Red Alert

Radio rallies in two cities

Posted by on February 25th, 2010

Great turn-out today at the rallies in support of Radio NZ at Parliament and also in Christchurch.


Labour and Green MPs turned out to support the 200+ people who arrived with just a day or two’s notice to express opposition to Government efforts to freeze-cut  Radio NZ’s services.

Meanwhile I was addressing a smaller gathering outside Radio New Zealand House in my Christchurch electorate, saying  the Government should look across its broadcasting spend at what efficiencies that might be applied to support Radio New Zealand.

All up, the state has a net flow of than half a billion dollars into and out of broadcasting. Finding $1 million across that array of funding and revenue would be easier than finding similar savings from Radio NZ’s under-pressure $38m budget. And the difference that sort of money would make to Radio NZ would be considerable.

Today we also launched a website – Hands off Our Dial – – to provide an ongoing site for people to register their support for Radio NZ. It includes an e-petition to provide more signals to the Government that Radio NZ is a much-loved institution and cuts to services are not acceptable.


22 Responses to “Radio rallies in two cities”

  1. Charles says:

    Should we unfreeze tertiary education fees then?

  2. David says:

    Maybe cancelling the trip to Iran might save a few bucks. I am an avid listener and supporter of the commercial free RadioNZ but its a funding freeze not a cut and I expect them to be a bit smart about getting more for less, like the rest of us.

  3. Doug says:

    If that’s the crowd you could have held your gathering in a phone box.

  4. Georgia Boy says:

    Once again, we are borrowing $250MPW, where will the extra money come from? RNZ should get in the real world and stop bludging off the back of the dwindling tax payer.
    You guys are only moaning as it is a left wing biased radio network.

  5. paul says:

    @GB – “left wing biased radio network.”

    Really – how so?

  6. Spud says:

    “and I expect them to be a bit smart about getting more for less, like the rest of us.” – Yeah they could be like that guy in that ad and reuse tea bags. 😀

    “we are borrowing $250MPW, where will the extra money come from?” – Tip English upside down and I’m sure we’ll find the extra bucks. 😀

    Hi Paul 😀

  7. Tony Green says:

    !tea-bags? TEA-BAGS? that’d be luxury! -they took away the tea-bags in 2004

  8. TopCat says:

    If we’re borrowing $250 mill a week, why are we about to give tax cuts to $70K+ wage earners. The measly $4mill we’re trying to save (thats 1/60th of the weekly debt) hardly matters in that context.

  9. millsy says:

    We bloody need some form a quality intellegent radio in this country.

    And I dont class grown men who should know better talking about how Lady Gaga would look in a wet T-shirt as quality.

  10. Richard McGrath says:

    If National Radio is so good, why can’t its avid listeners support it through subscription – 100,000 regular paying listeners would only need to stump up 85 cents a day – excellent value for money! Those who never listen to NR for whatever reason would then be excused from having to fund it.

    Just because you like something doesn’t mean you should make the rest of us pay for it.

    And yes, as someone said earlier, there is a leftist state-worshipping undertone at NR, certainly evident when listening to Morning Report. I believe Geoff Robinson is a keen supporter of the PSA, and believes the state should have its sticky finger in every facet of human life.

  11. Brendon Burns says:

    TopCat is bang on, it is a matter of priorities. The Govt was happy to hand over one-third of last year’s tax cuts to the top 3% of earners; now it is lining the middle-low earners for higher GST so top earners can get another lick.
    And Richard, you are fixated on cost not value. Perhaps you’d also like the health service provided by subscription?
    As for Nat Radio all being lefties, try telling that to a Labour MP after we’ve had a grilling on Morning Report. The point is, it does that to everyone; there is no bow to ratings or advertisers. Radio NZ would not bowl the Prime Minister to put on a grovelling, groping ex-AB.

  12. bikerkiwi says:

    Since its a freeze and not a cut – are you saying that labour would INCREASE the funding to Radio NZ?

    If so – how much do you think would be appropriate?

