Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: How long the leash on the Fourth Estate?

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  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    are you OK?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16470 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    If you find Jeremy Clarkson so distasteful, try not to sound like him. M’kay?

    I think Clarkson tries to be funny in a "by the way, my suitcase is full of TNT" kind of way.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4154 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    You're soaking in it...*

    Golly, I guess I need to CALM DOWN AND LEARN HOW TO TAKE A JOKE (tm) but that wasn’t only tasteless but your cheap shot missed the intended target by a wide margin. And the irony becomes that little bit more tasty, given the context. If you find Jeremy Clarkson so distasteful, try not to sound like him. M’kay?

    Cuts both ways...

    Just so we have a right understanding, getting pissy with me is not wise unless you’re a huuuuuge fan of watersports. I will have another coffee or three to top up my bladder and flush the bile ducts then return fire. :)

    Y'know, a smiley doesn't really negate tasteless imagery - just sayin'

    *Swirl© - good for cleaning glasses, cutlery, pots and kettles...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4660 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Y’know, a smiley doesn’t really negate tasteless imagery – just sayin’

    Yes, Ian, I don’t claim to be any more a paragon of good taste than Mr. Clarkson (possibly significantly less so in some respects) but I’ve got limits he apparently doesn’t have. (Yeah, I don’t really find mock Nazi salutes and gags about the invasion of Poland terribly amusing. I’m dour and politically correct like that.) And I still fail to see what point Andre was trying to make with a pretty tasteless gag about the well-documented deaths of over a thousand human beings, except to take a cheap and well off target shot at the British Prime Minister. (I don’t think the Camerons are ever going to cross the Atlantic in steerage.)

    ETA: In Andre's defence, to be fair, I'd be a lot less fussed if How to Survive the Titanic or The Sinking of J. Bruce Ismay wasn't languishing on my bedside table. It's not a bad book by any measure, but infuriating and heart-breaking in equal measure. So many people died, and it didn't have to happen.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11859 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    See this is really just plain weird,
    Headline; Shearer the right man
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10770349
    ?

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to merc,

    See this is really just plain weird,

    A little presumptuous of Mr. Farrar to be handing out shadow cabinet portfolios, anyway. :) Don Brash staging a leadership coup before he’s even become an MP – that’s plain weird. But, yeah, I think David’s right (that’s David F. not C., S. or P.) – I don’t think very many people on the center-right would find Shearer intrinsically repellent. (For that matter, I'm not David Cunliffe's BFF but he wouldn't be a total oxygen thief either. Apart from his MILF-y brain-fart about Collins, he's not been a disaster in finance.) YMMV on whether that’s a good thing, but it certainly didn’t do National any harm replacing Brash with a leader who was couldn’t be easily dismissed as being on the flaming ideological fringes.

    And as for questions whether Shearer has the experience and “mongrel” for retail political leadership. At the risk of being accused of trolling Tom and Steve B., I remember one or two people saying the same about Key – and he didn’t do too badly. :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11859 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Weird because this guy Farrar gets headline advice op props (not opinion piece, national (sic) advice piece) way above many of his card carrying journalist peeps who probably wouldn't be allowed to write an article of this type let alone get it published.
    And Key yeah, on that last point you are right.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I don’t really find mock Nazi salutes and gags about the invasion of Poland terribly amusing. I’m dour and politically correct like that

    Well, as Spinal Tap said, it's a fine line between clever and stupid. There are plenty of actually funny comedians* who have inadvertently found themselves the wrong side of it.

    Contrast Ricky Gervais mocking the disabled whilst in character as David Brent, and his recent twitter mongface remarks.

    ETA: and 'if we want something more relevant to the Nazis: how about Mel Brooks and 'The Producers'. Plenty of Nazi salutes and Poland jokes in that.

