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The people respond to the Herald Editorial on Donghua Liu

Written By: - Date published: 11:53 am, June 27th, 2014 - 65 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, john key, labour, Media, national, newspapers, same old national - Tags:

Lprent has posted already on the Herald editorial this morning.   Whoever wrote the editorial has tried to downplay the clusterfuck that is the Herald handling of the Donghua Liu issue. The comments to the editorial on the NZ Herald website should be read to believe.  There are obviously some really annoyed people out there and many people’s sense of fairness has been upset.

Some of the more interesting comments are set out below.  One from Mogwai

“Seeking the truth” are you serious? I don’t even vote Labour but on this matter NZH columnists [with the exception of O’Sullivan] have simply distorted the truth and have clearly been working to a coordinated agenda to raise the question “can he be trusted”?

All this while you have done little to hold the pathologically dishonest Key to account. And now we get the Key biography just in time for the election by, wait for it… a former NZH journalist!

Meanwhile even more absurdly you have Audrey Young running shotgun for the photo ops with Obama and writing fawning pump pieces to position trader John as some sort of statesman! All this while John Kerry announced our foreign policy on Iraq which over 2 days went from ‘probably not’ to ‘maybe’ to ‘yes we are with you’! What about some scrutiny of there matters?

Nice try with your column too in trying to say oh we just upset people across the spectrum at different times. This is rubbish – your comments sections have been overwhelmed for months at least with 70-90% of comments calling your writers out on exactly the same issues.

From Marky

I believe that people’s issues are not with the facts, but with the spin, misinformation and inflammatory headlines. Unfortunately your paper acts like a chap rag now days.

From Viv

It would be pertinent to the public interest IF you got the facts correct. To keep on repeating that David Cunliffe advocated for Lui in regards to his residency application, and sent them a ‘hurry-up’, is just plain wrong.

He simply asked for an approximate time frame, he did NOT say HURRY UP at all yet you persist in putting words into his mouth, and as many people have pointed out, it is a job that all MPs do at some time or another. As for harping on and on about a donation to a rowing club, whether or not an MPs daughter is a member or not is of no significance whatsoever.

It is absolutely nothing to do with the 2014 election, neither is anything that may or may not have occurred whilst Helen Clark was Prime Minister, unless you are prepared to look into previous National/Act Party members misdeeds to the same extent.

A few names come to mind like Donna Huata Awatere, Tuku Morgan, Pansy Wong for example, not to mention the lying, and fudging of our own current PM. If you have nothing better to do than dig the dirt, at least look at both sides of the coin. I very much doubt that Lui has made any donations to Labour since he got in with National anyway, and they are hiding those

From jockeyboy

You don’t have an agenda against labour so much as a gushing, cheerleading pro-national one.

And Tom S

The fact you feeled compelled to write a mealy mouthed self-justifying editorial tells the world that you guys are guilty as hell.

“…accusations of political bias and complicated right-wing conspiracies…”

Actually the conspiracy isn’t that complicated. The National Party research unit told your reporter jared Savage where to look and then the Herald went into full smear mode with an unverified statement (not an affivdavit) that the Herald has spent the last week restracting and backsliding from. I am not sure what is more disgraceful.

The sloppy journalism and colusion with theNational Party or the arrogance and hubris that means you think you can smear and get away with it. I hope Labour sue APN and get a front page retraction.

Have a read.  It is refreshing to see that so many people are upset by what has happened.

And for some light relief I suggest you read the questions and answers to the trade me listing where John Key’s latest book is being sold.  The vendor has a very sharp sense of humour.

My personal favourite …

Q  Does it answer where he stood on the issue of the Springbok tour?
A  There was a springbok tour?

65 comments on “The people respond to the Herald Editorial on Donghua Liu”

  1. weka 1

    I hadn’t listened to Murphy on RNZ, so was pleased to see this comment,

    Next day when asked on Radio NZ “Do you stand by your story?” your editor said this, and I quote verbatim: “Well, what’s not to stand by. Donghua Liu made this claim, he signed it, we have the document, now whether he is correct is yet to be seen.”

    Meta – New Zealand – 09:10 AM Friday, 27 Jun 2014

    So there it is, plain as day – the Herald believes that its job is to report what people say, irrespective of whether it is the truth or not, and there is no obligation on the Herald to verify what someone says before they publish.

    • Tracey 1.1

      so, if they dont have to verify sources or accuracy, what are we all basing our belief that is what journalists should do?

