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Dirty Politics on Nine to Noon

Written By: - Date published: 11:18 am, April 21st, 2015 - 154 comments
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Matthew Hooton’s attack on Nicky Hager’s journalistic credentials on Nine to Noon yesterday (at 21:35) was straight out of the “Dirty Politics” playbook. Kathryn Ryan wasn’t impressed and neither was I. Coincidentally Hager spoke last week about his investigative journalism – you can judge for yourself who spoke the truth.

Hager’s book defines and describes Dirty Politics as the politics of covert personal attacks made because of a person’s political beliefs. Hooton features in the book, most notably as responding along with Cameron Slater to Cathy Odgers’ request for Hager’s address so her Chinese billionaire clients could target him. Really nasty stuff.

And we don’t need to be in any doubt about Hooton’s politics. He has defined them himself in Hager’s previous book “The Hollow Men.” He wanted his master Don Brash to be very clear that he was not a populist but  “a right-wing academic neocon ultra.”

You can listen to Nicky Hager’s own definition of his work here in an address he gave last week to the Fabian Society in Wellington. Hager says  investigative journalists dig out facts the powerful don’t want people to know. Their role is quite different from the spin doctor, whose job is to create perceptions to hide things the powerful don’t want the people to know.

Hooton’s parting shot was that if Nicky Hager was to be defined as a journalist he wanted to be introduced on Nine to Noon as the All Black captain. Fat chance.

I’ve got a better idea. Instead of introducing Hooton as a “proprietor of a public relations company and speaker from the right” Kathryn Ryan could use his own description – “a right-wing academic neocon.”

It would be closer to the truth.

 

154 comments on “Dirty Politics on Nine to Noon”

  1. Michael 1

    I don’t think it’s correct to describe Hooton as an “academic”, when he’s just another spin doctor, peddling lies and filth for whoever wants to pay him. FWICS, few people do these days because he’s lost access to Honest John’s inner circle. There’s nothing academic about this.

    • mac1 1.1

      I had the same concern about the use of ‘academic’ to describe a businessman and media worker. So I googled the word. Apart from being a person who either works in or practises the intellectual methods of a learning institution, we have this gold……..

      3. Having little practical use or value, as by being overly detailed, unengaging, or theoretical: e.g. “dismissed the article as a dry, academic exercise.”
      4. Having no important consequence or relevancy: e.g. “The debate about who is to blame has become academic because the business has left town.”

      • Charles 1.1.1

        Well I’d kinda hope that, even in a colloquial sense, an “academic” would know what an ad hominem attack was, and be able to identify the string of cognitive bias’ that followed Kathryn Ryan’s long sigh of frustrated resignation at about 21:40mins.

        But this is New Zealand. We run, more or less, like an episode of Father Ted:

        DRINK!
        FLAG!
        ANZAC!
        FECK!

        You know, Hooten’s voice sounds a lot like an up-tight, less “academic”, Murray Cammick. Cammick is, off course, far more coherent, journalistically able, and interesting.

        “Tune in for a review of the week’s political diseases, convened by Kathryn Ryan, and funked-up by your academic speaker of the groove, Murray Cammick.”

        I’m just putting it out there.

    • Chooky 1.2

      +100 Michael …agreed….no way is Matthew Hooton an academic….which implies scholarship integrity and a commitment to telling the truth

      • Murray Rawshark 1.2.1

        Being an academic might imply those qualities, Chooky, but it doesn’t guarantee them. That was an unpleasant lesson I learned when I entered academia.

        • Chooky 1.2.1.1

          yes agree totally….that is why i used the term “implies”

          ….but it is the principle that is important ….and it would not even be on Hooton’s radar let alone modus operandi

  2. saveNZ 2

    Totally agree with

    Hager says investigative journalists dig out facts the powerful don’t want people to know.

    Their role is quite different from the spin doctor, whose job is to create perceptions to hide things the powerful don’t want the people to know.

    I guess there is the added problem of the TV networks ideas that the news should be entertainment.

    • Chooky 2.1

      +100

    • fisiani 2.2

      Hager does not dig out facts. He gets spoon fed by a traitor. He quotes selectively from stolen documents. He is not therefore fact finding journalist but merely a mouthpiece of the Left with a clear and biased opinion. He is a writer but not a journalist.

      [lprent: If you want to draw a conclusion, then perhaps you’d better fill out the logic.

      For instance your logic – what makes you think that the “stolen documents” came from a left source? As I understand it, the Dirty Politics documents came from a rather disgusting right source (Cameron Slater) and were hacked by someone who dislikes that arsehole for attacking some dead boys as being “ferals”. Essentially that Cameron Slater is a disgusting right wing fuckwit appears to have driven the whole of that.

      Second, if you were talking about Snowden, then explain why is he a “traitor” to NZ? Making an assertion of fact without any logic isn’t opinion. It is just simpleminded lying.

      I’m going to start banning idiots running this kind of idiotic smear with spurious unexplained ‘logic’ like without showing their reasoning. To me it sounds like pointless personal abuse of third parties with manufactured bullshit lines. It just sounds like some idiot PR hack jerking strings. ]

      • stever 2.2.1

        “He gets spoon fed by a traitor.”

        Leaving aside “traitor” for now….what is it that he gets spoon fed (and which your sentence seems to have deliberately left unsaid)?

      • That is my view. And I don’t see what is so inaccurate or insulting about saying Nicky Hager is a far-left activist. As Kathryn Ryan said, what’s wrong with that? My only issue is when he gets presented in the media as some sort of “journalist” without any qualification whatsoever. He is given information by sources who are politically motivated to harm the political right, the Western military alliance, the GM or logging industries or whatever, and then he writes that up, again with a political motivation. That is all fine, good on him. But its political PR not journalism.

        • felix 2.2.2.1

          ” I don’t see what is so inaccurate or insulting about saying Nicky Hager is a far-left activist. As Kathryn Ryan said, what’s wrong with that? “

          Yep that explains the calm rational and dispassionate way you presented this uncontroversial information.

          • Gosman 2.2.2.1.1

            Matthew Hooton is not claiming to be an independent journalist without an agenda. Indeed the whole piece he appears in is basically subtitled ‘From the right and from the left’ or something along those lines. He is quite open and up front about his political affiliations. Nicky Hager attempts to hide his behind the title ‘Investigative Journalist’.

            • lprent 2.2.2.1.1.1

              Huh? Again, who are you comparing to?

              Hager hides his opinions about as much as that notable extreme right wing boofhead Mike Hosking does – that is to say not at all.

              But you are confusing competence with inclinations.

              To me, Hosking (or Paul Henry for that matter) don’t attempt to research anything that they are talking about beyond the most shallow and simple level. Hosking to find a fact or two that he can spin his argument that comes purely from his artificially enhanced ego and the pay packets of his PR deals with the likes of Skycity. Henry researches about as far as the nearest cheap laugh. Neither has any credibility despite their political inclinations because they are incompetent as journalists or even as entertainers.

