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Censoring criticism of Key

Written By: - Date published: 10:01 am, October 10th, 2011 - 145 comments
Categories: john key, radio - Tags: , ,

Martyn “Bomber” Bradbury has been banned from appearing on RNZ after strongly criticising Key’s behaviour in the throat slitting incident (video).  Bradbury confirms the ban in this post:

Banned from Radio NZ for criticizing the Government

Folks, the rumors are true, I’ve been banned from Radio NZ for criticizing John Key. I was phoned last Friday morning and told that my criticism of John Key was over the top and as such I had broken RNZ editorial policies. I thought they were joking.

I was first on RNZ over a decade ago with Kim Hill and have since then been a regular on the Panel, a show I very much enjoyed participating in. I have given dozens of opinions with the same bite in the past and thought the entire situation was a wind up.

I was wrong, this was no joke. I was told I would be banned, I asked if that was for life and was left with the impression that a Labour-Green Government would be in power before i was ever let back on the station. …

Not only has Bradbury been banned, RNZ has removed links to the audio of his criticism from its web site. Here’s the page for Afternoons last Thursday, note that The Panel (usually linked as Part 1 and Part 2) has only Part 1.  Bradbury’s remarks in Part 2 have disappeared down the memory hole.

The audio is still available if you know (ht hutch) where to look: (audio link)The relevant section starts at 07:30, or we’ve extracted just that section here: (audio link)If you’re not up for audio, the text of what Bradbury said is in his post linked above.  Have a listen and judge for yourselves.  This is all it takes to get you banned from RNZ.  I look forward to all the proud advocates of free speech, and all the journalists who opposed the Herald’s ban from Parliament, kicking up the same kind of fuss over this outrageous act of censorship.

Update: This just in from Bring back Bomber in comments:

I just spoke to RNZ CEO’s PA who put me through to John Houson (she said he was responsible for the banning) who told me Bomber was actually banned for making defamatory statements about the prime minister, and that Key might sue Bomber for defamation. He couldn’t tell me what statements were defamatory, told me to look at the script.

Update 2: From Carol:  Bomber just tweeted his response to the defamation claim:

http://twitter.com/#!/CitizenBomber/status/123147000555380736

RNZ now claim they banned me because I defamed the PM that wasn’t mentioned in their call to me, they r making this up as they go along now

Update 3: Good to see that 3News is now on the case: Blogger Bomber banned from RNZ for criticism of Key.

145 comments on “Censoring criticism of Key”

  1. Chris 1

    Might sue…and then again might not. Sounds like rationalisation.

  2. reporter 2

    I think the defamatory part of it might have been in the first paragraph of the transcript of BB’s rant. He’s effectivly accusing the PM of corruption.
    Putting aside the argument of whether BB’s correct or not, I guess the lawyers at national radio saw the statement as in that legal grey area, as radioNZ would then have to prove to that the loan to radio live was indeed a bribe! Or they would have to prove it was honest opinion. With the budget cuts they have, the last thing they need is a lawsuit.

    That’s my take on it anyway

    • I agree that an overly timid approach may raise issues but Bomber is commenting on a matter of public importance and the law says that MPs are pretty well fair game unless malice can be shown. 
       
      It is not as if he is the only one that has said this.  Mediaworks were given a sweetheart deal not recommended by Treasury.  And then Key gets essentially a free hour to say what he wants as long as it is not political.
       
      I have seen many comments on this on a number of sites and discussion on the possibility there is a link.  When you shut down this sort of debate then our elected representatives can get away with hell.
       
      Bomber also says that he read the first paragraph to Mora and they had a laugh about it.
       
      This really smells.

  3. Blue 3

    Defamation? Really?

    That’s another Tui billboard, right up beside ‘I was talking about Parliamentary security, honest’.

    Has Key ever denied making the throat-slitting gesture? Because I haven’t seen him do so.

    We know he yelled the comments that it was Labour’s fault because his office admitted it when they tried to spin it away.

    There is nothing else in what Bomber said that could be considered defamatory. The part about John Key’s behaviour being similar to that of a meth addict on a bender was clearly his own opinion 😀

    • Tigger 3.1

      Exactly – this is all clearly true or fair opinion. Defamation is a tool used by rich people to shut down opinions they don’t like. It’s expensive and the outcome not always favourable but it is immensely successful at tying up those trying to speak out.

      Let him sue. There will be freedom of speech lawyers lining up to work on Bomber’s case for free.

      • Zaphod Beeblebrox 3.1.1

        Interesting to see Key standing up in court explaining the throat slitting too.

      • lprent 3.1.2

        It hardly applies here, even if there was something defamatory (which IMHO there was not).

        Lange vs Atkinson in both the original 1998 judgement and 2000 court of appeal decision provide quite a wide latitude (read Margret Pope’s article about it after Michael Basset produced “..a vendetta masquerading as a scholarly work” – which perfectly describes the evil little creep’s intent IMHO).

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1

          So Bomber’s right. RNZ are making this up as they go along. Let’s ask the PM’s Office to confirm whether or not they threatened RNZ with a defamation case.

          RNZ = Banana Republic news media

  4. Anne 4

    actually banned for making defamatory statements about the prime minister, and that Key might sue Bomber for defamation.

    Wow! That’s interesting. For the CEO’s PA, John Houson to say that then someone – probably from the PM’s office – has been in touch with RNZ and alluded to a possible defamation case by Key. That is bully boy stuff of the worst kind.

  5. Kerry 5

    The tories are always corrupt!

  6. Carol 6

    Bomber just tweeted his response to the defamation claim:

    http://twitter.com/#!/CitizenBomber/status/123147000555380736

    RNZ now claim they banned me because I defamed the PM that wasn’t mentioned in their call to me, they r making this up as they go along now

  7. Blighty 7

    Just listened to it now. There’s nothing defamatory there. Bomber is simply repeating the descriptions of Key’s actions that have been widely stated in the media and giving his opinion of Key’s actions.

    Defamation is when you make up a fact about someone to hurt their reputation, not when you repeat a fact and say how it makes you feel.

    Amazing how Mora actually tries to get them talking about the PM’s views on cats, rather than the issues raised by Bomber. Love how Bomber just refuses.

