Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Meet the New Bob

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  • Craig Ranapia,

    Bomber if you side with Garth McVicar you're no longer part of the Social Justice Movement.

    Gee, does he have to give back his decoder ring and stop using the secret handshakes? Seriously, Shep, if anything is harming the credibility of the 'Social Justice Movement' it's this kind of wing-nuttery. And while my points of agreement with Bomber could be counted on a closed fist, the shit he's been subjected to is downright creepy and has the dubious distinction of making the more fetid right-wingnuts who make Kiwiblog such an unpleasant experience look positively sedate.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11783 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    And this might not be directly pertinent to discussion of the Bill, but what about anon-i-bloggers? At least, I know David Farrar and Russell Brown; even have their home addresses and phone numbers tucked away in my address book. What about Idiot/Savant, the pseudonymous chaps at The Standard and Kiwiblogblog and their equivalents on the right?

    Well, in my case, I'm firmly covered by 5 (2) (g) - I'm an individual, the blog is non-commercial, and it's my own opinion, so none of it is electoral advertising, and therefore the disclosure requirements do not apply. Disclosure, spending limits etc only apply if you want to spend money, rather than merely being an active, informed, and opinionated citizen.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1625 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    The EFB may contribute to shifting campaigning toward the blogosphere amongst other places. Restrictions on spending will probably make things like getting supporters to blog, comment on blogs, ringing talkback and the traditional shoe leather campaigning more important.

    You mean... participate?

    I don't exactly see that as a flaw.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1625 posts Report Reply

  • tussock,

    I/S wrote:

    You mean... participate?

    Heh. I do believe that's exactly the problem the National party has with it. Unpaid participatory campaigns might hit trouble on the whole "tax cuts for the rich urgently needed" bandwagon. Especially if said rich have to put their name to it, quite a few "mainstream" kiwis don't seem to like following the demands of their betters for some reason. 8]

    Since Nov 2006 • 345 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Craig - I did throw in that his climate change input on RNZ was good, but I'm sick of Bomber excluding others from the Social Justice Movement, especially that they have been convicted of nothing. His respect for the rule of law is I can break it by scratching SUVs and tellin salacious gossip & hold no respect for your rights (subtext - its all about bomber). He would exclude Ghandi & Mandela by his criteria.

    As for what else is going on in his world I don't know - normal human compassion and all.

    He's sticking to a line that is defaming & damaging to people convicted of no crime who have a history of peaceful activisim. For that he's bringing it on himself.

    The "you have no place in SJM" is from Bomber. I would be interested as to how he buddied up to the hangman, was it all about getting close to the camneras?

    He really is shameless.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    Fair enough. But it looks like a stupid error in trying to cover the change to align the definition of broadcasting with the one in the Broadcasting Act. (What did the previous definition say? Did it include the use of loudspeakers etc?) I presume they were looking to cover those annoying campaign vehicles with loudspeakers.

    A really stupid error. The Greens have confirmed that the intention is as you suggest - they really are/were trying to regulate loud-hailers.

    Whilst the word "broadcast" was in the EFB as originally drafted, there was no definition. I think it has been suggested that some people on the committee thought it rather broad, such that it would include PA systems and loud-hailers. That's so broad that it's not even an interpretation I contemplated. I don't think it stacks up - maybe the definition of broadcast generally isn't as narrow as the Broadcasting Act, but thinking that yelling through a loud-hailer was always intended to be covered is way out there.

    Even if all that was intended with this change - adding the phrase "or bring to the notice of the public in any other manner" - was capturing buses with loud speakers, you've got to wonder "why?".

    Were they really concerned that a National Party flush with cash, but limited to spending $2.4m on advertising (or a group of EB, limited to $120,000), would hammer home their financial advantage by spending millions outside the cap on fleets of megaphoned cars and running their advertising over PAs at public events?

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2988 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    quite a few "mainstream" kiwis don't seem to like following the demands of their betters for some reason. 8]

    You forgot the quotes around "betters".

    No god, no queen, no lord, no master. We can leave all that baggage behind in Europe, thankyouverymuch (and by calling it baggage, hopefully the Nac Mac Feegle will steal it :)

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1625 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    He's sticking to a line that is defaming & damaging to people convicted of no crime who have a history of peaceful activisim. For that he's bringing it on himself.

