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The tipline has a SST column

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, December 7th, 2014 - 36 comments
Categories: Judith Collins, national - Tags:

Judith Collins debuted this morning as a columnist in the Sunday Star Times.

It is an interesting concept.  I am a bit of a purist and always thought that the fourth estate should be kept away from the politicians.  It is bad enough that corporate interests are so well represented.  Giving politicians a direct feed into a newspaper feels a bit North Korean to me.

She obviously feels exonerated by the Chisholm Report.  It did what was intended and acquitted her of the allegations that she had used Cameron Slater to attack former Serious Fraud Office head Adam Feeley.  It is a shame that Mark Hotchin, Cathy Odgers and Carrick Graham were not interviewed.  The allegation is that they sought to affect a SFO investigation and such activity should not be allowed in a civilised society.  As well as this Chisholm could have been asked to investigate related attacks on former head of the Financial Markets Authority.

Adam Feeley was interviewed recently by reporter David Williams of the Otago Daily Times.  He had a few interesting things to say:

Yesterday, Mr Feeley, who left the SFO to take the helm at the Queenstown Lakes District Council, told the Otago Daily Times the Chisholm inquiry’s terms of reference were very narrow.

“You’ve got a report that’s given within the constraints of fairly tightly-defined terms of reference, so in that sense, yes [the decision was inevitable].”

Justice Chisholm’s 98-page report said an electronic search of Ms Collins’ email, telephone and social media records turned up “very little” relevant material; her Facebook account had been deleted and comprehensive phone records were not available.

The report details how former Hanover director Mark Hotchin, who tasked public relations consultant Carrick Graham — who then engaged bloggers Mr Slater and Cathy Odgers — to “rebalance” the public perception of the businessman, whose company was being investigated by the SFO.

Justice Chisholm decided not to interview Mr Hotchin.

Feeley had one of the most understated yet best descriptions of the effect that Dirty Politics had on him.

“I think most people see me as an unfortunate meat in a very unpleasant sandwich.”

Collins debut column (not on line yet) is about the dangers of drilling and cutting concrete fibre board without adequate ventilation and protection.  The issue is an important one.  If inhaling specks of dust has a similar effect to asbestos then the results can be disastrous.  This is a topic worthy of discussion.

There was an accompanying article which provided some comment by Collins about her recent problems.  Apparently she never liked the name “Crusher” and the framing of her character as someone to be feared was all a big misunderstanding.  And her plight was caused by other people, not by her own actions.

As for Dirty Politics she says essentially that Hager has cherrypicked a few comments from a large collection of her messages and emails to make her look bad.  In one intriguing passage she is quoted as saying:

Aside from the book’s serious allegations, such as her potential connection to Slater’s ugly campaign against civil servant Simon Pleasants, she is also quoted mouthing off about “total destruction”, and “rewarding” enemies with “double”, and how “if you can’t be loved, then best to be feared”.

Such bellicose talk was just “nonsense”, says Collins, and the impression Hager created of her “was so false in many ways”.

Maybe so. Yet for anyone who had watched Collins in action through the year – during her increasingly combative responses to questions about her husband’s company Oravida, during her amusing yet mean-spirited critique of Metiria Turei’s clothing, and especially during her bizarre, vengeful attack on political reporter Katie Bradford – Hager’s portrait of a vindictive, aggressive Collins seemed all too believable.

Collins gets that. “It’s unfortunate that I had allowed the image to become so harsh that people would believe [Hager’s] was a fair rendition. And that’s just stupid to have done that.”

I take it she is claiming saying that she never said or did the things alleged of her.  Certainly she is seeking to recreate a persona that is deeply damaged and scarred with the effects of Dirty Politics and the Oravida scandal.  Some sort of apology would help to speed up the process.

Apparently there will be a prominent hard hitting left wing columnist introduced into the SST next week.  I have no idea who it will be.  But I would prefer that the media put its efforts into proper investigative journalism rather than allowing talking heads to tell us what we should be thinking.

36 comments on “The tipline has a SST column”

  1. Clemgeopin 1

    It is a shame that Mark Hotchin, Cathy Odgers and Carrick Graham were not interviewed. “You’ve got a report that’s given within the constraints of fairly tightly-defined terms of reference, so in that sense, yes [the decision was inevitable”
    Justice Chisholm’s 98-page report said an electronic search of Ms Collins’ email, telephone and social media records turned up “very little” relevant material; her Facebook account had been deleted and comprehensive phone records were not available.

    The ‘report’ was a BS sham. I doubt if many people actually believe the so called ‘findings’ of the report! An expensive whitewash.

  2. ianmac 2

    Judith’s fans will read this as vindication. The others will hoot at the awful cheek at the hypocrisy. Three years of moulding us. Hmmmm.

    • Manuka AOR 2.1

      “Three years of moulding us. Hmmmm.”

      Is the column to be a platform for her next tilt at Nat leadership?

      • ianmac 2.1.1

        A real test of whether we, the public are able to swallow that leopards really can change their spots, or stripes, or turn leers into friendly smiles. Really?

        • Barfly

          by the time the 4th estate has finished some people will believe leopards are vegetarians

    • It’s not that. It’s the right sending a message to left wing critics by pissing in their faces. The message is: “We can do and say whatever we want and get away with anything.”

      Next week Bill Cosby is going to start a column on family advice.

