David Shearer chats Stuff

David Shearer has just done a live online chat on Stuff. Good effort from him, up front on a number of questions, shows a sense of humour.

To the point and on to it:

Do you believe New Zealand should become a republic?

Yes. It’s not our top priority but I’d like to see NZ stand up for itself in the world and have its own flag without someone else’s in the top left hand corner.

The “what will he do in his second week?” answer:

What would your first priority be if you were prime minister?

Resetting the economy along the lines we’ve spoken about in terms of creating an innovative, creative environment for business and addressing the big economic issues we have spoken about on tax, superannuation, monetary policy, savings. We need to do that quickly so that the benefits can be felt. The next is to address inequality.

The “I don’t don’t what we’d do but it would be better” answer:

You complain about the government not creating jobs. Do you honestly believe that Labour could do better? With all that is going on in the world how would Labour create more jobs? NZ seems to be in a much better position then most countries around the world.

Labour did create more jobs in its time in office and even going into the recession, it’s focus was on creating jobs. That’s something this Government hasn’t focused on. But new jobs will come from stimulating innovative businesses and high-quality manufacturing.

Avoided the question:

Why has Labour submitted a proposed ammendment to the lobbying disclosure bill excluding unions?

The lobbying bill has got some tricky issues in it and unfortunately taken to its logical conclusion would have to declare everyone who came to see me in my electorate office as a possible lobbyist and I”m sure thats not the original intention of the bill.

Who could disagree with this? Ok, intervention is tricky, rights versus protection, but should be cross-party.

What will you do to stop the growing cases of child abuse in New Zealand?

I think the recent coroner’s report has got some good suggestions in it. We need to be more actively interventionist where we think children are at risk. We are also prepared to work together with National and have offered three times to do so. We think there needs to be a cross party consensus on this important issue.

None the wiser:

what’s labour going to do about our justice system. . we need tougher punishments for child abuse and neglect and murder and removal of the double jeopardy law. 

There’s always a balance between tougher sentences for the worst criminals and making sure that our prison population just doesn’t get bigger so that more people come out as better criminals.

None the wiser again:

Do you believe that NZ has a genuine problem with long-term voluntary welfare dependency? Or that NZers will choose to work, if real jobs exist? Should welfare reforms include punitive measures to push people off welfare?

All NZders have rights so if they need welfare support it is available. But the responsibility is on those people to move into jobs when they are able to. That’s the social contract we have in NZ.

Fair enough:

Were you surprised by the latest poll that said people didn’t feel they knew you?

No not really. New Zealanders take time to get to know people and to trust them. The onus is on me to get out there and earn their trust and their support.

A good point with humour:

What are you going to do to raise your profile? most nzers say they know nothing about you.

Maybe more people should read the Fairfax Stuff online chat!

Good effort overall, some politician’s waffle and non-answers (to be expected), but also good and interesting responses.



  1. Darryl

     /  30th July 2012

    I have no desires to see David Shearer as our Prime Minister. I wondered if he was still the Labour Party leader, as I had not seen him, and when I did, all I heard him do was mumble and stutter. Not a good look at all. I do not like the policies of Planet Labour, they seem to think they can spend spend spend and Tax Tax Tax and everything will be alright. The Labour Party do this so they can keep the major Welfare projects on the go. I am right against Labour encouraging their core voters to be reliant on the government, it means these folk will never get ahead in life. I am very supportive of John Key/National and applaud their Welfare Reform, the National Party are doing a good job during very difficult economic times. Sorry I don’t see David Shearer up to the job of PM.

  2. Darryl

     /  30th July 2012

    PS: NO! to a republic.