Apparently my comment about Paul Holmes have ruffled some middle class feathers over at the Kiwi Journalist Facebook page...
For his services to middle class racism - arise Sir Paul Holmes - one very short knight after decades of cheeky darkies
Former Herald editor and Auckland University lecturer Gavin Ellis was not amused...
Unbecoming, Bomber. Just for a moment imagine yourself in his precarious health position and ask yourself how you would react to such bitterness if it were directed at you.
...the veritable Jim Tucker tsk tsked my churlishness while Fran O'Sullivan heaped gravy bowls full of platitudes upon the little Knight for his services to broadcasting.
Even the godfather of the left, Brian Edwards claimed to have been disgusted by my remark and his comment section was abuzz with my inhumanity.
How precious of everyone.
I don't wish ill upon a dying man. His passing, whenever it occurs will be deeply felt by his whanau, his friends and the wider NZ community, but I for one simply can't go along with the ridiculous narrative that underpins most of this posturing.
Yes Paul Holmes was a large fish in a tiny pond and he is friends with much of the established media, but that can't inoculate him from criticism or a far more sober review of his legacy.
Paul Holmes may have been funny and talented and a clever broadcaster, but for a man with so much ability and so much influence, what did he do for NZ?
His race baiting set the standard for everyone else, he legitimized and justified a garden variety bigotry as a broadcaster. From his cheeky darkie comment, to his bewildering planting of a tree on One Tree Hill despite the cultural sensitivities to his openly racist Waitangi Day column, Paul Holmes didn't challenge the ignorance of his audience, he feed it...
Waitangi Day produced its usual hatred, rudeness, and violence against a clearly elected Prime Minister from a group of hateful, hate-fuelled weirdos who seem to exist in a perfect world of benefit provision. This enables them to blissfully continue to believe that New Zealand is the centre of the world, no one has to have a job and the Treaty is all that matters.
I'm over Waitangi Day. It is repugnant. It's a ghastly affair. As I lie in bed on Waitangi morning, I know that later that evening, the news will show us irrational Maori ghastliness with spitting, smugness, self-righteousness and the usual neurotic Maori politics, in which some bizarre new wrong we've never thought about will be lying on the table.
This, we will have to address and somehow apply these never-defined principles of the Treaty of Waitangi because it is, apparently, the next big resentment. There'll be lengthy discussion, we'll end up paying the usual millions into the hands of the Maori aristocracy and God knows where it'll go from there.
Well, it's a bullshit day, Waitangi. It's a day of lies. It is loony Maori fringe self-denial day. It's a day when everything is addressed, except the real stuff.
Never mind the child stats, never mind the national truancy stats, never mind the hopeless failure of Maori to educate their children and stop them bashing their babies. No, it's all the Pakeha's fault. It's all about hating whitey. Believe me, that's what it looked like the other day.
...his willful ignorance after being a broadcaster in this country for the period of time he has is not acceptable. It's beneath an educated person.
And this, this is simply vile...
No, if Maori want Waitangi Day for themselves, let them have it. Let them go and raid a bit more kai moana than they need for the big, and feed themselves silly, speak of the injustices heaped upon them by the greedy Pakeha and work out new ways of bamboozling the Pakeha to come up with a few more millions.
...now I accept that this may have been another editorial failure of the NZ Herald akin to Garth George's terrible column on global warming and John Armstrong's misjudged attack on bloggers, but the fact remains that Paul didn't slaughter sacred cows, he milked them.
I remember watching my very first Holmes program. It was exhilarating. Dennis Conner had been so rude and mean spirited when he had drunkenly abused our America's Cup team. Paul asking him repeatedly if he would apologize until he walked off stage in a tantrum was the first time I ever felt the media was on my side. Holmes had so much talent, it makes his later descent into needless race baiting all the more sad.
Many will trumpet and salute his eventual passing. I won't. Sure, I'll give him a thumbs up when the hearse drives by, but a broadcaster as talented as he was should have done so much more for our cultural narrative rather than reinforcing prejudice.
He was good, but he could have been great.