Colin Craig on Radiolive

Colin Craig just spent an hour on Radiolive with Wallace Chapman. It was very entertaining and it was great to hear Craig’s comments and interactions with the listeners.

It is an interesting time in the media as they are all over the Conservative Party story and links to National. I wonder, as did a caller to Chapman post Craig leaving the studio, if the media has nothing better to do at the moment so look for stories where there is none.

The Conservative Party could definitely be there or thereabouts after the next election and indeed could become a coalition partner to prop up a third term National Government, but the confident talk of “We’ll definitely be there” needs to be taken with a pinch of salt. There was internal polling at the last election that had Craig and the Conservatives convinced they’d win Rodney in a landslide which they ended up losing by more than 12,000 votes. I don’t say this to say they won’t be there, just as a reminder that polls ‘aint always accurate. Poll results go both ways as well, just ask Winston Peters.

On the topic of Winston Peters, having done talkback and talk radio for close to a decade I have to say that the supporters of Colin Craig, their angle on the world, and the repetitive themes that come from them do remind me a lot of NZ First supporters. I wonder if the Conservatives will go head to head with NZ First for these votes which could lead to a few scenarios.

  1. NZ First losing all it’s share and it disappears again.
  2. NZ First takes voters away from the Conservatives once Winston starts the ‘Foreshore and Seabed’, ‘Immigrants are evil’, ‘Everybody is against the elderly’ campaign which is sure to come.
  3. Or will they spread the potential vote too thin, and end up keeping each other out of politics by splitting the vote.
  4. Or I guess you have to ask for fairness, will the both get in…which would make for fun political observing in 2014/15 as Craig could try to out-Winston Winston!

One of the messages I enjoy from Colin Craig is that he wants to be, and thinks all politicians should be, representative of their constituents. I agree. The problem the Conservatives are going to face is who their constituents actually are.

Here are a couple of examples from today’s hour on Radiolive

These are the constituents that Colin Craig and the Conservative will be representing. I don’t know about you, but if I were in politics I don’t think I’d want ‘Michael’ to be my spokesperson, or writing my bumper stickers but if we did they’d be something like…

  • “We don’t believe in Aotearoa – Vote Conservative”
  • “We believe in Equal Rights for all (especially those of us with current privilege) – Vote Conservative”
  • “We want to smack our kids – Vote Conservative”

Or maybe Esther would be a better way to go…

  • “We used to live in harmony, except those of us who didn’t and had things like our language and practices oppressed – Vote Conservative”
  • “All that land we took off you, that you got back, well you should now agree to give it to everyone and let bygones be bygones – Vote Conservative”

I wonder if the Conservatives are setting themselves up to be a far right alternative to ACT. This is of course a valid voting block with an audience large enough to get the Conservatives into parliament.

I have spent some time at Conservative HQ, I actually offered to help them with their message, but it was plain to see then, as it is now, that as long as they can get across the 5% threshold appealing to the group of NZers that would adhere to the above thoughts then they’d get in, and of course there is a market for those thoughts.

So we shall now see if the media continues the narrative of Colin Craig being the next king maker, or if next month they will be back to Winston and the Maori Party then in 12 months we’ll all know if they were correct or not.

A powerfully, disturbing diversity excercise

This video is powerful, disturbing, uncomfortable and I think a must watch for everyone who wants to learn a bit more about how a minority might feel.

The teacher is Jane Elliot. Jane is also a diversity trainer who developed the Angry Eyes Exercise otherwise known as the “Blue Eyes/Brown Eyes” exercise to teach students what it feels like to be a person of colour.

This video begins pretty abruptly, where one of the students who’s been singled out based on eye colour is extremely frustrated. The exercise shows how when an uncontrollable attribute, in this case the colour of someone’s eyes…or indeed the colour of your skin…effects you when you get treated in a prejudicial way.

I am way underselling this and trying to sound like I know what I’m talking about…I think you should just watch the footage.

The Youtube clip has a write up that says

Racism is a system of advantage based on race. Do you believe white racism exists? Do you believe black racism exists? How has white racism adversely affected the lives of black people in America? How has black racism adversely affected the lives of white people in America? Black people or any minority race can hate white people all they want but it has no power to impact a whole group of white people.

