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Missing the point: Minister of Tourism fail

Written By: - Date published: 8:10 am, January 13th, 2013 - 102 comments
Categories: cycleway, Minister for Overseas Holidays, newspapers, The Standard, tourism - Tags: , ,

In an article this morning on Stuff, Michael Field responds to a question he attributes to “Labour Party blog, The Standard” about our Minister of Tourism spending most of his holidays in Hawaii  and fails to answer the question he cites.  Instead, Field uses the article to divert and mislead, by claiming that Helen Clark and David Lange were just as bad.  The article ends by championing Robert Muldoon as the true Kiwi, spending his holidays at a New Zealand beach, in jandals and shorts, and still being available for business.

Field treats The Standard as a person, and, instead of correctly attributing the cited question to Zetetic  in his ‘Minister for Overseas Holidays post, attributes this quote to The entire blog:

Only on the Labour Party blog, The Standard, is there much criticism of Key’s holiday – and this overlooks Clark’s holiday antics.

“Are you ‘jealous’ that Key’s off to Maui for three weeks, again?” asks the Standard.

“Or are you just a bit pissed off to learn that our minister of tourism has so far spent over 100 days overseas on holiday since becoming PM, while the average Kiwi’s had just 27 days abroad and tourism here is in crisis?”

Field fails to take up the point Zetetic makes about Key’s lack of promotion of New Zealand tourism in his choice of holidays.  He fails to mention that, alone among the prime ministers mentioned, Key is the Minister of Tourism while PM.  It fails to mention Clark was Minister of Arts, Culture and Heritage. Staying off the point, Field mentions Helen Clark’s very active holidays in Norway during New Zealand’s summer holiday period, but fails to mention all the holidays she took in New Zealand.

A quick google search to find support my memory of Clark’s tramping holidays in the South Island threw up some interesting links.  There’s this item on the NZ Travel Planner site, reporting on Clark’s prominent role TV travel programme, aired in the US, that follows her tour of New Zealand adventure and active tourist spots.  It is a tour given credibility by Clark’s inside knowledge gained from holidays she had spent actively engaging with New Zealand’s countryside:

 Travel Channel’s Chief Correspondent Peter Greenberg says “I’ve been coming to New Zealand for more than 28 years, and as much of a seasoned traveller I think I might be, I was in for a rather pleasant surprise. The Prime Minister took me to places I didn’t know existed, and then we experienced these locations in a way that was at times physically challenging, but always exhilarating. She has an incredible knowledge of her country and its people. She was not just my very special tour guide, but perhaps New Zealand’s best goodwill ambassador.”

Included in the programme the Prime Minister visits a bungy jumping site, ice climbs the southern alps, rides jet boats on the Shotover River, treks through Fiordland and abseils 400 feet in the Waitomo Caves.  Each of the sites she visits and all of her activities are accessible to travellers.

I also came across this June 2008 article by Audrey Young, accompanied by a photo of Clark skiing in the Southern Alps. Young begins the article:

No matter the season in New Zealand, Prime Minister Helen Clark likes to head for the hills–big white ones, with a good layer of snow. During the country’s summer (December through February), Clark, 58, spends two weeks in Scandinavia to indulge her love of cross-country skiing, which she took up at the age of 41. The Rondane National Park area in Norway is a favorite destination. But at this time of year–winter in the Southern Hemisphere–Clark travels to the mountainous regions of South Island when Parliament is in recess.

And I also found this 2008 article about a member of Clark’s South Island alpine party needing dying:

A mountain guide in Prime Minister Helen Clark’s alpine party has died near Lake Tekapo in the central South Island today.

Police tonight confirmed the dead man was Gottlieb Otto Braun-Elwert, aged 59.

Miss Clark is understood to have been involved in resuscitation efforts on him late this afternoon.

So what’s John Key, Minister of Tourism,  done lately for New Zealand tourism?  And how’s that cycleway going, John?  Have you done the active thing and taken a holiday along it to promote local tourism?

NB: Mr Field, this is not a Labour Party blog, I am not a Labour Party member, and in recent times have party voted Green Party.

