Why today’s ‘The Nation on TV3’ was so important



From the same Executive Producer who turned Q&A into a snore fest, Pundit editor Tim Watkin likes to play it safe. So safe. So dull. Who came up with the political satire idea? That was a 60 second train wreck wasn’t it?

God it’s safe. Selwyn Pellett and Fran O’Sullivan are the panel. Can’t get much safer than that.

Thank Christ however that due to the election safe shows like this are forced to give other political parties platform so the voices we seldom hear have space to argue, which is why todays ‘The Nation’ was so important. Grant Robertson beat the living crap out of Steven Joyce and it was a joy to behold. Most of what voters feel about Labour have been generated by a biased media looking for cheap headlines, when Labour have the space to argue however, they not only blitz National, they also allow voters to see the arrogance of National Ministers who have spent 3 years of not ever being challenged. Joyce’s ill natured spiteful comments that peppered his debate with Grant reminded all those National Party voters they are cheering on an arsehole.

Labour have the underdog card going into this election, and that position gives Labour the ability to surprise in the debates and extra media coverage.

If Cunliffe does to Key what Grant Robertson did to Joyce today, this election will be far closer than the media are claiming.



  1. I just couldn’t believe S.Joyce…….he made David Seymour last Nation-interview look quiet and reserved. But D.S has the excuse of ‘stupidity of youth’, ……..what was Joyce excuse?….The guy came across as a bully, an IDIOT and an uncaring fool.
    I COULDN’T believe the BIAS of the show……….somehow the panelists made out that BOTH were as bad as each other……….hang on a second, someone do the maths, I’ll guess Joyce spoke over Robinson about 5:1 more times, and Robinson started in MUCH later, one could ague as a defense, as the interviewer definitely wasn’t pulling Joyce up, more than 5-10% of the times, presumably because she was scared (for her job?????) of him?
    And the panel…….for balance we had a ‘reporter’ (purposely in quotation marks) who’s clearly a National supporter (and presumably is looking for a job with National party media department some time REALLY soon), Fran O’Sullivan (that well known Labour supporter………LOL) and then some chap I’ve never heard of, who to be fair seemed balanced, and made more positive remarks about ‘Labour’ than the Nats.
    That has to be the WORST interview by ANY minister EVER……..how Joyce can survive this is beyond me.
    I HOPE more Kiwi’s see that interview and decide what needs to be done at the next election. Surely such people can’t be in the best interest of NZ? Margaret Thatcher at her worst was better than Joyce was today.
    He seemed to think that if he drowned out Grants voice, Kiwis wouldn’t be able to hear an alternative and ask awkward questions of this ‘Government’…..a sort of hear no evil…….
    Winston made some good points, thank GOD someone is thinking of Kiwi’s in their own country. However he ‘stammered-hestitated’ a LOT and me thinks he came across as tired and past it……….though I support his principles.
    MAN we Kiwis need an UNBIASED TV program to watch about NZ politics…..because we don’t have one as yet !!!!

    • Sadly, a lot of NZers seem to mistake bullying for strength. That’s why Muldoon was popular for so long.

    • “I HOPE more Kiwi’s see that interview and decide what needs to be done at the next election. Surely such people can’t be in the best interest of NZ?”

      Yes and no, as I fear, this kind of shocking “interview” will turn huge numbers of people off voting, altogether.

  2. Count on it. Key has nothing but spite. Cunliffe has policies, evidence and a crack team of politicians -everyone who is not them in fact – right behind him. Ooooh he should be wearing a white hat!

  3. Agree Kevin. Unbelievable arrogance and immaturity. Did you catch Paddy Gower’s comment on the argument continuing off camera where Robertson told Joyce to ” get out of my face!” Good work Grant, go further than this get him out of all our faces and onto the Opposition benches. Pity the panel were too wimpy to note that most of the “talking over” was done by Joyce. James Cameron buying a farm is no excuse to sell the iconic Lochinver Mr Joyce. A tiny piece if land? Out if touch bunch of casual fascists! This is our land and our taxes contributed to the establishment of Lochinver. Get your thieving mitts off our country!