    • Lanthanide 1.2

      “So there it is, plain as day – the Herald believes that its job is to report what people say, irrespective of whether it is the truth or not”

      Well that’s patently obvious, based on their typical repetition of government talking points without the merest skerrick of fact-checking or verification.

      • weka 1.2.1

        True, but historically it could be assumed that politicians didn’t tell outright lies to journalists (Key has a lot to answer for for having shifted the culture around this in the past 6 years). Fudging facts sure, but not outright lies. So politicians would be considered to be reliable sources that needed less fact checking than Joe Blog off the street.

        And there are obvious differences between a government announcing policy etc, and a businessman making statements that obviously undermine a political party.

        The question here is why did the Herald consider Liu to be such a credible source that his statements didn’t need fact checking? When the Herald is willing to be honest about that they might get some respect back.

    • Ed 1.3

      So does this mean The Herald thinks Cameron Slater is a journalist?

  2. karol 2

    Nice try with your column too in trying to say oh we just upset people across the spectrum at different times. This is rubbish

    Exactly, and the NZ herald coverage of the Liu issue shows clearly why this is the lame fall-back claim used by a biased MSM.

    Upsetting people on both left and right is not the evidence for lack of bias. It’s about how the truth is represented and/or spun. It’s about fact checking and doing some fairly in-depth analysis – clearly beyond the ken of today’s NZH editorial writer.

    • Tracey 2.1

      that the herald editorial today, and editor in chief cant grasp the distinction outlined in your last paragrapgh makes them either frighteningly dim witted…

    • mickysavage 2.2

      The right gets upset when the Herald says the truth about them whereas the left gets upset when the Herald tells lies about them …

      • Kiwiri 2.2.1

        Very true and succinct.

        Tracy @ 2.1: the editor-in-chief is frighteningly dim-witted or so biased that he cannot tell his right hand from his left.

      • Karen 2.2.2

        Well said Mickysavage

      • Once was Pete 2.2.3

        I just have to call you on that statement.It is such an absolute and can’t possibly be factual. I can see why you want to protect David Cunliffe, and that is an admirable quality, but really there is just no merit to such a claim.
        I just have to conclude it is tongue in cheek.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.4

        MS: BOOOM!

  3. Lorraine 3

    I think the mainstream media are shockingly in the pockets of the PM. He makes inflammatory remarks about Labour and Cunliffe and your are like savage dogs after Labour. Issues at most are nothing out of the norm and are 11 years old. How pathetic are you so called journalists. You sit back and let Liu lie through his teeth without hounding him. You let John Key infer all sorts of rubbish in the John Key roamer mill. What truth has come out of Key’s mouth about Liu re Labour. Nothing, it is part of his spin. He is a master at that. Now he is bribing the rich with tax cut promises again. When are those not so well off going to get anything but a kick in the teeth.

  4. veutoviper 4

    Having wasted hours this morning reading the Herald’s ‘editorial’ (which can hardly be called that) and all the comments, I actually think this is going to backfire badly on The Herald, and hopefully National.

    As well as the Trade Me thread which is hilarious, this Twitter thread is very active today and is also good for a laugh

    https://twitter.com/hashtag/NZHeraldHeadlines?src=hash

    MS – you may want to check out a BB comment on the DinPost’s WTF post, if you haven’t seen it.

  5. JamesMaxton 5

    Surely David Cunliffe and the Labour party will never find themselves in a better position to silence this rag of a paper if they proceed with legal action.
    If they do not it could be construed as if they have something to hide.

    Please show us you are willing to fight to win this election.

    • mickysavage 5.1

      If they do not it could be construed as if they have something to hide.

      The party may have better things to do like fight a campaign.

      • Chooky 5.1.1

        this one needs fighting imo…they should hand it over to Labour friendly ferocious lawyers…. and concentrate on the campaign…otherwise if they ignore it , it will come back to bite them!

        people want to see Labour with a bit of fight for Gods sake!…otherwise they are really not worth voting for imo

      • JamesMaxton 5.1.2

        Can’t Labour walk and chew gum at the same time.

        It will be lawyers who will do the legwork, not David Cunliffe.

        I want to see Labour show some aggression, fight for principle, fight back when someone kicks you in the bollocks.

        • Colonial Viper 5.1.2.1

          If anything proceeds Cunliffe needs to be distant from it, running a fully positive campaign, the Labour Gen Sec or similar can take the action.

        • kenny 5.1.2.2

          I’ve always thought you should play by the same rules as your opposition – if they want to fight clean then you fight clean; if they want to fight dirty then they had better be prepared for what comes. And no-one feels sorry for the guy who has sand kicked in his face if he is not prepared to fight back.

