Red Alert

A New Direction for New Zealand- David Shearer

Posted by on November 19th, 2012

Here is the speech that brought the Labour Party Conference to its feet. A strong articulation of Labour values, backed up by concrete ideas to take New Zealand on a path to prosperity and fairness. Two specific new policies as well, Kiwibuild that will see 100,000 affordable houses and the Healthy Homes Guarantee that will see proper standards for rental properties. Enjoy.

66 Responses to “A New Direction for New Zealand- David Shearer”

  1. Alby says:

    As for DC’s electorate, executive committee considering putting a complaint into the Labour Party Council. Forget it as their the  gatekeepers & pushed DC forward. They have made their point to Shearer ‘stay on track stop wavering right & lift your game. Nothing wrong with a shot across the bow to remind him of his obligations. Conclusion… all good well done the wise heads!

  2. SPC says:

    Since the barbeque, there is this a few months ago – Hooton’s claim that a third party is trying to cause Shearer-Cunliffe conflict.

    Then his call on 16 November for Shearer to resign so Cunliffe can take over.

    Most recently that this will all now blow over within a week.

  3. Jack Ramaka says:

    The whole thing sounds like a National Party beat-up to try and destabilise the Labour Party. National is working with it’s cronies in the right wing sectors of the Press to create confusion through the media, after all Joyce and Key are the Masters of Spin.

    I believe the above statement that a third party is trying to create conflict between Shearer and Cunliffe.

    Cunliffe has obviously got a heap of ability, as I have said b4 1 + 1 = 3 (Synergy). Shearer and Cunliffe need to sit down and talk this through so they are both sailing the ship in the same direction. New Zealand is looking for a party to take the country on a positive path into the future.

    We have had 30-40 years of economic stupidity, bulk State Asset Sales, Leaky Buildings, the Breakdown of the Education and Mental Health Sectors, the Sale of NZ to Offshore Investors the list goes on.

  4. The Al1en says:

    “Ok A1 you may not be who I thought you were”

    Wouldn’t be the first time I’ve heard that 😉

    “Lastly roll our sleeves up & make it happen. Sitting on our hands in protest is not an option next time around. Another term of National ‘can not’ be allowed.”

    Which is why the Labour caucus needs it’s collective head examined for making a really bad decision, not once, not twice, but three times.

    “I’d encourage you to join the Party”
    “It won’t exactly break the bank, after all!”

    Until we get someone from parliament with the balls to come on here and tell us their prediction for Shearer’s short/mid-term fate, so they can be judged by their actions in this vote, I’m not giving anything to Labour… And from a die hard red, too.

    Come on mps, it’s your blog. Tell us how well your top choice will do and suffer the consequences when he fails.
    Chris, Trevor, Grant, anyone?

    Thought not.

  5. Jim says:

    Shearer has come out of this looking weak and anti-democratic. I can’t look at him now without feeling disappointment. He was supposed to be the guy with real depth of character.

  6. Jack Ramaka says:

    What did you expect Shearer to do curl up in a corner like a little mouse, they have selected him as leader for this term let the guy get on with the job and if he fails so be it.

    No doubt Cunliffe has a heap of ability but the hatred towards him by members of the right wing establishment would have been playing right into National’s hands.

    One man does not make a party, Shearer is an educated man with real life experiences, Key is an economic idealist he is not an Investment Banker which everyone believes he is. He is a money market currency trader who does not understand the real world. I would question whether he has ever got his hand dirty or dirt under his fingernails during his working career.

    It’s over folks!! Shearer is leader of the Opposition until the next election, and if Cunliffe rolls him in February Labour are Gone Burger at the next election.

    Laboour have to present themselves as a credible opposition party otherwise they are history.

    Remember an organisation is only as good as it’s people.

  7. Anne says:

    Clarification: the occasional commenter ‘anne’ is a different person to the occasional commenter ‘Anne’. Having said that, I agree with a lot of the general sentiments she has expressed.