  4. Steven Joyce is an archetypical sociopath, we now have the absolute evidence of it. The vile, the hatred, the spitting remarks, the incessant interruptions, the hypocrisy and pretended self assuredness, being just efforts to over-play his own weaknesses, his failings and insecurity, it all showed.

    But I was a bit disappointed with Grant Robertson also, as he did give in to the challenging, snapping and back-biting remarks, the to and fro, which made the two look like two naughty, nasty, hate filled schoolyard bullies, taunting each other in front of cameras.

    I did not consider this “interview” of the two, or “discussion” as being much positive at all, rather the opposite, and this happening at the start of a program like ‘The Nation’, is a disgrace.

    Most viewers, especially the undecided, the already less interested potential voters, will have got the final confirmation, that politics in New Zealand is ridiculous, silly and a “waste of time”, that such leading politicians are just full of arrogance and contempt, they do not deserve to be voted for.

    Yes, most viewers will have been firmly turned off with this, and it later turned out, both needed a “telling off” behind the scenes, while the ads were presented.

    Lisa Owens disappointed, as she had lost control of the situation, she should have been firm with Joyce and also Robertson from the start, to net let it all get out of control.

    It showed how poor New Zealand journalism has become, and how poor politicians we have, and with this, there is little hope for a better future. We need a restoration of decent journalistic standards, better, well funded, quality offering, and balanced reporting public broadcasting. That must be high on the priority list of any future government.

    With this what we have, numbers of non voters are going to increase, rather than decrease, I fear. But we must vote, to stop the rot, and at least throw the worst of the worst out of government, that is on 20 September, no matter what.

    • I would say Joyce was more of a common garden type oaf who never managed the most basic of conversational etiquette ……..with a ridiculous titter to boot.

      He patently doesnt give a stuff …how do we know and measure this?……simply by how he demonstrated this by not even having the decency to shut his pugnacious little trap while others were talking.

      Can you imagine a prick like that at the barbecue? ….people who find all sorts of excuses to avoid the bore….and eventually seek find company in with others of like minds….like John Key.

    • I would say Joyce is more the common garden type oaf….who never learned the basics of good social etiquette…….with a ridiculous titter to boot.

      He demonstrated totally that he doesn’t give a stuff… about New Zealanders ,except for perhaps the people he ingratiates himself to in the business community…..as for the working poor…he couldn’t give a rats arse. Period.

      How do we know this?……simply because he didn’t even have the decency to shut his pugnacious fat trap long enough to listen to what others were saying…..then covering his facade up by that inane little mocking giggle and smirk.

      Can you imagine a prick like that at a barbecue ?…..people would be finding all manner of excuses to avoid the bore…eventually..still not understanding quite why , he would end up seeking out others who were of the same mindset…in which case he would find others he could ingratiate himself with…

      Like John Key and Judith Collins.

      • Let us hope we get more Joy(ce) like that, and the Nats will lose the gloss from the surface, no matter how “good” Key may look. Such ones as Joyce are actually a total LIABILITY for the Nats, and Key must be boiling furious about this “performance” by his minister on the Nation.

        No wonder that “chap” is just a List MP. He (Joyce) would not have a shit change to win a seat anywhere. The same applies for some other “candidates” they put up.

        Also some high calibre and experienced Nats are not standing again, like Tony Ryall, so there are a lot of “soft” spots to attack, that is the “newbies” they will try to bring in.

        One such is the guy that worked for a cigarette company, and who is standing in Bill English’s seat in Clutha.

        Labour and Greens should have a “party” dishing out to those low calibre wannabe yuppies within Nats. Let us not forget also that one “Goldsmith”, who is busy keeping his head down in Epsom, and who does NOT want to be voted. And now the Cons have thrown in their right winger Christine Rankin, to stir up the votes in Epsom.

        Who knows, the ACT guy may not even get the votes he needs now, as right wingers are too busy outperforming each other there.

    • “It showed how poor New Zealand journalism has become”…

      Yes indeed – but not this site here ay.

      Where has Genevieve Westcott gone?

  5. GR was the balanced presenter of policy compared to the barking dog that Joyce imitated. Likewise, Winston so scathingly shut up Gower’s impertinence he looked like a stunned but grimacing, clam.