              Hager has his inclinations, mainly about justice and fairness as far as I can tell, but bases his pieces in facts that can be proved or disproved by others rather than the stiffened egos of the clowns of media. At least those are who I presume (in the absence of you offering alternatives)

              Who you should be comparing against is someone like Fran O’Sullivan who has business inclinations towards the right, an impressive ability to dig out facts and argue from them, and who I disagree with almost as much as I do with Nicky Hager.

              Both are competent journalists, both have opinions and inclinations, and both are worth listening to (and disagreeing with). Rather than have shallow fools like yourself simply smearing, presumably because you are too stupid to do anything else, how about explaining your arguments about the evidence that they both use. It’d be a damn sight more interesting than hearing you making a dork of yourself.

              [this is comment in the style of a typical gosman strawman smearing, except with more logic]

              • Lanthanide

                Calling Mike Hosking “extreme right wing” is about as accurate as calling Nicky Hagar “far-left wing”.

              • Colin Espiner

                Can we please get the record straight once and for all on Mike Hosking? Mike has had no commercial association whatsoever with SKYCITY. He has no ‘PR deal’ with us. He receives nothing from us, either in cash or kind. Anything Mike says is entirely his own view. If he says something positive about SKYCITY, that’s great – but it’s not because of any association with us.

                It would be good to have this corrected once and for all, and many people on the Standard continue to perpetrate this assumption as fact.

                • lprent

                  He may not now or previously have had a job or a contract with you. However that really doesn’t mean that he isn’t used as part of a PR profile.

                  I’m basing it on this article.

                  Mike Hosking stood to gain up to $48,000 this year in cash and perks from casino giant SkyCity, according to financial information obtained by the Herald on Sunday.

                  The information projects a $2000-per-month payment and up to 2000 “points”, set aside for him to spend at the casino’s hospitality facilities. Hosking is said to have carried out regular work there.

                  Former RadioLive host Paul Henry was also to be paid $2000 per month cash, potentially, and up to 3000 points. That deal would be worth almost as much as the average wage of $54,000.

                  Both men also earn hundreds of thousands of dollars through lucrative radio and television contracts. It is not clear whether they collected this year’s projected payments: neither broadcaster would discuss the deal, though friends of Hosking have insisted he works for his money, regularly MCing and doing commercial work.

                  Some celebrities were sponsored, some received a “chairman’s card” allowing them free rooms, meals and drinks, and others got both.

                  My italics.

                  And others like this one

                  I listened to Hosking explaining it back in 2012. However that was a rather carefully worded ‘clarification’ that didn’t exactly address the italicized bit above.

                  Effectively what he said was that he didn’t contract with Skycity apart from whatever he did as a MC or whatever. But you don’t have to have a contract or job to have a PR deal. Contras are rampant anywhere around the bullshitting trades and hospitality industries.

                  What was alleged was that there were inducements to get him to spend time at Skycity. I’d count that as being a PR deal even if it didn’t originate among the spinners and happened at the floor. Skycity is a big organisation and with a lot of different parts of the organisation. So far I haven’t seen anything that particularly says to me that the Herald writers were incorrect. And yes, I know how hard it is to prove a negative. But Hosking has tended so much towards the effusive whenever he even mentions Skycity that I am deeply suspicious.

                  So I’ll proceed with the assumption that it was a correct statement from the Herald. Your argument is with the Herald. But if it helps, I’ll mention that you disagree with it.

                  • Colin Espiner

                    Hi again,

                    Mike Hosking is not used by us in any form, way, shape, or form. He is not part of a PR profile. He is not induced to come to SKYCITY, and we don’t ask for his endorsement. He is a completely free agent.

                    I’m not sure how much clearer I can be.

                    The Herald on Sunday story was not accurate, but I accept that is between us and the Herald.

                    I’m just asking, for the sake of accuracy, if you’d refrain from claims that Mike has any association, of any form whatsoever, with us – because he doesn’t.

                    Best

                    Colin

                    • tracey

                      What changed?

                    • lprent

                      Forgive my scepticism, but it is quite real. I’ll store a link to your comments and when I mention my scepticism at his next effusive outpouring on the joys of expanding problem gambling, I’ll mention the denials of a connection.

        • weka 2.2.2.2

          In the same way that you commenting on Nine to Noon is not political commentary from the right, but out and out PR spin?

          /sarc

          That Hager ‘s politics are left wing doesn’t preclude him from being a journalist. Unless you want to say that John Armstrong isn’t a journalist. Or Fran O’Sullivan.

          “And I don’t see what is so inaccurate or insulting about saying Nicky Hager is a far-left activist”

          Hager isn’t far left, but thanks for proving my point in advance.

        • lprent 2.2.2.3

          But its political PR not journalism.

          Nope. And what in the hell are you comparing to?

          Lets look at some political PR from the right for example.

          Farrar largely ignores evidence to create a picture based on on bugger all. Slater just invents lies. You rant pretty well ignoring any facts and just pouring out your feelings. In all of these cases what is common is a malicious streak and a complete inability to document why you came to a conclusion.

          What I like about Nicky Hager, even when I disagree with him (which is often), is that he meticulously documents why he came to an opinion. To me that is the essence of journalism. Like science, in journalism, you need to be able to demonstrate to a court of peers (lawyers share much of the same respect for logic chains) the chain of thinking from data to conclusion.

          You never do show any logic chains. Instead you bluster with unfounded assertions. It usually just looks like simple bigotry rather than anything “academic”. Which is why I think that you keep away from anything with a factual basis.

          In the extreme case of a lying fuckwit like Cameron Slater, it leads to defamation cases because he deliberately makes up his “facts” when he finds it convenient.

          I agree that you and they are political PR practitioners and not journalists. Of course being a shallow non-fact based bullshit artists is a long and dishonourable profession in the political world. I can see why you want to smear actual journalists with the same brush. They actually work for their conclusions.

          Nicky Hager is almost the epitome of a investigative journalist. You and other pillocks of the political PR world aren’t journalists. Nor in my opinion are any of the bloggers in the political region (including blogging journalists).

          [comment made in the Hooton style]

          • Sacha 2.2.2.3.1

            Slater – and his pal Glucina with her latest attack on Campbell Live – don’t even write their own material all the time. Just conduits for malicious slime.

            [lprent: We know that Slater hasn’t in the past from Dirty Politics, and I am pretty sure from stylistic analysis he still doesn’t. However Glucina appears to write her own material. Don’t make assertions of fact that you cannot support. This one sounds like an opinion rather than fact. ]

            • Sacha 2.2.2.3.1.1

              True. I’m relaying opinion from two experienced senior journalists who separately noticed stylistic oddities in the article:

              Totally your call whether that is enough, or please delete the comment if not.

