Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Not actually satire

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  • Lucy Stewart,

    I can imagine. A history MPhil is hard enough!

    Precisely why I'm planning to bugger off permanently to the sciences once my BA is complete. *g* I have a friend who did Honours in history over in Queensland - by the end of the year he was practically huddled in a fetal position saying "the books are coming to get me!".

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Thanks Steve, and I love this conversation starter from Mr Vouchermate:

    P is a misunderstood drug. It gives me the energy to really make a difference in my local community

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • davidamstalden,

    My 2 cents: I think Winston plays a valuable role in parliament. He's the voice of the angry, the unsettled, the paranoid and the distrusting. That's a big chunk of the electorate, folks, (including pretty much anyone over 60 and also me quite often). These people deserve a champion. Seeing the end of him would be like losing Mr Ranapia, satisfying in the short term but disenfranchising the legitimate concerns of many Kiwis.

    Also, although I never came close to any Universities during my formative years, (and so find it difficult to unner-stand the comments on publicaddress somer-times), I do know how to kill, gut and quarter any beast between a rabbit and a bullock. Checked out the meat section in your local supermarket lately? Where's your law and history degrees now, eh? Haah ha ha!

    New Plymouth • Since Mar 2008 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • davidamstalden,

    Also, if I were an MP, I would also find it pretty hard not to slap Duncan Garner. The guy really seems like a bit of a dick.

    New Plymouth • Since Mar 2008 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    He's the voice of the angry, the unsettled, the paranoid and the distrusting... disenfranchising the legitimate concerns of many Kiwis

    First up, I'm not sure it's a good thing if the angry and paranoid get a voice. My reading of history is that it doesn't usually work out to well if they do. And to the extent that people really are paranoid, I'm not counting their concerns as legitimate.

    Second, the distrusting and unsettled deserve a better one. In decades of parliamentary life, what has that bastard ever done for them?

    I understand the appeal of being conservative. As I get older and understand how unpredictable the outcome of planned changes are, I become more conservative myself. But to me Winston Peters exploits the worst instincts of people who want to preserve the good things about this country, always wanting to put the boot into people who allegedly are ruining it without a care for doing constructive things.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Going by his words in his column in The Christchurch Press, Round has turned into a fundamentalist christian. Whether he is still an environmentalist, I have no idea. As a Kai Tahu, I find many of his comments ill-informed and offensive. But - he's a lightweight so why bother with him?

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    I seem to recall reading somewhere that one-third of all degrees granted in the last few years are in commerce.

    That's not the end of the world, though. Commerce covers a very wide range of topics. There's the classic accounting and finance, plus economics, international business, international trade, marketing (*hiss*), management, operations management and research, information systems, and commercial law. Well, that's the range of majors offered at Auckland. So while 1/3 of all the degrees might be commerce degrees, it doesn't mean that 1/3 of all graduates are accountants, or economists.

    I'll come out with a BCom in Information Systems and Commercial Law, neither of which qualifies me to be an accountant or an economist but still allowing me to take my place amongst the ranks of the commerce grads :)

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • davidamstalden,

    I'm not going to defend Winston's methods, which are undoubtedly too confrontational and ultimately counter-productive.

    But I will say this: he articulates what an awful lot of people are feeling; that 'the bastards*' are out to 'screw the little guy', and whether or not this is justified, (and I personally think it has some weight), NO-ONE can say that the voting block he taps into don't deserve to have their opinions expressed in the House.

    It's too easy to say "Well, these people are ignorant, suspicious, reactionary, and it's just downright dangerous to let them have a say in the agenda of Government." I tend to think that if you CAN'T find them a place in your Government, then your Government isn't doing it's job properly. We need Winston, because he represents a big part of the we.

    *Duncan Garner, Colin Espiner, etc, Lawyers and Politically Correct Historians, Finance Companies, Politicians, Foreign Owned Banks, and the Patels who own the fruit shop on the corner. Also anyone else who doesn't look, sound or smell like me.

