The Laboured Party has elected their fourth leader since they were last in power. As that was only five years ago, this is not a good look. But have they got it right this time? Somehow I doubt it. Helen Clark was the last good leader they had. Of course she lost her head because she lost the election and that is a pretty common outcome for leaders who lose an election.
She was then replaced by Phil Goffisthatthetime who, nice guy though he is, was not made of sufficiently stern stuff and who surprised nobody (probably including himself) when he lost the next election.
Next up was an equally inappropriate contender in the form of The Shearer; a diplomat cut from a similarly limp bolt of cloth as his predecessor. I have always believed he was the compromise candidate when the party was at loggerheads over whether to elect Cunliffe (without the “t”) or (Nosy) Parker. As with many compromises in life he ended up pleasing nobody except perhaps those warming the treasury benches.
So now we have the recycled version of Cunliffe which to my eye looks very little different to the rather smug and abrasive version that surfaced at the last leadership stoush.
For those who watch NZ politics fairly closely it is no secret that we have a dearth of good leaders among the parties in our parliament. In fact dearth doesn’t really do justice to the situation. An almost complete absence of good leaders would seem to sum it up better.
This might not matter so much were it not for the fact that the party in power at the moment is laying waste to almost everything Kiwis have held dear and a change of government is urgently needed. In order to bring that about one would expect some good leadership would be a pre-requisite for any of the pretenders.
Of course we could all just bumble along and hope that Jianqi accidentally shoots himself in the foot and the Natsis self-destruct. You might think this could happen with their coalition partners are doing their darndest to emulate the leadership cock-ups of the Laboured Party.
The Maori Party weren’t able to make up their minds how many leaders they needed until someone kicked Sharples in the goolies and he got the point and stepped aside. The Actors went through two leaders until their cunning election plan in 2011 misfired and their leader didn’t get elected and they had to elect a very short man with a very small brain because he was the only one they managed to get into parliament. And of course the No Future Party managed to retain the same leader but lost the entire party for a while.
However through all of this and despite the squinty-eyed little money-man dropping more than his share of passes the Natsis have stayed true to the one leader since 2006. Prior to that they had three leaders within the space of five years and they paid for that by remaining on the opposition benches.
Significantly the current ‘opposition’ parties have managed pretty much to remain stable. Winston First is still all about Winston, Mana is always going to be Hone’s party – he would leave and start another were it to be otherwise – and the Greens have been stable, only changing their leadership due to a death and a retirement.
But these three parties cannot muster enough support to govern without a coalition partner such as the Laboured Party and that is where the plan all turns to shit.
Love ‘em or hate ‘em, the Laboured Party are a necessary part of any alternative to the NWO/Money worshipping/CIA lapdogs that run this show for now. This presents a big problem for New Zealand. I hate to think what this country will look like if they get a third term.
Unfortunately I can’t see Cunliffe being the one to galvanise the opposition and convince the electorate. He certainly doesn’t convince me. But then I am a picky bugger.
In my opinion Grant Robertson was the obvious choice. He is smart, charismatic and funny. He reminds me of David Lange before he got Rogered by Douglas. Maybe that was what the wider party was worried about. By all accounts the parliamentary party wanted him to lead them and it is that which worries me most about the chances of Cunliffe being able to get them onto the government side of the house.
Of course the unspoken notion is that the wider party was afraid NZ wasn’t ready for their first openly gay PM. I hope that wasn’t their reasoning because I personally believe they were grossly underestimating the electorate if it was. After all this is the country that was among the first to legalise homosexual practices nearly thirty years ago and has recently been one of the first countries in the world to legalise same sex marriage and who was one of the first countries in the world to elect a trans-sexual MP. I think that track record would indicate that the although the average Kiwi bloke or blokes might make jokes about people with different sexual orientation to themselves, they really couldn’t care less what people do in the privacy of their own homes.
It remains to be seen whether Cunliffe remains to be seen still at the helm in October next year. I hope that he does, despite my reservations about him, because a fifth leader in six years would almost certainly be the kiss of death for the Laboured Party and unfortunately for any hope of a coalition to replace the current unholy alliance that is in power now.
Still hope springs eternal, eh and spring is here now so who knows?