Well meaning but totally inappropriate

The Herald reports:

Supporters of embattled financier are fighting to help clear his name and have kicked off with an advertising campaign. …

Half-page advertisements rallying support for the 82-year-old Timaru businessman will appear in the country’s three biggest newspapers over the next two days. The first appeared today in The Press newspaper.

“Allan Hubbard has helped many people and organisations over the last 50 plus years. He has donated some $200 Million over the last 15 years alone.

It is now our turn to help Allan and his wife Jean,” the advertisement reads.

The ad calls on people to email Prime Minister John Key or Commerce Minister Simon Power telling them what the Hubbards have done for them or to record their story on the Facebook fan page “Help Allan Hubbard”.

“Mr Hubbard has a long and solid reputation of meeting all his commitments and the officials in Government need to be made aware of the contribution the Hubbard’s have made to NZ organisations and citizens,” the advertisement says.

This is just an incredibly bad idea. One doesn’t decide criminal investigations on the basis of letter writing campaigns.

Like most NZers I have a very favourable view of the Hubbards. I hope they have done nothing wrong, no laws have been broken, and the statutory management regime proves unnecessary and is removed.

But I don’t know what happened, and neither do these people placing the advertisements. They have absolutely no ideas why the SFO is investigating the Hubbards.

Loyalty is one thing, and admirable. But blind loyalty is another thing. To launch a campaign to get the Government to stop action against an individual, when you do not even know what the details are, is irresponsible.

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