Labour Stumbles Back Into The Unhappy Shire

It is very early days. But the new government looks headed for a fall in its relationship with mainstream media. They talk to the whole country, not just the true believers.

That includes the 44 per cent of the country that did not vote for Labour, the Greens or New Zealand First.

She needs to listen to the sceptics.

As it stands, Labour seems to be entranced by the euphoria of MPs and activists who are enjoying a new taste of power.

But the Government has to represent the whole country and it needs to stop ignoring sceptics.

Two incidents have highlighted  the problem in the early since the coalition was unveiled.

The Government appears to be ignoring political and media management over contentious policies

The first was the announcement of the Auckland petrol tax and the second is the implementing a reversal of the Hobbit Law,.

In both cases  Labour has charged ahead to implement policies without selling them.


Post election it appears the new Government sees no role in selling policies to the public in general – let alone those who did not vote for them.

Lets face it. A lot of us did not expect Labour or the Greens to be in government.

Ofhand. Iain Lees Galloway has restarted a war in the film industry.

Advancing their policies is one thing. But Labour needs to take the public with them.

Traditionally unfriendly groups like farmers and employers are starting to be wary/ Personally, I am ambivalent about both the petrol tax and the reversal of the Hobbit law.

Like anybody who travels on Auckland roads, I accept there have to be urgent improve public transport and get people off the road.

One obvious solution is to put 10 cent surcharge on Auckland petrol sales.

Light Rail seems good. But will it clear the roads?

But like a lot of people I know, I’m not sold on the idea that Light Rail to the airport will solve the problems.

It’s fanbase may be keen,, but Labour still needs to sell the idea .

Phil Goff likes it. Transport policy wonks Greater Auckland promote it. Some media like The Spinoff sells it.

Labour seems unconcerned about public opinion is the removal of the so called Hobbit Law.

The 2010 law shut unions out of collecting collective agreements film industry. It followed a vicious and contentious campaign by Warner Bros and the Peter Jackson organisation which organised marches in the street.

Threatened with Warner Bros pulling the Hobbit out of NZ, John Key changed our laws to suit.

Since 2011 Labour has had a policy on the books to reverse the law.

This week Iain Lees Galloway it jumped in straight away to say that the Hobbit will gone within 100 days.

This will please the CTU and the activists like Robyn Malcolm who campaigned against it. But the new government has resumed split the film industry,

Labour has bought a fight with Peter Jackson

There point of principle. Laws should not be for sale.

But Labour seems uninterested in whether there are ways to reduce the impact

Will it increase costs in multi-billion industry and discourage overseas investments.

How can they ensure that the film industry adjusts to it.

Peter Jackson and the production industry will be deciding whether to threaten the new Government.

Or whether to schmooze the government.

Labour has to talk and not just please its activists.


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