          • Matthew Hooton 2.2.2.3.2

            Almost all PR is well researched, and often footnoted. Certainly every statement can be defended if challenged. I think the distinction is when the theme is decided and the conclusion is reached. In journalism, the information is gathered, a theme emerges and then the conclusions are (or should be) reached. But in PR and in Nicky Hager’s work, the theme is pre-ordained as are the general direction of the conclusion.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.3.2.1

              “…can be defended if challenged”.

              That’s a lovely shiny euphemism for lying, Matthew. Hager, incidentally, reports on the information he can verify, and does so from an ethic that you (and I for that matter) can only observe.

              You’re jealous of his credibility and it shows, puppy.

              • + 1 The petty little spite of hooton’s jealousy is funny. Hager is like a mountain compared to the hooton molehill and hoots the lackluster try-hard knows it.

                • tracey

                  OAB & MM

                  Spot on. The raw emotion of hatred in Hoots voice on Monday was inescapable, except, it seems, to him. Hager exposed Hoots for his duplicity in Hollowmen and it still hurts. Then in Dirty Politics Hoots hatred was exposed as being so deep that he gave Hager’s street name to someone who was suggesting they knew people who wanted to harm Hager. If it were a joke one would reply “LOL” or “God I wish”…

            • sabine 2.2.2.3.2.2

              I always thought that PR was mainly there to convince people to buy stuff or elect people they don’t need/want.
              While investigative journalists often try to convince people that they are buying stuff they a. don’t need and b. is bad for them or that they have elected people that are selling us stuff we don’t need and that is bad for us.

              My bad.

        • Anne 2.2.2.4

          Except that you are wrong Matthew. Nicky Hager is a political agnostic. He has openly said as much. Sure, he is possibly not always correct with some of his conclusions but, in broad terms, he has never been proven wrong about anything. I know you were upset about his comments concerning yourself in “The Hollow Men”. Perhaps some of them were not entirely accurate, in which case I have some sympathy for you. But that doesn’t give you the right to accuse him and Edward Snowden as being treasonous individuals and to go on a ranting rampage about them in the way you did.

          And by the way he is an investigative journalist and has been acclaimed as such by well known members of the international journalistic fraternity. I value their knowledge and judgement over a right-wing PR spin merchant any day.

        • Pascals bookie 2.2.2.5

          Hey Hooton. Hager’s sources for ‘Other people’s wars’ . Do they hate the western military alliance or whatever? Traitors?

        • whateva next? 2.2.2.6

          He is balancing and contributing far more to correcting the ever increasing wealth gap than you are Mr.Hooten. Making a REAL difference, and “far left” is currently a distortion of what is used to mean, the fulcrum having shifted so far to the right, using that term is only meant to frighten off those that are afraid of losing the status quo, manipulation.

        • Pat 2.2.2.7

          only one question Matthew….whos paying for the latest mantra to be publicly voiced at every opportunity?

        • Melanie Scott 2.2.2.8

          I find it ridiculous that right wing hysterics refer to Nicky Hager as extreme left wing. Back my university days in England, Hager would have been thought of as a rather wishy washy mild mannered middle of the road liberal. O tempus, o mores.

        • tracey 2.2.2.9

          Then why did your voice rise to almost a squeal at times, and definitely got louder, and you spoke quicker, like you were angry, and upset, rather than making a point about him being in PR, like you?

          BUT he’s not like you is he Matthew?

          “motivated to harm the political right” – like Corngate when he embarrassed the Right Wing PM… Helen Clark… oh wait…

          What is your qualification Matthew? A Bachelor in Public Relations? From which University?

      • fisiani 2.2.3

        I never stated the “stolen documents” came from a Left source. That is merely your inference. Read it again.
        Second I never said that Snowden is a traitor to NZ . That again is mere inference. Read it again.
        I wish you would stop twisting my words to fit your own bias.
        PS what do you mean by manufactured bullshit lines. Do you think I am a part of a vast conspiracy?

        [lprent: Exactly my point, you didn’t say anything at all apart from making some idiotic and unconnected assertions. You sounded like a troll trying to start a flamewar. Fill out your thinking so that others understand what in the hell you are thinking.

        Otherwise I have to deal with the damn foolish conversations that happen afterwards. This isn’t OpenMike where we tolerate the more insane discussions. ]

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.3.1

          Snowden is a US patriot. Your handicap will help you reject this fact.

      • Lanthanide 2.2.4

        @ Lynn:
        “Second, if you were talking about Snowden, then explain why is he a “traitor” to NZ? Making an assertion of fact without any logic isn’t opinion. It is just simpleminded lying.”

        That’s a pretty nonsensical point to bring up. Fisiani never said Snowden was a traitor to NZ, simply that he is a traitor to an unspecified country.

        Just like I can say Obama is a President, it doesn’t mean he’s President of NZ. Or I can say Oscar Pistorius is a criminal, but that doesn’t mean he’s a criminal in NZ (or that he committed a crime in NZ, if you wish).

        • lprent 2.2.4.1

          That was my point. He didn’t join the dots, just made some unconnected assertions with no context. That means that he leaves it open for anyone to make shit up about what he was talking about.

          We all know what happens when one of those kinds of discussions happen – eh?

          But this isn’t OpenMike.

  3. Sacha 3

    From the sidebar, Peter Aranyi also has a blogpost about Hooten’s dung-flinging performance.

  4. Stickler 4

    Hooton is a busted flush.

    Everyone knows his politics, we know his availability as a hired spinner, and we know his slippery relationship with truth-telling. Credibility: hovering around zero. Influence: similar.

    The only reason he is still on National Radio is as clickbait: they want to rark people up. Or he may be a bestie of a National party board appointee – you tell me.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1

      Right wing brain syndrome guarantees him an audience: his contemporary relevance is a symptom. He is our Comical Ali.

      • marty mars 4.1.1

        comical smelly – all is shit with that spinner – but laughingly some ‘lefties’ (not you) give him some type of respect cos he’s on the radio.

  5. And thenthere'sme 5

    It’s no surprise that a paid-for corporate whore like Hooton is outraged by men of principle such as Hager and Snowden, but Mike Williams’ response “from the left” was just embarrassing.

    • Bearded Git 5.1

      +1 And

      I thought Ryan was quite good not letting Hooton get away with the devious completely unfounded lies he leveled at Hager. She showed her ingrained journalistic credentials (despite her right-wing leanings) while Hooton showed his true colours as a spin-doctor and flag-bearer for the far-right.

      • felix 5.1.1

        I’ve been listening to Katherine Ryan on politics for several years and with several iterations of left/right wing commentators.

