I was watching The Nation in the weekend, and watched the defenders of NZ media up against Minto telling him he was wrong in his claims of media bias and that the media covered Dirty Politics.
When the defenders of the mainstream media say they covered Dirty Politics – what exactly did they cover? That Hager was a hypercritical thief for using stolen emails or that it’s a left wing conspiracy theory to smear John Key? The media will claim that the election news was dominated by the Dirty Politics scandal, and that’s true, academically you could point to a large percentage increase in news that focused on Dirty Politics, but what exactly was it that was covered? The overwhelming narrative was Kim Dotcom was the hacker, that Hager was corrupted because he used hacked emails and Key’s response that the entire thing was a left wing conspiracy was interwoven into most stories.
The mainstream media covered Dirty Politics the way they cover global warming. Here’s the truth that human pollution is warming the planet at rates never seen from a scientist, and here’s some crack pot quack claiming that the science says no such thing – now sure in this example the media have ‘covered’ global warming, but behind their pretence of balance, they haven’t actually spoken truth to power or promoted what is real.
Name one actual allegation out of Dirty Politics that has been fully investigated by the media. And when I say investigated, I actually mean investigated.
-Allegation of Rodney Hide being blackmailed by Jordon Williams with sex texts – barely investigated.
-Hacking Labour’s computer and downloading the entire database – barely investigated.
-The role of John Key’s office in dealing with Slater – despite being able to find old KDC staff in the Philippines, no NZ news media have managed to find Jason Ede.
-Rigging candidate selections – barely investigated.
-Corporate hate merchants paying Slater for hate campaigns against public good organisations – barely investigated.
– Key agreeing to brief Slater with SIS info – barely investigated despite there being a bloody formal investigation into the entire event that includes subpoenas.
-The relationship between Slater and most mainstream media outlets – NEVER investigated as this makes the mainstream media look terrible.
Need me to get note specific?
Need to ask specific questions?
When you consider the full blown media focus on the ins and outs of Helen Clark and the painting she signed that she didn’t paint (remember it was called ‘PainterGate’ ffs), when you consider the grilling the media gave her over the speeding ticket she got or the furore caused by energy saving light bulbs and water saving shower heads, the blatant double standards on what the mainstream media will judge the Left on compared to what they will let the Right get away with is breath taking, almost as breath taking as the fact that a vast number of NZers decided these Dirty Politics allegations and mass surveillance dishonesties were reasons to rally around Key and vote him absolute full spectrum dominance with a bewildering political majority.
This election the mainstream media didn’t hold the powerful to account, they let them off the hook and ended up empowering the very power structures they are supposed to challenge. As a fourth estate, they have failed our democracy miserably.
NZ needs a new media.