The enemy within


Anyone wondering about recent poll results which show Labour still failing to make any traction will find part of the answer in Charles Chauvel’s valedictory speech (at 17:45):

. . . it is unproductive to keep trying to locate and exclude the supposed enemy within. Instead, in order to avoid history repeating, it is time for an honest, open, and overdue assessment of why the 2011 campaign produced Labour’s worst ever electoral result. Those responsible for it should make dignified exits, and all the undoubted talent and diversity of the caucus should be included in the shadow Cabinet. To put it another way, in Gough Whitlam’s immortal words, the party must have both its wings to fly. . .

Why would voters trust a party when a member admits it’s searching for an enemy within and riven by factions which means it can’t trust itself?

Unions good, commerce bad?


Labour’s attempt to sabotage the Lobbying Disclosure Bill is bad enough, it’s reasons for doing so are even worse:

The Labour Party wants to exempt trade unions from a bill to regulate lobbyists, saying unions are “less sinister” than professional lobbyists and corporates.

That is very much a matter of opinion.

The bill would cover anybody paid to lobby MPs, whether it was for an organisation such as Greenpeace or a trade union, a company such as SkyCity or as a professional lobbyist.

However, Mr Chauvel said it was too broad and the exemption was being sought because Labour believed it should apply only to groups or people who lobbied for a commercial purpose rather than not-for-profit groups. . .

“When trade unions came up, it seemed to me that they fell on the not- quite-so-sinister-and-behind-the-scenes side of things.”

He said corporate lobbying had the power to change policy, and was often done on the quiet.

“There is a big public interest in knowing what corporates are doing because they can afford heft lobbying and hospitality, and research and all the rest,” Mr Chauvel said.

And unions which donate at least tens of thousands of dollars to Labour, to which some of them are affiliated, have no heft and don’t do anything which some might regard as sinister and behind the scenes? They have no influence on policy and do nothing on the quiet?

Is it really that simple on Planet Labour – unions good, commerce bad?

Oh dear, that someone would give Chauvel the gift to see himself – and unions as others see them.






Labour gives farmers yet another reason to vote National


Labour’s high country, agricultural and water policies gave farmers plenty of reasons to vote National.

Federated Farmers water spokesman  Ian Mackenzie, called them a hat trick of ill-conceived policies and he was right.

And now they’ve added a fourth – they’re going to start taxing animal emissions through the Emissions Trading Scheme in 2013.

Labour’s environment spokesperson Charles Chauvel says it is wrong that agriculture has been excluded from the Emissions Trading Scheme.

He admits it won’t be a popular policy with farmers, but says it is time the sector bore some of the costs of the ETS.

Just like they mistakenly think we don’t pay tax, they obviously don’t think we use power or fuel, both of which are subject to ETS surcharges.

What we don’t pay is a tax on animal emissions because there is very little, if anything, which we can do to lower them.

Farmers are paying for research into ways in which animal emissions could be reduced. But until this research results in practical and affordable ways for us to stop animals burping and farting any ETS charges are just another tax which will add to our costs without doing any good.

National has confirmed that it will not commit to bringing animal emissions into the ETS until our trading partners do it too.

It won’t be imposing the tens of thousands of dollars on each farm that Labour is through its capital gains tax, ACC levies, increase in the minimum wage and other added costs its 1970s employment policies will impose either.

It’s about trust


In 2008 Labour tried to convince voters the election was about trust.

They were attempting to convince us that they could be trusted but John Key and National couldn’t.

Their record (pledge card, Electoral Finance Act, support for Winston Peters and Phillip Field . . . ) and their inability to find any dirt on Key foiled that plan.

This term National has worked hard to show it can be trusted, even in the face of financial and natural disasters beyond its control which provided the opportunity to be much tougher.

Labour however, has been inept in opposition which means it can’t be trusted in government.

One reason for its poor performance has been the propensity for its MPs to let down themselves and their party.

Even now, on the eve of an election when staying on message and keeping out of the news for the wrong things is so important, MP Charles Chauvel has been caught out.

On Friday Kiwiblog showed an email he’d written with a letter to the editor for a lawyer to send to the Dominion Post and today he has evidence that Chauvel breached standing orders with a media release which aimed to make him look good.

The first is stupid, the second is a contempt of standing orders both provide yet more reasons not to trust Labour and Kiwiblog is promising part III of this tomorrow.

Lines of the week


Those in the public eye must choose carefully how they get into the public’s ear – as many a famous throat well knows. . .


Them? Them!? You mean ordinary people? The masses? A man of the left shouldn’t get hoity-toity about the hoi polloi, Charlie boy. . .


It’s unwise for any politician – and particularly one of our modern micro-Marxists – to be so offended by a close encounter with the proletariat – or, in this case, the proletariat’s children. . .


The point – the only point – is that there is no point. There’s no story here. . .


This was a beat-up, as surely as the Sunday Star-Times ‘omigosh, we’re not ready for the Rugby World Cup bomb scare story’ was, if you will, a blow-up. . .

They’re all from Jim Hopkins and you can read the full column here.

Newsflash – MP’s rude – UPDATED


And the finalists for the inability to distinguish between news and nonsense category of the Mediocres are: the newspapers, radio stations and televisions channels which covered the non-news that an MP was rude.

Why am I not including bloggers in that roll of dishonour? Because blogs are the personal views of the people who write them, most don’t try to be balanced, some break news, some are written by journalists but they are not main stream media. 

The MSM is supposed to be objective and to differentiate between what’s in the public interest and what the public might be interested in.

If journalists have to cover stories like this they could at least do it properly and give their readers/listeners/viewers some idea of what the children were doing and how loudly they were doing it when Charles Chauvel was moved to wish they’d shut up.

It would have been better still if that idea had been an objective one rather than a did-didn’t exchange by Chauvel and the children’s mother.

From any of the reports I’ve seen it’s impossible to know how disruptive the chidlren were and if Chauvel’s comment was just a quiet aside to his partner or whether he deliberately said it loudly enough for the parents to hear in the hope they’d quieten the kids.

But whatever the truth is it’s not something which needs or should be covered by the MSM.

They should concentrate on news and leave the nonsense to bloggers who are having a field day:

Kiwiblog posts on winning over the voters one at a time

Keeping Stock thinks Chauvel should stop digging

Roarprawn says stfu noisy kids are not okay

Cactus Kate writes Charles Chauvel chucks a Galdys

Dim Posts posts on Nemesis :

I hope the Speaker takes another look at charging rent for the press gallery offices, just to see Lockwood try and keep a straight face when the political media insists it ‘fulfils a vital role in our democracy’.

Oswald Bastable posts on the subject of MPs and kids on aircraft

Whaleoil says Charlie Shovel hates kids pisses off blogger

At Pundit Andrew Geddis writes I love the news it’s my favourite show

PM of NZ posts Move along, nothing to see here

Fairfacts Media reckons he’s only a bit of a Charlie

Crusader Rabbit says so control them

Alf Grumble reckons that’s what comes with flying your family to see pixies you end up in flak

And Poneke justifiably despairs with Stop the presses Finance Ministers wife buying junk food for her children in Thorndon New World


Andrei posts on yesterday’s storm in a tea cup at NZ Conservative.

Kiwiblog has more thoughts on the Chauvel story

Whaleoil writes keep digging Charlie

and Brian Edwards scores parents nil, media nil MP 8 out of 10

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