  8. Nick K 8

    No Blighty. You can republish a false statement and still be liable in defamation.

  9. Sounds like some minders are trying the Chilling Effect:

    A chilling effect is a term in law and communication which describes a situation where speech or conduct is suppressed by fear of penalization at the interests of an individual or group.It may prompt self-censorship and therefore hamper free speech. Since many attacks rely on libel law, the term libel chill is also often used. This is the same concept as a Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation, or “SLAPP” suit. – Wikipedia
     

    It amounts to censorship and shows that with his Medaiworks loan, RadioLive hour and the Bradbury incident that Key and National have undue influence with the media.

    • seeker 9.1

      “It amounts to censorship and shows that with his Medaiworks loan, RadioLive hour and the Bradbury incident that Key and National have undue influence with the media.”

      Absolutely. Key and co have totally outed themselves as Murdochlites. Rupert wannabees- and all from Nutwood.(with apologies to a rather favourite bear.)

  10. Roxanne 10

    Just to be clear:
    We are not allowed to give opinions about our prime minister, the definition of a public figure when discussing politics on radio now?

    Being genuinely outraged or questioning Keys leadership OR the people who represent us in an open forum can get you sued by the man himself?

    We are only allowed to speak out against the government as long as we use particular wording and our manners? Do people know how political frustration works, scripts are for actors.

    I remember other leaders getting flamed and accused from every corner of their lives and they didn’t scare that easy or resort to legal bullying. COS THEY WERE WORKING.

    Banning LEGAL criticism, bungling speeches, drunk on magazine covers and bringing back Coronation Street? Wait for him to pass his 18th ’emergency’ bill to stitch this shit up, National abuses legislative reach and John Key is a humiliating Jabroni.

  11. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 11

    This is ridiculous. RNZ is full of people criticising Key. Happens all the time. Bomber is just a talentless waste of skin. That’s the real reason they are not inviting him back.

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 11.1

      “Bomber is just a talentless waste of skin. That’s the real reason they are not inviting him back.”

      Is that the criteria for excluding RNZ guests? Never noticed that.

    • Lanthanide 11.2

      The funny thing is, RNZ didn’t even have to tell him he was banned. They could have just chosen never to invite him back on and never made their reasons for the decision clear.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 11.2.1

        Absolutely, Lanthanide.

        • Pascal's bookie 11.2.1.1

          Which is what they would have done if it was just about his general performance. But they didn’t do that.

          I can’t see any reason not to take them attheir word about why they told him he wouldn’t be coming back. Why would they make that up?

          • freedom 11.2.1.1.1

            why would they change their story then Pascal? One day it about balance, one day about lack of notice, today it’s what, his choice of socks?

            bs is bs, no matter what ecofriendly paper bag you put it in

            • Pascal's bookie 11.2.1.1.1.1

              So you think the reason they’ve changed their story is that they really banned him because they just don’t want him on anymore?

              Doesn’t make much sense seeing they could just not invite him on again.

              Nope, I think you can take them at their word that they had specific problems with what he said that day, and they have banned him because of what he said.

    • Kate 11.3

      “Bomber is just a talentless waste of skin.”

      Sounds like defamation…

  12. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 12

    The Mediawatch report cites several issues with Bradbury’s “contribution”:

    1. Bradbury spoke over the host and wouldn’t let him talk
    2. His rant against the Prime Minister was word for word taken from his blog post
    3. Previous contributions to the show were recitals from his blog posts
    4. His rant was against RNZ’s broadcasting standards

    So it is hardly banned for criticising the PM. Banned for being a bore, more like it.

    Democracy under threat? Self important childish bores who think it is funny to have names glorifying violence under threat, more like it.

    • IrishBill 12.1

      Using that rationale the only political commentator left unbanned would be Gordon Campbell.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 12.1.1

        But it is more than a little tiresome when Bomber begins reading shit (and I mean shit) out. Everyone else seems to manage to speak off the cuff.

      • lprent 12.1.2

        Yep. I can’t think of anyone else who isn’t guilty of most of those in any single session. Hooten in particular routinely does them as a matter of course.

        But that also misses the point. Bomber has been doing all of those things for as long as I have heard him on RNZ. The only real thing that is different is that he is doing them close to an election, and John Key is getting more sensitive about his image after consistently screwing up recently.

        • Gosman 12.1.2.1

          Do you happen to have an example of this? Since you feel he routinely does them as a matter of course it should be pretty easy for you to link to an audio clip where Matthew Hooten has done something similar.

        • Anne 12.1.2.2

          Hooten in particular routinely does them as a matter of course.

          Hooton (he gets very upset when is surname is spelt wrong 😉 ) was a model of good behaviour today. I wonder whyyee?

          • Gosman 12.1.2.2.1

            So do you have an example of Hooten making similar potentially defamatorents about someone?

            • lprent 12.1.2.2.1.1

              There were no defamatory comments that I could see within the current law.

              Perhaps you should enlighten us about the one(s) that you see, and also state why you think that they go past the bounds established for Lange vs Atkinson.

              In the meantime (and in the expectation that you won’t front with anything sensible), I’m putting a mental note on you of “bullshitting fool”…

              • Gosman

                Do you happen to have examples of Matthew Hooten’s comments you feel are equivalent to Martyn Bradbury that he routinely does as a matter of course ?

                • Hooten gave this lovely performance Monday last week on Nine to Noon. Knowing that the Double Downgrade was undoubtedly going to be the big political issue of the last week that will be discussed, he came out fighting and making every effort to dominate the show.
                  Talk about “strident and partisan”! Bomber was nothing compared with Hooten.
                  Stream Link :
                  http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/2499353/politics-with-matthew-hooton-and-mike-williams.asx
                   

                • lprent

                  You made the claim that Bomber made defamatory comments. You have yet to back that up or retract.

                  If you don’t them I will be forced to ban you for making a defamatory comment (in accordance with your overall thesis). Unlike bomber talking about John Key, you talking about Bomber isn’t covered by Lange vs Atkinson.

                  • Gosman

                    I stated they were POTENTIALLY defamatory and I back that up by quoting back to you –

                    “I just spoke to RNZ CEO’s PA who put me through to John Houson (she said he was responsible for the banning) who told me Bomber was actually banned for making defamatory statements about the prime minister, and that Key might sue Bomber for defamation. He couldn’t tell me what statements were defamatory, told me to look at the script.”

