Rodney Hide co-hosted the Radio Live Willie Jackson and JT show yesterday, standing in for John Tamihere . Anyone familiar with the show expects Willie to get over-excited and combative and he was. That makes it nigh on impossible to have a measured discussion, which was especially so given the topic of conversation - the Ports of Auckland. But Rodney wasn't letting Jackson out-shout him. Freed up from representing a party or the government he was throwing the BS word liberally at his co-host. But in typical Hide-style following it up by explaining why.
Prior to that discussion, which dominated the programme, Willie asked
Rodney whether Gareth Morgan should have paid for the Blanket Man's
funeral. That's his business Rodney replied. Willie asked, "But
did he do it for publicity?" "Yes" said Rodney. "Otherwise why would you
ring the paper to tell them about it. If you didn't want the publicity
you would pay for it anonymously." Quite.
Jackson canvassed the melt-down of ACT probing how Rodney had handled it. How tough it had it been emotionally. "Nobody died," Rodney shot back, "Living through the Christchurch earthquakes is tough. Losing a loved one. That's tough." He was upbeat on the new opportunities ahead. I had a sense that his refusal to sob over spilt milk frustrated Jackson.
But he did relate a discussion he'd had with Don Brash about Don's publicly-stated goal of getting 15 percent of the vote as ACT leader. He apparently counselled Brash to scale it back and over-deliver. But Don was adamant that as he had taken National to however many percent of the vote in 2005 he could expect as much for ACT. Rodney said Don couldn't understand that it wasn't his vote.
Of course the tired 'R' words - raving right-winger, rich mates, red neck, racist, radical - labels were getting a fair airing from callers and Jackson. Rodney tried to get Jackson to see that it is he, Willie, that has a closed mind. That he was raised on socialism and can't look at matters any other way. "There is no space in your head for different ideas." Then he called him a lefty-liberal pinko. It was quite jolly.
What I most enjoyed was Hide's lack of hesitation in calling-out talkers on real racism and ignorance. One man bemoaning foreigners taking all the jobs was reminded very firmly that when he needed medical care he would likely find himself relying on a foreigner. And would be glad of it.
When asked how NZ First and Winston would work out he said Winston won't work. He doesn't work. He is lazy. The laziest MP.
It was mentioned that Rodney was at Lincoln University with David Shearer. He said he oversaw Shearer's PhD work.
That's most of what I can remember. With my on and off attention span it might not be totally accurate. I was listening through one earphone, writing an article and dealing with the odd customer simultaneously. If you want to check it out you can.
I look forward to him co-hosting with John Tamihere who is far more erudite than Willie and a better match for Hide's intellect. Or even better. Hosting solo.
Previewing the Australian election
20 minutes ago