Questions Radio NZ did not ask

June 28th, 2012 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

did an interview with a Dave Wooley on ACC this morning. I suspect they are going to interview a disgruntled person a day. Now I think it is fine to interview disgruntled people with , but media should be balanced, and actually ask questions, not just allow one side of the story – especially as can not talk about individual cases in the media generally.

Mr Wooley had a work related accident in 2006 and has just gone off ACC compensation. Radio NZ said his family of six now live off his wife’s salary of $26,000. For a start this is clearly false. They would get WFF of $363 a week (net) on top of that, plus possible accommodation allowance.

They also reported he gets $23 a week benefit and claims that half of that is $11.50 a week to live on. Radio NZ reported this as fact, and never asked him about WFF.

Not only did Radio NZ fail to ask about WFF, and allowed the repeated assertion of a family of six surviving on $26,000 a year, they did not ask a single question about why he was no longer getting ACC. No question about what the medical assessor determined.  No question on what the independent review by Disputes Resolution Service found. No question about anything – just allowed him to say whatever he likes unchallenged.

I have said that some parts of the ACC culture do need changing, and they do. But this does not mean you accept without challenge every claim by every individual who thinks they should receive ACC support. That is not journalism. Next time I hope Radio NZ at least attempt to ask pertinent questions.

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43 Responses to “Questions Radio NZ did not ask”

  1. BeaB (2,123 comments) says:

    Well said. Even I could see the story was a very partial one. A poor showing all round.
    Is this why we have a state broadcaster?

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  2. Nostalgia-NZ (5,202 comments) says:

    Bit harsh to say that what he said was false, unless he was denying getting those benefits. Thousand of families live off a single wage but may still get financial assistance of some sort, particularly WFF – but if you asked, they, in most cases, say they live from a single income. I don’t think the lack of clarification of those questions is the fault of Dave Wooley, it sounds more like you having a go at him for questions you feel that RNZ didn’t ask.

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  3. Pete George (23,560 comments) says:

    Nostalgia-NZ – he is having a go at RNZ for not asking adequate questions on income and credits etc. It can make a big difference.

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  4. hj (7,011 comments) says:

    The woman wanting funding for more counselling was told try moving on. More counselling is a big black hole if no one can find the light switch in a reasonable time.

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  5. Positan (390 comments) says:

    “That is not journalism.”

    Journalism??? From the state broadcaster???

    What a quaint thought. Whatever next?

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  6. hj (7,011 comments) says:

    I heard Kevin Hague talking about a “culture of dis-entitlement” (too many false negatives). I can see how private companies might have an advantage as it is expected of the state to be everyone’s rich uncle. If we take out private insurance we may be able to choose a company character whereby cheaper rates equal “we say no more often”.

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  7. Nostalgia-NZ (5,202 comments) says:

    Okay Pete George.

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  8. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    RNZ should have been shut down years ago.

    That National allow it to remain out there with its obvious left wing propaganda is testament to how lacking in intestinal fortitude that party really is.

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  9. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    RNZ should have been shut down years ago.

    That National allow it to remain out there with its obvious left wing propaganda is testament to how lacking in intestinal fortitude that party really is.

    Hear hear!

    Political dissent must be crushed. I hears ya, comrade redbaiter! :twisted:

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  10. grumpy (260 comments) says:

    RRM, so you agree that RNZ just provides “political dissent”?

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  11. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    That woman (Katherine) who does the 9 – 12 programme – often shows signs of being taken in – or more correctly taking herself in.

    Sometimes you hear her carry on in a pseudo-grief fashion and you wonder why she isnt interviewing herself – that way she would get the answers she wants.

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  12. Brian Smaller (4,023 comments) says:

    It is RNZ. What do you expect? Any sort of balance?

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  13. Archer (208 comments) says:

    Which host was responsible for this?

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  14. trout (939 comments) says:

    No question in the interview whether or not Mr. Wooley’s ongoing problem was accident related or a health issue – it seems that the review committee believed it to be the latter. There is pressure to extend the cover of ACC (there is presently a case before the Human Rights Tribunal) to cover all sickness and disability. This would be an incredibly expensive extension of State welfare and would, in the end bankrupt ACC.

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  15. wf (441 comments) says:

    IMO, you get ACC until you have been ‘rehabilitated’ as much as can be, and then you adjust to life as best you can.

    Life is unfair. I knew a man who got 80% compensation after he broke his neck surfing. He was a company director and didn’t need any financial help.

    Another (at the same time) got a tumor on his spinal cord which was inoperable, and he slowly died while his teenaged kids and their mother watched helplessly by, their standard of living shrinking month by month.

