Petra Bagust and Brian Tamaki want to 'save' the New Zealand mainstream media!
There are of course, many tormented souls in the media and nobody is helping them! Never fear - it's the National Media Prayer Day to the rescue!
Yes, this Sunday (August 5) various churches will be praying for the souls of tormented journalists, broadcasters, editors bloggers, etc throughout the country. Over 1000 churches are apparently participating in this exercise - the purpose of which is 'to spread the Gospel throughout New Zealand's mass media.'
The impetus has come from the conservative Christian Broadcasting Association (the organisation that runs Shine Television) ) which originally held a day of prayer for the work of the CBA . Shine TV is, of course, the channel that regularly broadcasts anti-abortion, anti-gay and anti-left programmes - many of them imported from right wing evangelical organisations in the United States and which have close links to the Republican Party.
Shine is also not that keen about evolution and also broadcasts shows that denounce such 'nonsense'. For sheer stupidity, these shows have to be seen to be believed.
Shine has been running commercials for the Media Prayer Day.
Among the supporters of the Media Prayer Day are the Christian Brethren, high profile supporters of the National Party and furtive distributors of anti-Green Party leaflets. Another high profile supporter is the not-very-liberal 'Bishop' Brian Tamaki of the Destiny Church.
Also lending their support to the prayer day are broadcasters Simon Barnett and Petra Bagust. Both feature in the television commercial.
Barnett is a breakfast DJ at More FM in Christchurch and the host of such top notch television shows as Stars in Their Eyes and Face The Music. I 'd probably be praying for salvation if I'd been forced to watch these shows.
Barnett was an active and strident opponent of Sue Bradford's 'anti-smacking' bill.
Petra Bagust is presently co-hosting the floundering Breakfast show on TVNZ. and pulling in a salary of reportedly over $400,000.
There is a whole lot wrong with the mainstream media in New Zealand. That includes the absence of a non-commercial public broadcaster. It also includes the continued 'tabloidisation' of the commercial media and its increasingly reactionary views. It also includes the failure of both National and Labour Government's to address the question of the media being owned by a handful of foreign multinationals.
But the National Day of Prayer isn't about any of these things. Its a condescending and asinine campaign that wants people in the media to support fundamentally conservative religious beliefs that not only fail to address the unjust media power structures in New Zealand but actually defend them.