Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Morning in Auckland

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  • Caleb D'Anvers,

    What should "Canadians" be called, then? I'm surrounded by them at the moment ... all different hues, and a tremendous diversity of family names too of course.

    "Canadians." Of course. But that's a nationality, not an ethnicity. It's kind of an important distinction.

    East Greenwich • Since Mar 2008 • 411 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    I don't know about you, but I'd like this month's "I hate Paul Henry" to be over now.

    Perhaps a lie down and a nice cup of tea? It's precisely that attitude that allows the likes of Henry to get away with what he does.
    That's why he doesn't like being told he's wrong. Because it usually just goes away. This time he is a target from the media, his peers along with the public. Actually I want the guy to understand that his narcissistic behaviour is not acceptable ever on the state owned TV that he is allowed to be on, or he can fuck off.
    Can you tell I don't particularly like this man. :)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5690 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew C,

    @Marcus Turner

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

    Thanks for pointing this out. Man the cranks are certainly good at mobilising the troops into the comment zone.

    I wonder if Orac will give it a once over.

    Auckland • Since May 2008 • 121 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg,

    TVNZ can lance the boil by firing the prick as soon as they decide to take seriously the reaction of the public whose eyeballs they sell to advertisers...

    Call me cynical (lots of people do), but in the world of tv-ratings I believe he has only increased his value to TVNZ.

    He has (unintentionally) set off a number of interesting discussions. A bit like a somewhat useful troll.

    Lower Grey Lynn • Since Jul 2009 • 782 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    Hey look over there----> The Narcissist has spoken

    Pissing off Paul Henry: priceless.

    There are some things money can't buy. For everything else...

    Seriously though, are we seeing a tipping point for the model that has dominated TVNZ thinking for the past 20 years? What sets this apart from the usual dross is that overseas outlets now know more about it.

    It always amuses me when the self-proclaimed anti-PC brigade finds its own blowtorch used on them.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 3894 posts Report Reply

  • Grant McDougall,

    It won't be nice, but I've a horrible feeling he'll go absolutely troppo very soon after going back on air. What the fall-out from that will be, I don't know.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 548 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew C,

    [side thread jack]
    @hilarystace

    [side threadjack] Marcus have you got a link to that article? I'm really interested as to why people put their kids through non-evidence based treatments

    An american with interest in this once explained his view of why to me along the lines of: in america there is an underlying belief that if anything bad happens to you, you should be able to seek remedy. And that also sort of implies that if something bad happens to you and you can blame someone/something, then that someone/something caused the problem. And if something caused the problem, then something exists that can be unwound or fixed.

    I've done a fairly bad job of repeating his line of reasoning, but hopefully you get the drift.

    So there is this underlying belief that something must exist which they can try and fix/cure. And as conventional medicine doesn't offer fixes, they turn to alternative therapies.

    Fringe frenzy: As many at 75 percent of autistic children are receiving alternative treatments not developed by conventional medicine, which are often bogus.

    If this stat is real, that's pretty amazing...

    Auckland • Since May 2008 • 121 posts Report Reply

  • David Hood,

    And this is why the census has suggested options along with a write in space.

    If the census opts purely for predefined categories, then you are measuring how people assign themselves (or not) within the framework dictated to them, rather than what the population might think about the matter. In NZ the ethnicity question measures what broader identities people consider that they belong to, not what category you might place them in. That you consider some of their categories meaningless means that you have a different value judgement to them about the label and its meaning, but by collecting it (for at least those people who felt strongly enough to write into the space) it at least shows that the idea is contested.

    To take an example I am more familiar with, NZ Electoral Rolls up until 1905 listed women's occupation. After 1905 they only listed marital status. This change in recording, from self identification to a fixed list of options, has dramatically shaped what we know about women of the time from electoral roll sources.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 824 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    and now I can see his ancestral roots showing

    Nope - like Messers Hosking and Laws, he's suddenly rediscovered a regard for privacy when someone's pawing through his figurative panty drawer.

    Henry should spend some of his gardening leave reading Baudelaire:

    La sottise, l'erreur, le péché, la lésine,
    Occupent nos esprits et travaillent nos corps,
    Et nous alimentons nos aimables remords,
    Comme les mendiants nourrissent leur vermine.

    Nos péchés sont têtus, nos repentirs sont lâches;
    Nous nous faisons payer grassement nos aveux,
    Et nous rentrons gaiement dans le chemin bourbeux,
    Croyant par de vils pleurs laver toutes nos taches.

    [Folly, depravity, greed, mortal sin
    Invade our souls and rack our flesh; we feed
    Our gentle guilt, gracious regrets, that breed
    Like vermin glutting on foul beggars' skin.

    Our sins are stubborn; our repentance, faint.
    We take a handsome price for our confession,
    Happy once more to wallow in transgression,
    Thinking vile tears will cleanse us of all taint.]