    • lprent 5.2

      Please show us you are willing to fight to win this election.

      Why it will take at least a year or two to come to court. It can easily be started after the election. In the meantime there is an election campaign to run.

      Doesn’t apply to us of course. We are free to torment the Herald whenever.

      • JamesMaxton 5.2.1

        I am quite aware it takes a long period before any action would reach a court.

        If they started the proceedings it would show us and the right wing press they are willing to fight,
        it would also act as a warning for the duration until the election.

        What advantage would they receive if they left it to post election.

        • lprent 5.2.1.1

          They won’t get gratuitous negative headlines every day?

          • JamesMaxton 5.2.1.1.1

            Negative headlines are par for the course, they will never cease.

            We are discussing an article which was untrue.

            I will repeat again, if Labour do not take some legal position on the articles they leave themselves wide open for the right to ask what are they hiding.

            • Lanthanide 5.2.1.1.1.1

              “I will repeat again, if Labour do not take some legal position on the articles they leave themselves wide open for the right to ask what are they hiding.”

              Perhaps in your little mind.

              • JamesMaxton

                So when someone on this site makes a suggestion they are ridiculed with the comment “perhaps in your little mind”.

                No positive discussion, just a put down comment.

                I thought we were on the same side.

        • Chooky 5.2.1.2

          JamesMaxton+100…if they want to win the working class male vote they shouldn’t keep rolling with the punches …they should stand up and fight!

          …they should indicate they are suing or at least fighting this shit with all they have got!…it is a matter of principle!

          ….there must be enough Labour friendly lawyers to take it on as a team gratis…Labour could ask for donations for court costs …and set up a separate committee to fight it in public…while the rest of the Party gets on with the campaign

          they have to take the fight back to where the dirt came from

          …who wants to vote for a wimp Party?

    • Clemgeopin 5.3

      When there is a legal action, it silences both parties. That is a double edged sword because it will deprive Labour from exposing National’s dirty tricks.

      • Chooky 5.3.1

        ok …well maybe there needs to be a special committee set up expose to “National’s dirty tricks” at every opportunity…and call the Herald and other media to account on their uncritical and biased reportage

        …while the rest of the Labour team continues with the policy announcements and electioneering

        ….because at the moment the Liu/Key smear campaign seems to be working with impunity against Cunliffe and Labour

      • kenny 5.3.2

        No it won’t – but it will make the Herald editorial staff realise they can’t get away with their constant bias and one-eyed reporting.

        • Ed 5.3.2.1

          Is anyone aware of whether there has been a complaint to the Press Council?

          Is there any requirement on a newspaper to ensure at least a smidgeon of “balance” – at least in the few months before an election? (and I do see that as a separate issue from the printing of deliberate lies)

    • Once was Pete 5.4

      What is the cause of action?

  6. Bearded Git 6

    Toby Manhire is on the money today as usual.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11282589

    How long before he is axed for not towing the Herald line?

    • weka 6.1

      I thought he did well too. I liked this,

      If it seems a dismal beginning to the election campaign, there is cause to hope that this has been a flash flood, rather than the start of a long storm. Do not despair: the next 12 weeks need not be full of muck-raking and dirty tricks.

      On the contrary, this promises to be a policy-dominated campaign.

      Good move.

      • Bearded Git 6.1.1

        Agreed weka. Lab/Green/IMP will offer a genuine alternative to the corporate-led lot we’ve got at the moment.

        This message needs to go out loud and clear, which means no more Liu and not letting the MSM suck the Left into other time-wasting tittle-tattle issues.

    • Chooky 6.2

      thought Toby Manhire’s article too soft….this fiasco has done real damage to the Labour Party imo…unless they take the lies and sheet it back home from whence it came

      while the middle class Labour vote will read behind the lines of this beat up …and still vote Labour …the working class male will not…and he wont be forgiving…no one wants a wimp Party!…they want a fighting Party !…and a winner! …thus far Labour is neither

  7. hoom 7

    The most amazing thing to me is that of all the people, Fran O’Sullivan actually wrote a more or less fair & reasonable article O_o

    • Tracey 7.1

      which shows how bad the behaviour has got. mind you the herald was busy covering some book launch today. ..

    • mickysavage 7.2

      Fran’s article was exquisitely good. I have had problems with some of her articles in the past although she is always complex. I will always give her views the respect that this article deserves.

  8. Jack 8

    The NZ Herald and its journalists are rotten to the core, it is a very dangerous situation whereby media can influence peoples opinions by printing unsubstantiated material and mistruths, and are in cohoots with political parties.

