OnPoint by Keith Ng

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OnPoint: Did you know we're in a recession?

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  • Lyndon Hood,

    Having watched the government and opposition arguing about statisitics it doesn't seem to make much difference, just lends itself to more he said/she said ...

    Mind you, perhaps if some party could gain a reputation for not doing it themselves it might help.

    As for media, if you take time to call one guy out when they go gaga you have to do everyone. And the next best option is not reporting it, which isn't much of a goer either.

    Still, I'm sure when Keith is made God-King we'll be able to sort something out.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1115 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    is it such a bad thing if we're slowly (and painfully) getting off the debt-fuelled consumption crack?

    Agreed. The issue though is has the patient stopped using because of a conscious life-style choice for the better

    OR

    did they simply die?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    Which would make the job of the mainstream media to spread misinformation and spin. Thanks for playing The End of Civil Discourse.

    I guess you'd prefer some variation on FOX News where there is no attempt at impartial coverage and the news is just editorial content.

    As for media, if you take time to call one guy out when they go gaga you have to do everyone. And the next best option is not reporting it, which isn't much of a goer either.

    Exactly. 'The media' can't decide they're not going to report the Finance Minister's statements about the economy, and if the statements are questionable then our whole political system is set up so that the opposition can critique them. We have a really terrible opposition, which is the real problem here.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    No, I'd expect journalists to fisk politicians on either side, as impartially as they can, and for reporting in general to err on the side of scepticism for politicians' utterances. It's not unheard of, you know, and how you get to argue that the sole alternative to being a mouthpiece is being Fox News is beyond me.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    And there was a time when wage freezes were directly imposed by the state, as in Muldoon's and Nixon's day. Now, Fear, Uncertainty & Doubt (TM) achieves the same purpose.

    A lot of workers receive a benefit as a top-up to their income, but not many seem to defferentiate between the outrightly unemployed and the working poor; they're often tarred with the same brush.

    Keith:

    Not consuming because you've been fired doesn't really help our debt situation.

    I forget who said it, but a certain head of state reputedly said, "People with full bellies don't make revolutions."

    Is anyone else here thinking, "Ministry of Plenty"?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5434 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    I forget who said it, but a certain head of state reputedly said, "People with full bellies don't make revolutions."

    Variously attributed to this fine gentleman or this one. Of course, the latter may well have been parrotting the former.

    [edit: What happened to my Preview button?! RUSSELL!?]

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg,

    No, I'd expect journalists to fisk politicians on either side, as impartially as they can, and for reporting in general to err on the side of scepticism for politicians' utterances.

    True dat. I'm a bit sick of hearing about the govenments generous offer to the teachers (that the greedy sods turned down). I expect to hear that from the government, but when media seems to repeat the generous part I wonder what the hey is going on.

    Stockholm • Since Jul 2009 • 802 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    No, I'd expect journalists to fisk politicians on either side, as impartially as they can, and for reporting in general to err on the side of scepticism for politicians' utterances.

    You might expect journalists to do that but you're going to be perptually disappointed because that's not their job. There are plenty of columnists and analysts around performing that role - go read them.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Sam F,

    is it such a bad thing if we're slowly (and painfully) getting off the debt-fuelled consumption crack?

    Agreed. The issue though is has the patient stopped using because of a conscious life-style choice for the better

    OR

    did they simply die?

    That was pretty damn good.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1609 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    On the topic of teachers' pay, I do wonder if they'd settle for the extra manglement units and hard caps on class sizes along with a minor pay increase. The impression I'm getting is that most of their gripe relates to class sizes and NCEA workload rather than rates of pay.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    You might expect journalists to do that but you're going to be perptually disappointed because that's not their job.

    I'd be genuinely interested to know if schools in New Zealand teach your version of journalism. That would explain a bit.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    Key was just holding up the real after tax wage graph in Parliament.

    Oh, now he's talking about inflation.

    Why do they never listen?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1115 posts Report Reply

  • FletcherB,

    You might expect journalists to do that but you're going to be perptually disappointed because that's not their job.

    Hmm.... So, then I assume you're not personally offended by the bloggers that have started using the term "repeater" instead of reporter?

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 893 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    I'd be genuinely interested to know if schools in New Zealand teach your version of journalism. That would explain a bit.

