Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Taking the stage in Mount Albert

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  • nzlemming, in reply to Sacha,

    Though who in their right mind would choose Melissa Lee as a local representative over Jacinda Ardern?

    People who don't like 'criminals from south Auckland' in their suburbs...

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2932 posts Report Reply

  • Mr Mark, in reply to Jason Kemp,

    "I wonder how many of those voters were former Labour Party voters"

    Yep, I think that's right, Jason - quite a few will be, given Labour's 25 point decline in the seat since 2005 and the Greens 13 point rise (not taking into account boundary changes). So, I'd guess up to half of current Green supporters in Mt Albert are former Labour voters.

    Certainly a degree of unpredictability - but, with the different dynamics of a one-vote By-Election (and the unprecedented situation of no National candidate), I'm pretty sure that significantly fewer than 73% of Greens will go Ardern.

    Varying turnout will also play a crucial role. Who can motivate their supporters to get out and vote ?

    Ardern will certainly win - but the question is by how much ?

    Wellington • Since Dec 2009 • 128 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Mr Mark,

    This in a seat that Farrar has already loudly proclaimed one of “Labour’s” safest (in fact, it’s a Shearer stronghold, not a Labour one. Labour received just 29% of the Party-Vote at the last Election).

    So you can imagine the media headlines. Potentially, at least, an own goal for the Left. Hope not, but fear it may be.

    I think Labour knows that, but they see a way forward in how Roskill went – which is traditional, door-knocking campaigning.

    I also think that there will be National/Shearer voters who will take the same approach to Ardern. The problem Labour has to address in Auckland for the general election is persuading those voters to confer their party votes too.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to nzlemming,

    Heh. Driving up that clogged motorway near the airport, climbing in their white sash windows. #nostalgia

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to nzlemming,

    desultory

    great description of the guy in general.
    #lazy #coddled

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Mr Mark,

    I'm pretty sure that significantly fewer than 73% of Greens will go Ardern

    Doesn't that also depend on how well the Greens make 'vote for our party at the general election' their main message as they knock doors and address meetings? They are used to campaigning in electorates for the party vote rather than the candidate one, after all. And surely not that dim, tactically.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I think Labour knows that, but they see a way forward in how Roskill went – which is traditional, door-knocking campaigning.

    Sure, and practically this is a perfect time and place to be doing some stress testing on a general election ground game. Turn Mount Albert into a giant focus ground, and at least get some bang for your time and effort.

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

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    Flowery is not compelling. Speaking clearly in a way that connects with what is important to voters is a basic political competence. Somebody had better be coaching Little to repeat key points and themes whether or not it feels natural to his cautious lawyerly self to do so.

    Stop him immediately qualifying his answers in interviews is the main one, I reckon.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Sure, and practically this is a perfect time and place to be doing some stress testing on a general election ground game. Turn Mount Albert into a giant focus ground, and at least get some bang for your time and effort.

    Yes, and see it as a next step from Roskill and the local body campaign (the latter undertaken jointly with the Greens, of course). I do think they perceive that they're onto something, doubtless to their relief.

    And while I realise that there are local claims on the nomination, I'd be delighted to see Deborah Russell standing for Labour in New Lynn. There are many Auckland electorates outside the South that don't and won't fancy Labour, but there are quite a few they can get momentum in.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Stop him immediately qualifying his answers in interviews is the main one, I reckon.

    Not only that, but I'd say a couple of unforced errors from Little has been fudging details, timelines and costings for the sake of a snappy soundbite.... then getting pissy at journalists who read the fine print and asked questions about it. If nothing else, Labour should remember when "explaining is losing" worked very well for them. I'm pretty sure Don Brash does. Fairly or not, "flip-flopper" is a political stain that's really hard to get out.

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

  • Ben Austin,

    It does seem like it could be, along with the Mt Roskill by-election, be a good stress test for the Party for later in the year, as well as as a good training opportunity. However the downside of course is that they probably are struggling for money and perhaps would rather spend it on the General.

    It is also interesting to contrast electioneering styles. I don't recall ever being door knocked in NZ, although I do remember my father and his friends doing it as late as the early 90s down south. I guess this isn't a thing parties really do anymore?

