Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Morning in Auckland

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  • Matthew Poole,

    And for the record, I reckon Clark would have a) declined to be interviewed by that particular twat and b), if forced for some reason, would have reacted with instant and sharp condemnation of his blatantly racist, stupid and obnoxious comment.

    I think that Helen Clark would've ripped PH a new one, live and in colour, had he said something like that while interviewing her. Poll-following shrinking violet she is not when it comes to matters like overt racism, and I imagine the phone would've been glowing several shades of incandescent rage by the time she finished telling Ellis just what she thought of TVNZ's continued employment of such an obnoxious twatcock.

    Hopefully some advertisers will threaten to pull their slots if Henry doesn't get the boot, because that's what it'll take to get rid of him. Holmes' "cheeky darky" comment cost TVNZ a seven-figure sponsorship deal with Mitsubishi, and that was more of a brain fart than the continued rantings of an unashamed hick bigot. Once Henry's a bottom line liability, his utility is done.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3889 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I suspect that Helen would 'own' the interview to a degree that Henry would never make that kind of comment.

    True, although he never lost a chance to make a buffoon out of himself even with Helen Clark. He's a lot like Sacha Baron Cohen in that respect, the more of a dick he makes of himself, the more he's actually mocking whoever he is in the presence of.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg,

    And for the record, I reckon Clark would have ...

    I suspect that Helen would 'own' the interview to a degree that Henry would never make that kind of comment.

    I think that Helen Clark would've ripped PH a new one ...

    Not to mention what Chuck Norris would have done. Just sayin...

    Lower Grey Lynn • Since Jul 2009 • 789 posts Report Reply

  • dyan campbell,

    Thank you and great respect to Ben Gracewood - you did a good and effective thing when you made a stand. You Gracewoods are always doing something exceptionally well.

    And since Paul Henry is suspended I hope this means Ben's role as gadget reviewer is reinstated.

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 595 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    if Henry doesn't get the boot

    He won't get the boot. He is an employee and has rights, one of which is due process. That is, he f'd up and he has been formally censured and warned. If/when he f's up again then he can and will be fired. Until then TVNZ can't get rid of him without a lawsuit. They can, of course, take him off air but they would still have to pay him.

    he never lost a chance to make a buffoon out of himself even with Helen Clark

    Sadly much as I admire Helen Clark she fell short when submitting to weekly interviews with Henry. Henry was just as odious when interviewing Clark and she still turned up each week for the publicity. She was a politician not a saint.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3223 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I would hope the PM's office has had subsequent "discussions" with TVNZ though. Something along the lines of: "The PM's not going on that f7cking show again..."

    Which I wish both Key and Clark had done years back -- but I'd suggest some folks who say Key and Goff should have demanded his resignation should ask whether it would have been helpful if they'd given Henry a pretext to start claiming his suspension was motivated by political pressure on a state-owned broadcaster. Think that would have been a distraction best done without.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11786 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Outrager's misfortune...

    Once Henry's a bottom line liability,
    his utility is done.

    Suspending him without pay, may actually make him notice the punishment that his "builders' cracks"* have earned him...

    *Apologies to any individual builders who may be offended by that generalisation, I was meaning the wolf-whistling boorish types, with loose belts....

    ...oh hell, it's a minefield out there
    - shining wit is a spoonerism away from offence!
    <tip-o-the-hat to Andrew Scott ;- ) >

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4555 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    All due respect to you Craig, I'm not sure I'm any less uncomfortable being a 'blameless vagina' than a 'twat'.

    @Sally Jones: With equally due and sincere respect, please accept my apology for the man-tronage (a mash up of man-splaining and head-patting from a place of male privilege). My only defence is that the PAS Women's XV has been instrumental in cluing me up to how gendered invective still is. Or put another way, why is it that the one c-word that is universally offensive and unacceptable (at least, according to the BSA) isn't "cock", but the vulgarism for female genitalia that rhymes with hunt?

    It offends me - women, of course, are perfectly capable of being offended, or not, on their own behalf. That's something else the PAS Women's XV gets pretty strident about. :)

    I think that Helen Clark would've ripped PH a new one, live and in colour, had he said something like that while interviewing her. Poll-following shrinking violet she is not when it comes to matters like overt racism, and I imagine the phone would've been glowing several shades of incandescent rage by the time she finished telling Ellis just what she thought of TVNZ's continued employment of such an obnoxious twatcock.

    Oh, you mean like she did with a certain cheeky whitey who happened to host the top-rating breakfast radio show in the country? Wait a mo'... that's not what happened at all.

    And Clark, whatever else I thought of her, wasn't stupid - which would be the only word to describe the Prime Minister ringing up the head of TVNZ's news/current affairs division and demanding he sack someone.

