What is it with Herald Gossip Columnists?

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 am, July 5th, 2015 - 197 comments
Categories: Media, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

Another Herald Gossip columnist with strong National Party links, Pebbles Hooper, created a stir yesterday on Twitter by suggesting that the tragic death of an Ashburton mum and her three children was “natural selection”.  Although the causes of their death are known the police are still investigating the incident.  Police think the carbon monoxide poisoning they suffered from  occurred because the mother left a car running to charge up its battery.  Fumes entered the house and overcame everyone.  The incident has the hallmarks of a simple yet tragic mistake.

It is not unknown for mother’s (or fathers) to have momentary lapses and this tragic example from Whanganui shows that talented health professionals for instance are not immune from making mistakes.

But Hooper obviously does not tolerate any sort of human frailty.  Although she should reflect on herself because she has displayed human frailty in abundance.  Firstly she managed to conclude the tragic Ashburton incident is evidence of human frailty, then confused the situation by claiming that the children’s deaths were part of natural selection without knowing anything about them, then thought about tweeting this, then tweeted it even thought she knew she would “get major slack for this”.  She subsequently tweeted that she was “not looking to be controversial or outrageous” which suggests that her prediction levels and her compassion levels are non existent.

Twitter responded appropriately and here are a few gems:




197 comments on “What is it with Herald Gossip Columnists? ”

  1. Low and foul – nice one peebles – thank goodness nothing is ever lost on the net because this one is a keeper, all for you.

    • Tracey 1.1

      Much like Hoskings (also not a journalist) taking a 20% increase in champagne sale sin Greece and assuming it means average greeks are partying… and self righteously spouting it as truth which is the wealthy tourists are drinking more. Better use of his airtime than pointing out the 35% increase in suicides in Greece. 35%.

      Glucina, Pebbles, Hoskings are part of the great “if I think it I must say it and it must be right” plunge into lowest common denominator thinking, sadly the majority are thinking this way and getting their myths reinforced by these people.

      Facts. Pah. “I reckon: is the new way.

      In the meantime rich parents, are using lawyers to get their children into sports teams, debate teams and leading role sin musicals at schools…

    • Wensleydale 1.2

      I can’t take someone named “Pebbles” seriously anyway. That probably makes me an awful human being.

      • Stuart Munro 1.2.1

        You are merely reacting to her origins in animated comedy – no doubt before very long we shall have the option of voting for a Gnat candidate called “Bam-Bam”.

    • Chooky 1.3

      +100 marty mars…disgraceful ignorant comment from someone with the hardness and sensitivities of a stone

  2. Paul 2

    Pebbles Hooper comes from a very comfortable background and clearly has no understanding or empathy for the lives many NZers live.

    Here is some background.

    • Sanctuary 2.1

      “… I wasn’t very academic at school and Mum and Dad never pushed me very hard. I never did much study. ..”

      Stupid, lazy and indigent, by her own measure she deserves nothing more than a life of poverty on the dole in a shitty, freezing house miles from anywhere.

      Or is being stupid, lazy and having neglectful parents only a crime if you are born poor?

      • Paul 2.1.1

        Clearly no connection to reality…..

        “We’re pretty normal really ”

        “We travelled heaps, buying trips – never holidays. Mum and Dad worked all the time and I tagged along. We went to London, Paris, New York, Hong Kong, Sydney.”

        • greywarshark

          This is the crucible where selfish, greedy, narcissistic National Party voters are formed (from the NZ Herald profile piece.)

          School wasn’t such a priority for my parents – they’d take me out to travel. I never wanted siblings myself – I hated the little brothers of my friends. I loved being an only child,… I’m glad I don’t have siblings. I don’t think I could share the attention.

          3. How would you describe your family?
          We’re pretty normal really
          but it’s what my family’s done and the things they are into that are different.
          Mum and Dad didn’t spend money on cars or boats or baches. Dad, especially, saves his money and will buy himself an amazing pair of shoes or something overseas, something that other people would say “you spent how much?”

          5. Are you conservative?
          I’m pretty old fashioned. I’m very conservative in terms of what I think when I watch the news. With the synthetic marijuana stories and the guy who was hooked on it and wanted the Government to help him … I don’t want to pay my taxes because you made a really stupid choice. Heroin addicts I’ve got no sympathy for either.

          But for me! – 9. When have you been at your lowest?
          When I was really ill [with diabetes]. It caused so many different problems it was like it was raining. I was 19 when I found out. You become mentally sick as well as physically sick if you don’t look after yourself and I didn’t for about three years. I wasn’t thinking straight. I weighed about 43kg. My hair fell out. I went to the hospital so many times for not taking my medicine, they sent me to the mental hospital.

          6. Are you an Act Party voter?
          Practically. I’ve already voted National now and I can’t be a politically out there person on Facebook because I would be killed.

          7. [I would disappoint my parents] – if I became a disloyal or untrustworthy person. I could be a feminist, hippie, left-wing, John-Key-hating, never-washing person that lives off the Government and as much as that would make my Dad unhappy, he wouldn’t care as long as I was good to people and trustworthy.

          She was 25 at this interview and revealed that being 15 was her favourite age and wishes she could stay that age.

          • Anne

            I could be a feminist, hippie, left-wing, John-Key-hating, never-washing person that lives off the Government…

            So, that’s what she believes about people who don’t come from her circle of National voters eh? Unbelievable.

            We had one of those feminist, hippy, unwashed so-called beneficiary types being interviewed on Q+A this morning. Her name is Helen Clark.