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11614 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Seriously though, are we seeing a tipping point for the model that has dominated TVNZ thinking for the past 20 years?

    Hmm... not yet. Rick Ellis yesterday could have, IMO, clarified that Brotherston's statement was an unusual lapse; accurate, per se, but not at all relevant - in fact, specifically not relevant.

    The odd idea that has escaped from the collective braincage; namely that TNNZ's position is that "We're all thinking that Anand Satyanand* is not really a New Zealander, though he was born in Grey Lynn in 1944, but are too scared to say it out loud because then other people would know that we are straight-out racists" needs to be dispelled.



    *Yo, John Key: Not "Unngh Such-nun". Put some music in it, bro. :)

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    about Cantonese goldminers in 1860s Otago. I know, since I'm descended from one of them.

    I still remember as a kid knowing that asian people all had kiwi accents. It came as a surprise to meet a asian person with anything other than a kiwi accent.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3108 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    @ Caleb

    "Canadians." Of course. But that's a nationality, not an ethnicity. It's kind of an important distinction.

    Right, so "Canadians" shouldn't put "Canadian" down as an ethnicity, then (at least not in Canada) ... which brings us back to the question of what they "should" be instead.

    The nationality/ethnicity distinction is pretty tenuous. Look at the 2006 NZ Census: Chinese, Indian, Tongan, Samoan, Dutch ... all listed as potential ethnicities, and all clearly nationalities as well.

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

  • Stephen Judd,

    Actually, I've been thinking about what Brotherston said.

    The audience tell us over and over again that one of the things they love about Paul Henry is that he's prepared to say the things we quietly think but are scared to say out loud

    I think a reasonable reading of this, bearing in mind the ambiguities of the pronouns in it, is that the Breakfast audience tell TVNZ that what they (the audience) love about Henry is that he says what they are thinking. You know, I wouldn't be surprised if many of those who write in praising Henry DO say that, and Brotherston is more or less telling the truth, sad as it is.

    I'd love to know to what extent people watch Breakfast because they'll watch anything that's on at that time though.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2906 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    On the census, for statistical purposes, they want to know how you identify your ethnicity

    The key word there is identify.

    If somebody is a quarter Maori and three quarters European and ticks the Maori box then they are omitting three quarters of their blood line. Because they identify with their Maori ethnicity and not their European ethnicity.

    Because they don't identify with it and I doubt anybody here would get all uptight with them and say "it's not useful for census information" or words to that effect.

    And so what is the difference with somebody who had 8 great grandparents from various places around Europe not identifying with Europe?

    Again, if it is to collect valuable and important information on health issues and for planning purposes then they should ask people to write down the ethnicities of their 4 grand parents or 8 great grandparents or something but if it's about what ethnicities you identify with and giving people the choice of which ones they pick or not pick then I hope people aren't sitting on horses that are too high off the ground and desist with the redneck word unless they want to use it to describe every single person who has ever omitted any of their blood lines on a census form.

    From statistics New Zealand:

    The ethnic concept used for the 1995–97, 2000–02, and 2005–07 life tables is the ethnic group or groups that people identify with, or feel they belong to. Ethnicity is self-perceived and people can belong to more than one ethnic group. For example, people may identify with the Māori ethnicity even though they may not be descended from a Māori ancestor. Conversely, people may choose to not identify with the Māori ethnicity even though they are descended from a Māori ancestor. Ethnicity does not equate with birthplace.

    http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/population/births/new-zealand-life-tables-2005-07/chapter-1-background.aspx

    Since Nov 2006 • 855 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I'd love to know to what extent people watch Breakfast because they'll watch anything that's on at that time though.

    First, insert standard disclaimers about the limitations of anecdotal evidence. Done?

    I put that question to an acquaintance, and it turned out she "watches" Breakfast much the same way I listen to Morning Report -- most of the time, it's just white noise in the background of her morning round. Some things get her attention, but she's hardly glued to the couch for the wit and wisdom of Paul Henry.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11614 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    I'd love to know to what extent people watch Breakfast because they'll watch anything that's on at that time though.

    They could watch Magnum P.I. on 3, if they wanted.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    @ stephen

    I guess the question is WHY are those people afraid to say those things out loud?

    Is it because of the nancy PC brigade who are afraid of the truth about minorities, or because they don't want people to find out that they are dirty, nasty racists and bigots?

    That statement from TVNZ is a classic. It's like the guy who cracks racist jokes at his mates house and gets a few laughs using that feedback to justify saying them anywhere and everywhere. But my mates think I'm hilarious!!

    Since Nov 2006 • 855 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    I put that question to an acquaintance, and it turned out she "watches" Breakfast much the same way I listen to Morning Report -- most of the time, it's just white noise in the background of her morning round. Some things get her attention, but she's hardly glued to the couch for the wit and wisdom of Paul Henry.

