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Not in the public interest

Written By: - Date published: 8:47 am, November 3rd, 2012 - 89 comments
Categories: democratic participation, greens, labour, news, nz first, spin - Tags: , , ,

Some prominent “journalists” are working to undermine a possible Labour-Green government: one that could turn against the neoliberal scam that such “journalists” feed off and promote. They particularly have their knives out for David Cunliffe in case of a Labour leadership change. The left should take heart – the time has come to support the “public interest”, as outlined by Nicky Hager in his significant Jesson lecture this week.  In his terms, the likes of Duncan Garner and Jane Clifton are more PR people than “journalists”; more spin doctors than relentless seekers after half-hidden, and many-sided truths.

Duncan Garner has been one of the most prominent MSM “journalists” to characterise David Cunliffe as not being a team-player. Garner’s position has shifted slightly since Shearer stood for the Labour Party leadership.  Initially, Garner leaned slightly towards Shearer.  He subtly reinforced the “white anting” against Cunliffe by arguing this appeared to be the majority position in the Labour caucus. He left open the possibility of putting pressure on leadership challenges in the future.

Then last August, he came out gunning for Cunliffe, because Garner was now claiming hearsay evidence that Cunliffe was hated within caucus for being lazy and untrustworthy. This week Garner’s line is that Shearer has failed, … but while he puts forward Grant Robertson and Cunliffe as being the only viable leaders, he gives reasons why they aren’t really. Garner doesn’t seem interested in doing in-depth research on Labour leadership issues, or on the public interest in their policies, only in reporting on Labour’s apparent disarray.

Hager said that a good journalist would be on the side of the public. The consequences of a couple of decades of intensive, neoliberal manipulations are that civil society has become broken and demoralised.  Critical voices amongst journalists, economists, and public servants have been marginalised, while those promoting the interests of the powerful elites have been rewarded. Hager convincingly argues that in a democracy, good journalism should take the side of the “public interest” and speak truth to power.

Columnists like Garner and Jane Clifton are too aligned with the interests of the ruling groups, and are not reporting on or in the “public interest”. For instance, they have so far failed to get the bottom of the white anting against Cunliffe.  And their main focus, apart from an occasional cursory nod to views of the public, is on the power games of the political classes.

A succinct and critical tweet doing the rounds on Thursday night, linked Hager’s speech with the “white anting” within Labour:

If Cunliffe and the Labour Party are at odds, does that mean he has more in common with the voting public than they do?

Meanwhile, Jane Clifton unwittingly exposes underlying fears, in her latest column in The NZ Listener.  Like Garner, she acknowledges that Key is on a downer.  But she responds by superficially examining a potential Labour-Green-NZ First coalition.  In the first instance, her evidence is based on seating arrangements and smiles of party leaders at a press conference: the one called to announce the joint parliamentary enquiry on the manufacturing crisis.  This leads her to discount Peters, – well kind of, but not quite.  And then she focuses on a potential Labour-Green coalition highlighting some recent policy differences, and concludes that it will be a fraught business.  Clifton makes a dire prediction:

Despite the personal equanimity of the respective leaderships, this is a relationship that can only get uglier as the election approaches.

And yet, all coalitions have inter-party tensions, and previous MMP governments have shown they can be successfully negotiated. With reference to his book The Hollow Men, Hager indicates how such strategies aim to undermine opposition parties, by endlessly repeating the mis-information of selected spin lines.

The grass roots left should take heart.  The neoliberal columnists are looking a little rattled.  For left-wing activists and others on the side of the public, there’s no problem in acknowledging the challenges. It’s important to subject potential leaders to intense, and honest scrutiny.  However, there should also be as much focus on policies that have most significance for the general public, especially those with least power.  It is public support of those policies that the neoliberal elite fear most, and they aim to mask their real agenda with endless reports of power games and faction fighting.

Cue ‘grass roots’, and concerned members of the public to seek to be better informed, and to make their views heard loud and clear.

89 comments on “Not in the public interest”

  1. PlanetOrphan 1

    Great article Karol, sums up the current circus very well indeed.

    As for leadership …. here’s one I used too tell them ugly Gang Bangers ….

    “We are all Presidents M8!” ;-)

    Worked perfectly on a bunch of anarchists ….

  2. lprent 2

    Meanwhile, Jane Clifton ….. responds by superficially examining a potential Labour-Green-NZ First coalition. In the first instance, her evidence is based on seating arrangements and smiles of party leaders at a press conference: the one called to announce the joint parliamentary enquiry on the manufacturing crisis.

    karol – You were there – do you know if Jane Clifton was? It doesn’t seem like the type of thing that she’d fly up from Wellington to attend.

