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Key fails to guard the guardians

Written By: - Date published: 8:41 pm, September 27th, 2012 - 87 comments
Categories: john key, Spying - Tags: ,

Oversight of a nation’s security agencies is vital to democracy. Our government’s spies are overseen by two people – the Prime Minister and the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security. According the to government narrative, the former asked the latter to investigate he found out the GCSB had been illegally spying on two Kiwis. And, guess what, the report blamed underlings. It didn’t even investigate the question of whether their oversight was up to scratch.

The short, pathetic little report that Neazor produced (and which Key sat on for two days) fails to address any significant questions. According to the official narrative, some GCSB people fucked up by believing the incompetent Police who told them that Dotcom wasn’t a permanent resident and misreading their own legislation. To make sure you got the line – it called the law “confusing” or referred to GSBC “confusion” a good half a dozen times.

Fuck up or malice, it’s a breach of the law and those people should be prosecuted. But how did it get to that? And how did it, officially, not get discovered for eight months? That’s a question of oversight.

Neazor,as Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security is meant to be provide active monitoring – going in and checking out the GCSB’s activities, who they’re spying on, how they’re using their warrants. He says he goes to their offices regularly. When did he first learn that they had spied on Dotcom – not that the spying was illegal, but that it had happened (which should have triggered questions from him over whether Dotcom is a permanent resident)? The report is silent on that.

Then, there’s Key. As Minister of the GCSB, Key has ministerial powers and duties that are extraordinary. Ordinarily, ministers are not meant to get involved in the day to day affairs of ministries but the GCSB Act says: “The performance of the Bureau’s functions is subject to the control of the Minister.” Key has to sign off on every warrant that the GCSB requests and has to “control” the organisation, even its activities that don’t require warrants (the spying on Dotcom would have fallen into this category – except it was illegal with or without warrant to spy on a NZ resident).

Where was that “control”? Did Key ever ask if the GCSB was involved in the Dotcom raids? Did he ask in those monthly meetings with the GCSB (and why didn’t they raise it)? Did he ask when he was told about the Dotcom raid the day before it happened – when Key claims he first heard Dotcom’s name? Did he ask then which agencies were involved? The report is silent.

The report doesn’t even tell us when the GCSB worked out that it had spied on Dotcom illegally.

It’s a whitewash. And that just raised the question: what are the failed guardians trying to hide? Even if it is their own incompetence, it is a resignation level offence.

87 comments on “Key fails to guard the guardians”

  1. xtasy 1

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CvRSZxqk_I

    Nothing to fear, nothing to declare, no knowlegde, no, nada, nix, know nothing, nix of this, I don’t know who gave me money, don’t know nothing about Dotcom, don’t know about the raid, don’t know about search warrants or any such things, aye?

    John Key, have you any conscience, and this man lives in YOUR electorate, he is is registered VOTER, I believe!

    • Greg Doolan 1.1

      So sad to see on TV 6 o’clock News Green Party leader Russell Norman be the media’s go to opposition POV on this and other prime opportunities. The invisible Labour leader remains holed up in a bunker surrounded by sycophants who reassure him that his clothing is majestic.Labour’s seeming irrelevance has reached an all time low.

      • xtasy 1.1.1

        Shearer heard that Russel Norman said something, so bang, soon after he added his bit.

        Yes, this is not the man that should lead Labour, as he may make a good minister of education, but he is NOT up to the top job. The NZ public are let down with a too weak opposition leadership.

        Sad and disappointing all this.

  2. David H 2

    So whitewash seems to be the new colour of the National Party.

  3. Gruntie 3

    It’s horse shit to say it is incompetence or a mistake – anyone with half a brain and s touch of insight can work out it is a deliberate breach of the law in order to aid and abet the FBI and the CIA – simple as that – and it shouldn’t be a surprize – the GSCB and the SIS do this shit all the time – only difference is that this ended up in a court and was subject to scruitiney by lawyers not sold out.

    • Jenny 3.1

      It’s horse shit to say it is incompetence or a mistake – anyone with half a brain and s touch of insight can work out it is a deliberate breach of the law in order to aid and abet the FBI and the CIA

      Gruntie

      Absolutely, Gruntie.

      There is more than enough overseas experience to show that US intelligence agencies, have a deliberate foreign policy of subverting and infiltrating the intelligence services and law enforcement agencies of other countries for their own purposes. Encouraging them to ignore the government’s they serve, and to disregard the rights of the people they are paid to protect.

      When it comes to upholding the law, the intelligence agencies are more busy looking to the interests of the Western hemisphere foreign powers they are covertly linked to.

      Making them completely useless against, and blind to, terrorism arising from this source. So it proved in the Rainbow Warrior bombing.

      • Jenny 3.1.1

        Of course the other notorious proof of our secret intelligence services covert links to Western hemisphere intelligence agencies, was the Ahmed Zowie case.

        Against all the evidence that Ahmed Zowie was a peacefully democratically elected political refugee deposed in a bloody coup by a military regime and sentenced in absentia to death on his return.

        The SIS instead chose to believe (still unrevealed) secret evidence arising from within the French Secret Service.

        (The very same state agency responsible for the Rainbow Warrior bombing).

        Despite the fact that the French State and Frencgh Secret Services had links to the military leaders that had deposed the democratically elected government in Algeria, the SIS did everything in their power to aid that state to return Zowie to his probable torture and death.