                    Now you stated they were definately not defamatory (based on your obvious extensive knowledge of NZ laws on defamation). This is obviously at odds with the guy who thinks they are POTENTIALLY defamatory. You may well be right or he may well be right.

                    I will ask you again do you have examples of Matthew Hooten doing something similar (i.e. basically accusing the PM of being a nasty piece of work)?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You seem to believe that RNZ is so chickenshit at their job that some unqualified bandying around of the words “potentially defamatory” scared them so much it caused them to hand out a life time ban to Bomber.

                      More likely reason: a call from the PM’s office.

                    • Gosman

                      Then the Labour Party should be all over this like a rash.

                      What is the Labour Party’s position by the way?

                    • lprent

                      Like you, the RNZ guy was talking out of his arse and clearly does not understand the limits of defamation with respect to politicians.

                      Defamation law is something that was force fed to me through several law courses, partners and families law degrees, and of course I took advice when this site was set up. There is NO statement that Bomber made about John Key that was potentially defamatory. For you to state there was (and Houson) however may be….

                      But I suspect they you are simply too ignorant on the subject to understand the difference between the two instances.

                      Just like your last para is equally ignorant and somewhat lazy. I never said anything about Hooten being defamatory. Stop being such an idiot and read back in the comments to what I was responding to and what I actually said. Why do you think I should participate in your ignorant fantasies about defamation?

                • Anne

                  Do you happen to have examples of Matthew Hooten’s comments you feel are equivalent to Martyn Bradbury…?

                  Listen to William Joyce’s stream link from about 11.49mins…

                  • Gosman

                    Yeah and what about it? Sounds like a perfectly reasoned position to take if you are meaning his comments about Phil Goff.

                    What did he state there that was in any way similar to what Martyn Bradbury has stated?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hooten’s completely beside the point. RNZ buckled to pressure from the top and subsequently banned Bomber.

                    • Gosman

                      So all I have seen on this from Labour is Clare Curran stating on Red Alert that she wants to be “… reassured that there was no external influence brought to bear on Radio NZ management and editorial staff to make that decision.”.

                      Apparently for an open and shut case of political interference in the editorial policy of Public Broadcasting all the Labour Party wants is to be reassured. You must be embarrassed with such an insipid and ineffective opposition to the National led government.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Both Hooten and Curran are beside the point.

                      Man you are desperate. Whose irrelevant name are you going to invoke next?

                  • Gosman

                    So the best example you have as a comparison is Matthew Hooten calling Phil Goff a relic who has flip floppedon major issues, (a charge I have seen made from people on the left as well), and that Mike Williams belief that polls show people shy away from supporting a Government at above 50% is a lie or factually inaccurate.

                    You seriously think this equates to calling into question the character of the Prime Minister by implying that he is a very nasty man indeed because of his supposed actions when a man attempted to jump into the debating chamber?

                    • Tiger Mountain

                      Heh, Gossie, I am tempted to say “Ve ask ze qvestions…” but I will not. Your attempted corralling style of commenting will not relieve ShonKey from his most recent deception over Standard and Poor’s. Gestures, body language and speech all gave him away.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      calling into question the character of the Prime Minister by implying that he is a very nasty man indeed because of the cut throat gesture he made at Goff when a man attempted to jump into the debating chamber?

                      Let’s call a spade a spade shall we mate.

                    • Gosman

                      What???

                      Care to explain how that comment of yours Tiger Mountain is related to what is being discussed?

                    • McFlock

                      oh look everybody – Gos is preparing to take offence at something on the interwebs so he can then pretend that he stomped off as a result of a grievous insult! Yep, an ‘allo ‘allo accent on the ‘net is so much worse than a throat-slashing gesture on the floor of the House.

                      [edit]”everybody” makes so much more sense than “everyboy”, doesn’t it?

                    • mik e

                      Gooseman key is suffering from OCD, OLD obsessive lying disorder ,OPOD obsessive photo op disorder, ODD obsessive denial disorder.OBD obsessive borrowing disorder.The day that Helen Clarke’s was threatened by a gun wielding ex under cover policeman . She didn’t use that as an excuse for the DPS to speed gooseman .Keys body language gave it away he fucked up and doesn’t want to take responsibility[the party of personal responsibility yeah right wing nut job]although initially he did apologize but then after crosby textor new story main stream media sucked in again.

    • McFlock 12.2

      ROFL! We are talking about the the same station that regularly airs Screechy McHooten, aren’t we?

    • r0b 12.3

      1. Bradbury spoke over the host and wouldn’t let him talk

      Have you actually listened to the audio?

  13. freedom 13

    RNZ today:
    the PM’s throat slitting gesture reported as ‘odd’ behaviour due to the intense fear of the threat

    WTF!

    they are making more out of Labour’s calling him a scumbag than the physical action itself!
    (They spent more time discussing the Greens hypothetical future relationship with National than commenting on the PM physically threatening another member in the House)

    Ryan is just yapping away nonsensical mantras
    prostrate at the altar of minor celebrity ? or just a populist protecting the pay packet?

    “i don’t think anyone is calling this an act of social-activism”
    Ryan forgets that we do not know what motivated the incident, perhaps if there was one single comment from the person who tried to launch themselves we could decide one way or another. The label of mental instability was branded on this person immediately, without proof or reason apart from one extreme action that had risk of self harm. This is something many of us engage in many times a day, from taking a drive, jumping out of an aeroplane, to eating a fast food cheeseburger, there are many acts more hazardous than what this individual attempted. He did not fall, injure himself or cause anyone to be harmed who is not prone to that risk as part of their job description.

    If social-activism is to promote a circumstance or bring light to a situation of social relevance then this most definitely was a social-activist action. It has highlighted the illusion of our PM’s character.

    • Lanthanide 13.1

      “The label of mental instability was branded on this person immediately, without proof or reason apart from one extreme action that had risk of self harm. This is something many of us engage in many times a day, from taking a drive, jumping out of an aeroplane, to eating a fast food cheeseburger, there are many acts more hazardous than what this individual attempted. He did not fall, injure himself or cause anyone to be harmed who is not prone to that risk as part of their job description.”

