On campaigning

There is much talk about campaigning. New Zealand tends to follow along about 5 years behind the US and the UK in terms of political campaigning. Perhaps longer if an opposition is inept.

The left, and in New Zealand that mostly means the Labour party hate how campaigning is changing. They wish that political parties could be state funded and pesky things such as campaigns could be batted away.

Andrew Sullivan has a post about Campaigns are the Opiate of the Masses and ends it with this comment:

The rage on the left is real, isn’t it? But when picked apart, the outrage against campaigns is surely excessive. Campaigns are probably the most effective criticism of those in power, because they target a leader at his or her most vulnerable and because everyone running against him or her has an incentive to expose and attack. The catastrophe of the Bush legacy was, for example, fully and expansively laid out in the campaign for 2008…

But the media is following the democracy, not the other way round.

This is perhaps one of the best explanations of what campaigns are supposed to be all about. It is certainly how I have mapped out my own?personal?election campaign this year. It also explains the bizarre and disgraceful series of posts that Trevor Mallard posted on Red Alert attacking personally successful campaigners.

Labour’s problem is that they have capable and competent campaigners that follow the leading edge in campaigning, except they haven’t hired them, instead they have gone with the failures of the past.