        I’m yet to pick up on anything resembling a right-wing leaning.

        • Chooky 5.1.1.1

          +100 felix

          • Bearded Git 5.1.1.1.1

            @felix/chooky

            I’ve listened to her for several years too-I would put money on her not voting Green/Labour/Mana.

            • Chooky 5.1.1.1.1.1

              I think she would vote Green myself…certainly not Nactional

            • felix 5.1.1.1.1.2

              I’ve honestly never been able – or wanted – to pick her leanings. She’s able to put arguments from either side of most things.

              However she is logical, and seems educated, and displays a social conscience, so I wouldn’t have guessed National.

              Quite happy not knowing though.

      • what are these lies I levelled?

        • felix 5.1.2.1

          “Not a journalist”

        • adam 5.1.2.2

          That Nicky Hagar is far left for starters. For once I agree with Boomer (which shocks me), you and your ilk are so far to the right – a Eisenhower Republican-would be called a communist traitor by you lot.

          I’m far left, and there a few more us on this site – who sit much much further to the left of Mr Hagar. Mr Hagar is a social democrat, plain and simple. To confuse the political dialogue with this lie – just makes you appear floppy.

          I’ll leave you with a quote from the ever wonderful Dorothy Day.

          “We must recognize the fact that many Nazis, Marxists and Fascists believe passionately in their fundamental rightness, and allow nothing to hinder them from their goal in the pursuit of their mission.”

        • Bearded Git 5.1.2.3

          @Hooton
          Where to start with the lies?
          1. “Nobody is remotely surprised NZ spies on China”
          2. “Raises issues of media ethics reporting this”
          3. “Snowden is a traitor.”
          4. The information was “stolen”.
          5. Hager is “a far right radical activist” and “we hear that Hager is a journalist” and “Hager is not an investigative journalist.”

          In reply:
          1. I am surprised as are many others. If you look at the MSM and posts on The Standard spying and the Snowden leaks are a hot topic.*
          2. Ryan was rightly incredulous at this.**
          3. He’s a whistleblower. The NZ public should know that we spy on China, just like it should know about the Hooton involvement in Hollow Men and DP.
          4. Snowden leaked (not stole) it because there is a public interest in the information. He has lost his freedom for this brave stand.
          5. He IS a journalist not an activist. He has shown balance in the past. Maybe you have forgotten his work criticising the Clark government? “Not an investigative journalist”-words fail me on this.

          *as Mike Williams said “this is a really dumb thing to do to a major trading partner”
          ** As Katherine Ryan said “we might just as well only run cat videos then”

          • Bearded Git 5.1.2.3.1

            @ Hooton above…@5 That should have been “far left” of course

          • Murray Rawshark 5.1.2.3.2

            “1. “Nobody is remotely surprised NZ spies on China”

            I’m not surprised, but I am disappointed. This is exactly the sort of thing I expect from the US agents that we pay to work as GCSB agents while FJK is in charge. Possibly under Andrew Little as well.

        • Paul 5.1.2.4

          Quite crazed really.
          It’s what happens when your sell your soul to extreme right wing money.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.2.4.1

            Or any slogan-based enterprise.

          • whateva next? 5.1.2.4.2

            watching Hooten’s response on twitter after Dirty Politics was published, the phrase “squeak piggy squeak” kept coming to mind

    • Anne 5.2

      … but Mike Williams’ response “from the left” was just embarrassing.

      To be fair he didn’t make a response but not through lack of trying. Hooten wouldn’t let him get a word in edgewise. Willaims managed in the last second of the programme to state the fact “nobody cares” which unfortunately is true. Nobody does. If they did, this crooked government would be long gone.

      • Hanswurst 5.2.1

        I think that, if one listens carefully, Mr. Williams’ point was actually that, while few may care directly about the narrow issue of spying on the Chinese at this point, the potential trade implications – especially given Key’s public response – might make a significant number of people care in the long run.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2.1.1

          How much practical damage will the Chinese economy suffer if they boycott all
          5-eyes products?

          I’m picking none whatsoever.

          • Hanswurst 5.2.1.1.1

            Well, exactly, which is why it is entirely conceivable that they might use de facto economic sanctions as political leverage against a country like NZ, should they so wish. The direct effects on NZ would be of little concern to China, but sending a message that smaller countries should think twice before acting as proxies for the USA in exchange for the latter’s patronage might be of use to them. Anyway, regardless of the merits of his assertion, I believe that that is the point Mr. Williams was trying to make.

  6. Chauncey Gardner 6

    Hi, Mr Hooten, you were a bit tetchy on nine to noon the other day. On a personal jihad against anyone who questions authority perchance… all those emotive words, you sound like Jihad John?

    You are smart and intellectually you do fly (I actually enjoy the way you infect conversations with your semantic twists), but yesterday and today I would have to say you were playing the part of Icarus. You flew to close the sun (called democracy) and it showed you to be wanting. More crudely put, what do you call a fly with no wings…… a walk? You walked, denigrating people like a child. I expect more subtlety from you.

    For example, you use words emotively. ….. person X is a Y (y= creep, traitor, dictator, and or political activist). Kind of formulaic no? Hummm so no part of Nicky Hagers entire lifes work is true, Vladimir Putin is just a pussy and Snowden is just a man who hates his country. Nicely pre-packaged no.

    This is my interpretation of what is going on Matt.

    The problem for us all is a simple one, do you trust the people in power ? Whats the payback to you as a citizen.

    Matt, you “trust them”, because you represent the wealthy interests (i.e. political power status quo) and there is some form of payback in that (tribal, intellectual, economic etc).
    I don’t “trust them” so much because I have read too much history (also I know myself) and are rather sceptical about humans motives (mine included) when they gain and or want to hold onto power. I do feel that the “innocent masses” will, if given half a chance turn into the very people they are trying to unsettle. A cluster fuck of humanity with each individual or group vying for ascendancy. Yeah, I know there a ton of decent caring people out there to (which is a flip side we should not forget).

    When it comes to people like Edward Snowden or Nicky Hager, my interpretation of what they stand for is this: They are simple aiming high in what they believe is right. I think Victor Hugho has a quote that sums it:

    Nations, like stars, are entitled to eclipse. All is well, provided the light returns and the eclipse does not become endless night. Dawn and resurrection are synonymous. The reappearance of the light is the same as the survival of the soul.

    If you could put accurate statistics/proof on the harm that they have caused (i.e. in economic or life terms) I am interested to hear from you Matt. If on the other hand your just defending the status quo because it benefits you, then what shall I make of you.

    Stop telling me that we should not be interested or have a view point. To tell the truth I don’t know what camp I sit in when it comes to this surveillance, a bit like Vicky Pollard from Little Britain…. “Yeah, but, no, but, yeah, but, no, but…”

    All I know is that the checks and balances must be in place. Nick, Edward and you Matt et. al. are all part of the process.