    Back in the early 80’s (we didn’t have WFF) when we were told that we’d get $8 a week compensation for my husband’s ‘compensation’, he stayed home and tried to look after 3 kids, and I worked longer hours. We thought we could manage, and we did.

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  16. Mark (496 comments) says:

    Why do we fund Radio NZ at all, it’s not like there is a shortage of radio stations in NZ.

    It’s time to end their tax payer funding and use the money to fund more health, education, etc.

    These pinkos are stealing from hardworking NZders to support thier left-wing, green, marxist version of the world that doesn’t exist and will never exist. Retards.

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  17. expat (4,050 comments) says:

    “Next time I hope Radio NZ at least attempt to ask pertinent questions.”

    HA HA HA. Fat chance.

    The only questions Pravda asks are ones planted by PR weasels from the Greens or Labour.

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  18. GPT1 (2,121 comments) says:

    How about RNZ says we’d love to interview you but here’s the waiver you need to sign so ACC can reply

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  19. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Excellent suggestion GPT1
    We still need Radio New Zealand though, who else would play the Garrison Keillor Radio Show?

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  20. expat (4,050 comments) says:

    or give masses of exposure to left wing mouthpieces

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  21. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Or the cool film reviews?

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  22. Ricardo (54 comments) says:

    it’s not like there is a shortage of radio stations in NZ

    Yeah, but have you heard the crap they broadcast??

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  23. Leaping Jimmy (16,447 comments) says:

    This seems to be a new tactic they’ve recently adopted. On a given issue, take people off the street, or victims, or whomever appears to have the “correct” view and then interview them for a very significant amount of time, pretending that they’re some kind of authoritative source of information. Here’s an “Auckland businessman” on Tuesday’s Checkpoint talking about the asset sales. This is not serious journalism, it’s emotive sensationalism disguised as serious journalism. Taxpayers should not be required to pay for this kind of tactic, ever.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/2523105/more-from-an-asset-sales-plan-critic.asx

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  24. adamsmith1922 (890 comments) says:

    DPF

    Why would you think Radio NZ was ‘independent’ it is a Labour hotbed

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  25. Steve (North Shore) (4,561 comments) says:

    Radio NZ is just shit, just like the Herald, SST, HOS, TV1, TV3. It’s all about sensationalism.
    This causes ACC to get their back up, which means those with genuine claims end up facing the wall of ACC bureaucrats.
    Poor poor people, all to sell air time

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  26. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Radio New Zealand is an invaluable social and cultural institution. The comparative pittance we pay to support some radio and TV, museums, music, libraries, art, etc goes a long way to make this a more wonderful country than it would be otherwise.

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  27. nasska (11,491 comments) says:

    mikenmild

    …”Radio New Zealand is an invaluable social and cultural institution”…..

    Are you certain that you don’t live under a bridge & molest passing goats? How on earth could the description of NZ being a wonderful country be compromised by getting rid of a socialist rats’ nest like Red Radio? Public broadcasting was originally set up so that big money couldn’t control people’s thinking.

    Now it is a breeding ground for the rabid & deranged!

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  28. the deity formerly known as nigel6888 (852 comments) says:

    good grief, someone still listens to radio PPTA, who knew.

    I gave up listening to their bullshit over a year ago, i turned to newstalk, where despite my expectations (and I wrote and complained about Mike Hosking back when he was on moaning report) it is interesting, well argued, gets all the important guests on, and is above all, fun.

    Who knew?

    I particularly enjoy steven joyce and annette king on a wednesday morning, the PM every Monday and the actually quite insightful commentary

    oh and did I mention, its fun.

    the constant tut tutting earnestness of radio PPTA and the constant desire to interview pinko after pinko, and then give the pinkos their own shows pretty much 24/7 gets very dull and wearing after a while.

    Why do we fund this crap through our taxes anyway? and to prove my point, I am OK about funding concert FM for the wrinklies, at least concert Fm concentrates on quality broadcasting.

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  29. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Well former god, so Concert FM is okay but you don’t like other parts of the same deal? I find RNZ best for morning news, especially their specialist features, but tend to listen to Radio Live for some fun talkback and Radio Sport more in the weekend.
    What public radio does is provide some listening that would never pay for itself. I’m happy to contribute, just as I am contribute happily to lots of other beneficial things that I never use.

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  30. Brian Marshall (202 comments) says:

    Last week we had a shrilling woman harping on about Nationals hidden agenda to privitise ACC. Not once did the interviewer actually ask her if she had any evidence of that or anything else she said that the government wanted to do.

