Debating Castro’s legacy

There have been contrasting responses to the news of the death of Fidel Castro. A hero who stood up to the US, or a brutal dictator? Both.

Wikipedia:

Castro is a controversial and divisive world figure.

He is decorated with various international awards, and his supporters laud him as a champion of socialism and anti-imperialism whose revolutionary regime secured Cuba’s independence from American imperialism.

Conversely, critics view him as a totalitarian dictator whose administration oversaw multiple human-rights abuses, an exodus of more than one million Cubans, and the impoverishment of the country’s economy.

Through his actions and his writings he has significantly influenced the politics of various individuals and groups across the world.

In Browning can’t understand why Cuban exiles are celebrating Castro’s death David Farrar points out  a Facebook comment of Green MP Stefan Browning.

I’m saddened by the death of Fidel Castro. He represented so significantly the battle against the worst of the forces of capitalist greed and the tyranny of oppression by the USA industrial military complex. Cuba has problems but its achievements and humanitarian reach have been significant too, especially considering the blockades and measures against it. I was disappointed by this Stuff announcement that has so much about those celebrating Fidel’s passing, when millions will be mourning.

Fans of socialism have turned a blind eye to some appalling un-democratic, authoritarian and brutal leaders.

Farrar comments:

I’m saddened by the fact an MP who has never had to live under an authoritarian dictatorship praises it so much and can’t understand who the hundreds of thousands who actually lived under it despised it.

Castro imprisoned gays, killed political opponents, tortured prisoners, censored the Internet, banned trade unions, made strikes illegal etc etc. But because he was an enemey of the US, Browning thinks he was a great guy.

Browning is attracting huge negative feedback on his Facebook page for his tears of sadness at the death of an authoritarian dictator.

Even on the left there has been a very mixed reaction to Castro’s death.

The Standard: Fidel Castro has died

Cuba is a unique place with some weaknesses and problems but with other features that are outstanding.

RIP Fidel Castro.

That was under the authorship of ‘Notices and Features’ so someone chose not to put their own name to it. There was some support and also harsh criticism of Castro’s legacy.

Martyn Bradbury: Rest in Revolution Fidel Castro

2016 has been a shit year, and it continues to find ways to keep killing off all my heroes, this time 2016 has managed to wrestle life from the Godfather of the Revolution, Fidel Castro…

…and the World lost an idea that common people could join together and fight the forces of Capitalism with weapons if need be.

A revolutionary hero just turned up at the pearly gates demanding a meeting with the workers – Rest in Revolution Fidel.

That must be the workers Castro didn’t torture or murder. It’s odd that Bradbury should suggest castro has arrived at the ‘pearly gates’ when thought that religious beliefs were backward and viewed the Roman Catholic church as ” a reactionary, pro-capitalist institution” (however Castro ended up organising a visit to Cuba by the Pope in 1998).

Is a Castro type revolution what Bradbury keeps trying to talk up for New Zealand?

Comments at The Daily Blog were also a mix of praise and condemnation.

 

 

 

Euthanasia checkpoint conspiracy theories

Martyn Bradbury has made claims about the checkpoints used to gather information from euthanasia campaigners that look absurd to me. He seems to have dreamt them up as doesn’t substantiated them at all.

The Daily Blog: So why are the NZ Police taking a sudden interest in Euthanasia campaigners?

Let me be clear.

I am anti-euthanasia. I passionately believe that if this passes, Government’s and State Agencies will not be able to help themselves in promoting Euthanasia to lesson health costs. That’s what Jenny Shipley was secretly trying to do in the 1990s and I sure as hell believe National would use it like that now.

I presume he means lessen. The rest sounds like maniacal scaremongering.

That said, what the NZ Police are doing to Euthanasia campaigners is not only outrageous, but the real reasons behind this weird abuse of power is actually a lot darker.

Falsifying a checkpoint to catch and tag members of any political group or organisation and then turn up on their doorsteps to intimidate them is extreme and barely within the law.

I agree that the abuse of the checkpoint was outrageous, and may have in fact been outside the law.

Which is what the NZ Police are testing out. The incredible search and surveillance powers bestowed upon them retrospectively by John Key for illegally spying on activists added new abilities to actively deceive and effectively entrap activists. This pro-active Policing is clearly something the NZ Police wish to test out.

This is a bloody training exercise.

The Police have selected a low grade activist group with little political clout to test out how far they can actually go with their new powers.

The checkpoint had nothing to do with new spying or search and surveillance powers.

The Police have been trying these tactics out for some time. The Urewera Raids not only used illegal spying techniques (now legal), but they engaged in GCSB  level spying equipment and agent provocateurs. They tried it on with the failed Red Devil undercover plant and more recently used ‘Mr Big’ entrapment scams.

Targeting Euthanasia campaigners is a training exercise as our Police State starts flexing its new found muscles.

Linking the Urewera raids and GCSB spying to the euthanasia checkpoint seems a rather ridiculous leap.