    Why do I have the strange sensation that we’re developing a group of investigative “journalists” who make grand pronoucements based largely on photo’s

    • PlanetOrphan 2.1

      From Google Maps, To Google Journalism?

    • Colonial Viper 2.2

      Why do I have the strange sensation that we’re developing a group of investigative “journalists” who make grand pronoucements based largely on photo’s

      Well, it’s exactly how you would assess the state of Katie Holme’s desperate love life in New Idea

    • karol 2.3

      That gives new meaning to “photo journalism”, Lynn.
       
      I actually wouldn’t know Clifton if I saw her.  I only know her through her writings, which are more infotainment than analysis. And she had the front to tweet:

      “Dare I say it, Bomber has resigned from The Truth = Slater has improved the MSM already”
       
       

  3. quartz 3

    Love birds on Lambton
    Walking hand-in-hand down Wellington’s Lambton Quay on Thursday were political journalist Jane Clifton and Labour bovver boy Trevor Mallard.
    Clifton, a celebrated Listener columnist, was formerly in a relationship with National’s Murray McCully. Her link to Mallard has been the subject of much tittle-tattle on the political grapevine and around the Beehive corridors. However, the pair are avoiding gossip-mongers. Clifton did not return calls and Mallard hung up on The Diary.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/entertainment/news/article.cfm?c_id=1501119&objectid=10836450 

  4. tc 4

    Clifton dates mccully then mallard, I wonder what does that say about her personality if she’s drawn to these types of men.

    Insecure bullies both of them but probably capable of supplying good material for her right leaning rants.

    We have such a shallow pool of biased PR driven shock jocks and camera jockeys. Loook across the Tasman to see what a real 4th estate looks like. We need a kiwi crikey badly.

  5. Craig Glen Eden 5

    The members of the labour party need to have the biggest say as to who the next leader is not the labour caucus and certainly not the likes of garner Clifton and espiner.

  6. fatty 6

    “Garner doesn’t seem interested in doing in-depth research on Labour leadership issues, or on the public interest in their policies, only in reporting on Labour’s apparent disarray.”

    Yes, Garner only give half information when he has it. The other day when he was reporting about how Cunliffe was blocked from an interview, Garner didn’t say who it was…the result of that is it came across as the whole Labour Party hates Cunliffe.
    Sloppy reporting. Garner either needs to report the facts (he is supposedly a reporter)…or he should STFU and get another job. He needs to look in the mirror and ask himself if he’s a journalist.

  7. OneTrack 7

    Aren’t Garner and Clifton saying exactly what many say on this blog? What they wrote was probably a straight copy and paste of someones post or comment.

  8. Captain Nemo 8

    I’m struggling to see why you expect Garner and Clifton to provide balanced coverage but not the likes of Brown, Campbell or Trotter from the Left. I guess if you read them all then you’d get an overall balanced view.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      We’re not interested in bullshit ideas of “balance” (after all you can balance a pair of scales by shovelling stinking manure on to both sides).

      We’re interested in informative analysis, probing interviews and insightful critique.

      • Captain Nemo 8.1.1

        So ‘balance’ is not desirable? I don’t think many reasonable people would agree with you.

        Sounds like you just want to hear your own views reflected back at you…

        • fatty 8.1.1.1

          By ‘balanced’ do you mean they should critique the red team as much as the blue team?
          Do you hold a ‘balanced’ view of Hitler? – ie, give as much credit to his good policies as his bad…we shouldn’t give equal weight to Hitler’s good polices…no analysis should be balanced, or can be balanced

          • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.1.1

            Nemo’s being deliberately dense. Shovelling stinking shit on to both sides of the scales might be “balanced” but it adds nothing to the insight or critique of a situation.

            • Captain Nemo 8.1.1.1.1.1

              ‘Stinking shit’ were your words not mine Viper – I consider journalists of all persuasions people who I often disagree with, not excrement

              • felix

                No-one said anyone was a pile of stinking shit.

                Your comprehension is though.

                • Colonial Viper

                  And he still managed to avoid the core idea – that “balance” is over-rated and that what we need more of in NZ is in-depth journalistic critique of issues and of politicians.

          • Captain Nemo 8.1.1.1.2

            Are you really comparing either the Red team or the Blue team as you term them to Hitler? I hate think how you’d react if a Hitler like ruler really did get power in NZ

            • Chalupa Batman 8.1.1.1.2.1

              Haven’t you worked it out yet? Balance on this blog means promoting the left and attacking the right.