    South African novelist Njabulo Ndebele sums it up for me:

    “Democracy blurs the relationship between certitude and uncertainty. It gets people used to the experience of formulating a position in the morning, changing their minds by the afternoon, growing angry, sleeping it off, feeling different again about the same matter next morning. Democracy breeds possibility: people’s horizons of what is thinkable and doable are stretched, and it is for that reason exciting, infuriating, punctuated by difficult, quarrelsome, ugly and beautiful moments.
    ‘Democracy is not a good thing in itself. It is what makes good things possible.’ It’s the closest people get to an experience of faith: the sense that against every kind of obstacle, they have to get on with things, keep searching for what in the end will work, knowing that although they don’t know exactly where they are going things won’t happen if their arms are folded.’ Fatalism is fatal for democracy, that people’s sense of the contingency of power relations is precious, that possibility is felt most intensely when they have tasted its opposite.”

    So keep shining the light boys and girls and for god sake stop name calling… its Juvenile….

    [lprent: Or it is a goad for juveniles when they use farcical arguments. It just depends on how you look at it. Otherwise most debates would be dead boring recitation of the lowest common denominator – kind of like 60s TV. The policy states that we are here for robust debate which includes “name calling”. Why bother being polite about a dickhead acting like one? The policy also limits it in several ways, notably about “pointless abuse”. I’d strongly suggest that you look at our rules before trying to state what others should do. It will save you from a banning for a self-martyrdom offense of trying to tell us how to run our site. ]

    • Tracey 6.1

      thanks for shining your light here… do come back.

    • Tracey 6.2

      lprent, wasnt he or she addressing hooton?

      • Chauncey Gardner 6.2.1

        Tracey, yes I was addressing Hooten.

        Iprent, sorry I was not telling others what to do, it was completely addressed at Hooten with a more tongue in check tone.

        I appreciate your view however…

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.2.1.1

          *Hooton. It’s onomatopoeic.

          • adam 6.2.1.1.1

            Thank you One Anonymous Bloke – giggles all round.

          • Chauncey Gardner 6.2.1.1.2

            @One Anonymous Bloke

            Owl humor all round… tongue in check or was that cheek…

            Licking PR checks is soo much fun too…. I’m sure Hooton is Hooten all the way to the bank

    • Murray Rawshark 6.3

      Umm…I’m resonably sure Chauncey was talking about Hooton’s appearance on Nine to Noon. There’s a bit of a clue in the first paragraph.

  7. Tracey 7

    he was an extreme right wing activist. Hager exposed his duplicity and paucity of morals. he seems to hate Hager for it. He shoukd thank him. It was cheaper than therapy.

  8. Skinny 8

    As a regular listener and watcher of political shows that Hooton fronts on you get a handle on when he is spinning snake oil, for the unbeknownst it would be hard to tell.

    Ryan is usually pretty quick to admonish Matthew when he gets a bit carried away and tells him to cool his heels, when Hooton completely loses the plot I’m pretty sure she demands a retraction, which in fairness he begrudgingly does.

    I guess years of smoking dope must be taking an effect.

    • Lanthanide 8.1

      “I guess years of smoking dope must be taking an effect.”

      He’s an alcoholic, not a pot-head.

      • Sacha 8.1.1

        And emotional outbursts are common in the months after people stop drinking. They’re normally not on the radio. Maybe some time out would be sensible?

  9. McGrath 9

    I didn’t think it was that provocative to be honest. Just came across (to me anyway) as grown-ups shouting at each other like children.

    Hooten does raise a (sort of) point that “no one cares”. Obviously people do, but a lot of non-political don’t. There is a risk of the message being lost when people “zone out” when D.P. is mentioned.

    • felix 9.1

      Who was shouting apart from Hoots?

    • Jeeves 9.2

      Yes, and it may be mere coincidence, or it may be through design, but creating a climate where the masses ‘just don’t care’ was clearly one of the pillars upon which Herr Lusk’s final solution was supported.

      It was imperative that we be mis and mal and un-informed.
      It was vital that we be conditioned towards sub-mediocre versions of truth, so that when thety wrestled democratic choice from us by stealth, they could deny it and we would believe them. We would have the neo-cons to rule over us for many a term.
      Herr Lusk, Herr Carrick Graham, Frau Odgers etc… possibly Head Scout Sabin too..

      So I ask myself, with Dubya like simplicity, about the likes of Hooten and Hager…

      “Are you part of the Dumbing down, or are you part of the Wisening Up?”
      “Are you with us, or are you against us?”

      I know where I see Hager.

  10. felix 10

    Doesn’t Matthew know that John Key is the captain of the all blacks?

    • McGrath 10.1

      He did appear on the cover of a rugby magazine with them after all.

      • Chooky 10.1.1

        i bet if you jumped on John Key he would squeak like a teddy bear…he is certainly NOT an All Black !…that really is taking spinning too far even for spin

        • Hanswurst 10.1.1.1

          i bet if you jumped on John Key he would squeak like a teddy bear

          I doubt it. I bet that, if you jumped on John Key, he would say, “Actually, at the end of the day, New Zealanders will see this for what it is, which is a smear campaign from the far left, trying to jump on this aspirational government using stolen fake information taken out of context, that… you know, and I can find another expert to say something else about the issues that matter to New Zealanders, so actually, yeah, nah, yeah. Actually.”

          • whateva next? 10.1.1.1.1

            Yes, I think the vast majority of NZers would agree with that

          • Chooky 10.1.1.1.2

            lol…not if an All Black jumped on him so hard that the air was crushed out of him…he would squeak like a teddy bear

  11. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 11

    Hager’s book defines and describes Dirty Politics as the politics of covert personal attacks made because of a person’s political beliefs.

    How was Hooten’s attack on Hager covert?

    • fisiani 11.1

      It was overt and principled.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 11.1.1

        …and how was it “personal”?

        • felix 11.1.1.1

          How was it not? Hooten tried to diminish the value of Hager’s work not by addressing the work but by attempting to denigrate the person doing it.

          It’s the very definition of an ad-hominem argument.

          • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 11.1.1.1.1

            In some circles, calling someone “not a journalist” is a compliment.

            • McFlock 11.1.1.1.1.1

              It depends entirely on whether the term refers to the bulk of today’s ignorant lot, or someone with integrity and a respect for the truth who is genuinely interested in researching and disseminating current event stories without bias.

            • lprent 11.1.1.1.1.2

              Here for instance. I’m a computer programmer. Why in the hell would I want the pissant pay and limited job opportunities of a journalist?

              More importantly where would I be able to get the job satisfaction of building something rather than just being a professional wrecker?

