Campbell grills Peter Brown

Written By: - Date published: 12:22 pm, April 3rd, 2008 - 60 comments
Categories: Media, nz first, racism - Tags: , ,

Now this is what Campbell needs to do more of. Last night the man ripped poor old Peter Brown to shreds over his racist comments about Asian immigrants, and it was brutal. You almost had to feel sorry for the guy:

60 comments on “Campbell grills Peter Brown”

  1. BeShakey 1

    Some of it was great – highlighting the actual Stats NZ data and contrasting itwith Brown’s assertions. But there were bits that were pretty bad – he asked Brown questions and then interupted when Brown tried to answer, and he also misrepresented some of what Brown said.

    It was a vast improvement over much of what we see on TV, but I don’t think we should be too liberal with our praise when their were also significant flaws in the interview.

  2. Matthew Pilott 2

    I can’t get that video to work here, but I watched it last night. Memorable moment (from memory):

    Brown: there will be 400,000 more asian immmigrants here by 2025.

    Campbell: 100,000 of them will be born here! You know that! It’s right here!

    Brown: *pauses*… Yes, but…

  3. Tane 3

    True, true, but it sure makes a change from cats up trees and Jackie Brown reviewing shoes.

  4. As the Steinlager ad says, “It’s good to see you take a stand where it counts”!

    I am calling on Helen Clark to sack Peters as Foreign Minister, or to demand his resignation – if she doesn’t, she runs the risk of being tarred with the same brush. Brown may have spoken the words, but who calls the shots in NZ First?

    http://keepingstock.blogspot.com/2008/04/time-for-clark-to-sack-peters.html

  5. Historian 5

    It’s good to see Peter Brown’s openly racist comments being treated with the contempt they deserve.

    Sadly, raising false fears about immigration is an old, predictable ploy that too many politicians have indulged in. And not just Peters.

    Here’s Don Brash, then leader of the National Party, September 2006:

    http://www.listener.co.nz/issue/3460/features/6926/so_who_do_we_keep_out.html

    Same message, smarter package.

  6. BeShakey 6

    So Inventory, you think that all coalition agreements, that include making a member of the minor party a government minister, include (implicitly) the requirement that the major party sign off on the minor partys election platform, and kick them out of their ministerial role/s (which would in effect probably mean an end to the coalition)?

    It seems a bit odd that Helen Clark is now responsible for not only Labour’s election platform, but NZF’s and UF’s (and the Greens?).

  7. Matthew Pilott 7

    Inventory2, disingenuous argument – you say (your blog) that Peters has said this type of stuff before, yet only call for him to be sacked now (also on this blog). This was raised when Peters got the job originally, and we haven’t suffered because of it.

    Note, I’m not condoning Borwn’s message in the slightest!

    I also recall that as part of Labour’s agreement with NZF, they were their own party on all matters apart from Winston’s portfolio – this is immigration and not foreign affairs, so it is entirely outside of Labour’s sphere. unless it affects Foreign Affairs…

  8. big bruv 8

    Great interview by Comrade Campbell, for once I applaud he man.

    I also agree with Tane in as much as I would love to see Campbell out a few other pollies under the blowtorch, he could start with Cullen and Clark.

    However we all know he would never do such a thing so all we really have is another sycophantic kiwi jounro picking on (quite rightly as it happens)a minor party instead of being brave enough to take on dear leader.

  9. Steve Pierson 9

    BB. I’m not sure Campbell should really be called a Labour lackey. remember the corngate interview? No love after that.

  10. big bruv 10

    No comment from Clark about this disgusting racist attack, the only inference one can draw from that is that she fully supports Winston firsts policy on Asian immigration.

    I wonder if Comrade Campbell will mention that?

  11. Steve Pierson 11

    Yeah BB, given that Clark is in Europe on official business and was attending Sir Ed’s memorial last night, yours is the only logical inference.

    Kind of reminds me of that 1950s legal logic: if a woman doesn’t say no it must mean she wants to have sex.

  12. Historian 12

    Bruv, you are of course trolling, but perhaps you could tell us which of the major party leaders have bothered with Brown’s blather? Why cross the motorway to tread on an ant?

    The responses have come from the party spokespeople (Carter, Wong, Locke etc), and have been clear and unequivocal, as they should be.

    Less clear are the views of various right-wingers when *other* minorities are targeted, such as Muslims. Peter Brown’s a bigoted buffoon, easy to oppose. But there’s also been a fair amount of Crosby/Textor dog-whistles (“I’m not racist but …”) which have not been so readily condemned.

    Same message, smarter package.

    PS Peter Brown, Bob Clarkson – what’s the difference?