      I’m sorry, but attempting to jump off a balcony and fall at least 4m onto an uneven surface is considerably more dangerous than going driving or eating a cheeseburger, and arguably more dangerous than jumping out of an aeroplane wearing a parachute and properly trained in it’s use or tandem-diving with someone who is. Also no one deliberately goes driving or eats a cheeseburger with the intention of self-harm; and if they did then they would also be labelled mentally unstable.

      Psychologically speaking, an act of attempted self-harm (especially in public like this) is considered abnormal and a sign of mental instability, whether you agree with that determination or not.

      Whether he was truly trying to jump or just pretending to is another issue, but certainly everyone at the scene thought he was trying to jump. From the descriptions I’ve read it even sounds like he had quite a bit of his body over the railing by the time the public/security staff pulled him back.

      • McFlock 13.1.1

        Although self-harm can be a perfectly rational response to completely irrational circumstances – and WINZ are the masters of creating irrational circumstances (depending on the government of the day).

        There was another chap a few years back who broke some windows in a WINZ office and was on the media as being disturbed. The judge threw out the case because he and his kids were in dire straits, he’d gone through all the correct channels, and WINZ had still refused him support he was legally entitled to. Bashing in windows and chaining yourself to a door so you get arrested appeared irrational, but actually worked.

      • freedom 13.1.2

        In activism and other protest activity there is often potential for self-harm. This does not dictate a position of mental instability. Self-immolation, being a very clear and defensible example. A rational person can submit to physical injury when involved in an action they consider to be of importance. Rugby is a pretty good example.

        Instantly labelling this particular individual as a mentally unstable is purely an emotive and politically expedient judgement based on the isolated context and environment of the action. Based on that criteria most behaviour in the house would suggest the average age of a Parliamentarian is about three and a half.

        We have no valid information on what would have eventuated if the individual had completed their action. 4m is a relatively easy drop and if he had been aiming for one of the bench seats the odds of getting to the floor without injury are pretty good. As a mental exercise I have daydreamed the action myself when sitting in the gallery. Calling this a suicide attempt is fanciful and unrealistic and only demeans that very real issue which destroys families in NZ all too often.

        For all we know he may have landed safely, and simply tried to speak to the Members of the House. For all we know he may have had something to say. We will never know.

        • Lanthanide 13.1.2.1

          “For all we know he may have landed safely, and simply tried to speak to the Members of the House. For all we know he may have had something to say. We will never know.”

          If this person thought that jumping off a 4m balcony would leave him unharmed and in a position where he could speak to members of the house, then I would say he was mentally unbalanced.

          I’m sorry, but you’re just trying to twist this into an indictment on the media, when their coverage of the situation is completely justified by what actually took place.

          • freedom 13.1.2.1.1

            damn right it is an idictment of the media but i am not twisting anything. They selected what parts to report and obviously decided the PM physically threatening other members was not news worthy. ( flip it around and have Goff doing that to the PM and just imagine the livecast lynch mob that would be planned)

            The media and everyone who jumped on board have labelled the guy unstable without proof.

            The references to suicide were a completely sensationalist piece of bs fabrication as there is close to zero chance of dying from that fall, injury yes, serious injury, possibly, suicide? not likely.

            Obviously the odds of making it to the floor and getting out a single syllable would be zero,
            but attempting it may have been the purpose, my point was we do not know.

            What we do know are the facts of the PM’s behaviour and the reaction to these actions by other members of the House. We know the facts, we saw the throat slitting action, we saw the eye rolling, we have a clear picture of the charcter of our PM

            It is the media that chooses not to report on it, and no spin can justify that decision
            but with labels and distractions they have buried another chapter from The Life of a Liar

            • Lanthanide 13.1.2.1.1.1

              It’s highly possible you could die from a fall from that height (broken neck). Falling onto an uneven surface such as the edge or corner of a parliamentary desk heightens the risk.

              Lots of people die every year from tripping over in their own home.

              Whether it was a ‘suicide attempt’ per se is somewhat irrelevant – it’s clearly self-harm at the minimum. Self-harm is not carried out by people in sound mental health; that’s part of the definition of sound mental health.

              • freedom

                That is why i used self-immolation as an example. Find me someone with a more stable and sound state of mental health than a traditionally trained tibetan monk deciding to protest injustice with the offering of their own life.

                Certainly it is an extreme example amongst men of prayer but so are the actions of this man when taken in the context of his environment. He is not reported to have been displaying any outwards signs of unstable behaviour prior to the incident. We are not being informed of the situation that led to his action nor is that likely to change. A label was branded on him without justification. and has been memorized and repeated as expected without critique.

                He was more likely just a regular person under unmanageable stress and made an egregious decison which, one way or another, has altered the future of his life. He was 54 years old, most folk i know of that age have a pretty good reason for the things they do, (even though many spouses would question the sanity of many of these decisions i am sure) i openly concede he was desperate, i agree his actions were not immediately helpful to his situation,
                i realise the ‘lone nutter machine’ must be feed on a regular basis.

                I do not accept this as proof he is mentally unstable.

                • Lanthanide

                  “He is not reported to have been displaying any outwards signs of unstable behaviour prior to the incident.”

                  Actually he’s said to have been muttering to himself while sitting in the gallery.

                  Your reference to self-immolation is irrelevant – the man who attempted to jump from the gallery is not a tibetan monk nor did he attempt to self-immolate. We must interpret his actions according to the society in which he is in. Our society says that attempting to jump from a balcony of a height of at least 4m onto an un-even surface is evidence of ill mental health.

                  Just as we would judge someone eating cockroaches or cats and dogs to be evidence of poverty or extreme hunger, in other societies these behaviours are seen as normal.

                  Also, this:
                  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21489697
                  “Self-immolation was more frequently associated with a history of mental illness or substance abuse history in higher-income countries than in lower-income countries.”

                  http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/16/Suppl_1/A7.1.abstract
                  “This study suggests that adjustment disorder is a risk factor for self-immolation, overall. More broadly, psychopathology presents an increased risk of self-immolation. In male patients, drug abuse/dependency, antisocial personality disorder and depressive personality disorder increased the risk of self-immolation. Among females, adjustment disorders and depressive disorders increased the risk. “

                  • mike

                    We can’t rule out the possibility that the guy was doing his best to appear as if he was going to jump, without actually ever intending to. Just to make publicity for his point. I think that’s a less likely scenario, especially given eye witnesses saying they had no doubt he was trying to jump. I’m just saying it’s possible.