102 comments on “Missing the point: Minister of Tourism fail”

  1. Some within caucus would have kittens at the suggestion that the Standard is a Labour Party blog …

    • karol 1.1

      Maybe Stuff have had second thoughts about that? Interestingly, when I was writing the post, the article was headlined at the top of the front page on Stuff. Now it seems to have totally disappeared from view, though the link to it still works.

      I’ve just checked the Sunday Star Times on Press Display. The article is on page 7 of the hard copy.

      • Lanthanide 1.1.1

        Sometimes articles on stuff very rapidly fall off the top headlines, usually they’re the opinion type pieces like the one you’re talking about. I wouldn’t read anything in particular into it.

    • Mary 1.2

      …and some who despise what the current Labour party stands for, too. Field must’ve got his wires crossed after seeing some of Shearer’s posts. The state of Redalert probably doesn’t help, either. When’s Labour going to close that down? It really is a blot on the landscape.

  2. bad12 2

    While i agree whole-heartedly with all the points made in this post and other previous posts on the subject of where the Slippery little Shster we have as our Prime Ministers does the holiday thing i seriously CRINGE at the thought of being subjected to nightly doses of ”the Prime Minister Dances Like a Spastic (again)” on the 6 o’clock news during the holiday period,

    The likes of Rob Muldoon and Helen Clark could afford to be seen by the average Kiwi out and about on holiday,simply because they were the same Rob Muldoon and Helen Clark that we all seen regularly on the TV doing the Prime Minister thing,

    Slippery tho, can’t afford to let the carefully crafted mask of the ‘Kiwi bloke’ slip for just one instant, just behind the mask that millions of dollars has been spent upon creating via the services of His media team is a hissing,spitting, cynically manipulating puppeteer who makes the Simpson’s, Montgomery Burns, look slightly saintly in comparison…

  3. Te Reo Putake 3

    A rather strange article all round, Karol. Michael Field is not normally employed to write filler material like this. He is a specialist in Pacific politics, not island holidays. Leaving aside the ignorance about The Standard, the real flaw was his failure to establish the claim that hitting the beach is a Prime Ministerial summer tradition. By only referencing 4 PMs, two of them from the eighties, and ignoring the last PM’s penchant for powdered snow, he really does miss the point.

    But, I guess, he was asked to knock off 500 words on politicians on the beach to fill a gap in the paper and this was the indifferent result.

    • Rogue Trooper 3.1

      locally, the international tourism sector has been struggling for the last couple of years. In contrast to the dumping on “freedom campers” in the media (some validity re toileting habits) the local PTB have been publicly encouraging all types of campers to spend time and money in the area, and endeavouring to break down stereo-types and further more, in this particular province anyway, the challenge of racial stereotyping and prejudice continues for Asians from both the sub-continent, China and the wider S.E.A.

  4. tc 4

    Pretty standard stuff from the MSM, govt good, opposition bad, don’t let facts get in way of the spin.

    Get facts wrong, stay off the point, divert, mislead all in a days work for these hacks. If surgeons did similar work they’d end up having a visit by the coroner.

    Bad nails it with the comment that if he did stick around the facade would be shattered about the ‘good kiwi bloke’ image, it’s not like he’s got nowhere to go with his Omaha palace.

    • David H 4.1

      Maybe if we are really lucky, the Volcano will blow it’s top and give the proverbial 2 fingers to the B ullshit artist Key, as it demolishes his American Escape.

  5. QoT 5

    I honestly cannot attribute sincere motives to anyone who’s misrepresented Zet’s post in the way Michael Field has. I mean, it’s pretty damn clear that Zetetic is referring to the Minister for Tourism taking overseas holidays while tourism here is in a crisis.

    Every single person who’s jumped up to say “You’re just jealous of John Key’s success!!!!” is a derailing tr*ll, pure and simple.

    Many thanks to you, karol, for doing the hard yards on refuting that BS about Helen Clark’s holidays, also.

  6. Sanctuary 6

    More to the point, why has Fairfax/SST felt it necessary to write a piece taking to task John Key’s critics in the blogsphere? It is a boringly blatant piece of soft pro-Key propaganda from the political/media establishment.

  7. “ND: Mr Field, this is not a Labour Party blog, I am not a Labour Party member”

    I’m not a member of any political party, and isn’t the Labour blog called Dead Alert?