            • Tracey

              who the SST rather patronisingly call Aunty Helen…


            • the Pink Postman

              Annie .
              Those comments are quite mild when you really hear what these scumbags think.
              For 25 years i worked for the “toffs” what a ghastly lot ,what they thought and said made me cringe but not much I could do at that time in my life.

          • fisiani

            So absolutely NO strong National Party links. Just one of the 47% who voted for them. Criticise the comments if you will but in no way can she be linked to the National Party.
            Alternatively can anyone tell me if a) she is a National member b) what office does she hold in the Nats?
            Otherwise just another failed smear of the National Party. MMMM Why would anyone try to do that?

            • Anne

              what office does she hold in the Nats?

              99% of members and supporters don’t hold any office in the Nats. Twat.

              • fisiani

                She is not a member . How can anyone claim that she has STRONG links to National? Where is the proof?

                • RedLogix

                  At present I am not a member of either Labour or the Greens. However I have donated to both in the past.

                  Despite this it would be reasonable to suggest that, as an active blogger here for many years, Redlogix could be said to have ‘strong links’ to left wing politics. Just as ‘fisiani’ clearly has ‘strong links’ to the National Party.

                  The exact meaning of the term ‘strong link’ can be debated, but it clearly is not the necessarily same thing as ‘membership’. My interpretation is someone who has a strongly identified affiliation, loyalty or commitment to some cause – and made this public.

                  And there is quite sufficient evidence to suggest this shallow little creep strongly identifies with right wing politics and the National Party in particular.

            • dukeofurl

              Farrar doesnt hold any office with the nationals either.

              But note these words of PH
              “I’ve already voted National now and I can’t be a politically out there person on Facebook because I would be killed.”

              and this from Russell Brown

              “Since Andy left, to be replaced by Pebbles Hooper, Spy has been has not been as good. The tidbits are dull, the writing is often clunky and the photopages seem to revolve largely around the Auckland National Party scene that is perhaps the key to all this.


              Shes identifies as a National voter and she writes about national party social events. What does it all mean ?

              • mary_a

                @dukeofurl (

                Been hired by NZH (under instruction), to push the NatzKEY line I’d say!

            • Chooky

              @ fisiani….good to see that even you are embarrassed about the little sinker stone…and her association with the jonkey Nact Party.

              …she is probably a friend of Nacts other infamous ugly PR people too…eg Slater, Farrar ..and the ‘G’ one

          • Naturesong

            It was the last question where she really defines herself:
            12. Where are you happiest?
            Pay day. I get paid monthly and it’s three weeks away and I’m already broke. The bank says I’m not allowed a credit card either. Where do I want to be at 50? Happy and healthy with enough money not to ask Mum and Dad for any.

            Growing up in Mt Eden / Epsom, I’m very familiar with this type. As a general rule, they are exactly as they appear on the packet.

            Critical thinking, curiosity, love of life and community, there tends to be a big empty space where those would normally be.
            Retail therapy being the soma du jour for these folks.

            Some grow out of it. Many don’t.

            That there are people out there that think this, is itself fine, each to their own.
            But, giving someone like this a public platform to spew their ignorance, intolerance and hate?
            Thanks Herald, keep up the good work.

        • North

          Is it correct that the girl’s mother’s that big-fish-little-pond item Denise The-Strange-Ronnie-Corbett who mouths off so inanely on RNZ’s The Panel from time to time ? AKA Auckland Guppyati. If so you can understand the facile dribble from the girl.

  3. Sanctuary 3

    Danyl Mclauchlan nailed it.

  4. BM 4

    What are the strong National party links ?

  5. Stephen 5

    She’s just doing her job. Making people want to buy/read the paper.
    Ethics, schmethics.

    • Paul 5.1

      I was just following orders, said the camp guard…..

    • BM 5.2

      The media is about trolling people these days.
      You write/say/do outrageous/offensive stuff to provoke the masses to get them talking about or discussing you or whatever the topic is that’s been raised

      It’s how the MSM business model works, the key is to not take it too seriously.

      • marty mars 5.2.1

        Do you think it is okay for her to say the things she said (and didn’t it sound like cam really) about people who have died accidentally and horribly? I repeat, do YOU think it is okay?

        • BM

          It wasn’t a very tactful comment, that’s for sure.

          But you got to remember, that’s young people for you, especially these days they’re fearless and have hides like rhinos.

          • marty mars

            tactful??? Is that it bm, is that YOUR thoughts on it, that it wasn’t very tactful. You agree with her comments don’t you – just admit it – and it isn’t anything to do with ‘young people’ and you know it. Have some spine and say YOUR truth or is it even too much for your own stomach to bear.

            • Gangnam Style

              Yes BM what are YOUR thoughts on it, I can tell you mine, they came real easy, I think its a vile thing to say & a vile thing to even think! Not that hard, unless you are a lying hateful scaredy-pants cowardly shitbag who just likes to stir things up.

          • te reo putake

            Apart from the ones who are damaged by bullying, of course. But they don’t count in your world, apparently.

          • Sacha

            she’s 25.

            “I’m a girl” is not a valid excuse by then. Suggests she has been raised by degenerates.

            [lprent: Generally by that age kids have formed their own opinions, including about what their parents opinions are. They are responsible for their own opinions. Leave off the parent bashing and focus on what the post is about. ]

          • JeevesPOnzi

            none of the young people I know.

            You meant to type “that’s scum people for you”

      • mickysavage 5.2.2

        I thought about whether or not doing this post. It is just another case of a right winger with strange world views not having the decency to keep them to herself.