    New Plymouth • Since Mar 2008 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    In related news. Don't you think it was disrespectful and rude to ask about the Peters issue when Condoleezza Rice was in town?

    You're right. We should have asked her about torture, and whether she had any fear of ending up in the Hague like Karazdic.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1716 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    Winstons career has been an amazing up and down ride. He's of old school National heritage, 3 terms with our GOP and the fact he is of Maori ancestory use to be a big asset to that version of the National Party in that it made them look more inclusive.

    His party popularity does seem to largely revolve around talking consistently to his core supporters, the elderly and to be honest that's a sector of society who deserve much more political attention.
    You've paid your taxes all your life , you've got 10 - 20 years to live and only one bugger seems to be taking your standard of living seriously.

    I don't really follow him closely and like many have found his immigration statements ugly and uneasy,(although I'm sure it's a debate we need to have more time on and i'm sure a lot of immigrants would like to tell us alot of things about us that some of us probably don't want to hear.)

    I have met fans though and they seem to point to four areas of achievement.

    1) The winebox saga - an admiration of the bravery it took to take those guys on.
    2) Free health care for under sixes.
    3)A understanding of the limitations of the reserve bank act.
    4) Listening to our seniors and championing them.

    .... he's hardly our greatest politician but he's argueably our most productive third party politician.

    Maybe he should just do the Bob Jones political exit strategy and just bop the media on the nose and go fishing.

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    Is there anyone on here who, in a strange and small way, will actually miss Winston once he’s gone in a few months time?

    I think you're assuming too much - the man has the survivability of a cockroach. if someone dropped a nuke on Wellington and turned the centre of kiwi cafe culture into glass, it'd be Winston and the cockroaches playing in the rubble. And then the cockroaches would die because they need warm homes and human skin flakes.

    OTOH, how long Winston would last without constant feeding from the media is an interesting question. Maybe he'd starve to death, maybe he'd just shrivel up and shrink like a time lord in a bad series finale. And almost certainly you'd never get the experiment past the ethics committee...

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1716 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    You're right. We should have asked her about torture, and whether she had any fear of ending up in the Hague like Karazdic.

    Which is a roundabout way of saying "never respect a politician. if you do, they'll get away with murder (or in this case, torture and war crimes)".

    Seriously, the exaggeratd respect the US media shows for their representatives undermines any pretence of public accountability. We're better off with a rude, obnoxious press pack (though please, can we have one which is less superficial ?)

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1716 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    These people deserve a champion. Seeing the end of him would be like losing Mr Ranapia, satisfying in the short term but disenfranchising the legitimate concerns of many Kiwis.

    David:

    If I ever start behaving like a pathological and paranoid liar who has never seen a nasty little itch he could resist scratching, hit me in the head with a shovel and start digging that unmarked grave. As I've said elsewhere, I've held him in contempt for almost twenty years and see no reason to change my mind. Neither does my 63 year old partner, so can we cut the elderly out of Winnie's particular pathology?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    This from Colin Espiner on Joyce.

    By the way, I hear that the announcement that former campaign manager and Exclusive Brethren bagman Steven Joyce will get a list-only placing has gone down like a lump of lead with National’s caucus. Half of them are grumpy because they don’t like his methods and the other half because he’s leap-frogged them into Parliament without having to do any work.

    Apparently Murray McCully is worried that there will be alternative to the role of “Dark Prince” of the National Party. And to rub salt into the wound, Joyce was there on Tuesday to brief them all on campaign strategy, since he remains the campaign chairman. And the head of Jasons Media. Wonder if he’ll find any time to campaign himself or whether he’ll just be leaving that to his colleagues.

    I love the analysis about the cause of McCully's disquiet :-) Just how many "Dark Princes" does National need?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    "Seeing the end of him would be like losing , satisfying in the short term but disenfranchising the legitimate concerns of many Kiwis.'

    I guess MMP is saying if there are 5% of ya we might as well see you and hear what you're about. Is 5% too low? Personally I think that's about right.