    • Mary 7.1

      Redalert’s become such a desolate place. It’d be interesting to know exactly how that’s happened. They just didn’t seem to want proper debate. Guess you can only ban so many people before there’s nobody left. Looks like even their mascot Spud’s gone.

      • David H 7.1.1

        They have died because if you say anything they don’t like then they ban you, and remove the comment so nothing makes sense. Also there only seems to be one or two politicians are allowed (or want ) to post.

        • Jim Nald 7.1.1.1

          Quite sad, really.
          Anyway, I’d rather stick to being here on TS with stronger assurance that confidentiality, privacy and security will be respected.

    • karol 7.2

      Ah, The Allen, you copied a little typo from my post – [NB] – fixed.

  8. VindowViper 8

    All that’s happening here is that Michael Field is being a typically sloppy journo (in silly season mode).

    Poor dears .. they’re just not used to the kind of scrutiny they’re subject to in the the online world.

    • tc 8.1

      No it’s not sloppy it’s deliberately untruthful and misleading. Expecting the uninformed readers to take it as valid.

      He’s been around long enough to know TS isn’t a labour party blog and a casual glance would show him clearly this is far from a Labour cheer squad effort.

      A half decent Sub editor would and should of picked up the factual inaccuracy, that’s if they have any allowed to do that sort of thing.

  9. The point is, if Helen Clarke was still PM, and people complained about her overseas holidays, you would all support her.

    How is not hypocritical?

    • One Tāne Huna 9.1

      Do you need a pre-frontal lobotomy to become a wingnut?

      How did you miss the fact that the position being discussed is Minister of Tourism?

      I wouldn’t bother supporting HC on this one: looks like the Travel Channel’s Chief Correspondent refuted any possible criticism on his own.

      Perhaps you missed that too.

      • McFlock 9.1.1

        Apparently goldfish have quite good memories. Which leaves me short of a reasonable comparison.

    • QoT 9.2

      And like magic, Brett Dale appears to prove my comment at #5 correct.

      • Brett Dale 9.2.1

        Again, its hypocritical to complain about one PM’s holiday, and not another.

        • McFlock 9.2.1.1

          you’re sweet.

        • QoT 9.2.1.2

          Yes Brett, that’s exactly what’s going on here. You have fully grasped the discussion taking place, and you’re making completely relevant points.

        • Richard 9.2.1.3

          As mentioned above, it’s more about him being Minister of Tourism and not lowering himself to have an NZ holiday just once in a while. There is that small issue of domestic tourism that could do with a boost at the moment.
          As a tourism operator, it was good to see Helen Clark climbing NZ mountains and skiing in NZ – didn’t she front a Discovery channel program about NZ’s beautiful wild places?
          And she wasn’t even Minister of Tourism
          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=1293547
          Can’t see how John Key strutting around on Hawaian beaches with an entourage of security guards does anything for out tourism industry.

          • Populuxe1 9.2.1.3.1

            Hmmm. While I don’t have a poll to hand on how many New Zealanders decide where to have a holiday based on the PM’s movements, I’m willing to bet it’s not very high.

    • David H 9.3

      Oh god another Shit for Brains troll. Hey SFB we are talking about Dunnokeyo as Minister of TOURISM. FFS.

  10. Te Reo Putake 10

    Poor Brett, bravely trying to communicate through what appears to be a crippling hangover. Hang in there, big fulla, only two minutes to beer o’clock and you can start the process all over again.

  11. just saying 11

    Does anyone know if the Minister for Tourism has taken a holiday within NZ (not to be confused with attending family gatherings) since he has been in the role, or even since he came to stay in NZ?

    The fact is, and everybody knows it, Key goes home for his holidays, as those stationed abroad very often do. Helen Clark comes home regularly.

  12. woodpecker 12

    On a positive note, the more people that find your excellent posts Karol, the better. Which is probably the reason they took it down so fast.

    • karol 12.1

      Actually, during the day, the Stuff article was back on the front page as a featured article. So far it has just 14 replies, most not really picking up the whole diversionary thing.

  13. Frank 13

    He weekends in Omaha, just to show he is down do earth like Muldoon was.

    • just saying 13.1

      No, holiday. Weekending closer to home just means most of the weekend isn’t taken up travelling.

