Q+A and The Nation
On the panel, that lovely Julian Robins from Radio NZ and some other nasty bloke, I forget his name, he looked like a drink spiking, slicked hair, lounge lizard.
This week, Labour Party Bashing (lol - the new Edward R Murrow of NZ Media, Duncan "If you want a fucking war, you'll get one." Garner - apparently he added 'You are pathetic' according to Dame Bazley - is leading his war against Labour Party Boss, Andrew Little - that should be about as fair and balanced as Fox News) and Whaleoil.
Yes Whaleoil, the online voice for National joins the former Press Secretary for Gerry Brownlee to 'debate' the issues. I like to think of that interview as 'the sound of one hand clapping'.
Excellent use of the Scoop (thank God The Nation listened to me and dumped Jane Clifton hosting this snippet and took it back to the original 'scoop' style when The Nation pointed out Finlayson was screwed over the Tuhoe deal because white focus groups told National they were too nice to Maori. This week the scoop noted that Carter's recent trip overseas annoyed someone from Saudia Arabia so much so that Key had to make an apology!
That's the entree, let's have the mains...
The only thing Duncan wants is to hear Andrew Little say is he will take over from Goff, pointless question seeing as Little doesn't even have a seat yet. Duncan is using these cheap bullshit brainfart polls to demand that Labour is over and they need to all commit suicide. Little points out Labour are doing okay in the electoral cycle, Little could have also pointed out that these polls don't tell us what the weighting is, what the call back was or if the polls used cell phones or just land lines. The Polls are bullshit, Little should challenge Duncan on their veracity.
It does look like Little will run in 2011 and it also looks like Duncan will be running for National in the next election as well.
Richard Harman then does possibly the dumbest story on the analogue TV switch over. He humps a couple of corporate legs who obviously want to buy the analogue frequency, yet Harman NOWHERE in the entire piece points out why the analogue switch off hasn't happened yet - and it is because National fucked up their negotiation deal with Maori over the spectrum!
National forgot to negotiate and are now scrambling. What would be interesting is to know if these corporates have started any negotiations with Maori? But not a word? Did Harman not know this???
The reality for TV is that the over-capitalized, overseas-content dependent media monoliths of today are doomed to be the dinosaurs of tomorrow, the only difference being that these pre-extinct beings know their doom is approaching. Brian Eno, one-time synthesiser player with Roxy Music, made a prediction in 1991: "Future TV will be made with simple equipment, unqualified people, small budgets and bad taste." How right he was. Harman missed all of that.
He also missed the impact on our democracy with an explosion of channels, what impact does that have on public broadcasting? The explosion of channels and the fake 'choice' that brings does have an impact on public broadcasting.
In 1984, 40% of the news on TVNZ was politics, but after the viewer as consumer restructuring where broadcasters started actively thinking of viewers as consumers rather than citizens, that had fallen by 1996 to only 20%, with the other 20% now crime stories. If it bleeds, it leads because shock stories about crime gain ratings.
Sadly the introduction of Freeview in 2008 hasn't seemed to have stopped this trend, in fact it seems to have been a greenlight for TVNZ to push these viewer as consumer buttons much deeper into the 6pm News hour. Two years before Freeview became available on both terrestrial and digital frequencies, in March 2006, crime made up 22% of the news and was featured 29% in the headlines, yet 2 years after Freeview crime stories in March 2010 on the 6pm News made up only 14% of the stories in that month, yet was represented a staggering 35% of the time in the headlines.
Even though news stories as a whole had slumped to 14% in March 2010 on the 6pm One News, it was represented 35% of the time in the headlines. The impact is that the shock value of crime is vastly over represented in the news headlines so the impression left with viewers is one of a mad max post apocalyptic nightmare requiring Dirty Harry to sort out.
Interesting to note that the misrepresentation of crime in the News coincided with the rise of the Sensible Sentencing Trust.
Of course none of that popped up in the discussion on the analogue switch off.
Next bit was a good pummeling to the Film Commission by Peter Jacksons report, glad to see them get a kicking from our favourite son of cinema.