        But you know what? There is whanau and extended whanau grieving right now. They deserve us expressing outrage.

        • Molly


        • AB

          Yes – and I hear this sort of stuff not uncommonly from Nat-voting acquaintances. Usually couched as: “well, probably a good thing that they’re out of the gene pool”

        • RedLogix

          I agree with your reasoning ms.

          At a personal level I really can’t take this over-entitled, immature little snob seriously. My first and most honest reaction was dark laughter.

          But you are right; there are whanau who will be rightly offended and angered by this. They don’t have easy access to a major newspaper.

          Which raises the bigger issue, the one that Danyl so perfectly nailed – exactly why is The Herald giving oxygen to her? I can almost forgive ignorance and youthful stupidity (we’ve all been there) – but she damn well KNEW she was stepping over the line – and did it anyway.

          There is a word for this – hubris. And it appears Tim Murphy has fully embraced it.

          • greywarshark

            I think it is right that ms brought this up. Many of us don’t realise what we are up against in NZ with this latest generation away from the classless equality belief that we older ones grew up with. And we remember the Auckland Herald being a quality paper. If our eyes are opened by them reporting this unattractive little piece, all to the good.

        • Chooky


      • Rob 5.2.3

        There was a time in the 30s & 40s when an element said similar
        things and did play those actions out
        Most of civilisation did not find it was acceptable
        It wasn’t then and for anybody with any respect for
        fellow humans it still isn’t
        A pity our media do not reflect on what they allow?

    • This is exactly why I reject her “not looking to be controversial or outrageous” defence out of hand. Her entire job is to be controversial and outrageous, because otherwise there’d be no real reason for anyone to pay attention to her.

      It’s the same defence used by every shock jock since the dawn of time, and it’s transparent garbage.

      • Tracey 5.3.1

        I actually suspect she does believe what she tweeted…

        • Richard Christie

          I suspect that she is stupid enough not to know what the term ‘natural selection’ even means.

          The girl/woman has air between her ears.

    • Malconz 5.4

      Or as the subeditor character in the excellent ATC production “Rupert” puts it so elegantly (paraphrased): “It doesn’t fookin’ matter if it’s fookin’ true or not so long as people fookin’ buy the fookin’ paper and fookin’ read it!” Sadly that’s apparently fookin’ true.

  6. dv 6

    Could the tweet fall under the new offensive digital communication law?

    • Possibly. It would come down to intent. Her defence would be “I meant no harm and being an arsehole is normal in my circles, your honour.”

      • dv 6.1.1

        Who decides the harm?
        Do you really think that “I meant no harm” is a defence?

      • CnrJoe 6.1.2

        12 ques with pebbles hooper

        “I would never write something about anyone that I wouldn’t say to their face and I know the difference between gossip and something that could ruin your life.”


        • Richard Christie

          Re 12 Questions.

          She resents paying taxes for medical care of others who make the wrong choices yet happily admits to and sees no irony in receiving hospital care for “not taking my medicine”.

          ACT party philosophy all the way.

          • Sacha

            “sees no irony in receiving hospital care for “not taking my medicine”

            yep. Imagine if our health system held these ideological bludgers to their word and refused care that they insisted their taxes should not pay for.

      • lurgee 6.1.3

        Given she anticipated getting ‘slack’ it would appear she knew her comment would be offensive.

        On a positive note, this may mean that the dire Denise L’strange-Corbie will no longer blight The Panel with her idiotic ill thought through opinions.

        • Delia

          Yes and there lies one of the reasons Peebles has the opinions of the poor and vulnerable that she does.

      • North 6.1.4

        “Yeah…..I was just horsing around giggle giggle.”

  7. Anne 7

    Yet another case of unadulterated ignorance and mindlessly stupid brain-farts with a trace of racism thrown in for good measure. We have come to expect nothing less from National Party political stooges who take their lead from the top.

    • Sable 7.1

      Don’t you mean the bottom…..

      • greywarshark 7.1.1

        In the topsy turvy National Alice-in-Wonderland world, top is bottom. Their friends are economists who can present a graph for a clear summary of whatever, but change the axes so it appears that black is white, losing is winning.

        And psychologists have shown the propensity for group think to sway minds of individuals from their known facts and logical thoughts, and be persuaded to agree with others. Very plastic minds we have. And given what Jung said which I put up here some weeks ago, it is a task to turn the minds set on a course away from the danger they are steaming towards.

        Back to ‘Alice’ and fairy tales which are often precautionary rhymes – when Humpty Dumpty fell and broke, he couldn’t be put together again. NZ is like Humpty, sitting on the fence, waiting to be pushed off by the big boys.

        • Macro

          I’m afraid Humpty is already off the wall, and half way to the ground. It will take Superman to swoop in and save him before he breaks.

          • greywarshark

            Well on tv we aren’t short of guys and gals with noble impulses for good. The newer ones The Arrow, the Daredevil…Oh if it was only reality tv in reverse, where they appeared fictional but were actually more truly docos.

            • Macro

              Now you have me there – as I haven’t watched NZ TV since…. I can’t remember when. Must say I don’t miss it – and am very happy not to have any urge to go out and buy anything.

  8. Sable 8

    There you go it was Darwin’s fault……Could the Herald get any weirder….

    • Anne 8.1

      Hah… she’s Denise L’Estrange-Corbet’s “socialite” daughter.

      I heard Mum on Jim Mora’s The Panel about six months ago. The ignorance and mindlessly stupid logic pouring from her mouth was breath-taking. Like mother like daughter.