    I'd like to say I'm boycotting Breakfast now but I've been actively not watching it for several years because of P Henry. Anybody who has decided to boycott it now has clearly been suffering from bad taste. ;)

    I just couldn't handle going off to teach teenagers each morning with my stomach containing two pieces of toast and a knot of hard boiled rage.

    Since Nov 2006 • 855 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    he is from the dire tribe...

    Ian, another PAS golden moment,thank you.

    As much as I hate the media hounding people and invading their privacy, couldn't we justify these intrusions on the basis that they entirely resemble the abuse he's visited on others?

    On the other hand, I'm sick of the media being the story. Mostly that's what I dislike about Henry, Lhaws and the rest of this mob of dissemblers.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2185 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    it at least shows that the idea is contested

    Which is great - let's have an informed conversation about it.

    The nationality/ethnicity distinction is pretty tenuous. Look at the 2006 NZ Census: Chinese, Indian, Tongan, Samoan, Dutch ... all listed as potential ethnicities, and all clearly nationalities as well.

    Agreed - I don't think StatsNZ handle it properly yet either. They could put ethnicity and nationality side by side so you chose "Tongan" + "New Zealander" or "Pakeha/European" + "New Zealander, etc.

    if it is to collect valuable and important information on health issues and for planning purposes

    I think someone pointed out on a previous thread about this that health is where you want to know race in some cases rather than ethnicity. It's becoming more relevant with increasingly targeted drugs and suchlike - though more likely to be at a genetic level where the labels that exist don't have the same baggage as Caucasian et al. Shifts some of the labelling impact into the disability space though.

    In general policy, ethnicity is still a significant correlator with all manner of disadvantage even when you take class and other things into account. Something we share with our colonial cousins (who were the other foot-draggers on signing up to the UN Declaration on indigenous rights). Yet part of our local identity is insisting that the playing field is level.

    Auckland is now one of the most diverse places in the world. The extra attention to matters of ethnicity in things like this and the mayoral election are all part of our ongoing conversation about how to make sense of that reality - when our old official stories about ourselves are mostly populated by blokes in Swanndris who look and sound like Andy Haden. And that's the archetype whose approval snivelling Mr Henry is seeking, whether consciously or otherwise.

    Put some music in it, bro.

    Good general advice

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15711 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    You know, I wouldn't be surprised if many of those who write in praising Henry DO say that, and Brotherston is more or less telling the truth, sad as it is.

    Well, as I said elsewhere, I'm sure there's plenty of Americans who agree with Rick Sanchez that "The Jews" control the media (well, the ones who aren't otherwise occupied raping Gentile women and killing their babies, hiding the truth about 9/11 and running banks). CNN decided they didn't want to give an anti-Semite ten hours of air time a week, and good on them for deciding Fox News is welcome to that demographic.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11614 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    . . . let's have an informed conversation about it.

    As distinct from a TVNZ-sanctioned "debate", complete with Buzzy Freaking Bee.

    Bloody hairy-arsed monuments to self-importance.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3291 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    ah the fabulously louche canon of Chuck Baudelaire
    The Flowers of Evil spring up freshly still...

    I like the end of that poem especially

    ...
    And yet, among the beasts and creatures all—
    Panther, snake, scorpion, jackal, ape, hound, hawk—
    Monsters that crawl, and shriek, and grunt, and squawk,
    In our vice-filled menagerie's caterwaul,

    One worse is there, fit to heap scorn upon—
    More ugly, rank! Though noiseless, calm and still,
    yet would he turn the earth to scraps and swill,
    swallow it whole in one great, gaping yawn:

    Ennui! That monster frail!—With eye wherein
    A chance tear gleams, he dreams of gibbets, while
    Smoking his hookah, with a dainty smile. . .
    —You know him, reader,—hypocrite,—my twin!

    One can see why he was the best man for French versions of de Quincey and Poe, et al...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4187 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    Auckland is now one of the most diverse places in the world. The extra attention to matters of ethnicity in things like this and the mayoral election are all part of our ongoing conversation about how to make sense of that reality - when our old official stories about ourselves are mostly populated by blokes in Swanndris who look and sound like Andy Haden. And that's the archetype whose approval snivelling Mr Henry is seeking, whether consciously or otherwise.

    And that's why Mr Henry, like his outdated thinking needs to be put out to pasture. He should come teach my Year 10s. Of 28 of them three are white and one of them is from South Africa. Most of them were born in New Zealand but none of them could possibly be New Zealanders.

    Since Nov 2006 • 855 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    How's this then:

    Ethnicity: Groups of people who gathered in different places sometime in the past and by the process of evolution, have developed (usually) physical differences when "compared" to other groups.

    Or more simply, and probably in the context of what we are all discussing, they merely LOOK different to YOUR group.

    And, I say again, only 2000+ generations worth of changing.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1458 posts Report Reply

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