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PR301: Edwards and Ralston on Lhaws

Written By: - Date published: 1:50 pm, August 16th, 2010 - 22 comments
Categories: blogs, Politics, spin - Tags: , , , , ,

Brian Edwards and Bill Ralston give contrasting accounts of Michael Laws’ PR handling of his latest relationship issues. Edwards thinks Laws dealt with it well (and reduced the ‘story’ to a molehill), Ralston thinks Laws cocked-up by preempting any other media coverage and giving more away than necessary.

On Ralston’s blog there’s a nicely caustic exchange with Edwards in the comments, arguing finer points of protecting clients during a PR crisis. There’s also an enlightening To Do List of tactics, and a refutation from Laws about a few of Ralston’s assumptions. Edwards’ blog has comments from Jackie, the woman involved, that address several factual inaccuracies and explain the experience from her point of view.

When you read them together the two pieces and their respective comments provide both an education on the PR of crisis management and a demonstration of how interactive blogs add a new layer to spin – topics far more interesting than the original ‘issue’ itself.


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22 comments on “PR301: Edwards and Ralston on Lhaws”

  1. Frank Macskasy 1

    As much as I loathe Laws’ right-wing, racist views – he is entitled to his privacy like any of us. If he hasn’t committed any crimes, then the media has no right to intrude on his privacy.

    • Bored 1.1

      Well said Frank, I feel sorry that the other person got caught up in this too. Its a sad commentary on our media and what we (supposedly) like to consume when Lhaws relationships are of any interest. His preferences and proclivities ought to be his concern alone (unless they are illegal which in this case they are decidedly not). Time for the media to concern themselves with important issues like why NACT cannot, will not and never will address unemployment etc.

    • About time media personalities accepted that they are as liable to intense scrutiny as the people they subject it to…if you’re in the public eye by choice, you’re a target for any and all.

      Is that ‘crack ho’ lady the one who was on Paul Holmes doco about P, ‘Chasing the Ghost’ ?

  2. tc 2

    Yes it’s fascinating how Blogs have injected a new perspective (no matter what the angle or bias) into the previously insular and cosy lille world the likes of Edwards/Laws/Ralston used to enjoy exclusively with colleagues like garner/espiner etc.

    They can’t just play alone anymore, although listening to Laws is like listening to someone playing with themselves anyway.

  3. What the hell is going on ? How can this sleazy episode be headline news.
    No wonder the Nats can get away with so much anti worker legislation .
    The Nats are about to once again slash benefits , crush the poor solo-mum and cut conditions to workers and its just allowed to go by. The aid to Pakistan has collapsed and in fact the world is in chaos and the front page news in our main papers is the frolics and dallies of an attention seeking second class mayor. The mind boggles.

    • PK 3.2

      ***an attention seeking second class mayor***

      Actually he’s probably one of the best Mayors in the country. A number of councils are seeking to copy his gang insignia bylaw:

      “Police estimate gang membership has dropped by 15 per cent in Wanganui as a result of the council ban on patches and strong police anti-gang operations…

      Police believed the bylaw was acting as an effective deterrent and had contributed to:

      * overt gang presence being less noticeable by the general public

      * a reduction in levels of intimidation for the community

      * a reduction in confrontations between gangs.”

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10662407

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/stories/2010/08/14/4ef35eb0ddd6

      • bbfloyd 3.2.1

        shoot that man’s horse!!!

      • The Voice of Reason 3.2.2

        I note the cops aren’t claiming that crime has dropped as a result, PK. Possibly because this by-law by Laws is an unnecessary crock of shit that is not affecting the real crims one iota. There is no gang problem in Wangaz out of proportion to the rest of NZ society and the only difference the patch ban has made is to lift sales of red and blue Tshirts and hoodies. And I speak as one who grew up next to the Pepper block, went to Kiwi St Primary and still drinks in the Aramoho more often than is good for me. I’ve seen a lot of negative change in the city down the years and I know what the real problem is.