Thankfully they have put Murray McCully's defacto Press Secretary, Jane Clifton from the Listener on a little later and have dimmed the harsh, harsh light that made her so haggard looking. She's got the week in the House segment now, and I'm sorry, but it fails to deliver. I'm a Parliament Question Time Junkie (PQTJ - we have a facebook group) and there is shitloads of way funnier moments than the weak selection here. Look I'll even email them through to you with time coding - anything to make this segment more amusing than it currently is.
That lovely Micheal from Sunrise (the only real talent on that show), does a brilliant wrap up of the economic news of the week, he's pretty good value.
Finally the online Press Secretary for the National Party (whaleoil) meets with the former Press Secretary for Gerry Brownlee in an interview I like to call 'the sound of one hand clapping'. The funny thing about Cam is that he's actually really reasonable on TV, I know crazy huh? On line he's a form of culturally transmitted disease, on TV he's Mr bloody credible. It's a smart move by The Nation to reach out to the blogging community and is surprisingly a step ahead of Q+A.
I think Cam will soon be turning up on a 7pm panel show.
The opening monologue is brilliant, points out the absurdity of Banks claim to get the Olympics and how it hid his own over spending, points out how the ETS is actually subsidizing the polluters and is now subsidizing Farmers as much as they were under Robert Muldoon!!! Bloody Farmers! AND they have the cheek to bitch about the ETS??? Bloody Farmers!
Jon Johansson astoundingly notes how at the MMP submission, Peter Shirtcliffe said his problem with MMP was that it will take too much time to implement Don Brash's catch up plan with Australia! Lawyer Marie Dyhrberg is on the panel with Ross Bell from the Drug Foundation (whom I have always fought like cat and dog with).
Simon Power is up re the booze issue. He's talking about cracking down on youth drinking NOT adult drinking, so that gives a clue how National will attempt to avoid the nanny state crap they spent so much time building up as a cultural belief.
Not increasing the excise tax is weak and shows how National will suck up to the booze industry. The fact is the liberalization of booze in this country hasn't worked, we have allowed booze to be sold everywhere at every time. It's the availability and cheapness of booze that is the problem, if you don't deal with that you don't deal with anything.
Simon pointed out marketing (which is interesting as the restrictions on Booze marketing are pretty tight as they are in the mainstream, but very loose when it comes to social media). Alco pops popped up as an issue, and let's be honest, it's sugar and booze - its aimed at kids, come on Simon, dump them. I liked Simon's ideas about a split system, 20 to buy booze at an off licence and 18 to buy it in a bar.
He also has seen first hand the impacts of 24/7 corner bars (there is one directly across from TVNZ that NEVER looks good early in the morning, and he saw it as he went in for media interviews).
I don't trust Simon when it comes to reforming our prison system or judicial system - but I think he is sounding pretty smart on this booze regulation stuff.
Industry Pimp Bruce Robertson is up against Lianne Dalziel. She is saying the problem is broader than teenagers, Bruce is sweating it. He claims the solutions are 'academic and theoretical' - LOL. He's up shit creek without a paddle. Lianne crushes him, the industry needs to get that regulation is coming, they need to formulate a better defence than this.
My thinking, we need to regulate booze because its social cost is so high. Get booze out of the supermarkets, out of the dairys, knock up the price, 20 to buy, 18 to be in a bar restrict those 24 hour licences.
Jon is concerned that you can't go back on 18 year olds for booze, Ross makes a very valid comment about how we have liberalized booze way too much, Marie suggests we have to go softly softly. Ross points out the Industry spends $200 000 per day on marketing booze.
Chief Censor Bill Hastings is on to talk about his time as the Chief Censor. He's a good bloke, I like him, what a bloody awful job to have to watch all that dreadful child abuse crap. I can't imagine they pop much pop corn at the censor's office. He points out that offence isn't enough, it has to be a higher threshold than that. The Pavement Magazine example was interesting in terms of 'what is art'. What is the point of the censor in the age of the internet was a good question, his answer was that the role is also educational to explain why certain content is harmful for individuals.