We often criticise media coverage of politics, so it’s a pleasure to say something nice.
I would love at this point to link to Martin Kay’s piece in the Dompost yesterday, but it’s not online. Suffice to say it’s a very good piece. Rather than trying to tell people what their opinions should be or concentrating on the game of politics (cf. Armstrong’s disappointing efforts last week), Kay gives a very good analysis of the situation facing the Government and its response so far. It is crammed with facts. There are only two phrases in the whole thing that could be fairly regarded as value-laden or emotive (unfortunately, I can’t quote them) – one is positive for Key and one negative.
Whereas political actors usually look at the media and say ‘sweet, that’s a good piece for us’ ‘crap, that’s bad for us’, I think anyone would struggle to say its a good or bad for either Left or Right. Rather, it’s good for people who want to be better informed about politics and allowed to make up their own minds. That’s as it should be. As I was saying to someone the other day, I would rather see well-argued, fair, factual criticism of the Left than emotive, shallow praise, and the same should go for the Right.
Kay’s article is an example of what political commentary in the nominally objective mainstream media ought to be – informative, fact-driven, focused on the issues, devoid of the little adjectives that are used to cast one side as good and the other as bad.
It’s not hard; it’s not rocket science. It’s bloody good to see it every once in a while.