  9. Jack 9

    Labour need a media management/crises team to respond otherwise Nationals Dirty Tricks Brigade will run a muck again in the very near future, Key added fuel to the fire on this one in an orchestrated campaign against Cunliffe supported by a grubby media.

    Cunliffe should have said he was unaware of any dealings with Liu and would investigate further and check our records. National and the NZ Herald had set him up and were in like rabbid dogs.

  10. Clemgeopin 10

    The comments on the book sale on Trade Me are hilarious.

    This one made me LO loud!

    Q : Ive heard if you scruch the pages up enough then unfold them they will be soft enough to wipe you arse. (10:46 pm, Thu 26 Jun)

    A : Yep. 255 pages. Suitable for 255 people or Gerry Brownlee.

    And this :
    Q : I am wondering how managed to get a copy as the latest goss going is that that Liu character has bought the whole lot of copies to use them for some useful purpose on his river trip up the Yangtze for his and his staff use!

    A:Thanks for that info Shane. How’s the new job going? Seen any good movies lately?

  11. Jrobin 11

    Just read about 100 comments on the editorial. How heartening, so there are some thinking people reading the Herald and feeling disgusted. This could be going to backfire badly on Key.

  12. interesting how both john armstrong and the herald have flushed any credibility they had down the toilet..

    ..the herald has..in the space of a very short period of time..

    ..gone from (however inaccurately) being thought of as a journal of some credibilty..

    ..to a resucitated version of ‘truth’..

    ..from now on..whenever they claim anything..the first response from readers who know of this clusterfuck..will be:..

    ..’really..?..show us the evidence..!’..

    • Richard Christie 12.1

      interesting how both john armstrong and the herald have flushed any credibility they had down the toilet.

      It’s time for jobs in the field that are more suited to their talents, Murphy and Armstrong should move on to sell advertising for the suburban freebies.

  13. Chooky 13

    ‘The Donghua Liu Affair – the impending final act and curtain-fall in this smear-campaign’

    By Frank Macskasy / June 27, 2014

    As the the final acts in the smear campaign that was the Donghua Liu Affair are about to unfold, and the curtain soon to fall, it is worthwhile re-assessing what has occurred; what has been learned; and the fall-out for certain individuals…….

    Legal Action
    Without a doubt, Labour – and specifically, David Cunliffe – have no choice. They must take legal action for defamation against the Herald. The kind of shabby, tabloid-style “journalism” shown since June 18 has further undermined the Fourth Estate’s credibility (whether Herald staff and management realise this or not, is irrelevant) and must not be allowed to become the new default standard by which editors and journalists operate in this country.

    For these reasons, Labour must sue for three good reasons;

    It runs the risk that the public ‘memory’ on this incident will be fixed at the point of “revelations” about a “$100,000 bottle of wine” – not that Liu changed his story. Nor that no evidence was forthcoming.
    If the Liu Affair goes to Court, the process of discovery may reveal who was behind this smear campaign.
    If the phone tapping/”News of the World” scandal in Britain has shown us anything, it is that the tabloid journalism road, where irresponsible reporting becomes an acceptable ‘norm’, leads to unpleasant (and often illegal) consequences.

    However, my advice to Cunliffe and the Labour Party is to defer legal action until after 20 September. The Labour Party cannot afford distractions this close to an election.

    Rapid Response Team

    Unless Labour already has one, I suggest that they create a media “rapid response group” which can ‘kick in’ when the next smear campaign rears it’s ugly head. (Mark my words, the next dirty trick is probably already in the works.)

    Such a group could comprise of senior party members, MPs, legals, media minders, etc, and could ‘swing into action’ at the first hint of another event like the Liu Affair.
    Every Labour candidate should have an easy-to-contact “rapid response group” team-member on their phone’s speed-dial……..

  14. Clemgeopin 14

    Watch John Campbell’s encounter of the Liu character at his house.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Elusive-Lius-lengths-to-escape-the-media/tabid/817/articleID/350499/Default.aspx

    • Chooky 14.1

      …so obviously he lied because he hasn’t got the guts to front up!

      …he should be held to account by the Labour Party and New Zealanders for trying to derail New Zealand’s democratic process and the Labour Party by fraud and defamation …ie corrupt a fair election process….(and so should John Key and the Herald be held to account).

      I agree with Frank Macskasy…legal action is required by the Labour Party otherwise democracy is being eroded in New Zealand.

      If Labour lets this go it reflects badly on them..as if they are acquiescing.

