TV Review: The Vote 56% losing faith in Police

By   /   October 10, 2013  /   10 Comments

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Rating: 4.2/5 (17 votes cast)

TDB recommends Voyager

Without independent counter wights built into the system, it’s just cops investigating cops. No manner of flag-blinded, stabbed-Police-dog-health-updates, national-anthem-whistling-jingoistic-hero-worship can escape the gravity of that conclusion.

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There are moments of unscripted reality that manage to pierce all the propaganda bullshit that pollutes our mental environment, last nights ‘The Vote’ was one such moment.

The Vote has been a bit of a disappointment to be frank, some of the topics have been coma inducing, but with the need for less safe broadcasting and some ratings hustle to convince NZ on Air to keep paying for Tim Watkins mortgage, last nights ‘The Vote’ went somewhere most mainstream media never would, they opened Police up to a challenge that went well beyond the fawning hero worship it usually gives the cops.

The astounding 56% vote against the Police was extraordinary when you consider the wall to wall pro Police propaganda we are normally served up.

The pro Police team’s position last night was facetious. They kept pointing to surveys that show the vast majority of NZers respect Police and as such, how dare we complain about the protection they afford us. Their argument was effectively the Jack Nicholson ‘you can’t handle the truth’ monologue from ‘A Few Good Men‘.

We are conditioned in society to worship authority, using that conditioning to suggest unquestioning support for Police is a simplistic and intellectually bankrupt reading that falls well short of a defendable position. It’s because Police have so much power, that they have extra responsibilities to be transparent when investigated for abuses of that power.

The issue with our Police force is that the checks and balances aren’t rigorous enough for a progressive democracy. Without independent counter wights built into the system, it’s just cops investigating cops. No manner of flag-blinded, stabbed-Police-dog-health-updates, national-anthem-whistling-jingoistic-hero-worship can escape the gravity of that conclusion.

I thought it was interesting that there seemed to be no Maori advocate on the panel when you consider Police abuse Maori more than anyone else. Police have been the enforcement of colonialism since NZ was founded and I guess that ugly truth is a bridge too far, hence it being totally ignored last night.

The new Labour Party spokesperson for Police, Jacinda Ardern, should look at this astonishing result and push harder for a truly Independent Police Conduct Authority, one that doesn’t see 80% of cases investigated by cops.

I am still waiting on an IPCA report I helped lodge into the death last year of medical cannabis activist Stephen McIntyre after NZ Police turned up at his home after dark and bullied and threatened him. He committed suicide less than a week after that night time visit and his family believe the bullying by Police led directly to that suicide.

When Police can threaten, intimidate and bully citizens into suicide with impunity, then no amount of surveys professing respect can expunge that stain.

The illegal spying during the Urewera fiasco, purposely deceiving the Courts in the Red Devils case, the jaw dropping incompetence over the Kim Dotcom arrests illegally involving the GCSB and the recent report into the sexist culture of the Police inspired by the investigation into the pack rape culture of the 1980s that found Police aren’t changing are all blaring klaxons warning the Police demand far more scrutiny.

If we as citizens don’t stand up and demand accountability from the Police then we are part of the problem.

Excellent and surprising episode. Well done.

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10 Comments

  1. Psycho Milt says:

    Look no further than this report, a couple of weeks ago. Cop follows some motorist home in a road rage incident and gives him a violent beating in his own driveway, leaving him seriously injured. The victim is arrested, no action is taken against the cop. Who in their right mind is going to trust such people?

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  2. David says:

    It seems our police can’t wait to emulate their now militarised US counterparts who have an open licence to kill anyone without provocation. As our police just revenue collectors and persecutors?

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    Rating: +18 (from 18 votes)
  3. fambo says:

    I think the Police really need to start understanding just how important it is for them and the work they carry out, that the public has full faith in them. It is in their own vital interests to have independent inquiries etc. The Police have a hard job and they need public support to carry it out and be safe.

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    Rating: +10 (from 12 votes)
  4. Ovicula says:

    Jacinda Ardern could make a real difference if she took the notion of poaka accountability seriously. I know Mana and the Greens do, having been exposed to the actions of often renegade poaka (or maybe not so renegade), but Labour have always seemed too comfortable with the status quo. If we want a police service that belongs in a 21st Century democracy rather than in a 19th Century colony, we have a lot of work to do. The worst thing we can do is continue to follow the seppos, which is where NAct is taking us.

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  5. Don Franks says:

    The armed cop invasion of several peoples homes and their sustained intimidation of of Ruatoki didn’t rate a mention on this whitewash programe.

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  6. […] We are conditioned in society to worship authority, using that conditioning to suggest unquestioning support for Police is a simplistic and intellectually bankrupt reading that falls well short of a defendable position. It’s because Police have so much power, that they have extra responsibilities to be transparent when investigated for abuses of that power.” via Facebook http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2013/10/10/tv-review-the-vote-56-losing-faith-in-police/ […]

  7. Ovicula says:

    44% is still an incredibly high approval rating, given the evidence of their absolute unwillingness to investigate their own and correct mistakes that has been coming to light lately. Do 44% really think that ngati poaka have fixed the problems that saw rape as a team sport in Rotorua, or saw Arthur Thomas’s garden as a great place to plant stuff, or put Teina Pora in prison for something he so obviously didn’t do, or invaded the Urewera? It seems that they must, unless they don’t see any of this as a problem to start with.

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    Rating: +3 (from 5 votes)
  8. […] 56 percent voted no confidence in the Police. Some of the other bloggers I follow called it “astounding,” and went on to say it was, in their opinion, a more accurate reflection of a fundamentally […]


Only for the purposes of Electoral Act 1993 and the Broadcasting Act 1989 everything on this page is: Authorised by Martyn Bradbury, The Editor, TheDailyBlog, 5 Victoria St East/Queen St, CBD, Auckland, New Zealand.

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