Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Narcissists and bullies

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  • nzlemming,

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2937 posts Report

  • Miche Campbell, in reply to Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    Yet we don’t expect all medical professionals to start out as orderlies or nurses.

    Frankly I think it would make for better doctors if all of them had to spend a year doing a nurse's duties.

    But that's all I have to say on this particular derail. We now return you to your regularly-scheduled programming.

    Dunedin • Since Feb 2011 • 79 posts Report

  • Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    Well yes, can't say but I agree with you there Miche, though I don't think it entirely undermines the original point.

    Also, ditto to what nzlemming said to Matthew Hooton. And I read that "he said he was going to make a scene" line as probably untrue or a misquote, and a pathetic attempt to trivialise what you'd said, after the fact.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 585 posts Report

  • James Francis, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    So here’s what I want.

    I want the police in west Auckland investigated so thoroughly their skin turns red and they can’t sit for month. I’m sorry for those who will be put through the mill unfairly that is the price you pay for allowing your colleagues to be scum.

    I want the lying scum policepersons found and identified and thrown in jail for the harm they have allowed to occur. They should lose their jobs but they should also be criminally liable (and yes I know they are not). They do have to be ejected from the police force.

    Thank you, Bart. You've expressed better than I can the anger that I'm feeling.

    What I want, what I really, really want is for somebody in the Police - the Commissioner, the District Commander, somebody - to speak honestly, to show some fucking emotion and to stop hiding behind weaselly, soothing, sanitised Comms Adviser pap.

    What I want is for the Police to take at least some action against the men (and I use the term loosely) that started all this. What they have done to those young women is criminal. Whether it meets a strict legal definition or not of a crime, what they have done is criminal and unconscionable and they shouldn't be able to walk away from it.

    And what I really want - and I have no idea how it could be done but it must be possible - is for somebody to talk to those girls, those young women and to look after them and counsel and comfort them (I keep hearing Celia Lashlie's voice here) and to show them that not all people in power are callous and uncaring.

    Is that too much to ask?

    I don't know. I really don't know any more.

    End of rant.

    St John's, Newfoundland • Since Nov 2006 • 121 posts Report

  • Helen Marie,

    Trigger warning for rape.

    I love the word fuck. It has such a satisfying mouth feel and thwacking sound. I have no problem with it being used as a swear or for emphasis. I have however an actual physical reaction to the word rape, it brings with it a gut-twist of horrified recognition, and a feeling of face-blood draining. Horror and shame... even after half a lifetime. The sort of shame that stops you looking anyone in the eye, because you're scared they'll see it.

    The police need to be educated about the shame that comes from being raped or sexually abused. They need to make sure they don't add to it. It lasts a lifetime, or it has for me, though therapy has dulled it a little. I was absolutely horrified to discover they're still doing the same old insensitive, victim-blaming shit that they were doing over 30 years ago when I went to them for help.

    That night I'd just been raped. The guy with no teeth who broke in through the toilet window. My flatmates had walked in on the middle of it, and dragged him downstairs to the party. I think I cried a bit. A girl was there, comforting me, telling me they had the guy downstairs and were dealing with him. I went to sleep eventually. Next thing I knew, there were men in suits looking in the wardrobe. I asked who they were. "We're the police." One pulled my sleeping bag top open, looked in, his bare hands felt around with me naked inside it. (We didn't have beds, just slept on the floor). They said they were looking for a gun. He felt between my legs, underneath me where it was still sticky, looked revolted. So much shame.

    Two days later. My police-station experience was a bit like the Radiolive interview. There were four male cops in the room. Only one was taking down my statement. The others were just sharing the room. They dropped their pens and listened. There were questions about my clothes, about how often I'd had sex that week, that month, that year. Sideways glances. I heard sniggering in the back of the room. A lot of emphasis on the fact that I'd not worn a bra that day (my top had a cut out crochet flower at the back that looked stupid with a thick bra strap running through it, so I'd gone without). How much had I had to drink? How many boys had I slept with again? Snigger. More shame. I remember being surprised and a bit dismayed that my cop couldn't spell sofa. All through my statement was the word "soffa". I signed it and hoped he was smarter than he seemed. Because he was "my" cop and I needed him to do this right. To get this guy sent to prison. Not just for me, but because his sister had begged me to go to the police. She said the whole family were sick of how he fiddled with their kids.

    It didn't get to court. They said everyone had been too drunk to be reliable witnesses... I'd had sex earlier that same day... I'd get ripped to pieces in court... too little evidence in general. I was gutted. Felt like a stupid, drunk little slut who'd been an embarrassing nuisance to all the important men. And the kid-fiddling guy with no teeth just went on fiddling I guess.

