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The end of the media honeymoon for John Key

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 am, July 31st, 2013 - 97 comments
Categories: greens, john key, national, russel norman - Tags: ,

Yesterday in parliament I watched question time being used to its best effect.  Russell Norman nailed John Key by asking him a series of questions trying to find out why his chief of staff had demanded metadata about Andrea Vance.  Not only metadata about her movements around Parliament was handed over to the executive but data about her Fairfax paid phone calls was apparently also requested, collated, handed over to the requester but apparently not read and returned.  That sucking noise that Key makes when he is under pressure became more and more prominent as time went by and his answers became less and less convincing.  The overwhelming impression I have is that Key was completely on the defensive.

The denials of wrongdoing by Key and others are descending into pathos.

It was said that David Henry asked for Vance’s phone records but he then denied this request occurred.  Even though it was apparently never requested it was provided and Henry says that it was returned without being viewed.  Peter Dunne has come out however and said that he was asked by Henry for access to his landline telephone records so that they could be compared with Andrea Vance’s records although to be fair Henry has denied refuted this.

To add to the utter confusion speaker David Carter initially denied that Vance’s phone records were handed to Henry but yesterday in an embarassing back down said that the information was actually handed over.  There is talk of a shadowy “contractor” who released the data but the question has to be who within Parliamentary Services authorised the release of the information.

If Henry did not see the information then I have this nagging thought that someone else did.  Because it seems that someone may have told Winston Peters about what the records contained.

On May 31, 2013 he demanded the release of phone records to pinpoint the source of the leak of the Kitteridge report.  He then accused United Future leader Peter Dunne being the leaker.

He said ominously in Parliament that day to Bill English “[a]ll the evidence is in those phone records, and your minister is gone”.

Mr English was then reported as saying that it was entirely up to Mr Henry whether to seek phone records.

“If he thinks phone records will tell him something I’m sure he will go and get them. I’m a bit surprised at the detailed knowledge Mr Peters had about the way Mr Henry is doing his job.”

So who was leaking to Winston Peters and why?  And when he was talking about phone records was he talking about Dunne’s records or Vance’s records?

Whatever the answer to these questions are there is no doubt that reporters are genuinely distressed by this development and I am sure this will be reflected in how they report on issues particularly on the GCSB bill.  Key will no longer have the luxury of being able to call then knuckleheads.

The matter is deeply disturbing.  As said by John Armstrong this morning:

That someone working for Parliamentary Service could consider it okay to release the private phone records of a Press Gallery journalist to an inquiry sanctioned by the Prime Minister truly beggars belief.

It certainly gives new meaning to the word “service” in the bureaucracy which runs the parliamentary complex and looks after MPs’ needs.

It also speaks of something very sick and rotten at the heart of the country’s democracy. Whether the release was motivated by malice or ignorance, it adds up to a fundamental breach of press rights.

This issue highlights what is at stake with the GCSB Bill.  I am sure that Andrea Vance has nothing to fear but every justification to hide information from this Government that it has no right to.

97 comments on “The end of the media honeymoon for John Key”

  1. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1

    You win a set of steak knives and tickets to the Brazilian Mime Theatre’s production of Oklahoma.

    This is the 100,000th time since 2007 that a critic from the left has predicted that “the Honeymoon is Over”.

    If you are actually correct, it would be a weird confluence of 100,000th prediction and first correct prediction.

    • Mary 1.1

      Hope is all we have in a dictatorship.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1.1.1

        That’s right, Mary. Because we are living in a dictatorship.

        • vto 1.1.1.1

          That was Sir Geoffrey Palmers assertion Gormless. Do you imagine Palmer throws around such terms lightly? Why would he do that do you think?

          • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1.1.1.1.1

            I can only think he has said that because Key has unilaterally called off elections and declared himself dictator for life.

            Remind me. Has he done that?

            • Arfamo 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Well, no, but he could’ve been thinking about Judith when she gets sick of all the stuff ups that John seems to be a magnet for & boots him back home to the US.

            • vto 1.1.1.1.1.2

              Yep, you’re onto it. Wonder why John Campbell didn’t come to you for constitutional advice rather than Geoffrey Palmer………..

              • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                Because he knew I would not make sensational and fanciful claims like we are living in a dictatorship. That would have impacted on ratings. Fucking corporate media.

                • vto

                  Yep, like I said, you’re onto it.

                  Geoffrey Palmer is prone to sensation and fanciful claims.

                  • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                    So, when we have an election, if National does not gain a majority of votes, will it still be the government?

