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“It’s the MEDIA’S Fault!!!”

Right then Playmates, it’s the day after the elections and the significance of the results are finally sinking in for all of us. Tomorrow will be Monday and a new week will have begun. By then it will be time to leave off flogging this particular subject and get back to real life once more. The campaign was excellent, the result deeply satisfying, but now it is time to wind down the coverage.

So, while it is still the weekend, let me share this parting shot regarding the subject of blaming media bias. I wrote a few weeks ago on this very subject but felt it was worth coming back to look at it again in the light of comment made yesterday by that most EX of Board members Faye Storer regarding the role of the media in her catastrophic fall from office. It was, she opined, the fault of the Gulf News for running a negative campaign against her. She herself had done nothing wrong. She had done the right thing from start to finish, sided with the angels, fought the good fight and ‘Non, je ne regrette rien….’ etc…etc…

If only those bloody hacks at the Gulf News had behaved properly and said nice things about her then she’d have won. Pure and simple.

Well I’m sorry, but that is BOLLOCKS.

Ms Storer and her two chums went down to humiliating and total defeat for the simple reason that not enough people TRUSTED them. To lead off your post result excuses by blaming the media is both pathetic and dishonest. What’s more, it displays a level of self delusion that makes us all feel quite glad that Faye Storer’s political career is over. What’s more, the idea that the local newspaper somehow owes her anything at all is a very disturbing one. The media is not there to simply print whatever silly politicians fancy having in their press releases. And if the political message is rubbish it is the job of the media to point this out.

Alex Stone and I were the subject of what I am assured was a deeply confused complaint to Waiheke Radio from an A Team supporter. This odd fellow took issue with the radio station allowing air time to a pair of obviously BIASED malcontents who then proceeded to criticise the incumbent board! The fact that our spot is called ‘Opinionated Islanders’ and has been running for some time now as an opinion spot seemed to have eluded him. Our light hearted ribbing of the board was in no way a reflection of the bias of the station as a whole. Indeed, Waiheke Radio has emerged from this election process with considerable credit in the impartiality stakes. To make matters worse, the complainant then refused to come down to the studios himself to take part in a discussion. Too much of a ‘Media Talk-Fest’ apparently.

So what are we to make of people that whine about bias on one hand yet refuse to come along and present their views either? Apart from call them something rude? If the Gulf News, Waiheke Radio, WIPP and this website hold up a mirror to our community then it is no good getting all bent out of shape because you don’t happen to like the reflection. Sorry, but as we keep on and on pointing out, this is one seriously LIBERAL community and if such values are not to your taste then that’s your problem not ours.

Finally, let me also mention that I feel for the disappointed A Team supporters. They really thought that the 30% margin their board had entitled them to a big say in how stuff got done and now they are feeling very hard done by. I could develop this theme a little more but everything that needs saying on the subject has been written elsewhere by Els Verbanck in such eloquent detail that it would be foolish to add to it here.

All I can say is that looking back now, I’m damned if I can make out exactly what it was that the A Team supporters actually WANTED. One or two of them always felt the need to reply to posts on here but not once did they ever rise to actually arguing any points made in the articles. It was always a sort of generalised ‘You are totally wrong, and did we mention you are a bastard too’ droning that never actually seemed to go anywhere or make any points.

One vocal A Team supporter is a good friend of mine. We have spent any amount of time sitting up late drinking and discussing politics. He too has never really managed to explain what it is that he wants or what he fears from the new board. What is it that he feels the last board did that was so wonderful? Does he think Paul Walden and his chums are going to reintroduce feudalism or compulsory horse ownership?

All these things are unclear. I could, at this stage, point out that given the election result it really doesn’t MATTER. But, in the new spirit of cooperation and understanding that’s going around at the moment that would be wrong.

So I won’t.

Bye for now, and thanks for tuning in.

Posted in Comment.