    I had imagined that things must be COMPLETELY different now! Surely they would have totally revamped their systems for dealing with sexual assaults. In my mind, there was a special sexual abuse area for interviews with victims. With specially trained experts who could gather the required information with skill and sensitivity, who knew what the psychological effects of this kind of trauma were, and who were careful not to retraumatise. But to read that they were still focusing on clothing and how much the girls had to drink?!

    From today's Herald article by Toby Manhire:

    The 13-year-old who gave the recorded statement in 2011, what is more, told 3News that she was "asked a lot of questions about what I was wearing, and I went out in a skirt". That "they said that I didn't have enough evidence to show, because I went out in clothes that were pretty much asking for it.

    Bitterly, bitterly disappointed and feeling kind of hopeless about police and dickheads on the radio. Though heartened that people are outraged and talking about it. And absolutely delighted about how many of the sponsors pulling their adverts from Radiolive. Giovanni Tiso is a treasure! Surely now something will change? Now going for a very long walk with a dog in whatever weather is around.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2013 • 15 posts Report

  • Jonathan Ibell, in reply to nzlemming,


    Good to see people (esp. men) from across the spectrum responding to such repugnant comments from Jackson and Tamihere (can't bring myself to call him "JT" - he's any not deserving of some cutesy nickname).

    That said, at the local level it's so depressing hearing colleagues - who otherwise generally condem the original crimes, the police response and Jackson/Tamihere's comments - heading down that classic dangerous slippery slope of bringing in apparently valid mitigating circumstances. The impression I was left from this conversation was that, as the girls apparently willingly hung out with these boys, and knew of their behaviour - well, you can join the dots... (And - scarily - this was from women as well as men.)

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 10 posts Report

  • BenWilson, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    Perhaps they’re trying to maintain some shred of trust in the Police?

    I am too. They're still who I'd go to if my daughter (if I had a daughter) came to me and told me that this had happened, and after talking about it we decided to try to get justice. I can well imagine not deciding to do this either, mostly it would depend on what she wanted, although I'm sure my reaction would be a strong influence. I really don't know for sure what I'd do - the parents would also be in the isolation bubble, not knowing if their daughter was the only one this happened to, wanting to keep her reputation intact, minimize any further hurt to her. The idea of then giving her a lecture about being a slut would not cross my mind, and not just because I'm a liberal. It would also be because of the enormous harm that would do to her.

    Trigger warning.

    I've been in this situation only once, as a teenager myself, told by a 14 year old friend she had been raped in similar circumstances. She said she felt better immediately, having told someone. I don't really remember clearly what I said, I was shocked but sympathetic, and not blaming. The point was clear - she was unconscious and came to with a guy on top of her. I didn't need any more information to know that was rape. She had all the self blame going already, shouldn't have drunk so much, shouldn't have been dressed like that, shouldn't have been flirting, can't remember if she was flirting with him (but thinks not because she didn't like him at all) and I could only keep making the point that she wasn't to blame, and that the guy was sick if he thought that was OK. She wasn't going to go to the police, had already had an STD test, definitely didn't want anyone to know, most especially not her family. She was a strong girl, I think she had worked out pretty much everything she was going to do, and telling me was a part of the healing process. She was determined not to let it dominate her life, and continued mostly unchanged in her social behavior. I still feel honored, that she thought I was a good person to share something like that with. What had happened didn't change my opinion about her in the slightest, except perhaps to have increased my respect a little.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report

  • Martin Brown, in reply to Helen Marie,

    That is a terrible story. My God.

    My respect for the Police pretty much died 30 years ago when I was a young radio announcer flatting in Dunedin with a high profile Breakfast announcer and others. Our radio station was quite tight with the cops for some reason, and so we used to drink in the Police bar. I remember having peanut race drinking competitions with Detectives in the Dunedin Police bar when I was all of 18. Our flat in North Dunedin had one of the first Beta players around, and every Thursday night a group of uniform Senior Sergeants who were mates with the Breakfast jock would come over to watch porn. Yup. Watch porn and have a few beers. They weren't worried about the bongs that were laying around the flat, they just wanted to watch John Holmes and have a bit of a laugh. Maybe they had a smoke too. I don't know. I was doing nights that year, 8pm-12 midnight, so I wasn't around. There are more stories. But that's one. Coloured my opinion ever since.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2013 • 137 posts Report

  • Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    Helen, I feel for you.

    Not exactly on point, but: I've taken one positive lesson from this whole series of events, and the stories of Helen and others.

