Granny comes to Nats’ rescue, again

I’m starting to wonder whether the Herald shouldn’t carry an authorisation statement at the bottom of page 1. From the National Party.

Let’s look at how it’s spun reported Cocktail-gate. After a few days of defensive denials and retractions — does he really need Crosby-Textor to tell him his every move? — Key sought to divert attention from the revealing recordings by pointing the finger at Labour.

That was all Granny needed. Quick as a flash, Granny was running Key’s accusations:

“Mr Key blamed Labour activists for infiltrating the cocktail party, saying some were ejected later in the conference weekend.”

No need for any evidence — and it could have been a disillusioned Nat, anachist, Green, whatever. Even that old troglodyte Garth George froths about politics in NZ reaching a “new low” (would Colin Moyle agree with that, I wonder?) and the “scumbag” who perpetrated this heinous crime. Funny, I don’t remember George denouncing the person who taped Mike Williams at Labour’s conference.

Oh, and now we’re asked to believe that Key’s Electorate Office rubbish has been tampered with on the basis that a rubbish bag disappeared. Given that a botched burglary of the Democratic Party’s offices in the Watergate complex brought about the downfall of a US President, the idea that any politicians would engage in that sort of activity in the era of cell-phone cameras and the like is risable.

All too predictably there’s Granny’s editorial, pronouncing that “Dirty tricks benefit no one”:

“As revelations go, these are rather less remarkable than the method by which they were obtained. Discreet recording is done but not commonly published by ethical news organisations …”

It’s not fair, says Granny, unless there is a denial or the public interest outweighs partisan politics.

What Granny’s trying to sell here is the idea that we didn’t learn anything from the tapes. But we did. In the policy vacuum that we’ve been treated to by National, these candid conversations have revealed much more about National’s real intentions once it’s safely installed in power (having not frightened the horses).

So, what of the ethics of the whole affair? Gordon Campbell argues that:

“A defining aspect of 21st century politics is the pervasiveness of political spin, and the tactics of media manipulation by political parties. Frankly, if a lone activist with a $200 dictaphone can defeat the massed phalanxes of p.r. bullshit, and thereby give the public a clearer idea of what the next government may actually do when elected, then surely that’s all to the good – isn’t it?”

Campbell also points out that it is less ethical to hide your intentions until in power and then do, “what you REALLY had in mind all along, but didn’t dare risk saying out loud because people wouldn’t have voted for you in the first place.”

Well put, Gordon.

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6 Responses to “Granny comes to Nats’ rescue, again”

  1. AndrewE Says:

    I think you are really stretching things if you thought we learnt anything new from those tapes.

  2. macdoctor01 Says:

    Wow, JP. You have finally left the planet if you seriously think that National could get away with suddenly springing a secret agenda of privatisation as soon as they get in power. Do you think they would last more than one term?

    Of course Bill English would like to sell Kiwibank. He is a Nat, after all. Economically, he’s probably right. It’s certainly not what a government should be involved in. But there is no way he’s going to sell it against the express wishes of the people of NZ. That’s the sort of thinking that got Labour where it is in the polls (section 59 ring any bells?)

  3. jafapete Says:

    No MacDoc, I’m still safely on the planet, and of the view that Kiwibank is in NZ ownership for the time being (i.e. until a second term, assuming that the Nats get a first one). It’s the discussion papers that I’m worried about. You know, the useful stuff.

    If you want full-on loony tune conspiracy nonsense, try Whale Oil’s “Very Impertinent Questions”. Even better, look at 08wire’s Impertinent Answers.

  4. macdoctor01 Says:

    Glad to see you’re still with us 🙂
    All I heard in the tapes were the thoughts of practical politicians saying that they were comfortable with the fact that they couldn’t pursue any far-right ideologically-driven policies, because the public wouldn’t stand for it. To me, that sounds exactly what a government should be – pragmatic people doing the public’s will in a practical manner.

  5. Truthseeker Says:

    The Herald today is little more than a National Party spin-sheet. Today’s edition confirmed that in spades.

    Here’s why:

    They completely ignored and avoided the reality that what the Nats are saying in public isn’t what they are saying in private. That the Nats are wearing sheep’s clothing though their tastes clearly tend to wolf.

    National wouldn’t not have any problems if they were saying the same thing in private that they say in public.

    The Herald laments that National’s policies aren’t further to the right: “If only it were so”.

    Tony O’Reilly is making full use of the EFA’s “Overseas Billionaire Media Baron” exemption……including those two entire info-mercial sections in the Weekend Herald recently about John Key.

    If ever there was any doubt this country needed a review of its media ownership laws by foreign interests, the Herald is dispelling it.

  6. sconehead Says:

    Have I missed something?

    Did I vote for Rogernomics in 1984? Did anyone? I think not.

    Which is why you shouldn’t even think of voting ACT, scone. ACT was formed by the very group of people who perpetrated that fraud on NZ democracy.

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