  8. Rosemary Cathcart says:

    What price democracy?
    Have we as a Party collectively abandoned common sense along with the most fundamental of democratic principles?
    At the weekend I attended an exciting, invigorating conference, with informed and passionate young people forming a very significant part of the large audience – as one commentator has said, there was a real sense of renewal for the Party. Particularly evident was the strong positive response to Party moves towards a more democratic organisation. Ordinary Party members spoke of their desire to be seen as more than just raffle ticket sellers and envelope stuffers, their longing to play a more meaningful role in supporting the political cause they are so committed to. As a first step, the opportunity to be included in voting for the leadership was welcomed with huge enthusiasm.
    On Tuesday I learned with disbelief that on winning an interim vote of caucus support for his leadership, the current incumbent had moved immediately to severely punish his rival for the job by demotion and removal of his portfolios.
    This is a move which belongs in a dictatorship, not a democracy. Since when in a democracy is it a crime to challenge the leadership?
    Of course the Party needs unity and of course the leader needs to know he has the support of his caucus. But support has to be earned. David Shearer has not yet earned that support. His performance as leader has consistently been criticised by commentators of both the Left and the Right and by many within the Party as well. He is clearly nowhere near winning the public vote as preferred Prime Minister. In these circumstances it is not only reasonable, it is in fact wholly necessary for us as a Party to ask whether we have the right person in place for the job ahead.
    What is not reasonable is to seek to suppress and savagely punish the person who asks that question. Let us remember that David Cunliffe was actually the preferred choice of the membership when the leadership was last raised, that he has come across as a strong and authoritative opponent to John Key, which David Shearer has not, and that New Zealand needs his outstanding level of expertise in exactly those portfolios which have been taken from him. He is surely justified in making his challenge.
    How can David Shearer in turn justify his response? Is he being more egotistical than David Cunliffe is said to be in assuming such a dictatorial stance? Is it fear of a strong competitor? Does he have to learn from John Key, of all people, who quoted what Helen Clark knew and wisely practised – keep your friends close and your enemies even closer?
    Whatever the answer, this action is unacceptable in a Party supposed to be leading the way in true democracy in this country, and David Shearer now has much more to prove than he did before. One good speech does not a leader make, Mr Shearer. So far you certainly won’t have my vote in February – that is, if we ordinary members actually do get a vote this time round.

  9. Tim G says:

    @Al1en – Don’t hold your breath. Mr McGoo has gagging orders on his MPs re: leadership with the notable exception of whichever rat (although I think more likely a chipmunk or a member of the anatid family) fed the media the story about David C’s reaction in the caucus meeting.

    Anyway, IrishBill sets out a few compelling reasons to part with your $15 at the Standard: – you can catch up with your fellow ex-Red Alert contributors (and Pete George) there 😉

  10. The Al1en says:

    “@Al1en – Don’t hold your breath.”

    Brighter futures and new directions for all 😆

  11. Jack Ramaka says:

    Brighter Futures for all, we will have to tidy up the mess the Tories have left for us all.

  12. jennifer says:

    Why is the screen shot on this post so unflattering of Shearer? Can’t be an error, or simple inattention to detail, surely? You should be ashamed, Grant.

  13. SPC says:

    I suspect its the only photo where he looks anything like Tony Blair.

  14. David H says:

    Yes you should replay the speech as No-ONE remembers it and soon they won’t remember the man who made it and then turned all the good work to shit by demanding that people get on bended knee and swear eternal loyalty. What a FOOL and Grant I have seen you standing there in all the speeches with that vacant grin on your face, well you Ain’t gonna be leader either.

  15. Firstly , I’m basically a centrist and not even a Labour party member . But I’m fully backing Shearer as the only /best feasible option for PM in 2014. Probably leading a very workable 3 way coalition. ( before the Nats sell off even more of the country ).

    There’s only 2 labour candidates remotely capable of being PM in 2014 – Shearer and Cunliffe . Of those , Shearer will definitely get most votes …..gaining as more people meet him ( as the personable Key has ) .
    A recent Stuff poll confirmed that , with Shearer still much ahead of Cunliffe , despite the current drive from certain unionists – eg Helen Kelly – to promote David Cunliffe everywhere.

    Note , Shearer even out-polled Helen Clark in Mt Albert .

    So far , he’s brought Labour up with his constructive style of politics , and is ahead of schedule . The coalition would likely win an election even tomorrow . That will grow .
    It was immediately noticeable that he’s not a glory hound and wanted his MP’s to front – and do it well . Labour MP’s were now positive , constructive and better researched than before . It pays off .