  4. karol 4

    It’s not over til the big man sings. Kim Dotcom to John key:

    https://twitter.com/KimDotcom/status/251175318856036352

    @JohnKeyPM, I accept your apology. Show your sincerity by supporting a full, transparent & independent inquiry into the entire Mega case.
    [ 5 hours ago]

    https://twitter.com/KimDotcom/status/251181803904307200

    @JohnKeyPM, show the world that your government is not an American dancing bear & that fairness & due process matter in New Zealand.
    [4 hours ago]

  5. xtasy 5

    Excuse me, dear NZers, as a migrant, not never wanting any trouble, I gathered my own experiences with:

    NZ Police,
    Immigration NZ,
    NZ Labour Department,
    ACC,
    IRD,
    Studylink,
    Ministry of Social Development,
    Ministry of Health and ADHB,
    Housing NZ,
    Department of Courts,
    Department of Internal Affairs AND

    others!

    I have come across many cases of incompetence, wrongdoing, cover-ups, false accusations, malpractice, abuse, neglect, criminal negligence and much, much more. I am sorry, I hate to be a bit of a “stinker”, but really, there is so much going on here, which would be unacceptable in most developed countries, yet it always gets “excused away” as “once off”, “single” cases, it is not bloody funny.

    It is time that this government, and others for that bloody sake, get real, take their responsibilities seriously, do not break laws, do not neglect people and their rights, welfare and so, and act in a manner that is responsible, accountable and to some fair degree transparent.

    The latter is apparently going to be abolished, as government and it’s departments and ministries want to cover up and do away with accountabilities. I have some real bloody stuff to uncover, and you better get your f-ing business right, right now, I suggest to all those concerned. Otherwise I will see you at the court soon, thank you, bull shit government, the Crown and whatever you call yourselves.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      I think corruption is far more endemic to NZ than most (including me) would have assumed even just a few years ago. The shear stink of it coming from NACT in the last few weeks must be (hopefully) waking up quite a few people though.

      …yet it always gets “excused away” as “once off”, “single” cases, it is not bloody funny.

      That wouldn’t surprise me. I think that the concept of breaking the rules for the right cause is possibly a generally accepted idea. It’s certainly an idea that I was raised with and I’ve seen such messages coming through in the MSM news. The problem with it is that people will always believe that they’re breaking the rules for the right cause.

    • King Kong 5.2

      Go home then

      • Billy Fish 5.2.1

        Dear
        KK
        ddaaah duh
        ya mouth breather

      • xtasy 5.2.2

        King Kong: What is “home”, when I spent half my life here and half my life somewhere else, NatACT fan with red neck?

        Your chosen “pseudo” gives me a hint about the size of grey matter.

      • xtasy 5.2.3

        Be proud of your country, yeah right:

        Where a person I know got arrested for questionable reasons at a protest, and then was punched in the face twice by police officers – while handcuffed – when being pushed into a cell; all charges were later thrown out – by a judge actually known for his “hard” line!!!?;
        where a complaint to the Independent Police Conduct Authority later lets the cops involved off, as they denied all knowledge, as CTV records were not kept, as the affected person had no witness, all leading to none, and due to also the IPCA usually handing “investigations” back to the police;
        where the Office of Ombudsmen lets a leading government off the hook for only providing very small amounts of information sought under the O.I.A.;
        where the same office sits for 6 months on another complaint about staff working at a health board, who acted in a mnner of criminal negligence when allowing an abuse victim with mental health problems to be “looked after” by the very abuser as “caregiver”; they did NOTHING for 6 months, and only after unanswered emails, a number of phone calls, was it finally looked at; the health board refused to make information available under O.I.A. and Privacy Act;
        when a complaint about professional misconduct to the Health and Disability Commissioner is first tried to be rejected in an attempted “white wash”, and when after an O.I.A. request to their legal department they officially look at it again, but NO answer being given for 14 months now, apparently trying to find another way to “protect” an incompetent health care provider from prosecution;
        when endless emails with highly sensitive and exposing information to some senior journalists of mainstream media do apparently not get followed up, ignored and no story getting written, as this may expose serious legal breaches by government agencies ….

        when you see and hear such stuff, it makes it clear to me, that NZ is a corrupt and “old boys network” country indeed!

        Only due to Dotcom being such a public, high rating figure, only due to his case being such a huge one, and only due to him and his expert legal team digging into stuff, is this becoming public.

        If it was “joe average”, it would all have been covered up and have not consequences for all law breakers involved.

        The same applies to the Bronwyn Pullar story about the illegal and highly questionable processes followed by ACC. If it had not involved such a high level personality, it would never have been reported on.

        And what about WiNZ and a biased Principal Health Advisor and law breaches there re med. assessments? Nothing gets said or addressed.

        So be “proud” of all such crap going on. Send your young men also to Afghanistan to get blown up and shot for trying to bail out the US and their agendas. But the public thinks it is all for the right cause, right? What a sick joke indeed!

  6. toad 6

    Neazor was always horribly conflicted. He had the role as Inspector-General of monitoring the GCSB’s activities. Key asking him to report on obviously illegal activities, which Neazor had miserably failed to monitor, would always result in Neazor covering his own arse above anything else.

