Things that were neat this week

by Jake Quinn

Danyl at Dim-Post summarises this week’s astoundingly predictable NZ Herald ‘Mood of the Boardroom’ with typically comedic style: “Every year the super-human titans of New Zealand business take time out from their hectic schedules (shopping for palaces, improving their golf game, vacationing with their Harem) to attend the Herald’s ‘Mood of the Boardroom’ meeting and be gazed at with glassy, doe-eyed worship by Fran O’Sullivan, who reports theirtimeless wisdom back to the rest of us.”

Bryce Edwards whips up a handy summary of a chapter by Massey University’s Associate Professor Margie Comrie in the just published book Informing Voters? Politics, Media and the New Zealand Election 2008 (edited by Chris Rudd, Janine Hayward and Geoff Craig of the University of Otago Politics department).

I feel urged to join Tim and Danyl in calling shame on the standards “leak” (that Key fired Worth for simply being unfaithful) and its mischievous conclusion: “Key has given every journo worth their salt a huge incentive to dig around the private lives of his ministers. If he applies the same standard to other ministers as he did to Worth (and to be seen as fair and honest, he must), then he will have to sack any that have strayed. That’s an easy chance for a journo who gets the right info to secure a large feather for their cap.”

Eddie from the Standard’s attempt at satire, however, was warmly welcomed. Favourite para being: “The Prime Minister claims the project will create “a gajillion jobs” and bring in “tonnes and heaps of tourists”. He estimates the project will cost “about a couple of hundred grand” based on the cost of a similar project he constructed the other afternoon playing Rollercoaster Tycoon on his office computer.”

I joined a few hundred others on Monday night to listen to and share questions with Climate Change Minister Nick Smith and Climate Change Negotiations Minister Tim Grosser. I have to say, at least in Hamilton, this came across as smooth and effective PR from the National-led government.

Nick gave a lecture to begin with where he came across as, at the very least, concerned with the probable effects of climate change and – in no way – gave voice to climate change denial. That was a relief. He was out done however by a couple of impassioned 3 minute question/speeches from what I assume were Waikato Maori Young Greens who impressed with their oratory prowess.

Oh and finally, check out ‘Join the Opposition’ – a video by Young Labour building on some Kiwibank advertising memes. It’s a touch cringe in parts but actually pretty funny, with Pete Hodgson’s cameo a highlight.