What a fucking horrible year!
Betrayal, deceit, abuse, bullying – and that was all just inside the National Party front bench!
2018 has been the year of the Woke Left & Alt Right, fringes of identity politics fuckwittery that have managed to infect the political debate and turn it in on itself in a never ending cycle of social media outrage olympics and the narcism of tiny difference.
At a time when rents soar, child poverty continues to impact hundreds of thousands, suicide rates sky rocket and the planet melts before our eyes, the debate has become so hijacked it’s created a unique censorship where by only the howling echo chambers of the professionally offended have currency.
Sartre said hell is other people, I think hell is other people’s social media feeds. Millennial micro-aggression policing has replaced reason and trigger free safe spaces with emotional support peacocks have pecked out the eyes of logic.
As an economic global collapse fuelled by Trump’s trade war, Chinese shadow banking bubbles, Brexit, Italian political chicken with Eurocrats and emerging economy currency meltdown loomed, we argued about crypto-fascists speaking, Don Fucking Brash, Police marching in pride parades, Māori Santas, Baby Neve flights, Clare Curran’s coffee dates and complaining about fat shaming.
You know, the really important shit.
On the positive, Jacinda had some great photos and managed to genuinely inject kindness into the political agenda and soared on the international stage. On the negative, the media became so flaccid and terrified of social media backlash they self censored anything that might be considered vaguely interesting and the anti-semitic transphobic heteronormative patriarchy became the new red under the bed.
It was the worst of times and it was the most fucking tedious of times and I ended up despising the woke left as much as I despise the alt-Right.
Oh and lots of men kept demanding all year ‘not all men’, which was eye-rollingly banal and as inappropriate as Donald Trump at a trans-loving intersectionist feminist folk concert.
The only silver lining is that our head long rush into climate change oblivion means surely there’s only a few more years to have to put up with this cacophony of misplaced self-importance before the planet burns to a crisp.
A plague on everyones fucking property speculating house!
So without further bitching, here are the things we here at TDB hated and loved the most this year in politics and media…
Best Snuff Blog 2018 – Newsroom
Who would have thunk that in 2018 any ‘news’ organisation would accept 4 anonymous sources as the basis of a news story, but Newsroom did. After breathlessly telling the nation that Russell McVeagh was less a law firm and more a non-consensual orgy at Caligula’s, Dame Margaret Bazley investigated and found a situation that while not great, was far from the sexual assault factory Newsroom attempted to claim. One would have thought that debacle was credibility shredding enough, but not at the rarefied halls of Newsroom where Journalists who have priced themselves out of the market reside, they decided to press ahead with a ‘news’ story against Jami-Lee Ross which sounded a lot more like a political hit written on Simon Bridge’s desk than an investigation of political abuse. Journalist and broadcaster, Selwyn Manning, has done a critical and brutal take down of the real story behind Newsroom using anonymous sources and hilariously when all of this pushed JLR to a suicide attempt, Newsroom and their media buddies refused to look at their role in creating that. When Cameron Fucking Slater starts sounding like the most reasonable voice in the room on an issue, you know you’ve booked a room in hell.
Newsroom are like a privatised version of Radio NZ, but with more smugness, more avocados and more property investments.
It’s for the parents of Millennials who read The Spin Off.
Best Blogger – Danyl Mclauchlan
Far be it that we suggest anyone should actually read The Spinoff lest their eyes roll so far back into their head they pass out, but sweet Jesus Danyl Mclauchlan has had an incredible year. His actual blog, DimPost, was always a bit hit and miss, but everything he has written on The Spinoff this year has been a total must read. His book reviews and general musings about culture and politics are some of the best this country produces. He deserves acclaim far and wide for his intelligence and his brilliant writing style which is addictive, clever and kind. He’s effectively a Pakeha Morgan Godfery which is the greatest progressive compliment possible in this country.
Best Story – Steve Braunias – preparing for the end
There was just a glee in finding out that Steve was preparing for the end of the world wasn’t there? The thought that someone as clever, acerbic and sarcastic as Steve might one day be forced to pick through the rubble of a devastated future dystopia was a vision that helped us all rock easily to sleep, like imagining David Slack without a bike, or Tim Watkin unemployed, but it was Steve’s fascinating exploration of the darkest realms of our feverish doomsday fantasies that made his story series on end of times this years best. From those trying to cash in on apocalypse, to spending doomsday with Kim Dotcom, this occasional series was one of the most wonderful explorations of end times imaginable. The creepy conclusions to a report on nuclear war and its impact on NZ was genuinely terrifying in its bureaucratic apathy and worth saving as a print out to read when the final twilight blinks us out as a species. I think I could overcome the fear of immediate extermination as long as I’m reading Steve in my final moments.
