Judith Collins says she has stepped down because of an email that says she did something that she never did. Should we believe her?

It's a pretty safe bet that when a certain blogger whom we don't name came up with his "trophy wall" of individuals that he had "harpooned" through his work, he didn't ever think that the biggest head mounted on it would be that of the National Party's Minister of Justice, his close friend Judith Collins. If I were Chris Trotter, I'd probably reach to compare it to Actaeon being torn to pieces by his own dogs after Artemis turned him into a stag. But I'm not. So I won't.

Collins has, of course, vigorously denied that anything like the conversation the certain blogger whom we don't name describes in his email took place. He's also recanted a bit, saying that he was simply "talking up a big game" in the email, and that "[e]mbellished is a good word. It's better than a lie, isn't it?" And over on Kiwiblog, David Farrar has also suggested that the certain blogger whom we don't name should be viewed as an unreliable narrator by drawing attention to what the same email claims about his links to the much-derided and vilified "MSM".

The email stated that:

I am maintaining daily communications with Jared Savage at the Herald and he is passing information directly to me that the Herald can’t run and so are feeding me to run on the blog.

DPF responds to this by asking:

Now let me say again that what Cam says in an e-mail is his interpretation of events. I regard Jared Savage as an excellent investigative reporter. But the e-mail does lead to questions being asked. How is media giving Cam stories, different to a press secretary doing so?

I'll leave that last question to be answered by those with better and more experience-informed views on journalistic ethics (that's you, Tim). Because what is important is what DPF writes next.

Now again what Cam has written is his interpretation. It may not be the literal truth of what Jared was doing. But here’s the thing – you need to be consistent. If you accept everything in the e-mails written by Cam as the literal truth, then the NZ Herald was feeding stories to Whale Oil, which they could not run in their newspaper. If you do not accept those e-mails as the literal truth, then why would you accept the ones about interactions with people in National as the literal truth?

Is the Herald going to say that everything Cameron wrote about his dealings with us is incorrect, yet everything else is correct?

Good point! If that blogger whom we don't name was puffing himself up and lying about his links with the MSM, then why should we believe him about what he says Judith Collins said to him? And, by the same token, I assume that if it turns out that the blogger's account of his relationship with the MSM is accurate, then we ought to believe what he says about Judith Collins? If we are going to be consistent, of course.

Well then, we now have Jared Savage's account of his relationship with that blogger. And here's what he has to say:

At the same time, I received a few emails about what was happening inside the SFO office.

Most of it was flotsam and jetsam, interesting tidbits of unverified information or gossip which I decided against pursuing as angles.

I cut and pasted the content of some of those emails, to remove any possible identifying features, and forwarded them on to Slater. So information was shared, there was a bit of "horse trading", we talked about developments as the story rolled along.

Which appears to tally closely with what the certain blogger whom we don't name said about the relationship. Meaning that, if we're going to be consistent, shouldn't we accept what that this certain blogger wrote about his dealings with Judith Collins was "the literal truth"? If we're going to be consistent, that is.

Comments (14)

by Katharine Moody on August 30, 2014
Katharine Moody

Second mea culpa from Herald journos in as many days (first being Fisher .. yesterday wasn't it?). So, yeah, The Herald journos look to be as thick as thieves with the Nat friendly blogosphere (i.e., Cactus, DPF and he whom we don't name.. altho I can't quite determine why). Next up, will it be she whom I won't name, I wonder?

Really, The Herald looks very, very bad in all this, IMHO.

 

by Andrew Geddis on August 30, 2014
Andrew Geddis

@Kat,

[A]nd he whom we don't name.. altho I can't quite determine why

Because he reads this blog, it upsets him that he doesn't get his name used, and I think that is funny. Yes - I am that childish and petty a human being.

by Cam Slater on August 30, 2014
Cam Slater

Yes I do read and it doesn't upset me at all, I think it makes an otherwise intelligent man look like a petulant child.

It isn't just the NZ Herald Andrew...TV3, Radio Live, Fairfax and TVNZ...the Herald are just the ones squirming now.

When you and others including the journalists delighting in the breaches of my priovacy by an unamed illegal hacker you all forgot that you created a doubled edged sowrd..now Daivid Fisher, Fran O'sSullivan and Jared Savege have found that out...other journalists will too.