  13. higherstandard 13

    I think it’s a first ! Agreement on all the most common left and right blogs that Peter Brown and his comments are outrageous and unacceptable.

    Perhaps Winston would like to comment – no he’ll wait to see public reaction …. test the polls the decide whether play to the lowest sector of our population come election time – very cynical Winston but hardly surprising.

  14. big bruv 14

    Historian

    It does not matter what the other party leaders think as they are not in coalition with Labour.
    Labour need Winston, without him they are finished.

    Clark should sack Winston immediately if she is at all concerned about this racist attack, she has not done so so she obviously agrees with him.

  15. Historian 15

    Bruv

    The answer is in the question you ignored.

    Peter Brown, Bob Clarkson – what’s the difference?

    And unlike Brown, Clarkson is in Key’s own party. Why was he not sacked? And do you give a toss about racism really, except for trolling?

  16. Steve Pierson 16

    Should Key have resigned when Clarkson said that people who wear headscarves should “go back to Iraq or Islam”?

  17. monty 17

    An this man helps prop up the corrupt and desperate Labour Party. You leftards should immediatley demand Winston declare that this policy is not part of NZ First policy.

    It was wonderful to see Campbell rip this prick to shreds and I cannot believe that he is even in Parliament let alone party of the Labour Government! But the reality is that he is one of yours. Do you mind being propped up by a racist such as Brown?

    [we do oppose Brown’s racist comments. hence the post. SP]

  18. Historian 18

    Monty

    Peter Brown, Bob Clarkson – what’s the difference?

  19. big bruv 19

    Monty I agree with you, it is disgusting that the leader of the Labour party and PM of NZ agrees with the policy of NZ first.

    Her failure to sack Winston is a national embarrassment, it is clear that she is in full “whatever it takes” mode given that it is election year.

  20. Historian 20

    Are you going to keep running away, Bruv?

    Peter Brown, Bob Clarkson – what’s the difference?

  21. Matthew Pilott 21

    Is…is this why you’re so angry big bruv? Given Winston has used this same campaign issue since he were knee ‘igh to grass’oppers & all?

    I mean his coalition with National must have really stung, and then for him to get back in, this time with Labour – you must feel positively disenfranchised, is there nowhere you can turn? Oh wait – what’s that? It’s..it’s The KIWI PARTY ! 😀

    Cap: ‘fringe of’ – big bruv’s relationship with reality?

  22. AncientGeek 22

    BB: And exactly where did you see Helen agreeing with Brown?
    Provide us a link…

    OR would you like to admit that you just made that up with your usual conspiracy paranoid logic?

    captcha: 1909 model
    sound like BB

  23. big bruv 23

    The issue is Helen Clark’s agreement with the racist policy of Winston first.

    If she was not a racist she would have demanded the resignation of the foreign affairs minister, she has not done so.

    “Whatever it takes”

  24. Matthew Pilott 24

    Did you demand Clarkson’s resignation for his comments, Bruv?

    whatever it takes” – to be a troll. Turns out it doesn’t take much by way of intelligence.

  25. Historian 25

    Bruv

    Peter Brown is not a Labour MP. Bob Clarkson is a National MP.

    Peter Brown is not a member of the government. Bob Clarkson is a National Party spokesman, with portfolios.

    According to your brilliant logic, John Key must therefore be a bigger racist than Helen Clark. (I don’t think Key is racist myself, but if you insist …)

  26. big bruv 26

    I am not PM Matthew however if I were then I can guarantee you that I would be sacking Peters immediately.

    The difference is that I do not have a stated policy of “whatever it takes”

  27. Matthew Pilott 27

    So John Key should have sacked Clarkson months ago by your ‘logic’. You agree with this right, Clarkson should be a gonner? How is your heartfelt letter writing campaign to that effect going?

    Oh, a stated policy? Which portfolio is it in? I wouldn’t mind the link to the policy, cheers champ.

  28. havent had a good look through kiwiblog yet, but im sure looking forward to redbaiter trying to defend him. (though redbaiter could still be running around with his tail between his legs since his embarasment over the BSA/californication post)

  29. monty 29

    Bob Clarkson is rough around the edges. I cannot remember his commnets but also understand he is the type of person who would say such a thing – but a couple of pints

    1. Bob is not espousing National Party Policy – That racist Brown is. Brown was making factually incorrect statement and gross generalisations about a major part of out population who normally are good hard-working and industrious citizens.
    2. Two worngs do not make it right.
    3. Given the Labour party have in the past vilified other minority groups (Chinless scarf wearers, extreme christians, lawyers and accountants who play golf) and Labour have failed to come out and demand a retraction I think we can assume that Labour actually support Winston’s policy (afterall Asians tend to vote National)

    I think the facts speak for themselves. Labour are happy for NZF poodle to do their dirty work for them.

