Gordon Campbell and David Shearer

The other day there was a Gordon Campbell interview with Shearer published.

I really find it hard to fathom why Shearer thinks the global financial crisis and the Canterbury earthquakes were an ‘advantage’. I doubt you’ll find any patriotic Kiwi who would support that.

Danyl McLauchlan has also blogged this interview… but I reckon he missed some of the highlights that I would draw attention to.

On his upcoming speech:

The first one is obviously the most important because people are looking out for it.

On Small business:

I don’t think we’ve got the absolute answer

On National’s popularity:

They also had the advantage of the global financial crisis, the fact the earthquakes had hit and a whole bunch of other things that played to their advantage.

On extending Working For Families To Beneficiaries:

Is that the best way to do it? Why not a Universal Child Allowance? Why not a whole lot of things. I’m just throwing these out,

On Winston Peters:

I don’t see myself competing against Winston Peters. Winston Peters – and this is no disrespect to him, I’ve got a lot of respect for him – can go out on a limb much further than we would feel comfortable about doing. By doing that, he has an impact. Now, is that growing his vote substantially to the detriment of us ? Probably not. But what we can then do is come in and provide a moderate voice into that void. And that seems to me to be a useful thing that opposition parties can do in –

GC: That’s a perfect description of what I mentioned before – of using your potential partners as ideological outriders.

Exactly. And you’ve got it.

Most Vague Answer:

I’m not saying its not the right way to go.


I think if the electorate seat [provision] went, then 4% would.. Look, I’d like to have a look at it, to be perfectly honest. Because I also spent 4 and half years living in Jerusalem where I saw a Knesset absolutely and utterly …(he laughs and shrugs)

On China:

We’ve lived in a bipolar world before. I would argue this is a much more benign polar position than we had before.

Most Curious Answer On Iran:

If you were Iran sitting in the middle and looking across at the new found respect North Korea had….and I’m not in any way supporting the proliferation of nuclear arms… [At this point, Shearer asks to go off the record and chooses not to add anything further on this topic, beyond a call for engagement, rather than sabre rattling.]


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  • Pete George

    “They also had the advantage of the global financial crisis, the fact the
    earthquakes had hit and a whole bunch of other things that played to
    their advantage.”

    He’s on the mark there, National couldn’t have hoped for a luckier term. If none of that happened we’d be much worse off – and Labour would have been able to use last term rebuilding and winning back support from disillusioned voters.

    • onelaw4all

      Are you taking the piss, or are you actually serious?

      Can you break it down how any of these things can be beneficial to the country (and thereby, to National)?

      • Pete George

        Well, they were lucky Labour wasted the opportunity to rebuild. That was one disaster that did actually benefit National.

    • johnbronkhorst

      Well pete this just highlights the difference between National and the left leaning parties. The left (like you) believe this LUCKY for the national party (because given the levers of power Labour etc would use it for EVERY excuse for their failures), National however see it as a difficult challenge to improve and benefit New Zealand as a whole. One (Labour) is all about political expediency, the other (National) is getting on with running the country and doing the best with the cards it has to play!

    • Peter Wilson

      err…if the earthquake hadn’t hit, we’d be worse off?

  • BJ

    I have never heard such wishy washy mumbo jumbo responses from the leader of any of our political parties. When asked what Labour stands for  – Shearer basically says they haven’t figured that out yet – so how can the party even justify its existence?

    Shearer is a manager that is used to implementing  the plans of other decision makers. He is a people and logistics  manager not a leader. 

    There is no place for consensus leadership when it comes to leading a country because nothing will ever get done. True leaders surround themselves with like minded intelligent people and will listen to  advisors that were chosen for their specific skills.  A visionary leader knows what needs to be done and they lead by inspiring others to get on board to help design and implement the plan.

    Shearer seems to want to be a leader but a leader of what? I don’t think he’s figure that out yet.
    I don’t see anyone else in politics in NZ that comes close to John Key leadership attributes.

  • Cobolt

    How long will Labour put up with this time waster?

  • Kthxbai

    It’s beginning to sound as though Mr Shearer has never had a single coherent thought.

  • AnonWgtn

    As a former school teacher Shearer doesn’t appear to have a political clue. He appears to be a typically nice guy though.
    This country needs a strong opposition led by a real leader.
    If not we are left at the mercy of the media backed left wingers, who appear to be making the media go into their incompetent frenzy, as there is no real oppsition available, so they can act as opposition.
    They lost the last election and will do everything thy can to bring the tall poppy Key down.
    I doubt that Grant Robertson will be any better when he takes over – he is a product of Helen’s office, and is a politically devious backroom operator, not a frontperson.