    Defamation is a false accusation against someone. I haven't followed what he's been saying closely, but as far as I know, he hasn't gone and spilled a bunch of details of what people did, he's only said 'it' wasn't on and that middle NZ was going to be shocked. I'm not aware that he's said much at all about the details, nor am I aware that anything he has said is false. Most of what he's said seems to be opinion rather than fact.

    And damaging is all relative. What's been worse for the accused? 1. Bomber saying that some really bad shit went down, and it is disgusting and people are going to be pissed when they hear about it. 2. People hearing bits of it via the Dom Post. 3. Whatever was actually done that the police think they have evidence of.

    I'm thinking 2 at present, but 3 will be interesting to see.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6147 posts Report Reply

  • InternationalObserver,

    </off topic>

    His respect for the rule of law is 'I can break it by scratching SUVs'

    Funny how more damage is done to the environment by the bottled water industry than the SUV's. Why pick on SUV's when they're only marginally worse (in the greater scheme of things) than most other popular automobiles?

    Wanna save the environment? Keep a small cup in your handbag and pour yourself a drink from the tap, instead of lugging a plastic water bottle around.

    Since Jun 2007 • 909 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Shep:

    All I've heard Bomber say - and he repeated it in the PA Radio interview - is that in view when you pick up a gun, and start frothing about killing your political enemies, you've pretty comprehensively FUBAR'd any moral or political authority you ever had. And speaking from the right, I couldn't agree more - especially when you're faced with the more, shall we say, excitable on-line elements of the activist right.

    Heh. I do believe that's exactly the problem the National party has with it. Unpaid participatory campaigns might hit trouble on the whole "tax cuts for the rich urgently needed" bandwagon. Especially if said rich have to put their name to it, quite a few "mainstream" kiwis don't seem to like following the demands of their betters for some reason. 8]

    Really? Every campaign season since 1990 I've done a great deal of 'unpaid participatory' campaigning. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that if every political party had to (notionally) pay their volunteers minimum wage and have it count as an electioneering expense our campaigns would be measured in hours.

    No god, no queen, no lord, no master.

    But plenty of folks on all sides of the political spectrum who think the peasants are dozy fuckwits who must be protected from doubleplusungoodthinkk, because they're far too stupid and easily manipulated to make up their own minds... I wonder what it says about a healthy, functional democracy when so many folks in political, media and activist circles have a fundamental contempt for the hoi polloi.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11783 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Just a dumb question, hoping that someone might know: EVEN IF blogs were covered under EFB and had to acknowledge themselves as campaign contributors, so what? Would anything actually be stopped as a result of it? Surely the 'contribution' is whatever the cost of having a blog is, or a portion thereof. Which is totally minimal. For many who use, say, Blogger, it costs nothing at all. Indeed, for the big blogs it probably makes a small profit and therefore costs nothing.

    Please note this is an EVEN IF question. I don't know enough about the bill to guess if blogs actually are covered.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    Ben: even without the exemption, most ordinary political blogs would not be covered, as your time is not a declarable expense (again, the law wants people to participate). They would however be required to bear a declaration stating the author's name and address, just as any political pamphlet or placard has always had to around election time.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1625 posts Report Reply

  • Tim McKenzie,

    Well, in my case, I'm firmly covered by 5 (2) (g)

    That may be so, but I don't think every blogger can be so sure---not without legal advice, anyway.

    Disclosure, spending limits etc only apply if you want to spend money, rather than merely being an active, informed, and opinionated citizen.

    Not true. I've already quoted section 53(1), which makes it clear that you have to disclose your name and address even if you spend absolutely nothing. That also, I think, answers BenWilson's question:

    EVEN IF blogs were covered under EFB and had to acknowledge themselves as campaign contributors, so what? Would anything actually be stopped as a result of it?

    It would stop people who don't want their letterbox or house destroyed by local nutters who disagree with them.
    Don't get me wrong; disclosure is important, but I don't think every blogger, podcaster, or protest marcher should have to disclose their address.

    Tim
    <><

    Lower Hutt • Since Apr 2007 • 107 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Oh, well... I guess we will just leave the courts to sort it all out. Then depending on which way it all goes, someone will have years to froth about what a gang of partisan hacks the judiciary are.

    I'm only being slightly facetious in saying we might have had a marginally more serious piece of campaign finance reform legislation, if the Prime Minister had just declared the Exclusive Brethren a terrorist organisation and been done with it...