  3. Skinny 3

    The road to redemption is a long one. So the journey begins for Judith Collin, via becoming a Sunday columnist.

    • ianmac 3.1

      Let us believe that Judith is really, really a cute cuddly kitten who really, really just wants to be stroked and loved.

  4. adam 4

    I like the North Korean Reference their Micky. Especially as they shear bad haircuts. You do have to wonder if “crusher” and co, are really in love with Kim Jong-un sometimes, you really do.

  5. hoom 5

    Collins debut column (not on line yet) is about the dangers of drilling and cutting concrete fibre board without adequate ventilation and protection.

    I am immediately wondering which of her close family/acquaintances works for Hardies or other fibrous board manufacturer (who doubtless coincidentally are about to launch a less dusty product)…

    Apparently there will be a prominent hard hitting left wing columnist introduced into the SST next week.

    Probably Mike Hotching or Paul Henry no doubt.
    Best we can hope is fucking useless Mike Williams or Josie Pagani…

    • stuart nash..?..(heh..!..)

      • mickysavage 5.1.1

        I have heard Laila Harre’s name mentioned. Considering her relationship with the Greens and Labour I am not sure she would be the most appropriate choice.

        • phillip ure

          she’s a good writer/thinker tho’…

          ..and her political experiences make her perfect for the job..

          ..’the panel’ on nat-rad should also beg her to join them..

        • Murray Rawshark

          Laila Harré is damaged goods at the moment, since the IP Dotcom business. She comes across as a bit of a carpetbagger as well. I don’t see how a column of hers would help the left at all.

        • Clemgeopin

          She is a good woman.
          It is the Labour party that stupidly did immense wrong to her, IMP, Hone and themselves.

  6. millsy 6

    I think we should take this as a sign that Collins will not be returning to cabinet. Not any time soon anyway…

    • Matthew Hooton 6.1

      Correct. Taking a column is an MP acknowledging their political career is coming to an end.

      • Skinny 6.1.1

        Testing the water for a crack at the Auckland mayoralty one would presume. Dirty Lenny & Bent Bankie are yesterday’s men. She probably will have Goff & Williamson to contend with though.

  7. hoom 7

    Article is up http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/63913395/Judith-Collins-New-wood-worries

    And I’m curious, this is apparently a critique against rushing legislation through parliament without proper Select Committee review, a boost for ‘nanny state’ legislating to protect workers & against overpaid executives who don’t know what they are talking about.

    Crusher is actually a leftie?!?

  8. Morrissey 8

    She’s repulsive. Not the way she looks, but what she has done, from being a casino lawyer to corrupt dealings in China to collaborating with and even instigating Blubberguts’s brutal campaigns of destruction and mayhem. She has gotten away with it, too—she’ll be back in cabinet eventually, and the likes of Andrew Little will be lecturing people to talk about something else.

  9. b waghorn 9

    Is she getting payed and if she is is moonlighting legal for a poli.
    I not to keen on someone I pay to run the country not giving it there full attention. (Sarc sort of)

    • mickysavage 9.1

      I suspect that she is not but this in itself creates a problem in that if our newspapers are going to be full of the free stuff then it will be dominated by Government and Corporate sponsored propaganda. For our media to function properly it needs to have paid investigative journalists who do not have to toe the corporate line.

      • b waghorn 9.1.1

        I’m pretty naive when it comes to politics but giving free space to one side seems to be a very steep slippery slope.

      • miravox 9.1.2

        ” Government and Corporate sponsored propaganda.”

        Advertorial content and should be labelled as such, if it has any place at all in so-called news media.

    • CATMAN 9.2

      “Is she getting payed “

      Well it was paid for by someone.

  10. I buy the SST, a hangover from living in countries with great Sunday papers. Today, I saw she is a columnist and has an article all about her which seems to be the beginning of a planned rehabilitation process. I cannot understand how an MP can be a columnist – it is a platform for her. She is repulsive. No more SST for me.

  11. I hear Judith’s got a upcoming column on the importance of deleting evidence.

  12. Tracey 12

    So, she doesnt have enough to do on her taxpayer salary, that she has the time?

    I dont even think former MPs should be columnists let alone current MPS

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      I think current MPs having a column is a clear conflict of interest on the part of the paper.

  13. diana 13

    I went to purchase a SST today and, as I was walking to the counter to pay for it, saw they had made Judith Collins a columnist. I went and put it back – I will never buy another SST. I don’t believe she should be in Parliament and I’m deeply offended that she is now being given a mainstream media opportunity to further spin her web of toxicity and lies. Bad move SST.

  14. North 14

    It’s all very “butter wouldn’t melt in the mouth” but the nasty piece of work Collins akshilly is sits glowering a millimetre beneath the surface. SST is obliged to give this one a hand up with gratuitous provision of a platform ?

  15. Ross 15

    Collins is a lightweight and pretends she is smarter than she is. I recall her questioning Val Sim during a hearing into the Peter Ellis case and she could not construct a coherent question. Collins of course was a big supporter of Ellis and wanted a wide ranging inquiry into the case. Now you don’t hear boo from her on that issue.

  16. Raa 16

    Someone is giving her exposure for a Thatcherian renaissance, post Key. Unlike Joyce and the Prime Minister, she is capable of stringing a few words together.

    It might have something to do with this ..


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