                    I don’t think it was nice of Bomber to say it, if somone said he ‘might’ have a mental health problem that’s fine, but I don’t see how saying he has a mental health problem could be grounds for defamation. It’s not malicious, and to show the claim to be false you would have to show that there is no evidence of a mental health problem. And as Lanthanide points out that could be a problem by virtue of his actions in the House.

                    And if it is grounds then someone should sue Paula Bennett who, after the incident was shown on TV saying, “Yes it was scary; obviously the guy has… [nods]… issues.” To say the guy had an issue is redundant, clearly he had some sort of WINZ related grievance. But everyone knows full well that Bennett’s comments are a euphemism for ‘mental health issues’. When I saw her saying that I persoanlly thought it smacked of discrediting guy and whatever WINZ grievance he may have. I found it offensive that thought it said more about her than him.

                    This is all academic anyway I’m sure. If the PM says he might sue Bomber I doubt he means ‘on behalf of the guy that clearly hates my guts’.

      • seeker 13.1.3

        Lanthanide
        I think ‘mental anguish’ is a better term than ‘mental instability’ in this instance.
        Extreme mental anguish can cause someone to spontaneously self harm unfortunately. That is why it is a good idea to try and desist from causing mental anguish in others, which certain governments don’t seem to take into account when coming up with unacceptable policies for fellow humans.

  14. Gosman 14

    Oh the irony of Martyn Bradbury moaning about being banned from Radio NZ National because of his views when he is well know for banning people from Tumeke for exactly the same reason.

    That stated can’t say I agree a ban is a suitable punishment. Perhaps being advised that statements which can be deemed defamatory should be best avoided.

    [lprent: So far I haven’t seen anyone demonstrate that the Bomber made ANY potentially defamatory comments (within Lange vs Atkinson – the test is pretty clear). ]

    • McFlock 14.1

      Tumeke’s a public broadcaster?

      • Gosman 14.1.1

        Did I claim,or even imply, that it was?

        • Tiger Mountain 14.1.1.1

          One of the few reasons I could ever seriously contemplate running a blog is for the admittedly small pleasure of sticking it to the likes of you Gossie. Blogs can be almost whatever the publishers want them to be unlike public radio which has broadcasting standards and some obligations of “balance” to operate by.
          The tory turds at Crosby Textor and the beehive seem to have decided too many voter ear drums are being delivered to Bomber and his on the mark descriptions of our beloved Prime mincer’s antics.

        • McFlock 14.1.1.2

          Either you claimed it was, or you were just comparing chalk and cheese and calling it “irony”. Either way, get a dictionary.

    • fmacskasy 14.2

      Gosman, you’ve made the same allegation on my blog as well, through your most recent comment. I hate to break it to you, but I you weren’t banned from my blog because I disagreed with you – I simply found your repetitious comments boring. Disagree with me all you like, but if I start to get bored, then I lose interest.

      That is not meant to be insulting. I’m just suggesting you need to re-visit your writing style.

      You also need to understand that there is a lightyear of difference between private blogs, where you post your comments at the “pleasure” of the Blog-owners (as an aside, I once left a fairly innocuous post on an American Republican website. It was removed very quickly. Ok, fair enough, I took the hint and did not return.), and Radio NZ.

      By contrast, Bradbury was regularly INVITED to share his left-wing views on RNZ’s afternoon Panel – just as David Farrar was invited on regular occassions to give us his right wing views.

      Banning someone for doing what you invited him to do in the first place seems bizarre.

      • Gosman 14.2.1

        What utter BS Frank. You were shown up for being an intellectual light weight when it came to understanding some basic principles of economics and couldn’t answer simple questions regarding matters such as what does ‘Clean Stadiums’ mean.

        Instead of acknowledging your errors or at least attempting to answer the questions you decided to take the cowards way out delete the comments which highlight your flawed thinking. You and Martyn Bradbury are being hypocrites when it comes to claiming your views are being censored when you do the same on your blogs all the time.

        That stated I actually disagree that he should be banned. Jim Mora just needs to make it plain to his panelists that [deleted] and controversial subjects should be couched in a manner that makes it plain that they are opinion and not fact.

        [lprent: So far I haven’t seen anyone demonstrate that the Bomber made ANY potentially defamatory comments (within Lange vs Atkinson – the test is pretty clear). However asserting (without any backing) that he made defamatory comments is probably defamatory. But applying the principle you’re suggesting should apply, perhaps I should start banning people who make defamatory assertions about non-politicians that they cannot substain. 😈 ]

        • Frank Macskasy 14.2.1.1

          “Instead of acknowledging your errors or at least attempting to answer the questions you decided to take the cowards way out delete the comments which highlight your flawed thinking. ”

          I deleted nothing, Gosman (except for the occassional typo).

          I actually add +++ Updates +++ to my Blog.

          However, considering your dissatisfaction with the management of my blog, I assume you will practice a classical neo-liberal response, whereby,

          1. You take your “business” elsdewhere.

          2. You set up your own blog, in competition to me.

          I wish you well for the future.

        • Gosman 14.2.1.2

          I stated potentially defamatory and I refer back to my previous comment on this. At the momemt we have someone in RNZ thinking it might be and someone such as yourself thinking it isn’t. I haven’t stated that it is defamatory as my knowledge of the law is obviously not as great as yours.

    • mik e 14.3

      the only one that tells lies is penoKEYo

  15. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 15

    Surely, the larger question is, why does a grown man call himself “Bomber”? Does he think violence is clever and funny?

    • r0b 15.1

      Never picked you as the PC-gone-mad type OBB.  How about all those dangerous loonies in bomber jackets – are they next on your list?

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 15.1.1

        He can call himself what he likes. I can point out that he is a dick for doing so.

        Only next time the left wants to wail about the violent imagery supposedly used by the right, they might want to remember their good friend Bomber thinks bombing is cool.

