Brian Edwards Media

Bomber Bradbury – a gutless reaction by Radio New Zealand that smacks of political hypersensitivity.

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I’ve only just caught up with the transcript of what it was that Martyn ‘Bomber’ Bradbury said on National Radio’s Afternoons programme that got him banned from the programme. Here’s the text of the offending passage:

“What does a $43 million loan to Mediaworks buy you on Radio Live – apparently an hour of John Key avoiding answering any questions on politics. Why pay Mediaworks $43 million for that, when John Key can appear on Close Up and not answer questions for free.

…“Radio Live didn’t offer any other political leader an hour of free talkback and went on to claim that allowing the Prime Minister to host an hour of radio minus any hard questions at all about his policy isn’t political. Which is kinda like arguing that allowing George W Bush to write editorials in the New York Times about his favorite cake recipe during the invasion of Iraq isn’t ‘political’.

“Radio Live say it’s because of electoral law that John Key couldn’t answer questions on politics. Really? Put Key in there for an hour with an interviewer and ask him questions, that would have side stepped those issues, but to give him an hour where he gets to hide behind a ‘no politics’ zone on the very day our credit was downgraded is simply disgraceful!

… “And John Key’s attempt yesterday to blame the Labour Party for a man’s attempted self harm in Parliament is a new low, even for Parliament.

“Yelling, “It’s your fault, it’s your fault” while making a throat slashing gesture at Phil Goff (as a man with mental health issues dangled from Parliaments balcony) is the sort of ravings one expects from a meth addict on a bender, not the political leader of a country.

“Topping this nonsense off is Key’s excuse that he was actually talking about Labour’s criticism of his over spending on the Diplomatic Protection service?

“What could justify making a throat slashing gesture at Phil Goff for an event that had all the implications of an attempted suicide if the guy had actually fallen? What a lovely little piece of work our Prime Minister is when he is caught off guard.”


I know a bit about Afternoons. I’m a regular on ‘The Panel’, usually with my good friend and mortal political enemy, Michelle Boag. We were in fact the very first Panel when the show started in September 2005. 

 When you’re on the show, you get an email from the producer around midday with the topics that are going to be discussed. You’re also asked what you’ve been up to since you were last on and to nominate a topic you’d like to talk about on ‘Panel Says’. So the producer and host Jim Mora are forewarned of the issue you’re going to talk about, though not of course of the actual words you’re going to say. It’s live radio after all. And if Michelle and I are on, the producer and host must know that the likelihood of Michelle praising Phil Goff or of me praising John Key is small to say the least. The fact of the matter is that that’s a primary reason why we’re there and we’ve both said some pretty trenchant things about our particular political anti-heroes. I’ve never been asked to rein in my comments and neither has Michelle.

 I’m saddened by Radio New Zealand’s banning of Bomber Bradbury for several  reasons:

For anyone who believes in non-commercial public service broadcasting, Radio New Zealand is pretty well all there is and it’s bloody good. Aside from TVNZ’s Q and A and TV3’s The Nation, both marginalized in what for most people are unwatchable time slots, Maori Television’s Native Affairs and TVNZ7, about to be sacrificed to the Government’s total lack of interest in quality radio or television, there is no discursive examination of politics and current issues on radio or television in this country. National Radio is the glorious exception with Morning Report, Midday Report, Nine to Noon, Checkpoint and a swag of other programmes, willing to take the time to examine issues in detail and depth.

I’ve always thought of National Radio as courageous in its approach to tackling political issues and forward thinking in its approach to broadcasting standards. There’s a list of words you’re not supposed to say on air, but I don’t object to that. I don’t regard not being able to say ‘Fuck’ on the radio as an affront to my right to freedom of speech. I don’t need it to make my point.

But, as an invited political commentator on public radio, being able to express my disapproval of the actions of political parties or politicians in the strongest terms, short of defamation, is an absolute sine qua non. I don’t want to have to pussyfoot around. And, to be frank, I don’t want to give up several hours of my time preparing for and appearing on a network or programme that expects me to pussyfoot around.

And if you’re the Prime Minister or the Leader of the Opposition, exercising considerable power and enjoying considerable privilege, you’re expected to have a considerably thicker skin than the average person. You hand it out often enough; you’d better be able to take it.

