Brian Edwards Media

On Mike Hosking – Don’t Say I Never Warned You




Hi, my name is Brian. Edwards to be precise. You may remember me. I used to be on television. Started in Christchurch on a magazine show called Town and Around. Went North to Wellington to audition for a current affairs show called Gallery. Knew bugger all about politics and stuff and was even less interested. Bluffed my way through the audition.

Cut a long story short, got the job, got famous and thought I was the bee’s knees. (Hazard of the job really – being up yourself.) Fast forward: Left TV, did this and that. In no particular order: unsuccessful Labour candidate for Parliament, trade union worker, school teacher, TV game show host, polytechnic lecturer, Saturday morning radio host, media advisor and media trainer with wife Judy Callingham. Clients included PM Helen Clark and Labour Party ministers. Today semi-retired media consultant and occasional broadcaster.

Where is this going, Brian? Well, it’s this chap Hosking. People complaining that he’s patently politically biased to the Right and shouldn’t be chairing political debates before next month’s election.

Here’s my take on it. His personal politics are Right Wing. So far as I know, he doesn’t deny it. My personal politics, when I was a radio and television interviewer, were Left Wing. When a national newspaper accused me of allowing my personal political views to affect my interviewing, of being ‘politically biased’, I sued the paper for defamation. And won.

You see, there’s nothing wrong with current affairs broadcasters having personal political opinions, however strongly held, providing they don’t allow those opinions to undermine or infect their on-air work. Indeed, it’s doubtful whether a political eunuch, if such a current affairs broadcaster exists, could do the job at all.

I don’t much care for Mike Hosking myself. He comes across to me as an arrogant prick, more interested in his own opinions than anyone else’s. But that doesn’t amount to a political bias. And if you want to publicly accuse him of having such a bias and allowing it to infect his work as a professional current affairs broadcaster, you better come up with some pretty solid evidence. Or risk finding yourself in court.

Don’t say I never warned you.


  1. I remember you as a Gallery interviewer Brian. My gosh you were good. Asking incisive questions. I don’t remember you spouting your opinions as such. Correct me if I am wrong.

  2. Was it also Gallery where you were a catalyst in bringing the postal workers strike to an end by getting the two sided to talk to each other? Now, that was a public service.

  3. That was it back then Brian, here was this brash young lantern jawed chap with the Irish accent asking too many questions of people in higher places so he must either be a leftie commie or a member of the IRA.

    Can’t help laughing now looking back to those times but your voice was right up there with Winston McCarthy’s here in little old godzone.

    Hosking is a prick, as you say, but I don’t mind him, I know Jacinda doesn’t give two hoots if he is the election interviewer. Probably work in her favour.

  4. My problem is that I cant stand listening to him.His bias might not be a problem .His manner, his voice, his dress code are like a form of torture to me .I find this leaves me unable to listen to any Mike Hoskin as his opinion has always left a bitter taste in my mouth.Its a Pavlov’s dog sort of thing.

  5. 5

    BE: “I don’t much care for Mike Hosking myself. He comes across to me as an arrogant prick, more interested in his own opinions than anyone else’s”

    Yeah, but have you noticed how ‘The Hosk’ prefaces 7 Sharp by drumming the desk with his fingers during the show’s jangle? He does it with such an aplomb, inflecting both an impatience and an affected insouciance, all at the same time; it’s now becoming his trademark. Not so much an embodiment of his mojo or conceit, but as a presenter’s esthetic who’s at the top of his game.

    This kid, as they say, is “Too cool for school”.

  6. I agree Brian. Personally I think it’s a bit of a rort that he has such incredibly strong political views on display on one of the nation’s largest viewing shows (is it?) with minimal balance, but I don’t think this compromises his ability to host a debate thoroughly and fairly.

    I actually think he’ll make a good moderator, especially if he has to rein in the likes of Winny the slippery eel, but as for Labour v National I think he’ll do a good job (despite being an arrogant prick).

    I think it’s important for everyone to keep an open mind about all political conversations, including those hosting them, otherwise it becomes too easy to dismiss someone and their point of view. Just look at what’s happening in the US with people being dismissed from a conversation because of their voting preference. Let us not descend into close-mindedness or stubbornness, lest we end up hosting a national TV show!

  7. I don’t watch Hoskings much. Mainly because his overt biases infect his on-air connect.

    Like when he said New Zealand didn’t have an electric car charging network after he’d driven a Tesla for a week, provided by Charge.Net’s operator (who operate an national electric car charging network.

    Meanwhile, here’s me, a humble Nissan Leaf driver, who driven his electric car from Auckland to Bluff, to Cape Reinga and back to Auckland.

    Because I could, thanks to the Nationwide network of chargers.

    I’ll await the letter from from the lawyer. But don’t notify my via Seven Sharp. I don’t watch dishonest rubbish.

  8. Don’t watch, hear or read him any more. I know what he’s going to say before he says it. So predictable. But at least you know where he’s coming from. Some of the other possible commentators/moderators are much more difficult to read.

  9. Hosking has the same problem as Paul Holmes had. Their employers over-hyped them as many times as good as they were/are and they believed it.

    • Their employers are/were hyping them on the basis of ratings. That’s their employers’ job. Next?

      • 9.1.1

        My point is that they believed it was true and not just hype. Most people would have recognised it for what it was.

  10. Re-Joyce for the Nats, the Aussie Bishop has declared war on the Kiwi Labour congregation. Wonder what opinion the “prick” Hoskings has on this interesting scenario.

  11. “Too cool for school”.Possibly “a legend in his own mind” also

  12. “He comes across to me as an arrogant prick”

    “Pot” … “Black” … nothing personal of course.

  13. No time for Hosking on TV………too much ‘me’ and not enough ‘we’. Somehow, Paul Henry appeals, probably because he runs a higher renegade index. On radio, Hosking is a nightmare….you have to listen to him, when mere hearing ought to suffice. The rabid right wing bias isn’t much of a problem for me, because I prefer it that way, but since Key threw the country under a train, National seems to need all the help they can get.

  14. I struggle to imagine a “Hosking” type figure even having a Broadcasting career in the UK (Clarkson aside, but he’s nowhere near News). There presenters are often suspected of a bias, but to be as overtly partisan as Hosking would be career suicide.

    • It used to be the same here when I worked in radio in the early seventies. I would have been instantly dismissed for taking the stances Hosking does. Actually he would not have been employed in the first place. Too vulgar by far

    • And so it would have been in New Zealand not so many years ago.

  15. Then there is Paddy Gower after coming face to face with Jacinda Ardern proclaimed his new found favourite song is ‘Blinded by the light’. Hosking “the prick” is having none of this revved up douche and reckons in any given ‘minute’ his wheels are faster.

  16. After last nights debacle I think he needs to be removed immediately(for the good of all involved)He needs to join the Trump Entourage(I think he will fit like a glove