      • Paul 8.1.1

        Mora’s Panel.
        A platform for some of NZ’s greatest thinkers.

        • greywarshark

          They seem to have dropped the hyperbole about Mora – or it’s just heard less than before. Ha – NZs foremost thinkers and opinion makers or common taters, or similar.

        • philj

          I’ve given up on Mora’s panel. I’m not surprised that ratings are plunging.

      • Tracey 8.1.2

        They can’t call it what is

        The I reckon some stuff I have not researched or even really thought deeply about and am happy to perpetuate no matte rhow harmful Show

        • CnrJoe

          ‘ganswers’ I call them in my family. When a guess is delivered as an answer.

      • ankerawshark 8.1.3

        Seem to remember Denise L’Estrange-Corbet being on an add about mental illness a sort of have compassion theme (which is good). Completely lost respect for her when she came out saying fashion models have to be ultra thin……………Too bad if it promotes eating disorders in the models and other young women.

        [lprent: I suspect that this is getting rather off topic as well. I can see how it drifted there from the comments. However parents aren’t directly responsible for the actions of their supposedly adult progeny. ]

        • Lloyd

          Actually Ankerawshark she said clothes look better on thin models. That’s why World , the fashion label she co-owns, uses them. The MSM didn’t follow up and check the clothes that World sells usually cover a wide range of sizes including large sizes – unlike most fashion labels. World’s customers find that the company makes fashions in a wide range of sizes and they are made in New Zealand by workers getting a good wage, again unlike most clothes available in New Zealand shops.
          Picking on Denise L’Estrange-Corbet for this comment , is a little unfair as clothes usually do look better on a wire coat hanger.

          • ankerawshark

            Ok. I stand corrected.

            However don’t think the clothes look better on skinney models is a good enough arguement. Research clear that skinney models or skinney women on t.v. promote eating disorders.

            I am glad to hear though World pay their workers well.

  9. Virginia 9

    Human frailties there are many, what about being grossly overweight and not being able to control it. What about having major depression?

    Who is Pebbles Hooper’s role model?

    Maybe she should look in her own backyard before commenting on human frailty.

  10. Paul 10

    ” I loved being an only child, Mum picking me up from school and us going off to do things. I was often surrounded by adults and I never yearned to be around kids my age.”

    Says a lot.

  11. Barbara 11

    What a hypocrite. She has one huge human frailty – empathy – empathy is the backbone and anchor of a civilized society – she belongs in a snake pit – and frankly I wouldn’t want to bugger up the snakes’ gene pool with her roaming in it. This could be a test case for the family down in Ashburton to do her for “emotional hurt” – we don’t need her sort in society, I say test it in the courts.

    • greywarshark 11.1

      She has one huge human frailty – lack of empathy – empathy is the backbone and anchor of a civilized society. FIFY (And she has never experienced it, so is an invertebrate.)

    • Molly 11.2

      Empathy does go both ways.

      That is a mean and vicious world that she lives in where every human frailty and situation is judged and found wanting.

      Not one that anyone with a full expression of human experience would want to live in.

      I dismiss her comments because of the lack of empathy, and still will criticise the Herald for their utilisation of her lack of self-awareness for shock value, but pity her world-view and the values poverty of her existence.

  12. Policy Parrot 12

    I would say Karma’s got her lined up for something big.

  13. TE 13

    I think she meant … ‘were National selection’
    thats what happen’s when you are idolising a Bam Bam
    that looks like a Free Willy
    Socialites, is that another word for KardashiansNZCorp?

  14. Bill 14

    Bit of an aside, but does “getting slack” in this part of the world mean something other than ‘being given lee-way’? Or did she just invert the commonly accepted meaning of the phrase?

  15. maui 15

    She’s obviously getting tips from Slater on how to lose all respect.

    Natural selection obviously applied to how she got her current roles with the herald and Henry’s breakfast show too.

    • Policy Parrot 15.1

      “National” selection obviously applied to how she got her current roles with the herald and Henry’s breakfast show too.

      Fixed it for you.

  16. whateva next? 16

    Seems the blog that shall not be mentioned was the tip of the iceburg

  17. G C 17

    “This life’s dim windows of the soul
    Distorts the heavens from pole to pole
    And leads you to believe a lie
    When you see with, not through, the eye.”

    ~William Blake~

  18. dukeofurl 18

    Stuff story about this is strange. It shows the tweets but at the very end, gives a plain text wording
    “”I’m not looking to be controversial or outrageous, simply stating the fact that those kids deserved to be safe”

    This of course was NOT what she was saying. Not clear where this statement came from, but my guess is that some ‘professional advice’ was received that rotated her 180 degrees to make it appear she was ‘concerned about the kids’

    Whats the bet that ‘this’ will be her talking points from here on , as though the previous words about natural selection didnt exist.

    NO Peebles, the kids deserve better than you spitting on their grave.

    She didnt comment after the terrible incident at Whanganui hospital carpark, Darwin for some reason, only happens once names and photographs appear and allow her to play a rich privileged brat ( who has had very good PR advice after the fact)

  19. venezia 19

    Pebbles Hooper…. reflects the arrogance and sense of entitlement of the 1% to which she belongs. It’s the likes of Pebbles and her social circle whose interests the Nactional government serves.
    It is they who benefit from most of the policy disasters we have seen since Nactional came to power. The rest of NZ are disposable.

  20. Mike the Savage One 20

    It seems that those tweeting too much, about whatever frivolities, trivialities and even more serious things tend to lose the normal level of sensitivity, and some get totally out of touch with normal human thinking, feeling and actions.

