web analytics

Edwards on politics and the media

Written By: - Date published: 9:36 am, June 20th, 2015 - 21 comments
Categories: accountability, Deep stuff, journalism, Media - Tags: , , ,

It won’t come as a surprise to any Standardista, but it’s good to see Brent Edwards being up front about some of the systemic problems in politics and the media.


What’s wrong with the way politics are practised in NZ?
Brent Edwards, Political Editor

Politics in this country is hard on people but soft on issues. As a result what should be serious policy debates often denigrate into political and personal points scoring. That often deters or alienates people who would, but for the “hard on people” approach to politics, have significant contribution to make to Parliament.

But while [CTU secretary] Mr Conway engaged unfailingly in reasoned debate about issues he believed important to the wellbeing of working people and others, too often in Parliament the debate is all about scoring points and attacking political opponents.

In the atmosphere which exists at 1 Bowen St the political game and how it is played becomes all important. It is exemplified in how political leaders are judged. Most leaders are not judged on the substance of what they say but how they say it. Perversely for politicians honesty and openness to new ideas are often weaknesses to be exploited by their political opponents.

Sticking to a consistent line is all important even if it is not in the long-term interests of the very voters politicians represent. And being truthful will often get politicians into difficulty. This is not to say politicians are all liars as regularly portrayed in the news media. But the political system does not encourage truthfulness.

Nor is the news media free of blame. Politics is too often reported as sport where winning or losing is the most important aspect. The tactics of the teams, read parties, are analysed but the substance of the debate often overlooked.
Reporters love to catch out politicians on a lie. Yet when they are truthful they are more often than not depicted as naive in the news media.

It is an approach to politics which does not necessarily promote reasoned debate.


It’s a must read piece, see the full article on RNZ.

21 comments on “Edwards on politics and the media ”

  1. ianmac 1

    When Brent Edwards speaks on National Radio I listen carefully. No bullshit.

    • Morrissey 1.1

      Agreed. He’s the opposite of Brian Edwards.

    • D'Esterre 1.2

      @ Ianmac: “When Brent Edwards speaks on National Radio I listen carefully.”

      As do I. Edwards is one of NatRad’s treasures.

  2. Kiwiri 2

    Grateful to Brent who maintains the high standards of broadcasting.

  3. Tracey 3

    Many of you might alreayd read this but it is new to me

    http://realmedia.press/about/

    “Real Media is a cooperative of journalists dedicated to public interest journalism and challenging mass media distortion.

    We believe the large media organisations, as they currently exist, are set up to serve the interest of a small establishment – their owners, their advertisers and the governments that they get most of their information from.

    HOW WE ARE DOING THIS

    We intend to stand up for public interest journalism in as many ways we can. As an organisation we intend to grow and adapt as we try and meet these objectives.

    We are starting with our online presence, specifically this website.”

    • ianmac 3.1

      Great plan from Real Media. British isn’t it? SCOOP here in NZ has similar aims.

      • tracey 3.1.1

        it is British. Scoop is underway in its donorship drive

        https://www.pledgeme.co.nz/projects/3711-scoop-s-sweet-sixteenth-birthday-crowd-selling-campaign

        “You are invited to help change the course of #FutureOfNews in NZ

        At a time when the institution of the Fourth Estate and public broadcasting are both under dire threat, Scoop has developed a funding model that could save the news industry. By charging a license fee for commercial use of news content, Scoop can maintain free public free access to its news – and help inform NZ’s democracy.

        NZ’s much loved, and widely used independent online news service Scoop has discovered a solution to funding the provision of public good news services in NZ. Scoop’s solution isn’t primarily driven by the interests of advertisers or massive media corporations.”

  4. Tracey 4

    What happens when people lose faith in the media? Do they become more questioning, or less? According to the Washington Post

    “The natural result of that loss of faith in the news media is for people to seek out more partisan sources of information which they can “trust” because the information being put out by those sites jibes with their particular point of view. That is, of course, is exactly what’s happened in recent years as partisans shows, news sites and radio programs have boomed even as more traditional, non-partisan media outlets have struggled. That means people are faced with information that doesn’t perfectly fit their world view less and less of the time — leading to the idea that people with whom you disagree are not simply looking at the world differently but rather are, at best, stupid, at worst, and evil.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2014/06/25/americans-dont-trust-the-media-thats-a-very-bad-thing/

  5. dukeofurl 5

    Oh no , not another restaurant critic who doesnt like food?

    Its not enough to say politics is show business for unattractive people, he wants us to consider the politicians with poor skills but ‘openess to new ideas’

    Sound like he angling for a job as a political studies academic.!

  6. Brillo 6

    He’s got it about right, it seems to me.

    Too much playing the man, not the ball. No wonder our goals are so hard to achieve.