I’m saddened too because Afternoons is a really good programme with an intelligent and talented host, a stable of informed and entertaining panellists and access to a seemingly limitless store of experts on every topic under the sun. In all of that it’s a rare gem. And, in the interests not only of broadcasting but of a healthy democracy, it needs to be given its head.

As for Bomber Bradbury, I don’t need to praise him. But I will say that he’s a superb broadcaster. He’s also a man of strong convictions. And those convictions are well known to Radio New Zealand. That’s the irony here – the very reason they want him on Afternoons, is the same reason why they don’t want him now.  

I probably wouldn’t have expressed myself in quite the way Bomber did. Maybe I don’t have quite his righteous anger. But I also know that he was absolutely right about both Radio Live’s extraordinary gift of an hour’s free promotion to the Prime Minister and about John Key’s response to the events in Parliament’s public gallery. He felt strongly about it and he expressed himself strongly. I’m sure the Prime Minister could have dealt with it.

This was a gutless decision by Radio New Zealand, an unnecessary over-reaction and a real bad look. It reminds me a little of my glory days as a current affairs interviewer on Gallery in 1969-70. I quickly came to the conclusion then that it really wasn’t necessary for Keith Holyoake or his Ministers to bully or try to censor the NZBC, the Corporation was so nervous about offending the government that it was self-censoring. I thought those days were past. Maybe I was wrong.

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47 Comments:

  1. The real problem with The Panel is the nature of the guests–people who already have ready access (too much access in some cases) to the public discourse. You know what they are going to say in most cases and it is often ill-informed opinion. It needs re-jigging, to allow for more diverse (and younger) voices. A good start would be to get rid of Matthew Hooten, who is often just as strident as Bomber was.

  2. Whole heartedly agree with you here. At what stage did NZ become a dictatorship? Freedom of speech is to be celebrated. Just because someone states an opinion that you object too or in this case points out the unguarded and revelatory actions of a political leader, calling it as he sees it; doesn’t mean that he should be censured in this way.

    Radio NZ has gone to far this time, perhaps at the request of those who hold the cheque book.

  3. When you are as cash strapped as RNZ and dependent on the largesse of a National Government it is not surprising that Bradbury was blacklisted. I see from other blogs and listening to media watch it was dressed up in terms of breach of standards, talking over the host, reading his blog, etc, but it is a sad day for the independence of RNZ.

  4. Native Affairs is also a worthy broadcaster, tackling an excellent range of political issues, that perhaps could have been included in your list.

    So do you think National Radio’s ultimate cheque signer’s reach is such that he can request for the banning of commentators that cross a line drawn by he? Is the funding of National Radio that precarious?

    BE: You’re quite right about Maori Television and Native Affairs. I’ve praised them in the past and this was a serious omission which I’ve now rectified.

  5. I missed the show and wondered what he said that was so objectionable.

    I am left with the question unanswered after reading the transcript – Bradbury’s comments seem entirely predictable given his politics (which, as you say, are the reason he is on the programme.

    I listen to the programme BECAUSE there are likely to be strong opinions voiced and views from across the political spectrum.

    ‘Bad look’ – yes. Sad also.

  6. Great, balanced, sensible repsonse. I appreciate that you have addressed the issue more than the personality. Bomber often rejigs his blog ideas on the panel and, much like the panelist who always gushes about her dogs, his topic choice and perspecive is usually predictable. Radio National, and their listeners surely know this.

  7. Actually, Geoff, whilst I disagree with Hooten – it’s worthwhile listening to his perceptions of politics.

    Just sometimes, they let things slip – such as a reference he made very briefly about polling in Epsom. The subtext of his comment being that National’s poll-rating is not as good as the commercial pollsters make out.

    Ben, I listened to ‘Bomber’ that afternoon – he was no different to his usual style. He did, however, make a hard criticism about John Key’s behaviour in the House.

    Perhaps ‘Bomber’ is voicing the exasperations of large segments of the public who are frustrated at the media’s uncritical reporting of our current PM.

    I don’t believe ‘Bomber’ was in breach of any RNZ standards. This is evidenced by the fact that RNZ have not disclosed WHAT standards ‘Bomber’ breached.