But it won't be me breaching their confidences...it will be the hacker you all defend as the great whistle blower.

You all enabled him, and continue to do so. 

by Andrew R on August 30, 2014
Andrew R

That email from the so-called blogger who we don't name also leads, in my mind, to questions about the real story behind Jared Savage getting the 11 year old Cunliffe letter. Was someone tipped off about what to ask for in an OIA? And TV 3 asking questions the day before.  I was going to say fishy, but better to just ask if it passes the sniff test.

by Andrew Geddis on August 30, 2014
Andrew Geddis

Yes I do read and it doesn't upset me at all, I think it makes an otherwise intelligent man look like a petulant child.

Well, as David Farrar intimates (and you yourself admit), you are a rather unreliable narrator prone to "embellishing" what you write. But thanks for taking the time to comment!

by Lee Churchman on August 31, 2014
Lee Churchman

You all enabled him, and continue to do so.

Weren't you publishing articles based on material taken from Matt Blomfield's (stolen) hard drive?

by Alan Ivory on August 31, 2014
Alan Ivory

In considering your "consistency" question at the end of your article, Andrew, I'm not sure that deciding one or other of Savage and Collins is telling the truth, ie that X blogger is therefore telling the truth also on that issue, requires me to decide the other of Savage and Collins is also telling the truth. 

Deciding either Savage or Collins is telling the truth is only one factor in deciding whether the other is telling the truth. There are other factors such as the known relationships between each party and X blogger.

The disclosed relationship between Savage and X blogger (and we have to rely at present on Savage's disclosures so there's a bootstraps quality to that evidence) is quite different from the known relationship between Collins and X blogger.

The known track records of those relationships are also quite different.

These two factors IMHO might permit believing Savage and disbelieving Collins. I would see any consequence of thereby "believing" X blogger on these matters as coincidental, ie his statements would carry no weight in deciding what to believe.

 

by william blake on August 31, 2014
william blake

Given the classical tone of the post, I think HWWBN is mistaking nemesis for petulance.

by Nick Gibbs on August 31, 2014
Nick Gibbs

we talked about developments as the story rolled along.

That sound innocuous but Whale (sorry can't bothered with the naming meme) likes to see himself as a director not an observer of developments. Did Jared join Whale in trying to steer the narrative in a particular direction? One that suited the story the Herald was trying to tell. Because the lesson in all this is lie down this whales get up smelling fishy.

by Cam Slater on August 31, 2014
Cam Slater

lee, Matt Blomfield's hard drive was not stolen and three police investigations prove that, the fact that Matthew Blomfield still claims thi in affidavits is now a matter of perjury...which the iPCA confirmed.

by Joronda on August 31, 2014
Joronda

The Dirty Poly-ticking should be put aside to after the Sept 20 Election to be sorted by the Courts - huge numbers of people have missed out on knowing what Opposition Parties are offering.  Few people know much about David Cunliffe who spent 30 months trying to over-turn a Mandate for National to sell 49% of the shares in State Owned Enterprises - and suddenly he woke up to the realisation that he had only 6 months left to tell Kiwis who he is - big mistake on Cunliffe's part, and if there is no change of Govt, he can only blame himself.  30 months of wasted time/effort showing the unpleasant side of his personality - is it any wonder he polls so low?

by Joronda on August 31, 2014
Joronda

Who leaked the stolen e-mails is what most people want to know?

by Lee Churchman on August 31, 2014
Lee Churchman

lee, Matt Blomfield's hard drive was not stolen and three police investigations prove that, the fact that Matthew Blomfield still claims thi in affidavits is now a matter of perjury...which the iPCA confirmed.

I wasn't suggesting you stole it. Was it provided by someone who legitimately owned it and its contents?

And what do you have against this guy anyway? What exactly did he do?

 

by Siena Denton on August 31, 2014
Siena Denton

I cannot believe I am about to type this, but here goes.

In this particular issue and only this issue...

I believe Judith Collins and the unnamed so-called friend who the former Minister of Justice is loyal to, should in my opinion unfriend that unnamed so-called friend.

That unnamed so-called friend has turned out to be nothing but a big blowhard of wind, "embellishment" has cost whom the unnamed one calls "a mate", her job.

Both Feeley and that snake email fraudster Anita Killeen (who got away with that crime), the SFO is better off without them both.

 

 

 

 


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