              • prism

                CBatman
                Where do you get your ideas from? Some form of simple comic? You have been commenting for a while but perhaps you don’t understand the broad nature of thinking that is attempted here.

                • Chalupa Batman

                  Basically the impression one gets is groups of lefties drinking coffee, sitting around tables saying how bad John Key is.

                  Also one person softly weeping saying how he/she really hates him.

                  This is a left-wing blog, by its very nature its not balanced (unbalanced?) so its amusing to read of complaints about right-wing bias

                  • fatty

                    there’s way more critique of Labour on here, than there is of National on kiwiblog and whaleoil. Even of Helen Clarke and the 5th Labour govt. But yeah, it is unbalanced to the left, cause its a left blog

                  • CB that analysis suggests that Peter Dunne is always right because he always straddles the middle …

                  • @ Chalupa Batman

                    I love the way you have ignored CV’s comment above
                    “what we need more of in NZ is in-depth journalistic critique of issues and of politicians.”

                    Journalistic critique of issues being what this thread’s topic emphasized.

                    But hey! If you frame it about “balance” I guess you can avoid talking about the real issue for long enough; and I guess that is all you are here to provide: a dull unsubstantial distraction.

            • blue leopard 8.1.1.1.2.2

              Captain Nemo & Chalupa Batman,

              If someone is lying to the public; how fair do you think this is?

              Do you think the lie should be reported clearly and an analysis provided to inform readers why it is untrue?

              Or do you think it is more fair and balanced for the media to go along with distractions provided by the liar?

              Do you think that a fair and balanced media should simply quote verbatim what the liar says?

              I guess your answer is likely to be determined as to whether you benefit from the lie or not.

              • Captain Nemo

                Blue Leopard

                Not very
                Yes
                No
                No

                • @ Captain Nemo,

                  Thats what I would like the media to provide,
                  Thats what I consider our media are not providing
                  This is why I would not consider the NZ media very fair or balanced over all.

                  • Captain Nemo

                    Blue Leopard

                    Geat – Except the media have never, and will never, provide that – there is no motivation for people working in media to behave in that manner

                    • Captain Nemo

                      “the media have never and will never provide that?”~Captain Nemo

                      No thats simply not true
                      OF course they did, perhaps not perfectly, yet certainly a hell of a lot better than they are doing so now,
                      If you can’t see a degeneration in the manner and substance of information sources over the years then I have to assume you to be a very young person, about 10 years of age, or something.

              • Chalupa Batman

                If someone is lying to the public; how fair do you think this is?
                – Its not fair

                Do you think the lie should be reported clearly and an analysis provided to inform readers why it is untrue?
                -Yes as long as this happens for all parties, to be fair (the Greens in particular get an easy rife from the media is this respect)

                Or do you think it is more fair and balanced for the media to go along with distractions provided by the liar?
                -Not fair but the medias job is not to be distracted

                Do you think that a fair and balanced media should simply quote verbatim what the liar says?
                -No

                • Thanks Chalupa,

                  See above my comment to Nemo.

                  Please note; an example: that over the lies that the P.M was clearly telling over his knowledge of Kim Dotcom, how much more was made of Mr Shearer not having “the tapes”; more so than how due to Mr Shearer mentioning that there were “tapes” pushed Mr Key to change his story and “remember” that he knew about the dude earlier.

                  I consider it of more concern when someone lies and changes his story for an unknown reason and he is the PM of our country than when someone says there is a recording and it doesn’t show up, yet he manages to get more clarity from having done so.

                  Whose agenda does it best serve that focus was placed on Mr Shearer framing him as “mistaken” and having “made a political blunder” over this matter rather than, say, focussing on the truth that his actions managed to bring out and the behaviour of our PM, who was not being straight with us?

                  n.b
                  ~One TV station news coverage was fairer over this than another over this matter.
                  ~”Tape” is unlikely to be accurate in this day and age where cameras store footage on hard drives and memory sticks etc.

                  • Chris

                    Was just thinking that same thing yesterday.There was a mad rush to pillorise Shearer leaving key to get away with all the facts that he had lied about and enabled him to be man of the moment with that stupid widely reported”show me the tape” rubbish.Same with this Beckham business. Online it is all about Beckham and his intelligence,how dumb he is yadayada, not much about key’s absolute inappropriateness(?) to speak like that on a school visit to a young girls school. The man is a menace completely enabled by MSM, Herald in particular (O’sullivan,Armstrong,Young)speaker of the House and some TV reporters. It is time someone of integrity sat down with key and did a real interview,not allowing him to obfuscate,lie and blame others for his own failings ,then we would see the stuttering stammering inarticulate fool that he is, when he is wrong footed.

