Posts by Russell Brown

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  • Hard News: Dirty Politics,

    This is unbelievable.

    Herald story:

    Judith Collins was "unwise" to pass details of a public servant to blogger Cameron Slater and she is now on her last chance, Prime Minister John Key says.

    His warning comes just five months after an earlier final warning to his Justice Minister.

    Speaking before the Maori King's anniversary celebrations outside Turangawaewae in Ngaruawahia this afternoon, Mr Key said he could only take Ms Collins' word that she only leaked public servant Simon Pleasants' job title and also phone numbers and not his name to Slater.

    And here's the email, posted today by @whaledump. With Pleasants' name in it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this,

    Fisher has an interview with Slater:

    Whaleoil blogger Cameron Slater has described his man in the Beehive as "squeamish" and "gutless" for not fronting up to the media and talking about their relationship.

    And:

    Slater said his style of politics differed from many others. "I play politics like Fijians play rugby. My role is smashing your face into the ground.

    "Politics is a nasty despicable game and its played by nasty despicable people. Where's the surprise in this?

    "There's a lot of people want to be involved in politics but there are not very many people who want to say and do things. The vast majority of people are squeamish.

    "The squeamish people are gutless, they run for the hills, they don't speak to the media. And you have to question that - look at all the people who are running and hiding and not talking where I'm the one speaking to the media. If it all comes down to me I'm prepared to front."

    This may not be helping.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this, in reply to Kracklite,

    Because if some women could be raped and sexual predators are actively on the prowl at these “Princess Parties” with Farrar’s knowledge or even facilitation, the tasteful, gentlemanly thing to do is to keep quiet to maintain calm at the bowling club. Charming, Pete.

    The book gives no indication that Farrar was part of the disgusting rape conversation in the book, even if he ran the parties. And I really don't think he would have been. He can be faulted for being matey with these guys, but I do not think he would be part of that kind of talk.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this, in reply to Ianmac,

    Jared Savage wrote the post about Mr Liu and the $100,000 bottle of wine paid as a donation to the Labour Party. Even though it was wrong he never withdrew and apologised.

    As a reporter, it's not his role to apologise, even for a total screaming fuckup like that. It's his editors' -- and I think Tim Murphy got himself way too deep in that one. It was utterly ungracious of the paper, although there was a very grudging correction.

    I'd be more inclined to blame Savage for some of the language in that series -- particularly the constant reference to a staff dinner on a boat as "a riverboat trip".

    I wonder if Cameron Slater was his source?

    Given the context -- remember, there was an expedited OIA there too, and the Minister of Immigration lied about his handling of it -- I think it's a reasonable bet it came through similar channels. But the Herald itself was messed around on the OIA too.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    It’s over to you, Pete, to identify a left-leaning blogger with even a tenth of the venality and vindictiveness of WhaleOil.

    I feel kind of icky agreeing with Pete (sorry, Mr. George) but if our baseline is “not as bad as Whaleoil” that’s a depressingly low bar you can clear without lifting your feet.

    Which is really just a morally elevated way of saying "everyone does it". It's simply not true. What has happened in and around Whaleoil these past few years is actually of a different nature.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Oh, Jesus… Could you take a moment and really think about what you just did there?

    I think Keir may have been trying to make an artful point, but I deleted the comment. It was unnecessary and inappropriate.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Sorry, Russell, but that’s bullshit. They choose to and I thought grown-ups were expected to be honest about, and accountable for, their actions in this sad and sorry world. At least, that sounds an awful lot like what political journalists are happy to demand from everyone else on a daily basis.

    What are you saying? That journalists should never accept leaks and tips from politicians?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this,

    BTW, I gather David Fisher is working on a personal peace about dealing with Slater.

    Endnote 40 (p 146) for Chapter 4 says: "Slater gave various stories to the journalist David Fisher in that period [early 2012] including the Labour Party data story. They later fell out when Fisher wrote stories Slater did not like."

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Before we pat The Herald too hard on the back, this is the same Jared Savage who (as far as I’m aware) never retracted or apologized to anyone involved for implying Brown exerted “influence” to get Chuang employed by the Auckland City Art Gallery. Yes? So excuse me if I hold to my position that when you lie down with dogs, you not only get up with fleas but you’re not welcome in my house any more.

    It was a legitimate thing to report and the first person quoted in Savage's story is Chuang, saying she didn't believe the reference from the mayor's office (which was one of a number) was the reason she got the job. That's followed by the statement from the mayor's office. It's a straightforward report and sticks entirely to the facts.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: We can do better than this,

    Brook Sabin has just tweeted that Key now says Collins' actions were "unwise".

    Is that a bus I see coming?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18666 posts Report Reply

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