  13. Richard McGrath says:

    Brendon: Yes I would like health service provided by subscription. In fact I already do that, via Southern Cross, and I would happily shift what I pay in tax toward public hospital treatment into the private sector. I’m sick of paying twice.

    I do however agree with you on GST. It hits poor people the hardest and should be axed altogether. Income tax cuts should start at the bottom with the reintroduction of a tax-free band (perhaps the first $20k of income for a start).

    I question the “value” of National Radio to a taxpayer who never listens to it (and the fairness of making him or her pay for it regardless).

  14. Georgia Boy says:

    Tax cuts are a macro economic issue and are essentially revenue neutral. Having a high tax reigime in NZ led to bigger govt over the past 5-7 years. Mis allocation of funds occurred, WFF, free student loans etc. Also, if people were hiding in trusts this should equalise things somewhat. Maybe the highly paid at RNZ can put their tax cuts into RNZ, Yeah Right.

    When you ask about who gets to pay for all of the borrowing all you lefties reply with is a potato.

    Meanwhile RNZ have to live in the current world where there ain’t the dough to go.

  15. bikerkiwi says:

    Just asking again as there was no reply:

    Since its a freeze and not a cut that you are protesting – are you saying that labour would INCREASE the funding to Radio NZ?

    A simply yes or no answer would be really nice?

  16. Spud says:

    Hi B ikerkiwi 😀

    Freeze is right, they’ve been left out in the cold :-(

  17. simon says:

    we seem to be contradicting ourselves people. top earners don’t earn with gst. only an economic idiot would think that. we are stuffing ourselves with such thoughts.

    if we seek to preserve RNZ then we stuff low and super. time to be honest. we can’t place bets both ways because of our legacy. our legacy may be wrong. indeed, it seems the public are saying our failed legacy is our anchor chain. to that end, if we want to preserve RNZ why are we campaigning for GST preservation but, not campaigning to erase the emissions scam?

    the fact is we positioned ETS. now it’s bust and utterly irrelevant (global cooling not warming). this stuffs everyone with 10% more taxes come july then GST on top. if we stuff everyone, then we can’t preserve RNZ even if we like or dislike it. the point being, we need to be honest, rethink what being for the people means don’t we. look forward with sincerity not backwards with hatred. fair point?

  18. Brendon Burns says:

    Richard, I hope I never need a coronary unit or cancer treatment but I’m glad my taxes provide those – and no amount of private medical insurance ever covers the cost of major trauma events – only the state can provide for that.
    Biker, Labour did give Radio NZ a $2.6m increases in our last budget. I am not proposing we tax more to give them more. Rather, the Govt should look across the $500m+ total it invests/receives from the entire broadcasting sector. Finding $1 or $2m there is going to be a lot easier than finding such savings in Radio NZ. For instance, I’d like to know (and have asked at select committee) what the state-owned transmission company Kordia spend on maintaining, perhaps even extending UHF coverage to tiny wee pockets of reception. If we are spending big money here, that’s worth looking at, especially when analogue signal switch-off is no more than 4 years away. Reapplying such funds to Radio NZ would make a helluva lot of difference.

  19. simon says:

    Brendon, sorry. you miss the point of why we are at odds with public need, at odds with basic economics, at odds with basic social concern.

    we need to strip out all pointless, ineffective goverment to give the economy a chance to nurture the fairness in what we profess. we’ve stuffed up mate. hugely, grossly and continuously.

    if we increase ANY part of government we DECREASE everyone’s well being. we can’t keep taking other people’s money to serve the cause the governments have no clue on how to deliver. we just need to look to the UK, America, most of Europe for examples of this. we need to extinguish our old flames that have failed us and move on. time to reflect. time to get on with newness. if national are turning like we are, lets turn in a new direction eh

  20. Sacha says:

    Oh Simon, you Actoids are just hilarious. Let me guess, the answer to any problem is “lower taxes”.

  21. simon says:

    sacha – there are people in life who are not able to see beyond the things they are not able to understand.

    can you please point me to 1 nation at any time in history that has ever prospered by punishing people. indeed, such beliefs contradict our mission statement. there is no hilarity in that.