                    • @Chris

                      I agree with your comments and it is a relief to read them, simply describing the things that are going on helps to take the power away from them. (which is why I like reading comments on The Standard)

                      This reporting style is really rotten, namely, because it works-manipulating opinions-especially those of people too busy to look deeper into what is being said and done to them.

                      Matthew Hooten made comments on The Standard prior to this media fiasco* pillorising Shearer, and predicted this is the way it would go. I didn’t think NZ would be daft enough to get distracted on this one, however it appears the right-wing PR guy knows more about the slant of the media and the level of control right-wing PR has over the media in this country, so his “prediction” was correct.

                      This stinks and I’ve noticed a major deterioration in reporting recently, yet am unsure whether I have only just noticed it and its been bad for a while or not, I believe it wasn’t great prior to National getting in, yet consider the bias “for” the Government has really ramped up under this Government.

                      There are very serious issues arising, and all we get are distractions that, in effect, protects this Government from criticism.

                      * Both Standard Threads Watch Campbell Live at 7pm Thread

                      Also completing the ‘spin’ the next day on The Incredibly Incurious and Forgetful Mr Key Thread

                • fatty

                  “-Yes as long as this happens for all parties, to be fair (the Greens in particular get an easy rife from the media is this respect)”

                  In what way?

                  • Chalupa Batman

                    If National or Labour said or did some of the things the Greens did the MSM would be all over them.

                    The Greens get a ride not even John Key gets (and which Labour can only dream of)

            • felix 8.1.1.1.2.3

              Don’t pretend to be so thick, Nemo. If you can figure out how to connect to the internet then you’ll have no trouble at all understanding the level of the comparison fatty made.

              You know perfectly well it has nothing to do with equating anyone to h1tler and you’re a transparent bore to pretend you don’t.

          • Te Reo Putake 8.1.1.1.3

            Spot on, fatty. It’s a misunderstanding of the principles of journalistic balance that perpetuates the myth the global warming is “controversial” and therefore requires regular appearences by ‘Lord’ Monckton to maintain impartiality. Still, it’s good that the need for balance didn’t require spokesperves from the beastiality community to be given airtime on those recent occasions when animal lover Stuart Murray Wilson was mentioned on the news. Rather grateful for that.

            edit: Nemo, NZ in 1951 was quite literally ruled in a way not at all dissimilar to Germany in the mid thirties.

            • Captain Nemo 8.1.1.1.3.1

              Wow, global warming, bestiality and hitler all in one comment…. Not seeing much evidence of the fabled reasoned analysis there sorry

              • Te Reo Putake

                I’m writing for intelligent readers, Cap’n. They understand what I wrote. You’ll just have to get by as best you can, given your limitations.

                • Captain Nemo

                  But surely TRP your superior logic and communication skills should be able to cross the yawning chasm you believe exists between our intellects, otherwise what is the point of being so talented?

                  • felix

                    Oh look, now you’re all eloquent and shit.

                    So you were just pretending to be thick all along, eh?

                    Such a clever trick you played on us, Nemo, and apart from everyone, you fooled everyone. Fuckwit.

                    • Captain Nemo

                      I think I get how it works now Chalupa Batman.

                      Viper calls journalists ‘stinking shit’ and so Felix calls me a ‘fuckwit’.

                      Makes sense, I guess

                    • felix

                      Except he didn’t.

                      Learn to read, fuckwit.

  9. Huginn 9

    It’s a weird sort of neurotic sort of displacement to stop them having to think too hard about the way that Judith Collins has felt emboldened to bag her boss. Or to ask why she is positioning herself as good on governance.

  10. Stephen Doyle 10

    As a believer in the cock-up theory of history, what I don’t understand is this. If there was a cabal blocking Cunliffe from the leadership, why have they done nothing to support Shearer’s leadership? A cock-up rather than a collusion I suspect.

    • Chalupa Batman 10.1

      I suspect that certain people within the party saw Shearer as an interim leader to get past the next election with the bonus that if he does become leader he can be easily manipulated

      • PlanetOrphan 10.1.1

        I doubt that,
        I’d say they wanted a leader that was an individual.
        What we see is him not some PR machine, he is very much on his own so far.

