Labour attacked TVNZ and Mike Hosking this past week, ostensibly because Hosking is supposedly bias against David Cunliffe.
They presumably would have not uttered a word had Shane Taurima managed to continue as a covert Labour apologist at TVNZ and they had chosen him. They certainly haven’t complained that John Campbell is bias, so one can only presume that if the bias is against them is is unfair and if for them perfectly ok.
The only reason they did this was to frame the debates ahead of time as being unhelpful to David Cunliffe and to frame up his pending loss int eh debates to John Key as someone elses fault, hosking’s, for being biased.
Phil Quin explains:
Labour has been¬†bleating¬†about Mike Hosking being used as moderator in a TVNZ election debate. There is even the unconvincing talk that Labour may boycott the debate if Hosking takes that role. As the story goes, Hosking called Cunliffe a moron because he gave his state of the nation address on Auckland’s anniversary day and has demonstrated a pattern of antipathy towards Labour over a sustained period.
Hosking, as we know, is a flagrant Tory sympathiser, in New Zealand‚Äôs low-octane shock-jock sort of way.
Exposing him as such is, I’m told, Matt McCarten’s latest genius ploy.
Here‚Äôs the thing, though. Everyone in New Zealand with enough interest in politics to sit through a televised debate knows full well that Hosking dislikes the Labour Party, adores Key and probably thinks Cunliffe is a moron or worse. But this is not bad for Labour and Cunliffe. This is great for Labour and Cunliffe.
Debates are about expectations. If people think you‚Äôre going to do well, you invariably do poorly. If the public expect a trainwreck, more often than not you come out the ‚Äúwinner‚ÄĚ. It‚Äôs not really about the substance of these debates ‚Äď they rarely have much of that ‚Äď but about how the contestants performed compared to expectations leading in.
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