    Key should have appointed another current or retired Judge to undertake the investigation, preferably someone like Justice Ted Thomas who had the courage to rat on a fellow Judge (Justice William Young) whom he considered had acted corruptly and with conflict of interest and who subsequently resigned in disgrace.

    • toad 6.1

      Bugger, I meant Justice Bill Wilson. Apols to Justice William Young. Can someone on the moderating team fix this – I am seriously embarrassed by the error,

      • mickysavage 6.1.1

        No problems Toad the effect of your comments are perfectly clear and relevant.

        This is a total clusterfuck.  If the system has got it this bad then it is irrelevant to blame the underlings.  They should be analyzing the system because it is clearly not working. 

        • Brooklyn 6.1.1.1

          No. Not clusterfuck, not ignorance. Sinister is what it is. It’s the GCSB and perhaps the PM too thinking “who gives a shit, no one will notice” and it’s the people who think ” Kim.com is a fat dodgy foreigner so who gives a fuck” when it’s actually one less thing which separates us from North Korea. Urewera anyone? Bash down the doors of anarchist bicycle repair men? Who next? Conform or face the consequences.

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1

            Correct. Incompetence may play some role, but if it does it is more along the lines of an ill conceived, devious plan bordering on the corrupt coming unstuck at some unexpected point.

            And now Key is in a hard to recover tailspin.

            This keeps up and you will see his Money Masters move on very quickly. Assets are kept; liabilities are disposed of.

            • mike 6.1.1.1.1.1

              When people question a sociopath’s lies, the only way they know how to respond is with more lies. They are also skilled at making their opponent look and feel stupid for questioning. But when you are the PM there are people who actually check the things you say. That’s why Key is so enamoured with the “I’m not in a position to answer that question” lines – he says nothing and kills the question. It’s also why he thought he was so clever not reading the Banks police report. To the rest of us it’s a childish defence, but to Key it’s a winner.

              People here have liked him to Sgt. Schultz, “I know nuttink!”, but someone else mentioned Bart Simposon’s classic “I didn’t do it, no one saw me do it, there’s no way you can prove anything.” I think that’s more on the money.

          • muzza 6.1.1.1.2

            Indeed this kind of brazen exposure is of sinister goings-on. This is really just childs play though compared to the real hard core stuff the “intelligence” communities globally get up to.

            People who might be scepticle about other “things” they consider to be “conspiracy”, have a front row seat at one, because this is what we have here!

            It is simply non negotiable that NZ has now officially declared itself a banana republic to the world!

    • Mary 6.2

      I agree that the report is weak and doesn’t address any of the important issues, but those issues stem from questions that are more political than anything else so don’t easily fall within the role of the inspector-general. Neazor was just carrying out a duty within what is a fairly narrow role under s 11(1)(da) of the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Act which says

      “…to review the effectiveness and appropriateness of the procedures adopted by the Government Communications Security Bureau to ensure compliance with the provisions of Part 3 of the Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003 in relation to the issue and execution of interception warrants and computer access authorisations:”

      If you want the answers to the big questions that could show precisely why the GCSB were involved (and hopefully whether Key has lied) then you need a report with a bigger brief. Neazor didn’t have that brief and in any case the Act cannot give it to him. So keep doing what you’re doing by calling for a wider inquiry which will necessarily need someone not restrained by the confines of the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Act. But stop saying that Neazor has a conflict of interest. In this particular case he doesn’t and going on about it will get you nowhere. The problem lies elsewhere therefore your remedy does, too. Just go for that wider inquiry and make sure it’s done by someone who’s got the grunt to really get amongst it and I’m sure you’ll find some joy.

      • yeshe 6.2.1

        dame sylvia cartwright would be brilliant .. such a revealing inquiry she chaired in the national women’s hospital chaos.

  7. tc 7

    ‘Key fails to guard the guardians’…he’ll throw anyone to the wolves before he’s forced to face the consequences of his actions,all part of protecting the hollow brand.

    A deliberate lack of decisive action/decision is an action in it’s own right, as they say in management to choose to do nothing is making a decision…well done old boy.

  8. Bunnykinz 8

    “some GCSB people fucked up by believing the incompetent Police who told them that Dotcom wasn’t a permanent resident”

    My understanding of how this particular “debacle” (National must be worried about how often the MSM is now using this word in conjunction with their activities) came about was NOT that the Police told the GSCB that Dotcom was not a permanent resident BUT that GCSB asked the Police if Dotcom IS a foreign national to which they replied “Yes”, which is a whole different kettle of fish (I assume that Dotcom is still a German citizen?). So it seems more that it was a poorly worded query on the GCSB’s part. Still doesn’t change the fact that this was a massive clusterfuck on an international level. But you know, it is all semantics.

    Of course I might be wrong, but this was my understanding of how it kicked off.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      Thing is, we don’t actually know what the exact question was or even if there was a question. Both the police and the GCSB should have known who they were dealing with before they started spying on him for the FBI.

      • Bunnykinz 8.1.1

        Ahh, right. My impression is probably due to poor reporting (or my mis-reading). Although STUFF reported that the documents state “GCSB sought assurance that all the persons of interest were foreign nationals. OFCANZ gave that assurance”.

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/national/7723520/Spies-given-wrong-info-on-Dotcom-papers

        Can’t really figure out what “the documents” they are refering to, but again, states that they sought assurances that they were foreign nationals, not that they were permanent residents/citizens.

