Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Dirty Politics

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  • Neil, in reply to Kumara Republic,

    And yes, let’s keep JLR’s mental health issues separate from his role in all this.

    Ross made his supposed mental health issues public. He’s used it as defense for his predatory behaviour.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • Neil,

    At present Ross and his supporters are releasing selective information to support his agenda of playing the victim.

    The police can invoke the mental health act to detain and have someone assessed. That does not mean that that person if admitted is admitted under the act.

    And if they are admitted then it is for a period of assessment during which they may or may not be diagnosed with a mental illness.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • Neil,

    He’s currently occupying a bed that could be used for someone who is actually in need of those resources. Someone most likely not a predatory white male with money.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov, in reply to Neil,

    I’ve no idea whether you have a reliable source or whether what you’re dolling out here is unsubstantiated ableism but I’m deeply troubled at your efforts to erase Jami-Lee Matenga Ross’s whakapapa.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • WH,

    While it can be hard to maintain the proper perspective amid the flurries of the news cycle, I think Chris Trotter and Bryan Gould are right to be concerned.

    I hope a senior member of the legal profession – a senior partner or barrister – will offer the Ross family pro bono assistance and ensure that everything about Mr Ross’ detention is entirely proper.

    Since Nov 2006 • 797 posts Report Reply

  • simon g, in reply to simon g,

    Thank goodness nobody reads my comments ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1330 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov, in reply to simon g,

    I saw that, but you know i’m far too polite and mostly wrong so…

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • Neil,

    While supposedly unwell Ross organises Lusk or Slater to release material hoping to undermine the integrity of the women he harassed and abused.

    My guess is there’s a lot more he’s done that we haven’t heard about yet.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Neil,

    You may be mis-reading who is organising who.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Neil, in reply to Sacha,

    Quite possible.

    There’s been considerable thought given to this strategy of misusing the mental health system to portray Ross as a victim and allow him to continue his odious behaviour.

    Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental illness just as Bipolar Affective Disorder is. But the treatment is considerably different and the relation between the disorder and culpability and responsibility for ones actions can also be considerably different.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    You’ve indicated you have some expertise in this area Neil, yet without qualifying that, your responses appear to be very much in keeping with the populist ableist Trump era pastime of armchair diagnosis, which experts maintain – beyond a clinical setting is an "amateur error" – in some posts you’ve claimed he’s categorically “not unwell” in others you’ve maintained he suffers from NPD – a diagnosis contingent on:

    behaviors also must cause clinically significant distress or impairment.

    Further to that I’m having difficulty consolidating the absolutist idea that there is no way a political party could influence these processes:

    Secondly, there is no way a political party could influence that process. That allegation is a very nasty and ignorant smear against health professionals and does a great disservice to mental health.

    while also maintaining that considerable thought has gone into (one might assume successfully) influencing this process:

    There’s been considerable thought given to this strategy of misusing the mental health system to portray Ross as a victim and allow him to continue his odious behaviour.

    While maintaining that Ross has full agency – which may or may not be the case – your contribuions to this thread have at almost ever point retained an uneven singular focus on Ross himself to the point of distraction from the role the National Party have (by their own admission) played at seemingly every step of the way in faciliating the current state of affairs. Could I ask you to expand on this a little further?

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to mark taslov,

    Mark, I'm glad you raised the question of his agency. I've discussed it in various comments on The Standard, often drawing fire from those who have a single issue focus on privacy law. As a group, such people are hot on using the law to deny the right of free speech of others (such as myself) who feel it is vital to frame things in an holistic view rather than their reductionist perspective. One even denied that he's a whistleblower!

    So I'd be interested to hear your take on this dichotomy. As a whistleblower, being taken by state agents into a situation of total control (without his cellphone according to friends and we still haven't been informed if the state confiscated that) you'd feel your agency had been totally eliminated, eh?

    So is this really going to be a relief for him, such disempowerment? I doubt it. And if his lawyer is gagged by privacy law (haven't heard a whimper out of him) it's hardly surprising that many of us see Ross as the victim of totalitarianism. Does privacy law really trump both civil rights and our whistleblower law?? I'd love to see our Supreme Court decide against that!

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 292 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    Certain operators within the National Party have a history of accepting, enabling, and using such "odious behaviours" for their own ends. I seem to recall that a few years ago we were discussing National's use of Cameron Slater in similar terms.
    At this stage it's pointless to speculate about how far such behaviours are the product of some pathology or other; it is more important that National clarify what if anything it will do to change its relationship to such behaviours. If National has been directly involved in sectioning Ross, primarily to silence him, that is not exactly the sort of change we might hope for.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1940 posts Report Reply

  • Neil, in reply to linger,

    If National has been directly involved in sectioning Ross, primarily to silence him, that is not exactly the sort of change we might hope for.

    It’s not possible, the Mental Health Act does not work that way. People spreading those rumours are doing mental health a huge disservice.

    We also don’t know if he was placed under the mental health act or not. All we have is selective bits of information provided by Ross’ “friends” to suit his agenda.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank,

    What we need is a Supreme Court decision that privacy law cannot be used to eliminate civil rights and defeat the whistle-blower law. The authorities can only get away with it as long as everyone lets them. Collusion with the National Party is obvious to anyone who can read the pattern, but just perception until privacy is no longer able to be used to eliminate freedom of speech, and we can get the facts.

