Media watch – Saturday

24 November 2018


Media Watch is a focus on New Zealand media, blogs and social media. You can post any items of interested related to media.

A primary aim here is to hold media to account in the political arena. A credible and questioning media is an essential part of a healthy democracy.

A general guideline – post opinion on or excerpts from and links to blog posts or comments of interest, whether they are praise, criticism, pointing out issues or sharing useful information.


  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  November 24, 2018

    Plastic bag posturing to continue, handles to be illegal:

    • NOEL

       /  November 24, 2018

      I continue to wait for an answer to my question to the Greens.
      “How did my single use [actually a double use] bag get from the land fill to the Pacific?

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  November 24, 2018

        Facts don’t matter to this Govt, NOEL. Just feel the good vibes and LET’S DO IT.

  2. duperez

     /  November 24, 2018

    I’ve been called a sports nut, admit liking sport and having some involvement in it.

    Last night I checked results from the World Cup golf thing in Australia online.

    I’d seen ads on TV for an event and see a banner headline on the Herald site today. I definitely won’t click on it.

    “Follow live updates as Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson play head-to-head for $13 million.”

    From the ads on TV I had an impression the programme was the sort of promo you’d get about the Spice Girls (forming again?), Ariana Grande or whoever.

    A multi-million advertising campaign, a simple marketing exercise.

  3. Griff.

     /  November 24, 2018

    Dunne: All angst and little action on drug policy

    Despite plenty of posturing, hand-wringing and worthy words this year, little progress has been made on drug reform, as people continue to suffer and die, writes former Minister Peter Dunne.

    One should not look to Parliament for sensible and informed leadership on the future direction of drug policy in New Zealand.

    MPs across the spectrum and from all parties, without exception, have so far during this Parliament shown themselves to be unwilling or unable to grasp the complexities of the issues, inspiring little confidence that any real progress can be made.

    From the neo-prohibitionist stance of those on the political right, who still seem to believe that bans and tougher penalties will succeed now when they never have in the past, to the allegedly more progressive parties chanting the mantra of treating drugs as a health issue, without really understanding what that means or what is happening at present, the pattern is the same. Politicians talking straight past each other, pushing their personal prejudices as evidence, will ensure nothing changes, while more people suffer and die, and criminal gangs continue to become wealthy at the expense of the vulnerable.

    It is time to end the war on drugs, they say, wilfully oblivious of the fact that New Zealand abandoned the war on drugs years ago, and for about a decade now has consistently argued against the rhetoric and the substance of the war on drugs in international fora, including the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs a couple of years ago, and its own National Drug Policy released in 2015.

    Yet the Prime Minister seemed to know nothing of this when she addressed the United Nations a couple of months ago and proclaimed New Zealand no longer supported the war on drugs, as if it were some bold new initiative she was announcing.

    And while we are talking about the National Drug Policy, it was scheduled for a midterm review during 2018. What has happened? As far as can be told, the answer is absolutely nothing.

    And it is the same with the Misuse of Drugs Act. Passed in 1975, it is generally acknowledged to be outdated, and in dire need of review.

    Work that commenced under the National Drug Policy in 2015 to 2017 included ensuring that harm minimisation became a central feature of drug classification assessments, and reviewing the opportunities to offer low-level drug users alternatives to the criminal justice system. These were seen as necessary preliminary steps to a rewrite of the Misuse of Drugs Act which was to be considered in 2018.

    But, despite the posturing, and all the worthy words this year, nothing practical seems to have happened in the last year towards this end.

    The promised legislation to make cannabis based medicines more readily available was introduced with much fanfare as part of the Government’s 100 days programme, but has been widely criticised – correctly – as poorly drafted and generally inadequate. It has yet to come back to Parliament.

    We are now told it will be mid-2020 before the bold new plan is actually implemented, and sometime after that before new products actually become available.

    The patients whose plight was so desperate before this Government’s saviours came to office are presumably expected to wait a few more years in grateful silence for something to happen. And the referendum on the recreational use of cannabis is still shrouded in mystery.

    Will it be binding, or just indicative? (The Prime Minister seems very vague and ambivalent on this point.)

    When will it be held, and what will the actual question be? The Justice Minister says he is working on it, but time is ticking on Labour’s ability to deliver anything, let alone substantive reform, if that be the public wish, before the next election.

    It is the same story with psychoactive substances, with an unacceptable increase in the number of deaths attributed to synthetic cannabis in the last year.

    We have to make this stuff illegal, they say, ignoring the reality that these substances have been illegal since 2013. It is very difficult to make something that it is already illegal even more illegal, yet the National Party seems to want to do just that! And Labour seems to be meekly following suit.

    More at.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  November 24, 2018

      Relax Griff. They’ve banned plastic shopping bags and saved the world.

      • Griff.

         /  November 24, 2018

        Gee Alan
        You seem to be very upset by losing your precious bags .
        Is this your new look?

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  November 24, 2018

          Enough of the selfies, Griff, please!

          I’m just amused at them banning the plastic bags to put all their individually single-use plastic-wrapped items into.