National knows that the public oppose its agenda of asset sales, lower wages, and service cuts. So they’re going to campaign dirty. They’re running this week’s muck-throwing via sickness beneficiary* Cameron Slater. The Nats breached the Labour Party website and stole a list of online donors. Hardly the stuff of scandal, just an attempt to intimidate.
Slater is going to publish that list and other things like blank candidate forms and, from this, try to concoct one of his conspiracy theories -you know, the ones he runs every couple of months that never go anywhere.
The real goal, from the point of view of Slater’s controllers, like Jason Ede and Simon Lusk, is to try to scare off Labour donors and activists. National’s been playing that game for generations, of course, only the technology has changed.
Labour is naturally aghast at this private data being taken and have identified the security hole that let it happen but it’s hardly their fault. If you don’t bolt all your windows it doesn’t change the fact that the guy who breaks in and takes your stuff is a thief.
Oh dear. How short the memories of those bloggers and Labour Party activists that comprise the team at The Standard are. They were so delighted when Nicky Hager wrote The Hollow Men that they were STILL talking about it years later; even today. Hager was a hero of the left for his expose which was, of course, based on e-mails stolen from Don Brash. We certainly didn't see anyone on that side of the political divide accusing Hager of being a crook.
So Eddie's outrage today is really amusing, when one considers what fellow Standard blogger Irish Bill said just before the 2008 election:
A friend has just rung to excitedly inform me that National’s conservation policy has now also been released by Trevor Mallard.
That means there is officially a leak in the National Party caucus.
I expect in the next hour or so the Nats are going to start their misdirection campaign and I expect it will include lines like ‘this has been stolen from us’, ‘the Prime Minister must tell us what her involvement is’ and ‘we are the victims of theft and will be bringing the police into this’.
In short, they will do anything they can to direct the story away from the real issue, which is who is leaking from their caucus and what this means for John Key and his leadership.
We’ve seen this Crosby Textor tactic over and over again and we’ve seen the media buy it over and over again.
They bought the “stolen emails” misdirection during the Hollow Men scandal (even though the documents included diary entries and a handwritten fax)
They bought the “dirty tricks” misdirection during the secret agenda scandal (even though the Nats were secretly interrogating and vetting their own activists)
They even started to buy the carefully arranged rubbish misdirection until the absurdity of it was pointed out by various MPs and blogs.
So in a few hours when National try to cry wolf again will the media swallow it?
Oh dear; who's crying "dirty tricks" tonight Eddie? Egg; meet face!