Q+A and The Nation review
Goodness hasn't The Nation descended quickly to its hard right wing default tone? Seeing as the host was Gerry Brownlee's former press agent, you just knew the soft hug that passed as an interview this morning was never going to pass any critical review and having Mitch Harris, the most right wing Talkback boss in the country and Fran O'Sullivan the most right wing columnist in the country as their 'balance' made me run screaming to Q+A where Paula Bennett was roasted by Guyon Espiner although Q+A's 'balance' was John Tamihere and Christine bloody Rankin (interestingly TV3 are now replaying The Nation at 8am on Sunday mornings - perhaps their 11am Saturday screening isn't pulling the ratings)
Q+A actually attacked mining figures over and over and over again pointing out Brownlee's lies in a way The Nation totally avoided.
Guyon challenged Paula on her 'Rising tide of dependency' line and he argued that her numbers didn't prove that we were about to be swamped and that it was the economy stupid, not a culture of bludging. Paula did her usual, 'yeah nah' response where she agrees with the criticism being used against her but then denounces the lot. It seems her experience of being a Solo Mother has not given her empathy or sympathy, just a self righteous belief in justifying cutting others off from the same support she received.
Paula admitted with glee that 4000 were cut off Welfare altogether and her work sanctions would see those with mental health issues lose half their welfare if they failed those work sanctions, telling Guyon that it was better for these people to get with the program because being forced to work was good for those with depression even though Treasury recommended the work test not go ahead because the 15 hour forced work deal would only give that mentally unwell person an extra dollar an hour! Paula refused to listen to Guyon's argument with a gabble of homely 'I know best bullshit' wrapped up with some empty Dr Phil aspiration.
Guyon then prodded Paula on where the jobs will be for all these DPB sluts who are wasting our taxpayer money by breeding once they are righteously forced back to work. Paula told Guyon that they will find 40 000 part time jobs for those 40 000 DPB sluts because that's the way it's going to be (damned DPB sluts). Paula didn't seem to care that much about the 70 000 welfare children who will be damaged by these policies.
The difference between The Nation and Q+A is now pretty obvious, Q+A are an attempt at public broadcasting and the democratic principle of holding the powerful to account (finally - and thanks only to there being competition for funding now), where as The Nation is user pays current affairs aimed at defending the corporate interests of the Government at all costs (seriously was today's show sponsored by the mining industry?)