Andrew Vance has provoked a lot of comment with Crass opportunism in wake of siege.
OPINION: Is there a better time for political opportunism than in the wake of a “terror” attack?
For Prime Minister John Key it seems not.
The gunsmoke had barely cleared from Sydney’s Martin Pl, than he was doing the rounds of the media this morning.
The Government tried to cash in on public fears when few facts were known regarding the events or gunman Man Haron Monis’ motivation.
She took the opportunity to compare to ‘Five Eyes’, something she has shown in the past feels very strongly about.
Just last week, Nils Muižnieks, The Council of Europe commissioner for human rights, offered a compelling counter-view.
He condemned “secret, massive and indiscriminate” surveillance being undertaken by the Five Eyes intelligence network, of which New Zealand is a part,saying it “cannot be justified by the fight against terrorism or other important threats to national security”.
She then slams Key.
Now Key is attempt to shape the debate again – he needs to earn sympathy for a military deployment to Iraq early next year.
His grave tones on breakfast television this morning were reasonable. But he used rhetoric and sentiment commonly employed by US politicians justifying the War on Terror post-9/11, portraying those in his sights as irrational, barbaric and beyond compromise.
It dissuades critical examination and argument, with those questioning him labelled soft or naive.
Other than furthering his own political ends, his comments were unhelpful and serve only to unnecessarily heighten anxiety in the community.
I think she is misjudging public sentiment after the deaths of the hostages in Sydney.
Key’s crass opportunism is a jarring contrast to the simple generosity of Australians who adopted #illridewithyou.
Some comments supported Vance’s stance but were heavily down ticked. The first by BenM:
Spot on. Thank you Andrea.
Currently -73 ticks.
So let me get this right, the media questions him, he answers and now it is him taking an opportunity???
If he didn’t speak at all about the incident you would chastise him for that as well!
Journalists these days make me sick. If anything, the only thing that was crass was fairfax;s reporting of the incident.
There were a number throwing “crass opportunism” back at Vance. Responder:
And as usual Andrea Vance loses no time in making her opportunist attack on John Key.
‘Bcom77′ points out:
I think the media, this site included, do a better job of spreading fear and heighten public anxiety than you accuse John Key of doing.
A few more supported Vance – Havid Dornblow:
Keep the heat on Andrea, this regime deserves no slack. Question all decisions, investigate all motives.
But the thread was dominated by criticism. Christie:
I’m sorry Andrea, but this type of journalism is, quite simply irresponsible. There has just been a siege in Sydney, with 2 hostages dead at the hands of an Islamic radical, who considers himself a member of ISIS. We know there are people of similar ilk in this country.
It follows that it could happen here. Maybe unlikely – but then again, we never thought it would happen in Australia either. This is not political opportunism. This is the PM answering questions about the likelihood of it all happening here.
What is he supposed to say – “No, no – everything is fine – just carry on, there is no big bad wolf here”. What is it going to take to make people like you realise that the threat is real? That we are not immune? Beheadings in Aotea Square?
And for the record, Andrew Little has come out and said much the same thing – but you are not attacking him – are you?
Vance took the opportunity to relate Key’s comments to an international spying hobby horse of hers but yesterday was not a good time to attack surveillance of terrorists and people at risk of doing something crazy.
Key’s response to the deaths like Sydney gave Vance an opportunity to attack Key over wider issues. Whether either was crass is debatable but the backlash against Vance was not surprising in the circumstances.
Most people, especially at times like this, would accept more surveillance of people at risk of doing something stupid and dangerous.
Maintaining security measures versus the possibility (albeit very unlikely) that someone would see their online wafflings is not a big deal to most of us.
A cafe is Sydney is quite close to home for Kiwis.Vance’s stance is a long way away from most sentiments. It’s not surprising to see she provoked a strong backlash against her comments in the wake of the Sydney horror.
(For some more anti-Key opportunism see Vance on Key’s “crass opportunism” at The Standard)