Centuries of slavery followed by systemic racism—such as share cropping, black codes, Jim Crow—have acted as “virtual re-enslavement” policies that continue today. The practice of lynching was done by families, women and children, who would smile and grin at blacks being hung, or tied to a truck with their bodies dragged through the streets until the limbs came apart. Although not everyone is traumatized by a particular incident, slavery is not about one incident but a lifetime of incidents.

Brown Eyes-Blue Eyes Experiment – “The Angry Eye”
By Ms. Jane Elliot

One terrifying statement in the video, and I hope you made it right the way through is when 80 year old Jane Elliot says “things are better than they were when I was 13…they’re not as good as when I was 50.”

Colin Craig ready to jump into bed with John Key…who’s ‘too gay’ now?

12 months ago the Conservative party sent a newsletter out to residents of John Key’s Helensville electorate citing a local’s opinion that John Key was ‘too gay for Helensville’.

Colin_Craig_pamphlets

The political posturing around the Conservatives and National at the moment is interesting but it seems that while Mr. Craig may endorse the view that Mr. Key to too gay for Helensville, it’s now obvious that Craig is just gay enough to jump in bed with the Prime Minister.

We all know how MMP works and if the Nats ‘get into bed’ with the Conservatives it’s the start of a new era of ‘any partner for power’.

John Key has described himself as ‘fiscally conservative and socially liberal’ in an interview I did with him a few years ago and went on to say that if you keep the purse strings tight you can then spend in areas of social need. Whilst I think his record is not quite as ‘generous’ as that you have to say that in the areas that National has been socially liberal like the ‘anti-smacking’ law and marriage equality there is deep division with the Conservatives.

Whilst this would not normally be a problem between parties who focus is things like the economy and ‘jobs for New Zealanders’ this is not the case with the Conservatives. Turning over the anti-smacking law is Colin Craig’s number one objective in politics. Opposing marriage equality is also right up there so whilst there is a lot of generous spirit at the moment and acknowledging that ‘we need to work together’ you have to remember that for the Conservatives it comes back to a couple of big social policies, that they disagree with National on, and those policies are what the Conservatives are built on…they are their core beliefs.

I was at Conservatives HQ in the last few months and suggested to Colin Craig’s press secretary that he’d have much more a chance at the next election is he moved publicly away from these kinds of conversations, there was a wide eyed look of shock to that suggestion and I was told in no uncertain terms ‘but that’s Colin’s passion‘.’Okay, but who is here to counter Colin’s passion for political balance or even just another perspective, for example who is on the board who supported Sue Bradford’s law reform?‘ The answer was ‘No one‘.

I have no issues with people who oppose either of those social policies, that’s your right as a citizen and voter, however when they are ‘your passion’ and you are being touted as the person who will hold up the next politically right Government it is likely a concern to some.

The one other issue about the Conservatives is that should Mr. Craig get elected to a seat in Auckland I wonder if the question will be asked, “is this the first parliamentary seat that has been purchased outright in NZ politics?”

Colin Craig is a wealthy businessman which I congratulate him on, his success in the world of business is admirable, the success has given him access to vast sums of money. He has spent millions of his own money on his campaigns and protest marches to this point. The only reason there is a Conservative Party is Craig’s own personal $1.6 million donation at the last election…then there is the ‘March for Democracy’ ($400,000) and his Mayoralty campaign. If it wasn’t for Colin Craig’s personal wealth, there would be no Conservative Party, no TV interviews, no chance of winning a seat. I wonder how many will be uncomfortable with the idea that should he be elected, Craig’s wealth has been the main reason he is now in politics as without the wealth, no one would have had the chance to vote for him.

If we are potentially in a new era of ‘any political partner so long as we stay in power’ I wonder what the voter will do? Will the voter support that view and just to keep their party in charge they will open the door to anybody else to make up the numbers, or will the vote decide that it’s safer not to allow these one policy ponies in with unknown consequences.

Interesting what ‘we might like’

It’s always interesting when websites have permanent titles for sections without thinking about the story might follow.

Example, “You might like Justin Bieber bottled on stage”

You may like

Actually that’s something I kind of would like…

Sadly thought TVNZ has considered Justin Bieber being ‘bottled’ as being hit on the hip by an empty plastic container…as opposed to ‘glassed’ as one would maybe have expected…more of a new age, 21st century ‘bottling’ as opposed to what Billy Connolly might describe about life in Glasgow in the 1970s.

