Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Winning the RWC: it's complicated

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  • Sacha,

    That rugby history series I mentioned is on Maori TV at 8.30 pm tonight. Called "The Game of Our Lives".

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    New Zealand singers and dancers (many of whom are, yes, among the best in the world at what they do) being sneered at

    Examples?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Sacha,

    I will go dig out a more than usually stupid Michael Laws column on the subject of arts funding - 'cause, you know, all those lazy pooves need to stop bludging and get a real job, or something. If you insist. I usually insist on being paid for degrading and dispirited labour like that,

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Littlewood, in reply to John Armstrong,

    Absolutely. I've developed a strong loyalty to Maori TV's coverage during this tournament, which was only strengthened on Saturday when I heard (during TV1's buildup to the first semifinal) Tane Randall claim that he had 'a sneaking suspicion that France might play like France'. Those are your tax dollars paying for such insights folks. Give me Glen Osbourne's constant teasing self-promotion any day.

    I've also been quietly enjoying Peter Fitzsimon's apparently sincere attempts to plug his fellow commentators' for insights into Te Reo and various aspects of Maoritanga in general. Given the general thrust of the opening ceremony, Maori TV has just felt like the natural place to watch the Cup. Capital 'C' intended..

    Yes, Maori TV's congenial and good-humoured style "sounds like us" to borrow a tagline from another state-owned broadcaster. I think SKY TV has been professional, but the laidback yet informative approach of Maori TV's coverage has been (to use a rugby cliche) "the winner on the day".

    Also, I've been loving The Crowd Goes Wild over the last month or so. Mark Richardson was on stupendous form last night, there was that great riff about how he would offer Brad Thorn a spot on his "motorcycle club", and his co-presenters' ribbing that he lives in "an affluent area". All of the show's regulars have been stars- good-humoured, self-mocking and in love with sport but willing to puncture a lot of the hype- although Mark Ellis has looked a bit out of place at times.

    As for the rugby, I don't think I've felt so nervous before a big match before. I was stewing about it for at least a couple of days before it. But what a performance!

    I would also like to thank Emma for putting up with my 'minute-by-minute' text updates of each ABs match during the RWC.

    I've seen the ABs play more expansively, and I've certainly seen them win more comprehensively against quality opposition, but I don't think I've ever seen them more fired up and committed to every aspect of their play. They seemed to have all the likely options worked out (the targeting of Cooper and Pocock was obviously pre-planned), and Dagg, Jane and Kahui were just magnificent, running and diving at everything.

    The tackling from McCaw and Thorn was immense, and as long as we win the RWC, I hope to see that Brad Thorn "fist pump" played over and over. A telling moment.

    Today, Tomorrow, Timaru • Since Jan 2007 • 443 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Michael Laws column

    say no more. please.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Tagged...

    "sounds like us"

    That's the one I was trying to remember when the Bomber Bradbury thang happened - I noticed National Radio no longer uses that at all - probably replaced by the silent one (that only the dogs of war can hear) for the Panel - "Sounds just Right!"

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5058 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Littlewood, in reply to Sacha,

    That rugby history series I mentioned is on Maori TV at 8.30 pm tonight. Called "The Game of Our Lives".

    I really wish they would update that series. It seems to poignantly finish just on the dawn of professionalism. It's just as fascinating as a social documentary as it is a sporting one- particularly how it touches upon how the New Zealand workforce changed dramatically in the 1980s-1990s, and how rugby changed with it.

    "The Wait of A Nation" (which screened afterwards), felt a bit like a talking-heads promo for the latest RWC campaign at times, but it was well put together, and not too overdone, and featured good contributions from everyone, particularly Anton Oliver and Gregor Paul.

    They must've caught Graham Henry on a good day too- he was smiling throughout most of his segments!

    Today, Tomorrow, Timaru • Since Jan 2007 • 443 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    Must go and search the online libraries to watch these series.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • webweaver,

    Back to the issue of domestic violence again (it's something I've been doing a lot of reading about recently).

    There have been a couple of comments in this thread about the relationship between alcohol and domestic violence and I wanted to clarify something...