    As journalists and gossip columnists seem to be doing not much else than the above, they must be more prone to suffer the mentioned deficiencies. Their high level tweeting and messaging leaves them in a sphere where peculiar, bizarre and idiotic behaviour may become the norm.

    That is why I cannot bother with Twitter, as too many using it are nothing but tweeting twits, not really worth communicating with, not worth the attention and not worth any credit.

    Twitter is nothing but a forum for narcissistic, overvalued attention seekers.

    • G C 20.1

      “frivolities” – nice word choice. Love Your Work ‘Mike the Savage One’ 🙂

    • It’s a bit silly to paint all Twitter users with the same brush just because a couple of high-profile ones say obnoxious things. Plenty of high-profile people write obnoxious novels, and we don’t sneer and say “ugh, too many stupid people are writing novels, give them an open-ended word count and they think they can put any old trash in print, that’s why novelists aren’t worth any credit.”

  21. rhinocrates 21

    Since twitter has a strict limit on character count, why not impose some other formal constraint, such as limiting all communications to haiku? People would have to think carefully about what they sent then.




    [lprent: Was nearly going to do a warning about going off topic, but I see that you failed to reply to comment 20. I really need to find a weekend to fix the reply on the mobile version. ]

    • G C 21.1

      I’m always amazed that people actually care what twitter users tweet. The word ‘twitter’ alliterates so well with ‘twit’ and ‘twat’ – it makes you think.

      I understand the linked in nature of twitter, however it’s certainly not my first port of call for intelligent discourse.

    • rhinocrates 21.2

      lprent: actually I just missed hitting the right button to reply to 20 using my desktop. Thanks for pointing it out – it doesn’t make much sense otherwise.

      Believe it or not, I do not have and neither have I ever had a mobile.

  22. Jay 22

    I read the link to that interview of her. She’s just a dum privileged kid who’s never really suffered in her life, and maybe hasn’t experienced grief. She’ll probably now be regretting her heartless comments. If not that only further demonstrates her immaturity.

    Linking her to the national party though is foolish. Next time someone is arrested for rape or murder do we find out who they voted for and then say, “ah yes, they voted for the greens, that explains it”?

    Pretty dum thing to say right?

  23. Visubversaviper 23

    This is what The Herald has sunk to. A mindless girl-child who probably cannot even spell empathy. Employed to write trivia about who went to what party and who wore what frock. Probably on the strength of the fact that her parents made some of those frocks. Sad times indeed.

  24. Kevin 24

    Leaving your car running in a closed garage. That’s not a simple yet tragic mistake. That’s dangerously moronic and a prime candidate for the Darwin Awards.

    • Molly 24.1

      Our government is advocating the equivalence of running a car in a closed garage in respect to climate change. (Despite being able to afford to do otherwise)

      Got anything to say about that Kevin?

      • G C 24.1.1

        Your amazing Molly, love how you just turned that around to be about the environment – that fully cracked me up 🙂

      • RedLogix 24.1.2

        No Kevin will not have anything to say about that Molly.

        Otherwise fucking brilliant – made my day! Both my partner and I roared with laughter 🙂

      • Kevin 24.1.3

        That’s one of the most dumbest attempts at moral equivalence I’ve ever read.

        • te reo putake

          Well, it wasn’t written in crayon, so I’m not surprised.

        • RedLogix

          Yeah I can see how ‘being made to feel dumb’ is the emotion being triggered here Kevin.

          But I’ll put it to you like this. You know what, the mother of these children did make a terrible and stupid mistake. And she and her three children have paid the highest possible personal price for it.

          But making stupid mistakes is something we ALL do. Yes even you Kevin. Fortunately we usually survive them and go on to learn from the experience and not repeat the mistake.

          And this is where Molly’s equivalence sort of breaks down. Right wingers and conservative governments have been repeatedly warned that they are making a very stupid mistake over climate change – by experts – for many decades now. But they have for the most part obdurately refused to learn anything.

          So what kind of personal price do you think they should pay for making this mistake – and to persist in repeating it until far too late? You right wingers are really BIG on personal responsibility. So when it becomes irrefutably apparent that all these conservative coal burners and petrol heads were completely and fatally wrong on climate change – will it be alright with you if we just ‘remove all the people who made it from the gene pool’?

          You can’t possibly have any objections.

    • North 24.2

      Thank you Kebbles.

    • marty mars 24.3

      kevin angry grrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!

      • Kevin 24.3.1

        Not angry, just making a point. You all seem to be making light of the fact that the mother did something incredibly stupid and if she had lived she most certainly would be facing charges.

        [lprent: Maybe, maybe not. I’m pretty sure that the case would be greyer than your ill-informed grunting.

        However the post isn’t about the mother or the children. It is a post expressing an opinion about a stupid ignorant inexperienced judgemental fuckwit with the morality and ethics of a weasel at the NZ Herald who gloated about their deaths.

        Since our site policy demands that you at least attempt to address the context of the post or conversation rather than behaving like an trolling idiot, you will stick to the post topic.

        If you prefer to attack the dead without being aware of most of the facts, then please do it in Open Mike rather than doing diversion trolling here. If you persist in this irritating behaviour on this post, then you will be banned. This is your warning. ]

        • Mary

          “However the post isn’t about the mother or the children. It is a post expressing an opinion about a stupid ignorant inexperienced judgemental fuckwit with the morality and ethics of a weasel at the NZ Herald who gloated about their deaths. ”

          Talking about crazed? Taking it a little to far methinks.

          You could be up for defamation and causing “emotion harm” yourself!

          Are you sure you can run this site?

          [ lprent: Yep. The stupidity is strong in this one.
          1. Moderators job.
          2. You don’t understand defamation law.
          3. I think that the “Harm” act is both unworkable, unenforceable, and I am happy to drag it into the courts (I’d point out that I am my own provider).
          4. I have been running it for nearly 8 years. We don’t get sued and don’t have problem with the law.
          5. Have you read the policy yet? Look in the section under “self-martyrdom” offenses.
          6. You have already been warned. So you are banned for a week so you have time to consult a dictionary while reading the policy. ]

    • ankerawshark 24.4

      Kevin whoever you are your opinion sticks. surely this is a hate statement and should be banned from the Standard?

      • te reo putake 24.4.1

        I kinda think public embarrassment is a fitting punishment for Kevin, so kudos to all the Standardistas who have responded to him and made it clear how foolish his views are. However, he’s been given his one and only warning (above) so your wish may be granted sooner rather than later.

    • Chooky 24.5

      @Kevin…it is not as stupid as you would think…there have been instances of trampers being asphyxiated because they have left cookers on inside their tents to keep themselves warm …and they were not morons…in fact university educated…maybe she also was trying to keep the place warm

      ( a tragic accident …yes ! )

      …also I think Darwinian theory and natural selection is somewhat more complex than what you and little stoney Pebbles make out

    • JeevesPOnzi 24.6

      It wasn’t her car.

  25. man.u 25

    The comments were disgusting. Mickysavage’s partisan attack under the guise of outraged support are also disgusting.

    • Bill 25.1

      Care to expand on, or to explain that ‘partisan attack’ shite that you’re spouting by offering up an example or two?

      Thinking you won’t.

      See, if you’re going to troll…hmm, it kinda helps if you at least read the fucking post you’re focusing on.

    • North 25.2

      I recall the effete giggles of a certain prime minister on globally aired TV news as he instructed on the etiquette around the drawing of the ideal guest list for the ideal dinner party. The occasion…….the escape of a murderer/child rapist to South America. Heaps to giggle about in that, apparently.

      Certain prime minister and Pebbles are probably besties. Can’t blame the nasty wee slap’ of a girl I s’pose. It’s the company she keeps.

    • Kevin 25.3

      Par for the course here. If they can find anything to get at National, conservatives, right-wingers, and anybody that is not extreme left they’ll use it.

      • Bill 25.3.1

        Who are this ‘they’ you refer to Kevin?

        You do know (this applies to the other outraged souls on this thread) that the more you attempt to smear this post (its motivations), the more you make National Party supporters – or those who are reasonably assumed to be National Party voters – to be kinda dumb, misanthropic types…a bit like Ms Hooper.

        Ironic, innit?

  26. Weepus beard 26

    Good to see our resident right wing trolls fisiani and BM desperately trying to distance themselves from Pebbles Hooper.

    Good to see.

    • And kevin and man.u are trying to take up the slack.

    • RedLogix 26.2

      You’ll notice that pretty much their only concern was whether or not Pebbles is a member of the National Party or not.

      BM manages to describe it as ‘tactless’; which essentially means he can’t bring himself to condemn the comment, but does understand that it is the sort of thing that should not be said out loud in a public space.

      fisiani was outraged that it was all just baseless smear on the National Party. Again this means that he knows the comment is reprehensible and damaging, but he remains silent on that point.

      It is what they are failing to say which is most revealing here.

      • BM 26.2.1

        Why should I have to condemn the comment?

        I’m currently reading Ben Eltons book Blind Faith, quite fascinating the parallels.

        I recommend it.

        • RedLogix

          Sorry but YOU are the one who’s stuck his oar into this thread several times now, concerned to deflect any link to the National Party or minimise it as ‘tactless’.

          But when challenged to state YOUR position on what she said – which is the core issue here – you’ve chosen to remain silent.

          From this we draw our own conclusions.

  27. dv 28


    Oh look the poor wee dear is sorry.
    Especially after her editor got involved.

    May be she was worried about her pay check

    • RedLogix 28.1

      Some accountability is required here. She and her mother are both very media savvy and experienced. Both have been about more than a year or two.

      Inexperience and naivety I can forgive. Immaturity and folly I can get past.

      But the sheer vacuous lack of professionalism … no.

    • Bill 28.2

      This is her idea of apologising!?

      “The issue I regrettably tried to raise was about parental negligence and the precautions needed to ensure the safety of those who are unable to care for themselves”

      So she’s saying that the death of Cindy George and her children was the fault of Cindy George who was unable to care for either herself or her children?

      When she’s done digging this hole, I expect ‘The Herald’ will shove her in…

  28. man.u 29

    Bill. Why not just criticise the comments, which were disgusting. But in opening with “strong national party links” I think the attempt to associate this with a political persuasion are appalling.

    • How would you characterise her National Party links, man.u?

    • Bill 29.2

      You seriously reckon that suggesting someone has strong links to the National Party is both “disgusting” and “appalling”? Shit. Okay.

      That aside, she says herself that ‘I’m very conservative in terms of what I think when I watch the news’ and ‘Practically’ an Act Party voter.

      Questions 5 and 6.


      Her views on addicts is fairly misanthropic, stupid and in line with the political persuasion she aligns herself to btw. I’d guess she extends that ‘personal responsibility’ and ‘choice’ crap to a number of other topics, no?

      • man.u 29.2.1

        Yes I am. When it has nothing to do with the comments. Are you seriously suggesting it has some relevance?

        • Bill

          Wee done you for discovering the ‘reply’ function.

          • man.u

            Thanks. Appreciate it. Couldn’t find before on phone (still can’t see it) Now on tablet but not for long.

      • Virginia 29.2.2

        Look the ‘girl’ gets botox in her lips. What does that tell you about her: Shallow, insecure, vain, superficial, desperate etc…

        If she thinks she can fix her problems with botox, how is her distorted view on the world going to fix anything?

        She’s a stupid bitch.

        She has no case…………….She’s dumb. FULL STOP.

        [Two legs and four legs and gently pointing out that misogynistic insults ain’t going to down well around here… even if they are apparently being slung around by women.] – Bill

        • Virginia

          What I said wasn’t misogynistic. Where the hell did that come from?

          If a woman mutilates her face, by pumping botox into her lips, all in the name of beauty, just highlights how insecure she is about her looks.

          It also shows us how superficial she is, that she has to ‘improve’ her outer appearance to make her inner self feel better.

          The girl is naturally a very pretty girl. But the joker lips are a telltale sign to ones personality and mindset.

          Poor thing.

          This is a valid argument Bill.

          • Bill

            In had and have no problem with your argument/point of view. It’s the use of the epithet ‘bitch’ I was referring to.

          • Anne

            I believe Virginia made a valid point.

            That a young woman of 25 is using botox to artificially inflate her lips is a sad indictment of her mindset. I can see some reason for it when a woman reaches an age when her youthful looks are rapidly disappearing but 25? Pathetic.

            It is indeed a telltale sign of her inadequate personality.

            Edit: It is sometimes appropriate to call a woman a bitch Bill. I was on the receiving end of one 20 plus years ago and the word ‘bitch’ would certainly have been regarded by those who knew her at the time as probably an understatement.

            • BM

              Why are you so sour Anne?

              So much anger, you need to get it under control otherwise it will kill you.

              [Discuss the post and leave off the personal attacks – MS]

              • Anne

                That is such a pathetic response. I know what you’re trying to do.

                Its okay to call a man a bastard when they demonstrate in some way that is what they are – isn’t it BM. Therefore it is okay to call a woman a bitch when they do likewise. That is a simple fact. Nothing to do with anger as you well know.

              • Paul

                Clearly people recommending eugenics does nor make you feel sour.

          • BM

            How do you know she uses botox?, she may just have big lips or uses lipstick in a way to emphasize them.

        • I entirely support Bill’s moderation here. Yes, yes, I get it’s really easy to slam Pebbles Hooper with all the usual charges made against women – “shallow”, “vain”, “desperate”, “stupid bitch”.

          But what she said was abhorrent enough. There’s no need to bring her appearance into it, or imply that her appearance or cosmetic choices tell us anything about her character. These are classic – misogynist – ways of devaluing all women’s speech and opinions.

    • Weepus beard 29.3

      MS has only used the very same condition for painting a person as politically motivated as Glucina and her backers did when they framed Amanda Bailey as a left wing agitator from a facebook comment.

      That condition is that anything a person says politically can be used against them. By the looks of the earlier interview Pebbles Hooper and her family are clearly pro-John Key, anti-left, and by the look of it, anti-vulnerable people…

      .. It’s the kind of shrill lament from people like Pebbles, and Hosking, and Leighton Smith, and fisiani, and yourself who complain that the vulnerable and poor should be able to pull themselves out of their situation if only they’d pull their socks up because after all, we are all born the same.

      It always every man for himself with you lot, and she summed it up: “natural selection”, she said. It’s always personal responsibility over collective responsibility even though young Pebbles freely admits she still sponges off her parents and aims to continue to do so until she’s 50.

  29. man.u 30

    Why are you even talking of links? Why is this even been talked about? The comments were disgusting. Full stop.

    • dv 30.1

      She said she voted National

    • Bill 30.2

      @ man.u

      On the bottom right hand corner of the comment you’re replying to there’s a reply button. Use it or your inane comments may well be disappeared by a fucked off moderator – ie, me.

    • Weepus beard 30.3

      You and Pebbles Hooper, and fisiani, and Hosking are the same ideologically.

      You think the same and proof of that is your condemnation of the comments rather than the idea.

      The only difference is you didn’t tweet it.

  30. Heyegg 31

    Bill, the reply option is not there for android phones viewing in the mobile format.

    • Weepus beard 31.1


      He should either not post, or go to the full site on mobile where he will be able to use the reply button. That’s what I do if I feel the need to reply and there’s no button. I don’t just spam the flaming site up with whatever shit comes into my head like manu does, ffs!

      It’s all about personal responsibility after all. If I can do it, why can’t manu???

      • Heyegg 31.1.1

        Sure. I’m just pointing out a technical problem. Maybe manu doesn’t know about the desktop option.

        • Weepus beard

          No maybe about it. Manu is a dolt and I’m just applying the same criticisms of his inability to use this site as he and his kind apply to the less fortunate and the vulnerable when they struggle in life.

  31. North 32

    It gets worse. TV One News tonight……this, I say ill-bred, racist snob would have us believe that really all she was trying to do was to highlight the imperative of childrens’ safety. Oh what a ‘thinker’ and how public-minded of her !

    So in mitigation she parrots the words of some paid spinner and vaunts concern about “parental negligence”. Like that concern, even were it not a lie, is gonna make it all OK ??? Within days of this tragedy spit on the memory of the poor mother of those poor children for Christ’s Sake ! – ‘care for the community’ my arse. She and her very undertaking flip, vainglorious and cheap – starkly, cruelly inimical to the very concept !

    Pebbles Blooper (gratuitously to minimise the utter offensiveness of her), is a complete moral and social disaster. Unfit. As is her ‘save-my-own-arse-high-on-damage-control’ employer. Both are but the tip of the iceberg of the cackling, continental-kissing, ‘me me me’, Auckland Gutterati. Whose patron and shining light of course is ShonKey Python. For your ‘edification’ folks, I give you Planet Key. The Higher-Landed of the Bullshit Higher-Standard.

    • Weepus beard 32.1

      Well said North. I like the stream of consciousness feel about it.

      I’m not happy either about the platform and mandate this little oink is being given by her family’s heavyweight media chums to legitimise and minimise her, and her kind’s, twisted ideology in the face of severe criticism.

      She should be sacked from her role at the Herald for voicing her deeply held and hateful beliefs.

      • Chooky 32.1.1

        +100 North and Weepus beard…imo…her put down, patronising, uneducated comments about the poor dead Mother…. stem from racism

        …question is why?…what does this say about Pebbles and her families’ values…where does her family come from?…imo …probably not from New Zealand

        …is this where the Herald is now at?…sniping at the poor and misfortunate from right wing uneducated racists…who for some reason feel morally and genetically superior

  32. Apology; version 2:

    I want to express that I’m so sorry, I really don’t know what I was thinking. No one thinking straight would ever want to cause a family that was clearly going through intense pain and anguish any more distress. I’m gutted i was so callus and flippant, and I want to express my deepest apologies to friends and family of those involved.


    • RedLogix 33.1

      Looks like a grown-up finally gave her a talking to. Well if she’s sincere in this – it does look like a learning moment.

      Pebbles Hooper – the apology is only the first step in mending what you have done. The next step is in having the humility and integrity to put it right.

      Because in this modern world words are very cheap indeed. Actions are still what count.

      • dukeofurl 33.1.1

        First it was two fingers – natural selection

        then it was one wagging finger-the kids deserve to be safe

        Finally it was a full prostrate herself and repent- I was gutted ( Im thinking TV3 said dont come in Monday unless you do it)

  33. BM 34

    [RL: Deleted. I’m going to be generous and assume you are drinking.]

  34. North 35

    That’s right BM…….sort out your fall guy/gal very quickly and stick to it…….at all costs protect the Moral Detritus at the top. And who’s one silly slip of a girl anyway, lovely locks or not ?

    Can smell another ‘Osborne Moment’ coming up – at the least no more Parnell BBQs. Fuck it’s gonna be surreal hearing neglectful parent Denise The Strange slagging off ShonKey on Mora !

  35. I often hear how “the kids” are digital natives and so much more internet-savvy than those of us who grew up writing with a pen, but they seem just as prone as any old codger to imagining that if something was funny when you blathered it to your mates at the pub, it will be just as funny if you broadcast it to the entire planet. That’s a truly depressing level of stupidity, and also rather ironic that the perpetrator wants to talk suitable candidates for natural selection.

  36. Huginn 37

    Not new from the Herald, and not confined to its gossip columnists either.

    Heres a headline they came up with for the death of Samoan mother Folole Muliaga in 2007:

    Keep smokers and fatties out: doctors


  37. whateva next? 38

    Plenty of “Pebbles” out there, my concern is that hey have ANY air time in the public domain, AND are paid for it.

  38. M Scott 39

    The new-ish editor of the Herald was appointed to change the culture to expressions of “right thinking”. This is what we are seeing – very “right thinking” exponents expressing their “right” views. So every thing is all “right” with our world. Right?-

  39. papa tuanuku 40

    I felt this article was lacking in outrage. like, tut tut, but not outrage.

  40. SHG 41

    Summary: twenty-something makes a post to twitter, outrage ensues

  41. Jacket Potato 42

    Y’all needs ta chill. The truth hurts.

  42. Hmm, read the Wiki definition on Natural Selection people. Sadly her comments were more a projection of her mind state. According to Google search, nddk.nih.gov, MODY, maturity-onset diabetes of the young is an inherited disease. This is pretty depressing as she pointed out. Her mental instability and lack of empathy for the death of that unfortunate family is probably an indication of something more – for example Borderline personality disorder. She may have realized ( or not) that her life expectancy is relatively short and her chances of passing on her disorder to any children she may have a reasonably high. No excuse for her comments but she is 24 going on 15 with a death sentence. A reasonable lifespan if she manages her disease but some very nasty side effects from the life on diabetic medication. I dunno about natural selection but she is not doing her karma any favors with that sort of behaviour. As for the majority of comments on this post, “Let she/ he who is without sin, cast the first stone”.

    • As a Type 1 diabetic myself, I confirm that we are the last people who should declare the deaths of others to be natural selection in action. Without synthetic insulin and the syringes to deliver it, we have an expected lifespan measured in months. No ‘survival of the fittest’ lectures from a diabetic, unless they’re impervious to self-awareness (which I suspect partly explains Ms Hooper’s outburst).

      NB: no nasty side effects from the lifetime injecting insulin, but plenty of nasty consequences if you don’t make a good job of it.

      • Sacha 43.1.1

        Not the first thoughtless and nasty thing she has said, but this one could be related to her struggle to comprehend her own health, for sure.

      • RedLogix 43.1.2

        Maybe there’s a clue in her last apology .. “No one thinking straight would ever want …”

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