Remember if the new GCSB and SIS powers go through, they can deputise any agency to share their legal immunity if committing crimes. 

Good grief. I haven’t seen anyone one else talking about legal immunity over this. The Police referred themselves to the Independent Police Complaints Authority over the checkpoint.

Bradbury seems to have ended up stranded on the political outer – the maniacal left out.

Blog battle – Daily v Transport

There’s been a bit of a battle of blogs, with Martyn Bradbury at The Daily Blog having a bitter sounding rant against the Auckland orientated Transport Blog.

From BLOG WATCH: Dear Transport Blog – who’s your daddy?

The blue-green millennial sister blog to The Spinoff – Transport Blog – has reared up and attacked dear old Mike Lee again.

Bradbury has previously expressed unhappiness with The Spinoff as well.

Charming.

Likewise on Transport Blog, their push is for the gentrification of public transport so those in the wealthier suburbs can park their Prius and take public transport for the aesthetics of environmentalism.They have zero interest in free public transport so the poor and students can catch public transport because then they would have to sit next to smelly poor people.

You can’t get Blue Greeners out of their Prius if they have to sit next to smelly workers.

Like The Spinoff, it always helps to know who is actually paying the bills here, and Transport Blog seems very much in the thrall of Auckland Transport – they whose corruption knows no bounds – so there was an official information act request a couple of months ago to actually check if Auckland Transport have paid any of the lead bloggers on Transport Blog any money.

Turns out yes…

The Daily Blog is funded in part at least by the Unite Union, by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union and by the Dairy Workers Union

Bradbury then bursts into a bizarre rant.

death-of-public-broadcasting-150x150

When a dedicated and passionate lefty like Mike Lee who has fought for public transport longer than Transport Blog has been alive can be denigrated by Hipster arseholes like The Spinoff who back an ultra right neoliberal hawk like Bill fucking Ralston, you can see the full force of neoliberalisms 30 year hold on our country.

There is currently Mike Lee election advertising running on The Daily Blog.

There has always been this quiet hope with Gen Xers (my generation who are cynical towards all authority) that Millennials would spark a revolution and join us on the front line towards a better society. The Spinoff and Transport Blog lay bare that hope. The first user pays generation wants change, not for the benefit of all,  but for themselves.

Gen Xers will have to continue pushing against Boomer privilege AND Millennial FOMO if we want this City to be liveable for all Aucklanders, not just the hip and swanky.

Former Green MP (1999-2011) Keith Locke and TDB co-author tut tutted in comments:

I’ve never seen Auckland Transport Blog support the “gentrification of public transport”. There are not many gentry on the buses I catch. In general, the Transport Blog provides valuable information on public transport systems and potentials for Auckland, which is why it has a big readership.

It is perfectly ok to criticise a Spinoff writer for preferring Bill Ralston over Mike Lee in the Auckland local body elections, but I would advise against using terms like “arseholes”. Spinoff is doing some useful things, like the Table Talk political discussions it is organising jointly with Laila Harre’s Ika restaurant.

The attack on the Transport Blog came up in comments on that blog. JR posted:

Matt – I just found this posting highlighting some of the transportblog authors have received payments by Auckland Transport. Shocked!

At the end of the day (John Key phrase), it’s just not a good look to be taking money from an organisation you proclaim to be independent from without declaring it publicly. Money talks.

Patrick Reynolds responded:

Jon I can assure you 41k is a very small part of the turnover of my photography business over the past 5 years, and entirely for contracted services. If I really wanted more work from AT I can assure you I would be smarter to keep my mouth shut about their work, and not publish strident options about it under my own name.

Also the idea that I would change my views for such a small sum, (or any sum, actually) is also woefully silly. As is the idea that public organisations in AKL are shopping around to get people to blog in favour of their projects with little bits of money or small jobs.

This really is silly, while we are using the official information act to find out what AT/NZTA are up to with multiple billions of dollars of public money you guys are using it to pursue us!? And getting all excited about minor payments for work done in our day jobs.

Are you sure you are directing your attention in the most productive ways? Are we really the enemy here? And are Bright and Bradbury, with their name calling and silly labels, really the most effective people at improving the city; these people are the benchmark? These are your colleagues now?

And how about your interest in the on-bus advertising business, that’s with AT right? Is that some sort scandal too? It doesn’t bother me; but is no different from this.

Politics, blogs, elections, money, egos. And ratings?

In September 2016 Open Parachute blog rankings the Daily Blog was third with:

  • September 2016  – visits 114,700  Page views 192,098

 

  • September 2015 – visits 182,641  Page views 489,418
  • September 2014 – visits 504,304  Page views 813,779

 

Both Bradbury and The Daily Blog seem to be struggling for relevance – they have been fading, around about since Bradbury cuddled up to sugar daddy Dotcom.