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    It's too easy to say "Well, these people are ignorant, suspicious, reactionary, and it's just downright dangerous to let them have a say in the agenda of Government." I tend to think that if you CAN'T find them a place in your Government, then your Government isn't doing it's job properly. We need Winston, because he represents a big part of the we.

    Actually, David, what THEY deserve is representation who has some serious economic policy ideas, as opposed to a toxic cocktail of xenophobia, nostalgia for a world that never really existed and basic economic and statistical illiteracy. There are people out there who would like nothing better than to see people like me stripped of any civil, political and human rights worth speaking of. You will pardon me if I weep no crocodile tears if they never get a voice in my fate.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    "There are people out there who would like nothing better than to see people like me stripped of any civil, political and human rights worth speaking of. You will pardon me if I weep no crocodile tears if they never get a voice in my fate."

    Explain more. What's' the agenda?

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • davidamstalden,

    Craig:

    I'm just saying: God loves all his Children. And so should a democracy. And no, I don't think we really can cut the elderly from Winston's (you say pathology, I say legitimate electoral base). They are the ones voting for him.

    In my opinion, better the elderly, who deserve our consideration and compassion, than the whiny and selfish boomers who seem to make up National's voter base.

    New Plymouth • Since Mar 2008 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • davidamstalden,

    Also, I'm more scared of the tyranny of the majority than I am of the disgruntlement of Winston's minority. And I will ever continue to insist that they (and he) occasionally have some valid arguments that deserve attention.

    New Plymouth • Since Mar 2008 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    "You will pardon me if I weep no crocodile tears if they never get a voice in my fate."

    and more power to you brother, let's face it there are sectors of our society who need to be braindirtyied thoroughly with the beauty of science. It's beyond fucking disgusting.

    That's why the exclusive bretheren freaked me the fuck out. if nz first harbours that kind of shit good riddance but that's a story i'd like to see.

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I'm just saying: God loves all his Children.

    God certainly does, but I've no delusions of Godhood. There's some And to steal a line from CSI: The evidence doesn't lie. At the 2005 election, Winston Peters was given the pink slip by the electors of Tauranga, and 94.28% of people who cast a valid party vote did so for any other party than New Zealand First.

    In my opinion, better the elderly, who deserve our consideration and compassion, than the whiny and selfish boomers who seem to make up National's voter base.

    David: Would you like to guess which finger I have rigidly extended right now?

    I've nothing against the 'elderly' -- OK, really let's not go there -- but I take serious people seriously. There's no qualifying age where you get pass for being a psychotic racist. Or standing up, as Ron Mark did in the House today, and engaging in frankly cringe-inducing chest beating about locking crims up and throwing away the key.

    And may I really lose the grey vote here, by saying if you want to see whiny and selfish people with senses of entitlement like cancerous prostate glands, just you wait until the multi-party Grey Power pander-thon begins.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I love the analysis about the cause of McCully's disquiet :-) Just how many "Dark Princes" does National need?

    I'll have a big Machiavelli and fries with that shake.

    (I'm not sure what I mean by that, but it sounded funny.)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22811 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    "Or standing up, as Ron Mark did in the House today, and engaging in frankly cringe-inducing chest beating about locking crims up and throwing away the key."

    yeh, that sucks, you're right but other parties aren't so keen on keys either. (no puns please)

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • davidamstalden,

    Craig, I'm going to guess you have your pinky finger extended because you're precious, (just like the other boomers).

    My point is that 5% of NZ voters DID vote for NZ First. You can't ignore that large a proportion of the voting public. It's not like they're the National Front, with 200 members. (Members. Sounds about right).

    You say you take serious people seriously? Well, how do you get off calling Winston Peters a psychotic racist and then expect me to take you seriously? (Cards on the table, I can't stand the man. What a pompous git he is. And Ron Mark? He really needs a good talking to, that man).

    Nevertheless, Peters deserves to be in Parliament. He articulates the concerns of many people, and ignoring or dismissing those concerns would do more harm than allowing them a national forum and addressing them in a fair and understanding way.

    New Plymouth • Since Mar 2008 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I think our seniors deserve a better champion than that pompous lazy fool.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

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