4 Responses

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  1. Hans Versluys says

    The fact that not even your A Team chum could express what they actually stood for or wanted to achieve in office indicates to me a feudal mindset of born-to-rule prickery and Toryism that we finally managed to throw out of power.

  2. Alan Knight says

    Er….’Born to rule prickery and Toryism’?
    I reckon that’s BOLLOCKS too to be honest.
    I mean really….Is that all it seems to be to you? if so, I reckon you are trapped in the same restrictive mindset that the Faye/Jo alliance were.
    That’s just hanging a handy and convenient label on dumb behaviour as far as I can see.

    The real reasons for the eh team’s astounding defeat are so delightfully complex that they DESERVE a better overview than you’ve managed here.

    3/10 Hans. Now go back and have another go at this taking in a more nuanced and detailed view of the issue.

    I want it on my desk first thing in the morning.

  3. Hans Versluys says

    The only sense I got from the A team on the previous board was that I must tug my forelock (if I had any hair) should I pass them in the street. That and the patronizing messages in the Waiheke papers (when they were not sabotaging their political campaign).

  4. Freemark says

    Han’s comments are I suspect what your good friend (and many others) have to fear from the ideological leanings of the new LB (and their mistress). This imported cloth cap mentality (and complex submissive love/hate desire) I didn’t think had much traction in NZ, results have shown it is quite pervading on Waiheke at least. Although I congratulate the victors for their almost unbelievably stunning victory, and commiserate with the vanquished, I’ll comment on what I think it may mean for Waiheke, and the role of the Media – as that is the subject. Of course it is hard to have any discourse without acknowledging the entirely democratic and sensible process 3 years ago to elect Faye as Chair – who in their right mind would ignore the benefits of an experienced politician with a track record of getting things done within the political framework vs an admittedly local girl who despite promising the earth had & has proved herself to be a spectacularly ineffective achiever of anything except a lot of noise & hypocrisy (and an enduring pathological desire for Utu) Many things have flowed on from that, for better or worse – much worse for those who have dared to support and appreciate the efforts and dedication of Faye, Jo, Don, Jim – and even Paul when he showed up.
    Let’s look at the Media you have described Alan:
    Gulf News – Liz’s hate blog; from the weekly editorial, to the censorship of dissent, to the manipulation & misreporting of the Q&A, it’s got it all for you if you share her views. Waiheke Community Radio – let’s look at the bulk of the members, the contributors, the guests..one would have to be blind or stupid to not have noticed the underlying agenda and tactics of this group – which nicely slots into the..
    WIPP factor as evidenced by Hans – toe the (EW, or Green, or Red, or Black) party line or else you MUST be homophobic, racist, anti environment, elitist, misogynist..or something anti-“community”. Of course we won’t mention the vitriol & lies hiding behind Miranda Pope issue, move along, nothing untoward to see here.
    This site, no agenda either – WTF?? How about anti A Team/LB rants suddenly closed for comment, mysterious admin issues at opportune times..how convenient.
    So what might we see under the new LB? We have many laudable promises to be kept and I’m sure there is massive community support for some of them. I suspect life won’t be so rosy for those elitist rich pricks who like to play NZ’s most popular sport, or those other elitist rich pricks who like to mess around in boats, or fish off the rocks, or even collect shells from the beaches with their kids. I guess we can look forward to 40, or 80 houses above the 18 hole wetlands..got to have some payback for all that support I guess. $400 woman will contribute to a more “sustainable” Waiheke, as all we LIBERALS will dip into our own pockets to support her, rather than screeching for all those dirty business people, part time Islanders and bloody tourists to do so.
    Anyway, 70% or so of 50% or so have spoken apparently, the squeaky wheel has been oiled, the sky possibly won’t fall in, sanity (as much as there is on Waiheke) may prevail. Integrity and honesty has been discarded in the pursuit of minor political power in my opinion however, (that is not restricted to the local scene) and has unfortunately clouded my opinion & support of certain groups, people, and issues. But life goes on – vive la Waiheke and all that sail in her.



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