|"Read Whaleoil this morning?"|
RARELY DO TVNZ's presenters venture from their Auckland bunker to visit the yokels out in the sticks. This week though the Breakfast duo of Rawdon Christie and Ali Pugh have been in Christchurch.
What has lured them away from the comfort of the couch in the Auckland studio has been Canterbury Show Week and the NZ Trotting Cup. Since Tuesday they have been broadcasting from Addington Raceway.
It seems that the attraction of having 'a flutter at the races, or getting up close to a newborn lamb at the show' has been more than enough for TVNZ to send its intrepid duo south. Nothing else has been able to get them down here.
The fact that there are some 7000 homeless people in the city has never been of interest to Breakfast. Perhaps Rawdon and Ali think 'downbeat' stories about poverty and homelessness would clash with the tasteful decor of the studio.
The fact that people are living in abandoned quake damaged homes has not inspired Ali and Rawdon to venture from the horses and the champagne at Addington Raceway to report on what is really going on behind the shiny facade of Show Week.
You think they might of used their Christchurch visit to poke a camera or two into the squalor and overcrowded conditions that many people, through no fault of their own, having been enduring ever since the big quake three years ago. You might reasonably think that but we're talking Breakfast here, a show that has been exposed as using the National Party attack blog Whaleoil as a source of 'news'.
Yesterday Trade Me released information that shows the average weekly rent in the city has climbed by 20 percent in the last year to a new record high of $510 per week, up from $425 a year ago. The nationwide increase was six percent.
For people who have been plunged into poverty by the greed of the vampires this will not be news.
But it has not been newsworthy enough for Breakfast to report on it. Perhaps they could of asked Christchurch Central MP Nicky Wagner to comment. In September Wagner, a major property owner herself, claimed that there were only thirty homeless people in the city.
Or perhaps Christie and Pugh could of talked with Nigel Jefferies of Trade Me who has stated that price gouging by Christchurch landlords seems to be commonplace. Instead Ali Pugh decided to talk with a policeman about 'the increase in crime' during Show Week. She was not though referring to landlords demanding extortionate rents. A kid nicking sweets from the corner shop pales in comparison to the economic crimes of landlords.
Once again TVNZ has displayed how its 'news coverage' dovetails nicely with the interests of the National government and the politics of the free market. With Seven Sharp having degenerated into Mike Hosking's love affair with John Key, TVNZ now only provides news and commentary that the economic and political elite are comfortable with.