Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Video Of The Day: Losing It Live

Sigh. Sometimes you don't know whether to laugh or cry at the state of political debate on the electronic media.

See following clip from ARY's "11th Hour" programme from yesterday with host Waseem Badami (thanks to Akhtar Rind for bringing it to our notice). The programme was ostensibly innocuously about 'What good news could the government give the public in the current dire scenario?' The first comment was solicited from well known columnist and television host Hasan Nisar, who decided to proclaim that no good news could come until the current political elite was not "totally eliminated." According to him, the current lot of politicians were all "robbers and dacoits" who were "sucking the blood of the people" and the people themselves were the "biggest villains" for bringing them into power in the first place. Of course it all went downhill from there. The PPP's Punjab president, Imtiaz Safdar Warraich, who spoke next, was remarkably restrained in his response, saying smartly that no sensible person would like to respond to such slander and he wanted to be counted among the ranks of sensible people. However, the PMLN's Senator Mushahidullah did take the bait. And this is what then happened:



If you would like to watch the full context of this exchange, you can do so here.

Hasan Nisar has made a name for himself as a frank and forthright political commentator in Jang. And I have to admit that I do often find even his rants about politics a refreshing change from the mealy-mouthed hypocrisy that generally clutters the op-ed pages of Urdu papers. But having watched this exchange, I have absolutely no qualms in saying that Nisar was egregiously in the wrong here. Not only in the shameful way he chose his words on live television but also in terms of his politics. Criticizing the trappings and non-representational character of what he terms "pseudo-democracy" is one thing. But what he basically said was no different from the line of social elites and autocrats: that the people really don't know what's good for them and only they themselves are the repositories of all wisdom. He should offer an immediate apology.

Incidentally, kudos to Waseem Badami for keeping his wits about him even in the midst of mayhem and managing to pull back the programme from the brink of collapse. It's not easy to deal with such unexpectedly virulent behaviour on live television.

Meanwhile if you thought that was bad, this is what happened on Express News' "Kal Tak" programme hosted by Javed Chaudhry on March 29 (thanks to Shahid Saeed and @fraz_lsf for pointing it out). Watch the end as Talal Bugti begins his 'conversation':



Incredible.

23 comments:

Gotham3 said...

hassan nisar is a good columnist but he has a superiority complex . He is rude even with his friends

Anonymous said...

I agree with Gotham. And I have noticed how Mr. Nisar has gone downhill. He now sounds more like a pro-military beardless Jamaati munda than anything else.

His columns too have become riddled with the most right-wing cliches. What a massive dissapointment this guy has turned out to be. Yup, Geo/Jang certainly gives bull wings. :)


Can you believe, Nisar was a leftist student. You should also find a clip of his pretentious show on Geo called Chorahya in which he went on and one praising military rule. :P

Anonymous said...

And also remember he has long been the biggest cheerleader of the kill- them-all, hang-them-all (but only with fauji support) MQM in the Punjab. Doesn't that explain everything?

Ayesha said...

Never liked Hasan Nisar or his analysis. He's always on the extreme end. Can't keep his cool or emotions under control. This was perhaps the limit he could touch on live TV.

Poor Niazi! I recall once he got a shoe thrashing from the mob. This time he was verbally abused. Everything happens in drawing room meetings. But live TV is a different domain. It's sad to hear such things on our poli-talk-shows.

Preachy said...

Hasan Nisar is an arrogant and pretentious person. moreover, he loves dictatorship. you need to watch his video where he praises Musharaf and another where he praises the role of Jamiat in academia. he wants some special kind of environment for his women. probably, only four walls of home.
to be honest, i think he is a moron who has has a beard in the stomach.

Chaudhary said...

what so ever..Hassan Nisar has the courage to speak truth. There are very few in this society who can speak truth. There are many sections of society which feel that what Hassan Nisar is saying is actually their true representation. In this video they got more personal. I would agree this was beyond limits and they got too much personal but it doesn't mean that Hassan Nisar is always wrong

Anonymous said...

Hassan Nisar has always been against the political class and has favoured the military. He even whips up a couplet or two from Iqbal (aka God himself?) that talks about how evil democracy is.

The only political party he is in favour of is the MQM, which, by all rational and honest accounts, isn't really a political party, is it?

And yeah, for all his diatribes against the mullahs, he has one hell of a paet mein darrhi.

Rahl said...

commentators haven't u seen the talal bugti clip. have these wiseasses forgotten basic courtesy, that too on live tv? ridiculous.

beyond said...

i couldnt believe my ears when husband was playing that video on his iphone.may be i have been out of pakistan for too long(its been 8 yrs)but i dont remember such non sense being uttered EVER on live tv,heck any tv.wow just wow.

Ali said...

Hassan Nisar is an idiot. I think he should apologize and admit to the people that he was drunk that's why he behaved like this.

observer said...

someone please show these clips to Afridi, may be this will cure him of his 'our media is 100 times better' and 'enlarged heart' syndrome.
Such are the perils of live Telecast.

Hafsa said...

Note on Javed Chaudhry's clip: the shenanigans of these talk show hosts are so not in synch with the rest of the (civilized) world. Instead of a policy debate with solid facts, they try their best to create a Pakistani equivalent of a Roman arena

Anonymous said...

Cafe pyala, please write a piece on Express Tribune's anniversary. Their articles in the supplement were extremely childish, especially by the city editor who 'cleans mess of her 10 children.'

And yes, a piece is also required on the new look of Daily Dawn.

Athar Shah said...

@ anon The new look of Dawn is welcoming and refreshing. Expect more changes in the near future.

As for the Express Tribune, we should celebrate it's first anniversary as it has topped the WTF headlines column of Cafe Pyala, and has given us a chance to laugh on its absolutely gibberish and senseless stories. Thumbs up tribune!

Anonymous said...

From where did ET bashing and Dawn liking come in the middle of Hasan Nisar?

Anonymous said...

this is utterly hilarious! best laugh i've had in a while.

jai said...

how can they talk like that.....

AI said...

This is all because on unbridled access of live television. The participants are not contracted to appear in programs and dont follow any decorum. THere should be proper contracts and the participants should be paid for their participation. Otherwise this will only get worse

sarfraz Dewsbury said...

Hassan nisar and bugti both should be banned on television not because of their views but of their big mouths.....absolutely unacceptable and disgusting....only filthy brains utter filth especially in public or on live channels.

Anonymous said...

Hassan Nisar has only spoken the truth. although he handled it pretty poorly, as I believe he should not have lowered himself using insults. However, Hassan Nisar is right in cursing the politicians and the jahel awam who voted them in. Before putting that ballot in, people should have given a thought to the fact that a gunda like Zardari could become president and sully the country's name. Throughout the world, every nation is aware of who is running Pakistan, "Mr. 10%".

Did people not consider that these same "lootmar dacoits" would only rob the treasury again once put in power? Did people actually believe that they would solve loadshedding? The only thing PPP has done is destroy the economy of what was the third fastest growing nation in Asia, in terms of economic growth. The only economic policy PPP has in place is to borrow more money from the IMF and WB.

It is true, the Pakistani people don't know what is good for them. That is why they continue to elect these same thugs back into power. Do not bother saying that democracy will eventually "weed out" the problems. I must remind that we first elected the same corrupt governments in succession two or three times back to back. Feudal lords will continue to exercise their domination on their 1.8 million jahel slaves and PPP will continue to win votes.

A thousand curses upon those who voted these thugs in power and will continue to do so for decades to come. Prepare yourself for a new "Bhutto-Zardari" dynasty to rule us.

Anonymous said...

I suspect that some of these "talk shows" tolerate if not promote such verbal confrontations to keep their viewers sufficiently engaged lest they switch channels. It is all about ratings and survival in the overcrowded world of Pakistan's electronic media. Occasionally this strategy backfires as these two clips demonstrate.

Hassan Nissar has proven to be his own greatest enemy. His abusive unrestrained public behavior raises some troubling questions about his present mental health. My sympathies are with the ordinary awam of Pakistan which has been lied to and deceived for the past 64 years. To call them bewaqoof is indeed adding insult to injury. Sadly, there is truth here however troubling.

Pekhawaray said...

I disagree with hasan nisar that awam are stupid. they are not, they very well know that they are oppressed but they can't afford confrontation, they resist in a non-confrontational manner. do you think that they really believe that politicians work for awam. ask anyone except the political workers and prepare yourself for a rant against politicians. confrontation not only destroys poor's economy it brings more oppression. by the way i am summarizing James Scott who wrote his influential book "weapons of the week"

Pekhawaray said...

sorry. i meant "weapon of the Weak"