  14. Joe Bloggs 14

    Super-storm-cell meet teacup.

    Talk of tourism in New Zealand being in crisis is a red herring. Year-on-year international tourist numbers for visits to NZ up by 5% and spend is up by nearly 3%, despite the NZ dollar strengthening against some currencies by up to 20%

    Visitor numbers have been growing steadily since 2001 (excepting 2008 and 2009) and travel websites are reporting significant growth in inquiries searches and bookings for New Zealand after the release of The Hobbit.

    Local retailers are reporting their busiest season in four years. And employment in the industry is seasonal, employment drops in the winter and rises in the summer.

    And as for where the Minister of Tourism spends his holidays, New Zealand has had a succession of ministers who holiday locally and overseas. So what? Big deal!

    • infused 14.1

      Indeed. Finally saw the hobbit last night. Was blown away at the promotion of New Zealand. You then have a trailer on all DVD of NZ.

      Yeah John Key sucks.

      • kiwicommie 14.1.1

        The movie sucks, most US media agree. So much for that. 😉

        • Brett Dale 14.1.1.1

          Actually most were positive.

          • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1.1

            Metacritic 58% rating, “mixed or average reviews” in the media. Ordinary viewers liked it much more though.

            http://www.metacritic.com/movie/the-hobbit-an-unexpected-journey

            • Brett Dale 14.1.1.1.1.1

              metacritic?

              What did jeeves say?

            • Brett Dale 14.1.1.1.1.2

              IMDB 83%
              RT 65%

            • Populuxe1 14.1.1.1.1.3

              It just made a billion dollars.

              • Te Reo Putake

                No it didn’t, Pop. I thought you righties knew the difference between gross and nett?

                The Hobbit’s first part has flopped artistically and the 2nd and 3rd parts are going to have significantly lower box office takes because of the boredom factor. Nobody has the guts to say to Jackson that it’s a one film book at best. And a 90 minute film at that. But then, most of Jackson’s recent works have been bum numbingly boring, because Jackson has no self control and nobody around him has the balls to suggest some swingeing editing.

                • Populuxe1

                  Just because I disagree with hypocrisy and am not a screaming doctrinaire ideologue does not makes me a righty. However your insistence that I am does make you a simplistic buffoon.

                  • Te Reo Putake

                    So nothing constructive to say, Pop? That’s the problem with you righties; the inability to communicate beyond issuing orders.

                    • Populuxe1

                      If your ludicrous trolling is somehow constructive, that would be a different matter. I support the welfare state, public institutions, greater social liberalism and the rights of workers over corporate greed. I criticise what I regard as hypocrisy and other forms of bullshit wherever I see it, regardless of the politics of the person saying it, because I believe in integrity and don’t see any value in mindless sycophancy. Do please tell me how any of this makes me a “rightie” – or are you really that pompous?

                • felixviper

                  I think that’s probably very true, a victim of his own success in a sense. Although even in his earlier films he had a habit of dragging out relatively minor aspects of stories well beyond the point of interest.

                  I think he probably cops a bit too much criticism for the LOTR films though. They may not be artistic masterpieces by everyone’s measure but for the most part they tell a good story in a fairly compelling way and fill in a lazy rainy Sunday afternoon from time to time.

                  I will say though that I couldn’t agree more with this regarding the ending: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKbyWSwd7hk (NSFW unless you have headphones on)

        • David H 14.1.1.2

          I have not watched a Peter Jackson movie, since I saw bad Taste. And 2.5 – 3 hours to watch a small part of a book No thanks. And a review I saw, said that the 3 hour movie only dealt with the first 129 pages of the book. what a way to make money at the expense of the poor kiwi worker.

      • Rich 14.1.2

        I don’t see how a movie that isn’t about here and is mostly CGI acts as an advert for NZ. Who stays and watches the end-credits to see where a film was shot? Or goes running off to Mongolia coz they just saw Conan the Librarian and the landscape looked really pretty?

    • MrSmith 14.2

      Well Joe taking to people in the industry numbers have been well down over the last few years, maybe someone’s cooking the books.

    • MrSmith 14.3

      Joe: I don’t think you’re even involved in the tourism industry, if you were you would know the demographic has changed, now we have a lot more visitors from asia, with short arms and deep pockets that like to sit on their hands.