Best Current Affairs Show – The Hui
The Hui just gets better and better doesn’t it? They manage to make the best current affairs in NZ and continue with a standard of Journalism that is light years ahead of everyone else. Why isn’t this on at prime time? Why the hell does it rot in some forgotten time slot in the middle of fucking Nowheresville? I don’t respect many people in the NZ broadcasting arena, but every episode of The Hui is quality and every staff member examples of the what actual journalism could be. All hail The Hui!
Best Broadcaster 2018 – Mihingarangi Forbes
She’s the Beyonce of Brodcasters isn’t she? Intelligent, fierce, always graceful and with dignity, she’s so good she makes John Campbell look like a Mens Rights Activist. Why isn’t she replacing Guyon Espiner on Morning Report?
Best Person on Twitter – Hillary Barry & Lucy Lawless
Oh they are just both so amazing aren’t they? In a world where social media tribalism seems to seperate and divide more than it connects, both these women manage to inform, stand up for and build more than they damage or destroy. They are hilarious, if you are not following them both on Twitter, what on earth are you doing?
Best Political Photo 2018 – Waitangi Day
In an unprecedented move, Jacinda decided to spend 5 full days at Waitangi this year and this image of her cooking Waitangi Day breakfast at the Treaty grounds spells out better than anything else the politics of kindness and service to the people that her Government wishes to espouse. If she makes this a regular tradition it could do more to reinstate Waitangi Day mana than any other single thing. Some will argue that only substance over style matter, but it’s difficult getting substance passed if people don’t have the vision of hope to disrupt our disposable fortitude to reach for that level of real change.
That image is real leadership and power.
Duke’s Memorial ‘Banter’ Best NZ TV Comedy – None
Like the awful and now defunct ‘Banter’ on Duke, no NZ comedy TV show was funny in 2018. They were all painfully precious this year, like a Christian Youth camp with 9pm curfew. When 7 Days and The Project are scripted career highlights for comedians, napalm is the only recourse. It’s. Just. All. So. Fucking. Safe. And. Trigger. Free.
Too woke to Joke Award 2018 – The Wellington Twitteratti
The woke warriors of Twitter and the woke millennials who staff the social media entertainment feeds for the NZ Herald and Stuff seemed to have no comprehension whatsoever of what a Comedy Roast was this year and it was cringeworthy watching them all complain.
The very funny and brilliant Rose Matafeo appeared on the UK Comedy Roast and I’m guessing the Wellington Twitteratti had never seen one before and so had no idea that the Comedy Roast is a no holds barred insult competition where sexism, racism and in fact every ism is up for use. So enraged were our woke friends they erupted onto Twitter complaining at the racist and sexist jokes thrown at Rose, and the story was given prominence right up until the comments started rolling in pointing out this is exactly what roasts are.
It’s like the Wellington Twitteratti turned up at a boxing match and started crying because people were hitting each other. May all their emotional support peacocks die.
Worst Political Journalist 2018 – Tova O’Brien
I’ve never rated Tova O’Brien. She is a creation of the Paddy Gower Gotcha School of Journalism which manages to turn every molehill into a mountain. Tova’s body of political journalism all looks like the policing of micro aggressions only she can see and be outraged by. Her analysis is always shallow and actually seems to make you more stupid than informed. It’s like listening to Heather du plessis Allan on ZB while simultaneously watching Duncan Garner on The AM Show. Tova actually makes you dumber.
Worst Current Affairs – The Project & The AM Show
You know it’s a serious issue on The Project when Jesse cries.
I don’t watch The Project, because, you know, I’m an adult with an education who doesn’t listen to The Edge, so I’m not its target market, but for real brain damage you have to watch The AM Show in the morning. It’s not Mark Richardson I dislike, he at least puts some thought into his bigotry, it’s Duncan. The amount of times he’s just wrong about the issue he’s discussing is terrifying. The AM Show is to credible current affairs what a mince pie and can of coke is to a nutritious breakfast.
Action Station Worst Activism 2018: Anti–1080
When Action Station weren’t arranging to ban Rachel Stewart from living for daring to challenge trans militancy, they were demanding free speech be banned because it was white cis male privilege. The worst activism this year was a toss up between the anti-free speech brigade and the foaming madness of the anti-1080 crowd.
The venom, self righteousness and utterly misplaced perceptions that 1080 is poisoning human beings and vast amounts of unintentional wildlife has been an eye opening reality check of how poorly understood science is in todays activist world.
1080 hysteria is on par with chemtrails and anti-vaxx conspiracy.
It’s a symptom of a world where knowledge of a subject has been replaced with google and wikipedia. This is exacerbated by social media platforms that are fuelled algorithmically by outrage and subjective fury so the craziest and most extreme viewpoints are repeated and shared to the level of brainwash.
