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Open letter to the NZ Herald

Good Afternoon

With regard to Michael Bassett's deleted column, "Racism on a grand scale," I note that you have persisted in displaying a response to it from Kelly Jensen. He or she claims:

"To begin with, Dr Bassett takes issue with the new Aotearoa New Zealand history curriculum, in particular that only one serious Pākeha academic has been involved in its design.Which begs the question, are Māori academics not serious? "

What Dr Bassett actually wrote was: "I sought from the Ministry of Education details about who was designing the curriculum. Back came the names of a couple of black arm band school teachers and a collection of Maori radicals. There were a couple of academics, both Maori. No serious Pakeha historian in sight."

It is clear that the claim is a misrepresentation yet, by removing the original text, you have allowed it to go unchallenged. Furthermore you continue to propagate it.

Unlike the original complainant who caused you to remove Dr Bassett's article, I am not going to threaten to take you to the Press Council simply because I disagree with views you have published. You have enough problems just trying to stay afloat.

At Bassett's site you can see the level of support he garners. Peter Williams traversed this business yesterday on his talk programme and again support was overwhelmingly in Bassett's corner. Even Chris Trotter has waded into the issue writing:

Have Granny’s readers really become “wokesters”?

Of course they haven’t! So how does Currie expect them to react to the news that the contributions of a respected conservative historian, commentator, and former senior cabinet minister, have been banned for expressing the view that: “All things derived from Europe, except our creature comforts, must be set aside as we are expected to embrace all things Maori. It won’t be long before the woke who are driving all of this insist on officially changing our country’s name.'

But that is not the point.

The point is the editorial bias displayed by upholding an unknown letter-writer's freedom of speech, but not Dr Bassett's, is against your own code of ethics which states,

"Balance - In areas of controversy or disagreement, a fair voice will be given to opposing views." A "fair voice" would be more than one.


4,105 views64 comments


I wish to register my support for Michael Bassett, and my abhorrence at the Herald's actions. End of missive.


In a similar vein, here is my letter to Shayne Currie, which remains unanswered so far:

Dear Mr Currie,

There are lots of things spoken and written in your columns by Maori that annoy and even offend me, but in the spirit of korero I mutter “meh” and move on. But I abhor your decision to remove, without any explanation, an opinion piece by Dr Michael Bassett, a highly respected historian and former minister of government, because it expresses an alternative point of view and one that, I suspect, would elicit sympathy with and even approval of a good many of your readers; it is self-righteous censorship of the most egregious kind. There are people who are frightened by Maorificatio…


I suspect your view is the hidden majority's view too. MikeNZ


Octavian Augustus
Octavian Augustus
Mar 11, 2021

If the Herald wasn't being propped up by the taxpayer, it would fold in a few weeks. I think that tells us what the majority of people think of their delusional worldview and content.


Mar 11, 2021

I support the views you have expressed so eloquently!

Tony Dalby

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