Calling the Cranks

Calling the Cranks

While reporting the news, I’ve come to learn that some so-called “important” people will always be in demand for comment. Ministers, businesspeople and academics are forever having cameras and dictaphones shoved at their overexposed gobs. Meanwhile, more marginal characters get passed over for media coverage. This week, it was time to give New Zealand’s rough diamonds a chance to sparkle in the media limelight by asking them the key questions on the real issues of the day.

Richard Prosser

The Investigate magazine columnist and New Zealand First MP earned infamy when he suggested that young, male Muslims be banned from flying, and wrote that he would not “stand by while [the] rights and freedoms of … New Zealanders and Westerners are denigrated by a sorry pack of misogynist troglodytes from Wogistan.” Prosser has since retracted the statements, but has he changed his tune entirely when it comes to Muslim menaces on the footy field?

We’re wondering about the upcoming NRL judiciary decision. Sonny Bill Williams is out for two weeks awaiting the decision about the alleged shoulder charge on Willie Mason – do you think that careless move could be due to Ramadan and Sonny Bill lacking meals?

I’m not seeing a connection to be perfectly honest.

Well as you know, Sonny Bill is a convert to Islam-

So he would’ve been fasting, but yeah no, ah, all I can say is that from personal experience having, having done the odd fast in the past it doesn’t sort of affect your daily energy levels at that point that much.

Even that sort of mental agility, obviously he didn’t mean to – do you think he meant to shoulder charge?

I didn’t actually see the incident in question so I can’t really comment on it.

So you don’t think Sonny Bill has taken any sort of militant approach to his play since he converted?

What, converted to league, or converted to rugby?

To Islam.

No I don’t know at all mate.

Who are your picks for the rest of the season?

Haven’t worked them out yet.

And ah, what’ve you thought of Sonny Bill’s performance in boxing?

I guess if he enjoys it that’s a good thing. I’m not a big fan of it myself but there you go.

Do you think we’re likely to see more of these sporting polymaths in the future, switching between codes all the time?

I guess, you know, sport’s an area that’s becoming more and more professional so I suppose people who can make a living by doing these sorts of things will take their dollars where they come.

Do you think New Zealand First needs to have some kind of policy which would promote code-switching?

I can’t see us having that as a policy.

Richard Prosser, thanks very much for your time, have a good afternoon.

You too, cheerio.

[Hangs up].

It was deeply distressing to hear to see this formerly self-described “freedom-loving, gonad-equipped, libertarian go-getter” embracing “the twin evils of diversity and multiculturalism.” One can only hope that Prosser sees the light and ceases to be a “weak, stupid, effeminate, erectile dysfunctional, naïve, apologist, namby-pamby, thumb-sucking, lefty pinko” before SBW runs onto Moore Park with 20 kilos of TNT strapped to his chest.

Martin Doutré

This Canadian-born self-styled “astro-archaeologist” claims to have uncovered evidence of a pre-Maori Celtic civilisation in New Zealand. Along with arguing that a government conspiracy lay behind the September 11 attacks, and exchanging friendly correspondence with Holocaust denier David Irving, Mr. Doutré believes his findings about megalithic “astronomical alignment grids” in Northland are being covered up by the political establishment in a corporate Maori money-grab. What would Doutré think of the all-Maori X-Factor final?

Mr. Doutré, we’d like to know your thoughts on Jackie Thomas winning TV3’s X-Factor.

Um, I don’t even know anything about that.

Well she beat out Whenua Patuwai and Benny Tipene in the final, and she’s now gone on to record her single “It’s Worth It,” debuting at number one in the New Zealand charts.

No I’m not really into it. I’m a jazz trumpet player and I don’t know a thing about it.

Well what did you think of her initial audition, singing “Skinny Love” by Bon Iver?

I’m an old guy of 66, I don’t really follow any of that much, I’m afraid.

Well Daniel Bedingfield effectively ensured that she’d be in the final by threatening to quit if she wasn’t brought back, do you have any opinion on that?

I really, I know nothing of the whole thing … I don’t even know who she is or what she does.

Well she’s Nga Puhi on her father’s side, from Greymouth, formerly unemployed – is this a success story for the West Coast?

Ah, OK, what sort of music does she do? What sort of category would you put her into?

Well, she started off with covers. I guess pop music.

Oh, OK.

Who would you have preferred to see winning X-Factor?

I don’t know, I don’t even have a TV these days, I’m off in a whole different world.

Thanks for your time.

Doutré’s ignorance of what is arguably the most important cultural event in New Zealand ever suggests that the author of Ancient Celtic New Zealand casts doubt on his current reputation as one of New Zealand’s foremost anthropologists. One can only hope that this interview will encourage him to delve into how the “Northern Alignment Sequence” of megalithic stone structures he discovered led to the formation of True Bliss in 1999.

Don Richards

Don is the founder of Positive Money New Zealand. The group aims to end fractional reserve banking and create a new Monetary Policy Committee, which, according to its website, “authorises the creation of a certain amount of new money … The government is free to use this money however it chooses. … all in all, $500m could be added to the economy in a little under 20 minutes, at the cost of just a few hundred dollars.” Did Richards see an ally in renowned rap artist Kanye West?

