Media access tightened in Parliament

March 21st, 2008 at 11:36 am by David Farrar

I think the Speaker has over reacted by banning media access to the ground floor of Parliament House where the select committees meet. Following Brian Connell to outside the toilet was probably unwise by , but the should have access to MPs when they are going into and out of the House and Select Committees.

While it is not a co-ordinated programme, the cumulative effect of growing media restrictions is a cause for concern. blogged last week on a public forum (I was going to attend but got too busy) by the Chairs of the NZ and Australian Press Councils and a member fo the NZ Law Commission. The comments below come from retired High Court Judge who chairs the NZ :

He is worried that statutes and regulations may be chipping away at freedom of expression. Examples: restrictions on reporting about suicide in the Coroners Act; the proposal to restrict access to births, deaths and marriages registers; the restrictions on policitcal speech in the Electoral Finance Act (he was surprised that the Crown Law Office vet deferred to the government’s political judgment, and that this “margin of appreciation” could tip a finely balanced freedom of expression issue in favour of allowing encroachment); the possibility of wide codes, and later regulations, aimed at non-communicable diseases, affecting the advertising, sponsorship and marketing of particular goods under the Public Health Bill; and the proposal to amalgamate regulation of various media platforms.

On numerous fronts, the right to know and the right to get encroached.

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24 Responses to “Media access tightened in Parliament”

  1. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    No, I think that MPs as priviledged members of our society- should be afforded extra protection form the troublesome interference that the so-called media and ‘public opinion’ sometimes sees fit to inflict upon them. Then we can look at election years and later actual elections.

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  2. dad4justice (8,214 comments) says:

    This scurrilous big sister government likes the shady blinds pulled down. Freedom of expression by our disrespectful and privileged public servants should be open for public scrutiny.

    This is another staggering disgrace from a criminal government that dwells in corruption.

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  3. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    A new phrase for Helengrad. Move out!

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  4. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    Drip by drip, bit by bit our freedoms are taken from us. My wife will now not let me fill out any satistics required by various government departments as most of my answers are deemed “unhelpful”, I say fuck them!!. The government can release or hold any information it sees fit but the peasants must tell all. Most of the information we are told is of great importance to the government, to right it is, the bastards use this information against us. The government is slowly restricting the information we are aloud to see and hear, we do not enjoy the same privilege. One of the best ways to fight this sort of government is to be economic with the truth. Two can play their came.

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  5. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    “Following Brian Connell to outside the toilet was probably unwise by TVNZ, ”

    Bloody stupid, lazy and a but feeble minded more likley. They do that sort of thing in New York – people selling junk bonds and that sort of crap.

    TV1 coud have made great story about what the cost would have bought and that Dover was off to Ausy as soon as he retired from Parliament, etc, etc.

    But what did they do – they had some stupid reported waiting outside the toilet asking if an Mp was taking his wife.

    What bloody business is that as long as the taxpayer wasnt paying. Honestly the crasness of some of these TV people is hard to fathom sometimes.

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  6. Graeme Edgeler (3,289 comments) says:

    Trevor Mallard’s response was interesting: “I think it’s really important that they stay as free as any other Parliament.”

    The point behind which is that they are free-er than any other Parliament, so further restrictions aren’t that bad…

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  7. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    Graeme Edgeler

    I know it’s not your comparison, but comparisons to other countries are a bit of a mute point. The issue here is that “OUR” freedoms are being erroded. OUR freedoms are changing. How they compare to others is simply justification for changing them. I guess we just need to make up our minds. Do we move on and accept this in NZ this or de we move on from NZ.

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  8. Gooner (995 comments) says:

    I distinctly recall the first things Margaret Wilson tried to do in 1999 when elected: bring back criminal defamation and promote the banning of hate speech. To me that really showed where her line of thinking was and it has manifested itself in many, many ways.

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  9. dad4justice (8,214 comments) says:

    Ms Wilson doesn’t like F4J Batman.She banned him from parliament grounds after a successful Bat Mission.

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  10. reid (16,442 comments) says:

    Lefties are masters at media management and restrictions on free speech and media access are an integral part of that.

    Wilson is the least neutral speaker in my memory, surpassing Hunt by a mile. Most of them in the past have left their politics at the door and turned their loyalty toward the grand institution which they lead and manage. In the term of the 5th Liarbore govt we have seen not one but two examples of the worst speaker bias I have ever seen. Thank goodness Liarbore won’t be re-elected for then it would be almost certainly three for three. Even two for two shows a deliberate policy and clearly demonstrates to those with eyes the execrable nature of the beast that inhabits Level 9.

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  11. kiki (425 comments) says:

    This is linked to the debate about the countries we deal with such as China. I thought about the problem of living in a world surrounded by states such as china, Fiji, Indonesia etc. and I came to the conclusion you can’t force these countries to change or boycott them but we can live by example.

