A Leadership Retrospective

As speculation swirls about the ‘unfortunate experiment’ with David Shearer as Labour Leader I did a quick search through my archives to compare Leadership rumbling during the Goff years with what’s happening now.

There are distinct similarities:

Start a whispering campaign on the blogs – check.

Blame poor poll ratings on the fact that people aren’t paying attention – check.

Promise to reconnect with voters by getting out more – check.

Assure the media there are no factions in the party – check.

Blame your political opponents for the leadership speculation – check.

Arrange a stage managed show of support – expect that on Tuesday.

Here’s a video retrospective of Goff’s leadership woes:

Interestingly – you’ll note at the end of this montage there’s a prediction from an anonymous MP that Grant Robertson is positioning himself to come to the rescue if Shearer fails.

That MPs forecast is now looking very accurate.


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  • Peter Wilson

    Of more relevance might be the “Brash Experiment.”

    Goff was a vastly experienced leader who had done the hard yards, his ascent and demise was pretty standard.

    Brash, on the other hand came in from the outside. The big difference was the Orewa speech. Nothing like that is coming from Shearer, and that’s the mistake labour made. In oppostion you have to make waves, and they’re not doing that!

  • Dave

    Peter Wilson….   Yes, as Opposition they need to make waves, but credible waves.   Waves that are believable, and backed by fact.    They are chucking mud, but with no foundation or credible future.  Anyone can do that, look at Kosh.   Same rhetoric, it won’t work, it is not true etc etc.    Bbt nothing behind the allegations and no real policy to back their claims, people are waking up to this, and they are losing support, especially support in their leader.    

    My money is on he will be gone by 15th June…….    

    • Neil

      Compare this with two types of sheep dogs – one a huntaway and one a heading dog. One makes a lot of noise to direct, frighten, (read Mallard) the other quiet, intelligent, observant, and quick to spot the odd rebel (read Shearer) – and then ask a farmer which one he values the most and I reckon he’d come back at you saying you can’t run a farm with only one of them you need both……

  • Gazzaw

    You can see why labour is so desperate. To be leader of the Opposition for a third term is bad enough but far, far worse is the prospect of being the leader of the minor Opposition party with the greens taking the senior role is unthinkable for labour. That would probably finish the party forever.

  • Bea

    Fatal to choose a new leader who is older than the incumbent PM and is already trying the desperate middle-aged man hairdo to disguise the grey and the bald patches.

    Now, bring on the gay guy whose main experience is in a students’ union!

    John Key can laugh all the way to the ballot box.

  • Positan

    Labour’s biggest problem is yet to come.  Every major party has to ensure the education and the positioning according to talent of new blood.  For many months Labour’s machine with all its political, union-action-stemmed and leadership problems has had no focus whatsoever on the regenerative problems it has faced for some time.  

    The leadership from the time of Clark is to blame and must be held solely accountable for what is now a dying party.  Yes, there are still enthusiastic wankers running around making noise, but they’re achieving nothing that would persuade voters to embrace Labour – let alone expect them to be capable of performing in government.  Even worse, Labour’s lot now is so bad that discerning candidates of any potential will have realised what a complete waste of time and effort it would be for them to become involved – not to mention what damage to their credibility could well ensue.

    Our democracy needs a strong and competent opposition – it’s an essential element of government.  I expect that, very soon now, Labour will cease to be the major party of opposition – and where that will leave us, God knows.