        • Lanthanide 15.1.1.1

          “their good friend Bomber thinks bombing is cool.”

          [citation needed]

        • McFlock 15.1.1.2

          More to the point, why do YOU believe that a nickname carried forward from one’s youth is a “larger question” than the poss/probability that the PM’s office interfering in order to get criticism removed from our public broadcaster?

    • Lanthanide 15.2

      Why are you assuming that nickname necessarily has anything to do with munitions?

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 15.2.1

        You’re probably right. It’s probably something to do with kittens and bunnies and cup cakes.

    • higherstandard 15.3

      In his case Bomber is short for bombastic – a tag that stuck from his university days.

      Can’t understand why people don’t just ignore him – he is pretty much irrelevant outside of his own little circle.

      • mik e 15.3.1

        Lowering the standard again freedom of speech is defended by the right in their endless rhetoric but in practice they stoop to any level to deny criticism.

    • fmacskasy 15.4

      Dunno, Ole… we should ask the Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote?

      (By the way, I think I get your style now… )

    • mike 15.5

      “Surely, the larger question is, why does a grown man call himself “Bomber”?”

      The guy’s nickname is a larger question than that of media censorship?

      Surely, you’re wrong.

      Troll grade: D-

  16. infused 16

    I can’t stand bomber. Never have (way before I was interested in politics). Less I hear from him the better.

    • Lanthanide 16.1

      I don’t care for him either.

      But if they’re going to ban him from RNZ for what he did, they should be fair and ban everyone else that makes the same transgressions.

  17. JS 17

    Time for the 99% to stand up to the 1%.

  18. The Dompost hasn’t run the story yet, but this relates to it: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/5739737/Spat-after-man-tries-to-jump-at-Parliament?comment_msg=posted#post_comment

    Leave a comment folks! Time to push this in every direction!

    • AAMC 18.1

      Hmmm, they didn’t post my comment, wasn’t over the top or anything, isn’t it strange that no pots have been added since you provided this link…

  19. Jum 19

    And just to add to the 1951 retro shutdown of democracy by a National government, we have this:

    How factual was that official’s comment about handing out leaflets?

    Is it illegal for a protestor to hand out a leaflet?

    If so, where is it legal? Under the New Zealand flag of our democracy?

  20. Comments can be left here, on RNZ’s Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/RadioNewZealand

  21. King Kong 21

    So I wonder which is more likely. RNZ gave Bomber the boot because;

    a) John Key was so scared of the potential damage from the rantings of an unknown lunatic that he strong armed RNZ into banning Bomber from the airwaves (but didn’t include the credible commentators from the left who also have a crack at him)

    or

    b) Some shouty little nob jockey got fired so he could be replaced by someone who could represent the left without embarrasing the whole movement.

  22. r0b 22

    Update 3: Good to see that 3News is now on the case: Blogger Bomber banned from RNZ for criticism of Key.

  23. Gordon Campbell makes similar points to the many above.

    He also focuses on RNZ – in the person of Jim Mora – ‘reaching for the lifeboat of triviality’ after Bradbury’s comment, which highlights the instinct to distract from, avoid and belittle any serious political discussion on a public broadcaster.

    What on earth were they thinking? Anyone with even a skerrick (sp?) of democratic impulse would realise the impropriety of this reaction. 

  24. mike 24

    Not a shit show in hell that Key will sue Bomber for defamation. Rank empty threat. Trying to discredit a critic and make him shut up. Sociopaths are paranoid about being outed for what they really are. Key could just ignored it, but he went after the threat. He thinks he can bully the guy into going away. But it could backfire and actually become a news story. That’s where they trip up, when they start thinking they can out-play everyone and their ego gets away on them.

    I really hope I’m wrong though. Please John Key, sue Bomber and then have to defend your own character in a court of law. Can’t see it. Pure bullying bluff.

    • King Kong 24.1

      Surely if Key is a “sociopath” and really wanted to silence one of the most unimportant politcial mouthpieces in the country then he would just have Bomber murdered. He must know lots of dodgy people who could do it from his time in the evil shadowwy world of banking.

      Honestly do you guys ever stop to listen to yourselves.

      • Colonial Viper 24.1.1

        Ahem. Seems like you don’t know what the fuck being ‘sociopathic’ means.

        • King Kong 24.1.1.1

          pretty sure I do;

          “a person, as a psychopathic personality, whose behavior is antisocial and who lacks a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience. ”

          That sounds like someone who wouldn’t have many qualms murdering someone who annoyed them.

          • McFlock 24.1.1.1.1

            But nor would they have an overwhelming compulsion. They’d be able to look at say the damage an unfettered “bomber” could do, vs the risk of being caught commissioning a contract killing, and would probably just decide to have a quiet word with RNZ. A higher-functioning one, anyway.

          • William Joyce 24.1.1.1.2

            Gerry is good at throwing his weight around. On second thoughts he’s more of a Herman Goring street brawler than a patient Dealy Plaza sniper.
            Tony Ryall could do it. Finlayson could do it. Joyce could do it and say he was merely constructing a by-pass and that the plans had been filed with the council office for sometime.
            Murray couldn’t do it – he would shoot someone else or even himself.
            Though not a sniper and more of a brown nose is Chris Tremaine. He would do anything for his beloved leader – but I think he’s more of fast car in the night hit and run type of guy.
            Tau would just headbut him and break his nose.
            As for Crusher Collins….well I couldn’t say that here….but it would be long and slow…a mixture of pleasure and pain…..involve leather and would leave you blubbering, senseless and out of your mind.

          • mike 24.1.1.1.3

            Pretty sure you don’t. Wow. It’s a only a small minority of psychopaths that have a compulsion to kill. Some people call them ‘failed psychopaths’ because they couldn’t control their impulses; usually they have abused childhoods. Most of them never consider murder as an option since it’s just too risky. Most of them get their kicks from dominating other people psychologically, and inflict damage on their victims that way.

            Unlike yourself monkey king, John Key is an intelligent guy. Of course he’s not going to put out a ‘hit’ on Bomber for fuck’s sake. Why take such a massive risk when he can just tell RNZ to ban him and thus send a message to others that if they like appearing on RNZ they’d better not look too hard at John Key? But if you think that disqualifies him from being a sociopath then you have no clue what a sociopath is.