  7. Draco T Bastard 7

    His [Conway’s] approach to economics differed markedly from that of the bank economists who tend to hog most headlines in this country.

    He believed the economy was meant to work for people, not the other way around.

    The former is as economics should be, the latter is how it is especially under RWNJ governments such as we’ve had over the last 30 years. The people are driven (yes, driven, as the attacks on beneficiaries proves) to produce ever more with the gains of that going to the rich rather than the people who actually produced it. If the gains went to those produced it then we’d probably require far less and we could have a far more diverse economy.

    • tracey 7.1

      “He believed the economy was meant to work for people, not the other way around.”

      It’s also how the priorities sit for the Green Party.

      people first
      environment first
      economy

      in that order

  8. Save NZ 8

    All true especially honesty is something to be treated as a weakness.

    Grow up NZ politics.

    Our country is being sold off to enrich already extremely wealthy individuals.

    Even some Nats must be wondering what happening.

    • Sacha 8.1

      I’m surprised we do not hear more public grumbling by genuine old-style conservatives. Not as if the current mob represent them either.

      • tc 8.1.1

        The Nats keep that under control by suppression, not allowing MSM into feisty conferences, them turfing them out.

        How many electoral selections are stacked and look how many they were able to allegedly pay off and replace last election.

        Money talks very loudly in NACT land.

  9. maui 9

    Too many people named Br… Edwards involved in political commentary if you ask me.

  10. whateva next? 10

    “Politics is too often reported as sport where winning or losing is the most important aspect.”
    Says it all, playground politics is winning and governing our country.(and John Key’s dad has got the biggest car)
    Really enjoyed reading this, as I usually enjoy reading/listening to Brent , thankyou

  11. AmaKiwi 11

    NO ONE except the PM has a say on the issues. No one can modify what Big Brother demands. GCSB. Asset sales referendum. Etc., etc. etc. He/She is our elected dictator.

    How often do majority party MPs vote to pass laws they disagree with? I’ll bet it’s more often than any of us imagine.

    If we can’t break the whipping system we have no choice except to try to topple the rider who’s leading the charge (the PM).

    Your “Representative” in Parliament does NOT represent YOU. She/He represents one person: the leader (dictator) of her/his party.

    Until we can break that we’ll just keep beating up the dictator and his/her court of slavish attendants. We have no alternative.

  12. AmaKiwi 12

    I liked the title of this story in the Guardian and wonder how it might apply to NZ:

    “We can pay £7bn to fix parliament, or much less to an arsonist. You choose.”
    (Marina Hyde)