  8. 8

    By Jingo Chomdonkley

    This hypersensitivity is historic. It usually gets out of hand around election time. RNZ get caught in the political crossfire and have developed a kind of election time shell-shock and nerves. One election they perminently ditched the long running opinion piece “Sunday Supplement” and it was never to be seen again. Another symptom is this fetish with “balance” which is not needed when you have clearly verified facts. No doubt it is difficult tight-rope walk, but self censorship is possibly the worst kind.

  9. Brian, this whole thing is unbelievable really. It just seems to be so blatent, and despite some commenters, such as yourself, speaking out I suspect it will just fade away shortly; as if it never happened. I so wish more people would speak out and make a bit more of a fuss about it really – democracy is crumbling while a good part of society is either too busy or exhausted to notice. Any chance of you refusing to go on the show and taking a stand on this?

  10. “He’s also a man of strong convictions. And those convictions are well known to Radio New Zealand. That’s the irony here – the very reason they want him on Afternoons, is the same reason why they don’t want him now.”

    That paragraph says it all, Brian. Bomber Bradbury is a strident, opinionated and, above all, entertaining voice in the mass of media mediocrity.

    I heard his rant – I use the word “rant” advisedly – and thought it well over the top, thouigh certainly not defamatory. But that’s not the point. The point is that he is a regular guest because of his skill as an opinionated, outraged and outrageous performer.

    The reason Mr Bradbury was regularly chosen is precisely the reason you and Michelle Boag are usually paired together – the producers, like all current affairs producers, hope you and Michelle will spark off each other to provide entertaining radio. Your cut-and-thrust might be urbane and Mr Bradbury more like a Sherman tank but the principal remains the same.

    We veterans of public radio and TV know that their history is littered with silly decisions made by fearful men (and they almost always are men). But I doubt there’s a pro-government conspiracy here. I think you will agree that innate timidity and a strong sense of deference is a prerequisite for corporate advancement in this area.

    xxxxx principle remains the same (it’s past my bedtime!)

  11. He is not band from the station but only from that show. http://podcast.radionz.co.nz/ntn/ntn-20111011-1148-media_commentator_gavin_ellis-048.mp3

  12. I heard it live and thought it was a bit overdone but didn’t realise that he’s no longer allowed back on the panel. Bit of an overkill.
    I guess the only thing was it did sound like a political rant – his volume went up and I don’t think he took a breath but then that’s the fun of the panel.
    Boo RNZ

  13. I’m happy enough to be told I’m wrong – but as I understand it, Mediaworks were given a stay of execution on stumping up those $ for broadcast licences for the next 20 years – after Ironbridge, the owners suddenly sucked cash from the org’ during the GEC. It’s not a “Loan” – it’s not paying “… Mediaworks $43 million” as Bomber thingy said – so he’s really twisting that particular knife to push his own politics. Nothing new there it’d seem.
    I spent decades in the commercial radio industry and RNZ’s reaction to this storm in an A cup is as predictable as if it were still 1959. All very liberal these days though of course – until a feather gets ruffled, then it’s pass the blame game time. Have to say, as a guest on that programme, the downtrodden and impoverished lefty guy was overbearing and so predictable they’d be better off without him anyhow – next…

  14. The guests are all predictable Ross, given they nearly all represent the same cohort.Namely baby boomers.
    Imagine if the guests reflected the makeup of the country…nearly a third of which is Polynesian ( including Maori) and Asian,and half of which is aged under 35.
    Wouldn’t it be less predictable if we heard how folk from that cohort see the issues that we all face and hear some of their ideas and solutions.
    For example, the recent employment /tattoo issue that was raised and not discussed with anyone who it affected. Or the fiscal ‘problems’ that apparently beset the country and can only be resolved by putting interest on student loans and diminishing working for families. No mention of raising the retirement age, means testing superannuation or rebating it should there be other sources of income.
    It’s all been pretty predictable and it’s even moreso now.

  15. to really understand this you have to have heard it live. I listened in growing amazement an d then embarrassment FOR HIM. How can a man be so lacking in judgement about how to conduct himself in public. You see it wasn’t really what he sais, it was how he said it. It was truly excruciating and when he stopped the silence from Jim and the other panelist said it all. Ifor one will be glad not to have to hear him again.

    BE: You may well be right. Others have said much the same thing. The way to handle it was to give him a warning not to ban him instantly from the show. Next time he did it, you’d be on stronger ground.