                    • Mary

                      Quite possibly, if it can cobble a coalition together. And if it does become the government after the next election, with or without a majority, it will continue to ignore every constitutional and democratic safeguard and principle it can get away with ignoring, as it is currently doing right now.

                    • North

                      You’re on a hiding to nothing gormless one. How cheap are you anyway ? Unilaterally setting the bar for valid discussion at ShonKey Python cancelling elections. You’ll note that no one’s raised that but you.

                      RWNJs are shitting, frantically building straw men, and whistling in the dark. Because they know in their hearts…….

        • Frank Macskasy 1.1.1.2

          “That’s right, Mary. Because we are living in a dictatorship.”

          Gormless – dictatorships will not be as obvious as you think.

          Aftere all, if you think you’re totally free to voice your thoughts – why are you using a pseudonym?

          • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1.1.1.2.1

            I am not using a pseudonym.

            • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1.1.1.2.1.1

              And what do you mean “Gormless – dictatorships will not be as obvious as you think.”

              Apparently, we are already living in one.

  2. insider 2

    Tech support people don’t just release information on a whim. I expect today’s PQs will be trying to nail down who actually asked the question.

    • Tim 2.1

      I call bullshit on that insider. They talk about things with their mates, and sometimes even brag about what they can get. On occasion, they even get it!
      I happen to have a concern with a lot of ‘outsourced’ IT. Often the provider’s employees do not have any sort of cultural understanding of The Public Service and what is required of a public servant – they don’t consider themselves to be public servants even though they’re acting in that capacity!

      • insider 2.1.1

        There’s a big difference between being able to see and do stuff and then bragging about it down at the pub, and packaging a specific set of data and handing that over to an authority figure. How would they have known what to select and who to give it to? Someone had to have given the instruction. Was it a helpful PS but over zealous staffer trying to support the inquiry or a political staffer, or a bit of both?

        • Tim 2.1.1.1

          I’ll give you just ONE example then shall I?
          I was once involved in a court case (that turned out to my benefit).
          A former employee of mine who went on to system administer a certain government agency through his now ‘private contractor employer’, came to me to and asked if I wanted him to get certain info beneficial to my cause. I did not accept and I reminded him of his responsibilities.
          Didn’t stop the bragging around places like Shed 5 on a Friday night however!
          Please – stop the naivety!
          I’d give you others, but I don’t intend identifying either the employee, or the (prominent) company. The matters have been dealt with expediently and far more successfully. There’s no point in re-litigating, But there’s even less point in pretending it doesn’t happen.

    • infused 2.2

      Yeah they do. Tech support do what they are asked.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        yes, that’s what tech support at the NSA do, at Verizon, Google and Yahoo! as well. How reassuring.

      • Lanthanide 2.2.2

        You seem to not know the idiom of “on a whim”.

        I’ll give you a hint: doing something “on a whim” is not the same as doing something “because you were asked to”.

        Or, more simply:
        “Tech support people just releasing information on a whim.” != “Tech support people just releasing information because they were asked to”.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 2.3

      But of course it will be ‘inadvertent’ or a ‘systemic problem’ and nobody is to blame

      Covers everything from Pike River to to phone tapping

      • King Kong 2.3.1

        Not this time.

        Aussie Russ looks pretty determined to see some poor, downtrodden and overworked public servant lose his job.

        Maybe the stress of the sacking will make him take his own life destroying the lives of the mans young family and condeming them to a life of abject poverty.

        There is blood on your hands Norman!!!

        • Arfamo 2.3.1.1

          I expect JK’s Chief of Staff would ensure his own family was reasonably comfortably provided for in the event of his unfortunate demise.

          • King Kong 2.3.1.1.1

            So if I went to the police and asked them to provide confidential files to a third party and they did, its my fault?

            • Arfamo 2.3.1.1.1.1

              Ask them to provide it to me, and after it’s happened we can discuss the issues from first hand experience.

            • Frank Macskasy 2.3.1.1.1.2

              “So if I went to the police and asked them to provide confidential files to a third party and they did, its my fault?”

              Depends what you do with it, KK.

              Let’s hope the Guvmint never spies on you, eh?

        • amirite 2.3.1.2

          Yeah because that servant acted on their own volition, no pressure from the PM’s office at all, eh? Yeah, pass that Tui bottle.

        • North 2.3.1.3

          Drama Queen KK !

    • SpaceMonkey 2.4

      That they’re technical people is irrelevant. They are a privately contracted resource who have had a public service function outsourced to them. They will do whatever their “customer” asks them to. And this, in a nutshell, is one of the problems with outsourcing the public service to private sector. It’s a change of ownership. Whereas the public service is beholden to the people, the private sector is beholden to whomever is paying them… in this case, Parliamentary Services senior management.

  3. Sosoo 3

    although to be fair Henry has refuted this.

    I think you mean “rebutted”.

    [Right you are. Changed]

  4. Sosoo 4

    It also speaks of something very sick and rotten at the heart of the country’s democracy. Whether the release was motivated by malice or ignorance, it adds up to a fundamental breach of press rights.

    Not really. NZ is just transitioning from a liberal democracy to an authoritarian democracy in which the mob does what it likes. Most people seem fine with this or at best indifferent to it, so Armstrong will soon discover that, like the rest of us, he’s pissing into the wind.

  5. Colonial Viper 5

    Henry denies having viewed the records, after they were compiled. I wonder if Key’s Chief of Staff, who requested the information, did.

  6. King Kong 6

    Key still has one ace up his sleeve. If things get too hot in the kitchen he can call a Labour leadership contest and the spotlight shifts.

    • Craig Glen viper 6.1

      Sadly KK is right for once. It hurts to say it but it is the truth .

      • Hami Shearlie 6.1.1

        Shearer certainly looks weak as water compared to Russel Norman. If David Cunliffe finally gets fed up and leaves before he can become leader , Labour will be down and out for a very very long time!

    • paul andersen 6.2

      yes , but now that the media have been spied on ,and shafted, how compliant will they be?obviously, turds like osullivan will still do as they are directed, but most in the media will be feeling pretty vindictive towards your johnny.

      • King Kong 6.2.1

        No they won’t.

        The parliamentary reporters have all spent time with Key and know him pretty well. Whilst you chaps believe him to be the reincarnation of Satan, they realise that he is a straight shooter who doesn’t need to resort to these kind of tactics to remain in power.

        Unfortunately this is just another public service fuck up.

        • Arfamo 6.2.1.1

          People say when you meet him he’s a decent bloke. But the problem is it’s no good Key being a decent bloke only when you meet him. We need a PM who’s a decent bloke all the time. He’ll have to go I’m afraid.

          • King Kong 6.2.1.1.1

            Brilliant.

            Thank you for that, it really made me giggle.

            • North 6.2.1.1.1.1

              How come you constantly live on the dark side KK ? And feverishly, gloatingly, applaud your surroundings and the goings on therein ? As “genius” and “masterstroke” and other such superlatives.

              Are you a sociopath ? Donald Rumsfeld on steriods ?

        • Colonial Viper 6.2.1.2

          Unfortunately this is just another public service fuck up.

          Originating in the Prime Minister’s office, with John Key’s Chief of Staff.

        • tricledrown 6.2.1.3

          Primitive primate Key has dug a very big hole for himself the more lies about spies the deeper it gets!

          • Arfamo 6.2.1.3.1

            I think the public servant stuff up line’s probably not really going to fly with the public or the journos on this one. We’ll see.

        • You_Fool 6.2.1.4

          The parliamentary reporters have all spent time with Key and know him pretty well. Whilst you chaps believe him to be the reincarnation of Satan, they realise that he is exactly that, but their bosses like the way he does business, and the reporters need to resort to the kind of kiss-ass shown previously to remain in a job.

          Fortunately this is a big National fuck up and may make the jonolists re-consider their positions.

          Fixed it for you…

        • Molly 6.2.1.5

          Jeesh, KK my twelve year old after watching JK online today: “John Key is not meant to be wonderful, he is the Prime Minister and he is meant to be doing the right thing. It doesn’t matter if he smiles all the time. ”

          He gets it. Why can’t you?

          • King Kong 6.2.1.5.1

            I hope you gave him an extra serving of mung beans for displaying just how well the indoctrination is working.

            I imagine he also has some pretty developed ideas on the females right to choose and the impending fall of neo liberalism.

            • Colonial Viper 6.2.1.5.1.1

              It seems like the gullible and brainwashed don’t even realise it.

            • North 6.2.1.5.1.2

              Oh God KK you really are an obstinate self-deluded lump of detritis. What the hell are you gonna say when Sir Kiwi Kim Dotcom produces the definitive proof that ShonKey Python misled the House, repeatedly ? Visual and audio proof KK. Upon which the said SP will resign and leave NZ virtually overnight. Back to his turangawaewae Wall Street/City of London.

              I daresay there’ll be a seamless transfer of affections to Judge Judy.

        • Frank Macskasy 6.2.1.6

          “…they realise that he is a straight shooter they realise that he is a straight shooter who doesn’t need to resort to these kind of tactics to remain in power. ”

          Bwahahahahahahahahaha…

    • tricledrown 6.3

      primitive peanut brained primate No doubt mugaabKeys spies have told you all about what going on inside other political parties!
      Lies and spies!
      Nixon and watergate i’m not a Crook spring to mind!
      Ever since key lied he has tried to cover it up with more deceit and lies
      now its coming back to haunt him big time boohooo its galvanised the left as well boo hoo
      stop crying in your beer monkey man have few peanuts or what about a cup tea with john banks

  7. Johnny 7

    Parliamentary Service gave Winston Peters Brendan Horan’s phone records and that MP was chucked out of the party for phone gambling. National got Aaron Gilmore’s phone records and after threatening to go to the Sunday papers with pics, after releasing txts, he resigned from Parliament altogether. Dunne had his records handed over. In western countries authorities usually need consent or warrants to get such personal data. In banana republics el presidente can do it by executive fiat. What we need is more than the Privileges inquiry, but a full and comprehensive review by the Privacy Commissioner and wrong doers brought before the Human Rights Review Tribunal and heavily fined. What we have here is systemic disregard for the constitution and rule of law from the Prime Minister down. The Parliamentary Service IS subject to the Privacy Act 1993, if not the OIA which is toothless anyway. The PA is not. The whole rotten bunch need kicking out. What else has been going on? Ye gods!!

    • “What else has been going on?”

      So true – this is just the tip of the dirty iceberg and for sure the rest of the murky dealings will probably never see the light of day. If this is what we can see and find out about then it should put the heebee geebees up anyone with half a mind.

  8. Craig Glen viper 8

    Its sad that so many in our media have turned a blind eye to all sorts of injustice’s, anti democratic and authotarian behaviour on the part of John Key / National Government towards New Zealanders. Who know’s maybe now that the Government is coming for them, they will finally start reporting facts instead of spin. I live in hope but Im not so sure the behaviour will change after all we have already had Tea gate.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Yes, the media could start acting independently and start challenging the Government narrative, OR it could decide to cosy up to the Government even more and become a full on Pravda-style PR industry.

      It’s really even odds.

    • King Kong 8.2

      Have you ever considered that perhaps the festering evil that you see everywhere might just be your feverish leftwing brains hopeful exagerations.
      Maybe the media are telling it like it is, in other words, it’s not the end of the world as we know it!

      • tricledrown 8.2.1

        KK is still crying in his beer the shit storm has just begun!

      • Arfamo 8.2.2

        Well the media seem to be telling it like it is on this particular issue. And they don’t seem to like what it is.

      • Craig Glen viper 8.2.3

        What I know is that National have been very good at manipulating the media.

        • King Kong 8.2.3.1

          Its called delivering a strong, coherent and unified message.

          Labour should give it a try some time.

          • Arfamo 8.2.3.1.1

            Labour’s trying to go one better and make the messages actual truth.

            • Blue 8.2.3.1.1.1

              If the message is mumbled it hardly has any coherence though. Frankly when Shearer stays on message he never looks convinced about what he’s saying.

      • weka 8.2.4

        Have you ever considered that perhaps the festering evil that you see everywhere might just be your feverish leftwing brains hopeful exagerations.
        Maybe the media are telling it like it is, in other words, it’s not the end of the world as we know it!

        I thought we’d covered this.

        The MSM.

        Or, the Law Society, the Human Rights Commission, the Privacy Commissioner, Harrison QC, Tech Liberty, Geoffry Palmer, Anne Salmond…. I’m sure that list will continue to grow.

        • North 8.2.4.1

          Oh c’mon Weka……..we know that KK’s answer to all of that will simply be – “Leftie bullshit love the game absolute genius yay idol ShonKey Python. !!!”

          KK’s catatonic with it and looking more the fruit loop with every contribution !

  9. tc 9

    Sure it’s the end of the honeymoon but it’s the continuation of a very convenient yet awkward marriage where neither should be together but are as it’s what their parents want being an arranged marriage to preserve the power etc.

    The MSM have rolled over or not even bothered time and again such as cuppa tea, tranzrail shares, blind trusts, throat slitting, wages dropping the list is sooo long from Blip it’s simply depressing.

    But hey this is all part of the plan, dumb em down make them feel it’s futile, keep them out of the booths and subject them to rat boy jonolism that garners the reality.

  10. Sable 10

    Hard to feel sorry for the bastards given they have helped to place National in office and keep them there. As to whether it will effect the relationship journalists have with Keys keep in mind its not really about them. The relationship is between Keys and their corporate “employers” who have a vested interest in Keys continuation in the PM’s role.

  11. Veutoviper 11

    Sir Geoffrey Palmer, in another excellent interview on Nine to Noon this morning, considered that the checking of phone records etc of Ministers by the Henry Inquiry was in itself a breach of Parliamentary Privilege.

    He covers this in the first two minutes or so of the interview, but the whole interview is well worth listening to as he gives an excellent overview of the history of the Parliamentary Services, their role, their culture and why they are not subject to the OIA (against his wishes at the time PS were set up).

    He also gives his views (not particularly complimentary) on how the Henry Inquiry was set up and its wide TORs, and Henry’s lack of legal qualifications; and on press freedom and the wider ramifications of the whole fiasco vis a vis democracy.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/2563981/phone-records-handed-over-during-gcsb-investigation

    If Palmer’s points are picked up (as they should be IMO) this can of worms gets bigger and bigger.

    [I am currently also re-reading the Henry Inquiry report to see what exactly it says re telephone records etc, who was contacted, spoke to etc. Here is a link to the report for anyone interested]

    http://www.beehive.govt.nz/sites/all/files/Henry%20Report.pdf

  12. Skinny 12

    This is politics folks- it’s what it’s all about. That landslide loss for National is looking better by the week as we roll on to the 2014 election. “It’s meta data on the hard drive…it’s money in the bank as a money trader would say.”

    The support eventually slips away with each fuck up revealed. But taking a stick to the press is beyond my wildest dreams. Go Johnny go!

    I told both Shearer & Cunliffe “the next election is theirs to loose regardless of who is the leader, that still stands.

  13. chris73 13

    “The end of the media honeymoon for John Key”

    – I guess if you say it enough times it’ll eventually become true

    • amirite 13.1

      Like this govt saying ” If you have nothing to hide, you’ve nothing to fear?”

      • chris73 13.1.1

        As long as its National saying it then I’m ok with it

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 13.1.1.1

          *headdesk*

          • weka 13.1.1.1.1

            When you see comments like 13.1.1 you have to start to wonder if the tin foil hat wearing chapter of the anti-fluoride debate aren’t right after all.

    • mickysavage 14.1

      Yep fascinating. The underlying theme is that Key’s Chief of Staff made Parliamentary Services an offer that it felt it could not refuse. Rule by Prime Ministerial fiat is just around the corner …

      • calltoaccount 14.1.1

        Although there’s a getout by JK, the CoS meant the Ministers’ data to be realeased, not Vance’s. Silly error. Watertight lie or not, what do you reckon?

        • mickysavage 14.1.1.1

          It could be that the release of Vance’s data was not intended but Henry’s statement jars with Dunne’s claim that Henry said that he wanted to compare Dunne’s call data with Vance’s call data.

          It may be that Parliamentary Services was that terrified that it handed over Vance’s data without thinking about whether it should or not.

          There is still a stench to it.

          I see that Tracy Watkins is asking questions about who leaked the information to Winston Peters.

          • Pascal's bookie 14.1.1.1.1

            Here’s the email Key tabled between the inquiry and PS.

            Note the list of Ministers does not include Dunne.

            http://t.co/6iUtMg5nXt

            • mickysavage 14.1.1.1.1.1

              There has to be another email. And you have to wonder why this email was tabled and not the other one …

              • yeshe

                Micky — Key was quoting from it but only tabled it on request via the speaker by David Parker, (I think, but not sure), but certainly only under questioning from the opposition, who also a little while later when they had it to read, questioned how much had been redacted. Key did not look comfortable.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.2

        Rule by Prime Ministerial fiat is just around the corner …

        Is this what Key had in mind for a “Constitutional Review”?

        President John Key.

  14. georgecom 15

    Has anyone seen a headline in the NZH screaming ‘Democracy under attack’ yet?

  15. Blue 16

    When democracy is under attack I’m sure you will.

    • Craig Glen viper 16.1

      The “Supercity” democracy already gone just in case you forgot Blue

  16. tc 17

    I spy with my little eye, some Public servants being prepared to be fried.

    You know this game, one of us has to go and it isn’t me as I’m the king, see ya been nice I’ll find a trough later you can shove your snout in.

  17. AmaKiwi 18

    Hey, John Key, here’s a glimpse at your “brighter future” – 2014 with Kim Dotcom’s extradition hearing.

    • tricledrown 18.1

      2014 key rides off into the sunset to Hawaii but just by coincidence kim Dotcom is on the same plane!

  18. Jenny 19

    Democracy under attack

    Illegally gathered private data,
    Used as leverage,
    To corrupt the political process,
    Gains Dunne’s vote,
    To allow the gathering of even more private data,
    To further corrupt the political process.

    Winston Peters was put on the spot tonight on TV3. Peters was asked to explain how he knew what was in the Dunne/Vance emails. A brief look of discomfiture crossed Peters’ face, before he grinned and came up with a smart-alec answer: “It is my job to know”.

    But how did Peters know? Peters was asked again. He refused to answer.

    It is becoming increasingly clear that Dunne’s vote to support the GCSB Bill was achieved with pressure verging on blackmail.

    The Dunce/Vance email exchange was shown to Winston Peters and the P.M.

    Peters intimates, that the content of the emails will be personally embarrassing if not publicly distressing for Dunne. The threat behind this limited release by those who did it, “Was watch it Dunne, or we will release the whole lot to everyone”.

    To allow the gathering of even more private data,
    More private data,
    To further corrupt the political process.

    As the probe into how the Vance/Dunne Data was misused, delves deeper to find an answer. Will the secret operators behind this scandal be finally flushed into the open?

    Stay tuned.

  19. yeshe 20

    Poor Mrs Dunne; what a trap she must be in.

    Peters said more recently on Q&A that was very revealing — said of Dunne, “There is no fool like an old fool” .. an unmistakeable insinuation.

    • Arfamo 20.1

      Nah. Just a classic Winnie dogwhistle. Vague insinuation. Doesn’t actually tell you anything. But if just about anything damning of any kind now does fall out of the woodwork, Winnie can say “told you so”.

  20. Jenny 21

    David Shearer gets it right.

    http://www.labour.org.nz/news/pm-clueless-about-gcsb%E2%80%99s-snooping-for-henry-inquiry

    “John Key told Parliament today that the Henry report was sent to the head of the GCSB (as it related to the Kitteridge report into the Bureau), and to the best of the Prime Minister’s knowledge that was the only role the GCSB played.

    “But on page 16 of the Henry report, in Appendix Three, it quite clearly states:

    “Substantial assistance, particularly in the gathering of records, was also provided by staff at GCSB…”

    David Shearer

    This raises a number of questions:

    John Key is the Minister responsible for the GCSB. Was he not aware that the DCSG is still continuing to spy on New Zealanders in violation of the law, even in parliament?

    Or, was he aware and decided to lie about it?

    And how about the illegal spying on the 88 New Zealanders identified in the Kitteridge report. Is that still going on too?

    Is this the reason for the rush to get the new legislation through?

    That the illegal spying on New Zealanders by the GCSB has not faltered or slowed down one bit, but is still continuing. And John Key needs to get the laws in quick before they are found out.

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    A cry for help from New Zealand’s longest-running crisis line highlights chronic underfunding of the sector by the Government, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Lifeline is THE go-to helpline for people in crisis, taking up to 180,000 calls each ...
    2 days ago
  • Five months too long for homeless to wait
    New figures revealing homeless people registered with Work and Income are waiting an average of 155 days to be housed shows the Government is totally overwhelmed by the housing crisis, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “What’s worse is ...
    3 days ago
  • Minister in cloud cuckoo land
    Hekia Parata needs a very big reality check if she truly believes every parent has the choice of sending their child to a private school, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Questioned in the House today about plans to pump ...
    3 days ago
  • Convention centre failure means years of uncertainty for CBD
    The failure of Gerry Brownlee’s planned convention centre deal leaves Christchurch facing uncertainty about when activity will be restored to the CBD, says Labour’s Canterbury spokesperson Megan Woods. “As one of the CBD’s major anchor projects, the convention centre complex ...
    3 days ago
  • PCE proves water quality still deteriorating
    The PCE State of the Environment Report shows that river water quality is continuing to get worse across large parts of New Zealand, says Labour’s Environment and Water spokesperson David Parker. “Water quality has deteriorated in Canterbury, Central Otago, Auckland, ...
    3 days ago
  • Families with new babies victims of today’s veto
    Families with new babies are the victims of an historical “first” for the New Zealand Parliament today. “For the first time ever, a Bill will have a third reading debate and no vote will be taken at the end because ...
    3 days ago
  • Crime on the rise…again!
    The Police Minister’s contention that Police have enough resources to meet the expectations of New Zealand communities is not reflected in the Police’s own statistics, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “Yet again, reported burglaries have increased in every region ...
    3 days ago
  • Private schools beneficiaries of extra cash
    Plans to give more taxpayer money to private schools at a time when state schools are struggling to make ends meet says everything about the National Government’s twisted priorities, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Not only did this year’s ...
    4 days ago
  • Inequality getting worse under National
    Inequality is getting worse under National with almost 60 per cent of the wealth in this country concentrated in the hands of the top 10 per cent according to Statistics NZ figures released today, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. ...
    4 days ago
  • Government freezes elderly out of insulation subsidy
    Government cuts to the Warm Up New Zealand insulation subsidy means it will now only be available for rental properties and could leave many elderly homeowners cold this winter, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “In this year’s Budget the Government ...
    5 days ago
  • Shewan report delivers rebuke to National
    John Shewan’s report into foreign trusts is a rebuke to John Key and the National Party who have protected an industry that has damaged New Zealand’s reputation, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Three years ago the Inland Revenue Department ...
    5 days ago
  • Auckland Airport rail analysis must be made public
    The Government should publicly release its detailed analysis of rail to Auckland Airport before it closes off options, so the public can have an informed debate, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. The Transport Agency today said it is ...
    5 days ago
  • Minister approved OIO consent despite death and investigations
    Louise Upston must say if she knew Intueri was being prosecuted for the death of a student and under a funding investigation when she approved its overseas investment consent to buy another education provider, says Labour’s Land Information and Associate ...
    6 days ago
  • Brexit vote costs NZ effective EU voice
    Despite being extremely close the result of the referendum in Britain reflects the majority voice, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “While we respect the decision to leave the EU, it goes without saying the move will usher in ...
    1 week ago
  • Pasifika Education Centre doomed
    The Pasifika Education Centre appears doomed to close down this December, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio  “In a written question I asked the Minister whether he would put a bid in for more money. His answer ...
    1 week ago
  • Onetai Station review a shameful whitewash
    A report released today on the Overseas Investment Office’s (OIO) good character test is a whitewash that does nothing to improve New Zealand’s overseas investment regime, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson David Cunliffe. “The review of the good character test ...
    1 week ago
  • We need a national strategy to end homelessness now
    Long before I entered Parliament, housing and homelessness were issues dear to my heart. I know from personal experience just how hard it is to find an affordable home in Auckland. In my maiden speech, I talked about how when ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Capital feels a chill economic wind
      Wellington is on the cusp of recession with a sharp fall in economic confidence in the latest Westpac McDermott Miller confidence survey, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Clark.  “Economic confidence amongst Wellingtonians has dropped 12% in the past ...
    1 week ago
  • Dive school rort took six years to dredge up
    News that yet another private training establishment (PTE) has rorted the Government’s tertiary funding system since 2009 shows that Steven Joyce has no control of the sector, says Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe. “Like Agribusiness Training and Taratahi, ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s housing crisis hitting renters hard
    National’s ongoing housing crisis is causing massive rental increases, with Auckland renters being hit the hardest, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    1 week ago
  • A Day with the PSA
    This week, along with Labour MP Kris Faafoi, I accepted an invitation to spend a day working alongside the good folk at the Public Service Association in Wellington. As the Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson for the Greens, I was ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • A Day with the PSA
    This week, along with Labour MP Kris Faafoi, I accepted an invitation to spend a day working alongside the good folk at the Public Service Association in Wellington. As the Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson for the Greens, I was ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • Government holds Northland back
    New information shows Northland remains the most economically depressed region in New Zealand, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Clark. “The latest Westpac McDermott Miller regional survey found that more Northlanders believe their local economy will deteriorate this year than ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebstock report into MFAT leaks a disgrace
    An Ombudsman’s report on the Paul Rebstock investigation into MFAT leaks shows the two diplomats at the centre of the case were treated disgracefully, says Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi.  “The Ombudsman says one of the diplomats Derek Leask ...
    1 week ago
  • More families forced to turn to food banks for meals
    Increasing numbers of families are having to go to food banks just to put a meal on the table, according to a new report that should shame the Government into action, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    1 week ago
  • We have a housing emergency in New Zealand
    Auckland, New Zealand, where house prices have risen 20 percent in the last year alone We have a housing emergency in New Zealand.  Like many people we are ashamed and angry that in a wealthy country like ours, we have ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • We have a housing emergency in New Zealand
    Auckland, New Zealand, where house prices have risen 20 percent in the last year alone We have a housing emergency in New Zealand.  Like many people we are ashamed and angry that in a wealthy country like ours, we have ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Aussie reforms signal trouble ahead for school funding plan
    Plans by the Government to return to bulk funding are likely to see increased class sizes and schools most in need missing out on much-needed resources, Labour’s Acting Education spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The signaled return to bulk funding is ...
    1 week ago
  • Toxic Sites – the down low on the go slow
    In  2011, I negotiated an agreement with the National Government to advance work on cleaning up contaminated sites across the country. This included establishing a National Register of the ten worst sites where the creators of the problem could not ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Aucklanders face new motorway tax of up to $2500 a year
    The Government wants to tax Aucklanders thousands of dollars a year just to use the motorway network, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Officials estimate the average city commute is 11.8km. This means for the average Aucklander commuting five ...
    1 week ago
  • 15 corrupt bank managers identified in student fraud
    New information show 15 bank managers in India have been identified by Immigration New Zealand as presenting fraudulent documents on behalf of foreign students studying here, Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Documents obtained by Labour under the Official Information ...
    1 week ago
  • National leaves Kiwi savers the most vulnerable in OECD
    News last week that Israel’s Finance Minister will insure savers’ bank deposits means New Zealand will be left as the only country in the OECD that has no deposit insurance to protect savers’ funds should a bank fail. Most Kiwis ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    2 weeks ago
  • Comprehensive plan for future of work needed
    A Massey University study showing many New Zealanders are unaware of the increasing role of automation in their workplace, highlights the need for a comprehensive plan for the future of work, says Grant Robertson, Chair of Labour’s Future of Work ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another National Government failure: 90 day work trials
    On Friday last week, the Treasury released a report by MOTU economic consultants into the effectiveness of the controversial 90-day work trial legislation. The report found that there was “no evidence that the policy affected the number of hires by ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 weeks ago
  • Iraq mission extension case not made
    The Prime Minister has not made the case for extending the Iraq deployment another 18 months nor the expansion of their mission, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “Labour originally opposed the deployment because the Iraqi Army’s track record was poor, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Denial is a long river
    William Rolleston from Federated Farmers made the absurd claim on RNZ on Saturday that “we actually have very clean rivers”. This statement doesn’t represent the many farmers who know water quality is in big trouble and are working to clean ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Denial is a long river
    William Rolleston from Federated Farmers made the absurd claim on RNZ on Saturday that “we actually have very clean rivers”. This statement doesn’t represent the many farmers who know water quality is in big trouble and are working to clean ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Melanoma deaths could be avoided by an early access scheme
      The tragic death of Dunedin’s Graeme Dore from advanced Melanoma underlines the cruelty of this Government in promising a treatment but delaying for months, says Labour’s Health Spokesperson Annette King.  “Graeme was diagnosed with Melanoma last year. He used ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Assessing the Defence White Paper
    The Government’s recently released Defence White Paper has raised questions again about New Zealand’s defence priorities, and in particular the level and nature of public funding on defensive capabilities. The Green Party has a longstanding belief that priority must be ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwis’ confidence drops again: Economy needs a boost
    Westpac’s consumer confidence survey has fallen for the seventh time in nine quarters, with middle income households ‘increasingly worried about where the economy is heading over the next few years’, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This survey is a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Relocation grant simply kicks can down the road
    The response by state house tenants and social agencies to the Government’s rushed plan to shift families out of Auckland tells us what we already knew – this is no answer to the chronic housing shortage, Opposition Leader Andrew Little ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Peace hīkoi to Parihaka
    On Friday a Green crew walked with the peace hīkoi from Ōkato to Parihaka. Some of us were from Parliament and some were party members from Taranaki and further afield. It was a cloudy but gentle day and at one ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Children’s Commissioner right to worry about CYF transition
    The Government must listen to the Children’s Commissioner’s concerns that young people under CYF care could be ‘negatively impacted’ as the new agency’s reforms become reality, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern. “Dr Russell Wills has used the second annual ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill English exaggerates PPL costs to justify veto
    The Finance Minister has used trumped-up costings to justify a financial veto against parents having 26 weeks paid parental leave, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “Bill English’s assertion on RNZ yesterday that the measure would cost an extra $280 million ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must refund overcharged motorists
    Labour is calling on the Government to refund motor registration fees to three-quarters of a million Kiwi motorists whose vehicles were wrongly classified under National’s shambolic ACC motor vehicle risk rating system, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says.“Minister Kaye’s ridiculous ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 90-day work trials an unfair failure which must change
    A new Treasury report shows the Government’s 90-day trials haven’t helped businesses and are inherently unfair, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “The Motu report found that 90-day trial periods had no impact on overall employment and did not ...
    2 weeks ago

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