Home > The Body Politic > As predictable as the rising sun

As predictable as the rising sun



As previously posted on 6 September,

“With low polling and redundancies dominating the headlines, National has cast about for another dog-whistle to distract the easily-led Middle class.

They’ve done the unemployed and solo-mums (but never solo dads) “to death”.

Next minority on the List; Maori.

Cue: John Key’s derisory response to the upcoming nationwide  hui on water rights,

The Government does not believe there should be a national hui; does not believe there should be a national settlement and it probably would not recognise all of the rights and interests that some Maori groups believe they have.

If the Crown was to be represented at the hui, and it wont be, because we’ve said were not having a national hui, we don’t support that…if you are an MP in the government you represent the Crown and any representation by my MPs at such an event would be interpreted as representation by the Crown.

I’ve made that position absolutely crystal clear..I do not accept the view that there needs to be a national hui, because I do not accept there will be a national settlement, because I do not accept it’s a national issue.”

See: Key – Government won’t go to water hui


Almost as good as bene-bashing.

Or “get tough on crime/crush cars” rhetoric.

“Standing tough” with Maori “demands” for water rights will probably work a treat with racist rednecks and low-information voters.  With the former, their racism is deeply ingrained and such ignorance can be written of like the forty-plus financial companies that sucked billions out of mums and dads investors.

With the latter, it is a matter of education and dispelling myths and prejudice, before people’s  eyes eventually open and they connect-the-dots.

National will probably rebound in the polls on this strategy.

See blogpost: National in trouble? Time to dog-whistle the Middle Class!

It appears that my prediction has come true and  the latest Herald-Digipoll shows a slight “burp” in  National’s poll rating.

Support for National has risen marginally by 0.4% – a barely discernible rise for the Party,




The slight rise in support for National is due in no small part to their redneck dog-whistling; opposition to Maori water-rights claims; beneficiary bashing; and suchlike.

This kind of support is a kneejerk reaction and can be comfortably ignored. People eventually look for a government that offers positive messages – not constant negatives.

By contrast, Labour has dropped in the polls by 2%. But it can take heart that the move has gone to NZ First (1.1%)and predominantly the Greens (1.6%). (This poll was taken before Shearer announced Labour’s Food in Schools policy.)

The increased support for the Greens should reinforce Labour’s move to the centre-Left, and confidently abandon all pretenses of adopting a “National-lite” mirror-image.

For Labour to rise in the polls, they need only stay true to their roots  and raison d’être – as the conscience and humane face of New Zealand society.

Likewise there is room for only one hard-arsed, neo-liberal obsessed, bene-bashing Party in this country, and that segment of the political spectrum is firmly inhabited by the National Party.

Labour’s path is clear; reassert it’s moral leadership on the political spectrum and reach out to every sector of New Zealand society.

Offer New Zealanders a clear path; more of the same of National’s unworkable policies; or something better. Something that encapsulates New Zealanders’ sense of fairness.



= fs =

  1. John B
    11 September 2012 at 6:34 pm

    they only talk to 0.1 percent of the people as everyone else knows its rigged

  2. 11 September 2012 at 7:29 pm

    Indeed, John. They certainly don’t phone people without landlines and who may only have access to mobile phones. That’s one reason these polls aren’t as accurate as some make out. About 20 years ago, companies like MRL Research used to go door-to-door to gather polling data. It meant that respondents could be polled regardless of whether or not they had a phone./

    Interestingly, MRL also tested a new polling system (developed by Massey Uni, if I recall correctly) )whereby a responent was first verbally asked which Party they supported. At the end of the verbal questions, the respondent was then handed a ballot paper; asked to mark their voting preference; fold and place it in a sealed envelope; and drop that sealed envelope into a sealed bag (similar to what some charity collectors used to use.)

    From what I was told, the PAPER-based poll was more accurate than asking a verbal question regarding who someone might vote for. Some respondents have have been too embarressed to reveal who they actually preferred as a candidate. (This was pre-MMP era.)

  3. John B
    11 September 2012 at 7:35 pm

    they did a poll once that should most polls are always answered by the same people

  4. 11 September 2012 at 7:40 pm

    That may well be correct, John. The previous house I lived in was regularly phoned by pollsters. (Probably once every couple of months?)

    I haven’t been phoned ONCE in my current home, in the last seven years…

  5. foxed
    14 September 2012 at 10:45 pm

    most polls are biased towards a set result. limiting those you poll and questioning in a way that causes the respondent to answer in a particular way. Worked in market resurce finding flaws in questionnaires, often got ignored because i noticed too many and got good at predicting the results people would give. my observations i notice , got used to shape questionnaires down a desired track.

  6. 15 September 2012 at 9:46 am

    Quite true, Foxed. I suspect asking a question about selling down 49% od state assets can be framed either as “Would you support a Mixed Ownership Model for mums and dads to invest in?” vs “Would you support privatising 49% of our publicly owned state assets?” – would get quite different results…

  1. 25 September 2012 at 12:30 am

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