Home > Uncategorized > That Evening Clinic of Referred Pain

That Evening Clinic of Referred Pain

December 11, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

These days, I avoid nightly news broadcasts because, as a rule, I find them infuriatingly vapid and inflammatory. (The title of this post comes from Ian McEwan’s  Enduring Love).

There is something about TV network news in New Zealand that I find especially irksome, almost unwatchable. TVNZ and TV3 news seem to simultaneously reflect and feed New Zealand’s mood of unrelenting moral panic. But is this true, or do I react so strongly to the awfulness of TV news in NZ because I have a more visceral relationship to my home country in the first place?

In order to find out, I liveblogged the TV3 News tonight to try and capture the flavour and find the source of may abiding distaste.  Here is five minutes’ worth:

  • A police officer is victim to a frenzied machete attack by 14 and 18 year old alleged offenders: Police Association leverages the story to advocate for arming police; the deeply reactionary Police Minister leverages it for general political advantage.
  • Pike River mine redundancy speculation: Mine CRO Peter Whittall continues to bask in adoring and blameless glow; Andrew Little, the union boss and upcoming Labour pollie, tries in vain to generate an aura of his own; Greymouth’s superb Mayor directs questions at Government, who remain silent.
  • Continuing hysterical coverage of Prince Charles and his step-mother Camilla getting hassled by subjects; Camilla looks terrified apparently but I can’t tell the difference.
  • Drink-driver smashes into bus, car gets ripped in two, vows never to drink and drive again: the reporter looks 15 which explains the quality of journalism; embarrassed but opportunistic driver lectures New Zealanders with road safety cliches in canny bid to avert jail time.
  • Anti-whalers arrive in Wellington, but technical problem intervenes and rescues me from having to hear about them.
  • PR puff story about campaign to bolster restaurant industry in quake-affected Christchurch: a Restaurant Association rep quotes from the media release, aided by hand-picked local talent who adds sound-bite.

Nothing about the P epidemic thus far, and John Kirwan has said nothing about depression as yet….

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. markus
    December 12, 2010 at 02:24

    Spot on.

    Mind you, what can we expect after a good 20 years of relentless dumbing-down. Very rarely watch TVNZ / TV3 news these days. I just know I’m gonna be irritated the moment I switch.

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