The Broadcasting Standards Authority has once again declined a complaint I lodged against TV One news for an item screened about the Australian carbon tax.
In it the news reader said “Australia is following NZ’s lead on reducing pollution by unveiling a new carbon tax scheme “
My complaint was that the term polluters and pollution are an inaccurate description of carbon emissions and someone who emits them. The most obvious reason of course being that carbon dioxide is not a pollutant and that carbon is in fact a theoretical unit, it is not real and therefore can not pollute anything. I also said it was insulting and offensive to emitters and used by people due either to ignorance or the desire to insult and offend. News readers I said should not be in either category.
Anyway the BSA state that “it is common and acceptable for news reports to employ informal or simplified language of this nature in order to convey matters of science to the average viewer in a manner that will be easily understood. We do not consider that the scientific differences between pollution and emissions would have misled viewers.”
There is so much wrong with this decision it is difficult to know where to start so I won’t other than to say misleading viewers is not acceptable and the BSA excuse about simplified terminology is nonsense. In general terms the BSA which is supposed to maintain standards of accuracy amongst others is in fact part of a society that is condoning the distorting of truth.
I find this unacceptable and I will continue to complain whenever I hear this term used by a news reader. Bad things happen when good people do nothing. If we do nothing the children of today will know nothing other than CO2 is a pollutant and a cow belching is a polluter. If we want a society that respects honesty and truth and detests propaganda we must complain each and every time the term is used by news readers. Politicians can be as ignorant and as offensive as they like so you can’t complain when they say it but you can when news readers state it as a matter of fact, and I encourage you to do it.
Paul Henry got nailed for using the term retarded which is an accurate description of someone who is mentally slow according to the dictionary. The BSA nailed him because they said it was offensive. Polluter is an offensive term but they don’t give a damn about that. They are very selective and nothing more than a puppet of the PC mentality. They are not upholding standards; they are assisting with the lowering of our broadcasting standards by allowing CO2 to be called a pollutant. Paul Henry called their decision against him “a ridiculous decision by ridiculous people”; I think he said it well.
We are on a slippery slope when we allow this sort of misinformation to go unchallenged. As I blogged recently Tim Groser in Durban told the world our emissions had reduced when in fact they have increased. The BSA might say he is using simplified language when he described our increasing emissions as decreasing. I say can it be anything other than dishonest to describe something that is increasing as “decreasing”? And should a NZ Government Minister be doing that?
The Treasury in the budget this year said that under Kyoto NZ had agreed to reduce our net average emissions to 1990 levels. This is not true; we agreed to increase our net average emissions to no more than our 1990 gross emission level. They are deliberately misleading the people of NZ in the 2011 Budget by saying Kyoto is about reducing emissions when it is in fact only about limiting the increase. This is the NZ Treasury and this is the NZ Budget, deception should not be a part of either yet they do it. I have complained to them but so far to no avail. I might revisit it in the New Year.
I will sign off now for Christmas. New members continue to join every day. I intend taking a couple of weeks off to work on my orchard and take a break for few days. There is much to do when I get back including getting some pressure onto this Government not to sign up to a second round Kyoto if it includes harmless biological emissions.
Merry Christmas everyone, Paul Henry said it best and I think we have to realise that there are a lot of ridiculous people making ridiculous decisions; especially in the area of livestock emissions. They will be far from my mind this holiday season. I will be able to do this because I believe that ridiculous people will always be found out in the end. Let’s take comfort in that and drink to that! Merry Christmas.