Simon Bridges promoted as cartoon caricature

I really wonder who thought presenting Simon Bridges as a cartoon character was a good idea.

“Gidday, I’m Simon” sets a cringey scene.

It is unlikely to enhance his image as a serious political proposition. Probably the opposite.

And it has

Promoting a party leader and aspiring Prime Minister as a dopey cartoon character is a great idea…said nobody…ever.

The cartoon really does start with “Gidday, I’m Simon” – voice and subtitle. It continues “I know Kiwis are finding it increasingly difficult to get ahead…”

With this sort of cringe Bridges is likely to find it increasingly difficult to get ahead in political leadership.


Cartoons provoke sexual assault debate

Cartoon by Bruce McKinnon

The Star: Halifax cartoonist’s response to Kavanaugh hearing goes viral

MacKinnon said he was compelled to draw the cartoon, which was published in the weekend edition of The Chronicle Herald, to illustrate what he believes to be a crucial example of how allegations of sexual abuse are treated in North America.

“In a year that was so dominated by the #MeToo movement and the changes that I think we all hope will come from that, this seems to be an almost watershed moment and a very pivotal one for America”.

“I think it’s important that people face up to it. It is disturbing. But it’s exactly the scenario (Ford) described.

“So if we don’t talk about it, if we turn away from it and pretend it isn’t there, we’re not going to solve the problem.”

“I was surprised by the response and really encouraged by the fact that there was so much discourse that came from it, so much open debate,” he said.

“There was a lot of nasty stuff out there too, no question. It does underscore the deep divide and the real polarization of opinion here and in the U.S., but that’s what an editorial cartoon is for: to provoke debate, and hopefully, in the larger picture, some things get worked out.”

A similar cartoon:

But this issue has other important considerations that can’t be ignored either.

New Year’s Resolution: spelling

I make a few mistakes here, including in headlines sometimes. In a hurry, lax, no editor to check things before publication.

I don’t know what the Herald’s excuse is for this:

NZH Catoon

Maybe they could make better spelling a belated New Year’s resolution.

It looks like catoon is a common mistake, I get 3,190,000 results from Google. But that’s exaggerated,  there are multiple hits (six) from this one Herald mistake due to it appearing on different pages linking to the cartoon page.


“Capitulated to the mongrel bastards”

In Ugly reactions at Kiwiblog I linked to contentious Charlie Hebdo cartoons but chose not to show the cartoons myself because I don’t like offensively provocative satire and I don’t fully understand the French context.

The right to choose what one publishes is at least as important as the right to free speech and freedom of the press.

But a comment at Kiwiblog sees things differently. IGM:

DPF: I must endorse Fletch, it is good to see you have intestinal fortitude, unlike Pete George, who has capitulated to the mongrel bastards.

I think that’s a mongrel bastard accusation IGM.  Your attitude and intolerance is as bad in it’s own way as that of the terrorists. All you lack is their physical violence.

“Offensive” cartoon of Dotcom

According to Labour emails leaked to media a cartoon of Kim Dotcom to be used on a Kelvin Davis electorate campaign website “could be viewed as offensive”. It seems quite innocuous.

Tonight in David Cunliffe pulls Kelvin Davis into line over Dotcom attack  3 News claimed to have been leaked the website and showed this as the cartoon:DavisWebsiteCartoonIt’s difficult getting a good screen shot – this version isn’t as clear but has more detail:


This is the email from Labour secretary Tim Barnett:

This website and its messaging is problematic and presents a risk for the Party for the following significant reasons:

  • Its’ overall tone is negative and not consistent with our Vote Positive message
  • The first sentence uses the National Party slogan “Working for New Zealand”
  • The cartoon of Kim dot com is could be viewed as offensive and the website picks a fight with Internet Mana.
  • I know that is your local fight, but to present that nationally would not be helpful when both parties are presenting as progressive
  • The messaging about anonymous donations is inconsistent with Labour Party policy and practice, both at Head Office and across electorate campaigns, and would be messaged by media as.
  • The website has no Party Vote message and does not carry an authorisation statement

For these reasons website I do not believe that the website would receive Publications Committee approval.

Most of those points seem minor and simply correctable. The website would obviously have to have an authorisation statement but that is easily added.

The cartoon is hardly offensive although it is inaccurate, it shows the total Dotcom budget nationally and across all electorates compared to Davis’ single electorate spending limit.

Cartoons and killing

The cartoon issue gets even heavier, a blog post by Metiria Turei…

Does our country really hate us?

I am compelled to consider it after this week of Air NZ and the Ta Moko debacle, and yesterday’s racist cartoons and then reading this morning of Dunne’s new program to help reduce the rate of suicide among Maori and Pacifica people’s.

Yes they are connected.

Our kids saw those cartoons and saw the Air NZ story on TV. Many of our kids would have seen Campbell Live’s poll last night where 70% of people agreed that the cartoons were an accurate portrayal of Polynesian people.
How can we live safely in a country where at the slightest provocation, there is widespread agreement that Maori and Polynesian people are inherently fat, lazy bludgers: and that saying so is so obvious its all just a bit of a laugh?

It’s not safe for our kids in their own country. And so our kids respond as anyone would who lives with daily hostility against their very existence: they rebel, they leave and they kill themselves.

A valid point – to an extent. But this is getting very heavy.

We’ve had hating kids and killing kids by not feeding them in schools.

And now a suggestion we have hating “Maori and Pacifica people’s” which drives them to suicide.

We shouldn’t say or post or publish anything in case it offends someone and the commit suicide? Should everyone fork out and shut up?

A few people might do well to take a big breath.