Media watch – Tuesday

27 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.

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  1. robertguyton

     /  November 27, 2018

    “Paula Bennett says she’s the same person only smaller.”

  2. This was predicted for yonks.

  3. Griff.

     /  November 27, 2018

    New Zealand is debating its cannabis policy, a process that led to legalisation of cannabis use and supply in Canada just last month. Since the two countries share many traits and values – and high cannabis use rates – they have many insights to share on these matters.

    In Canada, where cannabis reform had been discussed for decades, legalisation was advanced not principally to further the freedom to use drugs. Rather, the rationale included recognition that cannabis prohibition had done more harm than good, and that only through legalisation could cannabis be better controlled and regulated towards protecting public health and safety.

    Based on my involvement in Canadian science and policy here is a – certainly incomplete and subjective – list of shared thoughts as New Zealand searches for its own path:

    • Beware of extreme ideological positions: The cannabis policy debate includes extreme claims that cannabis is merely an innocuous drug which, beyond, can miraculously heal many ills – while the counter position suggests that its use inevitably results in severe health harms.

    Neither is correct; rather, the truth lies somewhere in the middle: Much of cannabis use results in no or little problems, although it bears risk for a variety of (physical and mental) health harms.

    Serious harms occur predominantly with young, vulnerable or intensive users consuming high-risk cannabis products. Unfortunately, prohibition has been ineffective in curtailing these risks – but rather amplified many. As with all psychoactive substance use, good policy can at best strive for fear-reaching reductions of harms to public health.

    • Develop consistent policy across substances: Much of the cannabis legalisation debate focuses on legal age of access. While many argue that use should not be allowed until the mid-20s due to alleged health (e.g., brain development) risks for younger users, there is no unequivocal evidence supporting such a cut off.

    The higher the age restriction, the more young users will be excluded from the protective provisions of legalisation, and remain forced into illegality. Moreover, if youth protection was a consistent interest, New Zealand’s legal alcohol age should immediately be elevated, given its equal – if not greater – health risks.

    Best cannabis regulations will inevitably involve compromises, yet there are no evidence-based reasons to regulate cannabis more restrictively than alcohol. Most of the rest is up to good education and prevention efforts.

    • tautoko Griff

      The biggest cannabis-related harm.. is the LAW, that states that all use is: MISUSE (Misuse of Drugs act 1975)

      I agree.. cannabis is not harmless, but Prohibition/Zero-tolerance is actually the real problem. They should move the focus to: Education, treatment (for addiction) & keeping drugs out of the hands of youth, rather than Arrest, prosecute & punish/JAIL the majority they catch.

      Anyone who seriously thinks that the WAR on Drugs is actually working, needs to pull their head out their A & face REALITY.

      Even the Police Exec. admit that ‘We cannot arrest our way out of Drug use’ (paraphrased) BUT they still continue on !

      We actually need a few more BRAVE MPs &/or ‘officials’ to actually admit this, rather than continuing with the ‘Moral High ground’ rhetoric, mostly from Natl MPs

      I hear recent estimates that 70-80% of all kiwis, (15+ yrs). have likely tried the herb, at least once.. BUT you still hear so many, denying it/refusing to answer the question.. “I tried it, man.. BUT I didn’t inhale” OR ‘It was just second-hand smoke at a party’ etc.

      B-S is still B-S.. regardless of how you ‘dress it up’ 😦

    • Gezza

       /  November 27, 2018

      Fuckwits still stupid enuf to send them by mail.

      • I tend to agree that it is stupid
        BUT not only is the herb, getting harder to find, but seeds are ‘rare as hens teeth’ SO Im not surprised to read this is happening. Seeds can be ordered on-line, from countries that HAVE relaxed their cannabis laws

        The cops claim that cannabis is not their main Drug priority.. yet in recent years, it has been broadly stated that, their overzealous activity (alongside RNZAF helicopters) has been ramped up & has created ‘Cannabis droughts’; meanwhile Synthetics & Meth/P are apparently more readily available ?

        It sounds like the Cops & other ‘agencies’ DO see all DRUGS are equally harmful.. else; the more harmful (Class A) & ‘synthetic cannabis’ which has seen many deaths in recent years, would be, by far their REAL priority ! :/

        Old habits… die hard: it keeps them ALL ‘gainfully employed’.. apparently. Seek & Destroy missions !!

