q+a and The Nation - weekend current affairs review
Simon Shepard (or happy labrador) is hosting, he's ok, he's not as feral right as Garner so that makes The Nation slightly more accessible to anyone with an education.
The Colin James interview is still one of the best political wrap ups of the week. Discussing the horror story that has been Hekia Parata and notes the points we were making on Citizen A this week of utter political mismanagement by the Government over larger class room sizes. They note how poorly Hekia has performed, laugh at how she tried to claim she had a standing ovation and relegate her to yesterdays fish and chip wrappers.
Collin notes the rise and rise of the Greens, he was invited - sadly I wasn't. He points out the issues they need to require
Russel is on, he's been asked if they are the 'real' opposition. He grins.
The issue of the Greens not getting into the bear pit of politics (always their weakness in the past) is touched upon and Russel admits they are fighting much harder, and it's working for them. Russel is very nice to David Shearer, ridiculously so.
Cabinet positions are discussed, Russel says it's way too early to discuss that, but he wants the power to deal with the imbalances in society and this is the crux of the friction between Laboyr and the Greens.
The issue between Labour and the Greens is essential to this entire discussion. No one has held back on Green ambitions more than Helen Clark, Labour have treated the Greens terribly during their 9 years of power and the realization MUST BE from Labour that the Greens are an equal not a junior.
How does Labour one up the Greens (a question I keep getting from desperate Labor Party MP's) and the answer is so clear it's almost embarrassing. The Greens are still wedded to free market forces to employ their green proposals, that won't go ANYWHERE near what is required to deal with the great depression about to hit us. David Cunliffe's discussion on the flawed free market mechanisms of Milton Friedman is the only discussion in town right now, and it is as Brain Easton has pointed out in his brilliant MUST READ essay last week on how the left have to create an alternative economic argument that goes beyond the failed free market systems the Greens are reliant on to create their green sustainable economy that is the answer to Labour's terminal decline as the Greens continue to eat into their vote.
I'll go into this debate in a lot more depth on Monday in a post I'm writing Labour vs Greens (or Labour + Greens + Mana).
The mining discussion is interesting. Russel says he wants mining?????? Jesus he's clever. Green Party loyalists will find what he is saying here as sacrilege, but Russel knows they can't go anywhere else, by stating that he is open to mining he is showing power brokers that the Greens are ready to be Government.
Russel Norman has been underestimated by many (myself included) but he has shown himself to be a player several levels above what is being offered by Labour at the moment. He will be the co-leader of whatever Government is formed after 2014, whether Labour like it or not.
Vaguely interesting pre-produced piece on stats NZ. I'm sure it's fascinating to the wonks, but I was tempted to switch over to Comedy Central, but it was a re-run of an American Dad episode, so Richard Harmen can count his lucky stars.
Excellent piece on the NZIFF (which Tumeke will once again be reviewing this year, as we have for the past decade). This year there will be a short film on the horror of the dawn raids, a despicable time in NZs history where we allowed white bigotry to form Police policy (so not THAT much difference to today). Good to see The Nation expand their view to a wider one than the right wing, which when you consider the unbelievable million in taxpayer funds from NZ on Air they receive, is the least The Nation could do.
Ralston and Brian are on reviewing the media week, one of the best segments of The Nation. Bill predictably defends Paul's right to be a racist bigot in his racist opinion piece in the NZ Herald, what Bill refuses to accept is that Paul was blatantly racist on the eve of his return to Q+A, it was as Holmes ALWAYS does a defilement of other people purely to create media attention. Holmes does this every radio ratings time and he does it when he comes back on air. It's an attempt to create sensation and should be damned for what it is, Bill of course refuses to see it for what it is.
Interesting to note that TV3 have decided to strengthen their Sunday morning current affairs line up with something called Three60 and then 'Think Tank' hosted by that awful John Tamihere. If I wanted right wing views on current affairs, I'd just tune into ZB, not continue watching it on TV3.
Greg Boyd hosting it because Paul Holmes heart seems to have decided he's too racist for it to keep beating in his chest.
I'm enjoying the lack of respect the Gen X reporters like Boyd and Shane seem to have for National Party MPs, it really is a generational thing.
First up the Governments bullshit response to our alcoholic nation. Let's be clear, the Government has watered down this response because they have been bought and paid for by the booze barons. They have left booze in the Supermarkets, they have left the advertising alone and they have left the price alone. It is a nothing, it is a joke, it is paid for policy and the Government have failed us in putting together social policy that is actually in the benefit of the alcohol pushers not the addict. The Government has shat upon the expert advice from the Law Commission so as to appease their donors in the booze industry, it really is as simple as that.
Shane is on top of Judith through out this interview, she spends the entire time back peddling. Her answers are just crap, she says it's young people fault, which is bullshit because the majority of binge drinkers are above 25 years of age.
Panel is on, Ray Miller, Mike Williams and Michelle Boag. Ray notes the power of the alcohol lobby group. Michelle claims that we just have a behavior issue with booze and it's not the availability of booze, blah blah.
Shearer on bumbling his way through another interview. Seriously, get a stop watch and see if he can stay on topic for 30 seconds. He can't. I call it the 'Shearer countdown'. He's very optimistic with his claim of Labour being on top of each and every issue (he was very late getting to the PoA and Affco disputes that should have been owned by Labour but were owned by MANA). The question of his leadership arises and Cunliffe's speech is brought up. Shearer is very gracious about David Cunliffe's speech, and if he was smart he'd be wanting to go down this path far further because Cunliffe identified the issues that Labour need to tackle.
Very interesting discussion about Jones, David MUST know what the allegations are now and knows once they go public the implosion will be very damaging.
He's stumbling in the interview a bit now, every time he does that his confidence fluffs. Why the bloody hell haven't they locked him in a room with Brian Edwards for a month to train him not to do that???
Talking about competing against the Greens, he struggles to explain why people should see Labour as better, if he took a leaf out of Cunliffe's speech he could do this, without it he doesn't really provide any reason why not to vote Green.
It was a better interview than usual, but 6 months in Shearer still lacks the on air confidence, one gets the terrible feeling that Labour is going up in the polls despite Shearer, not because of him.
Mike claims people are starting to like David Shearer and that the Labour Party activists like him (that's just not true), Ray Miller notes that the Greens are eating into their vote and that Labour must work out a way to balance that new power situation. Michelle points out the media are very easy on the Greens and that they don't scrutinize them at all. If Boag is singing Shearer's praises, one must be worried. Ray points out that everyone knows what the Greens stand for, but no one knows what Labour stands for.
The issue of Class sizes are up, people's hero, Ian Leckie from NZEI is on because the education Minister is too frightened to front. The panel all not what a massive cock up this fiasco has become and that if National don't back down they will face a rolling level of protest unlike anything seen in this country with Michelle noting that students will be blockading Symonds street weekly.