  30. Tane 30

    Bob is not espousing National Party Policy – That racist Brown is.

    Brown’s promoting National Party policy? That’s news to me, I thought he was promoting NZ First’s.

    Labour have failed to come out and demand a retraction I think we can assume that Labour actually support Winston’s policy

    You assume too much. It’s not Labour’s business to demand NZ First retract its policy, but it is their business to state a view. And they have – their relevant spokesmen have condemned it.

  31. Historian 31

    Monty

    That is a really desperate attempt to smear the Labour Party. Get back to me when you can back up your lies with a shred of evidence (which you can’t, because there is none).

    Here is clear evidence you obviously didn’t bother to read, earlier in the thread. The views of the previous National party leader:

    http://www.listener.co.nz/issue/3460/features/6926/so_who_do_we_keep_out.html

    Note his comments on New Zealanders feeling “threatened” by Asian immigration.

    Remember the line about immigrants who “spit in the street”? That was Don Brash in 2005 (written by one of his Hollow Men, no doubt).

  32. Ari 32

    Thanks for the video. It’s very revealing that he has nothing to say to Asian-New Zealanders on his comments, and hadn’t even read the report well enough to see that most of the population of Asian-New Zealanders predicted will be born in New Zealand.

    I’m also highly worried that he can’t justify why he thinks Asian-New Zealanders won’t speak English despite the fact that we now require their proficiency with English language to be tested, and has not expressed any lack of confidence in that process.

  33. Tane 33

    No worries Ari. By the way, just added you to our blogroll. Apologies for the delay in doing so.

  34. Historian 34

    Monty: “Asians tend to vote National”

    Again, where’s your evidence? The irony will go way over your head, but for somebody who claims to be concerned about racism, you sure love the empty generalisations.

    The survey below reported 47% Labour, 40% National. However, it is several years old now, so perhaps you have more recent data? Or do you just pick lazy prejudices out of your arse, and pretend they are facts?

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/ED0409/S00081.htm

  35. AncientGeek 35

    BB:

    I am not PM

    Yes and it is easy to see why. Looking at your comments, they lack a certain clarity about lines of control in and between party organizations.

  36. Mike Collins 36

    Great video.

    I think it is an important point that has been made that as Winston is part of the Government, the views of his party are relevant. Particularly as minister of Foreign Affairs. Can he now adequately discharge his obligations given his party’s stated policies?

    Others have made the point and have been denigrated for doing so. However I think as Prime Minister, Helen Clark needs to think long and hard about the effect of having as Foreign Minister a man who leads a party with disgustingly racist views. Some may feel that it is sufficient for party spokespeople to condemn Peter Browns statement on behalf of NZ First. However Helen Clark needs to worry about the reputation NZ has internationally. She should give strong consideration to a Prime Ministerial statement of condemnation if not an outright sacking. It is simply unacceptable for her to be putting Labour’s fortunes ahead of NZ’s reputation.

  37. AncientGeek 37

    MC: I think you’re a bit confused as well. It wasn’t Winston who made the comments. I haven’t seen it in any party policy from NZF.

    As far as I can tell (by analogy, and stretching it a bit) you’re saying that Key should stand down as leader of the opposition because Burka Bob makes rascist comments. Or he shouldn’t get the security briefings as leader of the opposition…..

    Is that what you are saying?

  38. BeShakey said “So Inventory, you think that all coalition agreements, that include making a member of the minor party a government minister, include (implicitly) the requirement that the major party sign off on the minor partys election platform, and kick them out of their ministerial role/s (which would in effect probably mean an end to the coalition)?”

    Not at all BeShakey. The point I am making is that Clark appointing Peters, well known as a loose cannon, as Foreign Minister was the price of NZ First enabling her to form a government. However, with that came risk. The role of Foreign Minister is a crucial one – Peters is effectively the “shop window” for the New Zealand government on the international diplomatic circuit. To have as Foreign Minister the leader of a xenophobic party is not a good look, and unless Clark distances herself from Peters in strong terms, she runs the risk of being seen as endorsing the NZ First anti-Asian rhetoric.

    Anyone who believes that Brown’s outburst was not sanctioned by Peters is naive in the extreme. Peters has a well-documented track record in Asian-bashing, and whether by accident or design, his rhetoric is normally delivered in the run-up to an election. Labour markets itself as a party which is “ethnic-friendly”; being associated with Winston Peters and his party can only be bad news for Labour.