            Jesus Christ I really think we deserve a better class of troll than this.

          • mik e 24.1.1.1.4

            KK Andrers brevik is in jail right now

      • fmacskasy 24.1.2

        …Surely if Key is a “sociopath” and really wanted to silence one of the most unimportant politcial mouthpieces in the country then he would just have Bomber murdered….

        Kong, honestly do you ever stop to listen to yourself?

        We’re discussing John Key – Tory politician. Not John Key – Hannibal Lechter wannabe. You’re in the wrong Parallel Universe, mate…

  25. seeker 25

    Tapu Misa has written a good article in the Herald on DJ John Key.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10757805

    Towards the end she says:

    “It may be hard to avoid the symbiotic nature of the relationship between the media and politicians, as former British Prime Minister Tony Blair argued when asked about his too close relationship with media mogul Rupert Murdoch in the wake of the phone hacking scandal this year.

    We’ve become inured to lines being blurred in the media, between news and commentary, and news and entertainment. But we should all be alert to the dangers of blurring the line between politicians and the media.”

    “banality of evil” (Hannah Arendt 1961) alert !

    A comment in The Guardian by David Pavett on Aug.17.11 said this:
    “I find the idea that evil is the result of banal motives very helpful. When people believe that evil is some kind of special force that afflicts specific individuals they see it as something apart from themselves. If we rather see evil as our failure to be fully alert to our responsibilities then this apparent downgrading of the idea becomes something much more powerful because it points to something of which we are all capable.”
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/audio/2011/aug/17/big-ideas-podcast-banality-of-evil

    Bomber was entirely right to say what he said on RNZ . He articulated the issues well and was “fully alert to his responsibilities” as a commentator and recounter of facts. He did not fudge, trivialise or avoid the issues but hindered the possible arising of the ‘banality of evil’ by hitting it head on, however painful that may be to some.

  26. Russell Brown calls Bradbury’s first paragraph feckless conspiracy-mongering:

    What does a $43 million loan to Mediaworks buy you on Radio Live – apparently an hour of John Key avoiding answering any questions on politics. Why pay Mediaworks $43 million for that, when John Key can appear on Close Up and not answer questions for free.

    I think I’ve seen similar feckless conspiracy-mongering here at times. I have never seen it censored here – and I think the RNZ over reaction was not habdled well.

    • lprent 26.1

      I suspect that it is feckless conspiracy-mongering, but if it is never raised then it provides room for corruption to grow. More importantly given the circumstances, I’m still not sure that it is not corruption.

      It is a valid question to ask because it does look like like an awfully cozy relationship between politicians and media with a lot of money involved. Pretty much the same question has been raised in the house by several parties for the same reason. The mediaworks licensing deal looks rather too much like a sweetheart deal to me. The explanations to date have never explained to me why it was made.

      The access given to John Key can be credibly cast as part of the other side to a sweetheart deal. If Key and his minders didn’t want io b viewed that way, then they should have avoided the appearance of impropriety (or worse) and stayed at arms length. They aren’t in opposition anymore, they are in government, and the expectations are quite different.

      • Pete George 26.1.1

        I agree that Key should not have put himself in a positiion of being open to repeat rubbish on this, but I think it’s got more to do with deliberate trivialising of the public face of politics than money.

    • Puddleglum 26.2

      No conspiracy in any formal sense of the word. But there’s plenty of evidence for the subtle influence on our actions, beliefs and decisions of the actions of others.

      Think about it this way, Pete George: when I help my neighbour out, there is a long-evolved tendency for my neighbour to experience a sense of obligation to either help me out in return or, less directly, to resist speaking ill of me (even if the occasion warrants),  be generally friendly to me, etc..

      The psychology is very clear and well-established in the research for this kind of influence (it’s also pretty obviious in our own lives). I don’t see why such a well-documented causal effect should be absent in this instance.

      As seeker put it so well, this blurring of the line between media and politics invites just this kind of influence.

      If your account of his comments is correct, then Russell Brown simply knows little about such effects. That’s not his fault, of course. 

  27. Tiger Mountain 27

    Pete, the luvvies at Public Address were never going to support Bomber, uni was far too long ago. Real politik and the next ‘self employed’ contract loom large.

    • Poor attempt to divert from the fact that Bradbury was repeating bullshit.

      • McFlock 27.1.1

        Bullshit?

        Let me put it this way – has any company NOT owned by mediaworks given ANY politician a full hour of uninterrupted publicity just weeks out from one of the last few elections? And then said “oh, it’s a regular thing, we’ll do it again next year”?

        That’s bullshit.

      • Tiger Mountain 27.1.2

        No attempt to divert tory Pete, has anyone seriously rebutted Bomber’s substantive comments about ShonKey’s economy with the truth yet?

      • Draco T Bastard 27.1.3

        Not BS. National give Mediaworks $43m dollar loan of our money and Mediaworks give John Key a 1 hour free publicity – and not give that same publicity to other parties. If MW had given such time to every party leader then it would be probable that it wasn’t bought with our money but they didn’t, they only got on the leader of the party that gave them our money.

        • Pete George 27.1.3.1

          they only got on the leader of the party that gave them our money.

          Except that no one gave them any of our money. They are giving us their money, plus interest.

          I don’t think Key should have done the talkback, but if a radio station offered me some free publicity I’d take it, I need it much more than Key or Goff.

          But continuing to moan about it simply keeps giving Radioworks more of the free publicity they were after.

          • McFlock 27.1.3.1.1

            “Except that no one gave them any of our money. They are giving us their money, plus interest”

            Um, no – we give them the right to use frequencies. They give us money. But they no give us money. They give us a little bit more money, maybe later. Their owners still take profits offshore. We have $40mill less money than we would have had right now. Oh, and Key coincidentally has his own radio show.

          • Draco T Bastard 27.1.3.1.2

            Except that no one gave them any of our money.

            Well, I suppose it’s more along the lines that they didn’t pay us what was owed.

            They are giving us their money, plus interest.

            At how much less than market rates because if it’s not less then they should have just gone to the bank. Actually, that’s what they should have done anyway. It’s not our governments job to loan our money to businesses that are a little short (not that MW was – they just didn’t want to go to the bank as it would have decreased their profits).

