Speech to the National Party Epsom electorate’s “newsmakers” breakfast, 29 June 2001
My first point is that I am not a newsmaker, as the title of these breakfasts suggests. I am a news watcher.
My interest is not in what or who is right or wrong but in what will stay the distance or fall by the wayside. Those who have political or economic agendas often think I am for or against them or their position — when actually I am testing them or their policies against the public’s judgment. I am, in the famous words of Sir Walter Nash, “neither for nor against”. I am a news watcher, as dispassionate as I can be, not a newsmaker, passionately arguing a case or pushing an interest. What I think or feel, even what I conclude after analysis is the “right” policy course or person for the job, is irrelevant to readers. What I can relevantly do is clarify for readers what the actors in the deadly political game think or feel.