  15. Blue 15

    The article appears to be nothing more than a rambling collection of anecdotes organised around the theme of ‘PM’s holidays’.

    It’s just filler for the fish and chip wrapper. I highly doubt Field was trying to raise any serious questions. Kiwi journos rarely do, and certainly not during the ‘dead’ news period in summer.

  16. weka 16

    I would have thought it was grounds for complaint, calling The Standard a Labour Party blog. Stuff should print a correction.

    • kiwicommie 16.1

      Anything that speaks the truth is a ‘enemy of the state’. See no truth, hear no truth and write no truth is the reality of MSM in NZ. First they said The Standard undermines the Labour party, now they say that The Standard is a puppet of the Labour Party. Hmmm…what conspiracy BS are they spinning this time?

    • Mary 16.2

      If The Standard were a person it’d be grounds for defamation.

    • Agree with Weka

      I don’t consider it a “mistake” to refer to The Standard as Labour’s blogsite. This is out and out misinformation and bad form on the part of the writer.

      Thanks Karol for pointing out yet another example of propaganda for the status quo. It appears to me that neo-liberal interests are really ramping it up, which is kinda good; means they are threatened.

      • Anne 16.3.1

        Agree with Weka

        I don’t consider it a “mistake” to refer to The Standard as Labour’s blogsite. This is out and out misinformation and bad form on the part of the writer.

        It’s mischief-making and I think Lynn should write a formal response and send it to them.

          • weka 16.3.1.1.1

            Well that would be up to Lynn and the others in charge, but I agree that the journalist and Stuff need a slap for being so bloody useless at their job.

            • karol 16.3.1.1.1.1

              Yes, on the inadequacy of the article, weka.

              I’ve been reading the comments under the article. They are all following the main line promoted by the article, debating whether our PMs should holiday at home or abroad. No-one has picked up on Zetetic’s point about Key being Minister of Tourism and our lagging tourist industry – and that point is quoted within the article, but buried among the other fluffy beach stuff.

              • Populuxe1

                Probably because it’s rather a non-point – the great unwashed New Zealand public doesn’t breathlessly monitor PM Dickhead’s holiday arrangements in order to plot their own. If they did, they might actually care. Clearly they don’t. Endlessly harping on about it just makes us look impotent and bitter. Can we please move on to genuine issues?

                • @Populuxe1

                  Your comment is true if you consider that image and effectiveness are not important aspects of both a PM and a Minister of Tourism

                  • Populuxe1

                    Effectiveness is far more important, and “image” is a subjective thing – Key’s image as regards his public life should be open to scrutiny and public criticism, but the day we invade a family’s privacy (other than in a criminal investigation) looking for things to pick at just because we don’t like someone – not because they’re actually doing anything particularly wrong – is a very sad day for New Zealand society.

                    • Conversely effectiveness could be seen to be a subjective thing, depending on who is benefitting: to some higher earners having a PM who gives tax cuts to them could be consider very effective; those on low wages whom are paying higher taxes might have something else to say.

                      The image of a PM who can afford to have a holiday home in Hawai’i may strike some as an image of success, to others it may appear inappropriate given certain degenerating conditions at “home”.

                      I consider our current Government succeeding solely through image, not effectiveness, and so my personal view is you are underestimating the role of image in politics.

                      Anyone pointing where our Government is failing (not hard) seems pertinent to someone, such as myself who is critical or should I say despairing as to the effectiveness of our current Government.

                      As for private criticism, well yes, I am inclined to agree, and perhaps where one holidays is heading into personal territory, although I still view Karol’s point as pertinent for the above reasons. Being a public figure does come with a few costs and having one’s life and behaviour scrutinized is one of them, I’m sure Mr Key will get over this particular one…(Perhaps whilst sipping tequila on a beach in Hawai’i?)

                    • Populuxe1

                      I don’t underestimate the importance of image in politics, Blue Leopard, but I refuse to stoop to their level and I don’t think the opposition should either.

                    • To point out weaknesses in the Government’s approach is not “stooping to their level”, as for image, if this is what you are referring to, I also do not like politics emphasizing image, unfortunately people are inflluenced by image especially those who do not follow politics closely (which I guess to be most people), therefore to ignore this aspect or not “indulge” in it is simply ignoring an important factor influencing people’s opinions.

