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Incite Politics

Why taking heads is required in politics

The current Labour government cannot buy a good news story. They are lurching from disaster to disaster, and mainly through inept political management. This inept behaviour is reinforced by the unwillingness to sack anyone for mistakes, omissions or basic stupidity.

Jacinda Adern has set the tone for the government. It is a new friendly type of government that does not sack anyone for the kind of thing that would normally be a sackable offence. This is a fundamental part of Jacinda’s brand, but she is being let down by the typical stupid politicians and backroom operators that make mistakes . . .

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Incite Politics

What to watch for the US midterms

Conor Lamb, a Democrat, is narrowly ahead in the Pennsylvania 18 congressional district special election, which is something of an indicator for the mid term elections in November. PA18 was a district that Trump won by 20%, so there was a massive swing to the Democrats, whether they hold the seat or not.

This kind of result gives commentators license to go completely over the top and talk about how the Democrats are going to take control of the Congress in November, and start impeaching Trump in January. Rather than buy into the hype it is far more prudent to . . .

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Incite Politics

New Zealand’s problems

Instinctively there is a lot to like with using Social Investment as a model to appeal to middle New Zealand. It displays a softer approach to improving the lives of the less fortunate, and in a manner that will not cause the chattering classes to attack National with much venom . . .

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Incite Politics

How National show they are ready to govern

As National looks to move from opposition to government it needs to avoid the simple mistakes opposition parties often make in opposition. They start by thinking the voters are wrong not to re-elect them. When the voters realise their mistake the opposition party will be returned to government. This never happens and is not worth relying on as a strategy to get back into government . . .

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Incite Politics

Do National have a vision?

National replaced the dull & dour Bill English with the enigmatic Simon Bridges. Bridges is enigmatic because no one really knows what he stands for and what his vision is.

As a party National is supposed to stand for free markets, individual responsibility and hard work. Their track record, except when Ruth Richardson was finance minister and Don Brash was leader, suggests that these values are nowhere near as important as obtaining and retaining power for the current leadership team . . .

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Incite Politics

Review: 538 on the gun debate

As a gun owner I am often asked whether anything can be done in the US about guns, and I am not sure there is a good answer. The combination of partisanship, enthusiasm from the pro gun lobby and the ruthlessly efficient NRA means that it is not easy to see a route for legislative change.

Fivethirtyeight’s podcast gives the best recent analysis of the problem facing gun reform proponents, analyses the data, the debate itself, and what possibly could happen. It is well worth listening to if you want to understand how difficult gun reform is going to . . .

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Incite Politics

The abject failure of Bill English to win the coalition negotiations

Bill English’s political demise was entirely predictable, and predictable from the moment Winston Peters chose to go with Labour. National supporters who rage against Winston or the current government need to stop being stupid.

The Labour lead government is a clear case of Bill English failing. Whatever is said about the negotiations English’s stupidity left the results in doubt. He failed to have a plan for if Winston was holding the balance of power and he got what he deserved when Winston went with Labour and ended his career . . .

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The mugs & amateurs known as Bill English’s successor

Leadership elections in National are simple. You need half of caucus plus one to vote for you to win. This is a scenario you can plan for many, many years in advance, even if you do not know the exact timing for the leadership election. Timing does not matter much, campaigning over a long period of time does.

Before the first caucus meeting of the year there was chatter that Bill may be rolled. This quickly turned to Bill would not be rolled and no one was challenging him . . .

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Incite Politics

Simon Lusk: What will replace neoliberalism?

Over the past several years I have asked a number of thoughtful people what they think is going to replace neoliberalism. Many left wing thinkers blame neoliberalism for all societies ills. Rather than engage them on how they are so dismissive of a system that has made humankind far, far better off, I ask them “what will replace neoliberalism . . .

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Incite Politics

Can Bill English get to 61 votes after the 2020 election?

Bill English’s puff piece in the NZ Women’s Weekly suggests he wants to stay leader of the National Party.

At the moment there are no serious contenders to take the leadership from him, although this could change relatively quickly . . .

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