 

Bradbury in Williams v Craig

One of the last witnesses to appear for Colin Craig in his defamation case with Jordan Williams was Martyn Bradbury.

The NZH senior police reporter Anna Leask from Heated scenes at Colin Craig trial:

He was called by Colin Craig’s team to give evidence about Jordan Williams, it was basically a character witness kind of thing.

He was talking about Williams and his previous experience with him, and he told the jury that Jordan had lied directly to him in the past, and described him as  one of a pack of hyenas who were intent on taking Craig down.

Bradbury was quite boisterous and colourful in court, and he referred to people who participate in this practice… as cancers and political sadists, Williams included in his opinion.

From NZH: Jordan Williams emotional and angry in court

Media commentator and blogger Martyn Bradbury was also called today to give evidence about his previous experience with Williams.

He claimed in court that in the past Williams had lied to him directly and “created a fake email identity” which he used to “send a false tip-off”.

He said Williams had embarked on a “political hit job” against Craig and described him as one of “a pack of hyenas” who had turned on the former politician.

“I thought (Craig’s pamphlet Dirty Politics and Hidden Agenda) was an appropriate response to a pack of political sadists,” Bradbury said.

I always thought the pamphlet was a bizarre, crazy way of trying to deal with things, and in no way appropriate (but I have no idea whether it may constitute defamation).

He told the jury he thought Williams and a number of others he felt were involved in the practice of dirty politics in New Zealand were “a cancer on the body politics in this
country”.

Bradbury was asked what he thought the defamation trial was about and replied: “an angry fight between two people who don’t like each other much”.

There may well be some anger and indignation involved, but some of those who get into political activism seem to see it as a bit of a game to be won at any cost.

Under cross-examination Williams’ lawyer Peter Knight grilled Bradbury about his posting blogs that had “derogatory, horrible and sleazy” comments about his client before he gave evidence.

He asked Bradbury if he thought it appropriate to “attack” Williams online given he was coming to court to give evidence against him days later.

I said last week that I thought it was quite unwise for Bradbury to post about the case he was to be a witness in.

His derogatory, horrible and sleazy” comments will have taken the edge somewhat off his accusations of others being dirty.

Bradbury admitted posting about the trial last week but said he had not posted about his own evidence.

“Did you think it was appropriate given you were going to be a witness, to do that?” said McKnight.

“My understanding was that I could not talk about my evidence, I didn’t realise I couldn’t blog about breaking news,” he said.

Craig’s team should have made it clear to Bradbury in advance of the Court sitting what was appropriate and what wasn’t.

And Bradbury should have known better or should have found out what he could do and what he shouldn’t do. He seems to have difficulty being discrete at times, and in this case may have damaged his credibility in court.

UPDATE: More from Stuff on Bradbury’s appearance – Taxpayers Union founder Jordan Williams’ courtroom rant

Political commentator and blogger Martyn Bradbury on Friday afternoon told the court that Jordan Williams was “manipulative” and akin to a “venomous spider”. 

Bradbury had the jury in fits of laughter as he also explained his disdain for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater. 

Without knowing what he actually said I think that’s quite sad, not funny.

“Loathe is not strong enough a word,” he said. 

His descriptions prompted Williams’ lawyer Peter McKnight to suggest Bradbury was being “flippant”. 

Bradbury gave evidence of Williams’ character and criticised his relationship with Slater. 

Williams’ leaking information about Craig to Slater was for Williams’ “own political ends”, Bradbury thought. 

 “As far as I was concerned, I thought the leaflet was an appropriate response to a pack of political sadists,” Bradbury said.

“I think this [trial is] an angry fight between two people who don’t like each other much. It’s very, very important for the jury to find the truth in this.” 

That is funny, trying to instruct the jury.

Waatea 5th Estate wrap up

I’ve had a chance to liksten to the final Waatea 5th estate of the year, possibly the final show altogether unless they receive NZ On Air funding for next year’s election campaigning.

In Martyn Bradbury’s introduction he said “where we wrap the most important news events with the best political panel on television. Joining us tonight to wrap the political year for our final show of 2016…”

He named a heap of people on the social media panel, saying “follow them tonight for the last time using the hashtag #waatea5thestate”. That sounds more final.

On the panel were deputy mayor of Auckland, Penny Hulse, union secretary Mike Treen, Marama Fox (Maori Party) and Grant Robertson (Labour).

The first issue discussed was housing and associated with that, welfare. The Government deserves a fair bit of criticism on housing but this was just about as over the top as you could get. It was a bashing.

The most notable comment was from Penny Hulse, saying that the Auckland council had given the Government the tools they needed via the Unitary Plan so the Government should just build houses now. The Unitary Plan took 6 years (although the building consents and land availability go back much longer) – has it even taken effect yet? To join in the Government bashing without a glimmer of taking any responsibility was a bit rich from Hulse.

Bradbury: “The second issue of the year was spin. Never before has information been so manipulated.” Pot (albeit a small one) calling a large kettle black.

