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Covert surveillance should not be allowed retrospectively

Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, September 27th, 2011 - 55 comments
Categories: law, national, police, same old national - Tags: , , ,

mickysavage at Waitakere News blog*  has an analysis of the legal and unconstitutional implications of the Nationals dubious plan to override the courts with poor kneejerk legislation.

The urgent legislation the Government is rolling out in response to the Supreme Court decision in Hamed is looking like a well-choreographed dance.  Two months before the election the Government is planning to ram through legislation that is constitutionally abhorrent and trying to put Labour in a position where it has no choice but to oppose.  Labour is intending to put up an alternative bill.  But I am sure that it will not succeed and I am reasonably certain that the Government will ensure that its bill has retrospective effect no matter what the damage to our constitution.

There are all sorts of constitutional principles at play here.  Courts determine the law, and if Parliament does not agree with a Court’s interpretation of the law then it has the option to change the law through legislation.  By convention however it does not change the law with retrospective effect.  Citizens need to have the benefit of certainty of the law.  Changes should be gradual and subject to intense scrutiny with the ability of citizens to comment.  And once a citizen is charged it is almost unheard of for Parliament to change the rules.  By doing so it may effectively be legislating to send citizens to jail without the benefit of the rule of law applying and in constitutional terms this is the sort of thing you would expect from modern day Fiji or Zimbabwe, not New Zealand.

It is accepted that where well-settled law is found to be defective or there is a mistake then retrospective legislation may be appropriate. This is why the Government has consistently said that its bill is just to “preserve the common law prior to the Supreme Court decision”.  If this is not the case then retrospective legislation cannot be justified.

So what was the common law before the Supreme Court decision?  A distinction needs to be made between “over the fence” surveillance where the filming occurs from a place where there is authority for the camera to be, for instance in a public place or from property where the owner or occupier has given specific permission, and filming where a trespass has to occur for the camera to be put in place.

There are three decisions, Gardiner (CA239/97), Fraser (CA19/97) and the Court of Appeal’s consideration of Hamed itself. Gardiner and Fraser both involved filming from a place where a trespass did not occur. In each case the Court took the view that unless police actions in undertaking video surveillance are prohibited by statute or otherwise constitute an actionable wrong such as trespass, they are lawful at common law. Gardiner and Fraser involved filming that was considered not to be too intrusive and in both cases the evidence obtained was admitted.

The Court of Appeal when considering Hamed thought that the filming was authorised by the search warrants that were issued and that there was no difficulty in allowing the evidence to be produced.  This was overruled by all of the members of the Supreme Court on appeal.

So none of the cases relied on ruled that evidence obtained through covert surveillance that involved a trespass was admissible.  In two cases no trespass occurred, in the third it was thought the search warrant provided authority for the filming.

When you add the recommendations of the Law Commission in 2007and the fact that the Search and Surveillance Bill introduced two years ago was to address the problems identified in the Commission’s report you really have to question the contention that the law was settled.

The Supreme Court commented on this and formed a totally different view.

Chief Justice Elias said “I regard it as a significantly exacerbating factor that the film surveillance was undertaken deliberately without legal authority, in the knowledge that there was no lawful investigatory technique available to be used.”  Further, “[i]n circumstances where the police officer in charge of the inquiry knew that there was no authority to be obtained for such filmed surveillance, the deliberate unlawfulness of the police conduct in the covert filming, maintained over many entries and over a period of some 10 months, is destructive of an effective and credible system of justice.”

Justice Blanchard more charitably said “[e]ven taking the view most favourable to them, the police seem to have been prepared over and over to run the risk of acting in breach of the law. They did not obtain legal advice and should have done so.”  He further said, “… The police understood that the warrants did not authorise the video surveillance and that their conduct in relation to the video surveillance might well be legally questionable. Winkelmann J [in the High Court] made a finding that the police continued to use surveillance cameras with the knowledge, at a senior level at least, that they had no lawful authority to do so.”

So we seem to be heading to a constitutional crisis where the Government is prepared to advance an argument that the Supreme Court has ruled against to justify action that in constitutional terms is appalling.   The Government’s justification, that the law was settled, was not accepted by the Supreme Court.  If this legislation is passed we are in for an interesting time.

* lprent: No it is not true mickey spends all of his blogging time here – he has his own site. And yes we know he was a candidate to be a Labour candidate. So those are off the discussion table in this post because I do tend to find such predictable attempts at diversion. Getting into the governments preemptive lawmaking, I hereby announce that people trying such simple diversions then will be presumed to have read this notice cunningly placed at the bottom of the post in small letters to catch people speeding past the post content without reading it. I wish to introduce them to the pleasures of a wee ban for utterly predictable stupidity. It doesn’t quite get to the level of spending four years in court because of an unlawful act by the police. But it does have the same style of arbitary unfairness

55 comments on “Covert surveillance should not be allowed retrospectively”

  1. queenstfarmer 1

    Boo hoo. There is nothing constitutionally repugnant about remedying a newly-promulgated technicality to allow video evidence of serious crime to be put before a Court.

    What is consitutionally repugnant was Labour retrospectively legalising its own unlawful activities a few years ago, which included the oh-so-convenient effect of halting a court case taken against its leader.

    Anyway it’s all a bit academic – the voters will I’m sure have their views.

    • Blighty 1.1

      “a newly-promulgated technicality”

      The court didn’t change the law. What the Police were doing was always illegal and they’ve known it since at least 2007.

      • ianmac 1.1.1

        Interesting that Findlayson was annoyed that Red Alert had published the proposed Bill last week. In spite of the Select Committee sitting from 9am Wednesday he is very reluctant to release the new draft before then, – incase it is released for public scrutiny. What!

      • queenstfarmer 1.1.2

        The court didn’t change the law

        I know, and it shouldn’t. As I said, it promulgated (or enunciated) the law. It hadn’t ruled on exactly this issue before.

        What the Police were doing was always illegal and they’ve known it since at least 2007

        That’s one view. The majority view (and that stated by the police) was that they knew there was no express authorisation, but just because there isn’t a law authorising something doesn’t of itself make it illegal.

    • Bored 1.2

      QSFarmer…what the fuck is the point of having a law if the government can change it retrospectively? It is sort of “we agree that what you were doing yesterday was legal BUT for some daft reason we have decided to make it illegal yesterday. Therefore you are now a criminal….”

      Howzabout I get elected and decide that the tax rates should have been much higher during Nacts reign, therefore i am going to retrospectively change them and charge you excessive back taxes? How would you like that?

      • queenstfarmer 1.2.1

        Ah, but the Govt isn’t making something legal, illegal. If anything it is the opposite. All the law will do is allow existing video evidence of serious crimes to be put before a court (something which Labour actually does supports).

        • Lanthanide 1.2.1.1

          “All the law will do is allow existing video evidence of serious crimes to be put before a court (something which Labour actually does supports).”

          They can already do that anyway. The court gets to choose on a case by case basis whether to permit such evidence.

          • queenstfarmer 1.2.1.1.1

            Yes I suppose the Court has a discretion, but I wouldn’t think it can disregard relevant evidence without good reason.

            If the video evidence was obtained illegally, that would be good reason to disregard it. However, if the law says it wasn’t obtained illegally, and there is no other legal reason for disregarding it, then it would be allowed (though in a jury-trial criminal matter, how much weight it is given, if any, is the jury’s call).

            • Joanne 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Simple really, if the evidence was obtained illegally then it should be deemed innadmisssable. Further, the police have been engaged in illegal activity for years, so what do we do? Instead of investigating the illegal activities of the police, we change the law to make those activities and many more intrusive ones legal. No wonder at all that respect for the law and police is at an all time low and falling. The police deserve to be investigated and charged over breaking the law, not have their illegal activities legalized. what a crock of shit this government are.

              • queenstfarmer

                So you want the police charged? But they haven’t committed any crime. Just because their videotaping of actual (alleged) criminal activity was unlawful, doesn’t mean it’s a crime.

                If you are genuinely interested in prosecuting crime, a good start would be to put the video tape evidence before juries.

                • Bored

                  They may have committed other crimes in the process such as trespassing. Get it right.

                  • queenstfarmer

                    Trespass isn’t a crime (unless you refuse to leave when asked, or breach a trespass notice, etc). Get it right.

                    • Bored

                      From the NZ Police website…..
                      # Trespassing is entering someone’s private property or place of work without permission.
                      # Trespassing is a crime.
                      Get it right…

                    • queenstfarmer

                      ^ I am right, you are wrong – as usual. Seems to be a habit of yours.

                      Being found on property with intent to commit an offence is a crime. Simple trespass after the fact (see the “unless” in my previous comment), which you suggest as a “crime” the police might have committed, is not a crime.

                      How about instead of quoting the police website, you quote the relevant law. If you want me to prove you further wrong, let me know and I will quote it for you.

                    • Qsf you should know better.  You do not have to commit a crime to act unlawfully …

                    • queenstfarmer

                      ^ micky, I don’t believe I said anything to the contrary, and I agree. Actually that’s the point I was making in response to Susan’s, and the Bored’s, suggestions that the police’s unlawful videotaping was a crime.

                      Unlawful, yes (unless retrospectively fixed up). Criminal, no.

                • Pascal's bookie

                  Well they may not have committed anything covered by the crimes act, but there are possibly trespass issues, and, far more likely, Privacy Act and BORA issues. These need to be investigated. The supreme court found that the police were either deliberately or reclessly using unlawful techniques. That is not acceptable, surely?

                  Dean Knight asks relevant questions here:

                  http://www.laws179.co.nz/2011/09/covert-surveillance-some-more-musings.html

                  Updating his first question, the Attorney General has not issued any BORA Section 7 reports with this bill. That is, he does not think that retrospectively making unlawful surveillance lawful, and overturning a Supreme Court ruling finding such, is in any way inconsistent with the Bill of Rights Act. So it’s good to know what he thinks about about citizens having recourse to the courts when dealing with the states actions I suppose.

                  If you are genuinely interested in prosecuting crime, a good start would be to put the video tape evidence before juries.

                  Genuine question: Do you think it would be OK for the police to just go around getting evidence any old how, without regard to the law, and prosecuting law breaches that they discover?

                  • queenstfarmer

                    Privacy Act and BORA issues

                    Yes they could get a ticking off for something done there. I expect they would take it on a chin – it wouldn’t affect their evidence.

                    Genuine question: Do you think it would be OK for the police to just go around getting evidence any old how, without regard to the law, and prosecuting law breaches that they discover?

                    No, not at all. It is clear this is a “one off” – the issues with the law have been known, and a new law (which is likely to be widely supported) coming in soon will allow this surveillance anyway. So it would be silly, IMHO, to scrap evidence of what the police say is serious offending (and I don’t think they would make that up, because the evidence will become public if it goes to trial), and then wait for the same criminal activity to be carried out again (with people possibly even being killed etc) just because of what is really a timing issue.

                    • Qsf

                      the issues with the law have been known

                      This is the point.  The Government is pretending that the issues are not known and the Supreme Court decision is a surprise.  Therefore they can make the legislation retrospective. 

                      If the issues have been known (I agree with you) then there is no way that the legislation should apply to current trials.

                      So they could put up a patch up bill for future trials but they want it to apply to past events.

                      Can’t you see the problem? 

                    • McFlock

                      If it’s a “one off”, then it wouldn’t affect any other case and the retrospective legislation would not be required.
                       
                      Don’t get me wrong, I am impressed by your attempt to minimise routine illegal evidence gathering by the police, but that does seem to be a flaw in your argument.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      The issues with the law have been known, as you say, and yet the unlawful surveillance has continued. 40-50 cases the PM says.

                      That’s a lot of, (to be charitable about it) “reckless” behavior on the part of the police. So it’s hard to call it ‘one off’. It’s a sustained pattern of either reckless or deliberate law breaking on the part of the police.

                      What the govt’s bill does is remove the barrier to this law breaking continuing. That’s the ‘fix’. Just let them go on acting unlawfully, giving no recourse to citizens, and if the police turn up anything then just let them use it. It gives the police the ability to go on fishing expeditions for the next year or until the new surveillance bill gets passed.

                      You keep talking about ‘serious crimes’. That’s already covered. Nobody will get away with serious crimes because of the SC’s ruling. That’s just dishonest scare-mongering and it would do you well to stop repeating it at this point. The worst that could happen is that evidence for minor crimes will be lost, (which may or may not lead to the charges being dropped) and there might be claims for compensation arising from the Police’s unlawful actions.

                      On an earlier point:

                      The majority view (and that stated by the police) was that they knew there was no express authorisation, but just because there isn’t a law authorising something doesn’t of itself make it illegal.

                      Dean Knight, again, demolished this argument a few days ago. Basically that only applies if you have a common law right to be doing the thing in question. So if it was filming from the street, they might be ok. But they weren’t. The filming involved trespass, and the state needs explicit authorisation to do that.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      The mentioned Dean Knight demolition of your talking point can be found here:

                      http://www.laws179.co.nz/2011/09/covert-surveillance-if-it-aint-unlawful.html#more

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      And I note with some amusement the regard you seem to hold the privacy act and BORA in.

                      Minor breaches of the crimes act? OMG pull out all the stops.

                      Acts protecting citizens from the state? Meh.

                      It starts with A, ends with n, and has horitar in the middle.

                    • queenstfarmer

                      ^ IRT all the above. I don’t think Mr Knight’s analysis “destroys” mine – it’s just a different opinion – and as I have already noted, at the end of the day it (the solution) isn’t really an academic exercise with a right or wrong answer (the debate is quite academic though), it’s a simple question of what is parliament going to pass – it’s realpolitik.

                      Because we don’t have a “super constitution” that puts any real limits on parliament here, they can do what they want. The academics can at least take comfort that they will have another half-hour’s worth of lecture material to talk about in future years.

                      Now, I actually think we should have an entrenched constitution (if we can put one together without setting of civil war!) that would limit Govt power and stop this kind of thing. Last time I ventured to suggest such things, it was attacked as a diabolical right-wing power grab, so I don’t know if there is any sort of consensus around this.

                      So yes, it is messy and no, in an ideal world we wouldn’t need messy retrospective legislation for anything, but the fact is currently we can do, it’s simple and clearly a “one off” (as the law is about to permanently enable it anyway), it is limited in scope (the evidence already collected), it doesn’t retrospectively make anything unlawful, and there is a clear benefit (prosecuting crims caught on tape).

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Completely unresponsive to any of the points raised. Colour me ‘unsurprised’ I guess.

        • Bored 1.2.1.2

          Entirely the opposite: what the law attempts to do is make illegal surveyance legal by backdating, thereby making evidence admissable. Dont dress it up.

