Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Why we thought what we thought

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  • Sacha, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    legislation to make finance company directors retrospectively accountable

    There already is. The problem seems to be getting sufficient evidence to prosecute them.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Despite desperate spinning by Boag and other apologists that Dirty Politics is just a fantasy, the core implication of the SFO email is pretty straightforward for Collins.

    Collins was Minister of Justice. As part of her role, she was the Minister in charge of the SFO. And in that role, she had a conversation with a blogger who informed her that he was about to undertake a campaign to torpedo the head of the SFO. Rather than telling the blogger that such a course of action is entirely inappropriate, she instead gives him a green light to go for it. After all, when you tell someone that you’ll pass their material on to the State Services Commissioner, and you don’t tell them to then pull their head in, that’s a green light.

    So if Slater wasn’t lying in his email, that’s the best case for Collins, and that, to my mind, is resignation material on its own. And if the true situation is less than best case? Well, Collins won’t ever be returning as a Minister.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Hear Boag spinning like a top and Hooten having a real go at her on Radio Live (embedded audio clip).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    There are any number of stories in the past five years that we might now peel back and inspect in this light, and ask why we thought we what thought about those stories.

    I hope something comes to light about the setting up of MP Darren Hughes. It was very fishy at the time - including an unnamed person reporting a naked man running through Hataitai in the early hours of the morning. The effect was the forced resignation of one of the most popular Labour MPs and the freeing up of a provincial seat.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3203 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to Trevor Nicholls,

    We need a formal government Inquiry to unravel this horrifying mess, and punish those responsible.

    Of course only a government that didn’t need such an inquiry would be prepared to hold one.

    Fortunately, we can elect a different one.

    And Judith Collins has actually said she wants an Inquiry. To clear her name.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Lilith __,

    She wants a narrow, tame inquiry like the one McCully set up into the Malaysian diplomat. The PM will oblige her tomorrow.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Ethan Tucker, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    At the time of his resignation in 2011 Darren Hughes was a list MP.

    Wellington • Since Apr 2008 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Caleb D'Anvers, in reply to A C Young,

    If there is one thing that comes out of this that is positive I am hoping that no journalist will take anything that Cameron Slater says at face value.

    Well, you'd hope so. But, if we're talking about the integrity and intellectual firepower of the NZ mass media, tidbits like this one (RTd on Twitter last night by RB) don't inspire much confidence:

    @PamelaStirling: .@johnkeypm looks better than he has all campaign. He's back.

    As someone else put it on Twitter, "@citizen_parable: Wow. Colours. Mast. Nailed. Thanks for the clarification." There's a story to be told about the Listener's infiltration by the Right under Stirling, just as there is one to be told about the similar ideological compromise of RNZ under certain producers. I hope one day we get to hear those stories.

    London SE16 • Since Mar 2008 • 482 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to Sacha,

    She wants a narrow, tame inquiry like the one McCully set up into the Malaysian diplomat. The PM will oblige her tomorrow.

    Which will raise more questions than it can answer.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • edje,

    Seems fairly straightforward.
    John Key knows, and is complicit; or knows nothing, and is a sap.

    auckland • Since Aug 2014 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to A C Young,

    If there is one thing that comes out of this that is positive I am hoping that no journalist will take anything that Cameron Slater says at face value.

    I'd like to think no journalist takes anyone at face value -- not because they glibly assume everyone lies, but because it's quite reasonable to assume nobody ever talks to the media without some object in view.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • A C Young, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I’d like to think no journalist takes anyone at face value – not because they glibly assume everyone lies, but because it’s quite reasonable to assume nobody ever talks to the media without some object in view.

    I would argue that there is a difference between taking into account someone's stated ideological views and knowing that someone may be getting paid by an unknown party to push a viewpoint.

    I mean seriously, at this point nobody should be able to accept any piece from Slater without asking who is paying him.