He reeled of a number of justified and stupid gripes, one of the worst manipulation of information being “forty one thousand homeless people aren’t really homeless” – that was a dig at a supposed  claim from the Government but it depends on how ‘homeless’ is defined. University of Otago researcher suggests the actual number of what most people would view as homeless is about 10% of that:

If the homeless population were a hundred people, 70 are staying with extended family or friends in severely crowded houses, 20 are in a motel, boarding house or camping ground, and 10 are living on the street, in cars, or in other improvised dwellings.

http://www.otago.ac.nz/news/news/otago613529.html

Also “and the three hundred thousand kids in poverty aren’t really in poverty” is an ongoing spin, depending on what ‘poverty’ is defined as.

It was another Government bashing and Grant Robertson joined in but got a return serve from Marama Fox.

Bradbury: Marama what was your favourite political spin of the year?

Marama: Look ah actually Bomber you know what I’ve found as a newbie to politics is that these guys, Grant I love you, you know I do, but you guys are just as good at spin as the blue ones are as good at spin.

You guys spin this stuff out of control all the time to get some political leverage over each other. I am absolutely sick of the spin. Can we just tell the truth.

You know everybody moans about “oh you’re at the table blah blah blah, what has that got for you. Well I’ll tell you what it got for us because we’re at the table. Paula Bennett now spends $41 million on emergency housing….because we’re at the table. She is now implementing the Utah model that I gave her.

Bradbury spluttered a bit over that, then said “um, imagine all of the things you’re going to be able to do ah Marama if you’re at a Labour Party government next year, you’ll be able to do a hell of a lot more”.

Andrew Little has attacked the Maori Party recently and Labour want to obliterate them from Parliament.

Then, ironically, the third issue of the year was “the appalling state of journalism and the rise of click bait bullshittery”.

Bradbury then said “how can you get progressive visions out to the public when most of our media sound like Fox News?” Slater thinks the ‘media party’ bats for the other side. Perhaps it’s mostly somewhere in between these two extremists.

Bradbury: “I mean if you look at the coverage of the Unitary Plan it was literally the end of Western civilisation as we understood it, cats and dogs would start living together, planes would fall from the sky. None of that has occurred”.  None of that was hinted at or implied let alone claimed literally.

Hulse: “The Unitary Plan was landed despite the New Zealand Herald. The exciting thing for me is the rise of things like The Spinoff, then work that Gen Zero’s doing, the intelligent commentators who are now taking over that vacuum that’s been left by vacuous reporting”. She didn’t rate Bradbury or The Daily Blog as either intelligent or vacuous.

Bradbury: “Marama do you sometimes just want to slap Paddy Gower?”

Predictions for next year.

Grant Robertson:

I think we will see a change of government. The Labour Greens MoU is one of the big political developments in this year that we’ve just had and that will get it’s chance to come to fruition to lead that government. It’s going to get ugly next year as it always does when the right field…are on the back foot. It’s going to be difficult but we will come to the election and we will get result and then Marama will be able to join in with a change of government.

Penny Hulse:

If the Government don’t get Auckland right they are in for a very rough ride.

Marama Fox:

The Maori Party is going to take out four or five seats at least. [Exclamations from Robertson and Bradbury]

That’s probably no less realistic than Robertson.

We will be the king makers. Nobody wants to go to Winston. They want to see stable government. They believe in an independent Maori voice. And whether or not the Labour Party and the Greens’ MoU have said that they want us or don’t want us, when the time comes they’ll come knocking on the door and we’ll be ready with the things we  ‘re gonna negotiate to push our policies further.

Bradbury: Would the Maori Party be able to work with the Labour Party next year in government Marama?

Marama Fox: We’ve always said we will work with anybody, whoever is the government. Geez if we can work with blue undies we can sure as heck work with red undies.

Mike Treen:

I’m very hopeful that it’s going to be a change of government ah this year. I’m less confident that the change of government is going to produce the changes that we need, and I think that Labour needs to, ah  Labour and the Greens as sort of the joint parties of Opposition that are proposing themselves as an alternative government  at the moment need to come up with some things that will capture people’s imagination in terms of the type of change that is going to move the country forward.

At the moment I think it’s just a little too itsy bitsy and incremental, and it’s not telling people that it’s going to be a genuine alternative to the government that we have.

Labour in particular have nowhere near revealed their policies yet.

But what’s good at the moment is that this government is losing it’s image of infallibility, and the midas touch of John Key seems to have disappeared, and the housing issue has done that in the first instance. And so I think the chances of a change in government are much more realistic and I look forward to it.

Notably no mention of the mana Movement in any of the predictions.

Martyn Bradbury:

My final word. This is our final show. After seven glorious months a massive thank you to Andy at Face TV, the face TV crew, Will our director who’s a multi tasking technical superstar (I didn’t write that), Aaron and his team of metrosexual be-speckled uber nerds from Slipstream (I didn’t write that either), our amazing political multi functional Maori lesbian socialist friendly centre right producer and host Claudette (she totally wrote that).

