Trivialising the electoral process

Written By: - Date published: 3:48 pm, October 3rd, 2008 - 28 comments
Categories: election 2008, Media - Tags: ,

I don’t have a lot of time for Winston Peters’ politics or his dodgy electoral practices, but sometimes the man just hits the nail on the head:

Rt Hon Winston Peters has accused a number of media outlets of trivialising general election coverage to the point of mindless banality.

This follows a request from a Sunday newspaper for Mr Peters to discuss whether he owns an iPod and the type of music he likes to listen to on it.

Earlier Mr Peters had been asked about his pets and whether he would be interviewed cooking dinner for radio pensioner Paul Holmes.

“While the Western world lurches into economic meltdown, while tens of thousands of jobs are threatened, while a New Zealand company is embroiled in an international scandal, the media airheads are wandering off into cuckoo-land.

“If anyone ever thought for one nanosecond that the newspaper industry was into thoughtful and serious analysis of the issues facing New Zealand, my suggestion is that they should think again.

Sure makes you think about the Herald’s latest election gimmick, which begins today by asking readers “Which of these politicians would be most likely to help an old lady across the road?” FFS.

I guess “How will these politicians’ policies affect you and your family?” is too much to hope for in election year.

28 comments on “Trivialising the electoral process”

  1. Tane,

    I could not agree with you more.

    Are we going to vote for a “sell us all out” Wall street bankster or a solid “whether we like all of it or not” NZ government.

    This is about Kiwi independence against the Wall street scheisters who would take it all.

    Peters may be a hustler but he is an NZ hustler and he’s seen the writing on the wall. He’s met with Condi and big oil.

    To be honest, I’ll taker him any day over “Slippery” John.

  2. randal 2

    He may be fool but he’s our fool, if they think they’re better than him they’re wrong. (Randy Newman: Rednecks) Yes Tane. the media here is infantilised almost beyond beleif. Try talking to some of the little blighters and the depth of their ignorance and the breadth of their juvenile self love is almost beyond belief. Umm..no its not. sorry, it is totally believable.

  3. In Holland during II WW. The Germans wanted to take away the Jewish population of Amsterdam.
    The Dutch were as anti Semitic as the rest of Europe but the Dutch workers stood up to that and their war cry? “They may be Jews but they are our Jews.”

    Many Dutch citizens died as a result of that action but may Jews were saved as a result and I am proud of those people.

    If Peters shows the same courage then good for him.

  4. Tane 4

    Guys I’d take Winston as he comes. He’s a an economic populist with an anti-immigrant bent. Sometimes he works in the Left’s favour, sometimes against it. It’d be dangerous to put too much stock in him or see him as any kind of ally or saviour. He is what he is.

    And I’ve never heard Peters say “They may be Somalis but they’re our Somalis.” Quite the opposite.

  5. higherstandard 5

    Good Lord – I’d suggest that if you believe anything that this man puts out in a press release you need your head reading.

    He hates the media and every four years he feels the need to wind them screech wildly, although I suppose all he needs is 5% of the population to take him seriously and believe he’s the saviour and he’s back in parliament again and what’s worked in the past will probably work again.

  6. Tane 6

    It’s an analysis HS, and one that I agree with. I’m not being asked to accept his word on anything, I’m being asked to agree with the proposition that the media is more focused on trivialities than informing the public about their real choices this election. My experience, as explained in the post, suggests he’s onto something.

    I don’t have to agree with Winston’s politics to find his views on this interesting, and I really don’t know what the latest poll results have to do with anything.

  7. higherstandard 7

    It’s not an analysis – it’s a sound bite from a bitter old loon who should fade into obscurity and who has made a living out of baiting and disparaging the media.

  8. Tane 8

    It’s accurate though, isn’t it?

  9. higherstandard 9

    No I don’t believe it is accurate for the following reasons.

    1. The NZ public has a very very short attention span so the coverage will be ramped up now that we’re into electioneering proper – also sadly a large section of the public just don’t give a damn.

    2. There is still not huge amounts of policy in the public arena from the two major parties to run comparisons on.

    3. If you look there is a fair amount of information and comment in the media in relation to the election already.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/vote08/
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz-election-2008

  10. Billy 10

    But surely the important question is: what is on Winston’s ipod?

    Afghan Whigs’ Let me Lie to you?

    Megadeth’s Almost Honest?

    If I had $1000000 by the Barenaked Ladies?

    Does this make me part of the problem?

  11. Matthew Pilott 11

    Billy – I was thinking more along the lines of the Divinyls…

    And yes, clearly.

  12. Billy 12

    Well, he’s only human…

  13. burt 13

    Tane

    I agree with almost of all of your comments in this thread about Winston. I’ve read the quotes you provided in the original post such as;

    This follows a request from a Sunday newspaper for Mr Peters to discuss whether he owns an iPod and the type of music he likes to listen to on it.

    Earlier Mr Peters had been asked about his pets and whether he would be interviewed cooking dinner for radio pensioner Paul Holmes.

