Monday, April 11, 2011

Lying, Fudging and Misinformation


Honesty in politics is often thought to be a misnomer, the two words are not really considered compatible. I'm not quite sure if it is because of this commonly held view that allows John Key to maintain a good level of popularity, people don't expect him to be honest, but at least he's got a nice smile.

However, it really concerns me that  dishonesty and misinformation are not being properly challenged by our news media and the constant contradictions are not getting exposed effectively. During the last election John Key had a few shaky moments when he was caught out and he appeared like a possum in headlights, but now his relaxed and dismissive manner when discovered bending the truth now seems largely successful and he is getting away with some pretty heavy stuff.

We will put to one side the statements around not raising GST, the early claims that National Standards were going well, the claims he knew nothing about the BMWs (despite test driving one and having memos cross his desk). The latest porkies that worry me are around the preferential treatment given to Media Works; the meetings that weren't meetings, the urgency in the house, the connections with Steven Joyce and the $43 million dollar loan that isn't a loan and the advice from the Ministry of Economic Development that there wasn't a strong case for the loan and it would be carrying an unnecessary financial risk. Key has described his government's actions as supporting the whole radio industry, yet Media works gets $43.3 million and the rest get only $300,000.

A cynic would say they have pretty good control over TV1 and by cutting funding to TV7 they have further cemented their dominance. By gifting this large sum to Media works one could imagine a more circumspect approach to the National Party in news items and in interviewing Ministers, especially as the election looms.

Lying, fudging and misinformation is the way that this government operates, lets put a stop to that on November 26!

3 comments:

Darren L said...

What really bites is that Media Works are given a "payment holiday" for frequencies they own...and don't use! This is in markets where local Access Radio stations (and, yes, I do have an interest in these) CAN'T get an FM licence. Use it or lose it MediaWorks - and John: how about playing fair to all. This IS an election year afterall.

bsprout said...

There does seem do be a bias for large companies and corporates. The Government bent over backwards for the US film industry but doesn't support local actors and it supports Media Works over local stations that provide a real service to their communities.

Is it easier to control one large entity than a myriad of independent stations?

bsprout said...

On the other hand, there may not necessarily be some sort of conspiracy behind it like I have stated above, it could be as simple as Joyce just helping his mates. This may be an even worse scenario if public money is supporting personal interests.