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Andrew Bolt on the bias of media

Andrew Bolt shares remarkably similar thoughts to my own on the inherent bias of media personalities.

What’s relatively new is journalists being called out publicly for their bias. For many years, when dissent was punished or simply not published, journalists congratulated each other on being balanced – or at least seeming so.

I’m talking of the time when even George Negus – Negus! – was assumed to be impartial. When Phillip Adams was seen as at the centre of respectable opinion. When the ABC defined the middle ground.

I think one of the sources of the rage so many journalists have for the likes of me is that we are now calling out this fraud, using endless evidence. I have no hesitation in leveling with the audience and announcing my own biases – humanist, conservative, liberal, rationalist and individualist – but I have no hesitation in pointing out the biases of others in the media, too, particularly on the ABC. For a start, I want to end this deceit that the ABC is balanced and not at all leaning to the Left.

ABC presenters have been outraged to have their cover blown. Some – Jonathan Green, Virginia Trioli and Patricia Karvelas – profess astonishment at being identified as Left leaning, either because they are simply not self aware or because they don’t want you to know where they lie.

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Paula Bennett’s Graceless Attacks on Helen Kelly

Regular readers will know that CTU President Helen Kelly is one of the sworn enemies of this blog, and one of the left-wingers who make us get up in the morning to keep fighting the good fight.

Unfortunately Helen Kelly is suffering from lung cancer, and has been through some very tough therapies that have made her very, very ill.

She has made some over-the-top and overly-aggressive decisions that are totally out of character as Kelly is usually reasoned and pragmatic, even if she is wrong. Her staff, friends and advisors have been discretely telling people and asking them to show some compassion and forgiveness.

Which is why Paula Bennett’s graceless twitter attacks on Helen Kelly are unacceptable.   Read more »

Watching the left and other media lose their shit over Rachel Glucina is hilarious

Yesterday Rachel Glucina announced she was leaving the NZ Herald, and moving to Mediaworks for a new project. Good on her.

What unfolded next was weapons grade howling from the left wing, conspiracy theories suggesting John Key had her placed at Mediaworks and media people all jumping on Twitter losing their shit.

It was hilarious to watch. The only thing that would be funnier would be if Mediaworks announced that I was to be their new talk show host weekdays.

But it got me thinking.

Why do all these media luvvies think they are immune from changes in the market and circumstances of the companies they work for?

Take Paula Penfold…she confessed on Twitter that the only reason she is staying with Mediaworks is because she has nowhere else to go.

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The whitebait equivalent of a sex doll

Wira Gardiner will be face-palming this morning wondering why he decided to have a crack at me on Twitter the past few days. He’s clearly still bitter that I spiked his rather gauche attempt to become the president of the National party back a few years. He spat the dummy and left the party.

Now we know what he has been doing in the interceding years…launching the whitebait equivalent of a sex doll.

Whitebait will be available year-round and there will never be shortages again, claims a company that has started quietly farming the juvenile fish delicacy.

A company chaired by National Party supporter Sir Wira Gardiner, the husband of Education Minister Hekia Parata, is about to start selling farmed whitebait to restaurants.

It’s hoped the business will become a multi-million-dollar operation, eventually selling  whitebait through retail outlets and exporting them.

The company, Premium Whitebait, has signed a contract with Mahurangi Technical Institute (MTI) in Warkworth, which developed the technology to breed whitebait in captivity, to take the venture to market.

Des McEnaney, president of the West Coast Whitebaiters Association, was sceptical about what a farming venture would do for stocks in the wild, as commercial operators were taking large quantities.

“The only way they could release pressure on wild stock would be to take over the commercial market and put the others out of business, and I don’t think that’s likely.”   Read more »

David Clark doesn’t get it

David Clark is one of those genius politicians who thinks that social media will win it for them.

Consequently he blathers on all day on Facebook and Twitter.

But he just doesn’t get it.

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Dirty Politics journo? I think not

Giovanni Tiso is a hateful little troll and a Twitter terrorist.

He is having a bash at Heather du Plessis-Allan

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The slow death of Twitter

I have often said, to anyone who asks my point of view about Twitter, that Twitter is irrelevant and useless as a political tool. It has become the domain of bullies and tossers.

Any politician who thinks or says that Twitter is a valuable tool for engagement is bereft of brain cells. Anyone who calls themselves a social media guru is a fraud.

Twitter is not the real world, and this is especially relevant in New Zealand where the reality is just a few hundred people drive most of the traffic and comment and chat and felch each other in a mutual circle jerk waiting for the next target of their circle of hate.

Most people don’t even know what Twitter is much less a hashtag.

Damian Thompson outlines at the Daily Mail his analysis of how bereft of relevance Twitter has become.