  11. Well said Karol.  The white anting is driving me and many other activists spare.  I just wish that come within the parliamentary party would concentrate on doing their job.

    • “I just wish that some within the parliamentary party would concentrate on doing their job.”

      +1 It would be nice if some within the Government would concentrate on doing their job too.

      All I’m hearing increasingly from ministers in Government is “Its not my responsibility”, “Its not my job”, “I’m not in a position to say”…

      What’s with this? A general strike in the NZ parliamentary circles perhaps??

      Yes, that must be what it is, I don’t suppose that the NZ parliament going on general strike is “newsworthy” enough (read banal/bloodthirsty) for our media to report.

      Knock knock (on the doors of the Beehive) Hello?? Hello?? Is there anybody in there?
      Sound of a dripping tap from somewhere within

    • Pete Fraser 11.2

      Hahahaha says the man who seems to spend most of his time making approving comments about the latest Shearer-bitchfest, or conspiratorial mutterings about Robertson.

  12. Thanks Karol,

    Glad you have laid emphasis to Nicky Hagar’s speech, it is a goodie and well worth a read. As I said in another thread and repeat here, its just so nice to read something from an informed thinker and which encourages us (and our media) toward using the faculty of discernment.

    • karol 12.1

      Agree on the Hager lecture, bl. I’m sure I will use it as a touchstone in more posts in the future.  I’ve had in mind to do a post on this topic for a while and have been collecting sources and noting some ideas.  But Hager provides so much of the background for what I had in mind.

      • blue leopard 12.1.1

        @ Karol
        Sounds good; it is just so refreshing to read something that arm us with the type of knowledge that allows us to see through the dreadful barrage of games being played on us.

  13. karol 13

    On the notion of “balance” that has been debated above:  I prefer if a writer, journalist or otherwise, states the position they are coming from.  Then I can take it into account when I read or view their stuff.
     
    A good example is David Beaton.  He’s an old style conservative, from pre-neoliberal times.  I always liked watching his Beatson interviews on Stratos, and found them informative.  He was always well-informed on the issues he was interviewing about, and showed an awareness of diverse views on the topic.  It was an sincere attempt to draw ideas and information from the interviewee. 
     
    But these days there’s too much of the commercial imperative.  Too many reporters do a once-over-lightly with an eye on the ratings.  Someone like Garner presents himself as though he’s being objective, while taking a pretty slanted persepctive to the right.  And being on the TV3 evening news makes him quite influential. 
     
    There’s the same trend elsewhere in the world, but in the UK, at least people get a choice between explicitly right and left wing news organisations.  Here, they tend to pass themselves off as non-partisan, often while perpetuating neoliberal values – which have become the dominant values in the MSM.

    • +1

      The presenting of the biassed as non-biassed is the worst aspect of our media and the most prone to persuade people, influence their opinions. We are more vulnerable when we are led to believe that it is “non-biassed”, “commentary”/”analysis” that is being presented to us when, in reality, it really is entirely opinion, biassed or even worse; political party PR managed information

      • Prodigal Son 13.1.1

        Yes but what can you do about it?

        You can’t expect that commercial oganisations are going to act in a non-commercial manner, and you can’t expect that if the media was funded via some kind of central govt manner that people would be any more impartial.

        Not only are people intrinsically not impartial, it would be fanciful to expect that media would bite which ever hand feeds them.

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          None of what you write makes any sense.

          Of course people can develop and write news stories which are impartial. It’s been done for hundreds of years.

          You can’t expect that commercial oganisations are going to act in a non-commercial manner

          Of course you can. You do this by making at least part of their mandate non-commercial. Eg. making the lead into 6pm and the news hour that follows 100% commercial free.

          it would be fanciful to expect that media would bite which ever hand feeds them.

          Not at all. Just pass laws making it illegal to publish misleading or untrue news.

          • Prodigal Son 13.1.1.1.1

            What, so you would solve the probblem by making the commercial organisation no longer fully commercial? Which commercial media organisation do you think would accept that? Spectaculat failure for TVNZ wasn’t it?

            And then you’d ask pollies to pass laws that insisted the media to tell the truth, whereby less power to the pollies who like to manipulate the media

            Try again sorry, it’s you who is not making any sense.

            • blue leopard 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Nope, Prodigal Son,

              You fail to address CV’s first sentence.

              Of course people can develop and write news stories which are impartial. It’s been done for hundreds of years.

              In other words there is historical precedence to prove that your comments at 13.1.1 are completely fallacious.

