Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Decision 2014: Where to watch and listen

41 Responses

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  • steven crawford, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    This lot will be gone by lunchtime, I may have to skip lunch for a few months but it will be worth it when the inquirers finish their task and hold the man’s feet to the last glowing embers of justice

    John Key would need to be seen eating dead baby’s, along with the television commanding the audience to feel sick, for any cute little inquiry is going mean anything.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4411 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    Cockneyed rebel...

    ...the Alf show, about the annoying alien, where he revealed to his host family that all along he’d been nothing but a sock, onto which they’d projected their fantasies. Initially they refused to believe him, but once he insisted they turned nasty, even stomping on him for having deluded them.

    We don't do things
    by 'alfs round here
    mate...

    100% all the way
    the Ultra-V, that's us
    straight up!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7943 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I’m sure the “blame the media” meme is going to be very tempting for large sections of the left

    Agreed. There is an element of frustration in that. But like it or not the media reflected the actual voters. As amazed as some of us were that the media did not attack JK for his deceptions, they essentially replicated what the voters on the night thought as well.

    This Labour party failed. It will take some time to understand entirely why but arguing anything other than they failed is pointless and a waste of energy.

    For me there are a couple of key issues they disappointed me with:

    The relationship with The Greens was toxic to Labour, too many people I spoke with were simply afraid to vote Labour. Rightly or wrongly they perceived The Greens as dangerous to NZs economy. Somehow Labour has to sort out an environmental policy that stands alone independent of The Greens so that those voters can feel they can vote for the environment by voting Labour without the negative perceptions around The Greens.

    The parliamentary team in Labour is hopeless and that needs to change. Too often there were different and irrelevant messages coming from MPs. Too often the spokesperson had no ready answer. They were bad and it showed. Too often it was Julie Anne Genter's transport policy that made sense and too often Russel Norman said it better than any Labour MP. It left a confusion in many people as to what Labour was doing in parliament, what issues were they fighting for, what mattered?

    They need to get out and understand what people in my electorate (Roskill) were actually trying to say when they voted for Goff but against Labour. There is a message there that Cunliffe and the party leadership is not hearing.

    They failed utterly to attack the policies of National, where were the messages reminding people that this National government sold our assets, and asking what will be sold next, ACC, Pharmac? Whoever came up with the mild and meek "vote positive" failed and they need to be sent to the back of the class.

    And yeah a lot of the above is all about perception, you can argue blind that I'm actually wrong about those issues but the problem is people perceived something to be wrong about Labour. Ignore that perception again and Labour become just another minor party again - like it is for the next three years.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    They need to get out and understand what people in my electorate (Roskill) were actually trying to say when they voted for Goff but against Labour. There is a message there that Cunliffe and the party leadership is not hearing.

    Jeanette Fitzsimons made a good point on Nat Radio earlier: When things are uncertain (even if you’re doing reasonably well) a lot of people instincts are small-c conservative. I'd argue Labour understood and played into that skilfully in both '02 & '05 and tapped into a pool of voters who weren't tribal Labour but were either ticking along OK or the alternatives scared the crap out of them.

    Did Labour run a “change” campaign (like '84 or '99) when there was no real stomach for it? And I’d argue, a failure to clearly provide both the ask and the answer – the discontent and the alternative.

    There’s plenty of arguments both pro and contra that thesis, but it’s worth thinking about.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Lyall, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    They need to get out and understand what people in my electorate (Roskill) were actually trying to say when they voted for Goff but against Labour. There is a message there that Cunliffe and the party leadership is not hearing.

    I really wouldn't read too much into the local votes. In most electorates it makes no real difference as they are pretty safe. In most cases the Labour and National candidates will attract most of the minor party voters not Labour supporters voting for the Labour candidate and then another party.

    I'm in Mt Roskill too and I knew that Goff was always going to win no matter who I voted for. I was even joking with people I'd vote for Minto.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2007 • 58 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Simon Lyall,

    I really wouldn’t read too much into the local votes.

    True, but the pattern was replicate in several electorates. Ignore at your peril.

    I’m in Mt Roskill too and I knew that Goff was always going to win no matter who I voted for. I was even joking with people I’d vote for Minto.

    But that isn't what happened or what I'm confused about. They voted for Goff, the landslide always-going-to-win candidate even though their individual vote would make no difference to the candidate race.

    But at the same time they gave their party vote to National. Something that really would have an effect on the outcome of the election.

    I don't know why and I don't think the Labour party know why.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson,

    Rightly or wrongly they perceived The Greens as dangerous to NZs economy. Somehow Labour has to sort out an environmental policy that stands alone independent of The Greens so that those voters can feel they can vote for the environment by voting Labour without the negative perceptions around The Greens.