    Word on the street (as it were) is that Mitchell called the cops to initiate the sectioning. He had been given the task of operating as minder for Ross earlier. Slater wrote on his blog that it was a National MP who called them in. Inasmuch as Mitchell, Collins and Ross have all been clients of Lusk, one would expect Slater to get the inside info on stuff like this. An interesting nexus.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 292 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    So I’d be interested to hear your take on this dichotomy. As a whistleblower, being taken by state agents into a situation of total control (without his cellphone according to friends and we still haven’t been informed if the state confiscated that) you’d feel your agency had been totally eliminated, eh?

    I was just talking to my psychologist about the physical and mental anxiety I’d experienced over the weekend due to the nature of the reporting of the incident. Noting that I lived in the PRC for about 1/3 of my life where such disappearings are commonplace and that my understanding of ’agency’ diverges from the norm I may not be best placed to canvas that. Suffice to say I’m side-eyeing anyone raising their hand for the “nothing to see here” brigade.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • izogi,

    Nicky Hager writes about all of this on The Spinoff this morning.

    Total destruction is clearly what JLR was out for last week. It is the mentality of the Judith Collins faction of the National Party. Back in 2011, Slater passed on Collins’ message to Lusk, who replied: “That’s why I am keen to have her as leader, our side will learn to fight properly.” Slater added: “And fight hard”.

    I think this is still true. I think that the attacks on Bridges, aided by Lusk and Slater, are about making Collins the leader of the National Party. She was uncharacteristically quiet during the last week of destabilisation of Bridges. Collins has repeatedly said she has had nothing to do with Ross’s behaviour. But she is very keen on becoming leader. If she becomes leader in the coming months, based in part on the crisis brewed in recent weeks, it will be a victory for dirty politics.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • Neil, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    Word on the street (as it were) is that Mitchell called the cops to initiate the sectioning.

    Which part of the Mental Health Act was used?

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • simon g, in reply to izogi,

    “She’ll no doubt want to root me tomorrow. I’ll have to take one for the team to get the details out of her.”

    Jordan Williams, talking about a source. A human being.

    How long are the NZ media going to continue being complicit in this? Every time they give us "news" from the "Taxpayers' Union", and pretend that Williams is a legitimate, disinterested contributor on a "panel", they enable and encourage his vile behaviour.

    This fails any basic test of ethics. Editors and broadcasters know that. They can read.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1330 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to Neil,

    Haven't seen that reported yet. The authorities have been suspiciously quiet, seeming to be pursuing a strategy of denying public access to as many relevant facts as possible. Understandable, since it's the only way to make a cover-up successful. Privacy law is proving to be an extremely useful tool to cover up political wrongdoing.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 292 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to mark taslov,

    I can empathise somewhat, having been brought up via victimhood (chronic thrashings). Identifying with other victims comes easily to me but I realise it's all relative to one's social niche so we can't really generalise.

    Hager's comment only goes so far. Seemed too shallow an analysis. Ross has formed a public identity as whistleblower, and Hager fails to factor that in. The political psychology of that new identity derives from being the sole player vs a team of 55 in the Nat caucus. The power imbalance ramps up his speaking truth to power to the tipping point of his breakdown. The pressure is vastly higher than for other politicians.

    Then he gets taken into isolation by agents of the state. Even after release, still no direct evidence yet that he has regained agency. We don't know why he no longer had his cellphone. Not a peep out of his lawyer. All extremely suspicious.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 292 posts Report Reply

  • Neil, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    Haven’t seen that reported yet.

    So word on the street isn’t giving those details? How odd. Easy enough to produce the 8(a).

    The act is available on line to check if there is any part of the act that could possibly be used to implement what word on the street claims. So far I’ve seen no one point to anything in the Act that could allow this to happen.

    It present it’s word on the street vs mental health law.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to Neil,

    True, and as long as privacy law continues to prevent mental health authorities from informing the public on precisely how the whistleblower had his liberty removed against his will, folks will speculate. Oh wait, the Nats could alway issue an official denial that any of their MPs were involved. Yeah, right...

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 292 posts Report Reply

  • Neil, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    Ross could release the records of his assessment and admission which would document details of any use of the act.

    He’s the one using privacy to prevent that information becoming public.

    Meanwhile he releases private information to undermine the women he abused.

    So far the very small amount of information made public has been from Slater – a compulsive liar.

    What concerns me the most is how the actions of Ross and Slater are giving a misleading picture of how acute mental health services work and there are people who should know better being taken for a ride.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • Neil,

    Regarding access to cellphones in acute inpatient units, this is an often fraught issue. On the one hand peoples’ lives now can revolve around cellphones – socially, financially etc. On the other hand for someone unwell use of a cellphone could be damaging in terms of their reputation and finances.

    Making poor financial decisions via internet banking, posting inappropriate pictures on social media, saying horrible things about people – these are things that have happened and that people come to deeply regret when they get well.

    So staff, having a duty of care, have to make often difficult judgement calls regarding such access.

    Irrespective of access to cellphones though, patients are entitled to visitors and to use the hospital phone system. They also have a right to see independent lawyers to act on their behalf and to file a S16 to have a judge review there mental health act status if indeed they are under the act.

    Since Nov 2016 • 380 posts Report Reply

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