What were Labour about again? Oh yeah, Positive. And definitely nothing “dirty”


The Prime Minister has accused Labour of running a smear campaign against Bill English after releasing a “doctored” recording of him calling some Kiwi workers “hopeless”.

Labour’s workplace relations spokesman Iain Lees-Galloway yesterday released a recording from a public Federated Farmers meeting on Friday which was also attended by several journalists.

In that recording, the Finance Minister said some workers, especially ones needed to work in the dairy industry were “pretty damned hopeless” and “don’t look to be employable”.

Mr English has stood by the claim, saying it was a “realistic description” of the situation, which is echoed by employers around the country.

Labour used the recording to attack the Government’s record on employment, but Prime Minister John Key has accused them of altering the recording.

“It’s really disappointing actually. They’ve doctored the tape recording to take out the bit where he says ‘this is what some in the industry say’, and they’ve doctored the bit which says ‘we need to help these people to make sure they get employment’.

“So in the context of reading the full quote, you can understand why the minister said it,” Mr Key said today.

He said there were people who needed a “high degree of assistance” to get into the workforce and some who needed to take responsibility for making themselves ready for work such as clearing up drug habits.

“This is a case of trying to smear a National Party minister and using misinformation to do that.”

Mr Lees-Galloway concedes the recording is a partial one […]

The question Labour needs to ask themselves:  Will this get us more votes?

If not, then don’t do it.

The Labour Party are acting like a bunch of union thugs on a picket line, and not like a party that’s looking to build broad support.

Good-o.  Long may it last.


– Simon Wong, Newshub


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  • Vutekno

    And who better than Lees – Galloway to pitch this dirty politic move. They really ca’t help themselves can they. I just hope they don’t wake up to the fact that most people can see through their sordid antics and judge them accordingly.

  • OT Richter

    The overwhelming majority of people who called into Garner on Radio Live yesterday afternoon supported English, and in most instances gave examples of the issues they faced as an employer.

    Is this a vote winner for Labour? No.

    • Isherman

      Ditto on Larry Williams ZB slot yesterday, this has very quickly becaome an own goal for Labour.
      The few lefties that accepted some people were unfit for employment still found a way to make it Nationals fault though, they simply blamed National on education and training.

  • Dave

    Its a disappointing few words from Simon Wong, perhaps he dropped the R from his last name. The point should be that Labour, in particular Lees-Galloway has released a partial, or doctored recording of English’s statement, but wrong Wong does not even question this, does not condemn it, just notes it at the end of the article, when 90% of readers have finished reading. It would be far better had Mr Wong decided to highlight the desperate lengths Lees – Galloway and Labour had gone to, to try and get a hit on Bill English.

    • JustTinkering

      Why would you spoil a good story with the truth?

  • cows4me

    The left are nothing but intellectual cowards. They can’t present sound arguments or evidence to support their views so the evidence has to be doctored. There are many, extremely mentally challenged, that will lap this lie up which is a shame. But the fact remains if you have to alter the evidence to support your lies then you have nothing of real value to offer the country as your values and morals are not sound to start with.

    • Orca

      For a moment there I could have sworn you were talking about climate change.

  • Steely Man

    I have just watched the Newshub video of Maiki Sherman from Wednesday on this issue. It shows clips of the Question Time exchange EXCEPT that in the real exchange Bill English explains he was paraphrasing comments he receives from industry whereas in the Newshub piece that comment is edited out (badly). These guys must be almost criminal in their active bias!

  • niggly

    Sneaky, underhand Iain Lees-Galloway making secret recordings (as stated by some of the MSM themselves!) and then tattle-tails off to the media with selective soundbites. What a dirty, filthy political operator, an MP no less to make it even worse.

    Next time he appears at a function with Govt Ministers, all eyes will be on him or his staffers to see what dodgy recordings they are about to make.

    Heard RNZ Checkpoint’s John Campbell interview Bill English last night and Bill English gave a good account, quoting stats and figures and on the whole it seemed like John Campbell accepted that.

    They even played most/alot of the recording (of presumably Iain’s recording) and in full context what Bill English was saying wasn’t controversial (not that it ever was) and in fact Bill English explained himself quite well. Eg he wasn’t making on-liner digs at those lazy NZers, simply stating a fact then backed it up with some examples.

    In the meantime Labour and Iain Lees-Galloway’s credibility has taken another massive nose dive. Oh dear, self inflicted too, how sad!

    • R&BAvenger

      Labour – 25% here we come. Little 5% here I come.!! They have no credibility and neither do the people who vote for them, how could you??!!

  • ChrisM

    Dirty Politics. Pure and simple. Disgusting.

  • Murray Pratt

    The disappointing part about Labour is their strength that they have got not. No back bone what’s so ever from No:1 down to 32. As good as the Key Government is, just imagine if National had strong opposition and how much more they would be forced to make accomplishments to stay ahead. Maybe this is Labours plan to hold back National and their achievements, but even that is not working.
    Come on Lees-Galloway, that’s school boys stuff, but I bet you MSM wont have to much to say about it.

