Media7: Series 8 Episode 20 (Part 1)





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Published on Jun 14, 2012

Serious analysis of government policy is a vital function of the media in a democratic society.

But in New Zealand we are often poorly served because the mind set of many journalists and commentators decrees that we be fed simplistic narratives, dominated by the concept of "winners" and "losers".

Thus, politics is described as "a game"& and the manoeuvres of the "players" are depicted either as "getting runs on the board", "scoring an own goal", "being overturned" or any of a selection of sporting clichés which trivialise the processes of parliament and the decisions of government.

The recent row which pitted teacher unions and parents against the Minister of Education Hekia Parata was case in point.

When the Minister became the centre of a storm of protest, her handling of the crisis was analysed by the Parliamentary Press Gallery and many political commentators in a completely trivial and clichéd fashion.

This week on Media7 we analyse the distilled wisdom of those who covered this story.

Russell Brown will be joined by commentators Matthew Hooten, Mike Williams and Dr. Bryce Edwards who will examine the process which caused the cliché cupboard to be rifled yet again, as the phrases "policy flip-flop", "defeat" or "humiliating back down" were dutifully dusted off and trotted out.

And after another bloody week in Afghanistan, Media7 will be counting the mounting cost of a lost war.

Coverage of the conflict has all but disappeared from local media despite the continued involvement of the New Zealand Defence Force.

We will be talking with strategic analyst Dr. Paul Buchanan about the legality and morality of the drone strikes which deliberately target alleged terrorists but accidentally kill and maim hundreds of civilians.


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