              If economics is the dismal science because of its jaundiced view of supply and demand and the opportunity costs of choices about where to wield resources, then what must journalism be? The dismal profession of useful muckrakers?

        • Matthew Hooton 11.1.1.2

          My comments weren’t personal at all.
          Snowdon was employed by the US Govt which he then betrayed when he stole vast amounts of sensitive information and fled, first to Hong Kong China, and then to Russia, in order to avoid prosecution for offences that arguably carry the death penalty. (The US Govt says it won’t seek the death penalty if he returns, but he doesn’t believe them.)
          While under the protection of Putin (you don’t think he would be able to stay in Russia indefinitely without Putin’s agreement?) he drip feeds bits of the information to bloggers and writers, including Nicky Hager, who share his general political outlook, which – in the context of the US and NZ (note the current polls) is far left.
          Nicky Hager then writes up that material and has it published in the NZ Herald which calls him a “journalist”. But I don’t think that writing up material that is drip-fed to you, and spinning it to make it serve your political beliefs and agenda is journalism – its PR.
          And then the strange bit – some of Nicky Hager’s friends seem to think it is an appalling attack or him (or “lies”) to say he is a left wing activist and that is what motivates him.
          I don’t see it as an attack at all – in fact I have to admire him for the work he has done pursuing his political agenda at considerable personal cost.
          I am appalled, and have said so on RNZ and in the NBR, that the police raided his house for 10 hours when he is a mere witness in a criminal investigation into the source of the material he used for his latest book.
          Is all this really so difficult to understand?
          PS. The “academic neo-con ultra” bit was obviously tongue in cheek, coming from a multiple university drop-out who was then doing some first year law papers. But because no one gets asked for context before a NH book comes out, these are the sorts of things that he writes up as having much more significance than they really have. That is an example of why I don’t regard it as journalism as I understand it.

          • Sacha 11.1.1.2.1

            Didn’t Snowden release all the information at once to Greenwald, who is working his way through it with cooperative trusted journalists like Hager?

            And yes, if you ask around the world he is exactly what an investigative journalist is. They’re not required to tell stories that make those in power happy. That would be PR. Don’t confuse his role with yours.

          • freedom 11.1.1.2.2

            http://www.icij.org/journalists
            Whether you like it or not, the fact is Mr Hooton, a long list of people far more qualified than you consider Nicky Hagar a journalist and “As of February 2015, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), an international network that has 165 investigative reporters in over 65 countries, has Hager as its only New Zealand member.” -wikipedia

          • felix 11.1.1.2.3

            Here’s the thing Matt, I don’t think it’s necessarily insulting or denigrating to call someone a far-left activist.

            But you weren’t dispassionately stating that as a fact, or even as an opinion. You were screaming it as an insult, as a vicious personal attack.

            The way the spit flew made it very clear that you think “left-wing activist” is a terrible thing to be called, and that’s why you did it. And just because you’re wrong that it’s an insult doesn’t mean you didn’t use it as an insult.

            Capiche?

            Of course in Hager’s case it’s inaccurate anyway, as the latest polling confirms. Less than half of all voters would vote for this govt, and all of the rest are to the left of it.

            What is insulting is to say he’s not a journalist. He is one of the most respected investigative journalists in NZ’s history which is precisely why high-level sources like Snowden provide him with information.

            You do realise that’s what journalists do, right Matt? They source information and put it together to tell a story.

            You’re kind of saying that he’d be more of a real journalist if instead of sourcing information he just made it all up.

            Says more about the world you work in, frankly.

            • Matthew Hooton 11.1.1.2.3.1

              I don’t think it is insulting to call someone a far-left activist. Give me a far-left activist any day over, say, Peter Dunne or National Party moderates. Far-left activists have a perception of a better world they are trying, however misguidedly in my opinion.

              • vto

                You really are a spinner. Felix’s point was entirely legit and here you are dodging and weaving trying to avoid the spittle sprayed when using the term referred to.

                Come on man, be honest. Back yourself.

                btw I reckon you will flip to the left one day…

              • felix

                “I don’t think it is insulting to call someone a far-left activist.”

                Of course it’s not. But that’s exactly how you used it.

                Did they make you listen back to the recording this time? Cos it seems like you don’t remember what you said and how you said it at all.

              • KB

                The problem with Hooton is that he doesn’t know anything that’s worthwhile knowing .
                Does he know how to build a house?…..Probably not!
                Does he Know how to nurse a sick or dying person ?…..Probably not!
                Does he know how to cook for 200 people at a time ?….Probably not!
                Does he know how to rebuild a car engine?…..Probably not!
                Does he know how to teach over 180 teenage students from 30 different nationalities a day! …… Probably not!
                Does he know how to design computer soft wear?……Probably not!
                The upshot is he knows 5/8th’s of sweet fuck all except labelling people that don’t fit the demographic of his warped view of the world.
                In other words he’s well down the list of the type of people required to make an essential and effective contribution to a successful society.
                Being a PR spinner for ‘The Right ‘ may earn money but it’s not a real job !

              • tracey

                it was the loud almost screeching way you ranted it Hooton. You haven’t replayed it have you?

            • adam 11.1.1.2.3.2

              I disagree with you Felix – Why call someone far left when the obviously are not. It has a clearly political/propaganda purpose. Are not the social democrats here insulted?

              That the rabid right get to label anything left of them, as far left – just shows how far this lot have gone into the nether, they believe their own lies. I’d suggest – that maybe they are just to use to lying, and need some love in their hearts.

            • Chooky 11.1.1.2.3.3

              +100 felix

          • Jeeves 11.1.1.2.4

            Okay Mr Journalist Academic par excellence:

            “Snowdon was employed by the US Govt”- No he wasn’t, he was working for Dell, and some outfit called Booz Hamilton or sumtin.

            “which he then betrayed ” – stop using the word betray, as though it describes a bad thing- good people betray bad people all the time. They call it ‘blowing the whistle’

            “when he stole”- Nope, wrong again- acquired/copied/shared/showed/leaked/published, maybe, but ‘stole’, no.
            THe NSA still have all the information, so no loss incurred whatsoever.

            “..and fled, … in order to avoid prosecution for offences that arguably carry the death penalty.”
            Wouldn’t you?

            While under the protection of Putin ..”.indefinitely” …-Nothing is ‘indefinite’- you know that.

            “you don’t think he would be able to stay in Russia indefinitely without Putin’s agreement?…” – that statement has about as much clout as saying “you don’t think he could be safe anywhere unless the CIA wished it so?”

            “he drip feeds bits of the information to bloggers and writers, including Nicky Hager, who share his general political outlook, which – in the context of the US and NZ (note the current polls) is far left.”

            – this is intriguing- can you quote ANYTHING by Snowden which points towards him being ‘far-left’, or is that just how you describe any action that the US government opbjects to?

