It’s all over Tova | The Jackal

9 Jul 2020

It’s all over Tova

Attack journalist - Tova O'Brien
We all know that much of the mainstream media in New Zealand is terribly biased. They are in effect another branch of the National Party, and can often be even more prejudiced than their right wing bosses.

In fact many right wing politicians moonlight as journalists and vice versa, which makes for some terribly lopsided attack articles clogging up our print media. Newshub for instance has an overabundance of morally bankrupt broadcasters who probably couldn’t do balanced reporting even if they tried.

It’s not just Kiwi commentators who've noticed the problem of an extremely biased fourth estate in New Zealand either.

Today, Al Jazeera reported:

How New Zealand's media endangered public health 

The New Zealand government's COVID-19 response was a success story, national media's coverage of it was not. 
Taken over time, New Zealand's reporters have appeared focused on managing perceptions, berating and cajoling a fearful public on numerous fronts. In doing so, and from the earliest stages of a four-level alert system, public health concerns have been eclipsed by a clamouring commentariat, all seeking to score political points and undermine the government's health-first priorities. 
A case can be made that the nation's media, laundering many of the opposition's attack lines and big business talking points, have repeatedly endangered public health.  
This was driven not only by the country's clutch of prominent Fox News-style commentators - Mike Hosking, Heather du Plessis-Allan and Duncan Garner - each of whom hawks anger and division to drive ratings, but by senior reporters and editors. 
The problem with all of this is, however, that the two women who drove to Wellington did not "kiss and cuddle" their friends; that was an incendiary exaggeration by the political opposition. 
After reviewing CCTV footage and interviewing widely, authorities found no evidence that Woodhouse's homeless man existed.  
The media's claims of systemic failings at managed isolation facilities began to look more like isolated instances, blown out of proportion. Numerous returning Kiwis said that the facilities were well run. 
A month on, and with tens of thousands of tests conducted, there is no evidence that the virus has reseeded in, let alone spread throughout, the community. 
The inescapable conclusion is that the media willingly colluded with the opposition's attack lines, relying on the fear and scandal that generated to attract eyeballs - clickbait.

It’s not until you see it documented like this that you realise just how corrupt the mainstream media in New Zealand actually is. In particular, Tova O’Brien, who is perhaps the right wings most prolific manipulator of public perception, comes in for well-deserved recognition in this excellent Al Jazeera opinion piece.

Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a camera capture Tova’s face as she read the honest to goodness truth about her right wing disinformation? The realisation on her wee face that people no longer have the stomach for her particular brand of dirty politics would be priceless.