  39. AncientGeek said “MC: I think you’re a bit confused as well. It wasn’t Winston who made the comments. I haven’t seen it in any party policy from NZF.”

    Get real AG! You know that Winston rules NZ First with an iron hand, and that comments like this would never be made without him giving the ok. I have no doubt that these are Winston’s words, just like the “rows of ostentatious houses” comments from 1996.

  40. Mike Collins 40

    AG – This has come from the spokesperson for immigration for NZ First and Winston has not distanced himself from the statement. I believe it is fair to infer that this is policy unless otherwise stated. This is also historically accurate with NZF policy.

    Bob Clarkson although an idiot for making the stupid comments he made is not responsible for New Zealand’s image overseas – he is not minister of Foreign Affairs. John Key can discipline him however he feels is right – his decision does not affect New Zealand’s international reputation so much as a Foreign Minister leading a party with racist policies.

    You say I’m confused. Next time bring the crayons and I’ll think you’ll understand a little better eh mate.

  41. AncientGeek 41

    So you have some kite-flying. Peter Brown from the clip I saw, was quite clear that it is his opinion.

    Personally I think the statement was ridiculous as well as being stupidly racist. Peter Brown deserves condemnation and he has observably gotten it. Hopefully he will get dropped as NZF’s immigration spokesperson.

    But to jump from that to dismissing Winston requires so many steps between that you’d have to be a conspiracy nutter to make them. It jumps across so many lines of responsibility that you could make equivalent examples from any party from some of their resident idiots saying things to the media.

    Face it – it is a hell of stretch from Peter Brown expressing his opinion, to dismissing Winston (not that I favour him either).

  42. AncientGeek 42

    I2:

    You know that Winston rules NZ First with an iron hand, and that comments like this would never be made without him giving the ok.

    Crap. Think back 10 years to the Nat/NZF coalition. Think back four (?) years to Woolerston. If I could be bothered, I could probably pick a dozen examples including Ron Mark.

    Internal discipline inside NZF is just marginally better than the Greens.

  43. Mike Collins 43

    AG – Has Winston said he doesn’t support the statement? No. Did Peter Brown say he has the support of Winston Peters in the video? Yes. Has Winston Peters said similar things himself in election years? Yes. Did Peter Brown say he was acting in accordance with NZF policy? Yes.

    To say Winston Peters is not responsible here is to hide your head in the sand. However things change considerably if he comes out and condemns the statement. Anything less is an endorsement worthy of his sacking.

  44. Historian 44

    I don’t doubt that Winston endorses Brown’s comments. NZ First are doing what they’ve always done – appeal to rednecks. The only difference is that this time it was done without Peters’ demagogue skills, a bumbling amateur instead of the old pro.

    It is no different from the message that got Peters up to 30% in the polls in the 1990’s, no different from when his star was rising, no different from when he entered a coalition with National, no different from when Brash courted him in 2005, no different from when John Key said last year that Peters could be Foreign Minister in his government, and for exactly the same reason as Labour – because they needed the seats.

    New Zealand First’s poison has been there for 15 years now. It’s a bit late to start claiming moral high ground and demanding resignations. Some of us got off our arses and marched and campaigned and protested against Peters and his bigotry years ago. If you joined in then, credit to you. If you didn’t, spare me the lecture now.

    I hate racism. But I hate posturing, pretend anti-racism almost as much. And given the silence – or even approval – on the Right when OTHER minority groups are targeted, I suspect that a lot of the “outrage” is pretty damn artificial.

    If anyone doubts this, spend five minutes checking out the blogs (usual suspects) from when the Somalian hi-jacker hit the news. Not much anti-racism then.

  45. AncientGeek 45

    Historian: That was almost a perfect description of how I feel about it as well. Especially the last three paragraphs.

    NZF caters to a particular subset of the population that I don’t care for much. It is a set of attitudes about superficial differences that I detest. However the only way to clear it out of society is to do it slowly. The common racism of 30 years ago is not tolerated as easily by the current generations. It will be less tolerated in the future.

    Like it or not, Peter Brown probably has support for his attitudes. He is in the right generation to have caught a high level of asian phobia from the war and post-war propaganda, plus the end of empire (he was born in 1939). The attitudes he espoused are common in that generation. However there is often a disjunction between what is said and what is done. You hear a lot of rhetoric about generalizations, and quite different actions.

    But it isn’t idle rhetoric and empty gestures that will change it. It is pushing the message over and over across time and across generations. You sure as hell don’t try to suppress people talking about it, because it just goes underground, and resurrects in a more virulent form later. You do suppress the idiots who act on it.