  16. I agree with Peter Martin. Some diversity would add a great deal of richness to The Panel. I tire of the usual middle class, white, baby boomer line-up we are presented with. Part of the loss here is that Bomber was (as far as I know) one of the few panelists who isn’t a baby boomer.

    BE: “the usual middle class, white, baby boomer line-up” A few undesirable ‘isms’ in there, Paul.

  17. As a regular listener to the Panel, I am pleased to see him go. His inflamatory rants typically stretch beyond hyperbole to hysteria. He is persistently rude to the affable and mild mannered host. In fact I suspect that is the real problem. Not letting Jim get a word in is completely out of step with the character of the show. People portraying this as National Radio shutting down criticism of the government have got to be joking. Do they ever listen to National Radio ?

    By all means let’s have robust debate. But let’s have people who can behave in a reasonable and adult fashion. People who at least acknowledge there are two sides to every story. I don’t want a lunatic with a megaphone invading the quiet of my study.

    BTW Geoff Lealand, does Matthew Hooten (incidentally a man who unlike Bomber is mild mannered, reasonable, and happy to give credit to his opponents when deserved) even appear on the Panel ?

    BE: “BTW Geoff Lealand, does Matthew Hooten (incidentally a man who unlike Bomber is mild mannered, reasonable, and happy to give credit to his opponents when deserved) even appear on the Panel ?”

    Matthew Hooten has given an explanation for this is a comment.

  18. I have been an avid RNZ listener in the past, but have now come to the conclusion that the National Party has it by the throat. We have seen the tactic so often pending a privatization. Deprive the organization of cash and force a lowering of standards and the public will cease their support. Unfortunately it seems to work.

    BE: Having got stuck into another of your comments, I think you may have this dead right.

    I’m going to say something now that I haven’t said before. It has always been a mystery why my programme Top of the Morning, then one of the highest if not the highest rating radio programme in the country, was suddenly ditched by Radio New Zealand. None of the reasons that were given to me or my producer Catherine Saunders by Sharon Crosby made any sense. But I suspect Sharon was merely the messenger for the Board. Helen Clark had just become Prime Minister and Judy Callingham and I had been Helen’s media advisors since 1996 and would continue to be her advisors for another nine years. That would have been grounds for getting rid of me if Top of the Morning had contained any political or current affairs content. It had none. In the five years it was on air, the only politician I can recall interviewing was Jenny Shipley. And that, like almost all the interviews on the programme was personality based. Nor, in those five years, was any complaint of political bias on the programme upheld by the BSA. I’m reasonably certain that none was ever made.

    I’m not suggesting political bias on the part of the Board of Radio New Zealand at that time. I am suggesting that the Board anticipated trouble from the Right and was too lily-livered to take the risk that it might have to defend one of its most successful broadcasters. Radio and television boards tend to be like that. There are numerous examples just here in New Zealand. Willingness to stand up for your on-air talent is not a job requirement. And I repeat what I said in the post:

    “This was a gutless decision by Radio New Zealand, an unnecessary over-reaction and a real bad look. It reminds me a little of my glory days as a current affairs interviewer on Gallery in 1969-70. I quickly came to the conclusion then that it really wasn’t necessary for Keith Holyoake or his Ministers to bully or try to censor the NZBC, the Corporation was so nervous about offending the government that it was self-censoring.”

    I should add that the censoring process worked from the bottom up not from the top down. Nervousness may be a more dangerous quality than recklessness in those with power and position in broadcasting. Is it likely that Radio New Zealand is fearful of offending the Government or the Prime Minister? Absolutely.

    That said, were the producers of Afternoons entitled to tell Bomber Bradbury that either what he’d said or the way he’d said it was unacceptable and he’d better pull his head in? Absolutely. He could then decide whether he wanted to be on the programme again; and if he did and he repeated the offence as they saw it, they would have been perfectly entitled to say Bye Bye. Shooting first just led to a lot of really uncomfortable questions being asked afterwards. Not the desired outcome.

  19. Bill: Matthew Hooten probably doesn’t but he does have regular opprtunities to air his views on Nine To Noon (in that rather silly Politics from the Left and Right). Personally, I think we need less of the mild mannered stuff on NatRad (which usually synoymous with the non-controversial, middle-brow and staid) and more inflammed (but informed) opinion. We certainly need some younger voices!

