As politics grapples with the awesome power of the 'Net' in delivery of the 'message', it swings violently from a powerful tool to a serious problem.
The Soviets failed to deal with it and the "wall" came down; Mubarak failed and now languishes in a cell; Gadaffi similarly and is at present AWOL; and Assad in Syria still thinks it wont happen, Ha ha ha.
The socialists have made attempts to employ the power but it is not that simple. The Party has established a propaganda arm with "Red Alert" but, unlike old Uncle Micky Joe gazing benignly from a framed picture on the living-room wall while the dulcet tones came from the wireless, the intimacy is now destroyed as the listener can come back in spades on the 'Net', and it's a "party line" you know where you can answer back.
The great power of propaganda relies on a repetitive message being delivered and regardless of the veracity or rightness of the message, as Goebbels claimed, eventually it can become 'the truth' and, with a limited ability of a contrary view, it will germinate and grow. However, not in the dark. Eventually growing things by and large need light.
Over at 'Red Alert' and its sister 'The Standard', the blog admin cannot accept the tenet of democracy, that all will not fall into line but some need to be won over, so they clumsily use the only tools of control, "moderation' and ultimately "banning," to their increasing dismay at the outcome as evidenced in the polls.
Inventory 2 of 'Keeping Stock' has suffered that fate at The Standard" a while ago and yesterday suffered the ultimate sanction at "The Red Rag". Now Iv2 puts up with some doozies at his place and is patient to a fault and it takes a lot to get him to "deletion mode", so it is a complete nonsense to employ such a sanction when his crime was only to point out a fact of historical record.
"Phil Goff was a member of the Cabinet that carried out the greatest sell off of State Owned Assets in our nations history".
One of the more annoying things of advancing years, as my Dad often pointed out, is one's skin becomes increasingly thin and vulnerable to major tracts being removed by the merest contact with an object. In my own case, while assisting family in The Bay last weekend, my pate came into contact with the safety frame of SiL's tractor and removed a portion of scalp with much accompanying blood loss.
Now it is becoming increasingly obvious that as the N Z Labour Party closes in on its 100th birthday, c2016, its skin is becoming increasingly fragile. I have not yet reached Iv2's exalted status of being "banned" at the two premier socialist blogs but I am in a moderation status at both, and DILLIGAF.
If they wish to reach out to the wider audience where their efforts will move from a closed back slapping gung ho echo chamber, to the voters they so desperately need to attract, they will need to adapt and there is precious little evidence of that. Clare, Trevor, lprent et al need to stop shooting messengers as at present there are just too many of them and many have a valid contrary point of view so the old ratio of two ears and one mouth comes to bear.