I love watching Labour Party centrist strategists, Josie and John Pagani fight with The Standard.
The left do bitchy better than anyone else. The friction between those trying to drag Labour to the right to chase National voters and the activist base who want a real left wing party is finally being articulated in public about 6 months after Tumeke pointed it out.
Better late then never I suppose.
What I honestly don't understand is why Labour are listening to the Pagani's and not to The Standard. While The Standard has me rolling my eyes at times with some of the defense they run, they are far more on the money than bloody John or Josie Pagani. The Standard have hundreds of thousands of hits per month and have a far better idea of the pulse of the nation than the average back bench Labour MP.
Watching John attack The Standard in the Listener this week shows how far out of touch the Labour Party strategists have become...
Then again, as left-leaning political-consultant-turned-commentator John Pagani notes, Farrar’s apparently easygoing tone might be among his greatest advantages. “He has a more reasonable tone than, say, the left blog the Standard, whose idea of political is embittered and angry and it’s therefore hard to read,” says Pagani
...whoever thought we would see the day when a Labour Party spokesperson was bagging The Standard while praising the right wings most insidious pollster? The funniest thing about that article is that Pagani is described as 'left-leaning'.
The Pagani Doctrine and its terrible weaknesses have been pointed out a couple of hundred times here, but it's worth repeating that chasing National Party voters is about as pointless for Labour as chasing the mythical 'blue green' vote is for the Greens. It is the 800 000 registered voters who didn't vote that Labour need to chase, not National Party voters who have bought Key's empty aspiration hook line and sinker.
Josie even goes as far as attacking my argument that the 800 000 enrolled voters who didn't vote were mainly left wing supporters, the fact Labour sunk to 27% screams to the highest mountain that the majority of those voters were former Labour Party voters.
Labour doesn't need to eat into Green Party votes if they stick to articulating a new economic model that challenges the neo-liberal model National champions. The economic environment is closer to meltdown than the actual environment.
As Brian Easton points out...
The global economy is already in its fifth year of stagnation, and there is little sign of its end. But a neo-liberal response to the crisis hardly exists – I don’t think charter schools are going to resolve it.
That hasn't stopped the swing to the right Shearer's leadership has brought about. The problems for Shearer are...
a) his lack of confidence
b) his inability to express an opinion without contradicting it (when asked today by journalists if Mr Shearer was not connecting with voters - his answer was "I do not believe I am not not connecting")
c) his attempt to adopt 3rd way Pagani nonsense for welfare by having a go at beneficiaries added to David Parker's speech to financial elites where he told them telecommunications and energy production would not be regulated or on the list of assets to be saved
d) a total inability to voice an alternative economic direction
...which all combines to leave a bitter after taste in many rank and file Labour supporters mouths.
It is these supporters who must get so angry with the Party that they demand a new leader at conference in November because if such a rank and file backlash is not forthcoming the reality is that the Labour Caucus is simply too weak to make the change themselves and will stick with Shearer all the way to the 2014 election.
If the Caucus wouldn't dump Goff, they are too dumbstruck by indecision to dump Shearer.
Shearer's lack of political traction must be blamed on the Pagani Doctrine - if Labour don't get Shearer better political advisors, they will lose 2014.
The silver lining is that early this week, feelers were coming out from the Party towards some left wing strategists as the concerns continue to mount and they would do well to start listening.