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • WHANAU OF MĀORI BATTALION SOLDIERS REUNITED WITH MEDALS
    A ceremony has been held today in Gisborne where the unclaimed medals of 28 (Māori) Battalion C Company soldiers were presented to their families.   After the Second World War, returning service personnel needed to apply for their medals and then they would be posted out to them.  While most medals ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • SolarWinds compromise attributed to Russian state actor
    New Zealand has today added its voice to the international condemnation of the malicious compromise and exploitation of the SolarWinds Orion platform. The Minister Responsible for the Government Communications Security Bureau, Andrew Little, says that New Zealand's international partners have analysed the compromise of the SolarWinds Orion platform and attributed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Queenstown roading project given fast track approval
    An expert consenting panel has approved the Queenstown Arterials Project, which will significantly improve transport links and reduce congestion for locals and visitors in the tourism hotspot.   Environment Minister David Parker welcomed the approval for the project that will construct, operate and maintain a new urban road around Queenstown’s town ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Screen industry secures landmark project
    Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash says a landmark deal has been agreed with Amazon for The Lord of the Rings TV series, currently being filmed in New Zealand. Mr Nash says the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) secures multi-year economic and tourism benefits to New Zealand, outside the screen ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Report into review of health response to lead contamination released
    The Government welcomes the findings from a rapid review into the health system response to lead contamination in Waikouaiti’s drinking water supply. Sample results from the town’s drinking-water supply showed intermittent spikes in lead levels above the maximum acceptable value. The source of the contamination is still under investigation by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ Upgrade Programme revs up economic recovery
    Transport Minister Michael Wood today marked the start of construction on the New Zealand Upgrade Programme’s Papakura to Drury South project on Auckland’s Southern Motorway, which will create hundreds of jobs and support Auckland’s economic recovery. The SH1 Papakura to Drury South project will give more transport choices by providing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech releasing the Digital Council's report 'Towards Trustworthy and Trusted Automated D...
    CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY  E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā karanga maha o te wa, tēnā koutou, tēna koutou, tēna tātou katoa. Ki ngā mana whenua, ko Ngāi Tahu, ko Waitaha, ko Kāti Māmoe  anō nei aku mihi ki a koutou. Nōku te hōnore kia haere mai ki te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Green light for 10 minute e-bus to Auckland Airport
    Transport Minister Michael Wood today marked the completion of upgrades to State Highway 20B which will give Aucklanders quick electric bus trips to and from the airport. The State Highway 20B Early Improvements project has added new lanes in each direction between Pukaki Creek Bridge and SH20 for buses and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Review into greyhound racing announced
    The Government is putting in place a review of the work being done on animal welfare and safety in the greyhound racing industry, Grant Robertson announced today. “While Greyhound Racing NZ has reported some progress in implementing the recommendations of the Hansen Report, recent incidents show the industry still has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Road safety boosted by increased penalty for mobile use while driving
    The infringement fee for using a mobile phone while driving will increase from $80 to $150 from 30 April 2021 to encourage safer driving, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. Michael Wood said too many people are still picking up the phone while driving. “Police issued over 40,000 infringement notices ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific mental wellbeing supported across Auckland and Wellington
    Pacific people in New Zealand will be better supported with new mental health and addiction services rolling out across the Auckland and Wellington regions, says Aupito William Sio.  “One size does not fit all when it comes to supporting the mental wellbeing of our Pacific peoples. We need a by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Fresh approach proposed to Smokefree 2025
    New measures are being proposed to accelerate progress towards becoming a smokefree nation by 2025, Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced. “Smoking or exposure to second-hand smoke kills around 12 people a day in New Zealand. Recent data tells us New Zealand’s smoking rates continue to decrease, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt expands Mana Ake to provide more school-based mental wellbeing support
    More children will be able to access mental wellbeing support with the Government expansion of Mana Ake services to five new District Health Board areas, Health Minister Andrew Little says. The Health Minister made the announcement while visiting Homai School in Counties Manukau alongside Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Record Number of People Move Into Work
    The Government’s COVID-19 response has meant a record number of people moved off a Benefit and into employment in the March Quarter, with 32,880 moving into work in the first three months of 2021. “More people moved into work last quarter than any time since the Ministry of Social Development ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Significant global progress made under Christchurch Call
    A stocktake undertaken by France and New Zealand shows significant global progress under the Christchurch Call towards its goal to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online.  The findings of the report released today reinforce the importance of a multi-stakeholder approach, with countries, companies and civil society working together to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New chair of interim TAB NZ Board appointed
    Racing Minister Grant Robertson has announced he is appointing Elizabeth Dawson (Liz) as the Chair of the interim TAB NZ Board. Liz Dawson is an existing Board Director of the interim TAB NZ Board and Chair of the TAB NZ Board Selection Panel and will continue in her role as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government to phase out live exports by sea
    The Government has announced that the export of livestock by sea will cease following a transition period of up to two years, said Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “At the heart of our decision is upholding New Zealand’s reputation for high standards of animal welfare. We must stay ahead of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Workshop on Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems – opening remarks
    WORKSHOP ON LETHAL AUTONOMOUS WEAPONS SYSTEMS Wednesday 14 April 2021 MINISTER FOR DISARMAMENT AND ARMS CONTROL OPENING REMARKS Good morning, I am so pleased to be able to join you for part of this workshop, which I’m confident will help us along the path to developing New Zealand’s national policy on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Inter-prison kapa haka competition launched
    For the first time, all 18 prisons in New Zealand will be invited to participate in an inter-prison kapa haka competition, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. The 2021 Hōkai Rangi Whakataetae Kapa Haka will see groups prepare and perform kapa haka for experienced judges who visit each prison and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government takes step forward on counter terrorism laws
    The Government has introduced the Counter-Terrorism Legislation Bill, designed to boost New Zealand's ability to respond to a wider range of terrorist activities. The Bill strengthens New Zealand’s counter-terrorism legislation and ensures that the right legislative tools are available to intervene early and prevent harm. “This is the Government’s first ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Carbon neutral government a step closer