    One of the (many) myths around domestic abuse is that "the drink made him do it". It's an excuse you hear a lot from violent men - "I was so drunk I didn't know what I was doing" or "I was drunk and I just lost control" or whatever. What they are implying is that the violence is not really their fault - that it was caused by an external force (in this case alcohol) and that they are therefore not really responsible for their actions.

    From the First formative research project report on the Are You OK? website (PDF, page 12):

    While those working with perpetrators accept that alcohol can be a contributing factor to violence, it is generally not accepted as a justification or reason for violence

    When we say that domestic violence is caused by alcohol, we're allowing the perpetrator to excuse his violent behaviour. Research with domestic abusers clearly shows that domestic violence of all kinds (physical, psychological and sexual) is all about power, domination and control. It's not at all about "losing control".

    People who abuse their partners are not blinded by rage, judgmentally impaired by alcohol or pushed to breaking point by their partners. They each make a choice about whether or not to behave abusively, and while some might go off and get drunk before they finally choose to explode, alcohol is neither an excuse for domestic violence nor the primary cause of it.

    By accepting the myth that alcohol causes domestic violence we are tacitly allowing perpetrators to absolve themselves of responsibility - and if we're to make a dent in our appalling domestic violence statistics, we have to work as a society to change attitudes across the board - and that includes examining the accuracy of the myths that surround it.

    By the way, the It's Not OK campaign (big ups to Russell for his involvement) appears to be working:

    An article recently published in the international journal Trauma, Violence and Abuse, and identifies "It's not OK" as a leading example of effective behaviour change campaigns aimed at perpetrators of domestic/family violence.

    OK, end of PSA. Back to the rugby :)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 329 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg, in reply to webweaver,

    I was hoping somebody would post something like this. Thank you.

    A few beers doesn't turn me or most people I know into a thug.

    I don't hit people when drunk (which is such an irregular event that I can count the times in recent decades on my fingers) and have never felt the urge to do so. Neither do I rape, abuse or need to be subdued.

    Others do, but they do it when sober too, or at least have the latent ability to do so. I've had to deal with violent drunks quite a few times over the years and mostly they're the sort of people who are likely to be somewhat aggressive, or dysfunctional in other ways, when sober.

    We are an incredibly violent society for whatever reason - scarily so. Alcohol may aggravate this but it's hardy the root cause.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3208 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to webweaver,

    I don't see a claim that alcohol *causes* family violence - as you say, it's just a disinhibitor.

    It was argued here that a spike in reported levels of such violence was *more associated with* activities involving alcohol consumption *than with* sport as such. I'm not aware of research about that, but presumably it exists somewhere.

    New Zealanders do not take enough collective or personal responsibility for our relationship with either alcohol or violence. I agree that's propped up by a series of myths.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    RWC tournament public spending figures coming in.

    Budget blowouts have pushed public spending on the Rugby World Cup well above $200 million - without counting $555 million in stadium upgrades and $39 million in direct losses from hosting the tournament.
    ...

    This week Prime Minister John Key defended the country's investment in the World Cup, saying it was "$39 million well spent".

    "Yes, the country has spent quite a bit of money upgrading its stadia, but they're long-term assets and I think for the marketing of New Zealand, the promotion of New Zealand, it's been well and truly worth it," he said.

    Public expenses Mr Key did not cite include advertising, promotional events, match-day entertainment, volunteer co-ordination, signage, extra staff, improvements to urban facilities, VIP hosting and fan zones.

    The bills add up to $220 million, at least $7.8 million more than budgeted six months ago - with much accounting left to be done.

    Most of the blowout is on the Auckland waterfront, where $5.5 million more was spent after its fan zone failed to cope with opening-night crowds.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    I don’t see a claim that alcohol *causes* family violence – as you say, it’s just a disinhibitor.

    It was argued here that a spike in reported levels of such violence was *more associated with* activities involving alcohol consumption *than with* sport as such. I’m not aware of research about that, but presumably it exists somewhere.

    Alcohol Healthwatch has pages of citations with respect to the association between alcohol and violent crime.