                      A common and old form of image creation is the way men wear suits, in the 21st century things are becoming more sophisticated than that and just because it isn’t the way I wish things to be is not a good enough reason to ignore it’s effects.

  17. The Hobbit was a flop, it only got one or two star ratings. NZ tourism fails to understand the European and North American market, or provide incentives. The high dollar is hurting tourism, unless living expenses decline and Air NZ provides travel vouchers as British Airways does, then tourism will continue to get hit.

    • Brett Dale 17.1

      $825 (USA Dollars) Million worldwide, a Flop?????

      Boy oh boy.

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.1

        Yeah and like chumps we subsidised those corporate profits with NZ tax payer dollars.

    • Joe Bloggs 17.2

      More smoke and mirrors

      The Hobbit may not rate in the eyes of a few critics but it’s still broken box office records locally and internationally

      Is a high NZ dollar hurting tourism?? Nup – despite the NZ dollar rising by up to 20% against other currencies, international tourists coming to New Zealand spent nearly 3% in New Zealand dollars more in 2012 than they did in 2011 – simple maths… that’s 23% more of their own money spent here.

      And as for not understanding the European and North American markets that’s a moot point – but the industry DOES understand the Asian market – which is a heck of a lot closer and more valuable to the local industry… Chinese tourist visits were up by almost 40% in the year ended Sep 2012 and China’s now our third largest tourism market.
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/7841412/Chinese-tourists-breathe-fire-into-market

      • karol 17.2.1

        That was a November article, Joe, and it isn’t a whole hearted endorsement for the state of NZ tourism. The artoicle says:

        Despite the boost from Chinese tourists, total visitor numbers in September alone fell a seasonally-adjusted 3.3 per cent from a strong result in August. There was a sharp drop in Japanese visitors, and a small dip in arrivals from the key Australian market.

        Also, Key has focused on promoting NZ to the US via the Hobbit and 10% Middle-earth. John Key’s fan-boy fixation on the US and its celebrity culture is not helping NZ generally.

        Meanwhile an article on Stuff this morning about the economic challenges for the Key government in 2013, by Rod Oram, is less than enthusiastic about the state of the NZ tourist industry.

        Other major areas of the economy have their own strategic shortcomings too. For example, over the past six years tourism has lost a lot of its long-staying, high-spending visitors. It has only partially offset the decline with more short-stay, lower spending visitors from China and Australia.

        • Populuxe1 17.2.1.1

          “That was a November article, Joe, and it isn’t a whole hearted endorsement for the state of NZ tourism.”

          Oooh – less than two whole months ago! It doesn’t exactly scream world shattering crisis either.

          “Also, Key has focused on promoting NZ to the US via the Hobbit and 10% Middle-earth. John Key’s fan-boy fixation on the US and its celebrity culture is not helping NZ generally.”

          Citations and stats please.

          And “short-stay, lower spending visitors from China and Australia” tend to be cyclical based on their economies.

          • karol 17.2.1.1.1

            Pop, I’ve posted several times on the issue of Key’s wrong-headed focus on marketing tourism to the US, with him putting a strong focus on the hobbit/100% Middle earth branding. Each post has a number of links, including links to government stats on tourism, over time, and across several contributing countries.

            These are a couple of my posts: here, and here. I’m not going to repeat what I said there, along with the links, in every post I make related to that topic.

            And if Key’s role in promoting tourism has no influence, as you claim, why is he spending some much of his time and energy on his (albeit skewed and wrongly targetted) promotion of tourism.

            • Populuxe1 17.2.1.1.1.1

              Karol, your view that targeting the US seems to me entirely subjective, offering very little evidence why targeting the US tourism market is wrong-headed (ie, no facts or numbers). Also your narrative is fairly obviously spun- for example, while Chinese tourists may spend more, it’s mostly back into Chinese-owned tourism businesses, whereas the rich Americans coming off cruise ships actually inject a lot of capital into port communities. If anything you just seem to be working from a “hate everything American” bias all to common among commentors in this site.