So you’re in favour of “positive money” and you outline your views on your website.

Well positive money means money is created debt-free by the government rather than private transnationals for their own benefit.

Right, and in recent years we’ve heard hip-hop artist Kanye West sing “La, la, la la wait ‘til I get my money right, la, la, la la then you can’t tell me nothing right.” Is that the sort of message that Positive Money wants to send?

I don’t agree with Kanye West on most things, though I don’t actually know the contents of the song.

Well that was off the album Graduation. In another track, “Good Life,” he sings “Have you ever popped champagne on a plane while getting some brain? Whipped it out, she said ‘I never seen snakes on a plane,’ Whether you broke or rich you gotta get biz. Havin’ money’s not everything, not having it is.”

Yep, OK.

Do you think Mr. West’s recent album Yeezus suggests a new outlook on his part? The track “New Slaves” includes the lines, “What you want, a Bentley? Fur coat? A diamond chain? All you blacks want all the same things, Used to only be niggas, now everybody playin’, Spending everything on Alexander Wang, New Slaves.” That seems to suggest a kind of anti-materialism on his part, especially when we consider its pared-down production values.

Without knowing the context of the songs, I couldn’t really comment. Positive money’s more about reclaiming control of our money supply away from the multinational banks and allowing the government to create money interest-free.

What then, about Kimye naming their baby North West?

I have no thoughts.

You have no thoughts?


Mr. Richards, thank you for your time.

While Don’s frosty response to Yeezy’s monetary ruminations doesn’t look promising, Critic looks forward to the day when Kanye is put in charge of the mint, printing everyone in hyperinflation-wracked New Zealand enough dollar bills to get their rubbish-bin fires started.

Sean Palmer

Sean is the Chair of Monarchy New Zealand, an organisation dedicated to keeping the face of whoever’s bum happens to be on the British throne on our $20 notes. MNZ’s website argues that monarchies provide a better gender balance. While this might be a little contentious now that little George has been born, there were more important questions to be asked about a very important British nobleman.

Sean Palmer, I’m sure you’re all very excited about the news of the new successor?

I’m sorry, do you mean the new legislation, or …?

No, I mean the news that’s coming out right now about the new Doctor Who. Peter Capaldi is tipped to replace Matt Smith at the helm of the show.

Ah, how does that relate to Monarchy New Zealand?

Well, he is a Time Lord.

Uh huh.

And I notice on your website you are displaying telephone boxes.

Uh, yeah, I think that’s a reference to the ones in Christchurch.

Not a reference to the TARDIS?

No, can’t say that it is. I’m sure we have several ardent fans in the organisation, but um, yeah, um.

Is the foul-mouthed Scotsman who played Malcolm Tucker in The Thick of It really fit for this title?

Um …

Is it perhaps time for a female Doctor? Should the Time Lord aristocracy be modernising?

Some have suggested that Billie Piper should instead take the role. Hello?

While Sean was clearly taken aback by our questions, it’s critical that the organisation defends the latest incarnation of the Doctor. Otherwise, we could see the absurd situation whereby Doctor Who fans are allowed to vote for Daniel Rigby or, God forbid, Idris Elba, as the Time Lord.

Mary Byrne

The National Co-ordinator of the Fluoride Action Network New Zealand is pretty sure she knows what’s what when it comes to assessing the evidence for water fluoridation. Celebrating after the Hamilton City Council voted to stop adding fluoride to its water supply, Byrne said she was sure that “fluoride is linked to many adverse health effects such as arthritis, thyroid dysfunction, lowered IQ and hypersensitivity.” How would this fact-focussed dental campaigner cope with the relationship reversals of a silver-screen vampire?

First of all, Katy Perry has said that her meeting with Robert Pattinson after he broke up with Kristen Stewart was purely about being a supportive friend. Do you believe that?

Oh, I think you’re asking the wrong person. I don’t know what you’re talking about.

So pop star Katie Perry-

What’s that got to do with fluoride?

Well she was talking to Robert Pattinson, famous for portraying a vampire, shortly after he broke up with co-star Kristen Stewart, and said she was just providing support. Does that have any credibility?

Why would you be asking me this? Are you wanting to talk about fluoridation or what? What’s the point of this?

That she denies that there’s any relationship between them.

Oh this is just a joke, obviously. I can’t be bothered wasting my time with this, this is ridiculous. You’re obviously not wanting to talk about fluoridation, are you?

[Hangs up].

Byrne’s response is disappointing to say the least. If Fluoride Action is serious about recruiting the youth of today to their cause, they would do well to understand that the crypto-fascist dental propaganda machine is a fervent user of fang-filled films to sell their deadly message. Any sign of a break between the toothy twosome of Kristen and Rob should be a cause for celebration at FANZ.

The investigation revealed a shocking lack of preparation and research by the organisations interviewed. Critic sincerely hopes that these cranks read up swiftly on current affairs like Snooki’s post-baby body and Beyonce’s latest on-stage hair nightmare before they receive further serious media attention.
This article first appeared in Issue 19, 2013.
Posted 2:29pm Sunday 11th August 2013 by Jack Montgomerie.