Braunias on Shearer

Steve Braunias has David Shearer’s diary:


My new chief of staff brought in an unfamiliar document.

I said, “What is it?” He said, “It’s a newspaper.” He suggested I read the latest column by political commentator Chris Trotter.

I said, “I love his show on National Radio on Sunday mornings. It’s very relaxing.”

He said, “No, that’s Chris Laidlaw.”

Trotter’s column wasn’t very relaxing. It demanded that I get off the fence and take a stand alongside locked-out workers at the Port of Auckland.

It’s hard to take Trotter seriously.

He’s Left-wing.


Called a meeting with my new chief of staff.

I asked him, “You look familiar. What’s your name?”

He said, “Stuart Nash. I was an MP last term.”

I said, “Forget the past. Focus on the future. We need to connect with New Zealanders much better than we have.”

He suggested we sit down and discuss policy.

I said, “Didn’t you listen to a word I just said, Steve?”

He said, “It’s Stuart.”


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  • Grandstream

    priceless !

  • Petal

    That “Diary of…” theme is getting a right beating to death init?

  • Kimbo

    Heard Shearer on Radio Live this morning driving to work.

    I hold no ill-will to the guy, and I’d like to think I don’t give a damn about how media-polished politicians are. I prefer the sausage and not the sizzle (which is why I know Jacinda Ardern is a flake). I actually liked Phil Goff, thought he is a good guy, but didn’t care for the destination where his party had been driven under the previous leader with a whole bunch of class-warfare buzzards feasting on the contrived misery of their supposed constituency, and thought Labour’s policies were especially crap in 2011.

    Anyway, I’m trying to at least listen to Shearer with an open-mind, and concentrate on what he is saying.

    Can’t do it! What a hopeless communicator. And usually hopeless communication is not just a matter of natural ability. Unless you are being downright dishonest or evasive, you can enhance whatever capacity for clarity you’ve got (and if you are a politician you have to!), if you do two things: –

    1. Have clear and coherent goals
    2. You organise your mind so you are able to explain at the drop of a hat how and when you are going apply them.

    It’s not that hard, and if you can’t do it as the next Prime Minister in waiting, God defend New Zealand, because I’ve heard nothing to suggest David Shearer could!

    • Hakim of Phut

      Exactly what they said about John Key before he became PM. They said he couldnt put his words in a coherent sentence and that meant he wasnt fit to be PM.
      We all know how that turned out

      • Kimbo

        thought about that when I was listening to Shearer, but this is more than just a matter of a thick Kiwi accent.

        Key, no matter what you might think about him, communicates in a way that achieves the effect he wants. Sometimes (often when dealing with the press) it is dodging bullets. Fair enough – all politicians have to do it. However, with Key you know what the message is, and he’ll continually try and steer back to it – aspiration

        Shearer yesterday was different – a bunch of cliches and spaghetti thrown at a wall with no coherent thread or direction of where he wanted to take the listener.

        Is difficult for the guy, because his party has to go through a few more wilderness years to work out what it is about – or wait for the inevitable electoral pendulum swing their way.

        I also know he spoke some stuff about “listening” to people. OK. But you’ve gotta be more than a sounding board reflecting back what people think and say – because they think and say different things. That is where Key’s critics get him wrong – he can reflect back well, but underneath his “aspiration” message is still intact.

    • AnonWgtn

      Playing rather more quickly into Grant Robertson’s hand. He is the politician’s politician from H3 role under Helen Clark and Heather Simpson,¬† Grant knows all the angles and buttons to push in the political/public “service” places. The Rainbows of all hues are behind him. Ther is nothing Shearer can do to alleviate this pressure, sadly. He will not have a chance as the political caucus is sadly still fighting last years wars. The Green Party¬†can see this and are already exploiting weaknesses in Labour.

  • bb

    nice bit of humour. ta muchly.