    I have a feeling she was interviewed by the “journalist” that is now or about yto start working for Labour. She went on and on and on and on. Not once was she asked, “do you have any proof of what you are accusing the government of doing?”.

    It’s been a very long time since RNZ has ever been balanced with anything to do with politics or economics.

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  31. the deity formerly known as nigel6888 (852 comments) says:

    No Mike, I dont approve of the state subsidising any form of media, but if they must, concert is largely harmless.

    National Radio however is a blight, it aggressively pursues a line that only the PPTA could support, and that is because only current and former teachers are their core audience. I too used to believe that morning report was worth it. I don’t miss it at all – go ahead try the alternative, you may be pleasantly surprised. I was.

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  32. Leaping Jimmy (16,447 comments) says:

    National Radio however is a blight, it aggressively pursues a line that only the PPTA could support, and that is because only current and former teachers are their core audience.

    and

    It’s been a very long time since RNZ has ever been balanced with anything to do with politics or economics.

    Newstalk is shit cos it interrupts its news every 5 minutes, literally, with long and I mean really long, ad breaks.

    Yes it is the best alternative cf to RadioNZ. And I agree RNZ is hugely leftist in its journalistic content. However, and this is a massive point in its favour, it does always, and I mean always, allow the other side in the equation to shine through. Normally. Almost every single topic it covers it will get the conservative perspective. It may not give it equal time, but I have been listening for over twenty years and I have very rarely heard issues covered where the conservative perspective is not given voice. It may not be given equal voice, but it is given voice. Possibly this only happens because RNZ editors know if they don’t, they’ll be fired. So they try to do the best for “the cause” by limiting it as much as they dare, without getting themselves fired. Who knows? One could reasonably conclude that, IMO. However fact is, they do do that, and they are, most critically, ad free.

    They also offer other channels I personally never listen to, like Concert, but which I’m happy to pay taxes for in the knowledge they give hundreds of thousands, who love them and who would miss them and who have no replacement thereof, years of pleasure, at a time in their life when those listeners need it, and deserve it.

    Sometimes not everything operated commercially should necessarily be a bus-i-ness, like Kohanga Reos and many charities and for what RNZ costs us, to me it’s representative of important human values which like kindness, are perhaps hard to justify on a balance sheet but which nevertheless, have significant value. I’d fight if people wanted to “disappear it.”

    That doesn’t mean I always agree with the way it treats its stories. In fact normally, I don’t.

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  33. PaulL (5,981 comments) says:

    Leaping Jimmy, mikenmild: so my problem is people that move the logic along from “I’m personally happy to pay for it” to “everyone else in NZ should to.” Presumably if enough people in NZ were happy to personally pay for it, then it wouldn’t need to be govt funded – all those people would just personally pay for it. Kind of like NPR in the US, which is largely donation funded. Would that be a bad model? It certainly would make it more clear who your audience was, and create a closer focus on giving the kind of services that many people in NZ would be happy to donate towards.

    Personally, I’d be inclined to donate if they did a decent job of balance. I like having insightful and analytical news, and good interviewers. I just believe that they’re getting away with producing shows that are only interesting to half the people who care about insightful and analytical news – because they always come at it from a left wing perspective. If they had to get donations, they’d probably want to increase that audience share a bit, and we’d all benefit from it (even the lefties would benefit from at least hearing the other side, even if they didn’t believe it. They’d then have a better knowledge base to argue against it from).

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  34. tom hunter (4,838 comments) says:

    If they had to get donations, they’d probably want to increase that audience share a bit,

    I can assure you that approach has not had that effect in the USA with NPR.

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  35. gump (1,647 comments) says:

    I like listening to Brian Crump in the evenings.

    But I’d like to see Morning Report direct a bit more skeptical questioning towards its guests. Kim Hill always used to be good at challenging bald statements and dodgy reasoning.

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  36. dave (988 comments) says:

    He also said his wife, who is the main income earner, would be on secondary tax. Really????? We don’t even know why ACC issued the decision – we can only assume he went to review if he was on Pullar’s info, as it was primarily on people who went to review.

    But we didn’t even know if he went to review because he didn’t say, and we don’t know whether his name was on Pullar’s info. Pathetic.

    The intro of the story was about ACC claimants who had unfair treatment or a privacy breach. We don’t know if he had a privacy breach and we don’t know if he had unfair treatment. So, I am going to apply to work for RNZ again. They`ll probably have spelling mistakes in the position description and reject me for pointing it out.

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  37. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    I’m not sure Radio NZ could survive on a commercial or a charity basis. I look on it as a relatively cheap service that serves a broad range of interests. Focusing on perceived political bias is the wrong approach (as in the Backbenchers thread as well).