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  November 27, 2018

          It’s the Customs dogs who find these things.

          I agree that one would have to be a fool to post and order them. No matter whether one agrees that they should not be illegal, the fact is that they ARE. Why draw attention to yourself ?

          They can’t ignore these things when Bonzo, Rover and Spot bound joyfully up crying ‘Look what I’ve found !’

          • Griff.

             /  November 27, 2018

            Kiwiseeds began in 2002 in an attempt to save some of the fast disappearing ‘old-school’ genetics once the main-stay of the New Zealand/South Pacific marijuana industry. New Zealands main crop up until the 1990’s involved a blend of genetics, mainly sativa, and Haze types bought back during the 70’s by travellers first discovering country’s such as Mexico, Thailand, Vietnam, India, Burma and Cambodia. These plants were typically tall, fast growing sativas that flourished in N.Z’s warm/wet climate and long autumn periods.

            After years of selective breeding these original strains were transformed into names once so familiar to the N.Z smoker and grower. Names such as ‘Tepuke Thunder’ and ‘Coramandel Gold’ were common and when tested were shown to have some of the highest THC content of any outdoor plants anywhere. NZ quickly developed a name for itself as being one of the finest outdoor marijuana producers in the world.

          • This is true, BUT Cannabis is a ‘Class C’ drug (Less Harmful). Meth/P is Class A & Synthetics have caused 45+ deaths, just this year.

            surely the Police need to focus on ‘reducing harm’ not just meeting their Bust targets (regardless of which Class)

            If you watch the news, you will notice that Cannabis busts, still seem to be their main priority ?! 😦

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  November 27, 2018

              I don’t think that they are at all. Theft, rape, violence and other things are surely the most important.

              If there was a target, they wouldn’t be turning a blind eye to people like my friend who is a regular smoker of dope.

            • ‘I don’t think that they are at all. Theft, rape, violence and other things are surely the most important.’ sez Kitty

              I was talking Drug seizure priority.. which reportedly still takes up, vast amounts of their time/resources ?

            • @kitty

              They may ‘turn a blind eye’ to the odd ‘pot smoker’ BUT they are still about wiping out the supply chain/cultivation 😦

        • Gezza

           /  November 27, 2018

          These seek and destroy missions have seen nearly seen cops killed more than once. It would be interesting to see a survey of police officers on their attitudes to it.

          • A cop once told me, that they ‘do not have an opinion’ they are just paid for enforcing the law.. ‘Mindless Automatons’ ?!

            • Gezza

               /  November 27, 2018

              One cop does not speak for the force.

            • True.. but they all come from the same training school !

              * Enter here as a person… then Exit there as a ‘drug seeking/destroying’ Cop.. Its what they do !!

            • Gezza

               /  November 27, 2018

              I dunno. c’s youngest daughter goes out into the mean streets of Auckland to help enforce the law and the peach and resolve trouble & calm people down and gets stabbed with a screwdriver for her trouble.

            • Gezza

               /  November 27, 2018


              *peach = peace :/

  4. Kitty Catkin

     /  November 27, 2018

    Someone else complaining that epipens are not funded and she has to buy them for her child rather than have other people doing so. The cost per week is not that great; who’d grudge that to save their child’s life? The rest of us pay for almost everything else for her child.

    • Gezza

       /  November 27, 2018

      Care co-ordinator came today to assess ma’s help needs, she’s going to need more as her cancer progresses – and says the government doesn’t actually fund someone for housework for a 91 year old like her on superannuation – they say you can find private providers and pay for it – unless someone at the service provider org can “fudge” personal care assistance to unofficially include caring for the carpet in their alloted paid time. That’s not the message Jacinda is putting out”, I said. “What happened to the ‘kindness’?” “I know” she said, and rolled her eyes.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  November 27, 2018

        I would have to sat that I think that there should be a limit to what the taxpayer has to pay for if the person can afford it without being destitute as a result.


        • Gezza

           /  November 27, 2018

          What’s intriguing though is what help others younger and fitter the village are getting & they’re off gadding about more than ma. I could see her scribblng things in the margin in her mutli-page assessement form. Will ma be getting a copy of this assessment. Oh she won’t be getting this one, but she’ll get a summary of what is passed to the service provider. This lady must think I was born yesterday. Ma will be getting a copy of that form and the marginal notes.