Willie Jackson who shuts the bloody elevator door (I didn’t write any of this), to all our guest commentators, guest tweeters, amazing. Thanks also to our sponsors the Aotearoa Credit Union and Voyager Internet. Willie and I came up with this project because we couldn’t believe the diabolical level of debate from Seven Sharp and Story.

 In our seven months we have done more public interest broadcasting than Story and Seven Sharp combined.

Bradbury is not using comparable examples. Story and Seven Sharp are only partly political and I don’t think debate is a normal part of their formats.

Q & A and The Nation are better comparisons that are not mentioned.

We believe that democracy is only as strong as it’s media and if you are only hearing one side of the story then you have a one eyed electorate.

I hear many sides of many stories where I look.

We have a funding application in with New Zealand On Air, so we hope to see you next year as the election campaign heats up. We hope to see you next year.

So they are shutting down due to funding – I think Bradbury asked for donations recently.

Should NZ on Air fund a hard left political activist show? I wonder what Bradbury would say if the funded Whale Oil.

 

Is anyone terrified by MANA?

Anger. Fury. Fear. Bomber talks up a terror campaign at The Daily Blog:

It’s MANA that the elites fear turning populist anger against them

Bryce Edwards covers off the anger that is simmering in the electorate and the fear by elites of where that anger will erupt, but I think he misses a very important part of the spectrum which is open to radicalism.

And that is MANA.

To date the fear is that angry hordes of the disaffected and under educated will elect some type of Trump-esk figure who will take the nation to hell in a hand basket.

Maybe.

But if you look at who is bleeding here, it is young, poor and brown. The middle classes are getting nervous about the inequality and the pundits are scrambling to understand a poverty that is beyond their suburbs.

The furious response at Hone announcing his re-entry into politics suggests the elites fear those who are being hurt most by the housing crisis and growing inequality will rejoin the debate and demand a welfare state that isn’t as cruel and draconian as the current one has become.

I don’t recall seeing any fury. Bemusement was more apparent.

Radically demanding a reorganisation of the neoliberal state is what makes the elites nervous, not some old warhorse like Winston making ‘two wongs don’t make a right’ styled 1970s retro-racist jokes.

Given their lack of anything close to success to date radicals demanding a revolution will not be threatening many nerves.

If the poor and those on benefits re-engaged under a radical MANA brand demanding dignity, that would scare the bejesus out of the elites.

In the last election MANA attempted to gain representation using Kim Dotcom’s cash. The electorate punished Hone for trying to be too clever and screamed sell out, the grim reality of poverty however now howels at the door and those being hurt most by Key’s elitist economy are scrambling for a radical solution to their ever decreasing living standards. If MANA provides that, the elites will be terrified.

I doubt that many people will be terrified by Bradbury or by MANA.

Combined with the Internet Party and Dotcom’s millions they got 1.42% of the vote last election, they have no MPs, they barely register in polls, and Labour and the Greens have moved on without them. Labour never wanted to be seen with them.

Voters are likely to see another Bradbury promoted campaign not with terror but as terrible.

Bomber promotes war, fear and terror in NZ

Fear, terror, hate, evil, war.

Don’t worry, what this Bomber promotes is unlikely to be felt by anyone. He is as lethal as a water bomb using a hundred year old balloon.

From a Martyn Bradbury post at The Daily Blog: Andrew Little + John Key declare war on Hone Harawira and MANA movement

There has been no official declarations, just more wishful thinking. But the language used is trying hard to promote conflict.

John Key and Andrew Little have immediately opened up a war of words…

No they haven’t, they responded to news that Harawira was standing in next year’s election with more like ‘yeah, so what’.

Both Little & Key have very specific reasons for attacking MANA…

…it highlights how both political parties fear a populist peoples movement…

For Little, his attack on Hone is part of Labour’s terror

…Labour who illegally sent the terror squad…

Labour hate being reminded…

For Key. his attack on Hone is fuelled…

The fear Hone has caused by just announcing he is back…

…a reminder of how terrified the establishment are that the poor could gain genuine political representation.

…to overthrow this evil Government

Bomber against the world. The same old revolution repackaged with rusty old rhetoric.

Someone recently referred to him as Cadbury, but his chocolate mind has been in the sun too long.

Morphing the Mana Party into the MANA Movement may make some headway, but with friends like Martyn there won’t be many parties quaking in their political boots.

Not much to fear here.

Internal polling shock

A surprise result from an internal political poll: “Do Bomber’s attempts at talking up a Green-Labour bloc perception have any credibility?”

  • No 100%
  • Yes 0%

Margin of error: 0.00
Sample size: 1

As predicted here Martyn Bradbury has followed up claims that ‘internal poll rumours’ would support his rants with Latest Internal Polling – National in trouble.