              What advantage do you get from writing such measly views that support vested money interests?

            • xtasy 13.1.1.1.1.2

              Prodigal Son:

              “What, so you would solve the probblem by making the commercial organisation no longer fully commercial? Which commercial media organisation do you think would accept that? Spectaculat failure for TVNZ wasn’t it?”

              Come on, you must be of a “young” and “fresh” age to comment like this. TVNZ was initially intended to be a state broadcaster and did just that for many, many years. Also did TVNZ over the years, partly in co-operation with private producers, make some top rate nature and other documentaries.

              What went wrong with TVNZ was, when governments started to pull the plug and told them to operate more like “commercial” competitors, earn revenue through more advertising and so forth. That led to the total demise of TVNZ, as it has become a state owned SOE broadcaster, supposed to run at the same level of TV3, Sky and so forth. Naturally standards dropped, as others broadcast heaps of trash and repeats, lots of movies and low level entertainment, which though got enough interested to digest it, so TVNZ was forced to down scale on quality, same as the “private” competitors. This is not a NZ phenomenon by the way, it has happend world wide.

            • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1.1.3

              Which commercial media organisation do you think would accept that?

              well, if they don’t accept the laws of the land they can always shut down or their directors can face prosecution.

              And then you’d ask pollies to pass laws that insisted the media to tell the truth, whereby less power to the pollies who like to manipulate the media

              Uh what

            • xtasy 13.1.1.1.1.4

              Prodigal Son:
              “And then you’d ask pollies to pass laws that insisted the media to tell the truth, whereby less power to the pollies who like to manipulate the media”

              Seems to me, as if you are almost happy with the lying lot of pollies we have!? Stand up for that, yeah right!

  14. lurgee 14

    So, Garner and Clifton are doing precisely what’ been going on here – undermining Shearer and speculating about the next leader.

    Don’t you get it that if Shearer is rolled by Cunliffe, then Robertson’s faction will immediately start undermining him? And so on, and so forth?

    Tonight (hopefully for one night only) I think the Labour Party is actually doomed. It’s been colonised by professional politicians who are only interested in squabbling and scheming their way into the top job. The current lot make Phil Goff look like a man of profound socialist principle. Can. Not. Believe. I. Just. Typed. That.

    But it’s still true, isn’t it?

    • Jim Nald 14.1

      And of course Shearer does offer himself plenty of opportunities for people to undermine, erm, point out, how good, erm, poor he is.

    • PlanetOrphan 14.2

      Don’t worry,
      Qot said I’m the leader now …. it’s a 90 day trial or your other arm contract ….
      I’m a “Winner” now! :-D

      How many arms u got M8, you should sign up if u r qualified!.
      (i.e not armless)

      Become a citizen tooday, join the corps and kill some bugs today M8!

      Oh shit sorry M8, didn’t realise … here stick that between ya teeth it’s the “I’ve got legs and can walk” union pamphlet.

      Ya gotta love them pollies M8, gotta pamphlet for everyone!.

    • karol 14.3

      There is a difference, lurgee.
       
      Garner has accepted the content of Team Shearer’s white anting and repeated it uncritically.  He makes no attempt to call them on their hypocrisy of “sneakily” going to the press to smear Cunliffe as “sneaky and lazy”.  Garner made no attempt to get to the bottom of it by doing his own in-depth investigation. 
       
      This is similar to what too many reporters do these days: just repeat press releases uncritically, and without doing any further investigation.  They will off course, add in selected comments from opposition press releases, but too often it is done with a slant to the neoliberal right.  Partly this is because they have absorbed neoliberal values and are not self-critical enough to be aware of what they are doing.
       
      Meanwhile Team Cunliffe are not giving their version or sneaking to the press to smear Shearer.  And Clifton is just smearing a potential Labour-Green alliance based on very flimsy analysis and evidence.
       
      And quite a few people here are looking more deeply into the issue, wanting to know exactly what is going on with Labour and why.  And they are analysing for themselves the content of what Shearer and Cunliffe etc say.  And anlaysing the statements related to policy, or general direction the policy will take.  They are also criticially weighing up a likely Labour-Green alliance.

      • Pete Fraser 14.3.1

        This Just Isn’t True — you only need to look at Presland’s blog, for instance, to see a Cunliffe supporter merrily smearing away at Shearer, Robertson, the majority of caucus, etc etc.

        (Or this blog — how many rants about the ABC faction? I mean, look at QoT’s (quite funny) post below, right? If this blog goes a week without a hysterically pro-Cunliffe attack on Shearer, I get worried there’s been a plague in West Auckland.)

