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Sunday, March 18, 2012

q+a review

I'm told the grand old cyclops of NZ broadcasting was as race baiting in his Waitangi Day column as he was so as to generate controversy for his return on Q+A. It was that craven. Just because TVNZ broadcasts to the public doesn't make it public broadcasting.

The panel this morning is that awful Dr Claire Robinson and the excellent Bernard Hickey of interest.co.nz and former Green Party MP Keith Locke. Good to see Q+A following Citizen A's panelist selections. First up is an interview with the Minister for Managed Declines, Bill English. If they don't point out the looming war between him and Joyce now Joyce has created an alternative to Treasury with his Soviet Super Ministry, I will throw the remote at the TV. Robert Fisk has been conned into talking to Holmes, Paul's previous contribution on Syria was a bizarre commentary piece about what the Syrian protesters would do to the face of the First Lady. Creepy.

The one thing I can salute q+a over is that they have cut back on the number of stories and focus more on fewer things. Makes for more depth. The News bulletin still clunks, and the opening monologue is still the best part of the show.

I am betting it will take English less than 5 seconds to blame the Christchurch Earthquake for his inability to get into surplus, Bill does it in 3 seconds. As far as Dr Optimistic is concerned, the surplus he's promised that no one else believes will be met are still just around the corner. The credibility gap between Bill's words and the reality seem almost delusional, we are not going to be in surplus by 2014. He's blaming welfare dependency and uses the debt bogeyman to justify more austerity. Shane is a new interviewer and he's getting bounced all over the place by English. Guyon Espiner used to glad hand National Party MPs because he loved the right wing, Shane does it because he's a lot slower in the ring.

English is going to close down 3 prisons, not 2 prisons and he's trying to justify it from a 'safety' point of view. He's closing down these prisons to re-house the prisoners into the private prisons and is aiming to hack out about 400 Corrections staff. This will mean NZ will have the highest % of prisoners in private prisons than any other country on the planet.

The joke explanation as to the debt bogeyman is just so untrue and fear mongering to justify austerity.

Shane lifts his game focusing on the Auckland property bubble. Bill seems genuinely concerned about that and his claim the banks won't fund a bubble is pointed out as plainly untrue with banks now offering 90% mortgages.

Bill has the audacity to claim a mandate to use asset sales to fund infrastructure when Government should be funding that infrastructure through taxation, not flogging off our assets. His explanation that we will all gain because kiwisaver accounts will buy into them is such a desperate stretch that it seems difficult coming from the lips of an adult.

Disappointingly weak interview, no wonder Bill English ended the interview with a grin the size of Greek debt.

Bernard points out how tough making that surplus is going to be. Keith notes all the Government will do is cut expenditure to get to surplus. The National Party representative Dr Claire murmurs something none committal. Bernard keeps pointing out how mythical the surplus will be. Everyone except Dr Claire criticizes asset sales, she immediately claims National has every mandate under the sun to sell assets. What she misses is that 68% of the enrolled electorate didn't vote for this Government. The mandate is a technical one, not an ethical mandate.

Fisk is on. He is a current affairs God. Paul should bow in his presence. Fisk provides the kind of political commentary this country could only dream of generating.

Keith and Bernard earn their fee on the panel and make erudite points, Dr Claire flounders. She's not actually very good is she?



At 18/3/12 2:02 pm, Blogger Frank said...

Hmmm, not often that we disagree, Bomber, but I view Holmes' opening remarks as juvenile and smug. It's almost as if he's trying to impress the viewershgip by saying "oh how very clever am I".

I concur with your comment,

"Fisk is on. He is a current affairs God. Paul should bow in his presence. Fisk provides the kind of political commentary this country could only dream of generating. "

In fact, I came away from that interview thinking, now THAT is a real journo; older, experienced; wiser in the ways of the world. Who do we have that measures anywhere near Fisk? Who do we have who has years; DECADES; of experience?

I betcha no one springs to mind. They've all been replaced by 20-somethings or 30-somethings who know next to nothing about world affairs. And when we do have an "Old Sage" - it's... Paul Holmes. *facepalm*

Interesting how Shane didn't seem to score any points against English. It's not like there's a paucity of material out there to throw at the Dipton farmer. Someone is not doing their homework.

I'd love to see Kim Hill do the job. As well as her fearsome razor-sharp intellect, her presence would break up the Cosy Boys' Club that Q+A and especially 'The Nation' have become.

Probably the worst aspect of this episode were the opening clips from Shearer and Key. With Shearer, they showed a clip making him look silly. With Key, they showed a straight piece. A few more of those and the media meme will start painting Shearer as a clown. Not good.

Did I learn anything from the Shearer-Key item? Not much.

Did I learn anything from the piece on Syria? You bet.

At 18/3/12 3:45 pm, Blogger Ardbeg said...

I thought Fisk was minus a couple of black coffees.

At 19/3/12 9:09 am, Blogger Todd Ross said...

????? If it is for a majority of Kiwisaver accounts & super funds etc...we need legislation to sell to the funds, why not just legislate to enable the entities as a valid investment for the funds?

At 19/3/12 1:22 pm, Blogger Damian said...

Fisk was, let's not fuck around, pissed as a fart. I had the job of editing out (mainly for reasons of length) some of his more rambling answers and bizarre statements. But I kinda think that if you agree to do an interview, even with little ol' NZ TV, you might want to stay sober for it... it did lessen his 'hero status' a bit for me.

At 19/3/12 5:03 pm, Blogger Frank said...

Damian, it sez a lot if an intoxicated Fisk was still more enlightening as a journo than our current lot...

At 19/3/12 6:32 pm, Blogger peterquixote said...

Fisk dresses badly. He is pompous.

Holmes said that after Fisk was telling us all everything.

"so there you have it
Fisk says Syria has to stop killing its own people.
Pull yourselves together Syria and Russia Fisk has spoken"

I agree with Holmes. Fuck off Fisk, you look boring you speak boring we are sick of you


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