    So it's not the media, but people believe the Greens are economically irresponsible so it's their fault? That doesn't work out.
    And Labour attacking the Greens hasn't yet worked for them, so I don't think doubling down on it is a great plan of action.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 294 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    I don’t know why and I don’t think the Labour party know why.

    So it seems.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    I was even joking with people I’d vote for Minto.

    I don’t get the joke. Maybe its because I attended protest marches around Eden park during the 1980s in which Minto played a huge part in organizing.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4411 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to steven crawford,

    I don’t get the joke. Maybe its because I attended protest marches around Eden park during the 1980s in which Minto played a huge part in organizing.

    Yup, if I was in Roskill I'd have given him my vote, just for the novelty value of being able to say what a dude I think he is that way. To be able to simultaneously signal that I think Goff is a cock is just a bonus. I'm still paying for his influence on NZ even now. I've shelled out many thousands over the last few years to gain some skills, and I'm going to have to do it again for both of my kids.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • mccx, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    But like it or not the media reflected the actual voters.

    To an extent the media did reflect the public's interest, but arguing that means ignoring the difference between the public's interest and the public interest and allowing the media to avoid any responsibility for pursuing the latter.

    One media influence I find particularly worrisome is how opinion polling appears to drive voting preference as much as reflect it. The public may have treated this election campaign as a foregone conclusion or wanted to 'be on the winning side' – neither of which really sit with the consideration that is supposed to drive voting.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2012 • 36 posts Report Reply

  • tussock, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    The relationship with The Greens was toxic to Labour, too many people I spoke with were simply afraid to vote Labour. Rightly or wrongly they perceived The Greens as dangerous to NZs economy.

    Uh, you're talking to National party voters? That's their attack ad. "NZ CAN'T AFFORD A LABOUR/GREENS GOVERNMENT". Lies and more lies, but they speak them with a clear voice.

    Labour has a very simple counter to that every time: Party vote Labour is less seats for the Greens, and a better chance to pass policy without them.

    Since Nov 2006 • 609 posts Report Reply

  • tussock, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    But at the same time they gave their party vote to National.

    There's a lot of people in every seat vote for a Red candidate and the Blue party, or a Blue candidate and the Red party. Believe it or not, sometimes people who like one party also like a person from the other party.

    Clear your confusion: it's not Goff voters voting National, it's National voters voting Goff. Because they like him. Just that simple. The problem is there's not enough Labour voters, not who it is puts Goff in each time.

    Since Nov 2006 • 609 posts Report Reply

  • tussock, in reply to mccx,

    One media influence I find particularly worrisome is how opinion polling appears to drive voting preference as much as reflect it.

    There's a huge bunch of bullshit talked around individual poll results, the media over-play the ups and downs, but the trends are real and have some meaning behind them. They sometimes get out of touch, drift into bias, but the trends stay real and they obviously corrected for bias well this time through. You just can't randomly ring up a thousand people over and over again and keep getting incorrect answers.

    One thing they've been hearing for the last 18 months is more and more Labour voters (and a few Greens) becoming "undecided". National's steady rise in the polls from mid-2013 to mid-2014 reflected a real change in the electorate.

    A big crowd of those people picked New Zealand First. A good few went back to Labour. A lot went to the Conservatives. Most of them probably stayed home. That's who those people are, socially conservative, authoritarian, centre-left voters. The ones who really do think those spies are obviously only attacking criminals and they have nothing to hide.


    Secretly, the ones Labour lost with the section 59 repeal, because they're still hitting their kids for Jesus. Even though National voted for it, and those people aren't stupid and won't vote National either. It's probably a conversation Labour needs to have, in public, that they don't think those people are criminals, and respect the love they have for their kids, that the law was just to stop a few really bad people from hurting their kids very badly, which it has.

    Since Nov 2006 • 609 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I'm not convinced that polls drive the results. Some evidence to that effect would be good, although it's actually hard to see what kind of evidence would be effective.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • mccx, in reply to tussock,

    You just can’t randomly ring up a thousand people over and over again and keep getting incorrect answers.

    That's not what I meant. I don't mean that during the act of being polled people's minds are changed (though push polling may exist) or that the results are incorrect, I mean that the existence of opinion poll results as a news item that is seen by the public as something pre-existing and fixed will influence people's opinions (and voting behaviour.)

    And Ben, don't take my word for it – it's not my area of expertise, but it's a known thing in political science and sociology. It's variously called the "bandwagon effect" or the "performativity" of opinion polling. I could some provide academic citations/abstracts though I doubt that alone is of much use.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2012 • 36 posts Report Reply

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