Jamie Whyte’s Native Affairs interview is the most painful political suicide in broadcasting history



Oh. My. God.

You have to see the Native Affairs interview between Mihingarangi Forbes and Jamie Whyte to believe it.

It’s the most painful political suicide in broadcasting history. He doesn’t know what ‘Whanau Ora’ is. Holy fuck. Jamie not knowing what Whanau Ora is would be like Key not knowing what the National Party’s colours are.

How on earth was he allowed on the show so ill briefed? Prebs, what are you doing mate? This was an embarrassing meltdown that looks like a final chapter in the history of ACT.

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Whyte’s ignorance of Maori and basic current affairs is so extraordinary I can’t see that level of stupid gaining any sort of electoral traction with the educated well to dos who vote ACT .

Well done Native Affairs, easily the best journalism in NZ.



  1. I sent Jamie a link to the Wiki article on white privilege – looks like he needs to do a bit of reading up.

  2. What can one say about this idiot? To have the sheer gall to presume to be the “leader” of a political party in NZ, even one that is in the last gasp of its death throes, and to be so pitifully ignorant, and arrogant, is beyond belief.

  3. Like most of the stuff I’ve seen from Jamie Whyte, I thought he was wrong about this. But the fact is that what he presented was consistent with his ideology, he was capable of explaining it clearly, and he remained calm and polite, didn’t avoid answering the questions, didn’t try to weasel his minders’ talking points in there and didn’t start trying to bully the interviewer. By local standards, this wasn’t a meltdown, it was a masterclass in how to be a politician without being a shithead about it.

    • Oh come on PM – there’s sticking up for one’s political preferences and then ether’s admitting when they fuck up. Where did you put the bit about him not knowing anything about Wahanau Ora?

      • I thought his not knowing about Whanau Ora was interesting. He’s obviously very strong on theory, eg arguing points of principle, but very weak on practical knowledge of the field he’s trying to get into, which ought to be a bit of a worry for his party. Still, he’d make an excellent contrast to the bulk of our existing politicians, who are mostly thoroughly familiar with the practical aspects of the field but utterly unprincipled…

    • Disagree Psycho M. He seemed to lose the libertarian front, about half way through. He then started sounding more and more, like an old school ‘might is right’ Tory.

  4. They call him a doctor, shit, I’ve been in fist fights with skin heads who know more than him.

    Odd how he gave up on the libertarian rhetoric, half way through the interview as well.

  5. That was unbelievable. She handed him his butt on a silver platter.
    I can’t believe what I’ve just watched.

  6. Yes, I saw and heard the interview, and I was flabbergasted.

    It shows he is just a completely out of touch UK migrant import, who calls himself a “philosopher”, and has NO clue about New Zealand and what goes on here.

    And this after Winston Peters has repeatedly raise issues about Whanau Ora, which was all over the media. I was surprised that Whyte and ACT had not yet jumped on that same bandwagon as Peters yet. But his ignorance explains why.

    He has a dim view of Maori, because if he had the slightest bit of interest in them, he would know a fair bit about what Maori are concerned about, and what the Maori Party have brought in in cooperation with National, to address certain social issues.

    What an ignorant idiot the leader of ACT is. I hope he does not have a sister, as he may in that case perhaps come up with the idea of wanting to marry her (given earlier comments by him).

    His other answers to Mihi’s questions were just as shocking, I feel, and whosoever votes for his party, belongs to the most blinkered and brain washed idiots on the right fringe of society.

    1 percent of all votes will be a generous estimate, I guess.

  7. Whyte is apparently a one trick pony – he lectures and the world is supposed to listen… might work in England… but judging by the Guardian I’m guessing it doesn’t.

    Class act by Mihingarangi Forbes – Hosking should watch it and learn: they needn’t agree, but the interviewer is not the story – ever.

    • Yes she was classy as always….but I bet she couldn’t believe her luck when he stated his ignorance regarding Whanau Ora!!!!

  8. Dammit I missed it too.
    Just an add on to all of this. John Key to Marcus Lush yesterday morning, asked for his view of Christine Rankin standing in Epsom.
    He made some flippant remark about minor parties trying to gain influence (or something along those lines)………………….???????
    Marcus Lush missed (or avoided) a perfect opportunity to ask him what ACT (or United Future) are. Mind you, Key would have struggled to make infinitesimal look like minor I guess

  9. The fact that National is relying on a buffoon like Whyte to save their electoral bacon sums up how desperate they are.

  10. At the start of the interview Whyte made a valid point, worthy of discussion, that during an election campaign it is not the Race Relations Commissioner’s job to condemn a party’s policy (however obnoxious that policy may be).
    But it was all downhill from there. Whyte showed himself to be a babe in the political woods – naïve, ill-informed and out of touch. I almost felt sorry for him. Almost.

  11. So could you please post a list of the racially-oriented organisations that my taxes are funding that you feel Jamie Whyte should be aware of. Or is there not enough space on your hard drive?

  12. I was worried when whyte said he would ‘do away with” Maori television. It is the only true ‘public broadcaster’ left in New Zealand.

    • Agreed, Kim. Although I’m pakeha I often feel more ‘at home’ with Maori TV than with the other free channels. Maori TV broadcasts some damn good programmes. For instance there’s Kowhao Rau (I love to hear the old-timers reminiscing) and Tautohetohe (excellent debates), both with English sub-titles. It’s an easy way to expand my limited knowledge of te reo.
      I have also recently seen some all-time great French films and a documentary about Pussy Riot – all excellent viewing. And for lovers of the bizarre there was the classic Chinese story of the Monkey King that was broadcast a few months ago – made by Chinese for Chinese, but dubbed into Maori with English sub-titles. You won’t see stuff like that on TV One!

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