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11783 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    But I am pretty sure that some less reputable opponents than David wouldn't mind a press story or two getting the wrong end of the stick.

    Sigh.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1615 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Craig - Bomber made the claim he was in the know. This changes his statements from speculation to accusation.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Angus Robertson,

    You forgot the quotes around "betters".

    No god, no queen, no lord, no master.

    Except for politicians who demand the privilege of silencing their critics.

    Auckland • Since May 2007 • 984 posts Report Reply

  • Tim McKenzie,

    Don, how exactly do you think the Herald has the wrong end of the stick? Do you mean the bit about megaphones being covered, or do you mean the bit that suggests it's fine up to a certain spending limit?

    The select committee's report made it very clear that megaphones were indeed intended to be covered. See this from page 8:

    We recommend an amendment to ensure that it is clear that the meaning of ‘‘broadcast’’ in this bill is consistent with the Broadcasting Act 1989 (encompassing, for example, television and radio broadcasting). Other types of broadcasting, such as the use of loudspeakers and megaphones, would be captured by the new provision in paragraph (i).

    The real red herring is Lynne Pillay's suggestion that you can do what you like with a megaphone, as long as you don't spend too much. I've already quoted section 53(1), which makes it quite plain that you need to give your name and address, regardless of whether you spend anything at all. I've reiterated this once already.

    I feel like I should go read The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere, now.

    Tim
    <><

    Lower Hutt • Since Apr 2007 • 107 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Shep:

    I don't really want to go back and forth on this, but I suggest you actually listen to the interview he gave to Public Address Radio. Yes, I'd find it rather plausible that Bomber has rather more extensive - and certainly more credible - contacts in the 'activist community' than I do. I'm sure Russ will weigh in if my paraphrase is inaccurate or misleading, but I sure didn't get the impression that he was 'accusing' anyone of any thing. merely saying that perhaps some of the more vocal defenders were being a teeny tad disingenuous in their public statements, and perhaps the Police (who you could hardly describe as Bomber's favourite people on Earth) weren't absolutely out of line.

    And I'm getting a little of having to repeat this, but I agree with Bomber that the day anyone in this country who picks up a gun or starts talking about murdering their political enemies has given up any political or moral authority they ever had.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11783 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I/S

    They would however be required to bear a declaration stating the author's name and address

    So pretty much only the anonymous political blogger gets affected? That would certainly change the face of political blogging in NZ. I can see a lot more guarded speech and moderation coming if that went into law.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    Were they really concerned that a National Party flush with cash, but limited to spending $2.4m on advertising (or a group of EB, limited to $120,000), would hammer home their financial advantage by spending millions outside the cap on fleets of megaphoned cars and running their advertising over PAs at public events?

    Maybe they were: ACT had some guy in a van driving around doing this during the last election and its a pretty common political advertising technique in other countries - the communists in Japan do it all year round; I'm not sure how effective this would be in New Zealand though, its more likely to alienate voters than persuade them.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 895 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I've often wondered about the etymology of Bomber's name. From the last few weeks it seems like a rugby metaphor, where he likes to just kick the ball really high, and then watch as his team tries desperately to get it back.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    This just in: the reservation list for the Awards/Event is closed now. If you've emailed before now, you're in in theory, and in practice you'll need to get there before 7pm before we throw out the list and make it first-in-first-served.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 723 posts Report Reply

  • Margaret B,

    The practice of having to have your real name and address on your political blog would have a very definite chilling effect, particularly on those who maintain pseudonyms now because of possible consequences such as impact on their employment or stalking. I think this could be particularly problematic for woman political bloggers, and others who don't fit into the dominant white heterosexual male demographic.

    For example there was a female right-wing blogger who blogged under her own name until some creep started mentioning that he knew where she worked and that he was going to make trouble for her at the company and so on. She reinvented herself under a pseudonym.

    It seems to me what might be necessary here is a set of guidelines for how the law is intended to be interpreted. Something like the fact sheets that some of those organisations (like the organisation Deborah Morris heads these days, sorry I can't remember the name) put out during the s59 debate.

    Since Oct 2007 • 59 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Craig - I disagree and will leave it there.

    Bomber states it was given to him by his student editor from:

    Bombastic
    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Bombastic

    And I can't disagree just his rantings may have an impact on innocent lives rather than meaningless BS he's known for.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

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