Sunday, November 14, 2004

Investigate the editorship

This is the extended, untidier script from my Agenda media thing three weeks ago...

Investigate Magazine is one of those absolute gems - a self-styled home for true hard-hitting investigative journalism, a bastion for the truth, and, incongruously, the home of very conservative Christian values.

Editor Ian Wishart is well known for his investigative journalism and best-selling books looking into solid public-interest topics like the machinations around the sale of the BNZ.

Of late though he has become better known for his conviction in his Christian beliefs, expounded through his radio shows on Radio Rhema and Newstalk ZB. And also of course through Investigate Magazine.

This magazine is always worth a look for the shock value alone. All manner of otherwise contradictory values sit alongside each other, as with that other prominent Christian values proponent - United Future.
In the same way that United Future manage to be the Hunting Fishing Shooting Gambling Smoking and Drinking Christian Party, in this same all over the place manner Investigate Magazine manages to combine; hard hitting investigations into serious material like organized crime in New Zealand, Prime Ministerial character assassinations, bible lessons about everything from personal morality to the reality or otherwise of Noah's flood, discussions on, in fact almost a preoccupation with, intelligent design as a theory over Evolution or Darwinism, Business stories, conspiracy theories and, in the kitchen sink capacity, film and DVD reviews.

Wow, a bit all over the place.

Investigate really hit the headlines with their Nov 03 Helen Clark is a Lesbian Issue. The story combined very amateur Freudian analysis with a bunch of bare-faced and unsubstantiated 'secret friend' claims that our Helen was, aside from legislating the downfall of western society, engineering a secret homosexualising of the public service and country as a way of getting back at New Zealand for her having to bury her true sexuality.

No really. That was the story.

In an interview on bfm with Noelle McCarthy about the article Wishart pronounced that he knew the PM was gay. How? He just knew. Investigative journalism at its best.

The evidence amounted to something like look at her mates, check out her haircut, she didn't even want to get married and her fondness for wearing trousers - or some other list of similarly flimsy arguments, but the media splash was created.

Helen had the magnamanity not to sue them, though I'm not sure her doing so would have served to discredit them more than a cursory glance over their publication would.

The religious right sits very uncomfortably in easy going NZ, yet still they bang away at it. Investigate Magazine is a conspiracy theorist theologian mag. Kind of aliens stole Elvis because he was against abortion and man those homosexuals are ruining society.

Other notable stories have included a detailed look at why the moonlanding never happened, which to be fair left the jury out, campaigns against the Civil Unions bill and the Decriminalisation of Prostitution and the continued advocacy of Intelligent Design, which is kind of like Creationism in drag.

Well, what else to say about an Investigative Magazine that quotes the Old Testament to explain truths to readers? Buy it, I guess is all I can say. it is the most unintentionally entertaining read around.


At 8:46 AM, Blogger sagenz said...

The lesbian bit is only relevant to the extent she may have lied to the public if she is gay. It was the direct quotes of the socialist ideas for New Zealand that I found most disturbing. New Zealand is living with the consequences of helen working out her repressed upbringing and personality.

At 4:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Simon Pound, I think you are a lesbian. Dare I say it you need a B.B.C to clear your thoughts. Awesome

At 10:13 AM, Blogger Idiot/Savant said...

Sage: "lied to the public"? How so? I don't recall her ever being asked...

But obviously the NZ media's respect for personal privacy and belief that who our politicians are fucking is none of our fucking business bespeaks an Evil Liberal Media Conspiracy of Silence!

At 12:54 PM, Blogger Simon Pound said...

I hope the fact that I thought the story irrelevant and hysterical came over in that piece.
For all I care she could be an oyster diver. It doesn't matter. The story however proved no such thing. And the links between the flimsy claims and her legislative calender draws a bow too long for my liking.

At 1:03 PM, Blogger Simon Pound said...

And yes, I most certainly am a lesbian in need of BBC. World Service perhaps?

At 11:57 AM, Blogger Peter said...

I tried reading Investigate's review of Selwyn Mannings book on Ahmed Zaoui, but unfortunately they had asked Jon Eisen (author of some widely discredited books for AUT) to review it, which made an easy target for Ian Wishart's rebuttal. Sigh.

At 11:57 AM, Blogger Peter said...

and thanks for the link - have linked you back. Cheers


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