        • Rich 8.1.1.1

          I suspect that the police, knowing that GCSB couldn’t target NZ residents, provided a deliberately ambiguous statement of Dotcom’s immigration status. GCSB came to the party by taking a generous interpretation of this and not enquiring further. Deliberate collusion to evade the law, basically.

          The government should release the text of the correspondence between GCSB and Police (OFCANZ).

      • Colonial Viper 8.1.2

        Yep. It’s the ABC’s. These alphabet soup outfits should be good at the ABC’s, right?

  9. karol 9

    The Neazor Report and GCSB clusterfrak seems to part of a pattern of an increasingly Secret Government, thumbing its nose at democracy:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7740266/Agencies-stonewall-on-OIA-requests

    Government agencies are increasingly trying to keep information secret, the office charged with ensuring fair access to public information says.

    The Office of the Ombudsman, whose tasks include regulating the release of information under the Official Information Act (OIA), outlined concerns in its annual report presented to Parliament yesterday.

    Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem said there was a worrying trend of agencies trying to seek exemption from the act.

    • muzza 9.1

      Laying the foundations for what we will get when the TPPA come into “force”

      Then the public will not be getting a sliver of information “commercial sensitivity” , will become even more rife than it is currently.

      Democracy they call it …

    • Dr Terry 9.2

      This Government is no more democratic than it is ethical.

  10. BM 10

    I have a feeling Dotcom will be extradited back to the states,the fat German slug is not worth the hassle.
    Unless the guy wants to spend the next 20 years behind bars in some shitty US jail, the best thing he could do is shut his mouth and keep a low profile.

    • Kotahi Tāne Huna 10.1

      If he can be illegally harassed with impunity then so can anyone. If the allegations against him are true, how does that excuse public servants disregard (or worse) for the law?

      • BM 10.1.1

        From what I read, they misinterpreted the definition of what a resident was,nothing devious or underhanded
        Anyway Schmit is a shifty untrustworthy mother fucker who’s caused endless hassles and is getting in the way with his bullshit, how he made the grade to be considered for residency I will never know.
        The sooner he’s out of the country the better, he has nothing of value to add to NZ.

        • marsman 10.1.1.1

          BM – ‘is a shifty untrustwothy mother fucker who’s caused endless hassles and is getting away with his bullshit’ describes John Key to a t, how he made the grade to be considered for PM no one will ever know.

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.2

          From what I read, they misinterpreted the definition of what a resident was,nothing devious or underhanded

          hey BM since its a core part of their charter for decades, please explain how the SIS and the GCSB might possibly have “misinterpreted the definition” this time around.

          Are you suggesting that they’ve somehow been fucking this up for years and they’ve been illegally spying all this time?

          • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1.2.1

            Exactly, If, and it’s a big ‘if’, they are telling the truith anf just didn’t understand the limits around who they could spy on, then who else has been affected?

          • BM 10.1.1.2.2

            It seems the law and processes around becoming or resident or defining what a resident is has become a confusing pile of contradictions which is leading to confusion
            The way I see it, if a department trips up on something as basic as “What is a the definition of a NZ resident”, I think the whole thing needs a total rewrite.

            • Kotahi Tāne Huna 10.1.1.2.2.1

              Um bullshit. Your difficulty in understanding the Immigration (Visa, Entry Permission, and Related Matters) Regulations 2010 is evidence of nothing.

              • BM

                What about the Minister of Pornographys involvement in the Bill Liu drama, I’m sure he was totally above board and did nothing illegal.

                Fairly obvious he just misinterpreted what must be a confusing pile of rules and regulations.Pitfalls everywhere.

                • Kotahi Tāne Huna

                  Who cares what you are sure about?

                  I note that the person charged with making sure the GCSB doesn’t screw up is a retired High Court judge, used to dealing with complex legislation, and further, that this situation doesn’t apply to a residency application, it applies to an extradition warrant.

          • BloodyOrphan 10.1.1.2.3

            “Are you suggesting that they’ve somehow been fucking this up for years and they’ve been illegally spying all this time?”

            YES

          • insider 10.1.1.2.4

            Immigration law changed a couple of years ago as to who is defined as a resident. They trusted the advice of the Police/OCANZ and did not apply/seem aware of the new definition (even though the GCSB Act was updated to reflect the 2009 Immigration Act), which is why Key probably explicitly criticised the GCSB legal team. That lack of awareness of the change could indicate that they don’t do this kind of thing that often (silver lining and all that…).

            • BloodyOrphan 10.1.1.2.4.1

              They changed heaps of laws a couple of years ago,
              They are blind Fools, who mis represented a critical figure at negotiations and are now reaping the reward.
              They thought it was bloddy Marketing freakin idiots.
              Those countires would have known it too, even would’ve tried to counsel them on it I’d imagine.
              No wonder Hillary was laughing at them.
              Australia would’ve sat there in shocked silence I’d imagine, God bless them too they are bloody good people, somethin to do with their origins they tell us, they are a leat mastering their evil past.

        • Kotahi Tāne Huna 10.1.1.3

          @BM: who cares what you read,? He was subjected to illegal harassment (state surveillance and an armed raid). I don’t care whether it was malice or Gilbert and Sullivan levels of incompetence.

