Author Archive

Busted 2: Sinclair Broadcasting demonstrates what’s “extremely dangerous to our democracy”

How craven is this? (Very.) Highlighted by (among others) Deadspin in ‘How America’s Largest Local TV Owner Turned Its News Anchors Into Soldiers In Trump’s War On The Media‘ Earlier this month, CNN’s Brian Stelter broke the news that Sinclair Broadcast Group, owner or operator of nearly 200 television stations in the U.S., would be […]

Poor @ProtonMail – smeared by its dodgy users

A side issue raised by the Cambridge Analytica exposé is the revelation that the subterranean dirty political operators use a feature of end-to-end encrypted email service ProtonMail – expiring messages (sometimes called ‘self-destructing’ messages, no doubt in homage to TV show Mission: Impossible and its classic line, “This tape will self-destruct in 5 seconds.”) Cambridge […]

Soo busted. Cambridge Analytica’s extensive dirty tricks shopping list exposed

Good god. This is devastating. And, at another level, deeply ironic. Watch below. 19 minutes of your time well-spent. And to think we used to regard Crosby Textor as ratbags, huh? Just goes to show. This exposé also puts into context our local wannabe political activists highlighted in Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics — remember […]

Goosebumps! Morgan James slam dunks another big song

Wow. Again. I remember being struck by this talented vocal artist Morgan James, and her wonderful self-awareness when I bought her album Hunter (we used do that, remember? Before streaming). I posted a nice video (which still works!) at this post: Wow. The talented and likeable Morgan James. The last line she speaks in the […]

Making a pig of it. Jordan Williams has been tardy with his financial reporting obligations

It appears the PR attack machine operated by New Zealand’s most defamed man Jordan Williams (the value of whose reputation has been under review) and his ‘co-founder’, long time National Party political activist David Farrar, has been delinquent in its financial reporting obligations since the end of January this year. The ‘NZ Taxpayers Union Inc’ incorporated society […]

Farewell Stephen Hawking

What can you say about this hero? Boom! By his beliefs he has stopped existing now that he is dead. Fair enough. But few people make the impact he did – those that do, live on in our memory. Their insights ‘live’, recorded in books or other media. What a shadow he cast. – P […]

In the news, 1984. Some photographs.

My (endless?) decluttering continues, and with it, blasts from the past rise to the surface. During 1984, before I trained as a journalist, I set out to create a portfolio of photos of people who interested me – who were ‘In the news’ at the time. As a starting point, I approached figures I’d heard interviewed […]

Jordan Williams and Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance – Putting the ass back into astroturf

Follow this twisted tale … start with Peter WM … I did a quick Google image search on one of the "People like you" from the rate payer association's website. He lives in the USA. I contacted him and he's never heard of the association, let alone been a member. pic.twitter.com/bLO22VdzJE — Peter WM (@pwmxx) […]

Stages of grief after an electoral loss

Don’t let anyone tell you this stuff isn’t real. It’s absolutely natural to cast around for blame, and then a fresh-faced leader after a not-exactly-unexpected-but-oh-boy-we-got-our-hopes-up election loss/disappointment. How long before Dr Jonathan Coleman is persuaded to throw his hat in the ring again? He’ll be getting sweet-talked by now, I reckon. – P

Ask not for whom the bell tolls. (Betteridge’s law of headlines.)

Almost never a good sign: Anyone familiar with Betteridge’s law of headlines knows how that works … But Bill English says calm down, it’s OK. Well, for him, anyway. (That’s too bad about Paula Bennett, then, eh?) Personally, I don’t think Bill English did enough ‘wrong’ in the last New Zealand General Election to deserve […]

Simplify

I wish you well this holiday season. Go well. If you can, refresh & simplify. That second aspect, simplifying, is a path I have been on for a little while now. I’m not finding it easy, but I do feel lighter for every bit of baggage I shed. Also: cycles, seasons & timing are real, […]

Tintin in The Matrix – cool

Wouldn’t this be cool?! h/t to @becs and @CamilleStein

Alec and Sierra ‘Animals’

I loved this couple when they won X-Factor USA. This is from their 2016 album ‘As Seen On TV’. Cool. Sadly for fans like me, they announced in September this year that they’ve decided to stop being a group, after ending their romantic relationship some time earlier. Too bad, but one has to respect their […]

John Key’s flying pig falls to earth

David Fisher took literally years to shed even a little light on how Teflon John Key misled New Zealanders about a mass surveillance system on our internet his government was commissioning for the Americans. The whole very carefully, diplomatically written article is worth reading: John Key, mass surveillance and what really happened when Edward Snowden […]

Murky PR update: ‘The Bloggers Club’

Alex Casey at The Spinoff had some emails leaked to her which revealed a behind-the-scenes attempt at opinion manipulation via news media. See ‘Mum’s the word’: The online influencers secretly paid to go on 1News Two prominent online “influencers” appeared in a 1News story about Kmart without having disclosed payments from a PR company acting […]