If you do want to see Justin Bieber being ‘bottled’ you can go here

And just in case, in this current highly intense time around violence, someone has missed it…this is said with the utmost sarcasm and in no way do we want to see the sweet Mr. Bieber hurt or injured whilst performing to thousands of teenage girls.

No Beliebers were harmed in the writing of this post.

Matthew Hooton on Radiolive

hootonA very strange occurrence happened at about 2.20pm this afternoon on Radiolive.

The normal political panel was happening with Matthew Hooton and Matt McCarten being left and right guests on Willie and JTs show when Hooton began what appeared to be a calculated attack on the hosts for their much controversial comments about the Roastbusters a couple of days ago.

Mr Hooton spent a few minutes explaining why these alleged offenders were men and not boys by using a Gallipoli analogy then this occurred.

I have to say I am not quite sure how to take this, and what the reaction was over the ‘Clint Rickards’ comments, it either struck a nerve, or it was so offensive to the hosts that they could stand it no more.

As this ‘Roastbusters’ conversation continues in various forms I wonder how many more of these kinds of blow ups we see and hear both publically and privately

Did Hooton do the right thing in your opinion?

Winston Peters pointing the bone…again

Winston Peters has been pointing the bone at the National Government over the Aratere Ferry in a tweet this morning that follows several months of blaming National for the poor performance of this marine vessel

Winston Tweets

Winston Peter was in Government alongside the National Party in 1998 when the Aratere was purchased from Spain, in fact at the time of purchase he was the treasurer (December 1996 to August 1998).

I wonder if Winston is using this to score points when from 1999 this ship has been labelled ‘El Lemon’ by the crew. If it was that bad in 1999, surely he, as a part of Government and the treasurer when purchased, should hold some responsibility for buying this piece of junk.

I have to say we are used to Winston using the elderly, or immigrants, or anybody to further his political narrative, but he’s now using a ferry to score points. Wow!

The problem with vilifying the Roastbusters

Roastbusters-1200First let me state that this post in no way supports the alleged actions of the group that has labelled themselves the Roastbusters, what this posts objective is to demonstrate to all New Zealanders the folly of convicting these guys before due process has occurred, and in fact the danger of not getting a conviction if these allegations are true and it goes to trial.

In New Zealand we have a Bill of Rights that entitles every person, no matter how low on the totem pole, the right to a fair trial.

Amongst other specifics, section 25 lists these things as a ‘minimum right’

  • the right to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial court
  • the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law

So far over the past few days we haven’t just heard ‘Owen from Nelson‘ condemn these young men as ‘criminals and rapists’ on late night talkback, but the Police, MPs, Rape Prevention organisations, Bloggers, Commentators, Educators and more.

Here are some examples from just the past 24 hours

  • The Police on Duncan Garner, question, “Do you think this could be rape?“, answer, “Yes!
  • MP Carol Beaumont “This fact that they think it is okay to stupefy young women by using alcohol, and then rape them, is completely wrong.
  • National Rape Collective said on OneNews they were committed ‘criminal behaviour
  • The police said on TVNZ news last night that they believed their ‘behaviour was criminal‘.
  • A Principal of one of the Roastbusters old schools said that it’s wrong that “the legal system does not offer protection” to the girls.

The danger with these kinds of statements, the statements that convict these young men before due process, is that we could be setting up a scenario where they do not, and can not get a fair trial.

As a broadcaster you are always warned about making statements prior to a trial that could be used by a defence team to say that their client cannot get a fair trial. When someone is charged with a most horrendous murder of a child, and the talkback board lights up with people wanting to ‘string them up‘ or using terms against that person like ‘murderer‘ the correct process is to not allow those comments to go to air. Now in this case there are no charges so it’s not quite as black and white as that, but my concern is that if these alleged crimes have been committed, then our society has been allowed to be whipped into such a frenzy against these young men, that there is no way they could get a fair trial and it would get thrown out of court.

I believe these young men will end up facing charges as all it takes is one girl to come forward and make a complaint and I think one will, which makes the idea of allowing due process to take place all the more important.

The danger of vilifying these young men, convicting them in the court of public opinion, and those with authority such as police, politicians and people of varying influence using terms such as ‘rapist’ before a trial happens, is that if they have indeed committed those crimes all our accusations now may lead to their case being dismissed.