            “…. I don’t think that writing up material that is drip-fed to you, and spinning it to make it serve your political beliefs and agenda is journalism – its PR.”

            – okay so obviously its not drip fed- because that’s an analogy for receiving repeated small pieces of information at a controlled pace- it was more like ‘bucket-fed, or bathtub-fed…. so why don’t you call it like it is Matt? ‘Cos spinning it to make it serve your political beliefs and agenda is [not] journalism – its PR.

            Okay- is this Journalism, or is this PR?

            • b waghorn 11.1.1.2.4.1

              “which he then betrayed ” – stop using the word betray, as though it describes a bad thing- good people betray bad people all the time. They call it ‘blowing the whistle’
              Well said Jeeves old chap although I suspect hooten knows this any way but seeing he’s on the wrong side he’d never admit it .

            • Murray Rawshark 11.1.1.2.4.2

              “Snowdon was employed by the US Govt”- No he wasn’t, he was working for Dell, and some outfit called Booz Hamilton or sumtin.

              Actually a great argument against outsourcing and privatisation from the right wing perspective. However, I’m pretty sure Booz Hamilton profits mean more to them than national security.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1.1.2.5

            Hooton’s assertion that Snowden is ‘drip-feeding’ documents is wrong, according to all sources I’ve seen. He himself claims to have dumped the lot on Greenwald et al.

            The ‘drip-feed’ effect is purely the result of the reports* being published once they’re ready.

            *cluebat, Hooton.

          • Aaron 11.1.1.2.6

            It sounds like a very long argument to try to make us forget that we’re being given factual information about how powerful people in our country have been behaving.

            Given that ‘Power Corrupts’ is a fairly universal law I see nothing terribly surprising about the truth that has been revealed to us. Trying to slur the name of the messenger doesn’t actually change these truths – namely that we’ve clearly got some decidedly dodgy characters on the political right, or that the GCSB and NSA are not acting in our best interests.

            Since you got a mention in the book it’s no surprise to see you attempting to damage Hager’s credibility, it would be a bigger surprise if you hadn’t.

            Thanks for keeping the Dirty Politics issue alive though.

          • Kevin 11.1.1.2.7

            Going to do your usual ‘Dump and Run’ Matthew?

          • Tautoko Mangō Mata 11.1.1.2.8

            “Nicky Hager then writes up that material and has it published in the NZ Herald which calls him a “journalist”. But I don’t think that writing up material that is drip-fed to you, and spinning it to make it serve your political beliefs and agenda is journalism – its PR.”

            From Unesco: their definition of Investigative Journalism
            “Investigative Journalism means the unveiling of matters that are concealed either deliberately by someone in a position of power, or accidentally, behind a chaotic mass of facts and circumstances – and the analysis and exposure of all relevant facts to the public. In this way investigative journalism crucially contributes to freedom of expression and media development, which are at the heart of UNESCO’s mandate.”
            http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communication-and-information/freedom-of-expression/investigative-journalism/

            And from Wikipedia who seem to regard Nicky Hager as an Investigative Journalist
            Category:Investigative journalists
            H
            • Nicky Hager
            • Drago Hedl
            • Murder of Lê Hoàng Hùng
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Investigative_journalists

            It seems that your world view

          • Tautoko Mangō Mata 11.1.1.2.9

            Unesco definition:

            Investigative Journalism means the unveiling of matters that are concealed either deliberately by someone in a position of power, or accidentally, behind a chaotic mass of facts and circumstances – and the analysis and exposure of all relevant facts to the public. In this way investigative journalism crucially contributes to freedom of expression and media development, which are at the heart of UNESCO’s mandate.

            http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communication-and-information/freedom-of-expression/investigative-journalism/

            Wikileaks: List of Investigative Journalists
            Category:Investigative journalists
            H
            • Nicky Hager
            • Drago Hedl
            • Murder of Lê Hoàng Hùng
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Investigative_journalists

            Matthew, I think that you have spent so much time with people who are double-dealing, being less than upfront that you cannot recognise integrity and honesty any more. We, the public, think it is unfair that we have been lied to by our leader with regard to mass surveillance. We are angry. Nicky Hager is standing up against those who want the public to be ignorant on these matters. Remember that we, the public, are paying the salaries of these spies.

            • Murray Simmonds 11.1.1.2.9.1

              In my opinion, these points, stated above by Tautoko Mango Mata, are the most useful contribution to this entire debate.

              “We, the public, think it is unfair that we have been lied to by our leader with regard to mass surveillance. We are angry. Nicky Hager is standing up against those who want the public to be ignorant on these matters. Remember that we, the public, are paying the salaries of these spies.”

              Superbly well stated, thank you!

          • Mike Smith 11.1.1.2.10

            “But I don’t think that writing up material that is drip-fed to you, and spinning it to make it serve your political beliefs and agenda is journalism – its PR.”

            Thanks Matthew for defining so clearly for us what you do.

          • Skinny 11.1.1.2.11

            I was quite fucked off with the timing of Hager’s book Dirty Politics. It killed the debate on policy, well actually it let National off the hook for presenting naff all in the way of policy. In my opinion it put a lot of people off, like it was some sort of conspiracy against dishonest John. It got worst with phony neo liberal Dot Com adding to the off put public. Worst of all was the MSM that played along saturating the public and Killing a Left win. The Greens vote suffered with a Hager smear association campaign, I even think you tried spinning that one two.

            • marty mars 11.1.1.2.11.1

              mate – labour lost the election – no one else, just them and their bullshit pretty well since helen bugged out – face up to that one and you won’t blame anything and everything and we might kick the gnats and their rats like hooton out next time.

              • Murray Rawshark

                Tautoko marty. Labour lost the election because whatever Hager showed National doing to their opponents, the electorate could see Labour doing it to themselves and their potential allies.

            • tracey 11.1.1.2.11.2

              God the truth is inconvenient when you so want to be the top liars on the block…

          • The Murphey 11.1.1.2.12

            The US dual citizenry and imperialists have betrayed humanity for an age

            Betrayal is by those you bend down for

            Q. Why are you using transference Matthew ?

  12. reason 12

    Hooten sort of reminds me of John Banks ………….. both horrible men who do have slivers of goodness………………………….. examples being that John banks does not like vivisection and Hooten disapproves of wife beating.

    The point being that even rotten bastards are rarely totally evil.

    Hooten seems to keeps drinking deeply from his dirty politics cup though …….

    Or is he just a nasty drunk? .

    • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1

      What has that got to do with anything? Hooton may or may not be all or none of those things. What counts is that he earns his crust packaging the truth, aka lying for money.

      His arguments, such as they are, come straight from the book of right wing faith and he is this at least: a self-confessed ideologue. He has a weird personal code which enables him to plot grevious bodily harm with his dirty politics crew then feign indignation at Key’s mendacity.

