Casualties of Dirty Politics | The Jackal

24 Aug 2014

Casualties of Dirty Politics

It has been interesting to see the mainstream medias response to Nicky Hager's new book, Dirty Politics. Some journalists have chosen to take a rather lop-sided view while others have rightly expressed their utter distaste at what has transpired. A few right wing journalists have even had a tantrum about their beloved National party getting slated!

Of course there's the more prominent casualties like attack blogger Cameron Slater, who will face a number of prosecutions if he ever grows a pair and returns to New Zealand. His accomplices might not know it yet, but David Farrar, Simon Lusk, Aaron Bhatnagar and Jason Ede's careers are effectively over as well.

Furthermore, there's the damage done to John Key himself and various National party Ministers implicated in the Dirty Politics scandal whose credibility is now in tatters. They know that the National party, because of their black-op teams activity, will be another casualty at the upcoming election and have generally reacted terribly to this news.

Perhaps the biggest overreaction however was from right wing spin-doctor Bill Ralston, who after reading the disgusting emails between propagandist Cameron Slater and National party official Aaron Bhatnagar, coupled with a bit of reactive tweeting, decided to pack a sad and quit twitter:

Other so-called journalists have had their careers entirely extinguished because of their involvement in National's dirty politics. Cathy Odgers AKA Cactus Kate for instance is one such causality with the NZ Herald dropping her like a stone. Published on Friday, the issues this excellent post by Naked Capitalism raise show why Cactus Kate is all washed up with nowhere to go.

To their credit, the more dedicated right wing journalists have decided to stick it out and try to defend the embattled and beleaguered Prime Minister. There's not many of them, but most notably the overzealous Mike Hosking hasn't retracted his initial incorrect statements about nor apologised for his unfounded attack on Nicky Hager.

Jane Clifton in the Listener has also come out strongly in support of the National party, despite seemingly not having read the book let alone the leaked emails that verify its claims. Like Hosking, she stupidly tries to attack Hager's credibility, something that has utterly failed to work as a defense for National's despicable and undemocratic behaviour.

Wheezing with anger, Sean Plunket also had a go at Selwyn Manning over what the book reveals. However, the person who's been trying to front-foot one of the main issues on behalf of the National government has been Fairfax political journalist Andrea Vance. She tried to defend the indefensible actions of Justice Minister Judith Collins on The Nation yesterday, claiming that it's not unusual to have Official Information Act requests fast-tracked by Ministers.

After a bit of negative commentary about her ludicrous stance, Vance took to twitter to try and defend her biased opinion. She then went on to tweet that at the time Cameron Slater received preferential treatment from Judith Collins and the then head of the SIS Warren Tucker, other media outlets had also received the requested information at the same time. Here's our twitter exchange:

What makes her assertions patently false is a video of a press conference with the Prime Minister taken after the SIS OIA release to Cameron Slater showing a reputable reporter stating that they were still waiting for the requested information.

The video also shows John Key stating that he was briefed about the OIA release. Clearly he knew about the information that was released to their attack blogger Cameron Slater, which totally contradicts his more recent statements:

I guess that John Key, his minders and Andrea Vance have absolutely no respect for the general publics intelligence or they're just too stupid to remember what actually happened and what the Prime Minister said back in August 2011.

The Prime Ministers machinations aside, the main casualty in all of this is unfortunately our democracy, which has been badly abused by the National government and their propagandists.

Clearly it's time for a more honest and intelligent administration in New Zealand. Therefore let's vote the corrupt National government out on September 20.