  20. Martyn ‘Bombastic’ Bradbury has no one to blame but himself. Too one-eyed to be ever taken seriously.

    BE: Hmmm. I’m one-eyed on a lot of things – domestic violence, child abuse, torture, all forms of social injustice, racism, corruption war……… There are many issues in which there really is no other position than to be one-eyed.

  21. Bill Forster / Geoff Lealand

    I think I have been on the Jim Mora show once of twice to do an interview but not as a panellist. I am in practice “banned” from Jim’s Show and also from Morning Report because RNZ thinks it adds value to Nine to Noon if I am exclusive to them.

    Incidentally, I am 39 and have been doing Nine to Noon since I was about 32. Apologies Geoff if that is not young enough for you.

    Also, Geoff, in your first post you say you want RNZ to get rid of me because I am too strident and in your second post that RNZ needs more “inflammed” opinion. Which is it?

  22. I can see why RNZ were so disappointed to find they had landed themselves with someone who actually has a worthwhile opinion. After all they take so much trouble to load the programme with the safe middle aged middlle oppinioned pundits that it must have been quite a shock. I give thanks for the Internet and BBC radio although the Tories are trying to pressure them as well.

    BE: I agree that an age spread among commentators is desirable on Afternoons and other programmes. But I recently expressed on this site my impatience with the burgeoning ageism which can be found in the comments I receive and, I suspect, in society at large. It is certainly evident in many of the comments on this issue. It seems to me it’s fine to say, ‘It would be good to have more young voices on Afternoons’, but the tenor of many of these comments is, ‘Too many of these boring (stupid) old fogies on the radio.’ The people who say this sort of thing need to realise that this is an unacceptable social prejudice, no different from sexism or racism. Stop it! I’m 73. If your brain’s in as good working order as mine, you’re in pretty good shape intellectually. And what the hell is ‘middle opinionated’?

  23. Bidrom: “Deprive the organization of cash and force a lowering of standards and the public will cease their support. Unfortunately it seems to work.”

    How would those in charge like it if a Labour Govt anti-trusted the likes of SKY to the point where its share price sank to junk bond status? Mind you, SKY has shot itself in the foot lately with its butchering of Mils Muliaina’s century speech.

  24. How do you reconcile your lambasting of RNZ for banning Bradbury, when you banned ‘millsy’ from making posts here, without so much as a “By your leave…” and a warning? You just chopped that poster right off at the knees. No warning whatsoever. Very cruel.

    BE: Millsy’s primary means of communication was personal abuse. Not only had she been warned before, she had actually been banned before for the identical reason. We then agreed to let her return. But nothing had changed.You seem to be confusing this site with a state-funded, public service agency and me with someone answerable to the public for what I allow or don’t allow on this site. ‘By your leaves’ don’t come into it. Like every one else who runs a blog, I’m a publisher with an absolute right, like a newspaper editor, to accept or not accept contributions or comments. As you very well know, Merv,the opinions you express are not likely to keep you off this site; how you express them may. We’ve been doing this for a couple of years now. Only three people have been banned. Doesn’t sound too much like a dictatorship.

  25. So Geoff Lealand, you want to remove the “from the right” side of the “from the left and from the right” discussion on nine to noon. This tells me everything I need to know about your understanding of a fair and balanced media!

  26. I have to agree with Lyn Duthie – you really had to have heard it. I see nothing wrong with Bradbury’s words and agree that they are no reason to ban someone but the RANT! I was so put out that I actually turned the radio off for a few minutes and when I turned it back on just heard his last word before finally taking a breath, and the following silence from the others present. In my usually broad minded opinion his presentation was totally over the top and certainly not what I want to listen to whilst having my afternoon coffee.
    I have to say, Brian, that the interactions between you and your “good friend and mortal political enemy, Michelle Boag.” are most enjoyable.

    BE: I agree that it’s a disadvantage that I didn’t hear it. But my point remains that: either Jim should hve stopped him (admittedly not an easy ask with a determined ranter); or the producer should have given him a warning about not doing it again. An immediate ban was about as sensible (and as good PR) as Lockwood Smith’s ban on the Herald.

  27. And in solidarity with Bomber, will you be refusing to appear until he is reinstated? Or refusing to listen? If enough of you do it… :-)

    BE: No, I don’t think Bomber needs my protection. If the matter hasn’t been resolved (perhaps by a meeting of the parties) when I’m next on Afternoons, I’ll probably mention it on the programme. That is, of course, if I’m ever on the programme again.

  28. I did say ‘inflamed (but informed) opinion’ . In respect of the Nine To Noon ‘Left/Right’ slot I suggest getting rid of the whole charade that it is a debate. Or better still, rename it as ‘Left/Wrong’?

  29. or instead of left/right how about…”has empathy for others in this world” / “thinks only about themselves and money money money and anyone not well off is just lazy”. Wordy but about right.

    My dad always said to vote National you have to be greedy or ignorant. That explains key’s appeal completely.

  30. I’m not sure why but tonight I looked up Bomber Bradbury on Youtube and randomly chose a clip with no idea of the content.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwyjIO2BH3I&feature=results_main&playnext=1&list=PLAA0EC36DD5BC67E4

    What it told me is, as Brian says, that Mr Bradbury is a superb broadcaster. It’s also clear that Mr Bradbury is a gutsy commentator with fire in his belly and a voice that needs to be heard.

    OK, maybe the excellent but urbane Panel segment on Jim Mora’s fine programme may not be the place for Bomber’s unfettered foaming.

    But this man has something to say – and RNZ knows that. I find Matthew Hooton’s views ludicrous but I enjoy his rants as well.

    Here’s a solution, RNZ: put Bradbury and Hooton on together, either on Nine-to-Noon (preferably) ør The Panel. Let them out-rant each other.

    You’ve got balance, you’ve got informative opinion from each end of the spectrum – and you’ve probably got vastly entertaining radio.

    Who knows, there could even be some occasional pearls of wisdom amid foaming rants. Let’s not forget that whatever your opinion of Mr Bradbury and Mr Hooton, they both represent a strand of opinion that needs to be heard.

    I suspect RNZ’s decision on Mr Bradbury was one of those off-the-cuff responses which the people responsible now regret. Time to make amends?

  31. Ive rolled around on thre floor laughing at some of Bombers “Brothers and Sisters “monologues.This one was no different to some of the others I ve heard.Hes a great broadcaster with a sharp eye for the ridiculous and a great sense of humour.Afternoons will be the loser for this decision.Who can I write to complain to about this kneejerk reaction ?Who actually makes this decision,surely not the polite and well versed Mr Mora?As an aside comparing Mr Hootens aggressive and humourless comments really doesnt deserve comparison.(No offence intended Mr Hooten)

  32. Has anything really changed since a drunken Muldoon used to drop a screwed up piece of paper on your lap with the questions on it Brian (then fire you if you didn’t ask them)? Ahhh….No! Personally Im completely over the arrogant pretense that somehow NZ is a democratic and free speaking country. What a larf? Between Boag, the business round table and a constant succession of NZ Govts who promise “all” to the people at election time, then serve “all” up on a plate for their corporate masters. Yes massa, don’t hit me. I’ll lower the minimum wage, jus dont hit me again.
    The way the “elite” in this country arrogantly dismiss any real free speech simply shows how undemocratic we actually are. Its as if a bunch of ever ardent maternalists and paternalists are permanently in charge here and they simply wont let anyone who doesnt agree with them speak freely. “Shhhhh! sit down or we’ll ridicule you….this is NZ”. Shocking small town crap which unbelievably has never changed, that is the real indictment of our society. Tall poppy knockers everywhere with nary an original idea between them. DOH! Go Homer.

  33. Like Disraeli, Bomber becomes inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity. Less is more, Bomber.

    BE: “inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity” To put it in words of one syllable!

    JC: In fact the quote is by Disraeli, who was describing Gladstone:

    “A sophistical rhetorician, inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity, and gifted with an egotistical imagination that can at all times command an interminable and inconsistent series of arguments to malign an opponent and to glorify himself.”

  34. Lyn Duthie
    October 12th, 2011 at 10:00
    “It was truly excruciating and when he stopped the silence from Jim and the other panelist said it all. Ifor one will be glad not to have to hear him again.”

    So the answer here is; anyone who we don’t like is banned from expressing themselves? Hmmmm, I do believe that some countries have tried that – and it does not work.

    There’s an old expression; “I disagree with what you’re saying but will defend to the death your right to say it.”

    It seems some of us have forgotten that.

    Meanwhile, in the Middle East, some nations have fought hard for that philosophy.

    Y’know, I don’t particularly like the things that Cameron Slater (Whaleoil) says. But if he was banned from expressing an opinion, I think I’d be starting to get worried.

  35. cmitson
    October 12th, 2011 at 23:06

    Precisely!!

  36. @cmitson

    True, he is a very good broadcaster. First time I’ve seen him. Words roll off, easily and fluently; animated in a measured way, but not annoyingly so.

  37. Somehow I had missed the news about Bomber being banned, and a google search brought me here… only to find he had been banned for a broadcast I had heard live. They really banned him for that?

    As I listened to the live broadcast I started nodding in agreement, was soon laughing then finished by oooooh!ing at bomber’s brilliant, outrageous, over-the-top rant.

    If Bomber was on the panel every day I would soon get bored and turn it off. But to have him stir the pot once in a while is amusing, refreshing and thought provoking. I hope NatRad has a calming cup of chamomile tea and invites him back.

  38. I blame Richard Griffin and his political masters.

    The National Party has always regarded RNZ as a bunch of rabid lefties. They ask awkward questions.

    We cannot have that.

    Those of us who are born to rule must never be questioned. Which is why ministers and the pm regularly decline to be interviewed.

    Bradbury is an irritating bombastic fuckwit ranter.

    How long has he been aired by RNZ on Moraghs prog?

    Bradbury was asked to express what was on his mind. He did so. He was banned.

    Who is next? Hooton? Farrar?

    I do not think so.

    Richard will look after them because Crosby/Textor says so.

    Brand Key has to be defended at all costs.

    Especially this close to an election that National is allegedly sleep walking into an absolute majority.

  39. “I’m saddened too because Afternoons is a really good programme with an intelligent and talented host, a stable of informed and entertaining panellists and access to a seemingly limitless store of experts on every topic under the sun.”

    Oh really? Mora is an airhead who should stick with TV, a medium more suited to his talents such as they are. Afternoons with Jim is part of the dumbing down and blanding out of National Radio. Sounds like us yah. Who in their right mind could posibly want to know what’s on Twitter, whatever that is? As for the Panel, isn’t it mainly an opportunity for the old boys and girls club from the chattering classes to engage in mutual grooming, whilst glossing over a mixture of the trivia and important issues of the day? Lovely to have you on, that was one of his catchphrases. Bring back Wayne. Now there was a radio voice. And some worthwhile music instead of the current predominance of pap (excepting the live segments by NZ musicians).

  40. Lyn Duthie said: “…You see it wasn’t really what he said, it was how he said it. It was truly excruciating…”

    Indeed; and that’s how Bradbury is all the time, in any of his media manifestations. Agree or disagree, how anyone can listen to him at all is beyond me.

  41. Your summary of the Bradbury “affair” was great thanks Brian. Oh that we aired a bit more passion on MSM. (Especially if in agreement with his words.)

  42. It is interesting to hear comments ” that he didn’t let the host get a word in”
    That seems to be not uncommon,
    Has anyone ever got a word in or even been able to put a question when that despicable creature “Joyce” is ever “interviewed” by the media?

  43. I watched BB on Stratos on Friday night with Bernard Hickey and Selwyn Manning as his guests and it was great.Not a rant in sight and his guests were informative and interesting and their views were put forward with no bias.Bomber let them talk with no interference or correcting their views with his views.His show is worth watching.What he said about Key was only what happened and he reported it as such. Nothing wrong with that!
    I found the recent rant about how wonderful Key is by the Mad Butcher on Moras show totally offensive as Mora made no attempt to stop him the two times he went on and on about Key”Best PM ever and so on”.It was not just a little comment but an excitable orgasmic validation of wonderful Key.Now the Butcher IS strident!

  44. I agree. Every time the so called Mad Butcher appears on radio or TV I change the channel.
    If anyone is self opinionated and all ME it is him

  45. Part of the reason for Bomber’s rant was John Keys response to the person who tried to leap into the chamber. The video footage that showed JK in a very poor light on Stuff disappeared and was very quickly replaced with a brief sanitised version. I have tried to find the original unedited version, to no avail. This censorship seems to have gone un-noticed. Disturbing.

  46. I like Your Article about Bomber Bradbury – a gutless reaction by Radio New Zealand that smacks of political hypersensitivity. @ Brian Edwards Media Perfect just what I was searching for! .