    Coal boiler replacements at a further ten schools, saving an estimated 7,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide over the next ten years Fossil fuel boiler replacements at Southern Institute of Technology and Taranaki DHB, saving nearly 14,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide over the next ten years Projects to achieve a total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Appointment of Chief Parliamentary Counsel
    Attorney-General David Parker today announced the appointment of Cassie Nicholson as Chief Parliamentary Counsel for a term of five years. The Chief Parliamentary Counsel is the principal advisor and Chief Executive of the Parliamentary Counsel Office (PCO).  She is responsible for ensuring PCO, which drafts most of New Zealand’s legislation, provides ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Emissions report shows urgent action needed
    Every part of Government will need to take urgent action to bring down emissions, the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw said today in response to the recent rise in New Zealand’s greenhouse emissions. The latest annual inventory of New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions shows that both gross and net ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ becomes first in world for climate reporting
    Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister David Clark says Aotearoa New Zealand has become the first country in the world to introduce a law that requires the financial sector to disclose the impacts of climate change on their business and explain how they will manage climate-related risks and opportunities. The Financial ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Awards celebrate the food and fibre sector employer excellence
    Exceptional employment practices in the primary industries have been celebrated at the Good Employer Awards, held this evening at Parliament. “Tonight’s awards provided the opportunity to celebrate and thank those employers in the food and fibres sector who have gone beyond business-as-usual in creating productive, safe, supportive, and healthy work ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tourism Infrastructure Fund now open
    Applications are now invited from all councils for a slice of government funding aimed at improving tourism infrastructure, especially in areas under pressure given the size of their rating bases. Tourism Minister Stuart Nash has already signalled that five South Island regions will be given priority to reflect that jobs ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Electricity Networks Association (ENA) Annual Cocktail Speech 2021
    Tēnā koutou e ngā maata waka Tenā koutou te hau kāinga ngā iwi o Te Whanganui ā TaraTēnā koutou i runga i te kaupapa o te Rā. No reira, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa.  It is a pleasure to be here tonight.  Thank you Graeme (Peters, ENA Chief ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Construction Skills Action Plan delivering early on targets
    The Construction Skills Action Plan has delivered early on its overall target of supporting an additional 4,000 people into construction-related education and employment, says Minister for Building and Construction Poto Williams. Since the Plan was launched in 2018, more than 9,300 people have taken up education or employment opportunities in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Youth Justice residence offers new pathway
    An innovative new Youth Justice residence designed in partnership with Māori will provide prevention, healing, and rehabilitation services for both young people and their whānau, Children’s Minister Kelvin Davis announced today.  Whakatakapokai is located in South Auckland and will provide care and support for up to 15 rangatahi remanded or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • The Duke of Edinburgh
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today expressed New Zealand’s sorrow at the death of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. “Our thoughts are with Her Majesty The Queen at this profoundly sad time.  On behalf of the New Zealand people and the Government, I would like to express ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Five Country Ministerial Communiqué
    We, the Home Affairs, Interior, Security and Immigration Ministers of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States of America (the ‘Five Countries’) met via video conference on 7/8 April 2021, just over a year after the outbreak of the COVID-19 global pandemic. Guided by our shared ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Inspiring creativity through cultural installations and events
    Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni has today announced the opening of the first round of Ngā Puninga Toi ā-Ahurea me ngā Kaupapa Cultural Installations and Events. “Creating jobs and helping the arts sector rebuild and recover continues to be a key part of the Government’s COVID-19 response,” Carmel ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Drug-testing law to be made permanent
    Interim legislation that is already proving to keep people safer from drugs will be made permanent, Health Minister Andrew Little says. Research by Victoria University, on behalf of the Ministry of Health, shows that the Government’s decision in December to make it legal for drug-checking services to operate at festivals ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Better rules proposed for freedom camping
    Public consultation launched on ways to improve behaviour and reduce damage Tighter rules proposed for either camping vehicles or camping locations Increased penalties proposed, such as $1,000 fines or vehicle confiscation Rental companies may be required to collect fines from campers who hire vehicles Public feedback is sought on proposals ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government backs Air New Zealand as Trans-Tasman bubble opens
    The Government is continuing to support Air New Zealand while aviation markets stabilise and the world moves towards more normal border operations. The Crown loan facility made available to Air New Zealand in March 2020 has been extended to a debt facility of up to $1.5 billion (an additional $600 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Building gifted for new community hub in Richmond red zone
    Christchurch’s Richmond suburb will soon have a new community hub, following the gifting of a red-zoned property by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) to the Richmond Community Gardens Trust. The Minister for Land Information, Damien O’Connor said that LINZ, on behalf of the Crown, will gift a Vogel Street house ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pacific languages funding reopens
      Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says the reopening of the Ministry for Pacific Peoples’ (MPP) Languages Funding in 2021 will make sure there is a future for Pacific languages. “Language is the key to the wellbeing for Pacific people. It affirms our identity as Pasifika and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • ERANZ speech April 2021
    It is a pleasure to be here tonight.  Thank you Cameron for the introduction and thank you for ERANZ for also hosting this event. Last week in fact, we had one of the largest gatherings in our sector, Downstream 2021. I have heard from my officials that the discussion on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strengthening Māori knowledge in science and innovation
    Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods has today announced the 16 projects that will together get $3.9 million through the 2021 round of Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund, further strengthening the Government’s commitment to Māori knowledge in science and innovation.  “We received 78 proposals - the highest ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers next phase of climate action
    The Government is delivering on a key election commitment to tackle climate change, by banning new low and medium temperature coal-fired boilers and partnering with the private sector to help it transition away from fossil fuels. This is the first major announcement to follow the release of the Climate Commission’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago