Bias only wrong when it’s right

January 16, 2018

Green Party candidate Hayley Holt is to join Jack Tame as a host on TV1’s Breakfast show.

Holt, 36, stood for the Green Party in John Key’s Helensville electorate in last September’s general election. At 17th on the party list, she missed out on a place in Parliament.

A former New Zealand snowboarder, she previously hosted alternative sports news show The Crowd Goes Wild on Prime and the breakfast radio show on More FM. . .

If this was a National candidate there would almost certainly have been an uproar from the left.

They petitioned against Mike Hosking hosting pre-elections debates because of his views but he’d never been a candidate.

The left won’t be campaigning against her appointment because in their eyes and ears political bias is only wrong when it’s right and it’s alright when it’s left.

She’s not the first former candidate to front such a show. Paul Henry who fronted breakfast shows on both TV1 and TV3 once stood for National.

Many years before that, Brian Edwards who had been a Labour candidate, was an interviewer on political programmes.

Bias doesn’t necessarily make people wrong for such work and if  they are politically biased it’s better to be out in the open than hidden.


1951 Wellington-Lyttelton yacht race TV1 tonight

May 20, 2015

The Peninsula Cruising Club’s Canterbury centennial race from Wellington to Lyttelton is the subject of Descent from Disaster, on TV1 at 8:30 this evening.

Only one of the 20 starters finished the race and two yachts, Argo and Husky, were lost with all their crew.

Another race entrant, Astral, was dismasted. A trawler, Tawera, took the yacht in tow but as the weather worsened the tow rope chafed through.

My father was one of the crew on the Caplin. A newspaper report in his journal records the account of the trawler skipper, George Brasell:

A newspaper report in Dad’s journal records the account of the trawler skipper, George Brasell:

“Astral was carrying a light and all we could do was to stand by alongside her and keep her in view. This was a tremendous task as it was blowing a full gale and a light was only visible when she topped the seas. My crew were tried to their utmost that night and did a wonderful job i n trying to keep the Astral in sight. Visibility was very bad. We only picked up land once after leaving Lyttelton.

“About midnight on Friday the crew of the Astral signalled us to put oil on the water. We did as requested until daylight when we started to take the crew off by means of a line dragging each member through the water. Luckily the rescue was carried out successfully. I felt proud of my crew. The rescue was carried out at the height of the gale. . . “

 I posted on the race on its anniversary. Several people with memories of it or connections to it left comments.


Paul Henry 1

April 7, 2015

Paul Henry’s new programme won the battle of the breakfast shows in our house this morning.

But then we’d been watching TV3’s breakfast programme much more than TV1’s anyway.

Henry’s show is a multi-media one.

Radio, live streaming and TV are very different media. But I got all I needed to know listening with my eyes shut when my farmer turned the television on at 6am while I was still dozing.


Cunliffe yeah-nah on Mana

August 5, 2014

Last week David Cunliffe refused to rule out working with Internet Mana.

Last night TV3 reported the Labour Party had told Te Tai Tokerau candidate Kelvin Davis to shut down a website aimed at his rival for the seat, sitting MP and Mana leader Hone Harawira.

But this morning Cunliffe told TV1’s Breakfast: (@ 2:28)

“. . . We’ve ruled out working with Mana in government  as well. I’ve said yesterday, I’ve said before Mana will not be part of a government I lead fullstop.”

Has he or has he not ruled out Mana?

If he has why is Davis being told to pull his head in – and his website off-line – and why isn’t Labour supporting its candidate in Te Tai Tokerau?

A strong campaign there would unseat Harawira and Mana would go with him in spite of the millions of dollars Kim Dotcom is throwing at it.

While Labour is yeah-nahing about whether or not it will work with Mana and whether or not it wants to win the seat, Davis is in no doubt.

He posted on Facebook last night:

I was on 3 News tonight because my campaign team had a look at a proposed website designed to take down Kim Dotcom and stop him from buying the seat of Te Tai Tokerau with his $3million dollars.
We explored this concept, debated it, then along with the Labour Party hierarchy decided it wasn’t in line with our Vote Positive messages and ditched it.
It was all about Kim Dotcom.
This is the same Kim Dotcom who donated $50,000 to far-right wing disgraced politician John Banks.
This is the same Kim Dotcom who said the police turning up at his front door was as bad as the suffering Maori have endured for close to two centuries.
This is the same Kim Dotcom had nothing to do with Maori until he found a way to take advantage of some to try to keep himself out of an American jail.
This is the same Kim Dotcom who’s garage is bigger and flasher than 99% of homes in Te Tai Tokerau, and still cries ‘poor me’.
This is the same Kim Dotcom, who if he really cared about the people of Te Tai Tokerau, would have got out with all the Labour volunteers after the floods and storms and distributed food packages to those who needed them instead of staying tucked up in the mansion.
This is the same Kim Dotcom who turned up to hui up north in a limousine while kaumatua and kuia rode in a rattly bus.
This is the same Kim Dotcom whose interference in Te Tai Tokerau politics was described as a disgrace to over 300 people at the Ngati Hine hearings in Pipiwai yesterday.
I make no apologies about looking at a website that asked the public to donate $5, $10 or whatever they wish to koha, to bring down a fake.
I’m just an ordinary Maori living up north trying to stop the biggest con in New Zealand’s political history from being pulled against my whanau, my hapu, my iwi.
I make no apologies if there’s another Maori politician in the north feeling pretty sensitive about all the criticism he’s copping from hapu throughout Te Tai Tokerau because of the con job.
I’m prepared to cop the criticism from him because it’s just the price a person pays when he stands up for his people and his principles.

Davis is quite sure he wants to win the seat, and on current polling he’d have to if he wants a seat in parliament because his list placing isn’t good enough win a seat that way.

But it’s difficult to know whether his leader and his party are as keen.

The only thing we can be sure about  is that Labour is unsure.

It’s as confused and divided about this as it is about its campaign, its direction and its leader.


Why save what few watch?

May 22, 2012

Grey Power has added its voice to the individuals and groups calling on the government to save the free-to-air channel TV7.

There is a case for public broadcasting but TV1, 2 and 7 are poor models. The first two are indistinguishable from other commercial channels and TV7 has such a tiny number of viewers.

Maori TV is a better model, but it rarely attracts much of an audience either.

Rather than wasting time and energy trying to save a channel hardly anyone watches, people should be trying to find ways to get the best of the channel’s programmes on TV1 where they’d have a better chance of attracting a greater audience.


Strong and stable or shaky stack?

November 24, 2011

Last night’s TV1 leaders’ debate confirmed that Phil Goff is an able and experienced politician who ought to know better than to promote policies which will increase debt, hamper growth and costs jobs.

It also confirmed that John Key is an able politician and his real world experience is more than a match for Goff’s parliamentary longevity. Unlike Goff he leads a party with a plan to reduce debt and encourage growth and the jobs which will come from that.

In announcing National’s action plan should it lead the next government, Key said:

We will get straight back to work on making our economy stronger, by balancing the books, repaying debt, and creating more jobs.

The plan outlines the next critical actions a National-led Government  will take in several important areas – debt and the economy, welfare,  law and order, education, health, and rebuilding Canterbury.

Each of these areas is vitally important to the future of New Zealand,  but none more so than getting back into surplus and reducing New  Zealand’s debt. But to carry out this plan, we need a strong, stable National-led Government.

Although the polls suggest that a National win is a near certainty, it isn’t.

. . . the reality is that Saturday is the only poll that counts, and the result will be much closer than some people think.

Under MMP, you can stack up the parties in all sorts of combinations  and the potential for a Labour Party-led stack of minor parties is very  real. And the more complex the stack of parties, the more expensive it will be.

Two things are certain. Firstly, that a Labour-led stack will lead to  more debt – around $21 billion over four years collectively so far. 

Secondly, it will stack up more costs and burdens on business – Labour  has 10 big extra costs of their own – and that means fewer jobs for New  Zealanders. New Zealand can’t afford that recipe.  

A strong, stable National-led government or the shakey stack of Labour, Green Party, Maori Party, New Zealand First and Mana?

The choice is clear. If we don’t want to join the European PIGS – Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain, we need strong and stable government focussed on cutting debt and increasing growth, not  a shakey stack competing with each other to get their expensive and economically irresponsible policies implemented.

The action plan is here.


Let the debaters debate

November 4, 2011

The first TV1 debate between John Key and Phil Goff was a disappointment.

There was too much happening with not just the speakers and chair but political commentators giving their views and questions from journalists in the studio and the public via video.

It was neither good entertainment nor good information.

Wednesday’s debate in Christchurch, organised by The Press, was much better. The two party leaders were able to address the audience and respond to each other with few interruptions.

Last night Jim Hopkins chaired the Queenstown Great Debate between finance spokesmen (they were all men) for National, Act, Labour, the Maori and Green Parties.

Like the Press debate, speakers were given the opportunity to express their views with little intervention from the chair.

It was broadcast live on Radio Live. You can listen to opening comments  here, the first hour here, the debate on asset sales here and the second hour here.

TV1 will have another debate between the National and Labour Party leaders.

They should learn from the mistakes they made with the first one and the good example of these other two debates: keep it simple and let the debaters debate.


%d bloggers like this: