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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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    ...
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    Mana | 07-09
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    Mana | 07-09
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    Labour | 06-09
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    Labour | 04-09
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    Labour | 03-09
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    Labour | 03-09
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    A Labour Government will act quickly to protect and enhance New Zealand’s reputation as one of the most open and least corrupt countries in the world, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “The health of any democracy is improved by greater...
    Labour | 02-09
  • MANA Movement says tax cut on GST must be first priority – Minto
    “If Prime Minister John Key has money available for tax cuts then cutting GST must be the first priority”,  said MANA Movement Economic Justice Spokesperson John Minto. GST is a nasty tax on low-income families”, said Minto. “People in the...
    Mana | 02-09
  • The Maori Party’s Mana-Enhancing Relationship with National – Minto
    “First we had Cameron Slater and David Farrar backing Labour’s Kelvin Davis bid to unseat MANA Movement Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Hone Harawira.  Now we have Slater writing a pro-Te Ururoa Flavell article on his website, Whale...
    Mana | 02-09
  • 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...
    Mana | 02-09
  • Local communities critical to Civil Defence
    Labour will focus on empowering New Zealand communities to be resilient in Civil Defence disasters, says Labour’s Civil Defence spokesperson Clare Curran. Announcing Labour’s Civil Defence policy, she says that Labour will work with schools, voluntary agencies and community groups...
    Labour | 02-09
  • Labour looks to long-life passports, gambling harm review
    A return to 10 year passports and a review of gambling laws are highlights of Labour’s Internal Affairs policy released today. “More than 15,000 New Zealanders signed a petition calling on the Government to revert to the 10 year system...
    Labour | 02-09
  • MANA Movement 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 vast majority...
    Mana | 01-09
  • Rebuilding the New Zealand Defence Force
    A Labour Government will make it a priority to rebuild the capacity of the Defence Force to carry out the tasks expected of it, says Labour’s Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff. Releasing Labour’s Defence Policy today he said the NZDF has...
    Labour | 01-09
  • Voting turnout affected by bad weather?
    . . NZ, Upper Hutt, 20 September –  Cold, wet weather in the Hutt Valley, north of Wellington may be impacting on voter turn-out. A head-count of people visiting the Trentham School Voting Station in Moonshine Rd, Upper Hutt, indicated...
    The Daily Blog | 20-09
  • Final total of advance voting
    And the final total for the advance voting was a staggering 717,579 advance votes against 334,558 in 2011       Tonight, I’ll be watching the TV3 election coverage because I could bare Paul Henry’s smugness one inch more than Mike Hosking’s...
    The Daily Blog | 20-09
  • Vice article on NZ election
    Here is my Vice article on the NZ election....
    The Daily Blog | 19-09
  • The attempt to kill off Internet MANA
    It’s the last day of campaigning today and the long list of those attacking Internet MANA got longer yesterday with Winston Peters backing Labour candidate Kelvin Davis against the MANA Movement’s Hone Harawira. Davis is now supported by Labour, National,...
    The Daily Blog | 19-09
  • A final word on the election – it’s now all up to you
    Brothers & Sisters, the fate of Aotearoa is now all in your hands. We here at the Daily Blog have thrown everything we can at this bloody Government and have spent every waking hour of this campaign trying to highlight...
    The Daily Blog | 19-09
  • I can’t tell what is National Party advert and what is the NZ Herald – ...
    I can’t tell what is National Party advert and what is the NZ Herald – but then again, I never could...
    The Daily Blog | 19-09
  • TVNZ election coverage – white people telling other white people why Nati...
    TVNZ election coverage – white people telling other white people why National Party is great...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • REVIEW: Royals of Kihikihi
    What an absolutely stunning show.  I had to ask twice to check I’d heard right that this is the first staged production for Samuel Christopher, who also played a raw, real, but vulnerable, Wolf Royal, home from London for his...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • 800 Cops to detain 15 ‘terrorists’ – why Australia’s hysterical Isl...
    I’m sorry but I can’t take this current Australian terror threat seriously. 800 cops to detain 15 people and arrest one of them? A week after Abbot decides to send in Australian forces to the cluster fuck of Iraq, suddenly...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Unbelievable corruption inside Government to attack Kim Dotcom
    The corruption inside this Government just more and more filthy – we now have an ex-Customs Lawyer quitting  after being told to bury information that could embarrass the Government, specifically to do with Kim Dotcom… Curtis Gregorash said he was told...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Everyone Loves A Win-Win That Keeps G...
      Permit me to quote some figures at you… -68% of New Zealanders think political news on television focuses too much on politicians’ personalities and not enough on real issues. This is the key result of a recent UMR survey commissioned by...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, another week of ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, another week of being the most in demand broadcaster in the country...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • EXCLUSIVE: Te Tai Tokerau independent poll (44% Hone-27% Kelvin) vs Maori T...
    The Te Tai Tokerau Maori TV poll on Monday this week painted a bleak picture for Internet MANA supporters, and it’s results have been seized upon by Labour, NZ First and even the Maori Party (who seem set once again...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • The time for TPPA weasel words is over
    Almost every day of the election campaign there has been a policy announcement that would potentially run foul of what I understand is currently in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA):  more constraints on foreign investment or investors … regulation of...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • MELTDOWN – Maori Party turns on their own Te Tai Tokerau candidate – ag...
    The tensions are building in Te Tai Tokerau with the Maori Party on the verge of meltdown. Days out from the election, the Maori Party Executive has tried to heavy their own Te Tai Tokerau Electoral Committee and their own candidate, Te Hira Paenga,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • We Can Change this Government
    We Can Change this Government – Mike Treen at the First Union stop work election meeting...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Election 2014: For and Against
    With the general election tomorrow, we have had a very noisy campaign but little sign that the electorate wishes for a fundamental change of governmental direction. This reflects in part the fact that the economic cycle is close to its decadal...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Eye To Eye Uploaded: Martyn ‘Bomber’ Bradbury
    This interview was filmed a couple of weeks ago between Willie Jackson and myself, I was a tad off with my prediction of NZ First....
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • The Donghua Liu Affair – The Players Revealed
      . . – Special investigation by Frank Macskasy & ‘Hercules‘ Speculation that the Beehive office of Immigration Minister, Michael Woodhouse, was behind the release of a letter linking Labour leader, David Cunliffe, with controversial Chinese businessman, Donghua Liu, is...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • As if you needed another reason to boycott Telecom/Spark – they sold NZ d...
    It should read ‘never stop spying’. As if you needed another reason to boycott Telecom/Spark – they sold us down the river to the US by allowing the Southern Cross cable to be tapped… The ability for US intelligence agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • The NZ First-Labour Party attack strategy against Internet MANA better work
    The final days of the campaign are ticking down and Labour and NZ First are manoeuvring to kill off the Internet MANA Party by both backing Kelvin Davis for Te Tai Tokerau. It’s a risky gambit that they better pray to Christ...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Bill English’s latest insult to beneficiaries – apparently they are lik...
    National’s hatred towards the poor continues unabated as National desperately try to throw raw meat to their reactionary voter base in the hope to inspire enough hate and loathing to win back their redneck voters from the Conservative Party and from...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Eminem ain’t happy with John Key
    Eminem ain’t happy with John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Key claims he did not inhale
    Key claims he did not inhale...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Final prediction on election result 2014
    What an election campaign. The character assassination of David Cunliffe kicked things off with the Herald on Sunday falsely claiming $100 00 bottles of wine, $15 000 books and $150 000 in donations  from a donor that turned out to be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Live blog: Bainamarama takes commanding lead in Fiji elections
      Interview with Repúblika editor Ricardo Morris and Pacific Scoop’s Mads Anneberg. PACIFIC SCOOP TEAM By Ricardo Morris, Mads Anneberg, Alistar Kata and Biutoka Kacimaiwai in Suva WHILE the results are provisional at this stage, it is clear today that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • 5AA Australia: NZ Elections Two Days To Go! + Edward Snowden + Julian Assan...
    Recorded live on 18/09/14 – Captured Live on Ustream at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/multimedia-investments-ltd 5AA Australia’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning deliver their weekly bulletin: Across The Ditch. This week, they discuss the latest news as New Zealanders go to the polls on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • What has Colin Craig done for his Press Secretary to quit 2 days before ele...
    This is VERY strange.  Colin Craig’s Press Secretary Rachel McGregor, has quit 2 days before the election, allegedly telling ZB that Colin Craig was a “very manipulative man”. I’ve met Rachel many times in the past as Colin’s Press Secretary, she is...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • “If you want steak, go to the supermarket and buy steak,” – A brief w...
    “If you want steak, go to the supermarket and buy steak,” said Key in the final leaders debate. Problem of course is that the 250 000 – 285 000 children living in poverty can not afford steak, milk, butter, eggs...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • National’s final bash of beneficiaries before the election
    On cue, whenever National feel threatened, they roll out a little bennie bash just to keep their redneck voter base happy. Nothing like a bit of raw meat policy to keep National voters focused on the evil threat solo parents...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • With All Of This In Mind, I Vote
    This is my last blog before the election and I really just want to speak from the heart. Right now in this country it seems to me that a lot of people consider the “essentials” in life to be simply...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Left has to vote strategically this election
    The dedication, loyalty, and tribalism of party politics means that sometimes the left lets itself down by not voting strategically. We all want our favoured party to get maximum votes, naturally, but the winner-takes-all approach doesn’t always suit multi-party left...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Dear NZ – as you enter the polling booth, stand up for your rights
    The last days before a NZ general election are a busy time as politicians make their pitch and party activists prepare to get out the vote. It is sort of weird watching from the distance of Europe the strangest election...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • What is Waihopai, John, if it isn’t a facility for “mass surveillance...
    John Key assured us on RNZ’s Nine to Noon programme yesterday that “In terms of the Fives Eyes data bases… yes New Zealand will contribute some information but not mass wholesale surveillance.” How does this square with the operation of the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Mass Surveillance and the Banality of E...
    Renowned journalist and intellectual Hannah Arendt coined the phrase “the banality of evil” to describe the normalisation of genocide in Nazi Germany. I thought of her phrase when I was listening to Glenn Greenwald and other international whistle-blowers talking about...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Election. Down. To. The. Wire
    Funny how last week it was John Key winning by 50%, now it’s neck and neck. I have always believed this election would be down to the wire and it is proving so. The flawed landline opinion polls the mainstream...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • 3rd Degree uses Whaleoil for story ideas as if Dirty Politics never happene...
    TV3s 3rd Degrees smear job on Kim Dotcom last night doesn’t bear much repeating. It was pretty pathetic journalism from a team who have brought us some great journalism in the past. It is sad to see 3rd Degree stooping...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Live blog: Bainimarama takes early lead in Fiji’s election
    Pacific Scoop’s Alistar Kata reports from yesterday’s voting. By Alistar Kata of Pacific Scoop in Suva Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama took an early lead in provisional results in the Fiji general election last night. With provisional results from 170 out...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Has The NSA Constructed The Perfect PPP?
    Former intelligence analyst and whistleblower, Edward Snowden – speaking live to those gathered at the Auckland Town Hall on Monday September 17, 2014. Investigation by Selwyn Manning. THE PRIME MINISTER JOHN KEY’s admission on Wednesday that whistleblower Edward Snowden “may...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • No way – Key admits Snowden is right
    After claiming there was no middle ground. After claiming there was no mass surveillance. After calling Glenn Greenwald a henchman and a loser. After all the mainstream media pundits screamed at Kim’s decision to take his evidence to Parliamentary Privileges...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Bad luck National
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • The incredible changing John Key story on mass spying – why the Moment of...
    While the mainstream media continue to try and make the Moment of Truth about Kim’s last minute decision to prolong his battle against John Key past the election into the Privileges Committee, the reality is that the Moment of Truth...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Themes of the Campaign
    There’s one area of a political campaign that just about everyone, at some point, falls afoul of. The campaign song. I’m not sure quite why it is, but it seems to be almost impossible for political parties to come up...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • GUEST BLOG – Denis Tegg – The NSA slides that prove mass surveillance
    The evidence presented by Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden on The Intercept of mass surveillance of New Zealanders by the GCSB is undeniable, and can stand on its own. But when you place this fresh evidence in the context of...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Ukraine, United Kingdom, Ireland, Scotland
    The Ukrainian civil war discomforts me. It seems to me the most dangerous political crisis since the Cuban missile crisis of 1962. And it’s because of our unwillingness to examine the issues in a holistic way. We innately prefer to...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • John Key’s love affair with a straw man – the relationship intensifies
    John Key’s love affair with the straw man is now a fully-committed relationship. It’s now the first love of his life. Sorry Bronagh. Yesterday I pointed to Key’s constant assurances that there is no mass surveillance of New Zealanders by...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • A brief word on why Wendyl Nissen is a hero
    Wendyl Nissen is a hero. The sleazy black ops attack on her by Slater and Odgers on behalf of Grocery Council chief executive Katherine Rich is sick. All Nissen is doing in her column is point out the filth and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • She saw John Key on TV and decided to vote!
    . . NZ, Wellington, 15 September – ‘Tina’* is 50, a close friend,  and one of the “Missing Million” from the last election. In fact, ‘Tina’ has never voted in her life.  Not once. In ‘Tina’s’ own words, politics has...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Eminem sues National Party for unlawful use of ‘Lose yourself’ bhahahah...
    …ahahahahahahahaha. Oh Christ this is hilarious… National Party sued over Eminem copyright infringment US rapper Eminem is suing the National Party for allegedly breaching copyright by using his song Lose Yourself in its campaign advertisements. The Detroit-based publishers of Eminem’s...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Are the Greens about to be snookered by a Labour-NZ First Government?
    I wrote last week that it was smart politics that the Greens pointed out they could work with National, the soft blue vote that’s looking for a home in the wake of Dirty Politics isn’t going to Labour, so the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Daily Election Update #12: NZ First to hold balance of power
    Winston Peters’ NZ First Party will hold the balance of power after tomorrow’s election, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. Mr Peters is then expected to back a National-led...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Election Day is Time to Refocus on Policies
    Over the course of this election campaign there has been a lot of focus on dirty politics and spying, and not a lot on policy. With election day looming, Gareth Morgan is calling for people to refocus on the issues....
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • The Kiwi FM Alternative Election Commentary
    Saturday 20 September from 7pm on 102.2 Auckland, 102.1 Wellington, 102.5 Canterbury, or KiwiFM.co.nz...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Beneficiary Bashing unacceptable
    Kay Brereton of the Beneficiary Advocacy Federation of New Zealand says “ the comment made by Bill English yesterday comparing beneficiaries to crack addicts is shocking and incredibly poorly timed.”...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • UN Experience Beneficial
    Acclaim Otago representatives have just completed their participation at the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability examination of the New Zealand government in Geneva, Switzerland. "It was an interesting two days which we believe has...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Changing face of NZ should be reflected in newsrooms
    With Fairfax Media’s Journalism Intern search closing on Sunday, Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is urging aspiring journalists from Maori, Pacific and ethnic communities to apply. The deadline was recently extended to 10pm, Sunday...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • SPCA expresses concern over toxin in waterways
    Ric Odom CEO of Royal NZ SPCA has expressed concern over the toxic poison 1080 entering waterways, but DoC, Council’s and Ministry of Health have colluded to make it legal....
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • NZ 2014 Election Index – 13-18 September
    Below is iSentia’s final weekly Election Index, covering the period 13-18 September and showing the relative amount of coverage of nine Party Leaders in the lead up to the National Election across news media and social media. The methodology used...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Epsom Candidate (Adam Holland) More Liberal Than ACT
    For the past four years I, like 500,000 other New Zealanders, have been illegally smoking cannabis for medicinal purposes and/or even just for the occasional laugh with friends on the weekend. We don't hurt anybody, we don't cause nuisance, we...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Left Coalition Will Save Dolphins
    A left coalition would safeguard both Māui and Hector’s dolphins, as well as revive our inshore ecosystems. Labour, Internet Mana and the Green Party all have strong policies in place for dolphin protection. The Maori Party, and to a certain...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Waihoroi Shortland: Ngāti Hine is not standing alone
    The Chairman of Te Rūnanga a Iwi o Ngāpuhi, Sonny Tau is blowing smoke worthy of a Dotcom rally with claims that Ngati Hine is standing alone in its opposition to Tūhoronuku says the Chairman of Te Rūnanga o Ngati...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Oceania voices on environment loud and strong
    While money and energy continues to be spent on global talks about climate change, Pacific islanders are scrambling to build sea walls out of sticks, stones, shells and coral, to protect their lands and homes from erosion and rising sea...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Prime Time with Sean Plunket – Tonight
    No MPs tonight --- the campaign will be over at 9 30. Instead we will look back --- and possibly forward on what we have learned and what might happen. Listener Political Columnist Jane Clifton Editor in Chief, NZ Herald,...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Election fails to address youth financial wellbeing
    Young people don’t feel included in New Zealand’s financial success and believe inequality is a problem, according to a new survey conducted by Westpac’s Fin-Ed Centre at Massey University....
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Winston’s Waffle doesn’t hide the facts
    The Conservative Party is celebrating the ASA's finding announced today that rejected all but one of the complaints raised against its controversial “Conservatives or Peters” pamphlet. “Despite pages of complaints from Peters legal team the only...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • NZ Independent Coalition looking forward to tomorrow
    “Our team is looking forward to tomorrow. It is a real opportunity to reclaim politics for the people,” said NZ Independent Coalition leader Brendan Horan....
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Insights Issue 35/2014 – 19 September 2014
    Insights Issue 35/2014 - 19 September 2014 In This Issue • RMA reform the golden unicorn of policy | Jenesa Jeram...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Special voting arrangements made for NIWA crew
    One of the most unusual polling stations for this year’s general election is in the middle of the ocean miles from land. NIWA’s flagship research vessel Tangaroa, has been doubling as a polling booth for crew and scientists at sea....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Tourism operators urged to vote strategically
    Tourism operators should make sure they know their local candidates’ view on tourism and use their vote to support the country’s second largest export industry, says Chris Roberts, Chief Executive, Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA)....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • WGTN: March for free education
    We are students, university staff, and members of the community. Whichever parties form a government after September 20th, we are demanding an end to corporatisation of education....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Evidence of Corruption a National Scandal
    Internet Party leader Laila Harré will take evidence of corruption to international forums if there is not a full Royal Commission to investigate the growing evidence of the systematic use and abuse of democratic institutions and processes for political...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Govt continues to throw money at charter school experiment
    Official documents reveal the three primary sector charter schools approved last week will cost $2 million to set up as well as divert another $1.5 million of potential taxpayer investment from local state schools next year....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • ACT Final Election Rally
    Elections campaigns are an opportunity for political parties to put candidates and policy to enable voters to choose what sort of New Zealand we want. In this campaign there have been three tests by which you can assess the electoral...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Taxpayers on Hook Again for Solid Energy
    Responding to the Fairfax article that taxpayers are extending another $103 million to keep Solid Energy afloat, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Invermay Petition Tops 10,000 Signatures
    People across New Zealand continue to express their disgust at the downgrading of Invermay, says Dunedin North MP David Clark, as the Save Invermay petition he instigated earlier this year topped the 10,000 signature mark just days before the 2014...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • McVicar vows to continue fight for police
    Garth McVicar stated at a public meeting last week that he would fight to retain a 24/7 Police Station in Napier and no reduction in the number of police staff for the Hawkes Bay region, some said he was simply...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Party Vote Our Weapon in Fight Against Government Corruption
    Internet MANA urges New Zealanders to use their party vote to confront corruption in any new government....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Election day is tomorrow – make sure you’re a part of it!
    Tomorrow, Saturday 20 September, is election day, and New Zealanders’ last chance to have a say on who leads the country for the next three years....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Is the Shape of our Government out of the hands of Voters?
    In the last stuff.co.nz / Ipsos Political Poll before Saturdays election, National is down 5.1% to 47.7% and Labour up 3.7% to 26.15%. These results are remarkably similar to the 2011 election where National received 47.3% of the vote and...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Spirit of Suffrage a Call to Action for All Kiwi Women
    Internet MANA is drawing on the courage and integrity of New Zealand women on Suffrage Day – Friday, September, 19 – to encourage them to pay tribute to the spirit of their foremothers who gained women the vote....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Live Election Night Coverage on TV And Online
    Māori Television’s KOWHIRI 2014 – ELECTION SPECIAL kicks off at 7.00pm this Saturday with a five-hour broadcast focusing on the Māori electorates....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Judge’s Decision Disappoints Fish & Game
    Today’s decision to give a Temuka man 100 hours of community service for selling sports fish to the public has disappointed Fish & Game, which believes the sentence handed down was “too lenient and will not go far enough to...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Cutting-Edge Graphics Fire up TV3’s Election Night Coverage
    TV3’s Election Night coverage, hosted by John Campbell, will be enhanced by cutting-edge graphics that will showcase the night’s results....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Govt rushes to open charter schools in New Year
    The government’s decision to approve four new charter schools last week to open in January next year goes against the Minister of Education’s own advice that the schools ought to have at least a year’s preparation time....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • 7 Days And Jono And Ben at Ten Hijack Election Weekend
    The 7 Days and Jono and Ben at Ten (JABAT) comedians are running their own version of election coverage, with a schedule of entertainment and comedy across TV3, Kiwi FM, the web and social media this Friday and Saturday under...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Fewer Prisoners Equals Less Crime
    In its latest blog, ‘Abolishing Parole and other Crazy Stuff’,’ at http://blog.rethinking.org.nz/2014/09/krill-and-womble-independent-policy.html , Rethinking Crime and Punishment urges government to rethink its approach to releasing prisoners. “The public expectation is that the excellent reductions in the crime...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • McVicar slams his political opponents
    I want a safe and prosperous society and that can only be achieved if we have strong and vi-brant families – McVicar...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Falling economic growth – wage rises overdue
    “The lower GDP growth in the three months to June is further evidence that growth has peaked. New Zealand’s economy is on the way down to mediocre growth rates,” says CTU economist Bill Rosenberg. “Yet wage rises are still weak...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Get Out and Vote campaign a success
    Tens of thousands of workers from all around New Zealand have embraced the Get Out and Vote campaign and have created their own personalised voting plan, the CTU said today. “With three days of voting left in the 2014 General...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Animal Research Failing – So Do More Animal Research?
    Victoria University of Wellington is about to host a lecture on why the success rates of pharmaceutical development is so low and what can be done about it. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) welcomes discussion on this important...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • ALCP welcomes Prime Minister’s cannabis comments
    Mr Abbott's comments came on the same day as New South Wales and Victoria states announced they would be doing clinical trials of cannabis....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Conservative Party Press Secretary Resignation
    The Conservative Party is given to understand that this morning Press Secretary, Miss Rachel Macgregor resigned althought no formal advice of this has yet been received....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • By ACT’s logic, Epsom should vote for Conservative Candidate
    “Polling released late in the campaign shows that ACT is a busted flush and that by ACT’s own logic, centre-right Epsom voters should vote for the Conservative candidate”, says Labour candidate for Epsom Michael Wood....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • New online medical system
    Immigration New Zealand (INZ) is seeking registrations of interest for a new onshore panel physician network to support an online immigration health processing system....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Students, You Have a Choice, Vote!
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) is imploring students to ensure they make their voices heard this election, and join the many thousands who have already heeded the call....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Party vote ACT for three years of stability.
    Voters who are concerned that on the latest polls we may be heading for three years of instability have it in their hands to deliver a decisive result....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Women’s Suffrage Movement – Get Out and Vote!
    Tomorrow, Friday 19th September, MANA Movement Candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes, will cast her vote at 12 noon at the Zen’s Building, Rotorua. This will follow a march through Rotorua that will assemble at 10am at City Focus, Rotorua. The...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • iPredict Daily Update
    David Cunliffe and Labour have made gains over the last 24 hours, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict, but John Key’s National is still strongly expected to lead the next...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Conservative’s Proposal to Abolish Parole Fatally Flawed
    The Conservative Party’s proposal to abolish parole doesn't stack up, however which way you look at it, concludes Kim Workman in Rethinking Crime and Punishment latest blog, ‘Abolishing Parole and Other Crazy Stuff’ at http://blog.rethinking.org.nz/2014/09/krill-and-womble-independent-policy.html...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Special Edition : The letter 18 September 2014
    Dr Jamie Whyte has been giving thoughtful speeches largely unreported. So we thought we would put out an edited version on the speech he gave yesterday. The full speech is on the website....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
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