    If we want to change the world at the very least we must practice what we preach and if we as a country we believe in freedom then we should back this with actions.

    This starts with an unrestricted media as corruption and oppression only grow where layers of oppressive government provide the shady conditions.

    The state and it’s people must up hold the freedom of the individual as the most important aspect of a government. If at any point the state or a group of people inside or outside the state become more important than the individual then freedom is lost. At that point the individual can no longer be held accountable for any actions they take to restore their freedom.

    Cullen thinks a piece of tar-seal is a strategic asset but a free mind is the greatest asset we have.

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  12. DanielM (38 comments) says:

    barry said,

    But what did they do – they had some stupid reported waiting outside the toilet asking if an Mp was taking his wife.

    What bloody business is that as long as the taxpayer wasnt paying.

    That’s exactly what TVNZ was asking “Is your wife going with you and is the taxpayer paying for it?” It was asked 18 times yet Brian Connell didn’t give one straight answer!

    This is a gross overreaction, and the sooner she leaves, the better!

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  13. Inventory2 (10,337 comments) says:

    More power, more control – hardly surprising then that Roy Morgan has some VERY bad news for the Government (just when you thought they’d had a good fortnight!!)

    http://keepingstock.blogspot.com/2008/03/roy-morgan-march-poll.html

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  14. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    DanielM

    The business of taking his wife is interesting. He said if his wife did go then he would use his business class airfare to buy two enonomy class airfares so it wouldn’t cost us anymore.

    So lets look at this. If he travels by himself he “needs” to fly business class at our expense. But if he chooses to take his wife he’s happy to fly economy so that it costs him nothing for her to go.

    It’s wrong. If he’s prepared to fly economy then he should fly economy and sufe us the difference between economy and business class. If he wants his wife to go he can pay for it. Simple simple simple. It’s this sort of taking the piss that should be exposed.

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  15. Inventory2 (10,337 comments) says:

    Reid said “Wilson is the least neutral speaker in my memory, surpassing Hunt by a mile.”

    You won’t get any argument from me on that Reid. She has certainly taken partisanship to new heights in the way she runs the House. IMHO, she is the worst Speaker im my memory, with the possible exception of the late Dr Gerry Wall.

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  16. berend (1,708 comments) says:

    DPF: On numerous fronts, the right to know and the right to free speech get encroached.

    Just lefties doing their business as usual. As Helen said: governments can do what they like to do.

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  17. ben (2,379 comments) says:

    My accountant is not allowed by law, she said, to give me her opinion on Kiwisaver.

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  18. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    ben

    There is a risk to the govt that your accountant might give you advice that conflicts with the offical opinions of Helengrad.

    Get over it or get overseas. This is what life in NZ is becoming – put up or shut up.

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  19. Mark (496 comments) says:

    Has was the media to know he was going to the bathroom for f*@K sake. Once the realized he was going in to the bathroom they stopped at the door and didn’t go in.

    Do MPs know have to issue press release when they need to pee and not be distrubed by the media.

    The sooner Wilson is gone the better. The most incomptent speaker in over 100 years.

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  20. Bob (497 comments) says:

    There is also the suggestion that Telcos should be required to record text messages to make the job of the police easier. I am totally against it. Text messages, telephone conversations, emails and standard mail are private. If the police need access to messsages relating to crime they should only be able to order recording of specific messages relating to the crime or criminals.

    Our freedoms are whittled away little by little each move seemingly justified.

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  21. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    You are on to it Bob. I say fuck the bastards, for every law and every freedom we give up do we get a better society or better way of life?.I say no. This government hides behind words like terrorism for the excuse for new laws. I say they are wrong and they know it, it’s about control.

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  22. doodle (1 comment) says:

    Warning*****This is off topic. I am an American doing research on New Zealand political blogs. I was hoping you might be able to suggest some sites for me to cheack out for my research. I would greatly appreciate any hints or suggestion you might have. Thank you!

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  23. reid (16,442 comments) says:

    doodle this is the top rated blog in NZ for hits/day, political or otherwise. Have a look at the blogroll here (see the pages links top left on the homepage.)

    For left sites, top raters are Public Address and No Right Turn. There is also one called The Standard but don’t know what the hit rate is for that one.

    For right sites see this one, Whale Oil Beef Hooked, No Minister, The Hive.

    I think a few weeks ago there were posts on most of these covering the latest hit rates, so search the archives. Start with searching the archives on this one, he always publishes these once a month.

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  24. reid (16,442 comments) says:

    Also doodle look at tbr.cc (A.K.A the briefing room) which is an affiliated site of Investigate Magazine.

    If it helps in your research, I am not affiliated in any way with the blogs I have mentioned, I post on them all, but am not involved with any.

    Contact me at reid@infoworks.co.nz if you need verification for your research.

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