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  38. tom hunter (4,838 comments) says:

    I almost missed another classic from the Doonesbury fan:

    … who else would play the Garrison Keillor Radio Show?

    Ah yes, twas long ago that I listened and chuckled along with those shows where all the women are strong and all the men are good looking, beside the shores of that imaginary lakeside town.

    Long, long ago.

    These days it’s apparent that Mr Keillor – underneath that puckish mask of whimsy – is a rather nasty liberal partisan, and probably always was. From his meltdown in Salon a decade ago against the GOP Senate election winner in Minnesota, to his strange bitching almost a decade later about all those lousy holiday songs by Jewish guys that trash up the malls every year, Rudolph and the chestnuts and the rest of that dreck. – it’s apparent that there’s something wrong upstairs.

    Then, in 2008, another bitchy Keillor article made some strange comments about New York, comparing an Amtrak station to the feeling of refugees squeezing onto the last train to Sweden out of Warsaw in 1939, and about the … bare shoulders of elegant young urban women whose shoulders tell you they never toted barges or lifted bales, never laid eyes on a barge or a bale . This riposte cracked me up:

    Lifting bales? You know who lifts bales these days? Fellow by the name of John Deere:

    But in the imaginary world inhabited by Keillor, who probably hasn’t lifted anything heavier than money in twenty years, Middle America is full of young ladies sporting Stallone shoulders because of all the time they spend throwing around bales.

    But for the purposes of this thread I think the next few comments should suffice in showing why he fits so well with Radio NZ:

    But this being Keillor, this column isn’t really about the implicit joys of hay-baling or how riding Amtrak is like fleeing the Holocaust, it’s about the decay of … “our sacred institutions!” Whenever one reads Garrison Keillor writing about our sacred, government-subsidized institutions, it bears keeping in mind the government-subsidized institution that made him a millionaire: “public” broadcasting.

    In spite of living a short distance from New York’s Central Park (you didn’t think he actually spends his time in those claustrophobic small towns he romanticizes, did you?) Keillor apparently missed the memo that the park has became a safe place to hang out …

    So the guy is merely another member of the 1% urban elite in New York. It really puts into perspective all his paens to small town America. And of course his analogy of Central Park is stretched across America, where those “sacred institutions” are getting trashed by you-know-who. As the critic of Keillor goes on to say:

    Imagine, if you can, the sort of mind it takes to believe that a successful, publicly subsidized entertainer, traveling between million-dollar homes, including a perch on the Upper West Side, free to move about, speak, publish, and criticize as he pleases, is the resident of a “prison state”? And that privatizing a government program (especially one that doesn’t work very well, cf. Amtrak, for Pete’s sake) constitutes a violation of the “sacred”?

    So a guy who wants to engage in promiscuous Nazi metaphors, compare those who disagree with him politically to murderers and rapists, and enrich himself while enjoying the largess of “public” broadcasting, ends, of course, with a call for civility. The word “keillor” should denote a unit of measure for hypocrisy.

    Like I said – perfect for Radio New Zealand and it’s cosy little audience.

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  39. tom hunter (4,838 comments) says:

    Like I said – perfect for Radio New Zealand and its cosy little audience.

    Hate edit function fails!

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  40. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Wow tom, a Garrison Keillor hater, who’s have thought? Boycotted the movie of Prairie Home Companion in case if offended your sensibilities too did you? I suspect his real crime in your eyes is to be a successful Democrat. If only he’d stayed in an authentic midwest town maybe he could have grown up to be a Republican, eh? Feel free to deconstruct one of his novels to show his true character for me.

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  41. tom hunter (4,838 comments) says:

    I think those articles he wrote deconstruct his public character to reveal the true one all by themselves. But you keep telling yourself he’s a decent human being and a nice guy.

    And as much as I love successful people – even Democrats – it would be nice if his success had not been built on the back of the taxpayer. A crony capitalist before the term became popular.

    By the way, trying to twist the frame of the debate around so that I’m a hater of someone who compares those who disagree with him politically to murderers and rapists, is quite laughable. I suspect that implies that you love someone who does that, as long as they’re left-wingers.

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  42. mpledger (425 comments) says:

    What the bet the man doesn’t even know he is elligible for WFF and his family doesn’t receive it.

    It would be interesting to see how many families are entitled to WFF and what proportion get it.

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  43. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Ha
    I’m sure you only read ideologically pure stuff. Cuts out so much. One shouldn’t read Dickens, I suppose – such a hypocrite; Tolstoy couldn’t get along with his wife; Evelyn Waugh – just plain nasty, etc, etc.

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