Biggest Political Moment – Pike River
It is difficult to look at this image and not feel a lump in our collective throats. The pain the whanau of the Pike Mine River dead have had to endure has been 8 years worth of suffering in the making. The Government’s desire to fulfil that promise and re-enter the mine when National wished to just concrete over it shows a stark difference of priorities and values. The open face of Andrew Little who has championed this shows a humbleness of responsibility that speaks of all that is good and right about us as a people.
Simply the worst human being in NZ 2018 – Damien Grant
Right wing hate monster Damien Grant is simply the worst human being in the Galaxy. His annual firework display has killed 7832 baby horses and made 17 million pet owners cry really hard. He has posted hateful and incredibly unfunny things like this…
…when he’s not spreading right wing filth, he’s eating left wing babies. His death will be celebrated by vegan electric bike gender binary activists everywhere.
The Cormack Smug Hack Award 2018 – David Cormack
Surprisingly unanimous decision, David Cormack wins the award named after him. His writing style is almost as sanctimonious as Emily Writes and as dreary as Lizzie Marvelly’s 10 000th column on why men are shit, it’s never illuminating and it’s always painful to read. With protagonists like David, it’s easy to see why the Left always lose the public debate. Best read when very stoned or very drunk or very stoned and drunk. The only writer that book burning should be for. Imagine putting your hand in a car door and repeatedly slamming it, that’s the writing style of David Cormack. Apparently his stand up comedy is excruciating, like Louis CK but with more public masturbation.
Best Political Leader 2018: Jacinda Ardern
She’s just so good isn’t she? When she’s not disarming arseholes in the House and in the media, she’s DJing and challenging gender norm stereotypes. The perfect antidote to Trumpism, she manages to make kindness a strength and dignity a weapon. Jacinda is so amazing that despite skyrocketing suicide rates, almost 300 000 kids in poverty, soaring rentals, continuing homelessness, a mental health system that helps kill people, a counter productive prison industry, never ending poverty and meaningless climate change legislation – we still adore her!
Worst Political Leader 2018: Simon Bridges
What the fuck was he thinking? Demanding an inquiry over a petty leak of his bullshit expenses managed to become a full on civil war with his own political bagman! Where was the great moral Shepard of the Right, Matthew Hooton, in advising his protégé not to embark upon the worst political self mutilation since Adolf Hitler said to Eva Braun in the bunker, ‘You go first’.
How the Zombie Jesus did Simon Bridges manage to fuck his own leadership up so badly, I haven’t seen a meltdown this bad since the Fukushima nuclear reactor. How bad is Simon Bridge’s self sabotage of his own Leadership? The Party Caucus is actively considering the Queen of Shadows, Judith Collins, as his replacement. When Medusa has a higher favourability rating than you do, it’s time to go home and lick the many, many, many wounds. Simon Bridges has more self-inflicted scaring than your average Emo teenager rebelling against daddy.
Best Insult on The Daily Blog 2018
“It’s like a Spinoff TV dinner party where Simon Wilson has just finished a 5 hour powerpoint presentation on the importance of cycle lanes while you’re stuck between Lizzie Marvelly and Toby Manhire arguing over who hates men most”
Shooting yourself in the foot award for Wokewittedness 1- The anti-Free Speech brigade
The free speech debacle this year was surely our lowest point as a society. The Woke Left demanded trigger free safe spaces and made Bomb threats, martyred Don Brash by banning him from Massey and accused Miriama Kamo of ‘race betrayal’,
I believe we should have debated these crypto-fascsists.
Southern’s petty Islamaphobia bullshit can be shredded within seconds by pointing out the contextualised history of the West propping up mutated forms of Islam that are used as control mechanisms over people. If Southern doesn’t want so many refugees, maybe she should focus on the West not bombing the places they’re fleeing from. Her arguments are childish and can be torn apart immediately.
Molyneux’s ridiculous attempt to claim race and IQ are somehow connected and not a result of nurture can be debunked with the most simple of Google searches.
And Brash, well the best take down of that old goat was Willie Jackson’s speech at Orewa that totally annihilates Brash’s garden variety bigotry.
We beat crypto-fascsists by engaging them and wiping the bloody floor with them! We live in a progressive democracy, New Zealand Aotearoa! Woman fought to have the vote here. We were the first country to claim 40 hours as a working week. We went Nuclear Free! We are a legacy of people who build each other up as well as fight for what’s fair. How dare we be reduced to cowards who shut down debate rather than have the courage of our forebears convictions and engage.
What was worse than this was less than month later, the alt-right who were demanding free speech and the woke left who were demanding censorship reversed their position when Chelsea Manning was threatened with entry to NZ.
The stench of hypocrisy was unbelievable.
