Liar, liar Hooton’s pants are on fire

It looks like Matthew Hooton’s campaign against the Government is about to unravel

Finally, we have a journalist prepared to look past the PR rubbish and actually examine the dodgy behaviour of those involved in the broadband campaign against the Government.

Now that a bit of sunlight has been shone on this tired old grouping of the disaffected drinking buddies of Hooton, the greedy, the tax dodging ratbags and second rate bloggers, things are about to get interesting.

Hooton has been spinning to his heart’s content that his campaign is about putting more money into the back pockets of Kiwi mum and dads.

Absolute rubbish.

As the NBR’s Chris Keall has revealed (behind the paywall), it looks like the campaign is actually about stuffing that money into the pockets of retail service providers. Hooton couldn’t give a toss about Kiwi mum and dads. 

Basically, no matter what happens regarding the review of the copper broadband price, the price that Chorus can charge for the use of its copper lines will drop – it’s just a matter of how much.

Chorus’ revenues are going to fall, potentially by up to $100 million a year. So just how Hooton can claim the government is giving Chorus $600 million is beyond me.

The drop in price means it will be cheaper for the retail service providers to offer broadband to their customers. So you would assume they would then pass on that saving to its customers.

Here’s where things get interesting.

Retail service providers, Orcon and CallPlus, are two of the main players in Hooton’s campaign, but the NBR’s Chris Keall has caught them with their pants down.

It appears Orcon and CallPlus are going to keep the money for themselves, rather than pass the savings on to their customers.

Keall asked Orcon chief executive Greg McAlister if he would pass on 100 per cent of the price cuts to customers, and the response from the chief executive was: “It’s complicated”

It’s complicated? No it’s not. Orcon is openly campaigning on behalf of Kiwi mum and dads to give them lower broadband prices (which is what the Government actually proposes to do), but its chief executive than refuses to confirm that he will pass on the savings to customers.

Keall also asked CallPus chief executive Mark Callander the same question and he refused to respond with a yes or a no. Instead he resorted to some of Hooton’s lines he had no doubt been rehearsing for days.

It’s time for journalists to look past the PR hyperbole and ask all retail service providers if they intend to pass on the savings to customers.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.

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