    I think you'll find they do, because impartial, balanced and objective reporting is what journalism is, or at least what it is supposed to aspire to. There are many problems with modern journalism, but the fact that journalists (generally) don't act like bloggers and don't 'fisk' events, try to rewrite the news to flatter someone's value system or advance their own political preferences isn't something I'd like to see change - although things are (unfortunately) moving in this direction.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    OPINIONS DIFFER ON SHAPE OF EARTH

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I think you'll find they do, because impartial, balanced and objective reporting is what journalism is, or at least what it is supposed to aspire to.

    "Goodnight, and good luck."

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    OPINIONS DIFFER ON SHAPE OF EARTH

    A Wellington man has claimed that the Earth is torus shaped, provoking sharp disagreement from scientists who point to the overwhelming evidence in favor of the spherical earth model. The man advancing the torus argument has no qualifications and could produce no evidence supporting his claims.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I think you'll find they do, because impartial, balanced and objective reporting is what journalism is, or at least what it is supposed to aspire to.

    I think there's a "speaking truth to power" clause somewhere there too.

    I honestly don't think that misleading information is conveyed solely out of a desire for objectivity. Keith has frequently analysed news stories that are full of bad data because the journalist's work is poor, or simply to beat up an angle.

    And just declaring yourself "objective" and "balanced" hardly fixes it. What does that actually mean? That you give equal time to bad arguments, or refrain from noting that the claims you report aren't supportable on the facts?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22839 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    The impression I'm getting is that most of their gripe relates to class sizes and NCEA workload rather than rates of pay.

    And we haven't discussed disruptive pupils yet either. Today's teachers are forced to double as social workers and wardens, and one can understand why they're brassed off.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5434 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Danyl, fine to report differences of opinion but lies about fact should be pointed out as such. That's what journalism used to be before the free market version you're talking about took hold. "Objectivity" doesn't mean giving equal space to flat earthers.

    Oh and multiple snaps.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19729 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    A Wellington man has claimed that the Earth is torus shaped, provoking sharp disagreement from scientists who point to the overwhelming evidence in favor of the spherical earth model. The man advancing the torus argument has no qualifications and could produce no evidence supporting his claims.

    The man will appear with A. Scientist on Close Up tonight, where we hope to get to the bottom of the matter.

    Or, to use a real-life example: both Close Up and 60 Minutes last year ran heartbreaking stories on NZ families seeking miracle stem cell therapy cures, even though they ought to have known (or actually did know) that the therapy was bogus and the practitioner had been censured by his own professional body -- because that made for a better story.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22839 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Danyl, adding the additional information that the original claimant has no evidence (really? how did you make that judgment?), consulting experts and contrasting their authority with the claimant's seems awfully like fact-checking to me. You're clinging to the form of being disinterested, but the content is nonetheless contradictory of the original claim.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • HORansome,

    Meanwhile, philosophers continue to assert that the "What shape is the Earth?" is meaningless because no one has definitively proved it exists and, that even if it does, whether we live there.

    Tāmaki Makaurau • Since Sep 2008 • 441 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    Danyl, fine to report differences of opinion but lies about fact should be pointed out as such. That's what journalism used to be before the free market version you're talking about took hold. "Objectivity" doesn't mean giving equal space to flat earthers.

    But English isn't flat out lying - he's bullshitting. Inflation IS low. Real after tax wages ARE higher. Kieth does a fine job of explaining why he feels those are not valid measures and that the government is spinning for Africa, and I agree with him - but that's a job for a commentator/analyst, not a news reporter.

    The man will appear with A. Scientist on Close Up tonight, where we hope to get to the bottom of the matter.

    The fact that many so-called news shows are actually lcd infotainment masquerading as journalism is a genuine problem with the industry, I'm not gonna disagree with you there.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    Danyl, adding the additional information that the original claimant has no evidence (really? how did you make that judgment?), consulting experts and contrasting their authority with the claimant's seems awfully like fact-checking to me. You're clinging to the form of being disinterested, but the content is nonetheless contradictory of the original claim.

    Let's try it your way. The PAS model of journalism could look like this:

    Man lies about shape of Earth, falsely claim Earth is torus shaped contrary to overwhelming evidence in favor of spherical model.

    but it could also just as easily look like this:

    Scientists lie about shape of Earth, falsely claim Earth is spherical contrary to overwhelming evidence of torus model.

    Which is why I'm happier for them to stick to to balanced reporting, rather than 'fisking'.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

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