Saturday, February 2, 2013

More than meets the eye

The Herald had a story this morning alleging a conflict of interest by Justice Minister Judith Collins. But as Truth reports, there might be more to this story than meets the eye, and more than David Fisher discloses; check this out:

The NZ Herald this morning launched an attack on Justice Minister Judith Collins and her husband David Wong-Tung using a photo taken at the funeral of Wong-Tung’s mother.
The story makes allegations that Collins appointed Robert Kee to the Human Rights Commission mainly because Collins’ husband once worked in the same multi-story office building as Kee and Collins also worked on another floor below. It is also alleged that sometime in the 90s they all had drinks together at DeBrett’s bar in the hub of the legal district, where presumably many, many other lawyers also drank.
The reporter who wrote the article, David Fisher, described the article on social media platform Twitter as “how a real newspaper works”.
TRUTH spoke with Collins about the allegations and can reveal that the photograph used, which the NZ Herald labelled as ‘supplied’, did not come from family sources.
They did say however that they are disappointed that the photographer they had hired for the private function had chosen to give the photo to the Herald without permission, especially considering he was paid for the job.
“It is essentially stolen from the family, and shows private moments of grief amongst family members, including my son” said Collins.
The photographer, Clinton Bowerman is no stranger to controversy. He is a well known conspiracy theorist and was once busted spying on the home of Auckland’s Hobson Community Board chair Desley Simpson. He is also subject to other media speculation, also reported in the Herald, about involvement in conspiring to break into National party president Peter Goodfellow’s parents’ apartment on Tamaki Drive and of being involved in a plot to steal two dogs.
It is perhaps surprising that a publication of the repute of The NZ Herald would resort to using photographs of uncertain ownership and veracity supplied by a person alleged to have been involved in criminal activities such as dog-napping and breaking and entering.
Collins says she “is very disappointed that personal family moments have been used to score a shabby political point in a story of no merit”.
TRUTH asks is this really ”how a real newspaper works”.

The question posed by Truth at the foot of its story is a most interesting one. David Fisher no longer seems to be leading the Herald's defence of Kim Dotcom. Perhaps there was a conflict of interest there, as well. We wonder what those who made the New Zealand Herald into the country's greatest newspaper in years past would think of Mr Fisher's methods in compiling this "scoop".

And the motives of Mr Bowerman are very much open to question. We wonder what photography jobs he has coming up, and whether any of those who have paid services in the past will be anxious about photographs suddenly appearing in the public domain without their consent or authority.


Robert Winter said...

Nice try at diverting attention from the substantive issue!

Keeping Stock said...

"Substantive" Robert? That's a stretch, even by your lot's standards.

Robert Winter said...

Pork is pork, whatever the party in power. And quoting anything by Mr Slater in relation to Ms Collins is something to be considered carefully!

Keeping Stock said...

On the pork scale Robert (where pork loin sits at the top), this allegation would rate somewhere between luncheon sausage and cheese Sizzlers.

But given all the debacles that the Govt. has had of late, can you blame Collins for wanting someone she trusts in a particular role?

Edward the Confessor said...

Classic shoot the messenger stuff - the sort of thing you're always accusing others of - and here you are lapping it up. Hypocrite much?

"...can you blame Collins for wanting someone she trusts in a particular role?"

You mean appointing a lackey who will do her will to an "independant" statutory body? Interesting that you would think that's appropriate.

Alex Coleman said...

But given all the debacles that the Govt. has had of late, can you blame Collins for wanting someone she trusts in a particular role?

I agree they're not short of debacles at the moment, but if you want to avoid them this is a stupid way of going about it.

When journos start asking about the extent of a relationship, you should probably not make it out to be way less than it is. The reason they are asking is that they have a pretty good idea. She fobbed them off and got busted.

Whale wading in was predictable, and his piece is laughable. "Stolen"? Please.

Most photographers own the rights to every photo they take; it should be assumed to be that way unless you agree otherwise prior to hiring them.

And it's hilarious the way he protrays the guy as being some sort of weirdo crank. that may well be true, but it's also true he plays around in Auckland National party circles. Maybe they should be more picky about their friends.

But all up, Collins should just be more straight up with people so as not to give them reason to think she doesn't want people to know about something.

pdm said...

Then again he may just be the best person for the job.

Anonymous said...

I do not regard Judith Collins as a nice person but I regard her as an able person, with judgment, integrity, measure and stability. If her judgment is to be impinged by journalists then perhaps facts ought to be applied?


Palmerston North said...

Let's see how Judith Collins handles this very serious judicial fraud case.