  • Usaywot

    I can just see Labour’s caucus meetings ” OK, guys, we’ve done well this week a couple of own goals and a few blatant lies. Let’s see if we can up the count for next week.” The idiots probably think an own goal is a positive thing, you know, we scored our own goal.

  • Grizz30

    When you resort to cutting and pasting your opponents quotes to make out they are saying something totally different it really states that you have got nothing else to offer. You are now scraping the bottom of the barrel.

    • Alan Beresford B’Stard

      Cutting and pasting, a habit he must have picked up from Grant Robertson.
      Don’t these clowns have original thoughts of their own.

  • axeman

    Has got McCartens fingerprints all over it I reckon

  • Whitey

    This is just hilarious. Here is Lees-Galloway trying to smear Bill English by doctoring a recording so that English appears to say something the majority of NZers agree with! Someone needs to have a word with him and explain how the concept of smearing actually works, since he appears to be confused.

  • R&BAvenger

    Good that English told it like it is and how he was informed by the industry. Shame on Labour, ‘dirty politics in NZ’ is an adjective that describes opposition political parties in this country, Labour in particular.

  • CheesyEarWax

    When you have lack of talent, lack of money, lack of direction, lack of leadership, but plenty of desperation, I guess anything can come out of the Labour party.

  • balisal

    Most people in this country know that Mr English is right, and nothing Labour’s #DirtyPolitics brigade alter and decontextualise swings anything in their favour. Kiwis out there getting up earning a crust and looking after themselves know that those who are registered as longterm unemployed are either lazy, unemployable, grossly inflexible, have ideas above their station and capabilities, are unwilling or a combo of all of the aforementioned.

    Anyone stenographer boy is preaching to is a dyed-in-the-wool shop floor cloth cap. They’re certainly not going to convert the hardworking and mindful voter to switch sides with this methodology. On the contrary their faux- offended whinging will ensure National keep rising like cream in the polls, while they’re stuck in last century’s sour milk of their own making.

  • George Carter

    I totally agree with Bill’s comments even if they were taken out of context. I also agree that there’s nothing more pleasant that watching Labour repeatedly shoot themselves int he foot. However as much as these are great popcorn moments I am concerned about the state of politics in general in New Zealand thanks primarily to MMP.

    National are fortunate in that they tend to attract people with successful business backgrounds or an understanding of the business/western world, capitalists if you will. Labour et al tend to fill their ranks with idealists and theorists with little understanding of the way the world works. Not that ideals are a bad thing but when you haven’t had to sell those ideals to the public and get voted in on the back of that, you aren’t fit to represent said public! Whilst MMP exists, that acid test of public exposure isn’t essential to be in parliament (list MP’s) and as such Labours ranks continue to look as desperate as they are!

    Sorry if I went off topic!

  • Caprice

    This story just highlights the need to read WhaleOil on a daily basis – to counteract the news media feeding us what they want us to hear.
    During the time I was listening to the radio (RNZ national) yesterday, I only got to hear the doctored version of what Bill English said.
    RNZ’s media watch program goes a little way toward unpicking the news week as well though, to be fair. It is always interesting to hear that a big ‘news’ story during the week was in fact a well orchestrated advertising campaign etc. etc.

    • JustTinkering

      And did you hear the breathless exclamations from dopey Duncan Garner yesterday? Duncan trying again to make a story out of nothing – putting his own biased spin on every aspect.

  • The Veteran

    Iain Lees-Galloway … the poor little rich boy from King’s College. I thought they taught him better than that but suspect he wasn’t listening. Against Charter Schools too … no wonder his parents moved out of the Palmerston North electorate so as to avoid having to vote for him (his story, not mine).

  • Keanne Lawrence

    Labour really are radical or more correctly attempting a radical move by changing the accepted position of the horse. They have now decided to put it at the back of the cart.
    With so much of their ideas coming out of a cloth cap via the Media party or more scary the social media Lees-Galloway has decided to get ahead of the pack buoyed by the gullibility of the LCD.
    The Media party set the tone by chicken picking sound bites to try and make into news as they see it and now there is the LG version of the news as he makes a clumsy attempt to be noticed. Earlier in the week he snuck out from behind Robbo’s skirt as they gave us their Abbott & Costello antics at question time.
    The gaps in the “quotation” offered by the comedy pair were filled in by Bill English since he always stands by his statements “in the context they were given.”
    Readership and viewers rejecting the majority of the Media party’s drivel should have been a signal for LG but he too is guided best by hindsight like his party. Now we have individual members attempting their own version of dirty politics descending lower than the gutter politicking of the last few years.

  • localnews

    Isnt it nice to see Bill English talking like a real person. Maybe this will give him confidence to do it more often. There is little point worrying about offending people who are never going to support him. If he looks around he might find some more obvious problems that need to be voiced

  • WBC

    “The question Labour needs to ask themselves: Will this get us more votes? If not, then don’t do it.”

    Let’s just hope they don’t learn from that! It would seriously reduce the entertainment that they give us all! And of course it’s always good to see them aiming to break the 25% party and 5% leader barriers.

  • Old Dig

    I am beginning to think that Labour are actually some sort of social experiment to test how badly you can run a political party before it implodes.

  • Dumrse

    The union has got a real hold of the puppet this week. They must be making him squirm something shocking.