    Labour simply does not have a leadership problem….current one is fine , and best choice . Those who think he’s too centered could note that this is really his stated aim to be more Inclusive – as any stable Labour gov would have to be .

    Helen Clarke realised this and deliberately centered the party , to take the middle ground . and lasted 3 terms . While keeping the factions happy as best as could.

    A Labour gov should represent workers , but also has to represent the rest of NZ . At its best , it represents People………while the Nats are hell-bent on representing Money .

    But Shearer is also a reformist – good news – who will make courageous decisions . It’s already looking a bit like re-run of the Savage reforming Gov of the 30’s ….which it will need to be . His team set the right pattern for NZ , in a bad depression . We’ll almost certainly be in a depression by 2014 and radical and courageous moves will be needed… Shearer is the ideal man .

    Problem now for Labour is policies , and sometimes the same faces saying the same things and the fact that financially , the party is not offering enough different from the Nats , to sway people – especially those middle voters . And the farmers are terrified that the Labour-Green ETS scheme will wipe them out . The Nats have had the sense now to follow Canada and drop the ETS . Labour is best advised to leave that be , and come up with a direct action scheme – taxing those who can actually afford it – to clean up polution , etc .

    And forget about Kyoto and Copenhagen . Unless you really want to lose a lot of votes . Have you noticed that these schemes are really a cunning way to benefit banks and traders and establish Carbon as a de-facto world currency ? ( wake up folks ) .
    Best to just directly act in a clean green anti-pollution way , clean up lakes and rivers , boost organic market , etc. We don’t need a Kyoto stamp of approval on our food to sell it.

    A big problem is that while the 2 financial David’s are intelligent and trying to be responsible , they’ve also been too conservative . That doesn’t just lose votes , as voters assume Nats are the natural ‘money managers ‘ , it won’t be enough to handle a depressed economy in 2014 . More radical moves will be needed , though some can be easy to implement , and effective , and will keep all Labour members happy…….even the more radical unionists.

    Meanwhile – Excellent speech . Shearer’s one significant fault to date is that he often doesn’t improvise well – stumbles . Is basically a doer rather than a talker but will get better at that . Has made some good funny comments……best being that John Banks should be suspended from cabinet for his bad memory.
    This is only an image question – that can be improved . In substance , he’s been very good overall.

    The big Problem issue to come from the conference was that Shearer is being undermined – by David Cunliffe , probably with a co-ordinated effort from some unions….and likely instigated by Helen Kelly ( queen of the Marxists ).
    She already orchestrated the 2 biggest union /strike disasters in recent memory – THe Hobbit fiasco and the Auckland dockers ( with comrade Garry Parsloe ) . part of the union-Labour party deal is that the politicians are mostly obliged to back union action – even when that is absolutely wrong . So bad actions like those which only harm NZ as a whole bounce back and reduce votes for Labour.

    The Hobbit fiasco – a ruthless takeover bid by the unions on the whole NZ film industry , which nearly killed it off , was only costing NZers opportunity . Jackson promotes NZ , treats well and already pays above the American SAG rates . Warners were trying to invest in NZ for filming and give royalties to local actors . But the strike /delays cost them big money and like typical Hollywooders they got arrogant and angry. Their only sticking point was the Bryson law , which was done by Labour’s union lawyers in 2001 , changing the Act so that a work contract was meaningless .

    It all came down to interpretation in courts , and the unions would be able to create disputes and delays and punish the filmmakers till they got what they wanted . That’s unworkable . Directors will not work under double-triple time systems , with teabreaks at set times and stops for disputes with union reps that cause delays and can kill a film . They’ll go elsewhere . As the WArners-MGM group was about to. So was James Cameron , and others.

    So the Bryson rule ( probably done by Liane Dalziel and Charles Chauvel ? ) simply had to be changed back to allow filmakers to function properly . That’s basically all the Nats did , while negotiating well and getting a win-win deal for all . So Labour and unions just allowed the Nats to look good . That was the turning point that guarranteed Labour lost the election……no way back from it . And the strike on the movie – where no-one had done anything wrong – was not even official /legal . So protagonists like Kelly , Malcolm and Ward-Lealand kept lying about it . That’s because a democratic vote from the NZ actors equity union would never have endorsed it . Why would a young actor sabotage Peter Jackson – a great work opportunity ? It was done by a small clique of Auckland based actors – who weren’t in the movie – and using Helen Kelly’s help and networking skills , to create a media storm . The amount of lying about it all has been amazing.