    Wellington • Since Feb 2011 • 35 posts Report Reply

  • Euan Mason,

    It seems very likely that JK approved of Ede's little plots with Slater, and understood that he was the good cop to Slater's bad cop. I am therefore astounded that Key released the email that finally undid JC. Maybe the rumblings of her impatient Prime Ministerial ambitions influenced this?

    Canterbury • Since Jul 2008 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Sue,

    I'm just wondering when RadioNZ starts to consider who it pays for opinions on shows like the panel and nine to noon.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 527 posts Report Reply

  • Euan Mason,

    What happens next will be a test of our democracy.

    Canterbury • Since Jul 2008 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Key took action against Collins so he could say this sort of tosh:

    Prime Minister John Key has tried to distance himself from claims Mark Hotchin was paying bloggers to undermine the Serious Fraud Office, saying he does not know about the arrangement and it is not a matter for the National Party.
    ...
    Mr Key said it was nothing to do with the Government beyond Ms Collin's possible involvement which would be subject to an inquiry. She was the minister in charge of the SFO at the time.

    Mr Key said Labour leader David Cunliffe's statements that it amounted to potential corruption were "trying to create a political smear for his own benefit".

    The PM even gets to utter the word "Accountability" and have the Herald obediently use it as their headline.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    However, more OIA shennanigans emerge:

    Judith Collins' office processed an Official Information Act request in just two days to release an email embarrassing then Serious Fraud Office head Adam Feeley in 2011.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Dismal Soyanz,

    Also from the Herald

    Mr Key initially said he had been summoned by Inspector-General Cheryl Gwyn but his office later said several of his staff had been asked to appear, but not Mr Key himself.

    So his office but not him, but when he talks about himself does he mean himself himself or the PM's Office himself? Confused? You will be ...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2010 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • simon g, in reply to Euan Mason,

    What happens next will be a test of our democracy.

    I'd amend that to: "What happens eventually will be a test of our democracy".

    There are two very different timetables: the political, and the judicial (including quasi-judicial inquiries). Sadly, horse-race journalism is so entrenched that it's almost obligatory for our media to pretend that the story ends on September 20. It won't.

    Pollsters asking voters every five minutes "Well, have you changed your mind yet? Well, have you?" doesn't help. Human nature doesn't work like that.

    It's entirely possible (even probable) that Key will be PM after election day, and assorted commentators will declare 'He got away with it" or "He's been vindicated", depending on their leanings.

    To repeat an earlier post: Nixon's vote, over 60%. After Watergate. But before the consequences.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1324 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to John McFadgen,

    Um "Gord" - may have been a bit hasty - mucosal damage produced by the abnormal reflux of gastric contents into the oesophagus - sounds about right.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Listening to Hooton on Morning Report,
    the man is delusional...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7892 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace, in reply to Ethan Tucker,

    Yes but he was well placed to regain that seat later that year, and was probably the only Labour candidate who could. He had also been involved in advocacy for tightening up drink driving rules. Enough to raise suspicions now about the sources for that whole story. No witnesses were ever named.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3203 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe,

    Sir Geoffrey Palmer says on NatRad that a Royal Commission is justified and that Key should consult Cunliffe as it is within the 90-day caretaker period. Cabinet Manual para 6.9.

    He also says looking at the scope of the caretaker government conventions and rules is warranted. In Australia such a unilateral inquiry could not happen during the election period.

    Hooton said similar earlier.

    BTW, Key appeared to slip up on Morning Report and detail some of his dispute with the Dirty Politics book. But he hasn't read it, has he? (That core contempt for political difference being permissible has astounded me, especially that he has been allowed by journalists to continue that line.)

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2896 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Hebe,

    He made the same slip on Saturday. Guess he'd just claim his office has read it.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • simon g, in reply to Hebe,

    Key appeared to slip up on Morning Report and detail some of his dispute with the Dirty Politics book. But he hasn't read it, has he?

    Yes, he's said in several interviews: "If you go and have a look at the book ...". Still waiting for an interviewer to pick him up on it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1324 posts Report Reply

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