          I note that your personal feelings about residency applicants carry zero weight, and while they say nothing whatsoever about their target, they speak volumes about you.

        • Fortran 10.1.1.4

          BM

          According to the Neazor report which I have read Dotcom is either a German Ciitizen or a Finnish one.
          He is in New Zealand after having deposited $10 mill in NZ Govt stock.
          He has an entry in one or both of his passports which allows him NZ residency.
          If he were to go overseas (to try and unlock his overseas money) he may not find in say Hong Kong, where he has hundreds of millions locked up, that they will be sympathetic to his NZ rubber stamp and may extradite him to US.
          He will not be extradited from NZ.
          He has great expensive lawyers, but has he any money available to pay them ?

          • BloodyOrphan 10.1.1.4.1

            surely he can send a letter via snail mail, he must have someone here he can talk too.
            courier it to the embassy, it’ll get through….not
            some people are trying to set a precedent, and it’s unworthy in this context , a civilised outcome is the context required.
            He needs his cash to pay it needs to be included somehow.

        • Dr Terry 10.1.1.5

          BM – please inform us what exactly it is that you have “of value to add to NZ”.

  11. Lou 11

    “Key fails to gaurd the gaurdians” – KEY JUST FAILS.

  12. Jenny 12

    If it comes to a court case, will Key throw GSCB officials to the dogs?

    “Basic errors”

    “Blunders”

    “inept”

    These are the words of John Key to explain away the behaviour of the secret agencies supposedly under his control.

    That may be preferable to the other, more sinister, explanation – that the GCSB spied on Dotcom knowing it was unlawful but, because it is so heavily protected by secrecy, believed it would never be caught. It was only rumbled because a policeman tripped over his words in court.

    Tracy Watkins Fairfax news

    PM doesn’t hold back on inept spies

    Personally I agree with Tracy Watkins above analysis, over John Key’s explanation of stupidity and Keystone Kops incompetence.

    There is more than enough evidence to show that US intelligence agencies, deliberately subvert and infiltrate the intelligence services and law enforcement agencies of ‘their’ allies, encouraging them to break the laws of the government’s they serve, and to disregard the rights of the people they are paid to protect.

    The most well known and notorious case in history of course being in Chili where the CIA working closely working with the local military leaders to stage a coup against the Allende government that was threatening to regulate the US owned Chilean copper industry and other American business interests.

    The CIA was so linked with the Chilean intelligence agency that Chillean agents were able to enter the US to assassinate the Allende ambassador on the streets of Wasington DC and get away with it.

    This secret service blindness has echoes to the Rainbow Warrior bombing here.

    When it comes to upholding the law the intelligence agencies are more busy looking to the interests of the Western hemisphere foreign powers they are covertly linked to.

    Before the anti Terror raids on Tuhoe it came out that Police Commissioner Howard Broad had been extensively wined and dined by top American security officials in a series of completely uncontrolled and unremarked junkets to Washington DC. Not long after these revelations were leaked to the Truth newspaper Howard Broad despite claiming that he would stay for a second term instead quietly went into retirement.

    So sometimes these things do come out.

    With the Prime Minister claiming that the GSCB’s behavior is all down to GSCB incompetence.

    Lower ranked GSCB agents must be biting their nails, hoping against hope that their reliance on the defence of state secrecy prevails, or they too might be up before charges for their illegal activities.

  13. Welcome to the BANANA Republic New Zealand/Aoteoroa.
    My advice to Dotcom is figure out how many licenses he stole off Microsoft and send a Lawyer offering an out of court settlement for them.
    Case Closed bud.

    The GCSB are a bunch of incompetent witches who got their heads kicked in last night, including the bossman.

  14. Jenny 14

    Sometimes these things do come out.

    Pull on one finger bone, and sometimes a whole closet load of skeletons will tumble out into the light of day.

    GSCB and SIS and senior police must be praying that unlike in Italy all this never reaches the courts and that state secrecy prevails over truth in court.

    In Italy 23 CIA agents have been convicted of civil rights violations by Italian courts and for illegally working with Italian intelligence agents to abduct a Moslem cleric from Italian territory to a territory where torture is legal, in the notorious CIA practice known as “extraordinary rendition”. In a reversal of the Dotcom case, their extradition is being vigorously opposed by US lawyers working for the American authorities. As well as this, five Italian secret service agents including it’s director at the time, are facing charges of aiding them.

    American lawyers oppose extradition of convicted CIA agents

    Italy’s highest courts ruled that the extradition orders were legal.

    This sentence proves that Italy is a state still under the rule of law. Today Italy’s top criminal court gave Abou Omar back his dignity.

    The question is; Is the New Zealand state still under the rule of law?

    In the same sort of arrogant criminal behavior on display in the Dotcom case, US intelligence agencies backed by the State Department are expected to defy the legal ruling of the Italian courts.

    But back here in NZ these same agencies expect us to honour their demands for the extradition of Dotcom without due process?

    Will the New Zealand courts have the courage of the Italian courts to stand up to the US authorities, and agree to give Kim Dotcom “back his dignity” with a fair hearing?

    Or will he be deported as the Americans demand, without any evidence against him being presented?

    Will our courts demand that the US authorities provide at least some of the evidence they claim they hold against Dotcom. Or will he be delivered by us, into the US gulag without a fair hearing. Where like Bradly Manning, and many others, Kim Dotcom could be held for years in prison without trial?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/technology/7706772/Dotcom-in-court-for-documents-appeal

    The government’s lawyer, John Pike, said the District Court and High Court do not have the power to order evidence to be disclosed in the extradition process being used. If the record of the case was thought it inadequate the process was for the judge at the extradition hearing to invite the government to add to the record.

    But Paul Davison, QC, acting for Dotcom, said the extradition hearing – currently due to be heard next March – was the same as committing someone for trial. The government had to show evidence that, on the face of it, Dotcom and the others had a case to answer.

    Dotcom would have “both his hands tied behind his back” if he had to go through the extradition hearing without knowing the evidence being used to back up the allegations.

    As the Italian case shows, the US knows a lot about extraditing people with ‘their hands tied behind their backs’. In fact it is their preferred method of conducting cross border ‘justice’.

    One of the reasons the CIA were able to carry out the illegal abduction of Abou Omar is that the Americans have US troops and marines and their special service agents stationed on Italian soil. Unlike here in NZ where they had to rely on the local police and enforcement agencies to apprehend Dotcom. Obviously if John Key relents to the US demand for a permanent US Marine base here along with all that entails ie uncontrolled and monitered miltary flights in and out of the country the FBI and the CIA could dispense with most of the messy reliance on local authorities and due process in abducting someone like Dotcom, just as they have done with Abou Omar, and as they could have done with Ahmed Zowie.

    The Italian court hearings keep on giving.

    In another obvious parallel with the case against Dotcom, Italian Secret Service Agents are currently facing charges of breaking Italian law in illegally working with the US authorities to assist in the “extraordinary rendition” and subsequent torture of Abou Omar.

    The Supreme Court also ordered New appeal trials for five Italian Intelligence Agents including Italy’s top two former military intelligence officers, Nicola Polari and his ex deputy Marco Mancini. Polari and Mancini had repeatedly been aquitted on appeal in the past, because of the State Secrecy Injunction…..

    ….For the first time ever in Italy truth has prevailed over state secrecy in court.

    Press TV 21 Sept. 2012. 1.23 minutes into video.

    The government in claiming that the GSCB’s behavior is all down to incompetence of some GSCB officials and not culture of deliberate systemic law breaking, is setting the table where the prosecution of these so called “incompetent” individuals will be demanded to cover for the glaring missing democratic oversight of this oganisation.

    According the to government narrative…..

    ……. guess what, the report blamed underlings. It didn’t even investigate the question of whether their oversight was up to scratch.

    EDDIE

    Lower ranked GSCB agents must be biting their nails, hoping against hope that their reliance on the defence of state secrecy prevails, or they too might be up before charges for their illegal activities on behalf of a foreign power.

    Pull one finger bone…..

  15. captain hook 15

    when you have a government that professes not to believe in government and cherry picks laws and rules to suit itself then you end up with this sort of lawless mob.

    • Wychbych 15.1

      I’m surprised Shonkey Johnkey isn’t legislating this away – that’s what he does when there’s something he doesn’t like… he just changes the law!

      He cried like a little bitch when he thought HIS rights and that of his toady W(b)anks were being infringed upon a la Teapotgate. The police *then* had plenty of spare time to investigate the ‘criminal’ reporter. And now, with national security at stake, and shoddy, cavalier attitudes prevailing there’s ‘no need’ for further investigation.

      I loved Winston’s comment yesterday ‘We’re asking you to FIRE YOURSELF.’

      It’s risible that this toilet paper report isn’t being thrown out and an inquiry started yesterday.

  16. Jenny 16

    The best and most simplest solution to the Dotcom fiasco for the government and all our state agencies involved in this matter is to declare to the Americans and the world, that our sovereignity is sacred.

    That the Americans if they wish to prosecute Kim Dotcom will have to lay charges against him in a New Zealand Court under New Zealand laws. Where they will have to prove to the satisfaction of our Justice System, that New Zealand resident Kim Dotcom has broken either New Zealand, or international law. And further, that if the Americans want to extradite Dotcom to stand trial in America as well, then they can do so on his conviction and sentencing.

    In the case of aquittal the US authorities are just as free as anyone else to appeal that aquittal, just as anyone else has the right to do. In fact with all the resources at their disposal they are freer than most to do so. (That is if they have any reasonable case at all)

    This simple solution serves all national, international legal and human rights and democratic norms as well as serving justice to Kim Dotcom himself.

    Not only this but it will bring huge international prestige to this country.

    Which way will Key and our spooks go?

    Low cunning and deal making practiced behind closed doors, with dishonourable forelock tugging and groveling to the yanks, all covered over by secrecy.

    Or honourable and courageous independent justice and foreign policy admired around the world.

    I wait in hope for the latter.

    • Microsoft are the only ones capable of actually proving this type of case anywhere in the world.
      If DotCom faces up to what he’s done and makes an appropriate offer the whole thing will likely disappear.

    • Jenny 16.2

      Which way will Key and our spooks go?

      Low cunning and deal making practiced behind closed doors, with dishonourable forelock tugging and groveling to the yanks, all covered over by secrecy.

      Or honourable and courageous independent justice and foreign policy admired around the world.

      I wait in hope for the latter.

      But their instincts and culture will mean that they will probably opt for the former.

  17. yeshe 17

    Bryce Edwards summarises in the Herald this morning … has links to a many excellent editorials from round the country as deep anger grows … Key is in trouble, but sadly, so are we ….

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10836888

  18. gobsmacked 18

    On Radio Live just now, Rodney Hide interviewed David Shearer about the inadequate oversight of the intelligence agencies, and his role in Parliament.

    If you heard it, you will understand why Shearer must go. Hide – yes, Rodney Hide – made more sense than the leader of the Labour party. It was hopeless.

    • insider 18.1

      Shearer was ok. He said he’s trying to balance keeping a public profile for the issue with his role on the security oversight committee. Hide has the advantage, as he said, of having gone through this kind of thing before so could talk about what he did.

  19. I enjoy your insights g and your advice to labour. i listened to shearer with Mary yesterday after 5 and he was pretty good on that one. The big issue I have is that everything being done (by like-minded lefties) is to remove the gnats and their horrible support parties – if that is achieved – most likely due to their own incompetance and unethical behaviour, well then someone else will have to be PM. Now personally I’d love Hone but I can’t see him doing it – it is not where his talents lie. The fact is that labour will likely get the reins and that means that shearer gets the reins. Now i don’t rate shearer very highly for all the reasons we all know, but and it is a big but – he is a million times better than key and labour for all their faults are better than national. I won’t vote labour but i’ll work bloody hard to get rid of the gnats.

    woops – should be reply to you gobsmacked

    • gobsmacked 19.1

      Sure, Marty, but … is he the best Labour have got (No) and do National want to face Shearer at the election? (yes, oh yes)

      I strongly recommend listening to this. The audio should be available this afternoon. It was broadast approx 11.05 – 11.15 am.

      http://www.radiolive.co.nz/Audio.aspx

  20. deuto 20

    Love it!

    The Greens have asked the Police to investigate the GCSB fiasco under the same section of the Crimes Act as Key asked them to investigate the Bradley Ambrose teacup issue – on the grounds that KDC’s privacy has been breached!

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10837132

    and Stuff

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7741763/Greens-lay-police-complaint-over-Dotcom-spying

    Norman repeated Key’s assertion that he called in police because ” it was a “matter of principle”.

    “When he was taped in a public café by a media person discussing matters of public interest, Key kicked up an almighty fuss and had police raid media outlets to make sure the tape wasn’t released,” he said.

    “If Prime Minister Key really feels so strongly about a person’s right to privacy, then he should back my call for the police to investigate the illegal surveilling of New Zealand residents by a government spy agency.

    Norman believed GCSB agents breached Section 216(B) of the Crimes Act.

    “The seriousness of the concerted and purposeful spying on private persons by government spies is orders of magnitude greater than the teapot tapes ever were,” he added.

    “Our spies are subject to the laws of this land. They must be held accountable by the police and the courts when they violate those laws.”

  21. ianmac 21

    On National Radio at 12: The Greens have laid an official complaint with Police regarding their slip-up. Might take a year or two to process though.
    Oops Dueto. Crossed in the mail.

    • deuto 21.1

      No problem – snap, snap and snap (at 20, 21 and 22).

      An ‘unusual’ approach but like people (eg the Greens) who think outside the square.

      Edit – strange: 22 with a link to msm has now disappeared.

    • Colonial Viper 21.2

      Might take a year or two to process though.

      You mean…in election year??? :D

  22. ianmac 22

    I wonder how John would respond to an offer to have another cup of tea? Haha! Do they serve tea on Planet Key? No one to clean the non-existent toilets or wash the dishes.

  23. outofbed 23

    “on planet Key” I like that developing as a saying
    I have used it once today already to great effect or maybe affect

  24. Logie97 24

    Along with hanging out his minions to dry, Pinocchio fails his own standards:
    Now we have “They shouldn’t of …” to go with his notorious “everythink…”

    About 2:14 in
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/2534010/greens-lodge-police-complaint-over-dotcom-spying.asx

  25. xtasy 25

    Ha, I so conveniently spy on you, dear “Standartistas”! I have the ropes, the control and am the “master” in charge. So be mindful of this, or you may get a visit soon!

    John Keypone

  26. Bent Knees babe … not

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    Labour
  • New projections show New Zealand missing climate target
    Briefings to Incoming Ministers released today reveal the Government's climate policy is failing with projected emission more than double what is needed to meet National's 2050 target, the Green Party saidProjections released by the Ministry for the Environment, as part...
    Greens
  • National’s highways far less efficient
    National’s new state highways have a far lower cost-benefit ratio than motorways built under the last Labour Government, making a mockery of the Government’s bluster that its road building will boost the economy, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New...
    Labour
  • Governor points finger at National on supply
    The Reserve Bank Governor has admitted he had to keep loan to value mortgage restrictions in place because the Government’s attempts to increase housing has fallen ‘a long way short’, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The thousands of first...
    Labour
  • Did Collins cover up Slater’s OIA requests?
    Disgraced former Cabinet Minister Judith Collins must explain why she appears to have tried to hide Official Information Act requests she fulfilled for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “New documents obtained by Labour show Judith...
    Labour
  • Reserve Bank’s dairy warning must be heard
    The Reserve Bank’s warning that falling dairy prices are creating greater risks for the New Zealand economy must be taken seriously by Bill English and John Key, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “Dairy prices have nearly halved since February...
    Labour
  • National’s housing failure keeps LVRs in place
    The Reserve Bank’s decision to leave loan-to-value ratio mortgage restrictions in place is further confirmation of National’s housing policy fiasco, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank would have lifted LVRs if they had seen any increase in...
    Labour
  • Let’s see if it is plane sailing Mr Bridges
    Comments by Transport Minister Simon Bridges that Far North residents' anger over cutbacks to regional flights will be allayed by larger planes and cheaper fares out of Kerikeri, are just pure arrogance, says Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis....
    Labour
  • Commerce Commission inquiry needed into building supplies monopoly
    The Commerce Commission must stop dragging the chain and urgently investigate the anti-competitive practices in the building industry that are driving up the cost of building materials, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Competition in the building materials market is...
    Labour
  • Air New Zealand grounds Far North
    The announcement by Air New Zealand to close services from Kaitaia to Auckland will be an absolute disaster for the Far North, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis says.  “Air New Zealand is sending a signal to the...
    Labour
  • Pulling West Coast flights a savage blow
    Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its Westport service is another kick in the guts for an already struggling community, West Coast-Tasman MP, Damien O’Connor says.   “Having been involved in the West Coast’s efforts to get Air Nelson to return...
    Labour
  • Air NZ cuts economic lifelines to neglected regions
    Air New Zealand’s plans to cut its Eagle Air regional services to already struggling regions is a hammer blow to Westport, Whakatane and Kaitaia, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The regions of New Zealand are being abandoned by this...
    Labour
  • Christchurch on the rent rack
    A jump of 20 per cent in weekly rents in the past year is a disaster for Christchurch, says Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Trade Me Property Rental Price index has rightly described the city as being a ‘...
    Labour
  • Past time to act on warnings about palliative care
    Health officials have been warning the Government about a critical shortage of palliative care specialists for years, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Annette King says. A stocktake carried out for the Ministry of Health shows New Zealand’s end...
    Labour
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased is the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog
  • The Warehouse & Noel Leeming Praised for Principled Stand
    Family First NZ is congratulating The Warehouse and Noel Leeming for reinforcing their ‘family-friendly values’ by removing R18 games and DVD’s from its shelves, and is calling on other retailers including JB Hi-Fi, Harvey Norman and Dick Smith...
    Scoop politics
  • PM’s Post-Cab on Iain Rennie, China and the Smith Inquiry
    In a press conference held today in Wellington, Prime Minister John Key answered questions regarding Iain Rennie’s potential resignation, the independent inquiry into the Smith/Traynor escape, and recent trade deals with China....
    Scoop politics
  • Safety Week 2014 focused on a safe summer
    ACC’s annual Safety Week kicks off today. With summer just around the corner, Safety Week this year is focusing on keeping safe when playing sport, enjoying recreational activities or drinking alcohol....
    Scoop politics
  • Safety focus during motorcycle month
    As the Central District Police annual Month of Motorcycles campaign cruises into its second week, the results so far have been positive with many motorcyclists playing their part to keep our roads safe....
    Scoop politics
  • Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST
    Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST The Sensible Sentencing Trust is slamming a decision which may acquit a Whakatane offender of serious dangerous driving charges....
    Scoop politics
  • Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons
    Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons to show violence towards women is never OK...
    Scoop politics
  • Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media
    Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media to say “no” to domestic violence Everyone has the right to feel safe at home. Many do not. One in three partnered New Zealand women report having experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner...
    Scoop politics
  • Smoke Alarms in Rental properties
    TPA says recent calls for mandatory smoke alarm installations in rental properties is an opportunity for all parties to come together to improve the safety and quality of rental housing....
    Scoop politics
  • CTU will not engage in Governments sham consultation process
    Today the CTU has sent a letter to Prime Minister John Key articulating serious concerns about both the content and the rushed process the Government has clearly signalled it intends to follow to progress the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation...
    Scoop politics
  • Job vacancies steady in October
    The number of skilled job vacancies advertised online remained steady in October across most industry groups and occupations, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report....
    Scoop politics
  • 600 Slaves And Counting on New Zealand Soil
    The 2014 Global Slavery Index has just been released, and buried within its pages is New Zealand’s growing issue of human exploitation and slavery. When taken in conjunction with the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons Report 2014,...
    Scoop politics
  • Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and NZ
    Media Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand: Police Commissioners take a stand against violence against women and children...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ Police Commissioner makes a stand against Family Violence
    New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush has joined with his Australian Police Commissioner colleagues at Parliament House in Canberra this morning to take a stand on violence against women and children....
    Scoop politics
  • Amnesty International campaigns for end to domestic violence
    Amnesty International will be making a donation of over $500 to Aviva (formerly known as Women’s Refuge Christchurch) at the conclusion of Tuesday’s inner city march against domestic violence....
    Scoop politics
  • Waka Hourua celebrates what’s working in suicide prevention
    On 19 and 20 November, Māori and Pasifika national suicide prevention programme Waka Hourua held its first national hui-fono in Auckland. The theme was Whakarauika Mai: Bringing Communities Together to Prevent Suicide in Aotearoa. ...
    Scoop politics
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
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  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
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  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
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  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
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  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
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  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
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  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics
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