Thursday, February 18, 2010

Love Radio NZ? Well cough up...

The Government is putting pressure on Radio NZ so that taxpayers wont be forced to pay for it so much. There is plenty of potential to do this. The ridiculous introduction of FM simulcasting should end for starters, setting free those frequencies for those willing to pay for it.

The NZ Herald reports that Labour Deputy Leader Annette King says " it would be like living in a Third World country if National Radio had to shut down between midnight and 6am"

Really Annette? I didn't know the UK was a third world country. The UK equivalent of National Radio is BBC Radio 4, which between 1am and 6am closes down and simply carries the BBC World Service. Better yet given the time difference, National Radio could simulcast Radio 4, or the World Radio Network.

However, this is all fiddling beyond the real point.

It's all very well for Helen Clark, who is barely a taxpayer in New Zealand (and not at all one in New York excluding local sales taxes), to defend Radio NZ. However, for the likes of Clark, King and the irascible Sue Kedgley to make a difference there is only one moral option.

Use your own money and donate to Radio NZ.

Why should anyone else be forced to pay for the broadcaster? Radio is not a "public good", and given that 85% of radio listening is not done with Radio NZ, then is this not simply one of the most explicit forms of elitism that is propagated by the left?

The view would be that Radio NZ is "good for you", which begs the question that if this is true, then 4 out of 5 members of the public disagree, or are stupid. Which justifies making them pay for the remaining 1.

Now I'm not going to pass judgment on Radio NZ myself, since I did use to listen to it regularly in NZ. I might even be willing to pay for it, if it rid itself of its inherently statist bias (how many panels does it have on shows that include nobody who believes in LESS government?).

However, the answer to all those who may bleat about Radio NZ is this. National isn't planning on removing the state tit from your favourite radio station, but if you think it is underfunded then dig into your own pockets and start making regular contributions.

If you wont do that, then why is it moral to make everyone pay for something a small fraction actually use or appreciate? Or is it just because it happens to correspond with your world view that government should exist to spread information and entertainment?


Anonymous said...

Close it down. I gave up listening to it years ago as it seemed to primarily cater to pretentious lefties who relish state-owned purveyors of snobbish crap!


Anonymous said...

just to be an annoying grammar nazi...