    I’ve been fighting racism for my adult life, because I could never understand how anyone could be ignorant enough to believe its underlying premises. I get a bit pissed seeing dick heads trivializing it for trivial political opportunities.

  46. AG – they say that confession is good for the soul, so here goes. For much of my adult life, I would have been one of those that you were fighting. But things change, and a “mid-life crisis” (amazing how two failed marriages can affect you!) led to a paradigm shift in my attitude towards other cultures. That’s probably why I am so offended by Peter Brown’s tirade the other day. His venom was especially offensive when it is considered that he himself is a first-generation immigrant who has enjoyedf the largesse of New Zealand.

    But make no mistake. These were not Peter Brown’s words. New Zealand First made immigration a key policy right from its genesis at the 1993 election, and the xenophobia has been present in the party throughout its life. New Zealand First has only ever had one leader – Winston Peters. If you do not agree that Brown was articulating Peters’s views, I would suggest that you are being very charitable to Peters. I am not so charitable, and believe that New Zealand’s international reputation will be harmed by Peters’s continued presence as Foreign Minister. And I stand by my claim that Helen Clark runs the risk of “guilt by association” if she does not sanction Peters. Then again, she knew she was taking a risk when she appointed him………

  47. big bruv 47

    Another day passes and Clark has still refuses to do anything about this disgusting racist attack.

    “Whatever it takes”

  48. deemac 48

    Another day passes and the right wing trolls still waste acres of space on this blog repeating points that have already been answered ad nauseam.
    They never actually enter into a discussion (the whole point of blogs), just make the same mad statements over and over again.
    The phrase “get a life” springs to mind

  49. deemac – check out my last post on this thread, and you will find that I am indeed entering into a discussion with AncientGeek, albeit some time after he had “discussed” my comments in an earlier post.

  50. Matthew Pilott 50

    Bruv – unless you can show me where you have called for Clarkson to be fired for his comments too, I’ll assume that you’re just saying this for show, and that you support Brown’s comments.

  51. big bruv 51

    Another day passes and the left keep making excuses.

    I know Clark is right into gutter politics yet even I did not think that she would go as low as this.

  52. big bruv 52

    Matthew

    Unless you can show me where you called for Roger Douglas to halt the sale of state assets back in the 80’s I will assume that you remain a fan of free market policies.

  53. Matthew Pilott 53

    Two years vs two decades? Tell you what bruv – show me an online blog from the 80’s and I’ll happily do so.

    Now, are you being selecitve in your causes, or did you equally call for Peters and Clarkson to be sacked?

    I’ll make it easier for you: in your next trol…I mean post, here, call for Clarkson to be fired, as well as Peters. Show some mettle, man, and stand by your convictions.

  54. Sam Dixon 54

    In Big Bruv’s world, anything that you don’t explicitly condemn you love boundlessly.

  55. big bruv 55

    Matthew

    Your diversion tactic will not work, Clarkson is not a member of the govt and nor is he in coalition with the Labour party.

    Winston is a member of the Labour led govt and as such he is under the control of dear leader, unless she sacks him immediately then she approves of the racist policy of NZ first.

  56. Steve Pierson 56

    “[Clarkson] is a member of the [National Party] and as such he is under the control of [John Key], unless [he] sacks him immediately then [he] approves of the racist policy of [Clarkson]”

    so, Key should have sacked Clarkson or resigned himself. Eh, BigB?

  57. big bruv 57

    I am staggered that you guys are happy to defend the racist policy of NZ first and to defend the inaction of dear leader.

    At what point would you say enough?, does Clark have to shoot somebody first or would that be OK as long as it was an Asian person.

    IrishBill says: One more attempt to misrepresent our arguments like this and you will be banned.

  58. Historian 58

    Big Bruv

    I have read attacks on refugees and multi-cultural society by “Big Bruv” over on Kiwiblog. If you are the same “Big Bruv”, then you are a racist.

    Therefore you must now sack yourself. Goodbye.

  59. Mike Collins 59

    Steve, The point I made still holds that Clarkson is not a minister of the crown and does not represent NZ overseas. I would have preferred he was sacked but it is different when a minister of Foreign Affairs is the leader of a party with racist policies. That is something the PM needs to act on. She is responsible for NZs reputation. No-one has discussed this point as yet so I find it offensive when people start saying I have brought no new debating points to the thread.

  60. big bruv 60

    Irish

    That would be right, you chaps are always keen to ban anybody who does not agree with your policy.

    So it is OK for you guys to misrepresent National party policy yet you are not going to let anybody question the policy of the Labour party.

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