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Stuff and nonsense

May 8, 2012

Key’s bizarre doublethink defended by stuff.co.nz

After providing John Key with a free platform for spin yesterday – in which he managed to dig both his Government and Fairfax Media in to a big, bizarre hole – stuff.co.nz today brought in the eloquent John Hartevelt to tidy up the PM’s rediculous waffle.

You’ll recall that Key had argued that the rejection of hard-Right austerity-focussed governments in Europe was actually a vote of confidence in hard-Right austerity, and that vast numbers of New Zealanders currently looking for work was really a good thing.  Fairfax reported the Prime Minister’s doublethink without any analysis or comment from pesky Opposition types, who would have had an absolute field day in challenging Key’s twisted logic, had Fairfax been the least bit interested in providing balance.

Of course, Key’s comments were just too bizarre to make any credible sense, and when Fairfax Media did him the usual courtesy of reporting his views unchallenged, they too fell into a deep hole right after him, as was pointed out by many of the correspondents who used the comments forum attached to the story.

So today, Fairfax hauled in their most articulate columnist, John Hartevelt, in an attempt to bring some credible logic to the nonsensical doublethink they’d expected readers to swallow hook, line and sinker yesterday.  His piece – written under the headline “Why Key is no Sarko” – is indeed better presented and more persuasive than yesterday’s dire propaganda, but the sheer depth of the hole dug yesterday meant that Hartevelt was always going to be pushing the proverbial waste matter up-hill. 

According to a very wise metaphor, when one finds oneself in a hole, they should stop digging.  And, to his credit, Hartevelt did have a genuine attempt at clearing some of the mess, but in the end, a hole is a hole, and in trying to dig their way out of it, both Fairfax Media and the National Party have simply managed to cover themselves in even more shit.  Either Fairfax Media occupy the same out-of-touch cuckoo’s nest as the National Party, or they are just so bound to supporting Key’s hard-Right agenda that they will agree with anything he says, no matter how odd or Orwellian.

Meanwhile today, stuff.co.nz published yet another one-sided piece of National Party spin, this time under the headline “Benefits sink to near-three-year low”.   Once again, it’s a shameless exercise in simplistic one-dimensional propaganda, wjth no Opposition comment or analysis to counter Paula Bennett’s spin.  A real journalist might have been inclined to ask how these beneficieries are now making a living, seeing as there are no jobs.  And, they may have even looked for a correlation in crime figures, because, when benefits are simply removed, people still have to survive.  I am not in any way excusing theft, but the next time you see a sharp rise in burglary statistics, you might just wonder if there is a connection.  Of course, you probably won’t see anything about it on stuff.co.nz.

But, the pressure on Fairfax Media to provide balanced reporting is increasing every day; please join us on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/fearfacts/

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/blogs/the-whip/6874442/Why-Key-is-no-Sarko

http://tumeke.blogspot.co.nz/2012/05/why-austerity-and-democracy-cant-mix.html

http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2012/05/08/the-dark-art-of-spin-how-its-done/

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/6881299/Benefits-sink-to-near-three-year-low

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2 Comments
  1. Key’s comment was probably the most bizarre in a long line of gaffes. This one was obviously deliberately crafted “spin” from National;’s political strategists and media advisors.

    Fair enough – that’s what politicians (with certain exceptions) do: they bullshit with the best, and employed highly paid (by us, the taxpayer) advisors to write that BS.

    What is inexplicable is that the media doesn’t zero in on BS like that line, and hold the poli responsible for it by good journalistic integrity.

    The job of the polui is to BS the voter so we think s/he is the Messiah. The job of the journo is to peel away that BS and find out what lies beneath the “spin”.

    For John Hartevelt to try to “explain away” that BS is probably the worst aspect of this matter.

    Being complicit in the political “Dark Arts” is not the role of the media. In effect, we are seeing a Western version of the Soviet era media, where “Pravda”, “Izveztia”, et al, were simply organs and mouth pieces for the ruling Communist Party.

    If that’s where Fairfax is heading, they can expect to become more and more irrelevant in the future, and the rise of Bloggers/People’s journalists.

    So be it.

  2. By the way – forget to say; well done, Neil! Good analysis!

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