    In New Zealand, alcohol is a factor in a third of family violence and half of all serious violence. I don't think acknowledging that is using alcohol as an excuse. It's just a fact.

    But, yeah, this possibly isn't the right thread to be going into this in depth.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18969 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    RWC tournament public spending figures coming in.

    I wish they’d itemised them better:

    Public expenses Mr Key did not cite include advertising, promotional events, match-day entertainment, volunteer co-ordination, signage, extra staff, improvements to urban facilities, VIP hosting and fan zones.

    What, for example, are the “improvements to urban facilities”? How big a part of the bill are they? Are they of enduring benefit?

    I hope relatively little was spent on “VIP hosting” – but fan zones are actually there for New Zealanders, and I think government does have some duty to make public provision for people, if only for safety reasons.

    ETA: The Herald's April story has some more detail:

    About $310 million will be spent on the tournament's operational costs and fees,

    Offset by ticket sales, so a $39m shortfall, two thirds cover by the taxpayer.

    $130 million on upgrades to ports and airports

    Infrastructure, then.

    $107 million on local expenditure, $41 million on the activities of public agencies, $40.3 million on World Cup-related facilities (including the "Cloud" on Queens Wharf ) and $9.5 million on events

    The last including things like this week's Style Pasifika showcase.

    Like I said, it'd be useful to see it itemized properly.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18969 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    "improvements to urban facilities"

    That might even be the most useful and widespread enduring benefit.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    more waving from the metaphorshore...
    Metaphors to be collected in a huge repository by US Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity:

    The Metaphor Program is divided into two phases, totaling 60 months, and is intended to begin in November 2011.
    Understanding language is a hot topic amongst the government research folks. Last year you may recall, the military’s research folks at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency said they wanted to know about how stories or narratives influence human behavior. To this end, DARPA hosted a workshop called “Stories, Neuroscience and Experimental Technologies (STORyNET): Analysis and Decomposition of Narratives in Security Contexts.”

    A great NLP forward?
    Nice work if you can get it...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5058 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    DARPA needs poets,

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I think Sasha wanted a list of the dancers and singers names so he can look out for them. Or at least that's the bit I'd be interested in.

    No-one wants to make you read Laws - that would be too cruel

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3419 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Without wishing to deter you from your noble path, TV does look bloody good these days.

    Now if only the actual content was just as good...

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4355 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Simon Grigg,

    Given that I really only expressed my disinterest to about a dozen or so people I didn’t know well, and only did so after being asked a question I wasn’t willing to lie in response to, that’s pretty disheartening and perhaps indicates a side of the national character that has also been accentuated by these games.

    The ghost of Foreskin's Lament still seems to walk amoung us.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4355 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    I haven't seen any such 'sneering', so am curious. Inflicting Lhaws on us seems too far to go for one example, however.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16771 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Now if only the actual content was just as good...

    SOHO Channel turning up end of this month on Sky is going to have a bunch of good shows on it - many of which have been talked up on PAS before.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6205 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    we, we, we will overcome...
    Joe Bennett weighs in on the ABs...

    The balletic Jane had passed to the electric Dagg (which sounds like an agricultural device). Dagg set off upfield, leaving a litter of yellow jerseys writhing on the turf. He went with the pace and sizzle that comes only with youth. Somehow, one of the Aussies - though emphatically not the one with the snake-eyes - managed to take him down, but then the All Black bruiser boys, led by Brad I-don't-do-reverse Thorn, rumbled up like a tank division.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5058 posts Report Reply

  • John Armstrong, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    To this end, DARPA hosted a workshop called “Stories, Neuroscience and Experimental Technologies (STORyNET): Analysis and Decomposition of Narratives in Security Contexts.”

    Jesus that is properly frightening. It's bad enough seeing the Herald publishing wilfully misleading photographs of balls flying between uprights simply to reinforce the 'Wayne Barnes is Incompetent' narrative.. (He said, desperately trying to stick vaguely to topic..)

    Although, I suppose in another way it's just business as usual but with a fancier name.

    Hamilton • Since Nov 2007 • 132 posts Report Reply

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