              “And if Key’s role in promoting tourism has no influence, as you claim, why is he spending some much of his time and energy on his (albeit skewed and wrongly targetted) promotion of tourism.”

              That’s an entirely separate issue from his personal family holidays. One is his job and the other is his private life and we’re a pathetic bunch if we can’t see the difference.

              • karol

                Pop, did you follow up the links in my earlier posts? Do I need to go and retrieve the data for you?

                • Populuxe1

                  Yes I followed up your links – that doesn’t magically transform them from opinions peppered with subjective observations into something approaching fact. Yes Key shilled us out to Hollywood, and yes 100% Pure isn’t a meaningful phrase, but you provide absolutely no definitive evidence that the Hobbit movies have not benefited our tourist market, or that the loss of a handful of European freedom campers disillusioned by the not so clean green realities of our country, or indeed that PM Dipshit was wrong to target the US market. In fact, much like Key himself, it’s all hat and no cattle.

                  • karol

                    Pop, the stats NZ stuff shows that the US is not our biggest market for tourism, which is where the Hobbit promotion was largely targeted. The UK and Aussie are bigger markets, and S E Asian tourists bigger spenders.

                    The 100% Pure deal deal gave Warners major control over how NZ is marketed via the Hobbit.

                    The survey by Stats NZ, mentioned here and on the Stats NZ site shows that in 2004, only 7% of visitors mentioned Lord of the Rings as a reason for visiting since NZ.

                    Since then, there are many reasons why US-ians will be less likely to be motivated to visit NZ by the Hobbit movies.

                    Also the figures generally show a decline of the tourism industry in NZ, of which a couple of movies don’t make a lasting difference.

                    There was also other stuff about how, when Key last did a promotion visit for NZ tourism, pitching the filming of Hollywood product in NZ, Key was focusing more on TV production. This is because, TV series have an impact on people’s awareness for longer than a movie or two.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Do I really have to explain that if you have smaller, potentially lucrative markets, you work to expand them?
                      Must I point out that just because US tourists didn’t mention Lord of the Rings, that doesn’t mean it didn’t have a synergistic, cumulative, tangential, or unconscious influence and that the 2004 Oscars alone had 43.56 million TV viewers? That’s basic marketing.
                      When you say that a couple of movies don’t make a lasting difference, what actual evidence do you base that on or are you just making things up to suit your prejudices. Data =/= plural of anecdote.
                      And if Key was focusing on TV production and that is a good thing, isn’t he then doing his job properly?

                    • karol

                      Pop, having accused me of not citing evidence about NZ’s lagging tourist industry, you are now making things up, with no evidence to support your imaginings – as you do with this:

                      Must I point out that just because US tourists didn’t mention Lord of the Rings, that doesn’t mean it didn’t have a synergistic, cumulative, tangential, or unconscious influence and that the 2004 Oscars alone had 43.56 million TV viewers? That’s basic marketing.

                      The stats do show a flagging industry, although, it’s still a significant earner for NZ. And there is evidence Key was looking more closely at Hollywood TV production in NZ because there looked like the filming of Hollywood movies here would flag in the next couple of years. It is a very competitive industry, and the reports of Key’s trip to Hollywood spell out the problems of getting more Hollywood movies made here.

                      With Key forced to wait until after the next election for another film production approaching the scale of Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit, he is falling back on television.

                      And this report on Key’s Hollywood trip, put the focus on the importance for the NZ film and TV industry to film such productions here, as much as for any boost for tourism.

                      Prime Minister John Key needs the film industry to succeed in New Zealand – not only to create much-needed jobs, but to justify a $30 million payout to one of the world’s biggest entertainment companies….

                      Carr said television productions, particularly compelling dramas such as Mad Men and Game of Thrones, were the future for the local industry.

                      Ironically, Game of Thrones is being filmed now in Northern Ireland.

                      “People all round the world are very keen to have that kind of business because feature films are like the icing on the cake, but television is the sustaining bread,” she says.

                      I have presented some of the evidence that lead to my conclusions, you have just ignored anything that doesn’t support your pre-judgements, and made other things up.

                    • Populuxe1

                      No Karol, I just expect a bit more than quoting other people’s opinion pieces (that would be the stuff I’m ignoring, largely because it’s subjective, and, well, opinion, and if the PM is pursuing tv production because movies aren’t showing results, I would contend that it suggests he’s doing is job.

