While we politicians sometimes bridle at criticisms which can seem harsh, superficial, or unfair, most of us will defend the right of the media to investigate and criticise without fear or favour. We should fiercely defend that right because informing the public of bungling or corruption ??? especially by politicians and government agencies – is essential to stop it happening again.
The refusal of the National government to address this important issue as part of the Search and Surveillance Bill currently before Parliament is driven by politics not principle. The Minister of Justice, who was until recently the SFO Minister, alleges that because Labour will not vote for the Bill unless it better protects the liberties of the fourth estate, we in Labour are soft on crime.
In other words, National is attempting to gain politically by positioning Labour. National is taking a superficial populist approach for its own political ends. This should concern those who think the principles at stake are important.
This is one of a number of worrying events concerning the relationship between the media and the government