Elections come and elections go. Yes, it is simple. Every three years we, as citizens, have that right to vote for those, who we decide, can best manage our affairs. It is important.
This year the people decided to continue with the team they knew and presumably trusted. 52% supported this point of view. Add NZ First and the centre right is 62%. That left Labour and The Greens with 24 and 10 percent respectively. Under MMP that is insufficient to offer an effective opposition.
So toughen up, there will be no effective opposition for the next three years. There will be no Socialist power supply regulator and therefore this destabilising activity resulted in us, as beneficial owners, losing out about $100m in the sale prices. There will also be no 10,000 houses built by the government each year at a cost equal to the whole education vote. Where that money was to come from is still an economic enigma.
Leading up to the election, The Gulf News and Radio Waiheke repeated the pattern established during the Local Board elections. Biased commentary, pictorial emphasis and suggestive voting references. Examples? The blatant front page picture of the Greens candidate complete with rosette, in the Gulf News, three days before the election. Listen also to the Stone/Knight interview early September on Radio Waiheke.
This time it didn't work. So after the election they blamed it all on Jason Ede, the mysterious National back-room blog chatterbox. The wishlist was that he would come forward and confirm that the Prime Minister was a scheming devious 'infantile' rogue.
Several 'commentators' need to take a good look at themselves. These include the editor of the paper and the 'opinionated twosome' particularly Alex Stone. Jason Ede was active three years ago, as Hager's stolen emails identified. Of significance? On balance, one would say not, other than in the eyes of Nicky Hager scrambling for material to justify his book's title.
Back to 'Jason Bourne' Alex. He even has Ede hiding in a Gated Community in Hawaii.
One can assume this is owned by the Prime Minister. Evidence? Any evidence of a close relationship between the two? We are waiting Alex, don't keep us in suspense.
It's a great pity people here who aspire to be commentators or journalists don't cross the Tasman and observe ABC and SBS standards in Australia. These two radio and TV channels have well informed and well prepped staff who provide 'right on the button' commentary.
Media Watch, Four Corners, The World This Week, Lateline and 7.30 are some examples. It is a delight to see people like Leigh Sales and Virginia Trioli in action on important news items with not a shadow of bias in their coverage.
Not so for Alex, Alan and Liz who wear their bias in public, persevering in their litany of anti-right wing hysteria. The 25th September article by Mr Stone included unsubstantiated claims of 'them', hiding Ede, 'black ops' and an 'incompetent' Prime Minister.
Liz wasn't much better waxing lyrical over the again, unsubstantiated claims of Nicky Hager. Neither of them saw fit to question the legitimacy of stealing emails. One can assume it just didn't fit their storyline.
Radio Waiheke uses the excuse that The Opinionated Islanders are merely conforming to their stated objectives. Not so. The same as during the local board election, it came across as blatant biased opinion designed to influence. Let's look at a few comments from their pre-election interview.
'The National Party has no fiscal plan, Labour has', 'Labour in disarray is a baseless allegation', 'why are they hiding Jason Ede?', 'guys elected have deceived us', 'they thought they could bluff it out', 'their defence collapses', 'I'm voting Labour this time', 'Key trying to survive on his record', 'Judith Collins in a cry baby', 'Winston, a cloud of cigarette smoke and whiskey fumes', 'the Nats are not allowing Kaye here', 'she's the one who should face. Very rude', 'don't vote for her'.
This style of smart Alex commentary went on and on. Quality commentary you will not find. Reckless ad lib cynicism you will. Concerning Liz, she has a serial history of bias. Her 25th September editorial is no exception.
It is odd to read her comment on 'governing for all New Zealanders'. After the local body election, comments were vitriolic. We had, for example, Alan Knight promoting Els Verbank pouring scorn on the right wingers for daring to suggest a balanced form of island governance and a right to be heard. 'How dare you!' she ranted to the applause of the lefties.
So the country has a proven National team for three more years. One hopes this government will be fair, inclusive, make sound policies and ensure healthy debate. I never believed the conspiracy theorists. The extracts stolen from private emails were, in the main, the type of comments we all use from time to time.
So what? Well, it had one good aspect. It shuffled all the freaks together into one basket and they all fell down together. It's a pathetic way to try and destroy a government and it failed as it deserved.
Journalists, including commentators, should aspire to excellence and accuracy. Read the news, comment fairly on the news but don't try to be the news. Get it?