  6. It occurred to me, watching Lisa Owen’s brave attempt to reign in Joyce, that there is a reason why National Ministers behave as he did.

    Because they’ve come to expect it from a media that is more interested in superficialities; sensationalistic headlines, and “gaffe politics”, rather than real investigative/interviewing techniques.

    National ministers do not expect deep, probing questions in a lengthy interview uninterupted by ad breaks. (Hence why they usually avoid Radio NZ.)

    So Joyce thought he could get away with it.

    Having said that, Labour (and other Opposition) MPs need to find a way to cut through that kind of verbal bullying without seeming to get into a slanging match.

    As an indicator, I suggest the oft-quoted Lange-Muldoon-“I Love You” debate, where Lange came away from it measured, reassured, and confident. He seemed above the noisy slanging match.

    How to do it? No idea. If I did, I’d be doing a media-training course and making good coin in the process.

    But made the party strategists in Labour, Greens, and Mana should be reviewing Joyce’s tactics and finding a way to counter it, without engaging in it.

  7. Joyce is the archetypal bully who thinks you win a debate by shouting and intimidating the opponent. When he does say something, he lies in the same way that Paula Benefat does. It is going to be great to get rid of these creeps.

  8. Having watched Steven Joyce on The Nation on Sunday 3rd August I am concerned at the mis-information that is being spread by both Gerry Brownlee and Steven Joyce about the Napier to Gisborne line.
    For example he brought up the statistic that only 6% of traffic had been carried by the line which of course completely ignored the background to the closing of the line.
    What was more concerning is that the interview picked up the comment and repeated it as if it was an absolute fact.
    It is obvious that both Joyce and Brownlee are going to keep running down the line so here are some bullet points to use when the opportunity permits.
    • Kiwirail had no interest in keeping the line as part of the network:

    • It was unable and/or unwilling to provide rolling stock to take up the existing opportunities

    • It was the private enterprise of Weatherell Transport that showed the value of the line using it for the export of high value fresh horticulture product in 40 foot refrigerated containers unable to be taken out by road.

    • It failed to maintain the line’s infrastructure which led directly to the washouts

    • its review of the line was inaccurate containing contradictions and misleading assumptions about the state of the line and the freight potential.

    • Two independent studies by the Gisborne District Council and BERL showed up the inaccuracies in the Kiwirail report.

    • Even if Kiwirail was directed to re-open the line there would not be the trust from the district, that Kiwirail would not change its stance at the first opportunity.

    Regional Development

    • All three regional bodies support the retention of the line

    • Gisborne has one of the worst records for unemployment and regional development
    • The port is only able to export logs which in most cases have to be double handled from forest to port.\

    • There is a great potential to increase the export of horticulture products using 40 foot refrigerated containers.
    • State Highway 2 is a difficult road to transit and maintain.

    • The Napier District Council is prepared to budget $5m to retain the line

    • A private company of directors experienced in rail operations has been formed to run the operations.

    • They have developed their own business case to support the re-opening of the line

    The Government

    Steven Joyce when Minister of Transport encouraged Gisborne people to develop the line.
    As Minister of MBIE he has ignored independent report and taken up an ideological stance against the re-opening of the line.
    Gerry Brownlee also has ignored the independent studies and keeps repeating the following mantra
    • The line will only pay if it can achieve over 400,000 tonnes per year – based on the Marapura line.
    This ignores the Kiwirail study that showed between 100,000 to 200,000 tonnes would be sufficient to contribute to the strategic rail network.
    • Logs have to be double handled which makes carrying them uneconomic – ignoring where it is already in operation in the Manawatu and Wairarapa.
    Is it their ploy to steal another important regional railway for the John Key cycle around NZ trail?

    Maybe it is, and also important that the railway was actually promoted and completed under the first Labour Government during and last Depression by Michael Joseph Savage.
    Instead of a Tory Government which would have ensured it remain in service today as another example of Tory’s “working for N.Z.”

    Fix the rail Napier Gisborne rail National you destroyed it remember, or at least offer it to the private consortium that wants to operate it.

  9. Perhaps it should have gone like this:

    LO: Mr Joyce if you continue to speak over the top of Mr Robertson and myself you can fuck off.

    I suspect that would do it.

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