    Fridays: still all bout the music

    *Clarkeson excluded from this set, obviously.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2354 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Rich Lock,

    Let’s cut the bullshit and get to the chase, because the BBC never will. There’s a straight line correlation between the Beeb’s tolerance for twatcockery and the ratings of the phallus concerned. (Another contributing factor, I suspect, is the likelihood of successfully being sued for breech of a multi-million pound contract.) After all the sound and fury over Jonathan Ross’ on-air arse-hattery, it wasn’t the BBC that severed its relationship with him – he got a better offer from ITV when his contract ran out.

    Any comparisons between Clarkson and Messers Henry & Laws don’t need to be made explicit, do they? :)

    ETA: Though, I guess you do have an interesting point, about how much of what people like Clarkson do is, to put it mildly, an enormous attention-troll. "Hell, who really cares what I think about this car? Doing a Nazi salute should be good for a half million spike in the ratings and some press." Which makes it that much worse, somehow.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11859 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Time for Space Launch System from XKCD, http://xkcd.com/
    A small proportion of NZer's have German ancestry, we don't say much. Interesting headline in the Press yesterday that Brits are coming to save the rebuild.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Immigration_to_New_Zealand

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    the Beeb's tolerance

    I would go so far as to say it is designed that way, literally racism by another name.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to merc,

    Time for Space Launch System from XKCD, http://xkcd.com/

    "That's a terrible lesson."

    Probably enough to note that the ones the dirty filthy commie Russkis built with the 'help' of their captured Nazi scientists didn't blow up.

    Communism: when you want it done right first time. :)

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2354 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I guess you do have an interesting point

    I think there's two different points:

    1) that more or less anything can be funny if handled well enough. And enough time has passed.

    2) That Clarkeson, Henry et al are all enormous attention-seeking twatcocks who are enabled by significant chunks of the population, but who shouldn't be enabled by organisations who should be held to a higher standard.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2354 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to merc,

    I would go so far as to say it is designed that way, literally racism by another name.

    I’m not so confortable going there, but when Carol Thatcher voiced an offensive racial slur off-air and declined to give a sufficiently strong public apology after it hit the media, the BBC couldn’t can her fast enough. And so they should have. But when Radio One DJ Chris Moyles opined on air the only thing Polish immigrants were good for was prostitution, ironing and car repairs? Calls female listeners dirty whores? Opines that he’d like to rip the head off a competitior and “poo down his neck”? Shares the charming fantasy of taking Charlotte Church’s virginity as a 16th birthday present? Fag-baits will Young?

    Meh, the proverbial wet bus ticket was brought out of storage ever damn time - and I guess being one of the most popular hosts on Radio One gets you a lot more slack than being a freelancer panellist on a modestly popular magazine show…

    In a weird way, being willing to indulge bigots on a ratings-based sliding scale when you know better is actually worse than being a bigoted idiot. Fools can learn; someone who knows that bigotry is wrong but just doesn’t care as long as the marketing and ad department are happy? Bastards.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11859 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Rich Lock,

    there's a starman, waiting...

    Probably enough to note that the ones the dirty filthy commie Russkis built with the 'help' of their captured Nazi scientists didn't blow up.

    Or get a Crowleyite magician to help...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4660 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    I can't forget that the broadcasters pay coin to people who make these racist remarks. It is a business relationship. I pay you to write a column, tv face, radio idjeet what have you, then you say crazy stuff, I say hmmm that's bad, you apologise, we all say it's bad, you are both contrite.
    Monday morning; more of same, whether you be publisher, politician, current or ex, Maori or not (Tamihere today), or Farrar, if you make racist, bigoted, sexist or partisan warblings. You have sold out for coin and the people who broadcast or publish this; likewise, govt. included.
    I'm getting kind of tired of pretending to think that all this nonsense from our Govt. and media is either,
    a) accidental or
    b) humour gone wrong or
    c) PC correctioning methodism
    Because it's not, it's just not.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I remember one or two people saying the same about Key

    What, that the smiling assasin was too nice for politics? pull the other one.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16470 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Sacha,

    My recall was that he, Key, was too untested for being leader, the same thing the Herald Farrar accuse Shearer of,
    "I do think David Shearer would be a better choice for Labour Leader, albeit a more risky choice as Shearer has not proven himself in Parliament."
    I'm getting too freaked out now about how tight the media and the Govt. are today in framing their P.O.V.
    I need a rest. It was my intention to try to discover a few things this election, having teens at or near voting age.
    But the abyss is staring back.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Rich Lock,

    http://xkcd.com/

    Historical ignorance and distortion on a large scale.

