Can Shearer do this?

David Shearer’s biggest problem is just stringing coherent sentences together. Should he master that, and Brian Edwards doesn’t think he can, then the next thing he has to do is work out how to connect with Waitakere Man:

Politicians must have the knack of speaking for people, not just to them. Sometimes this means talking, or dog-whistling, to your natural constituency. Mrs Thatcher pulled off this trick. Having spent the first 50 years of her life aspiring to poshness, she realised that it was the lower middle class that would keep her in office, so a Grantham growl reappeared in her voice. Also, she had Poujadist policies to match.

Harold Wilson and Jim Callaghan aren’t fondly remembered, but there were moments when they discovered their voters’ G-spots and even, at times, how to speak to the nation. Ditto John Major before disaster overtook him.


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  • thor42

    I don’t think it matters how Shearer talks to the voters.
    Labour’s policies are crap – that’s the bottom line.
    They love beneficiaries and welfare in general .
    They love the unions.
    They want to increase the amount of money thrown at the beneficiaries.

  • cows4me

    thor42 is correct. But most politicians are voted in because of their charisma our how they project their personality to the great unwashed. I’m sure sheep shagger means well but he just doesn’t have it.

  • Patrick

    Another reason why Key connected, none of the pompous arrogance we saw from Herr Clarke & Cullen. The electorate was sick of the lecuring superior attitude.

  • Troy

    On the leadership spectrum, Key is not autocratic because he’s been able to create an atmosphere amongst his caucas that’s has provided them the environment to get on with things. Clark on the other hand was autocratic (well bi-autocratic because she had her girlfriend H2 with her along the way). Shearer seems to be lost in the void in-between and this confuses voters – they need to know what makes him tick but his obvious inability to communicate coherently has let him down, thus, down goes his credibility. The Leader’s Debate at the next election will be interesting if Shearer is still around – he has a lot of ground to cover to improve his credibility.

  • Evv

    A woman who knew Harold Wilson at Oxford told me once that he had two distinctly different accents. She said the folksy regional accent he used to speak to the public, or on telly, to his working class loyalists, was nothing like the upper class way he had spoken at Oxford.