    For a long time I'd been suspicious of the motives of the commune in deciding not to report the paedophile to the police. I couldn't help but suspect that they were at least as scared of the attention to their chosen lifestyle, the possible scandal and suspicion it would throw on hippiedom, as they were worried about what their or their friends' daughters would experience in the justice system.

    Now, I can see just how justified those worries were, and that even if any more selfish fears were part of their decision, the decision was likely (for the commune girls, though I guess not for his subsequent targets) a good one: in fact, public perceptions of hippiedom would only have contributed to the likelihood that we would be mistreated and come out with secondary scars.

    There's some peace in that realisation, and certainly a whole lot more sympathy for those now older adults. Basically, they didn't have any good options, and they did the best they could in the circumstances.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 585 posts Report

  • MrHoward, in reply to Jonathan Ibell,

    This. So much this.

    I thought I was reasonably culturally aware. I mean, I listen to Nat Rad & Radio Live in equal measure. I watch Fox and Firstline and the Daily Show and Southpark. I have friends with teenage kids and I engage and talk and try to get a sense of what goes on those strange brains of theirs. I have kids of my own and chat with all sorts of other parents about all sorts of stuff. I'm a bit of a gamer and know how to craft an enchanting table in Minecraft, but I own a big stihl chainsaw and have actually built surprisingly good quality tables in real life too. I've travelled, but I stay at home. I'm not dumb. I care about stuff big and small. I'm pretty liberal, sort of green, and vote this way but I have a soft spot for Rodney Hide.

    I thought I was a person that got what the world is and knew how it worked and thought that things seemed to be pretty good, give or take the odd "next big thing I'm supposed to be fearful of" according to (insert left/right pundit/expert/commentator here). What I'm trying to say is, I thought I was informed, you know, worldly,

    I thought I got it.

    But this Roast Busters clusterfuck has just peeled the scab away and exposed a whole festering sore of societal ugliness that I can't understand. Or begin to think about how it can be fixed.

    I really haven't got it.

    Jonathan is right. It is depressing. The comments of support for Jackson and Tamihere. The Dick Cheneyness attitude of "Don't blame us, we're the good guys" by the police, the WTFness of some editorials and articles. The apparent pussyfooting around by the Government. It's beyond depressing, it's inexplicable.

    I don't get why we've stuffed advertising and marketing full of images and ideas that young girls can never achieve but must aspire to be. Then we have the gall to criticise them when they try and fail with cries of Shame! Shame! Sluts! You look like your asking for it!

    I don't get why we've allowed porn to become so normalised that kids, KIDS FFS, think that this is now how they are supposed behave towards one another in the sack. It's joked about on TV and radio. It's mainstream, it's funny. It's cool now!

    I don't get why gender issues are still so fucked up. How magazines like Cosmo, Seventeen and their ilk that make so much money off fucking up our youth aren't treated as tobacco companies are for killing people and causing cancer. I mean look at this for crying out loud: http://whtbout2ndbrkfst.tumblr.com/post/64293859230/if-you-want-to-know-why-gender-stereotypes-exist

    I think I need to wake up. I think New Zealand needs to Wake. The. Fuck. Up. There's no need for some ill-advised moral panic, no banning of dancing and blaming it all on rock music. But, what the fuck is going on? The child abuse, the baby killings, the rape culture, the sexualisation of our youth, the suicide rates, the bullshit we swallow from police and government about it......

    Sorry, What am I going on about.....

    Hang on where was I? Yes...right..oh yeah! Xero... how about that Xero stock price? How's your investment property these days? Isn't that traffic in Auckland terrible? Thank goodness the cops are out there making sure everyone is under the 4 kph limit this coming long weekend. Isn't it great that the competition for the All Black #10 jersey is so strong. Isn't Richie awesome.

    There.....I'm starting to feel better already.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2013 • 2 posts Report

  • Hebe, in reply to Matthew Hooton,

    Good on you for making your point on air. Listening to the clip, I know who I believe. (and I'm another who finds plenty to debate in many of your political views).

    And it's fantastic that, being a right-point-of-view commentator, you have broken this whole rape culture issue out of the left and right ghettos into the question of basic human rights. If the descriptions Maori, black or Asian for instance were substituted for 'teenage girls', abhorrence of the statements made would be near-universal.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2899 posts Report

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    Not exactly on point, but: I’ve taken one positive lesson from this whole series of events, and the stories of Helen and others.