The impact of the Memorandum of Understanding has triggered something deep in the electorate if the latest internal polling is anything to go by.

Obliging the mainstream media to change the way they report politics from a first by the post perspective to an MMP one changes the way voters see the Opposition.

That change seems to be happening at an alarming pace.

The mainstream media aren’t obliged to report things the way Bradbury insists and they haven’t changed how they report polls, which is poorly.

Bradbury claims to have “the latest internal polling” without disclosing:

  • Who has done the polling?
  • What was the question asked?
  • What was the sample size?
  • When was the polling done?
  • What was the margin of error?
  • Is Bradbury making things up?

So what result is Bradbury claiming?

The latest internal polling has National free falling to 44%, Labour at 31% and Greens at 12%.

That means the Labour-Green bloc is at 43% and National is on 44% – that’s a mere 1 percent lead and the speed of the turn around suggests something has snapped in terms of voter apathy.

Even if those are actual results from a credible poll they aren’t particularly surprising or much out of the ordinary. All three party results are within the ranges they have been getting over the past year.

Bradbury has been making unsubstantiated claims and has been trying to talk up a political revolution for several days, ignoring more realistic assessments of polling by the likes of Phil Goff and Michael Cullen.

Bradbury actually had both Goff and Cullen talking about polls on Thursday night on Waatea 5th Estate.

Bradbury:

Sir Michael isn’t the biggest change here the perception, we report polls like sports results, National 48, Labour 30, that’s an FPP view, and we are in an MMP environment. The combined bloc of Labour Green shows voters the election is a lot closer doesn’t it?

Cullen:

Well yes but not significantly different. I mean the poll out today, there was another poll from Roy Morgan which showed Labour up just one, Greens two, and they seem to be taking the votes off New Zealand First if you believe, ignoring the fact that it never works like that and polls bounce around.

Basically we’ve still got this gap between Labour Greens on one side and National on the other of about five to eight percent. 

And it still comes down to they key issue which I think the Greens privately recognise…but it’s Labour’s got to win votes off National for there to be a secure change of government, and so far we’re not seeing that.

I mean for Labour to go up and the Greens and new Zealand First to go down it just means that the sort of the same not large enough plate of beans is being passed around between three eaters.

And it’s a fact that National keeps sticking around  forty seven forty eight which is the thing that’s still got to be concerning for Labour and the Greens in particular because you can’t say that Winston’s locked into a change of government.

Anybody who thinks that doesn’t understand how Winston operates in any particular situation.

National has dropped into the low forties occasionally but also sometimes goes up into the fifties but as shown by the RNZ poll of polls “National’s average through this year has been between 44% and 48%, remarkably high for the midyear of a third term in government”.

Bradbury:

Phil there are lots of rumours about the new internal party polling…

Substantive polling usually takes longer than two days to do (this was two days after the MoU announcement). And Labour or the Greens woukld hand their internal poll results over to blabbermouth Bradbury? (Possibly if they thought he would do a job for them)

…that would suggest the blocs are even closer. If you gain momentum could we see level pegging before the end of the year?

Roy Morgan:

During September (2015) support for National fell 6% to 44.5% now just behind a potential Labour/Greens alliance 46% (up 8%).

During April (2016) support for National fell 3.5% to 42.5% – the lowest for two years since April – May 2014, now only 2% ahead of a potential Labour/Greens alliance 40.5% (down 1.5%).

Labour+Greens have fluctuated in and out of level pegging so it’s already an unsurprising poll outcome.

Goff:

Well I think that’s certainly what Labour wants to see. At the moment, ah,  you know National has been reasonably consistent in the public polls, around forty seven, forty eight.

On public poll of poll averages, yes they have been consistently in the high forties but not in individual polls as shown by the above Roy Morgan results.

Ah in our own polling they have from time to time dropped as low as forty three percent and Labour on thirty six. Ah then you can see that a Labour Green coalition could easily become government at the next election.

If Greens poll high when Labour do, but as Labour goes up Greens tend to go down (they have been as low as 8% in public polls).

And ah in the midst of all of that of course you’ve got Winston Peters who has that balance of power. I doubt that he’d want to come in with, ah, let the left if the left was still polling well behind National.

What Labour has to do as Mike Cullen has said, it’s gotta win some of those light blue votes off National. That’s what changes an election.

And ah I think there are a lot of things in that environment out there, I’m thinking of housing, and I’m thinking of transport problems in Auckland. There are a lot of things out there that people are really unhappy about in a way that they haven’t been over the last two terms of the National Government.

So the environment is there.

If Labour and the Greens look like a stable coalition force, and not like the, you know the Kim Dotcom Mana Internet mix that was at the last election, then I think there’s a prospect that Labour and the Greens can win the next election.

That’s probably an unintentional dig at Bradbury who promoted the Kim Dotcom Mana Internet mix as the supposed game changer last election.