    Whereas in London there is a huge amount of election canvassing, then Get Out the Vote work done on election day by all parties that have the means to do such things (£, volunteers etc). Lib Dem friends say that they can expect to win a by- election if they can get a thousand volunteers on the day (which is obviously not something they can usually do but almost did for their recent Richmond win)

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 1022 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace, in reply to Ben Austin,

    Door knocking is definitely still done, as well as ringing and street corner meetings. Talking to real people about their issues is still very important for winning elections at the local level. Grant Robertson has always had a large team (of mainly young people) helping him do these things and so did Justin Lester in his mayoral campaign last year.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3214 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to nzlemming,

    Wrong. Protest voting has proved to be ineffective.

    Uh huh. So all those people who couldn't be bothered protest voting against Trump have been vindicated??

    It's not about protest voting. It's about deciding that for all their faults (Greens believing in fake medicine, Labour believing in OWGs) they are still better than the alternative. Because things like our education system and health system and welfare system and environment really can't cope with another 3 years of degradation. Because cutting the resources of government is not what we want. Those aren't protests, those are positive decisions. Between Green and Labour, those values will be restored so damn well vote for them - even if you don't like some of their failings.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    I'm kind of curious to see how Mt Albert votes. It is no longer a working class suburb by any stretch of the imagination. The families in the suburb are a very wide range now. Somehow Labour and The Greens have to capture the imagination of the people in the remaining state houses, the people with monster mortgages and the very rich on the slopes of Mt Albert.

    It really will take some sophisticated messaging to gather all those families into a solid party vote for the election later this year. Not just door knocking but listening and feeding back what is heard into policies.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    OWGs

    Old White Guys?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Sacha,

    OWGs

    Old White Guys?

    Yup. Sorry too used to the acronym being used in science.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Uh huh. So all those people who couldn't be bothered protest voting against Trump have been vindicated??

    Eh? That's got bugger all to do with it, Trev. People did protest-vote against Trump - almost 3 million more than actually voted for him. And despite those numbers, substantially fewer people voted than in the last election. Those that didn't vote Democrat did it because a) they thought Clinton had it in the bag, or b) they couldn't bring themselves to vote for Clinton. Clinton presented no vision to inspire them to vote FOR her, counting on people to vote against a proven liar and fraud. Look how well that turned out.

    It's not about protest voting. It's about deciding that for all their faults ... they are still better than the alternative. ... Those aren't protests, those are positive decisions.

    Which is what I said but not what you said. That was:

    It's not about voting Little into power - it's all about voting National and ACT out of power.

    Either mean what you say or say what you mean. Voting National and Act out of power is protest voting. You have to vote for Labour/Greens to do it, but it's a protest against the status quo. We thought it was going to happen in 2014, especially with #dirtypolitics and it didn't, because not enough people were inspired/convinced by Labour (essentially) to vote for them. To get enough people to vote FOR Labour/Greens will require a vision that is easily explained to the electorate, not a mishmash of self-contradictory half policies and factional ructions that we were exposed to then.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2932 posts Report Reply

  • Lynn Yum, in reply to Ben Austin,

    I don’t recall ever being door knocked in NZ, although I do remember my father and his friends doing it as late as the early 90s down south. I guess this isn’t a thing parties really do anymore?

    I once had a Greens electorate candidate in the 00s knocking on my door in Auckland. She wasn't really advocating for herself but the party. We had a nice policy discussion, and my view of the Greens infinitely improved because of that (even though I still didn't vote for them that election...) And we had a Labour "meet the candidate" meeting in a neighbour's house in the 00s as well. It definitely wasn't done in the last two elections in my electorate.

    But in the last local council election the candidates did appear in the mall talking to people. (And the ONLY time I see them openly talking to the community...)

    Personally I like face-to-face meeting, because it is a true test of wit and grit. When you are on the spot you usually fall back to your deeply held principles, and that is what the face-to-face meeting with the candidates will show. Much more than carefully choreographed media event or policy statements. (And that IMO is exactly why some politicians just don't want to meet-and-greet...)

    Auckland • Since Dec 2016 • 38 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to nzlemming,

    Me

    It's not about protest voting. It's about deciding that for all their faults ... they are still better than the alternative. ... Those aren't protests, those are positive decisions.

    You

    Which is what I said but not what you said. That was:

    Me

    It's not about voting Little into power - it's all about voting National and ACT out of power.

    I don't like Labour's power structure or their lack of genuine policy. I can't support The Greens anti science arm. But I can see quite clearly that another 3 years of National ACT will damage NZ, perhaps beyond repair.

