During the Waiheke Local Board election I had the pleasure of working with the Essentially Waiheke team to win the Waiheke Local Board election. The Essentially Waiheke team (Paul, John, Beatle and Becs) plus Shirin. Made a clean sweep in the local elections and removed 4 out of 5 of the previous board members.
My role in the whole thing was making the Essentially Waiheke website and managing the social media. I found it a really good experience working with a team to win the campaign. Most of the former board members have taken defeat gracefully to their credit. However one former board member in particular appears to have some sour grapes and not just sour but bitter, twisted and sour grapes.
Ungraceful Former Local Board Member
One ungraceful former board member has setup a blog and Facebook page which continually opposes whatever the current local board does, even if it is good for the community and continually spread misinformation and what can only be called lies and rumours in an vain attempt to turn people against the current local board. These were the same techniques that they used during the local board elections – it did not work then and it is not working now.
After the election I believed that this behaviour would stop, well at least ease back till 12 to 18 months out from the next election. I was wrong, it really is a continuous barrage. I have to say that all that they are achieving with this type of behaviour is a confirmation to the general public of Waiheke that voting them out of the local board was the best thing that they could of possible done.
I would like to say that my efforts went a long way to get the Essentially Waiheke campaign team to win but after analysing the whole situation I came to the conclusion that this former board was very unpopular and would not get voted back in because of the following.
- Firstly they got voted in with a minority of votes because the votes were then split between some really good people.
- They then disgraced themselves with the way that the Chair of the board was chosen and the side-lining of Denise Roche when she got a majority of votes.
- I heard all sorts of stories which may or may not be true of funding cuts, issues with resource consents and general opposition from the council for anyone that opposed what the previous local board did in anyway shape or form.
- They then appeared to make a lot of controversial decisions which went against what the public Waiheke wanted and appeared to have hidden agendas with very little transparency.
- They disgraced themselves again with the way they side-lined Paul Walden after he won the Waiheke Local Board by election.
- They then did not participate in public campaigning meetings.
- They sent spam out as part of their local board campaign.
If I did not know better, I would of thought that they did not want to get elected back onto the local board. So all I can conclude is that they got themselves voted out, all the Essentially Waiheke team had to do is put a half decent team together to oppose the previous board members and it worked a charm – a clean sweep. As a side note the current local board is not half decent but really a great bunch who want to work together for a better Waiheke.
This continuous barrage of misinformation and sour grapes does nothing but discredits the one sending it
This continuous barrage of misinformation and sour grapes does nothing but discredits the one sending it so I have not even bothered to comment or engage in it till now. The only conclusion that I can come to is that the reason for this constant misinformation and opposition to whatever the local board does is because members of the ousted local board want to get voted back in, in the next local board election.
As a recap – they got voted in with a minority of the votes because of vote splitting, they then lost approximately 30% of their voting support base in the most recent election, they do nothing positive for Waiheke to date except oppose whatever the new local board does. So they really are deluded when they believe that they will ever get voted back in.
What can you do to stop the spread of misinformation?
- Block anyone spreading misinformation on Facebook
- Never comment on misinformation, even if it is to correct as this helps spread it
- Don’t visit any blogs spreading misinformation
- Remove yourself from any Facebook groups / pages that spread misinformation
- Then tell your friends to do the same
By allowing yourself to read this stuff and even commenting on it actually helps the spread of it. All they want is an audience so if you remove yourself and encourage others to do the same you can help minimise the spread of this garbage.
Written By Dan Ballard,