      • Craig Glen Eden 14.1.1

        I agree Chooky Labour has to stand up to this shit, enough of the excuses Micky. Cunliffe has to harden up and show New Zealanders he is the Leader that they need to take this country forward. Its not going to get any easier should he be the next PM. The right wing will be vicious in their resistance to policy that will allow all NZers to fully share in the economy. When the Trade Unions didnt strike with Nationals ECA they were forever weakened. Honestly this is Cunliffes high tide moment its now or never for him as a leader. Stand up David Cunliffe and give NZ something to believe in and vote for, if you dont why the hell should they come out and vote for Labour why?

    • Kiwiri 14.2

      Lovely.

      The invitation to Mr Liu should also be extended to Michael Woodhouse to accompany Liu to Campbell’s interview.

    • Ed 14.3

      All good stuff, but why was Campbell not also asking John Key why the donations of hundreds of thousands Key said had been given to National have not been declared?

      Or why letters from MPs about Liu’s citizenship have been hidden from journalists?

  15. ianmac 15

    Because John Campbell tried to find Mr Liu to ask him about the $100,000 bottle of wine I have emailed John Campbell. I included the current Herald photo of Mr Barker receiving the bottle of wine at the charity auction.
    I included the oars donation and the boat dinner no donations to the Labour Party..
    I referenced Frank MacsKasky’s timeline and referenced the 300+ responses to the shameful Editorial from the Herald today.
    Hope Frank is happy with that.
    Hope John does something with the story.

    • Anne 15.1

      Thanks for that ianmac. John Campbell is one of our few genuine current affairs TV or radio hosts.

      Frank Macskasy’s latest post on The Daily blog is a must read:

      http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/06/27/the-donghua-liu-affair-the-impending-final-act-and-curtain-fall-in-this-smear-campaign/

      Edit: Chooky’s already posted it. Never mind.

      • bad12 15.1.1

        The final act and the curtain falling need be the total boycott of every fair minded person in this country of purchasing any product from the NZHerald,

        Its as simple as that, should the Herald lose the monies paid out every day by that huge cohort of fair minded people in this country,(or part of it), it is likely to become too great a burden for its owners, the various arms of International Capital that prop it up will eventually walk away,

        The Liu story, as much of it, in my opinion, manufactured, as from the mouth of Mr Liu looks remarkably like a work of fiction, not from one who barely understands the English language, more likely to have been the ”production” of a mind well schooled in the nuances of the language,

        The ”fact” that the Herald will not simply print the ”supposed” statement from Mr Liu and likewise the ”supposed” amendment by Mr Liu leads me to the belief that such a comprehensive statement does not actually exist,

        The ”fact” that the Herald cannot point to ”the specifics” of the ”supposed” donations by Liu to the Labour Party, except for a gift to the Napier rowing club, leads me to the further belief that such a comprehensive statement supposedly made by Mr Liu does not in fact exist,

        As i pointed out after the initial ”revelations” surrounding the ”supposed” 100,000+ dollar donations from Liu to the Labour Party that i believed the Herald would begin to back-slide from the original claim, making further claims that ”facts” had been lost in ”translation” so this has come to pass,

        This isn’t a partly manufactured story, this is a wholly fabricated attack on the Labour Party with the intent of formulating enough disquiet so as to gift National the upper hand going into the election,

        As i point out above, the only logical means we have at our disposal of making our displeasure properly felt in the boardrooms that control the Herald is a total boycott of the NZHerald in terms of purchasing any of its product, and the Left should begin to organize such a boycott as soon as possible…

        • Richard Christie 15.1.1.1

          the Left should begin to organize such a boycott as soon as possible…

          +1

          Suggestion, call it

          The people deserve better.

  16. yeshe 16

    This extract from the Comments section awoke my interest to know what and where the useful evidence might be found:

    …… “Firstly, funny enough I am a centre / right voter, but my concerns for the direction this Country has taken since it elected Key as Prime Minister are very real. Even his placement as leader of the National Party (when I was still a National voter) was highly questionable and concerning, especially when I was told 12 months before he became leader he would become the Leader, and there were already plans to ensure he became NZ’s Prime Minister, for reasons that had nothing to do with NZ! ” …….

    BehaviourSkills – Dunedin – 11:24 AM Friday, 27 Jun 2014

  17. jaymam 17

    John Key has just said on The Nation that there is proof that Liu donated $15,000 to Labour.
    Where’s the proof?

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  • PGF grant for Ventnor memorial
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    3 weeks ago

  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
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  • Concern at introduction of national security legislation for Hong Kong
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  • New District Court Judge appointed
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  • Investment in New Zealand’s history
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  • Great Walks recovery on track for summer
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