            • McFlock 27.1.3.1.2.1

              The only rates I gleaned from a google search (something imaginative like “mediaworks 43 million”) was 11.2%. It doesn’t say whether it’s per annum or over the 4 years, though.

              • fmacskasy

                McFlock – of course it was a LOAN. Mediaworks are paying interest, with the loan over a security;

                “…the Government allowed them to keep the frequencies and pay the money over a 50-month period – paying 11.2 per cent interest a year. The Crown held a mortgage on the frequency with a strong security. “

                As per my analysis of this issue: http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2011/10/09/politics-free-zone-tui-time/

                It fullfils every definition of a loan.

                If it ain’t, then I have bad news for my bank: the mortgages over my properties are mot “loans” at all!!

                As per usual, Key is trying to spin/BS his way out of this. *yawns*

                When the public finally wake up to this charlatan, he will fall Big Time.

      • fmacskasy 27.1.4

        Poor attempt to divert from the fact that Bradbury was repeating bullshit.

        So, let’s hang on a minute here, Pete…

        If you consider someone elses comments to be “bullshit” – then freedom of speech doesn’t apply?

        How does that work?

        Who decides if it’s “bullshit” – you?

        If you’re going to talk “deflection”, then it’s worthwhile considering that rightwingers justify Bomber’s banning as “he deserved it ‘cos he talks bullshit”. Thwey move on from the right to exptress an opinion, to deriding that opinion as “bullshit” and therefore not worth defending.

        Of course, if Labour was in government and David Farrar had been banned- migod, the venom would be flying from the right wing!

        It seems that freedom of speech to certain quarters applies only if you nod your head in approval to the sentiments expressed. Defending freedom of speech is always much more difficult when you vehemently oppose the opinion.

        There’s an old saying, “I disagree with what you are saying, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.”

        Here in good ole NZ, it’s more a case of “I disagree with what you are saying, and don’t expect me to break a fingernail to protect your right to say it”.

  28. big bruv 28

    Well done RNZ, this action is to be applauded.

    • Tiger Mountain 28.1

      Lol Bruv. Do ‘backwoods boys’ even know the frequency for RNZ let alone listen to it?

  29. ianmac 29

    big bruv. You sound like a child with Oppositional Syndrome. You just say the opposite of whatever others say. Grow up lad or girly!

  30. madness 30

    2 4 6 8 Now we have a fascist state….

    so who said Key wasn’t like Muldoon? Silencing critics, controlling state owned companies, cowing opponents into submission…

  31. madness 31

    Gee almost like a former National Party spin doctor was running RNZ…..

  32. One of Jim’s guests at the moment is… David Farrar!

    Oh, the irony!

    Watch what you say, David, watch what you say…

    • Gosman 32.1

      David Farrar doesn’t tend to call people essentially nasty pieces of work on air or even on his blog very often. He is quite moderate. Unless of course you have something you have difficulty locating a lot of the time, namely evidence, suggesting he does.

      • McFlock 32.1.1

        True – he tends to say that “some notable bloggers [WOlink] have accused politician X as being a nasty piece of work”.

        Reducing the stink by adding a layer of slime.

  33. Jellytussle 33

    I was pleased to receive a response to my email in support of Bomber from RNZ. The exact text is as follows……”

    Thanks for taking the time to contact Radio New Zealand. We appreciate feedback from our regular listeners and I can assure you that your comments about Martyn Bradbury have been noted and passed on to the relevant people at Radio New Zealand National.

    Radio New Zealand has monitored and noted the on-line, email, and blog discussions over recent days relating to The Panel and Martyn Bradbury’s performance last week. There are several points that need to be made.

    Mr Bradbury has not been banned from Radio New Zealand. He was told that his invitation to appear as a future panellist on Afternoons had been withdrawn but there was no suggestion that it applied to other programmes.
    Radio New Zealand received many complaints from listeners regarding Mr. Bradbury’s comments on The Panel during Afternoons with Jim Mora last Thursday.

    The decision to withdraw Mr. Bradbury’s invitation to take part in future editions of The Panel was made by the programme’s Executive Producer immediately after the programme. That decision was supported by the senior manager responsible for the programme and subsequently by the Chief Executive and Editor-in-Chief.

    Mr. Bradbury’s invitation to participate on The Panel was withdrawn because his personal comments about the Prime Minister were deemed to be in breach of Radio New Zealand’s editorial requirements for fairness and balance. One of his comments was regarded as being potentially defamatory. The segment in question was removed from the Radio New Zealand website because it was considered to be potentially defamatory and Radio New Zealand has a duty to protect the organization against defamation proceedings.

    Participants on The Panel on Afternoons with Jim Mora are given plenty of latitude to express personal opinions but it is expected that these will be presented for engagement and discussion and that panellists will conform to Radio New Zealand’s editorial policies and broadcast standards. A relationship of trust and confidence between the programme presenter, producers, and panellists is essential for the programme to be effective.

    Mr Bradbury’s comments on The Panel on Afternoons last Thursday were inconsistent with information he had provided to programme producers before going on air and Mr Bradbury later apologised to the programme’s Executive Producer.
    It was made clear to him that while his invitation to appear as an occasional guest on The Panel was being withdrawn, it was not a ‘lifelong ban’.

    I hope this information clarifies some of the issues that have been raised over the last few days.

    Thanks again for your email…….”

    • Carol 33.1

      Jellytussle, this response from RNZ looks pretty much like the one Bomber commented on today on his blog. He claims that this is not the same as what he was told on the phone call on Friday from RNZ:

      http://tumeke.blogspot.com/2011/10/why-i-was-banned-from-rnz.html

      Well this is a different story to the one I was told on Friday morning by RNZ. At no time was defamation mentioned to me as the justification, I was told my criticism was over the top and that I would be banned. The defamation reason is an excuse on the hop, they are just making it up as they go along.

      Let’s note, I didn’t have my ‘invitation withdrawn’, I was banned, that was the word used during my Friday morning phone call and they know it. The reason given was my criticism of the PM breached their magically ill defined ‘editorial requirements for fairness and balance’.

      It was an opinion piece segment.

      I gave my opinion.

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