Thursday, March 13, 2008

Tummy bugs from the way gallery journalists frame the news

I've been in bed for too long with a wicked tummy bug but I did know about the news that a whole bunch of retiring MPs- and Peter Brown who probably won't be back in anyway - are going on an overseas junket instead of video conferencing, and I have just learned that the Government has announced its huge ($700 million) fund to promote innovation in the food and pastoral sector.

Guess what is bigger news? The junket, of course..

The NZ Herald said the Junket turns the stomach" It certainly turned mine - and the only trips I got out of it were regular trips to the loo. What the media didn't say was that David Benson-Pope - who is also retiring - isn`t going on the junket because he took on the party machine and lost.

Russell Brown queried why the junket is more newsworthy than a $700 million policy announcment, querying the way gallery journalists frame the news. He should know better. Of course the junket is more newsworthy - particularly when you get Marian Hobbs commenting: "I don't know too much about the purpose. I think it's about MMP. I'm not sure. I think it will be lovely."

Lovely for her. Bet you she was told to shut up after that. And she`s the new assistant speaker. If Russell was charged with writing both stories for a metropolitian daily, he`d expect that more readers would be interested in the junket - surely. Nobody likes their money being spent on MPs' irrelevant overseas trips - purely because these MPs are retiring. I hope the people they are meeting know that these MPs are not going to be in Parliament by year's end, that the people in South Africa are aware that Nandor smokes dope, Dover Samuels has incontinence problems; and Brian Connell has been suspended from caucus. It will break the ice when they meet.

I wonder if Marian Hobbs will get to meet officials from the Hungarian Communist party. I think it will be lovely if she did. She could talk about old times.




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