national in opposition were opposed to paying off debt and thought more debt was great. And that was in good times.

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