        • PlanetOrphan 14.3.1.1

          It almost sounds like you’d prefer silence to any kind of debate or critique Pete.
          You must read this and other blogs for a reason ?
          Probably the same reason everyone does.

          • Pete Fraser 14.3.1.1.1

            I don’t mind debate, and I don’t mind critique; I just don’t like sanctimony and entitlement on display here.

            • PlanetOrphan 14.3.1.1.1.1

              I inderstand, but words let most people here down, they’re just expressing their own lives.
              A lot of readers seem to think the comments here are “Political” and forget politics is about people.
              An old saying use to be “Religion is for the Heart and Politics is for the mind”
              Unfortunately in NZ politics caters to both, hence the rhetoric.

  15. xtasy 15

    I dare to say, that I can count the “good” quality journalists in NZ, that are actually still in their jobs, on ONE HAND!

    It would not be more than that. The rest are wannabes, swift journo course grad career hunters, slimers, shallow operators, swift to gain a story by whatever means, twisting the facts a bit by selective choice, and never able or willing to spend much time at all on one single news item.

    That is why you get a lot of snippets and small bites, nothing much of substance.

    Gosh, what was it just a couple of decades ago? Journalism was still a profession, they had their press club, you could meet some really interesting people there, they also went to certain watering holes in the city, it was a different world.

    Now it is all gloss, shine, slime and nothing behind! I HATE it. Mass media is like endless, all night or 24/7 mental and emotional diarrhea.

    • kousei 15.1

      And too much shallow ideologically opinionated drivel masquerading as journalism. Don’t really mind opinion per se but for fucksake back it up with some research and a solid arguement..

      • xtasy 15.1.1

        Fran O Sullivan, John Armstrong, et al, they are just some drivel feeding pseudo journalists, and they are not even the worst. Duncan Garner, Pat Gower, the silly lot at TVNZ, they all more or less fall into this category of obsolete idiots. So you must be one of the brigade of sell-out journos, am I not right? As long as the layer of butter is fat on your bread, you will write and talk as is expected, no matter what the truth is. Go to hell if you are a journo trying to defend this crap!

        • karol 15.1.1.1

          the silly lot at TVNZ,
           
          And lookee here:  big pay rises for top TVNZ people….. shame on the once-were-public-service-broadcasters!  From the Scoop Team:
           

          A sharp rise in the number of high earners at TVNZ is revealed in the crown-owned television company’s 2011-12 annual report.

          The number of employees in the $100,000-$120,000pa bracket has jumped from 73 to 87, an increase of just under 20% in a year.

          Of the 87 employees in that salary range, 56 earned $100,000-$110,000 and 31 were on $110,001-$120,000. The comparable figures in 2010-2011 were 41 and 32, hinting at a big boost in numbers and pay for the broadcaster’s middle management.

           
          Though the CEO is not earning as much as Ellis was getting by the time he left.

        • kousei 15.1.1.2

          Whoa, I’m right with you. I read the Standard because there are some knowledgable and thought provoking people on here. Dead right about sycophants Garner, Gower.

          • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.2.1

            The thing about Garner is that he could easily do far better work. But basically he’s sold out to what is easy and helps him get along with his mates.

  16. xtasy 16

    Add: Claire Trevett, Audrey Young, Diane Clement, Paul Thomas, John Roughan, Tracey Barnett, even Kate Shuttle(un)worth, that is just a few from the Herald, mostly writing drivel and shallow nonsense, nothing much with substance and of any relevance for NZers and what this country should be concerned about. Add also: Andrea Vance, Tracey Chatterton (what a name), Nicole Pryor, and a few others from SST. There are many on TV that are under performing, rather glamouring their own profiles for future commercial interests like ever so polished Jack Tame now in USA. God, I hate that face.

    That is NZ media 2012, just a snapshot, as there are a number of others well fitting the self serving careerist mould of sell your soul to pay off you mansion on the hill kinds of types. Add the manicured, pampered, overpaid newsreaders on the prime time news channels by the way. Send them off to a farm to learn milking and cutting gorse, just to get a taste of real life for a change, perhaps. That is my rant on this topic for tonight. Do not make me more angry, and more will come!

    • karol 16.1

      There are many on TV that are under performing,
       
      Meanwhile, the TV awards for best TV news etc, were given out last night – and the competition was largely between TVNZ and TV3….. the exception is a well-deserved award for Maori TV.
       

