Why is a supposedly politically neutral government body promoting John Key and his government?

Issue 25 of the Greater Christchurch Recovery Update arrived in my mailbox yesterday and it will be useful if I run out of toilet paper.

I've commented on this glossy, full colour eight page broadsheet several times before. My main criticism of this publication. - other than it is numbingly boring - is that it is nothing more than a propaganda vehicle for the Key government's bureaucratic and dictatorial top down approach to the rebuild of Christchurch.

The whole publication, in the best tradition of Joe Stalin's Pravda, is written by faceless bureaucrats within the offices of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA). No independent views are allowed to get anywhere near this publication. No dissenting views are allow to upset the party line as laid down by Gerry Brownlee.

But CERA seems to have become an increasingly overtly pro-John Key organisation. As Rachel might tell us, it didn't happen overnight but it has happened.

This is the point that James Dann has made on his excellent Rebuilding Christchurch blog.

He has observed that CERA likes to tweet about John Key. Indeed on its Twitter feed there is a significant amount of John Key going down. Dann rightly comments:

CERA is a government department, and should remain apolitical. Posting National Party material through these channels crosses the line into political activism. Remember all those times when Brownlee has claimed that the opposition were “politicising” the earthquakes? Well, here he is, using a massive government department to do exactly that.

Dann also says that Johnny also features prominently on CERA's newly launched Facebook page as well.

Oh, and there's a nice full colour photo of smilin' John Key in the latest issue of the Greater Christchurch Recovery Update. The account of Key's day out in Kaiapoi last month is written in the kind of deferential manner usually reserved for royalty.



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