    No, this week hasn't been all for nought. It has brought out these experiences, these really hard stories. A friend of mine related an experience yesterday on Facebook that filled in a lot for me and, I presume, her other friends who didn't know about it. It offered a context for why she is sometimes "difficult", and starkly illustrated the awful damage that sexual assault and the disbelief of family members can do. As I say in today's Music Post, the best I could manage in reply was to send her this song.

    I've cried every time I've played that fucking song today.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report

  • david kinniburgh, in reply to MrHoward,

    Morpheus: The Matrix is a system, Neo. That system is our enemy. But when you're inside, you look around, what do you see? Businessmen, teachers, lawyers, carpenters. The very minds of the people we are trying to save. But until we do, these people are still a part of that system and that makes them our enemy. You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inured, so hopelessly dependent on the system, that they will fight to protect it.

    [Neo's eyes suddenly wander towards a woman in a red dress]

    Morpheus: Were you listening to me, Neo? Or were you looking at the woman in the red dress?

    Neo: I was...

    Morpheus: [gestures with one hand] Look again.

    [the woman in the red dress is now Agent Smith, pointing a gun at Neo's head; Neo ducks]

    Morpheus: Freeze it.

    [Everybody and everything besides Neo and Morpheus freezes in time]

    Neo: This... this isn't the Matrix?

    Morpheus: No. It is another training program designed to teach you one thing: if you are not one of us, you are one of them.
    Police are hunting for a man who attacked and sexually violated an 87-year-old Hastings pensioner in her home yesterday. ..The Horrid : 10:03 AM Friday Nov 8

    Auckland • Since Jan 2012 • 29 posts Report

  • Chris Waugh,

    Pablo at Kiwipolitico weighs in - and his final question is doing my head in given our plans - and a commenter leaves a link to this.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report

  • Jason Kemp,

    I didn’t know about this recent change to the Crimes Act ( Mar 2012) it almost certainly doesn’t apply but in view of current events it shows clear intention.

    New Legislation: Crimes Amendment Act 2011

    **Section 195A – Failure to protect child or vulnerable adult**

    New section 195A of the Crimes Act 1961 is targeted at persons who have frequent contact with a child or vulnerable adult (the victim) and are members of the same household as the victim or are a staff member of any hospital, institution, or residence where the victim resides.

    With the exception of those under the age of 18, such a person will be liable to a term of imprisonment not exceeding 10 years if he or she:

    (a) knows that the victim is at risk of death, grievous bodily harm, or sexual assault as the result of —

    (i) an unlawful act by another person; or

    (ii) an omission by another person to discharge or perform a legal duty if, in the circumstances, that omission is a major departure from the standard of care expected of a reasonable person to whom that legal duty applies; and

    (b) fails to take reasonable steps to protect the victim from that risk.

    Not sure if age and statutory rape has been considered earlier. The thought is that for any of the victims who were under 16 – no consent can be given. If they are under 16 its an offence full stop.

    It may be that “boys” were engaging before they turned 16 as well.

    That doesn’t magic up any evidence but it does show that the whole issue of consent has been very misunderstood.

    134Sexual conduct with young person under 16

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 368 posts Report

  • Paul Campbell,

    let's not also forget "supplying alcohol to a minor"

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2623 posts Report

  • tussock,


    I don't think I ever really got how decent a place PAS is before this. I wish I had something to add, but y'all are doing superbly. So is the internet in general, it should be said.

    Perhaps a review. Triggers, sorry.

    * The police lie. All the time. It's their default response to being questioned (and presenting evidence, making enquires, etc).
    * The police want convictions so bad (it's how they're reviewed and promoted, after all) that they will not even take reports of crimes where a conviction might be difficult to achieve. They will lie about this too.
    * The police consider rape is difficult to convict. Which it clearly is, due to the issues around what counts as a valid defence.

    There are a good many layers of problems there. Not readily solved either. Obviously one would start by incentivising report takers to take reports. Then incentivise those who bring cases to bring cases. I get the courts would be busy, but it seems they'd be busy with rapists, so fund them some more hours, appoint some more judges, and get on with it.

    But then ...

    "These young guys should just grow up," Key said this afternoon.


    See, there's problems with incentives in the police force, problems with the trial structure too, but holy shit the problems with rape culture seem to overwhelm them by a very large amount. Grow up? So, stop wearing your pants so low, get a tie and jacket, hold your head up in public, and oh, stop raping people. So childish. Really?

    Fixing that could sort some of the ridiculous things juries accept as a defence for rape, in line with lowering the number of rapists so as to not fill up the courts and prisons too fast as the police think it a good idea to do something in response.

    Since Nov 2006 • 611 posts Report

  • James Knuckey,

    The internet in general is not necessarily doing a good job.

