Home > Media, The Body Politic > Media Review for 26 May: Q+A, Susan Wood, & some casual racism

Media Review for 26 May: Q+A, Susan Wood, & some casual racism


painting the media

Sunday morning TV current affairs yielded a wide range of issues discussed; Len Brown and the Auckland Unitary Plan; Hekia Parata’s political career; US-NZ relations; New Zealand Universities; the high incidence of asthma in Maori; the Living Wage campaign; the rising careers of Dayna Grant and Maisey Rika; and the recently released findings of the Independent Police Complaints Authority. Plus the obligatory ‘plug’ for TV3′s “X Factor” on TV3′s  “The Nation“.

On the issue of the IPCA’s report, “Q+A” host, Susan Wood introduced the issue with this segment;

SUSAN WOOD: “And the police conduct authority delivering it’s findings on the Urewera raid. Some road blocks and searches found  to be unlawful. Some on the receiving end thinking about compensation.”

[cut to:]

RUATOKI CITIZEN: “Because you know, stress and all that kind of stuff. Cleaning the house. Because it took quite a while. That tear gas is quite hard to get rid of. I had to paint the ceiling.”

SUSAN WOOD:  (smiling) “Who’d have known?”

Time Stamp: 1.05 – 1.20

TVNZ – Q+A – Series 2013, Episode 12

A screen-shot captures the moment when Wood made light of the young man’s experience, with her flippant, dismissive remark,


Q+A 26.5.2013 - Susan Wood on tear gas - who'd have know

“Who’d have known?”


Yes, Susan. Who’d have known that a white pakeha could so openly lack empathy with fellow New Zealanders, in our own country, that had been terrorised by a para-military exercise that our own IPCA labelled as unlawful, unjustifiable and unreasonable?

Who would have thought, Susan, that women and  young children could be locked up in a garage for nine hours under guard,  without food, and a supposedly reputable journo like you could make light of it?

Who’d have thought, Susan, that an entire small town could be locked down and sealed off from the rest of the country in a scene straight out of C.K. Stead’s “Smith’s Dream/Sleeping Dogs” – and it would be an object of mirth for you?

When something like this – perhaps one of the most shameful events in our recent history – is so casually dismissed by  you, then perhaps you should reconsider if you’re in the right job.

Your flippancy might be suitable on the cyber-sewer that is Whalesoil or  David Farrar’s marginally less odious Kiwiblog,  like this insensitive clod, anonymously revelling in his racism,


ruatoki raids_kiwiblog_rightwing halfwit post

Kiwiblog – Greens see racism everywhere


Is that the kind of racist moron you’re lining up with, Susan?

Sorry, but  one expects better from a supposedly experienced,  professional in our media. Just because they were brown folk and poor, and not like your refined middle-class neighbours in your fine, leafy suburb – a bit of empathy mightn’t go astray here.

Or  has the mask slipped, revealing the true attitudes of white mainstream media in this country?


Robert Kennedy


This blogpost was first published on The Daily Blog on 26 May 2013.



= fs =

  1. Priss
    10 December 2012 at 2:41 pm

    Susan Wood needs to build on her empathy. Making light of something so damaging is sickening.

  2. 21 June 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Snap Frank – I can’t stand Susan Wood – ever since she was the host of the Fashion Awards at the Michael Fowler Centre where I was the manager for a number of years. She had the whole supercilious I’m famous and way more important than you airs wafting around her. The me people earn respect through their behaviour not through their fame or in some cases their infamy – which is often confused.

  3. mcclairy
    21 June 2013 at 2:38 pm

    It’s all about the dumbing down of TVNZ. It is everywhere, in programming, where I am lucky to find a couple of programmes in any given week to watch. Seven Sharp ? Who ? Forgettable and now forgotten.
    Susan W comes into my prejudicial category of the “Spoilt Rich B___C, remembering the furore when out of control news readers salaries were under the microscope and Susan W threw the biggest wobbly of all of them when they were brought down to size. I record Q&A and The Nation and find myself fast forwarding through Q&A these days as being irrelevant. Johannson (Spelling?) is good value but note he is not on each week, instead it is aaaaaagh, not Fran Sullivan again, she is so predictable. Key and Natz can do no wrong.
    C’mon what happened to the role of the Fourth Estate to hold the government to account ? There is plenty of ammunition these day to take the government to task. Don’t even get me started on commercialising RNZ now being discussed and will get Frank waxing eloquently in his fine, much appreciated, style 🙂

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