Here is the Grand Troll of the Right denouncing Chelsea Manning…
Mike Hosking: Chelsea Manning is a crook, keep her out of NZ
Chelsea Manning is a crook, and the National Party are right to be wanting her banned.
…yet barely a month earlier here he is screaming about the death of free speech because two Crypto-fascsists couldn’t use a council owned venue to peddle pseudo-scientific bigotry and because tired old racist dinosaur Don Brash was banned from speaking…
Mike Hosking: What happened to free speech in this country?
The left is against free speech which is a very large step, and dangerously so, away from being against opposing views.
…but the hypocrisy wasn’t limited to the Right, bewilderingly and without any hint of audacity is Golriz Ghahraman defending Manning’s free speech, while denying the free speech she doesn’t like…
…Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right. Here I am, stuck in the middle with you.
What the Woke Left didn’t comprehend in their algorithmic fuelled social media outrage over Southern & Molyneux was how easy it is for the Right to turn that anti-free speech platform against us when we speak truth to power.
The hypocrisy of the Woke Left was as disgusting as the Alt Right.
“It’s only free speech when we agree with what you are saying”, isn’t of any value to anyone.
Watching the Woke Left & Alt Right contort themselves into impossible positions over free speech when they both held polar opposite stances barely a month later would be hilarious if it weren’t so fundamental to us as a democracy.
Worst International Politician – Trump
The crude, base, Nascar bigotry right wing populism Trump created has been far more damaging than anyone could possibly comprehend. His jaw dropping racism and simplistic hateful answers to complex issues is drawing oxygen from an America who actually think Obamacare is Socialism.
Mainstream Republicans have for years played to their electorates god worship, fetishised rugged individualism and small business morality while rewarding corporates. The demand for an outsider to smash the system played to this electorates Fox News exploited insecurities.
Trump’s populism has been so successful because he is talking to those insecurities in a way none of the others would dare to.
There was much snarling and rolling of eyes at the absurd level of scumbaggery and insult that this tiny handed orange tumour has managed to create in a mere 2 years. That he has proved to be so much worse than predicted and that he is nothing more than a distracted dog chasing every car he gets angry at is as terrifying a reality as the violent revenge fantasies he peddles to a white working class who have been left behind by globalisation.
He is a carnival of ignorance, a cavalcade of malice, a celebration of spite.
He is a tangerine fascist and we have another 2 years of his madness.
Most vicious Dirty Politics hate attack 2018 – Sectioning Jami-Lee Ross
It isn’t easy being Blue.
Goading an MP with huge amounts of dirt on you into a self harm moment with anonymous allegations of sexual harassment while having a hand in his sectioning can make everyone feel drenched in a toxic sludge that will stain you forever.
You know, the way John Key is radioactive with mass surveillance and ponytails.
What’s worse is they now have to do the whole inquiry into the culture of the Party and if it’s awful for women with a straight face.
Going all Soviet Union on one of your own proves that National are prepared to do anything to win.
National have showed a level of ethics that would make your average drug cartel blush.
Shooting yourself in the foot award for Wokewittedness 2 – Pride Parade decision to exclude Police
The best bit about the Pride Parade meltdown is that it’s not in any way shape or form a blunder by the over zealous woke Board but instead a massive patriarchal capitalist conspiracy to fascistly re-instate gender binary norms. Kill me now.
Best Netflix – David Farrier’s ‘Dark Tourist’
Oh he’s just bloody wonderful isn’t he? If Louis Throux and Jeff Goldblum had a love child, it would be David Farrier. Dark Tourist was very funny, creepy and insightful. The guy is a legend, deserves far more screen time.
Worst Political Crusade 2018 – Reclaiming The C word
Massey University – No one will top us censoring Don Brash for wokedom
Green Party – Hold my organic craft beer
Green co-leader Marama Davidson is on a crusade to reclaim the word Kiwis find most offensive.
At an anti-racism rally attended by families, she dropped the ‘C-bomb’ not once, not twice, but three separate times. She was later unapologetic about her language.
“I stand by using that word,” she told Newshub.
I know I have been scathing of the Greens in the past for their utter incompetence when it comes to tactics and strategy, but Jesus wept – THIS is what the Greens decided to focus on?
I’m in genuine opened mouthed shock – the fucking planet is melting and the Greens want to focus on reclaiming the word cunt???
You can’t actually write satire as bad as this.
I thought handing their questions over to National was bad, turning a blind eye to Chinese water theft & seemingly forgetting about mining permits on National Parks – but focusing on reclaiming the word ‘Cunt’?????
Look, I’m sure this type of feminist reclaiming of empowerment (#empowerment #girlpower) goes down well like a bag of strap-ons at an anti-heteronormative patriarchy coven kink munch meeting, but sweet Christ, reclaiming the word ‘cunt’ is political suicide.
Part 2 at the end of the week.