    The Roast Busters page is back on Facebook - they opened a new one on Wednesday. I'm not going to link to it... although perhaps I should. Direct all the outrage and hate of the internet at them.

    I've reported the page to Facebook. I immediately (within 5 minutes) got a response back saying the page wasn't removed - so I went through their feedback process - one of their questions was "I understand Facebook's decision" - which I naturally strongly disagreed with because they didn't give a reason.

    I urge everyone to go find the page and do the same. Report it to Facebook. They need to get the hell off facebook, their personal accounts removed or suspended also.

    Oh and they also need prison terms and remedial counselling. It's going to be horrible for them to confront the reality of what they've done - they need to do this.

    I'm wondering in all this though - the old page was deleted, i'm hoping the Police can still get access to all the data on that page from Facebook. I thought their admissions of rape and the video footage would be admissable as evidence, surely?

    There are a bunch of marches against rape happening in many cities in a week or so. I'll be at the Wellington one. The more the better.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2013 • 1 posts Report

  • nzlemming,

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2937 posts Report

  • stephen clover, in reply to Helen Marie,

    Thanks for sharing the story of your experience, Helen. I'm so sorry you had to go through that ordeal.

    wgtn • Since Sep 2007 • 355 posts Report

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to tussock,

    Grow up? So, stop wearing your pants so low, get a tie and jacket, hold your head up in public, and oh, stop raping people. So childish. Really?

    No, Tussock, it's about functional adults who are properly socialized in the concept that unconscious people, by definition, are unable to meaningfully consent to anything -- including sexual intercourse. That would be a pretty good start. And it would also be wizard if a non-trivial number of people cashed the reality check that 100% of rape is committed by rapists, not short skirts, cocktails, alleyways or the dark because I'm all the way over explaining that factoid.

    And, yes, I found what the Prime Minister said *cough* problematic. But it's infinitely preferable to "Rape just happens, like earthquakes and volcanoes. Whut ya gonna do?"

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

  • Lucy Telfar Barnard, in reply to James Knuckey,

    I urge everyone to go find the page and do the same. Report it to Facebook.

    Well, that was an interesting exercise. I got the same swift decision to leave the page active. But the process was pretty poor.

    First, how do I categorise what’s wrong with the page? It’s not harassing me personally, nor anyone I personally know. It’s not spam or a scam. It’s not duplicated or miscategorised. I don’t want to report a post rather than an entire page. That leaves “I just don’t like it” or “I don’t think it should be on facebook”. But I have to pick one of these, not both. I’m going with “I don’t think it should be on facebook”, on the grounds that there are probably a bunch of things I just don’t like but that’s not enough to justify removing their facebook pages.

    The next choice is why. My options are “Spam or scam”; “Hate speech” (and if you click that you have to choose what type – I tried that the first unsuccessful time, as hate speech on grounds of gender). The other options are “sexually explicit content”, which doesn’t apply because there isn’t any yet; or “Violence or harmful behaviour”.

    Violence or harmful behaviour sounds reasonable, but the options you get for that are “credible threat of violence”; “self-harm”; “suicidal content”; “graphic violence”; “theft or vandalism”, or “drug use”. Where on this list is “promoting or glorifying rape”? Again, there’s nothing actually on the page yet. So which of these am I meant to choose?

    This time I’ve decided to try “credible threat of violence”. I doubt it’ll be any more successful than the last complaint, but one has to try.

    ETA: And sure enough, the second attempt was just as unsuccessful as the first.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 585 posts Report

  • BenWilson,

    I chose "violence or harmful behaviour" with "credible threat of violence", because I consider raping and rape incitement to fall into those categories. It might help the cause that 95% of the comments on the page are people giving death threats and gloating about what's going to happen to them in prison. I hope the people making the threats realize that the police are likely to be monitoring the page.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report

  • Robert Urquhart,

    I haven't seen this in the thread yet, apologies if it is a repost. From the Book of Face ..
    The Good Detective and How He Helped Me Find My Voice

    A personal account of how the police can get it right, but a lot more besides.

    Christchurch • Since Mar 2009 • 163 posts Report

  • Ana Simkiss,

    Here is something that enraged me, interested in the PAS view, particularly Labour Party members:
    "Are you really saying, for example, that working class Maori men who look and sound like Willie and JT don’t deserve representation in the Labour party because of their offensive views on certain issues?"

    From this thread on Pundit: http://pundit.co.nz/content/roast-busters-horror-reveals-ugly-politics

    Freemans Bay • Since Nov 2006 • 141 posts Report

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