      In this instance, however, he’s just flat wrong. Snowden is a true patriot, as is Hager: they both hold to a code that eludes Hooton as though he is grasping water.

      • MrSmith 12.1.1

        “What counts is that he earns his crust packaging the truth, aka lying for money.”

        Hoot’s had been talking complete sense for weeks, all the while attacking the Government, but you have to wonder why? Maybe the bank account was getting a bit bare and, or, he’s basically just been flexing his muscles, showing what happens when his dish doesn’t have enough food in it.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1.1.1

          He sells his credibility to willing dupes. It does neither party any favours.

          • marty mars 12.1.1.1.1

            yep no credibility, no loyalty, no pride, no courage – he wants to sell something, anyone stupid enough to believe him?

        • rhinocrates 12.1.1.2

          Positioning. He continually brags about his “inside knowledge”. He knows what we all know about a certain “prominent” individual currently enjoying name suppression and wants to be as far away as possible when that suppression is lifted. The rat has grabbed a lifejacket, strapped on an outboard motor and is speeding away from the ship at full bore.

  13. Tiger Mountain 13

    leave out the references to the sauce commenters, if Mathew Hooton is tackling that dept. good on him, diabetics get cranky too would we criticise someone for that? I think his outbursts however are politically not necessarily substance generated.

    However Hooton’s near pathological obsession with Nicky Hager and his general “neo con ultraness” certainly need to be called. Hager is a serious writer/researcher of his generation, respected by peers, and will be viewed by history very differently from the Penguin or Whaleboil.

    • felix 13.1

      “leave out the references to the sauce commenters…”

      +1, not necessary.

    • However Hooton’s near pathological obsession with Nicky Hager

      I wouldn’t say “near”. There’s something definitely unbalanced in his trying to get Nicky Hager murdered. He needs professional help.

  14. emergency mike 14

    As others have said well enough on this thread, Matthew “tounge in cheek” Hooton’s latest shouty rant on RNZ was simply a parroting of establishment ad hom spin lines. ‘Snowden is a traitor’, ‘Hager not a journalist’, ‘stolen documents’. Yawn, how very predictable. Whistleblowers are always dealt with thus by self-impressed libertarians acting in their own ‘rational self-interest’.

    Of course those of us who watch teh blogs have been bombarded with these same lines for some time now, so sorry Matthew, if they seem to us kind of old, and you know, kicked to the curb many times over.

    And for him to come here and try to drag Hager down to his level by calling him a PR merchant… Funny stuff. Is Matthew Hooton respected worldwide as an investigate journalist speaking truth to power? Ah noes, he’s world famous in New Zealand as a slimy PR spin merchant n a shiny shirt defender of the well off and privileged i who patted Don Brash on the back for stirring up racial tensions in Orewa.

    Edward Bernays started using the term ‘public relations’ after the Nazis had given ‘propaganda’ a bad name. It pays to keep that in mind listening to anything that comes out of Hooton’s mouth.

    “Matthew Hooton is the owner of a PR company and a political commentator.” How ridiculous. Enough said really.

  15. Chauncey Gardner 15

    So if Edward Snowden was such an evil person/narcissistic who wanted to push his own agenda drip feeding material why would he say this?

    Citizen Four – Edward Snowden: http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/movie_script.php?movie=citizenfour

    “But because some of these documents are legitimately classified in ways that could cause harm to people and methods. I’m comfortable in my technical ability to protect them .I mean you could literally shoot me or torture me and I could not disclose the password, if I wanted to. I have the sophistication to do that.

    There are some journalists that I think could do that, but there are a number of them that couldn’t. But the question becomes, can an organization actually control that information in that manner without risking basically an uncontrolled disclosure?

    But I do agree with that, honestly I don’t want to be the person making the decisions on what should be public and what shouldn’t. Which is why rather than publishing these on my own, or putting them out openly, I’m running them through journalists.

    So that my bias, and my things, because clearly I have some strongly held views, are removed from that equation and the public interest is being represented in the most responsible manner.”

    He seems onto it to me, nope, not a traitor.

  16. ianmac 16

    Of course Matthew is repeating the same phrases which Key uses whenever asked for comment, “Snowden criminal…traitor…untrue information leaked/stolen…Hager false…non investigative journalist…not trusted etc etc.”
    I have heard ordinary Nat supporters use the same argument that they will ignore any stolen information and therefore what Hager writes is false. See also attitude to Dirty Politics.
    Therefore Matthew is just following Key’s lead. Pity.

  17. felix 17

    The other comment from Hoots that stuck out yesterday was when one of the others said something about people who couldn’t afford a house in Auckland.

    Hoots protested “But they’re a MINORITY!”

    As if minorities ought to be precluded from consideration.

    Cool guy. Smart too.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 17.1

      A man who peddles influence, suddenly concerned with quantity. Pfft.

    • tracey 17.2

      He doesn’t count renters, just the people who go to the auctions and lose to overseas buyers and investors…

  18. Sable 18

    I have heard Hager speak and he comes across as capable and well informed. If his detractors can show the same degree of intelligence and rigor in their counter arguments then please do so….I’m all ears….

    • Sacha 18.1

      He is one of the most strikingly clear and moral people I have ever encountered. Every time.

      • whateva next? 18.1.1

        Aye, EVERY time, no lies, no “lapses” no “off the cuff” flippant schoolboy retorts, just pure integrity

  19. Michael 19

    PR is really a form of advocacy, without any ethical constraints, such as those that apply to lawyers before the Courts (and in other work they do, too, although I’m sure everyone knows how well those constraints work in practice). AFAIK, PR practitioners actually have some sort of “Code of Conduct” although, as might be expected, it seems to be written in bullshit and not mean to be taken seriously. Perhaps Mr Hooton could enlighten us on the matter, clearly and objectively, as befits an investigative journalist and academic?

  20. Chooky 20

    Possum Hooton is a qualified MS….Master of the dark arts of Spinning….he is guaranteed to leave your head spinning

  21. Yoza 21

    There is a saying that has been attributed to a variety of people along the lines of, “News is what the powerful do not want you to know, everything else is propaganda (or trivia).”
    If we use this standard for judging the credentials of who qualifies as a journalist while accepting that a journalist is someone who delivers ‘the News’, then Nicky Hager (along with, I would argue, Gordon Campbell), is one of New Zealand’s preeminent investigative journalists.

    As it has already been noted above, Matthew Hooton is a propagandist for those powerful interests who would rather the general public did not know what they are doing. So when Matthew Hooton states Nicky Hager is not a journalist (or colludes with fellow propagandists to hand his personal details to potentially vengeful billionaires who may have been the subject of Hager’s past investigations) he is doing little more than dutifully fulfilling his function in the service of powerful vested interests.

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