    I yield to nobody in my utter contempt for Henry, but let's all take a deep breath and get a little reality back into the room. I don't want the Prime Minister -- any Prime Minister -- trying to pull a Muldoon, even if the object is a loathsome turd like Henry. That would cause more problems that it solved.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11786 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Michie,

    I don't know why anyone would submit to an interview if Henry might be the interviewer without having a rejoiner (witty or otherwise) in mind for if he stepped off the deep end, as he does so so often.

    If anyone else wants to play, mine would be "That's one for your blog Paul" (especially with his low opinion of bloggers).

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 544 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    So Key wimped out of doing bFM because he didn't want to be questioned by Matt Heath?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4362 posts Report Reply

  • Pat Hackett,

    Hey Craig - you should contact The Standard for payment of residuals since they have made up a new word with your name:

    Eventually, (to misuse one of my favourite lines from “Californication”) he [sprout: deleted on the grounds that it sounds too much like a Craig Ranapiaism] your cat.

    http://thestandard.org.nz/breakfast-bigot-suspended/

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 95 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Not sure if this had been noticed before lunch
    Goff comments

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5924 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    @Andre

    when (usually) white New Zealanders describe themselves as "New Zealanders" without qualification.

    I do identify as a New Zealander without further ethnic/racial/national qualification. You are free to identify otherwise.

    It's the underlying assumption that being a New Zealander means belonging to a very specific ethnic background that is nevertheless only ever implied.

    Anyone who wishes to identify as a New Zealander without further qualification should be free to do so.

    I still get pissed off remembering all the times I was asked to provide "proof that [I was] a New Zealand citizen" when applying for jobs for no other reason than the way my name sounds.

    Are you sure it wasn't standard practice for applicants who didn't specify their citizenship/immigration status in their application?

    One application I dealt with recently included a required question: "Are you the holder of NZ permanent residency or a valid work permit?"

    There wasn't even the option of specifying NZ citizen.

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Hey Craig - you should contact The Standard for payment of residuals since they have made up a new word with your name:

    I affectionately call the mole just above my left arse cheek 'The Standard', because it's ugly, serves no useful function and may well turn out to be a malignant cancer. They're welcome to take my name in vain -- it's when they say something nice I'll be calling Sue, Grabbit and Runne.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11786 posts Report Reply

  • Marcus Turner,

    Threadjack with apologies.

    (Lost Russell's address.)

    Interesting article on "Autism Cures" in the latest Scientific Amercian.

    Since Nov 2006 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    Part gypsy myself - the original statement and the apology both offended me...

    Some of Paul Henry's friends are Jewish, but...

    Seriously though, to those who say "harden up, ya PC wankers!", Mr Henry's latest sewage-mouthing reminds me all too well of my high school experiences. Not just any old high school, but a reputed First Four Ships/Ivy League one.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4065 posts Report Reply

  • vangam,

    Let us not forget that John Key also gave Paul Henry an assurance that he would not choose Jeanette Fitzsimmons for Governer-General, whereas a professional would've told Mr Henry that every candidate gets judged on their merits and an announcement will be made in due course.

    Rangiora • Since Jun 2007 • 103 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Hey Craig - you should contact The Standard for payment of residuals since they have made up a new word with your name:

    Way back I was working on a coffee table book of and called "Ranapianisms", but his contributions began to dry up rendering it "another useless idea of Sofie's". I have several by the way :)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5924 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Seriously though, to those who say "harden up, ya PC wankers!"...

    ... they should be reminded a real hard bastard (or bitch - let's not be sexist) only insults people who are close enough to respond with a belt in the mouth.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11786 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    Oh, you mean like she did with a certain cheeky whitey who happened to host the top-rating breakfast radio show in the country?

    Refresh my memory, was Clark on air and being interviewed at the time the infamous comment was made?

    Also, I don't recall Holmes being routinely subjected to upheld complaints about his on-air utterances. It's not like Henry's a first offender who should be given the benefit of the doubt.

    Apart from that though, yeah, totally similar situations.

    He won't get the boot. He is an employee and has rights, one of which is due process. That is, he f'd up and he has been formally censured and warned. If/when he f's up again then he can and will be fired.

    If TVNZ haven't given him warnings before, then that says far, far more about how they view his behaviour than any public statements they may make. At some point repeated complaints sustained by the BSA has to count for something.
    And you're assuming that the next time will see him sacked. If this couldn't be argued as serious misconduct (and if it affects TVNZ's bottom line then that's about as serious as it gets, short of indecent or violent behaviour against co-workers/guests) then I cannot see what he could possibly do that would qualify. Well, OK, I can, but I don't think he'd actually quite go there.

    As a comparison, Holmes offered to resign over his comment. Henry lacks the spine and sense of honour required for a similar course of action.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3889 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    If I was just right this very minute switching on Breakfast (I couldn't "right this very minute" I know....but) and I saw and heard that twirp for the very first time.

    Well.

    Warning: Sarcasm/"joke"/satire coming up.