        • Bored 1.2.1.3

          Dont confuse what is being attempted here with the process QSF, nor the principle. Ends do not justify means.

    • burt 1.3

      queenstfarmer

      Boo hoo. There is nothing constitutionally repugnant about remedying a newly-promulgated technicality to allow video evidence of serious crime to be put before a Court.

      And as you note, Labour did it for their own best interests. But… none of that is really the current point. Mickysavage has put together a compelling case with sufficient integrity to say – YES!, mickysavage is right. It’s constitutionally repugnant and it’s National doing it !

      So for sure it’s hilarious to see a hardened defender of the party line run a valid issue up the flag pole when you know they defended their own party sweeping it under the rug just a few years back.

      But, even knowing mickysavage thinks its OK when Labour do it, I still agree with him its abhorrent when National do it.

      [note to self: blogs where I can write "retrospective" in my comments is likely to increase]

      [lprent: You are welcome to use it here. Others are also welcome to (ummm) mock it. ]

      • mickysavage 1.3.1

        I can advance all sorts of arguments Burt but I know that I will not persuade you.  So tell me, how do you feel about National doing it, and in the criminal law area where outcomes may be affected part way through a trial?

        • burt 1.3.1.1

          Micky,

          The key difference that I see (without this legislation having even been introduced into the house yet) is that National are not going to kill a standing court case against John Key and is not validating “anything” National did to win an election.

          Other than that, it seems way wrong especially given there has been a warning about continuing with status quo practice.

      • mickysavage 1.3.2

        Burt

        Further to my previous comment you might want to read the analysis by Law Professor Dean Knight.  Feel free to argue with his analysis.  For me all I could do is offer hopelessly partisan arguments. 

        • burt 1.3.2.1

          I do wonder if Dean Knight was across the detail that Labour had been warned by the Chief Electoral Officer (David Henry) that the pledge card spending would be considered electioneering prior to lodging it for approval under the old “It’s how we have always done it” chestnut.

  2. seeker 2

    lprent, brilliant idea to simulate the “same style of arbitrary unfairness” used by the police :

    ” deliberate unlawfulness of the police conduct in the covert filming, maintained over many entries and over a period of some 10 months, is destructive of an effective and credible system of justice.”

    It also simulates the often arbitrary style of government that John Key (and his buddies?) indulge in e.g.Tuhoe announcement, Ecan, Supercity, Paula Bennett ignoring the privacy laws for her own ends and her actions still being pronounced “honourable” by our esteemed prime minister and now possibly unjust retrospective legislation.

    Simulation can be a very powerful educational tool.

    Let’s hope any RWNJ’s who fall foul of this learn something from their small experience, of the danger and suffering they and the people of this country can and, often do, encounter from the actions of an ignorant,unjust,self serving government.

  3. ianmac 3

    Red Alert from Charles just now Tuesday about 4ish.
    Chris Finlayson has changed his Urewera fix it bill, but he won’t say when he will make it publicly available. He didn’t seek leave to table it in the House today, despite the fact that people are expected to speak to it in select committee in less than 20 hours time. Great to see his commitment to democracy on show.
    http://blog.labour.org.nz/index.php/2011/09/27/surveillance-bill-update-v/

  4. insider 4

    This is hardly a constitutional crisis. The future of a govt doesn’t depend on it, nor is it making illegal that which was legal, so there is no issue re citizens having certainty of the law. Citizens engaged in illegal conspiracies are still doing so illegally; it’s just the chance of them being prosecuted that will change (or not dependign on your view).

    Five different SC judges had five different interpretations of the law even if they came to similar conclusions in some areas, which shows how complex the issues were. to contrast the views of Elias, McGrath said : “In the absence of specific legislation, the officer responsible for management of the investigation said it was decided that this was the best and most reasonable way to proceed. That was understandable given that there was no judicial decision that clearly indicated when video surveillance would be unlawful. In R v Gardiner the Court of Appeal pointed out that ―[t]here is no mechanism in the law requiring or enabling the authorisation of video surveillance. The law’s requirements have been clarified only by this Court’s judgment.”

    • But Insider do you agree with the changes being retrospective?

      Generally this should only happen to repair a legislative hole or to return the law to what was thought to be a settled position after a decision that holds otherwise. Otherwise legislation should not be retrospective.

      The “crisis” that I see is that the Attorney General is advancing as a ground for the retrospective change in law that which the Supreme Court Justices have expressly ruled against. Elias said the Police knew they did not have legal authority, Blanchard said they continuously ran a risk and that they did not take legal advice, McGrath obviously thought the power’s existence was uncertain and only resolved by the Court’s decision. It is very clear that the Judges disagree with the Attorney General. They do not agree that there is justification for exercising extraordinary powers to change the law retrospectively.

      The relationship between the Court and Parliament will not be the same if this bill is passed retrospectively. You can bet there will be an appeal to test the legislation presuming it is passed in the proposed form and how is the Court then going to handle this?

      • insider 4.1.1

        I have no problem with retrospectivity but understand why some do. To me it is retaining what was considered an acceptable form of surveillance until the SC decision, and rectifying a hole in legislation. I don’t think the impact is oppressive or unduly deprives people of rights – did many in the public really think that this was not lawful or that the police should not have access to such techniques? So while it may outrage some lawyers and academics and activists, I suspect the wider public would shrug their shoulders and say it was ridiculous the police couldn’t do it in the first place.

        And to say the relationship between the Court and Parliament will not be the same is I think hyperbole – the courts and Parliament have been undermining each other for centuries.

      • queenstfarmer 4.1.2

        You can bet there will be an appeal to test the legislation … how is the Court then going to handle this?

        Very simply – the Court applies the law Parliament writes. There is really no more complex analysis needed than that – we currently have no “super constitution” that can strike down non-compliant laws (personally I think we should, though last time I started suggesting this, people here started attacking the idea as some type of diabolical RWNJ plot!).

        If the amending law is badly written (unlikely but possible, given that it is a temporary fix only) then there may be a loophole for a defence-friendly judge to wriggle through. But otherwise the Court simply applies the law.

      • Anne 4.1.3

        @ mickysavage.
        Did you watch Rodney Hide in the House this evening? His speech was superb. What an enigma of a man. Perhaps now he is leaving parliament, he feels free to say what he really believes.

        This issue is taking on the aura of a significant election issue.

        • mickysavage 4.1.3.1

          @Anne.  I heard him and it was the first speech he has given that I agreed with every word!  Will hopefully be on inthehouse soon.

        • mickysavage 4.1.3.2

          And here it is.

          Go Rodney!!  Great, great speech … 

          Best bit, “if we are to have law and order then the Police have to operate within the law”.

          • ianmac 4.1.3.2.1

            Yes. Bloody good speech. Covered the concerns of many. Be interesting to see if Act vote in favour of the Bill.

            • ianmac 4.1.3.2.1.1

              Come to think of it, National may have a problem. Since none of the sitting Act members will be there after the Election the MPs might have an option to stand/vote on Principle, without Key having any bribing chips or threats about their vote. “After the Election…….etc”

  5. Doesn’t National believe that NZ Police should follow the ‘Rule of Law’?

    New Zealand, as a ‘State Party’ signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, which states, in the preamble:

    “Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law.”

    http://www.answers.com/topic/universal-declaration-of-human-rights

    What is the ‘Rule of Law’?

    “Rule according to law; rule under law; or rule according to a higher law.
    The rule of law is an ambiguous term that can mean different things in different contexts. In one context the term means rule according to law.

    No individual can be ordered by the government to pay civil damages or suffer criminal punishment except in strict accordance with well-established and clearly defined laws and procedures.

    In a second context the term means rule under law.

    No branch of government is above the law, and no public official may act arbitrarily or unilaterally outside the law.

    In a third context the term means rule according to a higher law.

    No written law may be enforced by the government unless it conforms with certain unwritten, universal principles of fairness, morality, and justice that transcend human legal systems.”

    http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Rule+of+Law,+the

    If there is one group of people who citizens should expect to follow the ‘RULE OF LAW’ – then surely that is the Police?

    It is NOT ok in a supposedly ‘free and democratic’ society – for NZ Police to act unlawfully – then get the Government to pass retrospective legislation to effectively legitimise their unlawful behaviour.

    If the Police evidence was unlawfully obtained then it should not be allowed to be used.

    If ‘ignorance of the law is no excuse’ – then surely that must equally apply to Police?

    “In handing down the Supreme Court decision, the Chief Justice said that the police actions were “destructive of an effective and credible system of justice “. A hasty law change that hands a blank cheque to the police is not the way to repair the damage done.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10754138

    Remember this fundamental principle of natural justice in this country?

    The presumption of innocence until PROVEN guilty?

    At the time that the Urewera 18 were being (unlawfully) surveilled, they had not been charged – let alone convicted of any crime.

    Being arrested and charged with an offence – does not make a person guilty.

    Remember, 12 people were arrested during the 15 October 2007 raids under the Terrorism Suppression Act.

    Were they proven to be ‘terrorists’?

    No.

    After nearly four years, all charges have been dropped against 13 of the ‘Operation 8′ defendants.

    ( I have been arrested 22 times in attempting to defend and uphold the public’s right to ‘open, transparent and democratically accountable’ local government.

    Only one arrest out of 22 led to a conviction – for trespass at arguably the most public of all public buildings – the Auckland Town Hall at a time it was open to the public.

    This is now the subject of a complaint to the United Nations Human Rights Committee – having exhausted all legal channels in New Zealand).

    People cannot be classified as ‘bad guys’ who have acted unlawfully, until their alleged ‘bad guy’ unlawful actions are actually PROVEN in Court.

    If the Police are going to act unlawfully in trying to get a conviction – then what is the difference between them and the alleged ‘bad guys’?

    What sort of example is this to citizens of New Zealand?

    The Police act unlawfully, and the Supreme Court rules that they have acted unlawfully – then this National Government intervenes and tries to retrospectively legitimise their unlawful behaviour?

    How can the public have confidence in the NZ Police, Judges or the current NZ Government – if the ‘Rule of Law’ is not upheld and unlawful ‘bad behaviour’ is not only excused but retrospectively legitimised?

    If the law is seen to be inadequate, then surely the answer must be to go through proper lawful ‘due process’ in order to get the law changed – after a full consultation / select committee process.
    The voting public will soon see which political parties do in fact support the ‘Rule of Law’ by the upcoming votes on the Video Camera Surveillance (Temporary Measures) Bill.

    Penny Bright. Independent ‘Public Watchdog’ candidate for Epsom.

  6. Bored 6

    As a matter of the record I dont agree with making life easy for the cops or anybody just to help catch “criminals”. The state should have to have the onus on them to prove guilt and do so within the law. Then there is the bullshit one we hear about “if they were not doing something wrong they would have nothing to fear”…bollocks.

    On that note I am also highly offended that the state reserves the right to x-ray me and examine my belongings every time I fly…so far in 10 years of doing so we have not arrested or prevented one single Al Quaeda terror attack on domestic travel. Its an intrusion upon our rights as citizens, we are being surveyed to keep us passive, the state nibbles away at our freedoms in the name of protecting us. We need to tell them to feck off.

    • insider 6.1

      It could have deterred/prevented an attack – ‘We’ve had none therefore they’ve been deterred’

      • terryg 6.1.1

        not only that, its been 100% effective at preventing both Tiger and Vampire attacks. Nary a one since 9/11!

  7. When will the government learn that they are not judge and jury and that the Supreme Court are independent of the police and the government and that the Supreme Court is the highest court in NZ.

    Had the government legislated for the police to use video surveillance the Supreme Court would not have made the LEGAL decision that they made. Being behind the eight ball is incompetence at the very least.

    The police have stopped using video surveillance since the Supreme Court decision.

    Any outstanding cases need to be reviewed through the Supreme Court for a decision to be made on whether or not the video footage is allowed. When the police arrest someone they then make a decision to charge a person with an offence or not to charge them. No doubt the following applies:
    Has an offence been committed?
    Do the police have enough evidence to charge?

    The cops cannot just put a camera on private property and wait for a crime to occur.

    Policing no doubt has its frustrations e.g a hunch that a person is a rapist, murderer, but without legally obtained evidence there is NO case.

    When evidence is obtained unlawfully this is the making of a police state.

  8. Muzza 8

    @Insider. Absolute BS! You have no idea what you are talking about! People who are happy to handover my rights, freedoms, whatever you like to call them because you are a scared little , happy to be lied to sheep is disgusting.
    Im certain should this retrospective law come into effect we will see the same sort of attempt to bastardize the legal framework become the norm. This is dangerous territory, and if you can’t see that then ignorant is not strong enough a word.

    • insider 8.1

      You seem ignorant of the fact that This is nOt the first time we’ve had retrospective law enacted. Given that, it’s hard to understand the outraged statements that this is the end of our democracy as we know it. We had two in the last parliament alone, one of which had remarkably similar justifications and may have legalized soemthing that turned an election -been doing it that way for years, returning the law to what everyone thought it was, a procedural issue – the other directly affected the composition of parliament and involved a minister of the crown. Democracy didn’t end and I don’t think they have encouraged more retrospective laws. I don’t see this law as having the theoretical let alone actual effect you do, especially in light of the courts accepting such unlawful evidence and it never being considered a similar constitutional outrage.

    • insider 8.2

      Ps a really interesting article on retrspective/retroactive laws. makes the point that judges make retroactive laws all the time when they overturn accepted precedent.

      http://www.vuw.ac.nz/staff/dean_knight/Waldron.pdf

  9. Jim Nald 9

    Chris Finlayson. The Attorney General. The country’s top law officer. Bloody disgrace. Shame on you.

    Legal education was wasted on you.
    The university that awarded your law degree should retract the degree with immediate effect.
    The court that admitted you as a barrister and solicitor should retract the admission.

  10. For anyone wanting to make submissions the Bill is here.
     
    The contact details for the committee are
    Edward Siebert (Committee Clerk)
    edward.siebert@parliament.govt.nz
    DDI +64 4 817 9032
    Fax +64 4 499 0486

    You can ask how – if at all – the committee intends to receive public submissions. The majority on the committee may refuse to receive them but Charles Chauvel will argue that they should do so.
     
    Clare Curran has offered to try and table them.  Her email is clare.curran@parliament.govt.nz 
     
    I am certain that the Greens Graham Kennedy will also do his best.  He can be contacted at graham.kennedy@parliament.govt.nz

    EDIT: Thanks to an I/S tweet the Parliamentary website has just published details at http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/PB/SC/MakeSub/5/0/e/49SCJE_SCF_00DBHOH_BILL11056_1-Video-Camera-Surveillance-Temporary.htm

  11. On this issue, it seems that the MSM are not too keen to cover anti-Bill protests. Hiowever, an acquaintance of mine sent me his pictorial report on yesterday’s events…

    http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2011/10/02/1-october/

    Only Radio NZ featured a smallish article on their website.

    Meanwhile, the Dompost ran a story of 400 sailors marching through Wellington. Dear Leader would be pleased.

  12. From Stopthebill;

    “Urgent Action Alert – Stop the Video Camera Surveillance Bill!

    It is only days now until Parliament votes on the law that would legalise covert video surveillance by Police, Fisheries, SIS and Customs. This bill must be stopped! It is the most serious assault on our fundamental freedom and rights in our lifetime.

    We are asking everyone to take two minutes to email members of Parliament and tell them to vote ‘NO’ on the bill. It is likely to be voted on this Thursday (October 6).

    At present, the National party does not have the numbers to pass the bill. It only has the support of United Future. It needs 3 more votes – so we want to make sure that neither the Labour Party nor the ACT party support this dangerous bill from becoming law. The Green, Maori and Mana parties do not support the bill at all.

    Please email any member of parliament you like. We would certainly encourage in particular emails to

    ACT party

    Rodney Hide – rodney.hide@parliament.govt.nz

    John Boscowan – john.boscowan@parliament.govt.nz

    Roger Douglas – roger.douglas@parliament.govt.nz

    Hilary Calvert – hilary.calvert@parliament.govt.nz

    Heather Roy – heather.roy@parliament.govt.nz

    LABOUR

    Phil Goff – phil.goff@parliament.govt.nz

    Annette King – annette.king@parliament.govt.nz

    David Parker – david.parker@parliament.govt.nz

    Charles Chauvel – charles.chauvel@parliament.govt.nz

    Grant Robertson – grant.robertson@parliament.govt.nz

    David Cunliffe – david.cunliffe@parliament.govt.nz

    Ruth Dyson – ruth.dyson@parliament.govt.nz

    Clayton Cosgrove – clayton.cosgrove@parliament.govt.nz

    Maryan Street – maryan.street@parliament.govt.nz

    Trevor Mallard – trevor.mallard@parliament.govt.nz

    The most important thing to say is ‘VOTE NO ON THE VIDEO SURVEILLANCE BILL’. Other things you can say are:

    -It is an assault on the rule of law as it retrospectively legalises illegal police actions

    -It is an assault on the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure

    -It is an assault on the right to privacy

    -You don’t want any expansion of the power of the state to surveil people

    -The police and government have been misleading the public by saying that the bill will ‘restore the common law position’ – the police have never had the power to do trespassory video surveillance. The police knowingly broke the law and should be prosecuted.

    -The ONLY submission received in support of this law was from Police. All other submissions – including the Law Society, Criminal Bar, civil society organisations and hundred of individuals all opposed this bill.”

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    The next Labour-led Government will create a 21st century transport system for New Zealand that promotes the most efficient and sustainable combination of transport options, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Labour will rebalance the Government's transport spending away from...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Housing under National: the facts
    1.       House prices in Auckland Council valuations indicate Auckland house prices have gone up by one-third over the last three years. (Auckland Council) The average Auckland house price has gone up by nearly $225,000 since 2008, up over $75,000 in...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Labour irons out low income tax issue
    The increasing casualisation of work has led to many New Zealand families being disadvantaged through the tax they pay, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. "Many low paid workers are having to work two or three jobs to make ends meet...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Cornered Government comes out swinging
    The National Government is so desperate to keep its dead-in-the-water expert teachers policy alive, it has refused to rule out forcing schools to participate through legislation, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “John Key today attacked the Educational Institute for...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Pacific people continue to go backwards under National
    A report from Victoria University highlights the fact that Pacific people are continuing to go backwards under a National Government, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “The report shows the largest inequality increases were in smoking, obesity, tertiary...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Wellington transport plan needs to keep moving
    The failure of the Transport Agency to properly look at alternatives to the Basin Reserve flyover is not a good reason for further delays to improving transport in Wellington, Labour MPs Grant Robertson and Annette King say. “The Board of...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Labour’s focus on inequality, kids and better job prospects
    Tackling child poverty and removing barriers to people working part time to enhance their prospects of moving into a fulltime job are highlights of Labour’s Social Development policy. Releasing the policy today, spokesperson Sue Moroney said while part-time work was...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Political staff should give answers under oath
    The Inspector General of Security and Intelligence should use her full statutory powers to question witnesses under oath about the leak of SIS information, says Labour MP Phil Goff. “Leakage of confidential information from the SIS for political purposes is...
    Labour | 21-08
  • High dollar, hands-off Govt sends workers to dole queue
    The loss of up to 100 jobs at Croxley stationery in Auckland is devastating news for their families and the local Avondale community, Labour’s Employment, Skills and Training spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The company’s inability to compete in international markets...
    Labour | 21-08
  • National’s flagship education policy dead in the water
    National’s plan to create executive principals and expert teachers is effectively dead in the water with news that 93 percent of primary teachers have no confidence in the scheme, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The fact that teachers are...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Dunedin will be a knowledge and innovation centre under Labour
    Dunedin will become a knowledge and innovation centre under a Labour Government that will back local businesses, support technology initiatives and fund dynamic regional projects, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Nowhere has the National Government’s short-sightedness been more apparently than...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Inquiry into SIS disclosures the right decision
    Labour MP Phil Goff says the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has done the right thing by launching an inquiry into the disclosure of SIS documents about a meeting between himself and the agency’s former director-general. “This inquiry is necessary...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Labour – supporting and valuing carers and the cared for
    Placing real value on our elderly and the people who care for them will be a priority for a Labour Government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. Releasing Labour’s Senior Citizens policy today David Cunliffe promised that a Labour Government would...
    Labour | 20-08
  • By Hoki! It’s Labour’s fisheries policy
    A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Catching a fish from the rocks, beach...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Mighty River – Mighty Profits – Mighty hard to swallow
    Mighty River Power’s profit increase of 84 per cent is simply outrageous, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “Demand for electricity is flat or declining yet the company has made enormous profits. It is the latest power company to celebrate...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Collins’ actions were wrong, not unwise
    John Key’s moral compass remains off-kilter as he cannot bring himself to declare Judith Collins’ actions outright wrong, not simply ‘unwise’, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “Under pressure John Key is finally shifting his stance but his failure to condemn...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Voting starts tomorrow!
    On the telly, in the papers, on the Net, billboards on almost every street corner – it’s hard to miss the fact that there’s an election coming up. Everyone’s trying to win your vote on Election Day, September 20, (this...
    The Daily Blog | 02-09
  • Collins inquiry a whitewash before it has even started
    The farce whitewash that Key is trying to push through here for the inquiry into Judith Collins role in a hit on the SFO should enrage any NZer, regardless of how they vote. Whaleoil won’t be forced to appear, it’s...
    The Daily Blog | 02-09
  • Press Leaders Debate – Round 2 – 7pm tonight
    This debate is live in a Town Hall, Key has done well at these in the past, but since the hate politics exposed in Dirty Politics, expect real fury directed at Key. My guess is that Key will attempt to use whatever he...
    The Daily Blog | 02-09
  • MANA hit speed wobbles – why Annette Sykes will win Waiariki
    MANA are my favourites. But of late, their transition from crawling to sprinting has hit some speed wobbles. Hone’s and Pam’s aggressive attitude towards the media recently is very understandable in light of how connected many of the media were to...
    The Daily Blog | 02-09
  • Soz Cam – PaknSave boycott of whaleoil continues – time to start a boyc...
    Cam is so carcinogenic now, not even his mates in the Tobacco Industry are talking to him any longer. I suspect only the Israeli Defence Force propaganda department are paying for content on whaleoil now. Cam says that PaknSave have dropped their problems...
    The Daily Blog | 02-09
  • The Rock Fuels NZ Roastbuster Rape Culture
    This is making me feel pretty uncomfortable. Here we have an instance of Jono and Ben posing like “exposed celebrities”. But do you know what I’m seeing? I’m seeing two dudes who basically “roasted” a woman online (exposed pictures of...
    The Daily Blog | 02-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – Why beneficiaries need advocacy
    There are times when I am wrong. I was wrong recently when someone suggested to me that AAAP should be eligible for government funding to continues its advocacy work. That was before. Before dealing with advocacy on a weekly basis...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • TheDailyBlog September Political Poll Has Been Kicked Off
    The Daily Blog’s August poll has concluded and the September poll has been kicked off, asking readers: What party will you likely vote for at this year’s General Election? You will see this month’s poll in the right-hand sidebar of...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Jamie Whyte, leave that poor seal alone!
    Worse than showing mere lip service to Rainbow inclusion, ACT leader Jamie Whyte showed stunning arrogance when appeared at a candidates debate on rainbow issues hosted by the Auckland University Students’ Association last Thursday. The stunning hypocrisy was evident as...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Right wing can’t help but use scum
    Some people have been shocked that the traditional right wing party in New Zealand politics is so deeply embedded with scum like the blogger Whale Oil. We need not be so surprised. It takes a certain type to support the...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • EXCLUSIVE: National’s Ohariu candidate admits contact by Simon Lusk
    . . Wellington, NZ, 31  August – At a meet-the-candidates public meeting in the Rongotai Electorate, National’s Ohariu candidate, Brett Hudson, confirmed that he had been approached by “a mate”, who passed on a message from  National Party operative, Simon...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Auckland Broadcasting Debate 2014
    Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Auckland Broadcasting Debate 2014...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Petition for Governor General of New Zealand to Investigate all the allegat...
      Now we see the inquiry will be a whitewash, that is secret, won’t be consulted with the Opposition, will have limited scope and will ignore Nicky Hager’s book, we must demand the Governor General step in and demand an...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Ashburton, 1 September 2014
    I NEVER WENT BACK to Aramoana after the killing. I had been a frequent visitor to the tiny seaside village back in the late 1970s and throughout the 80s. Its tall cliffs and broad beaches providing a colourful backdrop to...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Checkmate in 1 move – how could Slater have known what was in OIA request...
    And now we get down to the final few moves before checkmate. If the following investigation is right, how could Slater and Collins have known what was in the Secret Intelligence Service Official Information Act request that hadn’t been released...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • The Edge Posts Naked Photos Of Jennifer Lawrence Without Consent
    Today the Edge website – owned by Media Works – published fully naked photographs of Jennifer Lawrence without her consent. It is not OK to publish naked media of any woman without her consent, full stop. It is absolutely disgusting...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Bomber, Laila and Maggie – a highlight from Auckland Broadcasting Debate ...
    Bomber, Laila and Maggie – a highlight from Auckland Broadcasting Debate 2014...
    The Daily Blog | 01-09
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, how good was I i...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • Maggie Barry slags Laila Harre & blogger, audience erupt
    The Coalition for Better Broadcasting held their public meeting in Auckland last night and it became a fiery shouting match when Maggie Barry decided to slag Laila Harre and me off. 250 people packed into the Pioneer Hall off High...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • It has to be a full independent public inquiry and Key MUST front
      You know things are bad when images like this start appearing in the media.  It isn’t a ‘left wing conspiracy’ to point out the over whelming evidence of what is clearly a right wing conspiracy! If it looks like a conspiracy, sounds like a conspiracy...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • Political Party social media stats – National playing Dirty Politics on s...
    Interesting data from friend of the blog, Marty Stewart, on social media likes and it shows an interesting question that post Dirty Politics should probably get asked…   …it’s interesting that Key has so many personal followers.  One wonders if...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • The depth of the National rot and the compliance of our news media
    I’m so tired. Aren’t you? I don’t want to read the news anymore. It’s awful and I feel ashamed of it. We live in a country that people all over the world would give an arm, a leg; their life...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • Conservative Party candidate links smacking ban with suicide, sexually tran...
    If Chemtrails, faked moon landings and climate change denial weren’t enough, welcome to your new Minister for Spanking,  Edward Saafi... The anti-smacking law is to blame for youth suicide, youth prostitution and even sexually-transmitted infections, a leading Conservative party candidate...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • A brief word on the canonisation of Matthew Hooton
    Before we all start the canonisation of Matthew Hooton, let’s consider some home truths here shall we? While the Wellington Ruminator Blog, the blog who was previously mates with Judith Collins, now seems to have a crush on Matthew Hooton… …I...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • A brief word on undercover cops in bars
    Dunedin police booze operation labelled ‘creepy’ Undercover police officers drank in Dunedin bars as part of an operation targeting liquor licensing offences. While police said the inaugural operation was a success — with most bars found compliant — the Hospitality...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • Judith Collins press conference
    Judith Collins press conference...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Angry Lawyer – Collins, Odgers, Williams and legal ethics
    We deserve better lawyers than Judith Collins Three of the worst offenders exposed in Dirty Politics are lawyers: Judith Collins, Cathy Odgers, and Jordan Williams. What Nicky Hager exposed them doing would be out of line for anyone, but from...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Necessary Defence
    Increasingly climate change is becoming the main fracture line between political parties. Where political parties stand on climate change defines political parties and movements like no other issue. The Mana Movement like the Maori Party it sprang from, came out...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • Why it is all over for John Key
    Image: Melanie D I’ve been confident that National will lose this election and that our focus should be on what a progressive Government needs to establish as its agenda in the first 100 days. Past that point, the establishment pushes back...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • A brief word to everyone who voted National in 2011
    I received this interesting email from a National Party supporter today… …let me say this to anyone who voted National last election – you should be ashamed by what has been revealed and what your vote ended up enabling but...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • EXCLUSIVE: Déjà Vu All Over Again: John Ansell confirms his participation...
      THE MAN BEHIND the Iwi-Kiwi billboards that very nearly won the 2005 election for Don Brash and the National Party has confirmed his involvement in businessman John Third’s and former Act MP Owen Jennings’ campaign to drive down the...
    The Daily Blog | 31-08
  • Public Broadcasting Auckland debate 6.30pm tonight now with Colin Craig &am...
    The Coalition for Better Broadcasting debate on public broadcasting happens tonight at 6.30pm in Auckland at the Pioneer Women’s Hall, High Street, Auckland City.  In the light of Dirty Politics and the manipulation of the media, public broadcasting is more important for...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • Winners & Losers in Collins sacking plus what’s the latest on Slater...
      Make no mistake, there was no way this was a resignation, it’s a face saving way out for Collins, she was sacked.  My understanding is that National internal polls are haemorrhaging and that the powers that be within National...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • Third party propaganda attacks incoming Labour-led government
    . . Further to a report by Daily Blogger, Chris Trotter, on receiving information regarding planned attack-billboards, the following billboard is highly visible to traffic on the southbound lane of the Wellington motorway, just prior to the Murphy St turn-off....
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • Labour wins the Internet
    I’m sure I’m not the only one who tried to vote online for the leaders debate and couldn’t because the website was down. The next option was the txt vote, 75c a pop of course. So I’m not surprised that...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – Rotherham and the need to challenge willful bl...
    I haven’t been following the events in Rotterham too closely.  I’ve read about the basic issues and the culture of silence that stopped action been taken even after complaints were made.  That culture of silence is incredibly familiar, and described...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • Review: Hairspray
      Oh Hairspray! What fun! Somehow I managed to miss the movie when it came out, I had no idea really what it was about though I felt it had a vague relation to High School Musical. In retrospect, that...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • Mounting global pressure against Timor-Leste’s ‘death sentence’ media...
    East Timor’s José Belo … courageous fight against ‘unconstitutional’ media law.Image: © Ted McDonnell 2014 CAFÉ PACIFIC and the Pacific Media Centre Online posted challenges to the controversial ‘press law’ nine months ago when it emerged how dangerous this draft...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Spies, Lies and When Campaigns Are Fried
    Like most of the rest of the nation’s political classes, I was eagerly affixed to TV One from 12:30 on Saturday afternoon to witness the downfall of Judith Collins.Whenever we witness the crumbling of a titan of the political landscape...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • BREAKING: Whaleoil crushes Crusher
    Judith ends up shooting herself A new email has been released suggesting that Collins was attempting to undermine the head of Serious Fraud Office with the help of far right hate speech merchant Cameron Slater. Unbelievable!   She has been forced...
    The Daily Blog | 30-08
  • BREAKING: Rumours Judith Collins gone at lunchtime
    Brook Sabin first of the mark with rumours Judith Collins is about to resign – PM announcing a statement at 12.30pm… …Paddy follows… …Vance confirms..   …if Collins is gone by lunchtime, it will be because the PM understands the...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • BREAKING: UPDATE on DIRT ALERT!
    Thanks to the information passed to Chris Trotter by “Idiot/Savant” from No Right Turn it is now possible to identify at least some of the persons involved in this latest example of attack politics. What follows is Chris’s response to Idiot/Savant’s timely assistance: Well done...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • Comparing burning puppets, hip hop lyrics and drunk student chants to black...
    Watching the mainstream media try and obscure Cunliffe’s surprise win in the leaders debate  is a reminder the Press Gallery is in depressed shock. The current spin line from the Wellington bubble media in the wake of Dirty Politics is that...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • Why has it all gone quiet on Charter Schools?
    They’re one of ACT’s flagship policies and the National Party have been gung ho in supporting them. So how come we’re not hearing Hekia Parata, Jamie Whyte, Catherine Isaac, et al singing from the rafters about what a resounding success charter...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • Moment of Truth – September 15th – Auckland Town Hall
    Moment of Truth – September 15th – Auckland Town Hall...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • EXCLUSIVE: Dirt Alert! Are the Greens and Labour about to become the target...
    WE’VE SEEN IT ALL BEFORE. In 2005 pamphlets began appearing all over New Zealand attacking Labour and the Greens. For a couple of days both the parties targeted and the news media were flummoxed. Who was behind such an obviously...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • The Donghua Liu Affair: the Press Council’s decision
    . . 1. Prologue . The Donghua Liu Affair hit  the headlines on 18 June, with allegations that David Cunliffe wrote a letter in 2003,  on  behalf of  business migrant, Donghua Liu. Four days later, on Sunday 22 June, the...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • The difference between Cunliffe & Key in the debate
    It was with much interest that I watched the leaders debate on Thursday night.  I watched with an open mind, always happy to have my opinion changed.  Maybe John Key is all the wonderful things that many say about him,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Denis Tegg – When Did We Agree To Our Data Being Shared with ...
    New shocking evidence has emerged from Edward Snowden’s trove of documents about a program called ICREACH under which data collected by the GCSB is shared with 23 US spy agencies. Under new sharing agreements which appear to have commenced immediately after...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Why Internet MANA are the best political friends the Greens could ever get
    Metiria at last nights #GreenRoomNZ: standing on the shoulders and camera cases of giants  NZers, regardless of political spectrum or apathy level, have a wonderful beach cricket egalitarianism about us. If we can objectively conclude a winner, then that person...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Independent Epsom Candidates ‘One Strike’ Crime Policy
    Best wishes to all of those who live in Epsom, Mount Eden, New Market, Remuera and of course the rest of New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Large majorities of NZ First voters would prefer Labour deal
    67% of those who voted for New Zealand First at the 2011 general election would prefer Labour to lead a coalition government if one is needed after September 20’s general election....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Jointly owned urban development agency for Christchurch
    “Given the strategic importance of the Canterbury rebuild, it is logical that the transition from emergency governance arrangements is overseen by the Prime Minister’s office, but to maintain momentum in the city centre an expert development agency...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Collins inquiry at best a Band-Aid, a permanent fix needed
    Collins inquiry at best a Band-Aid, a permanent fix is needed The Public Service Association (PSA) says the inquiry into Judith Collins’ behaviour must be accompanied by a process to restore the lost trust between Ministers and public servants if...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Association welcomes new Chief Executive
    “The New Zealand Police Association is pleased to announce the appointment of Heather Verry to Chief Executive. Heather picks up the mantle from Chris Pentecost, who recently retired from this position,” Police Association President Greg O’Connor said...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Young Voters Want Politicians to Grow Up
    Young voters want answers to the questions that directly affect them – but it seems as much as anything, they want politicians to grow up....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Climate Voter election debate to get big audience
    Auckland, 2 September 2014 - Tickets to tomorrow night’s first-ever Climate Voter election debate have sold out but an online audience will also get to see the event live....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • The Edge show disregard for consent
    The Edge has shown complete disregard for consent, for women’s bodies and in doing so has contributed to the wider issue of rape culture in New Zealand says specialist sexual violence prevention organisation, Sexual Abuse Prevention Network. Yesterday,...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • The Rock is Fuelling New Zealand’s Roastbuster Rape Culture
    The Rock are still displaying without-consent images of Jennifer Lawrence and other celebrities online. They are making fun of this without-consent action, saying that she was "asking for it", etc. They appear to be supporting this kind of...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • HRLA Condemns Murder of Filipino Human Rights lawyer
