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Humourless prats at the top

  • May 3rd, 2008

Chester Borrows MP has the right instincts. He’s slammed the suspension of a policeman for email circulation of self mockery.

The kind of culture that suspends for such humour permeates from the very top. A healthy organisation welcomes humour when its people are unavoidably in high stress circumstances. For emergency services people, soldiers, and lawyers the coping humour will often be black.

But the grim prats in power fear the sound of genuine laughter. 

My post last weekend of the Danish Road Safety Council’s traffic safety spoof ran into the same culture, abetted by abysmal journalistic standards. With pursed lips the Herald reported ” a storm” erupting over the posting. The storm was one email from a Labour stooge purporting to be from a National voter but not verified when the journalist concerned called me. In all my subsequent email traffic I had only encouragement.

A brief scan of the comment string on David Farrar’s blog on the topic showed outrage from one Labour stooge. Virtually every other comment sliced him. His hypocrisy was fully exposed on NZ Conservative.

Some storm.

Thus Labour’s sour culture is faithfully reflected by the media establishment. Since the Electoral Finance Act my freedom of speech rests on journalist shoulders. I can’t  speak directly by mail, or print media to voters in my electorate. We depend on journalists’ judgement and integrity to detect and report fraud and hypocrisy. We rely on their scepticism.

Given my experience of it last weekend I can only look for a silver lining, and hope that young journalists’ willingness to be conned by ruling party tricks will serve a new team after the election at the top as dutifully as it serves the grim crew now ruling.

PS To be fair to the journalist concerned at least he told me he thought the video was funny. Some young ones are so thoroughly educated in NZ’s sour official culture that they’re pained by the things ordinary people laugh at.



Excellent post Stephen. I have run my own version over at Keeping Stock

Your comments about freedom of speech are enlightening. I wonder if the public at large is now starting to appreciate just how draconian the EFA is (and was intended to be!), and that all the negative comment during its passge through the House was not the rantings of the “Kiwiblog Right”, but was actually considered and accurate criticism.


absolutely my friend,
this jerk over at kiwiblogblog was saying you said the word sex, or a picture or something,
poor little person that is,
he don’t have any opinion except that of PC helengrand anaplastic destruction of our great country
my god everyone has jokes to keep them on track,
and so do many professions, and I do,
but it doesn’t matter

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