With unemployment continuing to rise and more heavy downward pressure being applied on wage levels, you would think Labour would be actually enjoying some new and desperately needed popularity. But it isn't.

And its only got itself to blame.

The problem, as it has always been, is that Labour 'going forward' (to use horrible 'managerial speak') isn't offering much more than National. You can have National's blue Cortina or Labour's red Cortina. But its still a Cortina - and the engine is still stuffed.

Despite all the talk from Labour apologists about  'revival'', 'reassessment and 'regrouping', Labour are still  campaigning  on the same set of  economic policies that lost it the last election. Brilliant!

No matter how many times The Standard or Chris Trotter tell us that National are worse than Labour, nobody actually believes them. And why should they  after nine long years of Labour's neoliberalism - the same policies that both The Standard and Trotter chose to largely defend. The political inconsistency is apparent to all.

When it came down to it the Labour leader couldn't find it in  himself to apologise  for Labour's dismal economic policies. Rather Goff  jumped on board the right wing bandwagon about Labour's so-called  nanny state policies - and apologised for the party's  'nanny statism' instead!

That Goff is backed by the Combined Trades Union bureaucracy  is a sad commentary on the state of union politics.

So, as we head toward the end of 2009, Labour are in exactly the same political position they were at the beginning of the year. Labour remains a politically bankrupt party still peddling the snake oil of neoliberalism Guess what? No-one is buying.

On The Standard a few days ago someone was complaining that there was no 'fightback' from Labour. Given that The Standard rarely criticises Labour the comments were surprising in themselves but the writer kind of missed the point anyway.

How can Labour launch any kind of fightback when it has no platform  to  launch a fightback from? Barely distinguishable from National, its  simply  farcical  to campaign on the basis that John Key and National  are up to no good.

It's not good enough for Labour   to decry National's neoliberal policies  while promoting  exactly the same sort of policies itself.

This though appears to be of little consequence to Phil Goff. He thinks that there's no credible alternative to the free market. In Labour there is no place  even for traditional social democratic politics - and 'socialism' is a dirty word.


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