        The real problem is Richard Prebble. If that lunatic hadn’t have saved rail by closing workshops all over the country, including Eastown, there would still be employment, opportunity and a reason to stay away from crime. Real jobs, real skills. Plus a fair bit of ‘make work’ for people who nowadays are just dumped on the dole as being unemployable. The real gangsters aren’t wearing bandanna’s, they’re wearing suits. Wanganui’s real problem is the damage done by smug shits like Prebs, Douglas and Laws.

        Laws has crippled Wanganui’s council by not lifting rates to cover current and future needs, by cutting council services, by attacking anyone who has any progressive idea whatsoever. I can think of only 3 things of substance he has achieved. The walkway along the river. Regular referendums. Not standing for mayor in 2010.

        And don’t be surprised if he has a change of heart on the latter either. If he thinks he’s gained popularity as a result of this latest weirdness, he’ll be back in the running before you can say tattooed eye liner.

      • Problem is that now we can not identify the gang members.At least when you saw the patch you could go to the other side of the road. A lot more action is need to get rid of gangs than to ban patches.The democractic system has elected Law’s but it still baffles me who would vote for him.

    • Frank Macskasy 3.3

      Distracted by trivia whilst Key fiddles…

  4. Carol 4

    Yes, a diversion & a mountain out of a mole hill. I wasn’t going to comment on this diversionary issue, but I read Edwards blog on it & some of the comments.

    Edwards does make some useful comments on PR strategies. The woman in question, Jackie, makes some intelligent comments about working through some of the struggles life throws up and seems a reasonable person.

    But Edwards and Laws do seem to be slipping into an age-old, clichéd, male, romantic discourse about reformed prostitutes. These have been around at least since Mary Magdalene, and got re-invigorated by the romantic poets, and numerous popular fictions. This may not always be used in a negative way. But at its worst, it kind of romanticises women’s sexuality by collapsing the Madonna/whore types into one, and often has a way of defining women mainly by their sexuality.

  5. vto 5

    Bill Ralston, Brian Edwards and Michael Laws. sheeesh…

    They should have gone to Wairakei and hooked up to the geothermal station. So much hot air dissipating among the pine trees…

  6. tc 6

    too true vto….I have a soapbox therefore whatever spews from my mouth has merit…..radio rant being a home for such opinionated bigots dressing it up as ‘balanced opinion’ like Laws/JT and willie etc etc

  7. Tongue95 7

    Does Brian Edwards keep using the phrase ‘happy ending’ in his piece to be funny?

  8. Cnr Joe (sniping) 8

    wat a laff
    The Sperling writes on Bills Bespoke blog “The only correspondence that any of the papers could have possibly had, was a long winded email that i had sent Michael two days after ending the relationship, explaining why. It was very boring and detailed how i was not prepared for my daughters to see me in another destructive relationship.”….

    sheesh, destructive Mickey Lhaws got the boot from this ChristyCrackHo

  9. Ari 9

    Can someone remind me what policy of Laws’ would make this story even marginallly relevant to the media? I must have missed all of his super-family-monogamy-man tirades or something. ;P

    • Ron 9.1

      I’ve missed something too. Did not this story appear in the media BECAUSE Lhaws brought it to their attention?
      Agreed = it’s drivel of the first order but Lhaws brought it up for some reason.
      His FB page today was all about how he was holding hhis hhead hhigh depsite the nasty media.
      I don’t get it

      • felix 9.1.1

        Apparently the first draft of his press release simply said “I AM NOT A GAY, ALRIGHT? I KNOW YOU ALL TALK ABOUT ME BEHIND MY BACK AND I’M BLOODY SICK OF IT”.

        And yes, it was in all caps.

  10. Rex Widerstrom 10

    Ralston is, IMHO, spot on with his “To Do” list. That’sa “cut out and keep” for anyone planning a life in the public eye.

    Interesting Laws’ reaction is ascribed to paranoia. He had so many other delightful traits when I was briefly forced to work alongside him I’d forgotten that one. But on countless occasions someone (usually Sarah Neems) warned me “Michael thinks you’re saying nasty things about him, and he’s going to get you for them” or words to that effect.

    Of course I was, but no more than almost everyone else who knows him 😀

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