Neither Cullen nor Goff mentioned the Memorandum of Understanding.

Some interesting and probably widely shared measured views on polls and election chances by Cullen and Goff, but since then Bradbury has ignored most of that (what would they know?) and continued on his perception building exercise that ignores basic facts about past polls.

The only shock would be if Bradbury’s claims and promotions were taken seriously.

MoU, National panic and the missing million

After a critical start Martyn Bradbury is going hard out on Memorandum of Understanding revolutionary fervour.

And he’s making a number of unsubstantiated and at times unbelievable claims. One could almost think he is making things up to try and create a perception.

Yesterday: Panic in the National Party at sudden jump in support of Labour

Rumour has it that there is panic inside the National Party. The significant jump in support for Labour has highlighted the deepening resentment at this Government and that starts creating tensions within National’s unity.

Half of one poll taken just as the MoU was being announced provides scant evidence of ‘a significant jump in support’ for Labour.

And 29% (or 31% for the second half of the poll) is hardly a significant jump when looking at the Colmar Brunton poll results over the last 12 months:

– 32%, 32%, 31%, 32%, 28%, 29% (31% for half the last poll).

Labour jumped 5.2%, a statistically significant jump. The blocks now are 47 to 42.

The 5.2% movement was within one polling period.

They are called blocs, not blocks.

He has compared results two different results – the lower pre-MoU result for National and the higher post MoU result for Labour+Greens, rounded up.

Using the second half results for all three parties:

  • National 49.0%
  • Labour (31.3) + Greens (10.4) = 41.7%

That’s a difference of 7.3%, almost the same as the 7.2% difference pre-MoU.

What needs to happen to continue this momentum is the next round of Polls show that number get tighter and there are rumours circulating around about internal polling that has shown this really hurting National.

There is no momentum at all, especially on the key bloc difference.

‘Rumours circulating’ and ‘internal polls’ are bullshit without any substantiating evidence, and their is none.

Expect those internal Polls to start leaking on blogs in the next couple of days.

How about the next day, today. Bradbury has posted: Internal Party Polling

The most powerful impact of the Memorandum of Understanding will come from the next set of Polls. Now the media are obliged to refer to the Green-Labour Bloc, voters get to see how close the two sides are in reality and that perception generates momentum.

The next public poll is due in a week or so from Roy Morgan, but they tend to fluctuate quite a bit. It will take 3 months of Roy Morgan polls to get a reasonable idea if there has been a sustained shift in support.

What will be concerning National is the speed of the change of allegiance Labour managed in the latest Colmar Brunton Poll.

Anyone who actually knows anything about polling shouldn’t have any concerns at this stage, especially when Bradbury’s all important Labour+Greens hasn’t moved.

It’s brought NZ First and Greens down to where their support base really is and it’s reset the political debate.

That claim is based on nothing. Greens and NZ First poll results have varied more in the last 12 months with Colmar Brunton:

  • Greens 13%, 12%, 12%, 8%, 10%, 12% (pre MoU 13.8%, post MoU 10.4%)
  • NZ First  7%, 7%, 9%, 10%, 9%, 9% (pre MoU 10.9%, post MoU 6.9%)

Bradbury then launches into some aimless waffle until:

What the momentum to Labour and presenting the Polls differently will do is draw those missing million back to the ballot box.

  1. There is no momentum
  2. Polls won’t be presented differently (bloc support has been presented for yonks)
  3. The ‘missing million’ was a theory that failed last election.
  4. They won’t be drawn back, most non-voters have always been non-voters.

There is some suggestion that has already begun.

Bradbury can suggest all he likes, but will he be taken seriously? No one at all has commented on his post.

The latest internal polling could be keeping David Farrar working double shifts to explain the free fall.

Hilarious.

The building frustration of the Opposition has finally found somewhere to rally to.

Like the last fourteen rallying cries Bradbury has plaintively hollered (followed by cries of frustration after another ‘prediction’ failed).

National’s sky scraping highs are created in part by people not participating, I think voters coming off the fence are swelling Labour’s numbers and hurting National’s.

People not participating have given National high levels of support? They have increased their vote in each of the last 3 elections:

  • 2008: 1,053,398
  • 2011: 1,058,638
  • 2014: 1,131,501

A poll does not measure whether people are deciding to vote or not.

As shown above Labour’s numbers haven’t swelled. National’s numbers haven’t been hurt.

Tomorrow’s post from Bradbury could be interesting if he keeps up the momentum of the last few days – if you enjoy farce and humour.

 

Bradbury bombs on basic facts

Martyn Bradbury has been all over the place on the Labour-Green Memorandum of Understanding, initially criticising it but eventually claiming that it changes everything.

His claim that the “new perception changes everything” fails basic fact tests, and “the way the media must now report the Polls and the way voters see the Polls that is the most immediate impact of this MoU” is bollocks – media already report on polls in the way he says they must.

