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Connell evasive over trip

Written By: - Date published: 9:24 am, March 13th, 2008 - 24 comments
Categories: national - Tags:

Brian Connell won’t say whether he’s planning on taking his wife on the taxpayer-funded Speaker’s tour.

In the clip below Faafoi asks Connell 18 times and still can’t get a straight answer as Connell gets increasingly abusive.

— Leftie Infighting Alert!!—

Steve Pierson: I back Connell on this, eccentric old bigot though he is.

There are much more important stories Faafoi could have covered. For example, English saying he would borrow to fund tax cuts, Carter saying National would sell Landcorp, and Key and APN management interfering with journalistic freedom.

MP tours are a normal diplomatic practice. Parliament has a delegation of foreign MPs observing from the gallery every few sitting days (you’ve never been truly embarrassed until you’ve sat next to a befuddled group of Tanzanian MPs while your country’s Opposition tries to shout down your Prime Minster as she answers a question they asked her). And having spouses along is a normal diplomatic practice. Yes, it’s a perk of the job, but lots of jobs have perks.

It is hypocritical of journalists to get on their high horses over perks when they’re renowned exploiters of perks themselves. Just on Tuesday, Vernon Small was complaining about the quality of the free grub at the New Zealand Fast Forward launch. If you want to empty the press gallery in record time, don’t yell fire; yell ‘free food and booze’.

TVNZ is trying to make a fool of Connell (not that he’s ever needed help) but they just look like bullies, and, once again, we see that political journalists really just want to talk about themselves.


24 comments on “Connell evasive over trip ”

  1. illuminatedtiger 1

    Must be a “yes”!

  2. the sprout 2

    i think Connell’s a knob, albeit a useful one for Labour, but i also think Faafoi is risking building some support for Connell if he carries on with that style of “interview” technique.
    it just looks petty and childish on the msm’s behalf.

  3. Tane 3

    I have to say I feel a bit of sympathy for Connell here. Still, he looks like a knob.

  4. gobsmacked 4

    Breaking news: Labour MP tells the media to “piss off”. Right-wing blogosphere erupts. Herald editorial slams “arrogant and out of touch” government. Talkback host spontaneously combusts, live on air.

    Clark says MP not actually in the caucus, nobody listens.

  5. Steve Pierson 5

    I had drafted this big post supporting Connell (“detestable bigot though he is”) but all_your_base gets up eariler than I do.

  6. higherstandard 6

    Almost as humerous as Marion Hobbs’ commentary

    “I don’t know too much about the purpose. I think it’s about MMP. I’m not sure.”

    “Jun-ket “, noun, ::a chance to establish reciprocal relations with countries in wider Europe.Support trade relationships, and MPS would also look at constitutional arrangements and parliamentary systems of other countries.

  7. Tane 7

    Almost as humerous as Marion Hobbs’ commentary “I don’t know too much about the purpose. I think it’s about MMP. I’m not sure.’

    In Marion’s defense she was quoted completely out of context. My sources tell me Colin Espiner actually wrote her an apology, he felt so bad about how the story was subbed.

  8. gobsmacked 8


    Hobbs’ comments were unfortunate. But you know damn well that if she had behaved as Connell does in that clip, there would be total “outrage” (of the manufactured kind) among all the usual suspects, and the Apocalypse would be announced.

    This is all trivial stuff, in the greater scheme of things – the difference is, we’re willing to say so, whereas if the situation were reveresed, the RWNJ’s would be desperately milking it for all it’s worth.

  9. insider 9

    I loved the bit – TVNZ journalists are the first in for any freebies going.

    Ah the media, accountable to no-one, high horses, thin skins and large egos a specialty.

  10. Santi 10

    You can compare both, Connel and Hobbs, to leeches blood sucking the taxpayer’s back.

    Both are despicable. These people know no shame.

    Where are their leaders? Boy Key and Clark appear to support this junket.

    The Speaker tour is not the issue. I support it. The point here is these soon-to-depart politicians are having a free ride at our expense.

  11. Steve Pierson 11

    a_y_b has said I should attach my post below his. Lefties not singing from the same page! no doubt there’ll be a call from the ninth floor within minutes.

  12. all_your_base 12

    I’ve got no problem with the trip itself, in fact I thought Key actually handled it quite reasonably yesterday when interviewed by Paul Henry on Breakfast. I’m not sure about taking spouses though. It’s not clear to me quite how they contribute to the diplomatic value of the endeavour. Strange that Rich didn’t want to take her husband and kids though, wasn’t the National spin that she was leaving Parliament to spend more time with them? 😉

  13. deemac 13

    people who think a trip to the parliaments of Europe and to Auschwitz are a junket, must have an odd idea of fun!

  14. Ari 14

    The trip itself is fine. Businesses send people to useless conferences a lot to network-build, too, and that’s essentially all this is. If we don’t do this sort of thing, we’ll fall behind diplomatically. Sad reality.

    The thing that would strike me as the real story here is that they’re sending retiring MPs. It would be nice if Parliament didn’t do silly things like this that act like it was campaigning on its work time, so to speak, even though that’s certainly not entirely true as a general statement.

    The other problem is really that MPs never fly economy, they bring spouses without paying for them, etc… Come on National, if you care about wasting public money, set an example for once. 😉

  15. westmere 15

    TV news tonight: leaders linked with celebrities

    Brian Connell and Bill English
    Shania Twain and Helen Clark

    heh heh heh …

  16. Do you have the Video of Marion Hobbs running away and avoiding the media, and if not, I wonder why??? hmmmmmmm.

  17. r0b 17

    Well Brett, if you don’t like the material, you could always start your own blog.

  18. Tane 18

    I haven’t seen it Brett, but feel free to post it in the comments section if it exists. In any case, I can’t imagine Marion running from the media. Last I heard the media were apologising to her for misquoting her on the Speaker’s tour.

  19. george 19

    I think Connell hit the nail on the head with his “Slow news day?” comment. really, I couldn’t care one way or the other if Connell does take his wife. Far more important issues like whether Key was putting pressure on the NZ media. Faafoi would have better spent his time tracking down that story. Connell was rude but not out of line in my opinion, even though he did not want to answer the question.

  20. Phil 20

    Tane, last I heard was they were making the same comments again this morning. Guyon Espiner on breakfast made no hint of apology when he bought it up again…

  21. Tane 21

    It was Colin Espiner who apologised to Hobbs, not Guyon.

  22. randal 22

    once we had a national airline where pollies got flown around the world for free. now we have a gang of venal newspapers looking for any story than takes no cognisance of our place in the world and the need to get our people out into the world. Going somewhere translates into puerile venal jealousy instead of pushing for not only pollies but librarians, policemen, educators et al being allowed to go out into the world to contrast and compare and bring back the cosmopolitanism that we so desparately need here in our insular petty state wracked by manques who only see airtravel as a status marker instead of a tool…mindboggling!

  23. Higherstandard 23

    Randal what a load of drivel.

    The is a vast amount of NZers who travel the world and come back far more cosmopolitan for the experience.

    A speakers tour to eastern Europe for a number of soon to be ex MPs is a prima facie waste of money

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