    It hasn't been possible to get the Labour and Green supporters out to vote FOR Labour or The Greens, their vote has steadily declined leaving the steady National ACT to take control.

    You argue that a protest vote has failed I'd argue the opposite, Labour and The Greens have lost vote steadily. The only thing Labour and The Greens can really say is they are NOT National/ACT.

    But here's the thing neither of us need to be right. So long as National ACT lose power and we can get back to a government that actually cares about the people they govern I don't care how it happens.

    I think Labour has been wishy washy on all its policy - I'm guessing because it doesn't want National to steal it and present it better than Labour can. I think The Greens have way too much woo left in their ranks to be able to provide compelling policy (with some notable exceptions). But I also know damn well that continuing the National ACT policies is even worse - so by voting against National ACT (a protest vote) I am also voting for better policies (a positive vote).

    As I said I don't care which way you sell it, just so long as you vote Labour or The Greens.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen R,

    Meeting Michael Cullen in person, back when he was Finance minister, gave me a much more favourable impression of him than I'd previously got through the media.

    (and conversely, meeting John Key before he was PM made me not trust him as far as I could kick him)

    I had a very nice chat with Annette King next to her caravan for half an hour or so, back when she was minister of Police. She would move her caravan around her electorate and drop in for chats every so often. I really appreciated it.

    ...and after that chat, I decided I wasn't going to vote Labour any more.

    so I guess actually meeting the candidates can work both ways.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2009 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    As I said I don't care which way you sell it, just so long as you vote Labour or The Greens

    My point is that the motivation to vote (or "selling") is vitally important, if you want it to actually happen.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2932 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    I think there may be some miscommunication above arising from different definitions of “protest vote”.

    I think Bart was primarily addressing the problem of eligible voters refusing to vote at all. And I agree: though it may feel like a form of protest, and though it may be a valid response if you truly believe that all of the available choices are equally bad, simply refusing to take part doesn’t really work as a “protest vote”, because it sends no unambiguous message to any particular party. If you really want to show that kind of protest, you should cast an informal vote* (but also, of course, get involved in other direct protest actions to make your voice heard and your message clear).

    [* To be clear: nobody actually reads and enumerates the contents of informal votes either – but there is I believe a useful distinction to be made between “couldn’t be arsed to vote”, and “was demonstrably ready to vote, but wasn’t impressed by the options”. If you don't vote at all, you're placed in the first category by default.]

    But, as Bart said: as long as you don’t believe everyone is equally bad, then voting for the least worst (however distasteful that may feel) still allows the possibility of some improvement.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1923 posts Report Reply

  • kiwicmc, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Hey Bart, could you explain a little of what you mean when you say "the Greens anti-science arm"?

    I see this in their current (2011) science policy:

    The Greens see many potential benefits from the technologies derived from the science of genetics. We support the development of genetic technologies when they are:
    10. Properly contained in a laboratory.
    11. Subject to case by case approval, including ethical screening and a proper
    application of the precautionary principle.
    12. Not applied to food production.

    Is 12 your beef? or do you think they are more against genetic research then this policy implies?

    Auckland, New Zealand • Since May 2008 • 88 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to kiwicmc,

    Hey Bart, could you explain a little of what you mean when you say "the Greens anti-science arm"?

    Is 12 your beef?

    It would be a massive derail. Short answer is yes. Longer and derailing answer below which most can ignore. Even longer discussion requires coffee and doughnuts :).



    Basically all their policies with respect to fake medicines, organics, and in particular their anti GMO policies. While the documents look reasonable on the face of it the actual application (and intent) is to prevent GMOs being developed by New Zealand scientists. I've been around this argument multiple times, the arguments almost always go off track but it simply is clear that the intent is to prevent GMO products and research and not enable this science.

    Contrast that with their attitudes to clean energy, which is positive and embracing of science and you quickly see that The Green approach to biology is hostile and fearful of the science and the scientists doing the work.

    Even weirder is the contrast with The Greens policies around alternative medicines and organics where they are happy to embrace extremely dodgy data in support of alternative medicines and herbal supplements etc and ignore issues around organic production.

    While I LOVE many of The Greens' policies; transport; energy; environment; inclusion; and others, I really struggle with their approach around biology. It is deeply frustrating to me and many of my colleagues because frankly most of us scientists are rabid lefty geenies ourselves. But as I said above even though they aren't perfect - on balance they are better than the alternative National ACT policies.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

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