When the MoU was announced, and since, Bradbury has slammed the announcement:

June 3:

“The launch was a clumsy flop…”

June 4:

“The inhumane haste at which the Labour Party and Greens announced their Memorandum of Understanding last week has been stripped bare by a power struggle that has quietly been occurring behind the scenes within the Greens.”

But by June 5:

The launch of the MoU may have been rushed, clumsy and with little detail so as to avert a strategic change of position for the Greens, but Andrew’s performance helped prove that a union together was better than cross bench neutrality.

What few political pundits or commentators could understand last week, was the unseemly haste with which the Greens and Labour rushed out their Memorandum of Understanding. While many progressive voters have wanted this announcement for 8 years, the timing seemed odd and the actual details very light, the Green Party AGM in Christchurch this weekend helped answer some of those questions.

All this talk about haste probably means that Bradbury wasn’t told in advance so it caught him by surprise. But after attending the Green AGM in the weekend it seems like Labour or the Greens might have promised him a new laptop or something.

Today: Why the MoU changes everything and why the NZ mainstream media are the worst enemies of democracy

The haste of stitching together the MoU to stall the Identitarians and blue-green factions inside the Greens from moving to a neutrality stance at the last AGM aside, the Labour-Green Memorandum of Understanding changes everything in one simple move.

New Zealanders aren’t too bright, partly from the lack of quality information they get (Jane Bowron makes this point today – yet manages to miss the impact Waatea 5th Estate has had at 7pm)…

Bowron missed the impact of quite a few things, like the of landing of a golden autumn leaf in the mildest of June zephyrs.

The mainstream media, apart from colluding with hate speech merchants like Cameron Slater (until they were caught) and pimping for the interests of bankers, corporations, farmers and property speculators are the worst enemies of democracy in NZ because they never take the time to point out how close the MMP environment makes the election for National.

That sounds like nothing apart from a general bellyache at enemies.

When TVNZ and TV3 do their latest Polls, they sell it as ‘Labour 30% and National at 47%. This constant advertising for National gives the impression that Key’s 4th term is assured. What the MoU does is force Paddy Gower and other mainstream media pimps to reflect the real Parliamentary equation, that combined, Labour-Greens are 42% and National 47%.

That new perception changes everything.

It forces the media to acknowledge the election is closer and it suddenly dawns on sleepy hobbits that actually Key isn’t untouchable.

It is this perception change in the way the media must now report the Polls and the way voters see the Polls that is the most immediate impact of this MoU.

Except for one thing – this is bollocks.

The media can report things however they like, their is no compulsion to report polls in a way that Bradbury or Labour/Greens want them to.

It suggests that Bradbury and possible Greens and/or Labour are trying have their cake and eat it – they say the MoU is entirely about changing the Government and ends at the election, but won’t say how a coalition may look until the voters have ‘spoken’ at the election so has nothing to do with coalition convolutions.

They don’t want to be connected in coalition configurations, except when it suits it seems that they are.

And TVNZ (One News) and TV3 (Newshub) already report on combined poll results anyway, so Bradbury fails on facts on that.

One News in April 2016:  Flag flop fails to dent Government’s popularity

When converted into seats in Parliament, it’s a clear cut win for National who get 61 seats and the ability to govern alone in a Parliament of 121.

Labour would have 34, and even with the Greens 12 seats could only muster 46 as a left wing block.

NZ First would have 11 seats while Act, United Future and the Maori Party all would have one.

Newshub in May 2016: Key’s popularity plummets to lowest level

2_seats_in_the_house1
Roy Morgan does similar: National and Labour vote up in May but NZ First still holds the balance of power position despite vote falling

During May support for National rose 3% to 45.5%, now ahead of a potential Labour/Greens alliance 41.5% (up 1%).

If a New Zealand Election were held now the latest NZ Roy Morgan Poll shows NZ First 9.5% (even though down 3% still NZ First’s second highest level of support in twenty years) would be in a position to determine who would form the next New Zealand Government.

So all polls highlight the fact that Labour+Greens can’t do it alone and would need NZ First.

Back to Bradbury:

When TVNZ and TV3 do their latest Polls, they sell it as ‘Labour 30% and National at 47%. This constant advertising for National gives the impression that Key’s 4th term is assured. What the MoU does is force Paddy Gower and other mainstream media pimps to reflect the real Parliamentary equation, that combined, Labour-Greens are 42% and National 47%.

They already do that.

That new perception changes everything.

It isn’t a new perception so it changes nothing.

It forces the media to acknowledge the election is closer and it suddenly dawns on sleepy hobbits that actually Key isn’t untouchable.

The media have made it clear that the reality that seems to escape Bradbury – or he wants to hide it or hide from it – is that NZ First can on current polling decide who to side with.

It is this perception change in the way the media must now report the Polls and the way voters see the Polls that is the most immediate impact of this MoU.

So going by this it will have no impact.

Bradbury fails the fact test. That is probably no change either.