    Likewise for the Auckland dockers strike , which did huge economic damage -especially to Auckland – and probably sent some ship biz permanently to OZ . Strikers were holding up signs about $13 an hour . Lies . The average docker was making about $150 , 000 pa based on a 32 hour week ! The Port co offered them a new collective deal with a pay rise (!) but more shift flexibilty . Comrade Parsloe refused. Apparently he’d rather see ships sailing around in circles ?
    Comrade Kelly brought in foreign unionists to get yet another TV drama award.
    When dockers are marching around chanting ” Whose port ?- our port ! What kind of power ? – Union power ! ” it won’t inspire the average Aucklander …….who might feel that they – and not the unions – owned the place ?
    Of course , the Labour politicians have to go along with it all . The solution is to only have legit union disputes . I was recently talking to a union lawyer – for a labouring union – who said that strikes are pointless – don’t help …..negotiation is the thing .

    So really its time for unionists to decide if they want to be Destructive or Constructive . Strikes are usually industrial sabotage.
    In Germany and Scandinavia the unions normally take a Constructive role with the big employers – better results . Shearer has made that point.
    The aim should be to get workers into participation , productivity bonuses and profit sharing bonuses etc….that’s the future . Also , we should be learning from Japan , and their idea of company loyalty….which looks after them.

    But some unionists prefer sabotage ? and that now comes out in the way Shearer is being undermined . Democracy is fine , but this new 40% change law looks bad ( should be 51% or more ) and only seems to be a union driven thing to overthrow the leadership whenever it can ? Having it regularly – and especially 3 months post election – is crazy , and could sabotage the election result. Why should people vote for a Gov , only to see it thrown out by a union driven minority 3 months later ?!
    To his credit , the very capable Andrew Little has opposed this and backed Shearer . Looks like a Kelly move ? She has the networking ability to direct the operation.

    I’d suggest this ought to stop and also that the threshold is changed to over 50% – soon – and voting done a year or more before and 2 years after ( same thing ? ) an election.

    Those who arrogantly think they can dictate and subvert and get away with it should take a good look at the Aussie ALP .
    This kind of subversion has killed them for the next 2 terms , now . They will be wasted at the next election . And all due to the hatchet job on Kevin Rudd . Okay , he’s sanctimonious and sometimes ignores colleagues…….but people voted for him !
    But backroom people – mainly unionists – thought they could install their woman Gillard ( an ex union lawyer ) and carry on as before . Think again . People still value democracy and don’ t like being dictated to . Labour will pay .

    So if you try this in NZ , it may be the end of the party as now – perhaps just splitting ?
    It would certainly be very destructive , and Labour might never recover .
    The political ambitions of Kelly and Cunliffe should take a back seat , to avoid such disasters ?
    Shearer has hinted that early in his speech – about not letting personal ambition conflict with the party aims . It could become a sink-or -swim issue for Labour , so I’d suggest dropping the subversion and working for a good common goal . Shearer is obviously trying to give everyone their chance , and not grandstanding for his own benefit . More than can be said for Kelly…..who would do the workers and unions a favour by resigning ?
    ( note – many workers don’t like unions , and these days Gov legislation can cover most of the issues ) .

    The sour grapes from some leftist commentators isn’t worth much . I’m usually amazed – as Chris Trotter waffles on – that people actually pay him for his opinion articles.

    So time to sign up for David Shearer’s ‘broad tent’ approach to the party and Gov , while driven by issues , values and humanity ? And a successful and constructive Gov from 2014 ?

  16. Tim G says:

    “A recent Stuff poll confirmed that , with Shearer still much ahead of Cunliffe , despite the current drive from certain unionists – eg Helen Kelly – to promote David Cunliffe everywhere.”

    Source please, Bob. Helen Kelly has repeatedly expressed confidence in Shearer in and around the LP conference. So please don’t misrepresent her position.

    Of course, whether the union delegates do in February will be a decision for them to make, at that time.