An apology to David Cunliffe

I want to apologise.  I was one of the flood of lefties who posted anti-Shearer statements in the week ahead of the conference.  I advocated for David Cunliffe as a prospective leader – indeed, the only leader with the potential for success in 2014, by my own assessment.

And now it looks like my post, among others, has shafted David Cunliffe.  We stirred the pot.  We shook the tree.  We rocked the boat, which knocked over the pot the tree was standing in.  And this convinced otherwise well-meaning, open-minded members of the Labour caucus that a dangerous plot was underway to undermine the very foundations of the Party by mounting an attack under cover of pseudonyms and Birnam wood.

So I’m sorry, David C.  Sorry that I played a part in what’s happening to you.

Hang on.

What the fuck am I saying?

The mainstream media constantly come down on this site, and bloggers in general, for being pseudonymous anonymous cowards with axes to grind.  You couldn’t move last week for Labour MPs declaring they don’t give a damn about blogs.

And yet suddenly the word of a handful of bloggers, and some awful shillery by Patrick Gower, is enough to bring Cunliffe to the brink of expulsion?

I mean, he hasn’t done anything.  Besides deliver good speeches and be generally charismatic and kind of dashing with the whole beard thing happening, Waitakere Woman likes a bit of scruff, yes she does.

… Sorry, got distracted there.  Cunliffe has done nothing, at least publicly.  Not spoken against Shearer.  Not made increasingly more leader-ish statements to the media (when he can talk to the media).  The only “source” for Cunliffe “threatening” the leadership is blogs, and Patrick Gower’s “but WHY, daddy?” interrogation methods.

Is it just me or does that make no fucking sense?

This situation is all the proof we need that there is, indeed, an anti-Cunliffe faction in the Labour Party.  People who perceive his very presence, the very thought that he might like the look of the leadership some day, as an active, viable threat to David Shearer.  (Because ambition is such a terrible attribute in a politician.)

Especially now the membership get more say, some might note.

So, because our media in their wisdom would really much rather report on a beat-up leadership challenge than actual policy, the ABCs are pretending to believe there’s a real problem here, that Cunliffe is up in the rafters in a mask about to drop a chandelier on Shearer’s head, so they can justify punishing and humiliating one of the most talented MPs on the front bench.

Because their first and only instinct, apparently, is self-preservation.

Wow, David C.  I am sorry.

Good luck for tomorrow, mate.


  1. Pascal's bookie

    Yep. It’s fucked up is what it is. Team Shearer spent all day today, the day after his big speech, bad mouthing one of their own, with the entirely predictable, and presumably desired, results all over the news now and in the papers for the rest of the week.

    And they claim Cunliffe is undermining the parties efforts? For.Fucks.Sake.

    People are allowed to think they’d do a better job as leader. If they do, then they are allowed to try and get the gig. There are ways of doing that are destructive to the party, and there are ways that are not. You pretty much want to keep it out of the media, behind closed doors.

    It seems like Cunliffe has been doing that. What has been obvious though is that Shearers supporters have been fueling it in the media. It’s inexplicable.

    I mean, Chris Hipkins today. How the fuck is that supposed to help. It makes Shearer look tuff? Not to me it doesn’t. To me it looks like they are threatening Cunliffe supporters with demotion and career ending rhetoric. And for what? Questioning not the direction, or the policy of the party, but the person of the leader.

    Confirms why I vote Green. These guys are just fucking idiots.

    • Ron

      All very well voting Green but that means you have to buy the whole Green Philosophy and I find that hard to do,

      • Pascal's bookie

        It only means that to the extent that it’s true for whoever you vote for. The only party that’s perfect for anyone is themselves I guess. But that wouldn’t be very effective, so you make your choices based on some sort of prioritisation, and get through the night as best you can.

        But I take your point. If there is something about the Greens that you just can’t endorse, even as a compromise position. Then don’t vote for them. But a vote for them doesn’t mean you have to agree with everything they say, although you have to be able to defend endorsing it, even if only to yourself.

        I know that’s a bit confused, but there it is.

        An example; I voted for Labour in 05. I hated, (fucking despised), the Foreshore and Seabed Act. Even though I didn’t agree with it, but my vote did endorse it, and reward it. I voted for it because the option was a Brash led government and all that would have meant. The Greens were flirting with the 5% threshold, if I was sure they were going to get over, I would have voted for them, but as there was a real risk that that might have been a wasted vote in terms of preventing Brash, I got good and drunk on a Saturday morning, toddled off to the voting booth and voted Labour.

  2. Monique Angel

    It makes complete fucking sense. If you move too early you ruin the climax.
    And the powers that be weren’t convinced re Cumliffe so he was never going to be the next leader.
    But yeah, it’s kinda sad the drama ends with C being promoted to the minister of Fish Slices. He gives good face.

    • Frank Macskasy

      Not in this Parallel Universe, Peter.

      By 2014, the Nats will be in the low 40%/high 30%. If you think they’re losing credibility because of unpopular actions, wait till the first state power company is flogged off – and the majority of shares end up with corporate investors rather than National’s mythical MAD (Mum and Dad) creature. Then we’ll see a poll plummet to beat all poll plummets…