The truth is that Twitter has lost its magic. For compulsive tweeters such as me, the system seems fine on the surface — buzzing away as merrily as ever. But the fact is that Twitter is in deep trouble.

Panic set in at the company’s San Francisco HQ long before this week’s fiasco.

Its baby-faced vegan co-founder Biz Stone (real name Christopher Isaac Stone) is a worried man. So are Jack Dorsey and Noah Glass, with whom he launched the project in 2006.

In less than a decade, Twitter has become part of the fabric of many people’s lives.

We users go on to Twitter to post pictures of our children’s birthday parties, to tease our mates about the drunken pass they made last night, to suck up to the boss, to promote our businesses — and, shamefully, to follow the witterings of celebrities.

The American pop star Katy Perry has 68 million followers, making her the world’s number one tweeter. Sample tweet from this week: ‘My heart breaks w/the rising toll from the #NepalEarthquake’ — a shocking tragedy indeed, but also an opportunity for our Katy to cash in by showing off her boundless compassion. Celebs love using Twitter for this purpose.

But Katy Perry also uses Instagram, the photo-sharing app with 300 million users that turned ‘selfies’ into a worldwide fad. And that’s where her target audience of teenagers follows her.

By contrast, Twitter is, like, just so old-fashioned — i.e., ancient history. Tell them that Barack Obama and the Pope are now tweeters, and they’ll just shrug — convinced that Twitter is for old people, meaning anyone over 25.

Indeed, Instagram is ruining Twitter’s business model. Even more deadly is WhatsApp — free for the first year before charging a tiny fee — which enables people to send text messages, photos, videos etc from their smartphones. It has 800 million active users.

The rival social messaging site Facebook predicted that the number could soon rise to three billion and thus bought WhatsApp for $19 billion. And it also owns Instagram.

One of Twitter’s big problems is that it doesn’t gather enough commercially valuable information about its users to target ads as effectively as some of its rivals can.

And although the cool kids now think tweeting is lame, there aren’t enough of them deserting the site to account for Twitter’s dramatic slowing down in growth.

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Tweets of the Day

Yesterday Julie Anne Genter was pushing her climate change agenda because of a little bit of extra rain in Wellington.

The poor petals are quite upset and blaming climate change for the floods. I jumped in and pointed out that it was alarmism, and no big deal…they’ve had a rainy day.

Keith Ng, that brilliant journalist who once raised a couple of thousand dollars for a post on hacking WINZ terminals and a good mate of the Tweeting left asked me this:

ng-tweet Read more »

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Left wing whinging is becoming embarrassing, some are now writing about it

The left whinge unhinged in NZ after the election and their trouncing by John Key.

The same has happened in the UK and it is becoming embarrassing. So much so that some lefties are taking to the Telegraph to explain how embarrassing the whinging has become.

I’m pretty sure that the best moment of Ed Miliband’s election actually came shortly after he resigned, when he turned up at the Cenotaph to take part in the VE Day ceremony.

Here was a man who had just seen his career destroyed, a man who probably hadn’t slept for two days, and yet he still managed to put on a clean suit and make peace with his political enemy to pay tribute to the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives in the Second World War. The Sun called this moment “awkward”, but I actually thought it was pretty awesome, a sign of all that is great about Britain and its traditions. It was just a shame that so many other members of the Left didn’t share his dignity in defeat.

You do have to admire Miliband getting up to go and do that. He might be a spas but he has decorum.

Less than 24 hours later, anti-Tory protestors had desecrated the Women of World War Two memorial on Whitehall. “F*** Tory Scum” was the charming note left in red graffiti. Laurie Penny, a darling of the Left, tweeted that she didn’t have a problem with the vandalism – she argued that the real vandals were sitting in Downing Street, breaking up the welfare state

Elsewhere on social media, Labour supporters spent much of Friday laying in to anyone who had voted Conservative. “Who are these ***** who voted Tory?” wrote one friend on Facebook. “To the selfish morons who voted for Cameron et al: I hope you are proud of yourselves,” wrote another. “I hope you enjoy your slightly lower taxes, you shameless, shameless human beings.”

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No wonder she keeps losing to Nikki Kaye

Jacinda Ardern has a puff piece written about her in the Marlborough Express.

It is all a bit sick inducing but there is this bit that is interesting.

Speaking with the Express before her talk, Ardern said she had chosen to share lessons she had learnt as a politician using social media in her presentation.

The series of RISE presentations had the theme, ‘Stand out in the world of digital disruption’.

Ardern, who has 26,000 ‘Likes’ on Facebook and 32,700 followers on Twitter, said social media was a good way of showing people what makes you tick as a politician.

The time where politicians simply broadcasted their views on political issues had passed, Ardern said.

“People aren’t looking for press statements online – they’re looking for who you are.

“Some of the most popular posts on Facebook aren’t political. They’re pictures of my mother.”   Read more »