    Attorney Rodolfo R. Felicio, a member of the National Union of Peoples Lawyers , was gunned down while working on a land dispute in Rizal, east of Manila. Two caretakers of the disputed land were also injured in the attack....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • SFO lays charges for procurement fraud
    Two individuals have been charged in the Auckland District Court today with Crimes Act charges laid by the Serious Fraud Office for alleged fraud against Mighty River Power Limited relating to procurement for the Company’s Southdown power station....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Commitment to lifting wages good for New Zealand
    The Service and Food Workers Union has applauded the Green Party workers’ policy announced today....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Sykes: There’s Only One Poll That Counts
    “One of the oldest sayings in politics is that there is only one poll that counts – the one on Election Day – and that’s the one that I am focusing on” remarked the MANA Movement candidate for Waiariki, Annette...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Winston Peters Shown up by the Civilian Party
    Even the satirical 'Civilian Party' has now offered the Taxpayers’ Union more credible figures for the ' Bribe-O-Meter ' than Winston Peters’ New Zealand First. The Taxpayers’ Union Bribe-O-Meter now includes, National, Labour, the Greens,...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Further criminal investigation into CTV Building collapse
    Police has today confirmed it will be advancing the criminal investigation into the collapse of the CTV building in February 2011....
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Greens policy to restore link between effort and reward
    The Green Party’s new workers policy articulates an alternative to wage repression and job insecurity based on restoring the link between effort and reward, according to FIRST Union. The core tenets of the policy include implementing an $18 minimum...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Greens workers policy supported by union movement
    The CTU is supporting the Green Party’s policy launched today focused on improving life for working New Zealanders. “This policy shows the Greens commitment to collective bargaining as the best and fairest way to improve workers terms and conditions. It...
    Scoop politics | 02-09
  • Research Scholarships for Cannabis Treatments
    Medical cannabis research will be boosted by $140 million if the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party is elected on September 20. Pediatric epilepsy treatment will be one of the main priorities for the research scholarships....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Ngai Te Rangi Change to Tribal Elections
    Ngai Te Rangi has begun a postal vote of beneficiaries to change the way representatives are elected to the two Ngai Te Rangi tribal organisations....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Greens’ commitment to pay equity welcomed by workers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says the 58,000 workers they represent will benefit from the announcement by the Green Party of a commitment to pay equity and to a living wage for core public servants and contractors....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Real People Powering Real Policy
    New Zealanders from all walks of life have helped the Internet Party create a full platform of strong, progressive and realistic policies that will create a better future for everyone, says leader Laila Harré....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • University of Canterbury to help with forestry safety
    The University of Canterbury is to launch a new research project to make sure New Zealand’s new forestry roads are safe and are established with minimal environmental impact....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Time to get serious about ending homelessness!
    New Zealand needs a comprehensive set of policies that address the housing and support needs of homeless people as well as significantly increasing the supply of affordable, good quality houses and flats....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Hundreds to join domestic, sexual violence march
    Several social service providers from across New Zealand have come together to call for an end to the epidemic level of domestic and sexual violence in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Students helped with debt repayments
    New Zealand students now living in Australia are being reminded not to ignore their student loan debt as Inland Revenue expands its latest tool to help with repayments....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Launch of GenderNeutral.co.nz website
    GenderNeutral.co.nz are excited to announce the launch of their new website, GenderNeutral.co.nz ....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Factory farming debaters to look chicken in the eye
    MPs participating in a panel discussion about factory farming will come face-to-face with a real live hen, rescued from the claws of the intensive farming industry. Hettie the Hen will demonstrate to the MPs what little space is afforded to...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Leadership stands strong behind Internet MANA relationship
    “There is now, and always will be, a range of views about many issues within our movement and members are free to express them, but Georgina’s views on Kim Dotcom are not shared by the MANA Movement leadership or the...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Personal Statement by Matthew Hooton
    Personal Statement by Matthew Hooton 1 September 2014 For Immediate Release “This morning I made comments on Radio New Zealand’s Nine to Noon programme about an attempt by staff in the Prime Minister’s Office to interfere in the appointment...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • The Worm turns down for John Key
    John Key struggled to coax The Worm above the line in Thursday’s Leaders Debate, according to Roy Morgan’s Reactor, the original Worm. John Key struggled to coax The Worm above the line in Thursday’s Leaders Debate, according to Roy Morgan’s...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • The Edge Posts Naked Photos Without Consent
    The Edge website, owned by Media Works have published fully naked photographs of Jennifer Lawrence without her consent....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Statement from the Governor-General on Ashburton Shootings
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, has expressed his deep shock following the shooting of three people in Ashburton today....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Update on IGIS inquiry into release of NZSIS information
    In recognition of the public interest, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, took the unusual step of providing an update during the course of an inquiry and confirmed today that she would be summoning a number of individuals...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • An Open Government Plan developed in secrecy
    The State Services Commission sent NZ’s Open Government Action Plan to the international Open Government Partnership (OGP) Secretariat on 31 July. The countries involved in the OGP since its inception - from the UK and US to Indonesia and Brazil...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • KiwiRail; another year older and deeper in debt
    That is a lot of money and there are lessons that need to be learnt before we pour in another $1 billion....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Fonterra China Deal Demands Safe Supply Chain
    The future success of Fonterra’s deal to sell infant formula in China [1] requires all milk it uses be safe and for Fonterra to secure its supply chain from contamination by GE DNA and pesticide residues. There is now significant...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • HRC praises Auckland mum for speaking out
    Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy has praised an Auckland mother of four who went public after humiliating treatment by staff at The Warehouse....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Southern DHB refers disputed issue to Serious Fraud Office
    Following advice from forensic investigation firm Beattie Varley Limited, Southern District Health Board has referred the expenditure at the centre of its long running dispute with South Link Health to the Serious Fraud Office. The parties have been...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • The Letter 1 September 2014
    Last night’s TVNZ Colmar Brunton poll puts the left and right 60 MPs each. United and the Maori Party say they will go with the side that gets to 61 MPs. ACT just needs just 1.3% or 28 thousand Party...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Shopping Giveaway Harmless Fun For Kids
    Family First NZ is rubbishing claims by critics including Gareth Morgan that the New World ‘Little Shop’ promotion is harmful for kids, and says that kids should be allowed to be kids. “Children love acting like their parents and pretending...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Red Cross launches employment service for former refugees
    New Zealand Red Cross is encouraging employers to give refugees a fresh startwith the launch of Pathways to Employment, a nationwide work assistance service....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • EDS welcomes Labour’s Conservation Policy
    The Environmental Defence Society has welcomed Labour’s Conservation Policy including the key objective of halting the current pattern of indigenous biodiversity decline within ten years....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Poverty is falling and income inequality is not rising
    “A Roy Morgan poll shows that the issue people are most concerned about is income inequality. This just goes to show how the persistent repetition of a lie bewilders the public. Income inequality is not in fact rising. And the...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Rotary NZ responding to Fiji water and sanitation issues
    Clean water and sanitation are vital to health. In Fiji Rotary New Zealand have been targeting 22 communities that are experiencing severe hardship mainly because they don’t have access to clean water for their drinking, cleaning and cooking needs....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Work & Income shooting a Tragedy
    Kay Brereton speaking on behalf of the National Beneficiary Advocacy Consultancy group says; “Two people shot and another wounded, this is a tragedy and our deepest sympathy goes out to the family and whanau of the victims, as well as...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • 1080 Poison Deer Repellent not Effective – Farmers
    Four deer have been found dead within a farmer's bush block, after an aerial 1080 poison drop applied with deer repellent. The drop was part of a 30,000 hectare drop across the Northern Pureora Forest Park....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Employment Charter will strengthen migrants’ rights
    Establishing an Employment Charter for construction companies is a critical step to strengthening the rights of migrant workers that are fast becoming the face of the Christchurch rebuild, according to an alliance of union groups. The charter has...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Global March For Elephants and Rhino
    It’s a trans-national business that funds terrorist organisations, fuels conflict in Africa, and poses environmental, development and security challenges. The illegal wildlife trade is also a lucrative business, generating an estimated USD$20 billion...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • New series of videos aimed at disengaged youth
    From the people who brought you 'NZ Idle' (NZ's favourite web series about an artist on the dole) comes a new series about election time: Choice Lolz....
    Scoop politics | 01-09
  • Picket Of Leaders Christchurch Debate
    KEEP OUR ASSETS PICKET OF LEADERS CHRISTCHURCH DEBATE TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 2nd, 6 p.m. ST MARGARETS COLLEGE, SHREWSBURY STREET, MERIVALE...
    Scoop politics | 01-09
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