    - Von Braun’s level of nazi collaboration was about the same as that of the majority of Germans. They joined the army, helped in the war effort, ignored the fact there didn’t seem to be any Jewish people around any more.

    While shooting them or systematically starving them was considered as an option, it was rightly rejected.

    - The German rocket engineers were pretty much given design authority from the beginning, and certainly from the point that the US did anything more elaborate than assembling and firing a V2.

    - Russian rockets did blow up just as frequently as American ones.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4418 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Historical ignorance and distortion on a large scale.

    You're expecting historical accuracy from a three-panel comic? And from my two-line response on an internet forum?

    Has some sort of subtle humour in your post just gone over my head?

    Communism: when you want it done right first time.

    That bit was also a joke. Y'know, just for the record. I'm not actually advocating Communism.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2354 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Rich Lock,

    Has some sort of subtle humour in your post just gone over my head?

    Yes. Spend the weekend trying to work it out.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4418 posts Report Reply

  • Kracklite, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Von Braun’s level of nazi collaboration was about the same as that of the majority of Germans.

    Um… I hope that’s very dark irony. To wit: “…an estimated 20,000 Mittelbau-Dora forced laborers died: 9000 died from exhaustion and collapse, 350 were hanged (including 200 for sabotage), and the remainder died from disease or starvation (or were shot)”

    Annnd…

    Russian rockets did blow up just as frequently as American ones.

    Indeed, and quite spectacularly sometimes.

    Not to mention the sad fate of Phobos Grunt, which, alas, has not gone “BANG!”, but “phut!” (Mars missions seem particularly cursed, and rocket engineers joke nervously about the “Great Galactic Ghoul” that dines on Mars probes).

    The Library of Babel • Since Nov 2007 • 970 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Fibre helps

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16470 posts Report Reply

  • Kracklite, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Speaking of Crowley leads me to… Pratchett/ Gaiman’s Good Omens . According to that reputable tome, the M25 is in the shape of a Tibetan sigil for a curse, due to the efforts of a certain demon who “not so much fell as vaguely sauntered downward"… so I’d condemn Clarkson to an eternity orbiting that particular misplaced circle of Hell.

    The Library of Babel • Since Nov 2007 • 970 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Kracklite,

    To wit: “…an estimated 20,000 Mittelbau-Dora forced laborers died: 9000 died from exhaustion and collapse, 350 were hanged (including 200 for sabotage), and the remainder died from disease or starvation (or were shot)”

    Thanks for the reminder.

    The visitor who is willing to spend extravagant sums is rarely disappointed. Micro knows the secret doors to rock passages that lead through to Dora, the prison camp next to the Mittelwerke. Each member of the party is given his own electric lantern. There is hurried, basic instruction on what to do in case of any encounter with the dead. "Remember they were always on the defensive here. When the Americans liberated Dora, the prisoners who were still alive went on a rampage after the material -- they looted, they ate and drank themselves sick. For others, Death came like the American Army, and liberated them spiritually. So they're apt to be on a spiritual rampage now. Guard your thoughts. Use the natural balance of your mind against them. They'll be coming at you off-balance, remember."

    Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow

    And thanks for Tom Lehrer, although it was hardly comforting to hear him say in an interview when visting Australia in the late 90s that he felt that his own brand of satire had long been overtaken by events.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3370 posts Report Reply

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