      Best Scheduled News Programme – 3 News
      Best News or Current Affairs Presenter – Julian Wilcox, Political All In (Native Affairs, Maori TV)
      Journalist of the Year – Melanie Reid, Eye of the Storm (60 Minutes)
      Best News Reporting – Duncan Garner and Patrick Gower, Secret Tea Tapes (3 News)
      Best Current Affairs Series – 60 Minutes (TV3)
      Investigation of the Year – Melanie Reid and Eugene Bingham, The Eye of the Storm (60 Minutes)
      Best Current Affairs Reporting for a Weekly Programme or One-Off Current Affairs Special – Mark Crysell and Julie Clothier – Cherry Blossom Tragedy (Sunday)
      Best Current Affairs Reporting for a Daily Programme – Gill Higgins and Chris Lynch, Online Predators (Close Up)
      Best Breaking News Coverage – One News, Carterton Ballooning Tragedy

       
      Note all the awards for hard-hitting and critical treatment of political stories!

      • xtasy 16.1.1

        You have to put the awards into some fair and real perspective, Karol.

        When compared with One News, or worse even Prime News, there is only really 3 News left for NZ television media, apart from what else there may be on commercial pay tv Sky.

        So 3 News won easily, but that does not mean automatically it is all that great either. Sometimes, I admit, they have good news programs with interesting, vaild topics.

        We know how one-sided Duncan Garner can present news, so I am not impressed with him. The “Tea Tapes” seem to have given him and Gower some credit, but what else is there?

        ’60 minutes’ did certainly present the best documentary and expose under Melanie Reid, and she did a great job on the ACC privacy and hatchet doctor exposures. But apart from that and a few other, rare good stories on that show, I see heaps of trivial crap too, which I would not even consider current affairs in some cases. ‘Sunday’ on TVNZ’s One is about to be shut down, and so only TV3 will have something on at Sunday nights.

        As terrible and tragic the Carterton Balloon accident was, I thought there may have been other stories more deserving for ‘Best Breaking News Coverage’.

        I am thoroughly UNIMPRESSED with the television media in NZ, and the rare good stories mentioned (3 News and 60 minutes taking up most awards) do not change my views.

    • Julian Haworth 16.2

      Totally agree with Jack Tame comment. Imagine what he’ll be like when he grows up!

  17. Shaz 17

    In one sense Jane Clifton is right to allude to the likelihood that “the Relationship can only get uglier as the election approaches”. There are some fault lines between Labour and the Green Party not least of which are the approach to monetary policy (Chris Trotter has covered this) and what seems to be Labour’s reckless attitude to the so called free trade agreement in the form of the TPP. My sense on both of these is that it is Labour that needs to move away urgently from it’s remaining 1980s neo-liberal heritage. I’m also disappointed that Labour is not under-cutting NZ First by being “for New Zealand and New Zealanders and against wholesale foreign ownership and further opportunities to take profits off-shore ” in a progressive and anti-racist way. Done properly NZ First could become of historical interest by 2014.

  18. Jeez, paranoid. Much?
    You superhuman geniuses do realise that Clifton is in a public relationship with Mallard.
    When fairfax group editors get together they stop just short of burning effigies of John Key.
    It may not have occurred to you lot that when the left and right moan about media bias then they might actually be sitting somewhere in the middle.
    Which of course they aren’t because they barely scratch the surface on matters that make Labour look bad. Other than white anting Shearer of course. That has taken over from drink driving as the national past time du jour.

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      Forget “media bias” just trying to get journalists to ask decent interrogative questions without plastering their own BS spin on everything would be a start.

    • felix 18.2

      No Bill, that’s retarded. As CV put it, a steaming pile of shit on each side of the scale gives “balance” too, but it doesn’t give anything else.

      Of course if you’d read the post, any of the links, or any of the comments you would’ve realised that the discussion is well beyond your silly “balance” games.

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    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Patrick Gower interviews Social Housing Minister
    Bennett says National could sell off “thousands” of state houses but Housing NZ will still be the “dominant force” in providing social housing in NZ....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • The Nation: Lisa Owen interviews Mike Moore & Chris Liddell
    Lisa Owen interviews NZ Ambassador to the US Mike Moore and corporate high-flyer Chris Liddell about the US midterm elections....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • David Parker event – the future of work, Sun 2 Nov
    Labour leadership candidate David Parker, an experienced lawyer and businessman as well as a former senior government cabinet minister in the Helen Clark Government, will join three prominent New Zealanders in a panel discussion on Sunday to address...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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