    I could have said: "When did that shrimp arsed whinging Pom turn up?" Looks like a Pom. Sounds like a Pom. We all hate Poms. They should go back to where they come from. What have they done for us? Why should HE be on OUR morning TV?

    Finished.

    It's so easy to denigrate. As folk have pointed out, there is always a voice like Henry's around and there will always be those that will react to such a voice. It's so easy to seed such attitudes as well. Parents invariably are the source of that initial seed. We were discussing this at tea and a workmate was telling a story of trying to identify a girl in her class. "Bit taller than me, round faced, blah blah blah," "Oh", says Mum, "You mean the black girl?" Taadaaa! Our talker had no idea that the colour of her skin meant she was someone, "something" different. But from then on, she knew about colour.

    Fascinating.

    Could it be that the only way out of this is to ban the first overseas trips any New Zealander (real one) takes is never to Australia. It is so like ours that it can never count as "foreign travel". We all need to see for ourselves that there are others in this world that demand respect (including Ockers BTW). They will then see that: We all have mothers; We all are trying to make our way in this world; We all have a right to be here on this Earth.

    They might then realise there are migrants in all our roots and ....and maybe - hopefully - they won't care.

    And we are only 2000ish generations from being from the same small family for f*&ks sake. It's time to grow up. It's getting crowded.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Jimmy Southgate,

    Henry lacks the spine and sense of honour required for a similar course of action.

    Its a bit stink, but I suspect he feels he's probably got enough support that he can get away with this sort of thing. His People's Choice award probably speaks to that conviction.

    Wellingtown • Since Nov 2006 • 100 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    Its a bit stink, but I suspect he feels he's probably got enough support that he can get away with this sort of thing

    Holmes doubtless would've had similar levels of support - his radio and TV shows both remained high-rating after the CD comment - but he still offered to resign.
    Much as I disagree with Holmes on many things, that's a level of class to which Henry can only aspire.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3889 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    @dc_red:

    Anyone who wishes to identify as a New Zealander without further qualification should be free to do so.

    Oh, I agree. I have absolutely no issue with what people call themselves, just like I'd have no issue with someone answering the question "Are you a man or a woman?" with "I'm a human being."

    I do have a problem with people who suggest that being a "New Zealander" is an ethnicity, however. It's not. It's either a refusal to define oneself in terms of ethnicity at all (which is valid), or it is a subtle way of reinforcing the view that "real New Zealanders" are white immigrants from the UK and Ireland (which is not valid, and is precisely what Paul Henry's comments were aimed at.)

    What I'm unhappy with is the unspoken belief that to be a "real New Zealander" you have to give up your qualifying description of who you are as a New Zealander: you can't be a "Maori New Zealander" or a "Pakeha New Zealander" or a "French New Zealander" or an "Indian New Zealander" because these qualifiers somehow make you less of a New Zealander in the process. That is, fundamentally, what I object to-I am just as much a New Zealander for identifying as a pakeha as my sister is for identifying as Maori. Our differences don't make our nationality any less valid for either of us.

    Are you sure it wasn't standard practice for applicants who didn't specify their citizenship/immigration status in their application?

    In one case I specifically asked why I was being asked for this "evidence" when it happened, and was told that they didn't normally need it with "New Zealanders" but that they needed to be sure I was legally allowed to work because of my "unusual name". These were low-paying hospitality jobs where a high proportion of the applicants were immigrants, so superficially it makes sense to request this sort of thing, but I spoke to more than one employee with an Anglo-Saxon name who said they didn't have to provide anything like the documents I did (in the end, I took to carrying my birth certificate around with me, just to prove I was indeed born in Lower Hutt.)

    If I'd been a bit older, and a bit less desperate for money to pay the rent, I'd have made a fuss, but this was 10-15 years ago now. I'm sure that sort of thing still happens from time to time.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 846 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Also, I don't recall Holmes being routinely subjected to upheld complaints about his on-air utterances.

    @Matthew: In the story you linked it, it was noted the reason the BSA complaints weren't upheld was because the action taken by The Radio Network (not exactly known for keeping their shock jocks on a short choke-chain) was deemed sufficient. So, a wee bit of a hand-wave there.

    Much as I disagree with Holmes on many things, that's a level of class to which Henry can only aspire.

    Meh... I'm probably going to fire up Google, and read a lot of shit that makes me sad and angry but there's nothing "classy" about offering a resignation you know isn't going to be accepted. (If Holmes had resigned, rather than been sacked, I presume TRN would have had to buy out his not insubstantial contract. And while Bill Francis is in many ways a highly admirable man -- not least his fierce loyalty to his crew -- I wish he'd enabled and protected shock jocks like Holmes less energetically over his career.

    BSA decisions or not, Paul Holmes had quite a history of shock jock arse-hattery on his own account and The Radio Network had been enabling and excusing every step of the way.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11786 posts Report Reply

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