The most important number in a coup

The most important number in a coup is One. Politics is a zero sum game, and you either have a seat or you don’t.

Let’s put it in perspective. Say you happen to be an MP who holds a marginal seat, and that margin happens to be 1117, and you also happen to be number 37 on the list, so you need to hold your seat to get back into parliament.

Things aren’t quite going your way. You got busted rooting a stenographer, and the word on the street was that when your missus stopped flinging pots you ended up “looking like death” or as if “you hadn’t slept for a week”. Then your standard Labour tactic of being a total rude prat towards your opponent ends up with the front page of the local paper saying you are “Nasty”, nicely framing the election for your opponent who is very nice. So your hold on a previously safe Labour seat is by the finger nails.

Then you look at the polls. Your leader is popular with barely 7% of voters. About two thirds of your party’s voters disapprove of your leaders performance. Your party is 25% behind in the polls and when they were 11% you only won by 1117 votes against a genial old duffer rather fond of waving at traffic. This time you are up against a well connected business woman who has broad appeal due to the huge amount of good work she has done in the community. So it looks like you will be back home with the missus and she will be taking a very strict line on all extra curricular activities.

The question is do you accept the current leader and stand by your man (when everyone knows you didn’t stand by your stenographer), or do you stick the knife in and vote for a change giving yourself a chance of keeping your seat?

You to save your skin you become a “one”. Other “ones” will follow.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.

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