    However rather than take Winston’s word on anything he says, because the majority of our honorable members don’t think he’s reliable in that regard, I wondered why such journalistic BS should occur. I came to a different conclusion to Winston on why that was. It’s because Winston’s a wind bag, he’s always ‘No comment sub judice’ or he’s accusing the reporters of spreading vile lies. If I were a reporter I’d ask him some banal shit questions as well. Perhaps I wouldn’t actually, I’d bait him and I’d be called a liar when I described what occurred next.

    Oh well, one way or the other – So I’ll go ya 50/50 that the reporter had nothing left to ask VS Winston’s right and the media are hopeless.

  14. Quoth the Raven 14

    The NZ public has a very very short attention span

    Do you speak for the NZ public now HS? I think it’s actually the media that has a short attention span.

  15. higherstandard 15

    QTR

    Show me some evidence to the contrary.

  16. burt 16

    Quoth the Raven.

    I totally agree with HS on this one. Looked how bored people are with the Winston story. It’s one of the biggest political events in modern politics. Parliament has been sidetracked for months by a fricken “NO” sign and now, now we even have amended returns. Still he soldiers on and the PM endorses it. I wonder if the PM has expressly given Peters the OK to keep the donation or do you think she might suggest he pays it to a secret charity of his choosing? Some quick reinterpretations of the Cabinet Manual and bingo he’s done nothing wrong. The papers can’t keep a story like this front page forever – where he should be with Labour explaining why they still have confidence in him.

    However – It’s all over – now the voters will decide.

  17. hs. you’re making the postive assertion, you provide the evidence. otherwise i may as well claim i have an invisable fairy in my hand and challenge you to show that i don’t

  18. burt 18

    Steve Pierson

    It’s not a fairy, it’s not invisible either. Thankfully though we can’t see it via this blog so we don’t think to ask what it is doing there. 🙂

  19. burt. lol. i’ve been using that thought experiment for a year or two and that’s the best response i’ve got back.

  20. burt 20

    It’s not a fairy, it’s not invisible either. Thankfully though we can’t see it via this blog so we don’t think to ask why it’s in your hand when you are blogging.

    Was my fist attempt, I took the less blatant approach for fear of banning.

    Cheers.

  21. The standard of Journalism in this country is zilch, that goes for all genres of media, News, Politics, sports or Music.

  22. randal 22

    well get on to that right away bd and leave politics to the big boys!

  23. Jum 23

    higherstandard
    October 3, 2008 at 5:51 pm

    you think the word ‘fair’ should be in the same sentence as ‘stuff’ and ‘herald’? I don’t.

  24. Both “60 Minutes” and “20 / 20” were on last night. The content was the usual collection of freak shows, tear jerkers and frothy nothing…..and not a word about the election or the financial meltdown or any attempt to actually cover anything that resembled news or current affairs.

    What a waste.

  25. Rex Widerstrom 25

    Perhaps the media believe that music, pets and favourite foods are the only questions to which they have the slightest chance of getting an honest answer? They’d be wrong though…

    Reporter: Mr Peters, there appears to be a ferret in your trousers. Is it a pet?
    WP: What?! Why you unreconstructed four flushing moron! How dare you!
    Reporter: Well it’s head’s poking out of your flies…
    WP: What? Well that wasn’t there when you asked the question before. Brian Henry must have just put it there now. Brian, go and send me an email and just confirm that will you?
    Reporter: Okay… well now we’ve established you have a ferret…
    WP: What? See this sign, sunshine? It says NO.
    Reporter: So you’re syaing you don’t own a ferret?
    WP: Maybe. If you did your research you’d know the answers.
    Reporter: But it’s obvious… look, now it’s peeping out of your double-breasted jacket.
    WP: No it isn’t.
    Reporter: But it’s right there!
    WP: You’re wrong. Typical… I demand your resignation and that of your editor. This email from my barrister clearly states it’s a possum.
    Reporter: So he gave you the… err… possum?
    WP: No, someone gave it to him to give to me.
    Reporter: So you asked Brian Henry to find you a possum, and he went and got it from someone else?
    WP: Print that and I’ll sue, sunshine! At no time did I ever ask Mr Henry to get me a ferret… I mean possum. Entirely at his own initiative he went and got it and stuck it down my trousers. And I didn’t know it was there till he emailed me…

    …etc.

  26. burt 26

    Hone Harawira was very impressive on Pacifica last night. Anderton… was that some robot droid is is that really all there is to the man?

  27. Lipper 27

    By the time of the election, we will see what credibility Winston Peters has with the General Voting Population.

    As always, there will be strong support from a tiny fringe.

    The disappointment has to be that when talking to Paul Henry, Our PM was convinced that John Key is a duplicitous liar. Yet he is also an honorable member, is he not? Yet Winston Peters gets full benefit of the doubt despite overwhelming evidence.

    You might find that it is this inseparability that will give Labour the worst result in living memory.

  28. randal 28

    lipper and YOU might find tht all your blather is just p*ssing in the wind trying to keep your spirits up in the dark. Natoinal is going to get a whipping like they have never had before. they are laden with crooks, pinchpennies cheats and chisellers and they want a go…….hahahahahahahaha…go and get st*FFED!

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