Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search


Molesworth & Featherston (Weekend) – March 4th 200

Molesworth & Featherston - Weekend Update edition

Business and Political News
March 4th 2006

In the latest edition:

Direct Link To This Week's Weekend Update Edition:

Updated Report
The autumn of David Benson-Pope

The signs are that David Benson-Pope will hang on to his job. Helen Clark has not given any indication she will drop him. The week ends with the opposition having over-reached in parliament. First Rodney Hide announced he would go to the police. That will only shift the focus away from serious allegations of misleading the House, and back to the trivial substantive allegations. Then the opposition in the House called Mr Benson-Pope a ‘bully’, a ‘liar’ and a ‘pervert.’ Pervert? The expression demeans its user when it describes a genuine child molester like Graham Capill. It is ugly and wrong in this context.

But Labour has been leaden-footed in exploiting the opening the opposition left it. Its handling of the affair throughout has looked careless and slow.

With Helen Clark’s media chief taking control, Mr Benson- Pope finally fronted on Thursday and all media were at last given interviews. The mixture of apologies, explanations and stories about the effects on his family are designed to humanise him.

The government seemed distracted when the stories first broke. Comments defending Mr Benson-Pope mostly carry an out-clause. There was an air of backsides being covered justin- case Plan A fails. Helen Clark appears to have adopted the Bolger strategy she privately ridiculed in Opposition: toughing out the attacks. Maybe now she has been through the wringer herself a couple of times she has more sympathy for besieged ministers. Or maybe she feels vulnerable about appearing to hold others to a higher standard than she held herself. So for now the PM and senior ministers are backing B-P, saying he is an honest man and the allegations do not warrant the removal of his warrant.

The questions may continue next week, but the opposition, which showed almost unprecedented focus and teeth early in the story's life, will need to handle itself better next week as well. If it does, then we know the pattern -- sometime soon the PM will try to take back control of the story. Media will be quietly told she has decided to act and shortly afterward the minister will be informed.

Direct Link To This Week's Weekend Update Edition:


The Weekend Update is a complimentary, condensed edition of the paid-subscription only Governor’s Edition published last Tuesday.

For the inside oil on politics and business in Wellington - and to subscribe to the Governor's edition see… Pay for a Governor's Editions subscription HERE

Direct Link To This Week's Weekend Update Edition:

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news