                    • karol

                      *sigh* Pop, when you start using some evidence to support your views maybe I’ll take some notice. I have not just used opinion pieces: I’ve used official stats, I’ve used quotes in articles by key people in the tourist sector. The tourism gains from movie production are limited and relatively short term. Key’s shift to US TV series, is both evidence of the limitations of Hollywood movie production in NZ, and his skewEd focus on the US.

                      If Key was fully doing his job as tourist minister, he’d be trying to promote co-productions with South East Asian countries more (something people in the industry have been working on for a while) , and with Aussie. You use nothing but your mantra of me being subjective. Meanwhile, all you do is spout your own views, unsupported by any evidence.

                      Key is stuck in his relations with the US. Official stats show the tourist industry is flagging, and that the US is not our main source of tourists.

                      When you do something more than that (something more than John Key is above criticism and there is no problem with the tourist industry), I’ll continue the discussion.

      • MrSmith 17.2.2

        “Is a high NZ dollar hurting tourism?? Nup”

        Bullshit Joe! unless everyone likes paying more for less.

        “despite the NZ dollar rising by up to 20% against other currencies, international tourists coming to New Zealand spent nearly 3% in New Zealand dollars more in 2012 than they did in 2011 – simple maths… that’s 23% more of their own money spent here.”

        What a load of crap Joe,

        “simple maths… that’s 23% more of their own money spent here.”

        Joe sorry to burst your bubble, but according to you their money was worth 20% less due to our high dollar, so they really only spent 3% more according to your figures! which you probably pulled out of your ass anyway.

        • Joe Bloggs 17.2.2.1

          no bubbles burst there – if our dollar has risen by up to 20% against the US for example, then it costs 20% more in greenbacks to buy the same kiwi dollar.

          But wait there’s more.

          International tourist spending in NZ dollars has actually increased by close on 3% so not only does it cost them 20% more in their own currency but they’re actually shelling out a few extra bucks on top…

          evidently simple math ain’t your forte Mr Smith

          • McFlock 17.2.2.1.1

            Source?

            Because MED think you’re a bit off. And that seems to be largely because of a growing Chinese market, and our exchange rate with the Yuan isn’t increasing quite so much.

            Not that your math particularly adds up, anyway.

          • MrSmith 17.2.2.1.2

            I wasn’t going to add anything more after reading McFlock’s reply apart from “I have a shovel for sale if you break the one your using”.

            But I have a few spare moments so what the hell.

            “if our dollar has risen by up to 20% against the US for example, then it costs 20% more in greenbacks to buy the same kiwi dollar.”

            That’s right Joe now your starting to get it.

            People buying NZ dollars with US dollars are now paying 20% more for them, but Joe when they go to spend their NZ dollar in NZ do they get 20% more goods or service for that dollar? No they don’t Joe!

            In-fact if you factor is inflation (New Zealand Inflation Rate averages 4.9 Percent over the last century, Yes inflation is running currently at .08 %, but over the last 5 years it has been running at 3.95 per cent per annum) they will actually need to spend more for the same goods and services, with the money they paid 20% more for.

            Your saying that this isn’t having any affect on tourism, well sorry Joe if my 5 week trip was just shortened to 4 weeks because of the high NZ dollar and when I arrived due to inflation everything had gone up in price so I then needed more spending money, I would be thinking about looking for another place to holiday.

            What we are seeing is a huge shift is visitor nationalities and this is causing a lot of disruption in the tourist industry, there are winners and losers of-course, but basically Chinese/Asin tourists don’t want to do the same things as say European or US tourists, so yes the industry will have to adapt and yes the industry should have seen this coming, you won’t hear me crying to much about it, but some will argue that if we had a proactive government we could have foreseen a lot of this and then helped the industry prepare and adapt for the shift, mitigating a lot the disruption and pain, not to mention the huge costs and energy associated with changing the services the industry provides.

            But of-course thats not how this government works is it, they would see it as an opportunity for there mates to make more money, so leaving it all to the market.

  18. newsense 18

    journalists. meh.

    aren’t they supposed to have professional standards and that kind of thing?

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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago

  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago