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NZ vs Ecuador

Written By: - Date published: 10:41 am, August 19th, 2012 - 183 comments
Categories: International, police - Tags: , ,

One of the most depressing aspects of the whole Kim Dotcom fiasco (so far) has been the way NZ has operated as a pawn of America. Under guidance from the FBI we merrily launched an illegal and allegedly unnecessarily violent raid on Dotcom and his family. Due process and common sense seem to have been thrown completely out the window in our eagerness to please our American masters.

Consider the stark contrast with Ecuador, which is currently standing up to considerable pressure on the world stage to offer asylum to the man who seems to be America’s public enemy No. 1, Julian Assange. (I don’t want to start yet another thread on the rights or wrongs of Assange’s actions here, I’m just noting the bravery of Ecuador).

I remember a time when NZ wasn’t afraid to stand up for itself on the world stage, and do what it thought was right. I miss those days.

183 comments on “NZ vs Ecuador”

  1. AmaKiwi 1

    Damn right!

    America is becoming the next Nazi Germany. Paula Bennett’s defiance of our right to privacy echoes the USA’s Homeland Security except she doesn’t even pretend her victims are a threat to anyone except her inflated ego.

    The Teleban in Afghanistan are far less of a threat to my well-being than my own government is!

    • Polish Pride 1.1

      +1

    • Populuxe1 1.2

      The US in not becoming the next Nazi Germany – that’s just stupid hyperbole, lest we forget the horrific things Nazi Germany actually did, and the Taliban was never a threat to your well being.. Unless of course mutilating women offends you like it does me.

      • fatty 1.2.1

        “The US in not becoming the next Nazi Germany – that’s just stupid hyperbole”

        If you look at the economic violence perpetrated by the US, then its a fair comment

        • Populuxe1 1.2.1.1

          No it isn’t. Wake me up when the US invades Canada and Mexico, and openly and systematically murders six million of it’s Jewish citizens – then we’ll talk. Otherwise “GODWIN” and “STUPID HYPERBOLE”.

          • fatty 1.2.1.1.1

            I agree, USA will not invade Mexico or Canada and kill 6 million Jews.
            Hard power is so 20th Century. Hard power today can only be justified to US citizens for a brief moment if there is a physical threat (real or imaginary). http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/2600916?uid=3738776&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21101161663027

            Soft power is the weapon of choice, free trade agreements can have intense, wide-ranging and hidden effects. Even just one trade agreement can create millions to suffer in Mexico
            http://www.fpif.org/articles/nafta_is_starving_mexico

            • Populuxe1 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Yes. Nazi Germany invented soft power but still preferred to do things as sadistically and bloodily as possible, and millions suffering in Mexico because of a trade deal (and any suffering is more likely a result of the systemic corruption than anything else) doesn’t even compare to having your entire culture virtually erased (talk to some Poles or Czechs) – so really you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about.

              • fatty

                “Nazi Germany invented soft power”

                Really? Can you elaborate on that please…cause that’s news to me, and probably everyone else.

                “and millions suffering in Mexico because of a trade deal (and any suffering is more likely a result of the systemic corruption than anything else) doesn’t even compare to having your entire culture virtually erased”

                That’s true, one trade deal does not equal the holocaust…good point. However, that was provided as one of many examples of US soft power (not the Nazi soft power that you are about to teach me about).
                And yes, the suffering is caused by systemic corruption. NAFTA is a good example of centralised systemic corruption. Soft power is systemic corruption (again, not your Nazi soft power).
                Another good example of US soft power is how they use Israel.
                I’ve been to Auschwitz and talked to the Poles. I know exactly what I am talking about. I am not underestimating the holocaust. You should be careful of accusing people of not understanding the holocaust, when you don’t know that person’s history, or understand the basics of their argument.

                • Populuxe1

                  Really? Can you elaborate on that please…cause that’s news to me, and probably everyone else.

                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazi_propaganda
                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ministry_of_Public_Enlightenment_and_Propaganda
                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Goebbels

                  I’ve been to Auschwitz and talked to the Poles. I know exactly what I am talking about. I am not underestimating the holocaust. You should be careful of accusing people of not understanding the holocaust, when you don’t know that person’s history, or understand the basics of their argument.

                  So fucking what? I’ve been to Bergen-Belsen and I still wouldn’t claim to understand that nightmare. Not sure what good talking to the Poles would do – a lot of them were complicit in the fun and games. You might try talking to some Jews. Or indeed reading some first person history from Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic etc. No one really “understands” the Holocaust – it defies description, so don’t talk nonsense.

                  • Polish Pride

                    “No one really understands the Holocaust”!?!

                    I must tell tell my partners Grandparents that the next time I see them…..They of course can pass this onto the Holocaust survivors that they know.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Don’t be obtuse. 
                      Does that “Polish Pride” extend to the szmalcowniks? As I said, it’s a very complex event.

                  • fatty

                    Sorry, it doesn’t say where Nazi’s Germany invented soft power. Those links talk of propaganda and how it was used, but it doesn’t specify when and where it was invented. Can you please clear that up? Cheers.

                    “Not sure what good talking to the Poles would do – a lot of them were complicit in the fun and games.”

                    I agree, I have no idea how talking to poles will help anything…I wrote that in response to your suggestion that I should “talk to some poles” http://thestandard.org.nz/nz-vs-ecuador/comment-page-1/#comment-511811

                    “You might try talking to some Jews.”

                    Oh no…I’m not falling for that one again.

                    “No one really “understands” the Holocaust – it defies description, so don’t talk nonsense.”

                    Actually, I do understand it, and wiki managed to provide a description, its what they do. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Holocaust

                    Should we get back to the discussion on soft power, or are you off to get that bump on your head sorted?

                    • Populuxe1

                      When I suggested you talk to some Poles, that was in reference to German occupation, not the Holocaust per se.
                      As for the rest, you are knowingly being obtuse and therefore are of little interest.

            • Populuxe1 1.2.1.1.2.1

              Ethiopia’s problems are less to do with global capitalism than they are to do with their government’s lack of double-entry book keeping and shite agricultural practices.

              • fatty

                “Ethiopia’s problems are less to do with global capitalism than they are to do with their government’s lack of double-entry book keeping and shite agricultural practices.”

                Where did you get that idea from?

                This Susan George article puts it in perspective
                http://www.palgrave-journals.com/development/journal/v50/n2/full/1100356a.html

                “In 1980, the South was already seriously indebted; its debt stocks amounted to $540 billion. Twenty-five years later, in 2004, the stock had increased to $2,600 billion, almost five times as much. Meanwhile, over the same 25-year period, these countries had reimbursed $5,300 billion, nearly 10 times what they owed in 1980.”

                “In 2004, Latin America had $770 billion worth of debts and paid out $121 billion in debt service, almost 16 percent (about the same percentage of service paid by Southeast Asia and the countries of the former Soviet bloc). Even sub-Saharan Africa paid $15 billion on debts of $220 billion, or 6.8 percent. How much money is this in understandable human terms? For Latin America, it meant a drain of $331 million a day, $13.8 million an hour; $230,000 a minute. Sub-Saharan Africa, despite all the promises of the G-8 and the IFIs, provided its creditors (mostly public institutions) with $41 million a day, $1.7 million an hour, $28,000 a minute in debt service. One could doubtless feed many hungry people or build many schools and clinics with $230,000 or even $28,000 a minute.”

                • Populuxe1

                  Given that Ethiopia was never under European colonial rule except for a handful of years under Mussolini’s Italy, prey tell who’s fault is it that they’re in hock to the WB in the first place?
                  Why do they have a soil erosion problem?
                  If South East Asia can service it’s debts and not starve, why can’t Africa? (hint – it involves numbered bank accounts in the Caymans). Are the WB payments even relevant to discusing Ethiopia’s economic health?
                  Why are they not exploiting their mineral and natural gas wealth more (or at all, in the case of gas)?
                   
                  http://www.worldpress.org/Africa/1839.cfm

                  • fatty

                    “Given that Ethiopia was never under European colonial rule except for a handful of years under Mussolini’s Italy, prey tell who’s fault is it that they’re in hock to the WB in the first place?”

                    They liberalised their economy during the 1990s thanks to Meles Zenawi with some privatisation and foreign investment. Standard structural adjustment policies that spread through Africa were introduced so they could get loans from the WB.

                    “If South East Asia can service it’s debts and not starve, why can’t Africa?”

                    A number of reasons, including: colonial influences, location, resources, investments, culture, the world economy, regional treaties.
                    Comparing SE Asia with Africa is like comparing Ireland with Cuba, they are incomparable.

                    “Are the WB payments even relevant to discusing Ethiopia’s economic health?”

                    Yes, it is a relevant issue regarding Ethiopia’s economy. I would say the most relevant by a long way, others would say not to that extent, but I doubt anyone could seriously claim that WB repayments are not relevant. The structural adjustment policies stunted real growth (4.5% under the military, down to 1% in the 1990s under pro-West leaders) which was propped up by foreign ‘investment’. The SAPs required reduced taxes, and prohibited borrowing from domestic financial institutions to finance its deficits, and allow for private sector investment.
                    Inequality increased to crazy levels, war broke out, development funding from the West stopped and it turned real bad.

                    “Why are they not exploiting their mineral and natural gas wealth more”

                    Too much foreign ‘investment’ helping them to ‘utilise’ their resources…it is Africa!

  2. insider 2

    Oh, I thought this was going to be the half time score

  3. Pete 3

    I wouldn’t go that far. The courts have distinguished themselves in demonstrating their independence.

    • Jackal 3.1

      It’s a pity they’re having to be called upon to correct the flagrant ignorance of the law and abuse of due process on so many occasions. Dotcom should be looking to sue the asses of the NZ government to teach them a lesson. The contrast between Ecuador (spelt with a c btw) and New Zealand couldn’t be greater.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        The courts and the judiciary will be the next targetted by the Nats. Just you wait.

      • Polish Pride 3.1.2

        “Dotcom should be looking to sue the asses of the NZ government to teach them a lesson.”

        problem is two fold
        1. when he wins we are the ones that pay for it not the politicians.
        2. You run the risk of them introducing legislation to put them on the right sidwe of the law again possibly at ev en greater cost to our already eroding civil liberties.

  4. Tiger Mountain 4

    Well the Prime Minister’s kiss-assing of all things American (Letterman, Warners, Hobbit enabling Act, kids baseball, supporting TPP, desperate photo ops with Barrack etc. etc.) has set a tone for this government that is way different from the more independent course that the previous two Labour administrations followed.

    Equador is from a continent that has had the yankee boot (and by consequence the corrupt local comprador capitalist regimes) on its throat for way too long. Will Equador be able to outsmart the pasty poms and sneak Assange out? Who knows but good on them for trying. The poms went to considerable lengths remember to prevent the extradition of one Augusto Pinochet. The Wikileaks revelations showed a number of Latin American countries in what low regard Washington holds them.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Well the Prime Minister’s kiss-assing of all things American

      Don’t forget that Key is one of the international bankster cartel’s very own. He’s worked more years for the international money men than he has for anyone else.

      • Pete Sime 4.1.1

        What’s his immigration status with respect to the US? I know he worked there and has a house in Hawaii. Does he have permanent residency, or even dual citizenship?

  5. Richard Christie 5

    I would point out that Equator is part of America.
    If you mean USA, say USA, not America.
    Cheers.

    • Tiger Mountain 5.1

      Amerika/America is the USA to me, and Latin America is below Central America. The three zones together constitute the “Americas”.

      Pedantry aside Richard, what do you think about Anthony’s post?

      • Richard Christie 5.1.1

        I’m fully in support of America’s granting of asylum to Assange and agree with the sentiment that if we behaved more like America and stood up to covert interference by the USA then we would stand taller in our shoes.

    • Bill 5.2

      I would point out that Equator is part of America

      Certainly dissects it…along with two of the other four continents. Don’t know about it being a part of America though.

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    The National Government assisting Hollywood moguls to wreck our employment protections. Another low point.

    • Polish Pride 6.1

      Swings both ways CV – How much has the NZ population grown throughout the Labour years as a result of immigration policy that ultimately do to an increase in the amount of workers ends up putting downward pressure on wages.

  7. Jenny 7

    “If you are not with us you are against us.”

    The same kowtowing to the American super power was also on display in the so called “Terror Raids” which closely followed a narrative for an international terrorist conspiracy written in the US.
    And swallowed wholesale by gullible senior police commanders, who at the time were doing their best to impress Washington and in a case of insecure colonial forelock tugging ensure the Us that, “yes we are with you.” Howard Broad for instance spent a lot of the previous year being wined and dined in Washington DC, where no doubt, as well as all the wine and good food he imbibed, he also credulously swallowed a lot of American ‘War On Terror’ hysteria.

    It was disappointing to me that this Keystone Kops style embarrassment still continues beyond Howard Broad’s tenure. (After the debacle of the Terror Raids, Howard Broad suddenly stood down to go into retirement even though he had just publicly announced that he fully intended to continue on for a second term as police commissioner.)

    • muzza 7.1

      Jenny, you clearly understand where the USA fits in terms of the “terror raids” and the manufacturing of “terror”, so can I ask why you are not able to apply the thought process you articulate above, to the “Arab Spring”?

      U.S. Groups Helped Nurture Arab Uprisings

      “We didn’t fund them to start protests, but we did help support their development of skills and networking,” said Stephen McInerney, executive director of the Project on Middle East Democracy, a Washington-based advocacy and research group. “That training did play a role in what ultimately happened, but it was their revolution. We didn’t start it.”

      Sure you didn’t Stephen, sure you didn’t!

      • Jenny 7.1.1

        The conspiracy of all conspiracies.

        The mother of all plots.

        The scheme of all schemes.

        Breaking news: Bashar Assad has been the innocent victim of a huge Western conspiracy.

        How could I have been so stupid not to see it. As the following link from scoop.co.nz explains, it was all a big ol’ Anglo/American plot.

        http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1208/S00052/anglo-american-1957-plan-to-assassinate-the-syrian-president.htm

        Who knew?

        The plot to overthrow the gentle and kind ruler of Syria, Bashar Assad, the greatest humanitarian since Mother Teresa. And the first secular saint to be cannonised by Western leftists, who don’t mind overlooking a tiny bit of torture, or mass murder, in a good cause.

        This plot must be the biggest, the most audacious, the most far sighted, the most expensive covert mission ever undertaken in the history of our superior Western civilisation.
        The plan was initiated in 1957 and had as its completion date the year 2012, when the cold war was expected to be over. (our side having won).

        The first stage of the plan was completed in 1969 with a fake landing on the moon. Staged in a Hollywood back lot at minimal cost and with failed Hollywood bit part actor Neil Armstrong in the leading role who even managed to miff his lines stepping out of his cardboard spaceship. The multi $billions extracted from Congress and budgeted for the fake moon shot, instead being funnelled into ‘The Plan’.

        Having secured the required unlimited budget for ‘The Plan”, tens of thousands of sleeper agents were secretly infiltrated into Arab communities and societies across the Middle East without anyone noticing, there to patiently and stoically await the invention of the internet which would be used deliver the secret signal from Washington.

        With the same attention to detail as the fake moon landing, the faked Arab Spring required the CIA to requisition industrial loads of Hollywood special effects, thunder flashes, whiz bangs, fake tear gas and hundreds of barrels of fake blood made from red dyed corn syrup and required the hiring of thousands of paid extras equipped with plastic rifles and rubber truncheons, to pose as police and army killers, to the plan made in 1957 the mock atrocities by these extras were filmed and edited before being placed on utube. As per ‘The Plan’ the faked mass uprising against Western backed tyrannies across the whole Arab world was only a cover for the main act, the planned Western invasion of Syria.

        In its execution the plan worked perfectly.
        At the anointed time the CIA sleeper agents fluent in Arabic and having successfully posed as Moslems for almost four decades, on getting the signal over the internet on their secret 1950′s style internet enabled receivers rose up on mass across the Arab world.

        At the same time Arab fundamentalists with the unlikely code name of Al Kaider, who as part of the plot had been pretending for more than a decade to be enemies of the West, threw off their Anti Western guise and joined with the CIA in the invasion of Syria.

  8. Wayne 8

    What is it with the left (or least the edgier part of it) that you keep raising the Hobbit of all things. You can hardly say you are in favour of more jobs and then turn your back on literally thousands of quality jobs. It is less about Hollywood moguls and more about Weta, Peter Jackson and keeping a key high tech industry in New Zealand. You keep wondering why National stays above 40 percent; well New Zealanders get the idea you can’t keep saying no to everything that is actually being proposed or done to actually create or retain jobs.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Peter Jackson is a member of at least 3 unions himself.

      The fact that he, as a half billionaire, fought against his own workers having union protection themselves, and fought against NZers having the same working conditions as the foreign actors he hired (who were protected by the Screen Actors Guild union) SUCKED.

    • Tiger Mountain 8.2

      “quality jobs” I don’t think so Wayne. The Hobbit enabling Act has condemned film industry workers to precarious independent contractor status until we get shot of this ShonKey National administration.

      The shameful labour day protest organised out of Richard Talyor’s enclave was the last straw for me. I know a number of people in the industry and the line is often “we are a special case, we don’t need a union, we look after each other” bullshit, even caterers have to toe the line and suck up. There are small techies “guilds” and such forth but it is generally an exploitative scenario.

      It is a notorious industry for face fitting, backstabbing and subservience. Except for Lord Jackson as CV points out.

      Anyway more importantly what is your view on Anthony’s post re the Assange extradition?

      • ropata 8.2.1

        Agreed it’s a case of trickle up. Was offered a job at Weta Digital a few years back but the salary was a joke. Ahh no thanks mate I earn 3 times that amount

        • Tom 8.2.1.1

          You are not the only one to turn them down.

          As Michael Cullen put it when he was Treasurer, you can’t base the economy on a dream.

    • weka 8.3

      You keep wondering why National stays above 40 percent; well New Zealanders get the idea you can’t keep saying no to everything that is actually being proposed or done to actually create or retain jobs.
       

      Anyone got the stats on jobs created by Labour vs National handy?

  9. prism 9

    There was an interesting connection between Sweden and the United States that was discussed yesterday. A Swedish doco maker had his finished film injuncted; on the possible effects of USA food giant Dole using pesticides on its bananas causing mutations and sterilisation in workers. But he made another about his difficulties with corporate battles, real David and Goliath stuff.

    The USA goverment will have been lobbied by Dole and also the Swedish government will be involved. Julian Assange’s situation was mentioned.

    Radionz 8.15 Sat 18/8 Fredrik Gertten: bananas
    Swedish film maker and journalist whose documentary Bananas led to him being sued for defamation by Dole, a story he tells in his new film, Big Boys Gone Bananas. (35′16″)

  10. QoT 10

    I’m just noting the bravery of Ecuador

    r0b, I don’t want to start on the whole Assange/rape culture thing either, but the fact is he’s not sheltering in the Ecuadoran embassy because of anything other than the UK has agreed he should be extradited to Sweden to answer questions about alleged sexual assault.

    If you’re going to characterize that as “brave” then you’re accepting at least one side’s spin on the matter.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      I reckon r0b is saying that it’s the Ecuadorian government who is being brave, flying in the face of the wishes of the far more powerful US/UK.

      And Assange can be seen as a coward, if you want.

      • QoT 10.1.1

        I wasn’t saying Assange is being brave, I was saying that it’s silly to characterize Ecuador’s actions as “brave” as though what they are doing is anything to do with opposing “considerable pressure” from the United States on “America’s public enemy No. 1″. Swedish prosecutors, UK legal decision, clear statements from the US that they have no interest in extraditing him.

        At this point the “bravery” is in sheltering a dude apparently because his fanbase are convinced he’s Neo, when the actual reality is … two nations want him to answer some questions about rape allegations.

        • Populuxe1 10.1.1.1

          Exactly. Ecuador is frustrating an investigation for the lesser charge of molestation. Meanwhile the Assange fan boys are trivialising what is actually very serious. It is repugnant that a possible victim be accused of lying about it – it’s actually one of the most hateful things that can be done to a woman, and a big chunk of the left seem to have forgotten that..

      • r0b 10.1.2

        CV is correct in what I meant. This link (posted by Vicky32 in Open mike) is worth reading:
        http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article32216.htm

    • Polish Pride 10.2

      “the fact is he’s not sheltering in the Ecuadoran embassy because of anything other than the UK has agreed he should be extradited to Sweden to answer questions about alleged sexual assault.”

      No you left off a key point to why he is there. He is sheltering there because Sweden will not give a gaurantee that they will not send him onto a third party (i.e. the United States). If he is extradited to face the rape charges. It has been made quite clear that he is more than happy to go if this assurance can be given.

      Sweden will not give this assurance and have already been in conversations with the US who want him extradited. The problem is that if this were to happen. He would likely not receive a fair trial and may even be subject to the death penalty.

      • The Baron 10.2.1

        I have a very, very dim view of Assange avoiding facing his sexual assault charges, but I am not aware of this dynamic thanks PP.

        It would seem to me that the Swedes should indeed decouple the two matters to allow their crime to be tested, without the USA’s concerns getting in the way.

  11. McFlock 11

    Both countries have had terror raids.
       
    And don’t get Human Rights Watch started on Ecuador. 
         
    Is one really so much better than the other? 

    • Bill 11.1

      (sigh) HRW and AI. Y’know, if Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch ever deserved a reputation for being reasonably independent, then that reputation is, quite rightly, in utter fucking tatters these days. And has been for several years.

      And no. I can’t be bothered entering into pointless debate about the matter. Just do yourself a favour and do some reading.

      • McFlock 11.1.1

        Oh ffs.
              
        “Do some reading” isn’t even an appeal to authority. It seems to be the latest refrain from idealogues who can’t explain their position clearly or support it with actual evidence. And by “actual evidence”, I don’t mean opinion pieces and unsourced rants from other idealogues.
               
        You know what? Take a community class in basic logic. That might help you support your blanket assertions. It might help you understand the concept that because A does a good thing X, it does not mean that A did not do bad thing Y. It doesn’t matter if X is granting asylum to people you believe are being persecuted, or exposing the secrets of oppressive regimes.

        • Bill 11.1.1.1

          Your sources. The ones you linked to, are disreputable. Sadly imo, because they have done some good stuff in years gone past. And they used to be fairly reliable sources of information. But not any more. And it’s that I’m suggesting you read up on; the background to and current politics of your sources.

          As for logic or charges of being an ideologue…I guess it skipped your notice, but I’m not one for tying my colours to someone elses mast. Just as it obviously skipped your notice that I made absolutely no mention of Ecuador or Assange in my comment.

          • McFlock 11.1.1.1.1

            yeah, whatever dude. Take it or leave it – that’s one reason linking to sources is a good idea. It means if the source looks kooky or biased, then the assertion needs to be double checked. Maybe you should read up on the situation in Ecuador? 
                     
            At least my assertions have a demonstrable basis, rather than simply being a declamation followed by . . . nothing.
             

            • Bill 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Try this. Maybe you’d like to sign it? Seriously.

              And have a good look at the history and comments of Suzanne Nossel, Executive Director, Amnesty International USA while you’re at it.

              Here’s a head’s up from another internal petition

              And I’ll throw in this piece of good advice from Joe Emersberger. (And no. I don’t know who he is. But his advice is sound.)

              I would add that left writers need to get out of the habit of uncritcally citing Amnesty’s (or HRW’s) work when it backs up a position they are arguing. If you cite the US state dept on something most readers will factor in the bias of the source on their own – without the writer calling attention to it. It’s a no brainer. However, in the case of Amnesty (or HRW), readers may not be aware of the bias (though thankfully I believe that is changing) and it shoud therefore be mentioned.

              And for reading up on the situation in Ecuador? Do you mean pieces like this one by Federico Fuentes

              And should you want to know the angle Fuentes comes from, then there’s a slew of articles by him here. (Y’know. That way you can work out his bias, check his sources and read what he says accordingly)

              .

              • McFlock

                See, those were interesting links, and there seems to be quite a few good policies pursued by the Ecuadorian government.
                     
                It’s a pity that those links didn’t seem to address the point about arresting environmentalists on trumped up charges, or limiting press freedom. Maybe I missed it?
                   
                Now if you could provide  relevant links to the assertions at hand…

                • Bill

                  The assetions come from the sources linked in your original comment, yes? And as some of the links show, your sources aren’t reliable.

                  Protesters arrested on trumped up charges is not a good thing. (But it is unfortunately a very common thing – even here in NZ.) Anyway. Just as well then, that the courts agree. They’ve dismissed most of the charges and now only 8 of those 24 are under investigation and none are being held in jail. (And I’m thinking of parallels in NZ again)

                  Anyway, do you think it’s possible Tamaryn Nelson got her info retrospectively from the courts’ findings and is then attempting to present things to appear ‘in a certain light’?

                  Nah. Surely not. All those relaxed people laughing and looking to be enjoying themselves at a protest in March of this year with no over bearing police presence doesn’t jar with her text at all! I mean it looks obvious that “authorities are “using any tool in the box” to discourage people from voicing their disapproval” – just as she claims.

                  Wonder where she’s based? This researcher. Well, here’s her pedigree. Used to work for AS/COA. And as their web site declares:

                  Americas Society (AS) is the premier forum dedicated to education, debate, and dialogue in the Americas. Council of the Americas (COA) is the premier international business organization whose members share a common commitment to economic and social development, open markets, the rule of law, and democracy throughout the Western Hemisphere.

                  And :

                  Council of the Americas members form a collaborative network that supports efforts to conduct business successfully in Latin America.

                  So Tamaryn Nelson worked for an outfit that unabashedly promotes neo-liberalism. And now she works for AI that is headed by the wonderful Suzanne Nossel who is busy dovetailing AI with US foreign policy. And she (Tamaryn Nelson) is writing critical and supposedly contemporary pieces about Ecuador (a country not following the neo-liberal agenda) based on reports that were compiled between 2009 and 2011.

                  Hmm.

                  • McFlock

                    Rather than fixating on AIUSA, maybe you should have another look at my original comment
                             
                    I wasn’t saying Ecuador is as bad as Syria or China. Just that they’re not all that much better than NZ. Maybe worse in some ways. Better in others.
                           

                    • Bill

                      Just working my way through the sources you supplied. Finding stuff out, you know?

                      But sure. Equador is comparable to NZ. We agree. Though I’d wager NZ doesn’t get the same negative coverage from AI or HRW as Equador does. Which would indicate (since we agree that NZ and Equador are ‘much of a muchness’) a political bias to AI and HRW reports, no?

                    • McFlock

                      aye, true.
                         
                      No mention of extrajudicial killings, for example. 

                  • UrbanRascal

                    This thread is certainly entertaining.
                    A real schooling if you like.

                • Bill

                  Press freedoms in Equador

                  One of the most controversial parts of the law is the creation of a regulating body to decide and control the broadcast of “discriminatory, racist, violent, and sexual content.”

                  http://www.as-coa.org/articles/new-legislation-bolsters-challenges-press-freedom-latin-america

                  See. That sounds like NZ and could probably equate to the broadcasting standards here. The other bit was about the press being unable to promote or decry individual politicians during election campaigns. Now see. That sounds like a good thing to me. Broadcast and report the issues. And if you start on character assassinations or promoting certain personalities…or if a news corporation attempts to set the agenda (its own) , then hey. Pay the consequences for undermining or belittling the democratic process.

                  • McFlock

                    The bits about giving more power for citizens to sue journalists and give ministers more power to “demand” air time, colour me not so hot on.

                    • Bill

                      Well. If Labour had been able to demand the air time that was so freely given to John Key….

        • Morrissey 11.1.1.2

          “Do some reading” isn’t even an appeal to authority.

          Actually, it kind of is. It’s an appeal to people like you to actually do some reading. (And here’s a friendly hint: by “reading”, we mean SERIOUS reading, by people with integrity—not the jocular hacks on the Grauniad or the sad state servants at the BBC.

          It seems to be the latest refrain from idealogues who can’t explain their position clearly or support it with actual evidence.

          No, it’s an expression of frustration with people like you who are full of bluster but light on, well, authority.

          • McFlock 11.1.1.2.1

            That’s why I use things like relevant links.
                   
            By the way, an appeal to do reading is not an appeal to authority. And when the links you ask me to read are either nonexistent, irrelevant or demonstrably wrong – well, it’s not very appealing

            • Morrissey 11.1.1.2.1.1

              That’s why I use things like relevant links.

              Over the last week or so, I’ve linked to two of the world’s most respected dissenters—Daniel Ellsberg and Noam Chomsky. I’ve linked to the outstanding British analytical site Media Lens. I’ve also linked to Women Against Rape, which expressed its grave concern at the political nature of these wild allegations.

              But YOU say that these are not “relevant links”. That says nothing about those people and organizations, whose credentials and integrity are unimpeachable; it says a great deal about you.

              By the way, an appeal to do reading is not an appeal to authority.

              Oh yes it is. I have directed you to serious, principled, independent, non-partisan critics and scholars who speak with real authority.

              And when the links you ask me to read are either nonexistent, irrelevant or demonstrably wrong

              Which parts of Chomsky’s or Ellsberg’s arguments were irrelevant or wrong? What is it you don’t like about Women Against Rape? Or Media Lens? And most intriguing of all, please tell us just what exactly is “nonexistent” about any of those people or organizations?

              – well, it’s not very appealing

              I don’t imagine it is very appealing to be shown up as fraudulent or poorly read. Then again, I don’t argue about things I don’t know about. You won’t find me arguing about yacht design, for example, because I don’t have enough knowledge to do so with any authority.

              • McFlock

                You missed the word “relevant”. 
                Chomsky is not a legal expert by training or profession. Nor is he intimately acquainted with the facts of the case. Reread my link of fallacious appeals to authority – you had a comprehension fail the first time.
                     
                That’s why I linked to things like the UK extradition hearing judgements, which outlined the alleged facts, contemporary timelines/reports, and of course the Swedish prosecutors office. 
                     
                And note the use of “or”. Ever made any assertions with no links whatsoever? You? Surely not. 
                     
                And are you saying you know more about:
                     the legal facts of the case in the UK;     
                     the legal facts of the case in Sweden; 
                     the actual circumstances of what happened;
                     the state of human rights in Ecuador;
                     and the secret plans of both the USA and Sweden    
                          
                than you do about yacht design? Or just that you know more than enough about each and every topic to patronise people who actually use relevant links?

                • Morrissey

                  You missed the word “relevant”. Chomsky is not a legal expert by training or profession. Nor is he intimately acquainted with the facts of the case.

                  Chomsky, like anyone else, can research and understand the facts and issues, legal or otherwise, in this case. So can, and does, Daniel Ellsberg. The law is not an advanced mathematical formula; it’s supposed to be understandable, and it is. What part do you think intellectual giants can’t quite understand as opposed to “legal experts” like…. oh, William Hague and Barack Obama?

                  Reread my link of fallacious appeals to authority – you had a comprehension fail the first time.

                  “Appeal to authority”? I have my own thoughts and ideas, and I back them up with authoritative sources. If I skipped the first part of that sentence, then your claim would make sense.

                  That’s why I linked to things like the UK extradition hearing judgements, which outlined the alleged facts, contemporary timelines/reports, and of course the Swedish prosecutors office.

                  Good. That’s why I linked to non-partisan and independent thinkers of proven integrity who share my concern that these wild allegations are nothing more than a pretext to exact state vengeance against a dangerous truth-teller.

                  And note the use of “or”. Ever made any assertions with no links whatsoever? You? Surely not.

                  I state my own opinions on many occasions. Usually, but not always, I back them up—but never with such insultingly lightweight, shamelessly partisan sources as David Aaronovitch or any of the other doctrinal warriors you evidently listen to.

                  And are you saying you know more about:
                  the legal facts of the case in the UK;
                  the legal facts of the case in Sweden;
                  the actual circumstances of what happened;
                  the state of human rights in Ecuador;
                  and the secret plans of both the USA and Sweden

                  than you do about yacht design?

                  Yes.

                  Or just that you know more than enough about each and every topic to patronise people who actually use relevant links?

                  I’m not “patronising” you, I’m challenging you.

                  • McFlock

                    1: Chomsky and Obama probably have a similar working knowledge of the law. Maybe one can research slightly better than the other.
                    But Chomsky vs just one of several career jurists who have spent a lifetime studying law and examining cases? Nope.
                        
                    2: Um, no. Backing up with “authoritative sources” (see 1) is still an appeal to authority. “He says X, therefore X is true”. But it’s not as reliable as “Here he says he saw X, and you can actually go to here where he first said he saw X, and you can even check X yourself here” is what we call “verifiable evidence”. And whether you “own” your thoughts or not is irrelevant to whether your verifiable evidence supports your ideas.
                        
                    3: The only thing you are “challenging” is my ability to explain the basic differences between “verifiable and true statement” and “unsupported assumption”. And the assumption that you are “challenging” me in any other way is patronising, and delusional.
                          

                     

                    • Morrissey

                      1: Chomsky and Obama probably have a similar working knowledge of the law. Maybe one can research slightly better than the other.

                      Obama, unlike Chomsky, has shown contempt for international law, from his refusal to condemn Israel’s murderous “twenty-two days of madness” in 2008-9, his refusal to condemn Israel’s murders of Palestinian politicians and peace activists, or to do anything about its continual depredations in the Occupied Territories, right through to his endorsement of the extra-judicial killing of Osama Bin Laden. There are enormous differences between Chomsky and Obama, in terms of learning, intellect and, above all, integrity.

                      But Chomsky vs just one of several career jurists who have spent a lifetime studying law and examining cases? Nope.

                      And you have just been lecturing ME for appealing to authority!

                      2: Um, no. Backing up with “authoritative sources” (see 1) is still an appeal to authority. “He says X, therefore X is true”. But it’s not as reliable as “Here he says he saw X, and you can actually go to here where he first said he saw X, and you can even check X yourself here” is what we call “verifiable evidence”. And whether you “own” your thoughts or not is irrelevant to whether your verifiable evidence supports your ideas.

                      Fair enough.

                      3: The only thing you are “challenging” is my ability to explain the basic differences between “verifiable and true statement” and “unsupported assumption”. And the assumption that you are “challenging” me in any other way is patronising, and delusional.

                      I was not patronising you. I challenged the integrity of the sources you cited.

                    • McFlock

                      There are enormous differences between Chomsky and Obama, in terms of learning, intellect and, above all, integrity.

                      Maybe. But that is irrelevant as to whether either of them know more about the law or sexual assault investigations than career jurists who have risen to some of the highest courts in their respective countries, both in Sweden and the UK. So reread the link I gave you about fallacious appeals to authority. You obviously didn’t understand it the previous two times you read it. In fact, read the entire article. Can you think why I might think that a career jurist is more reliable than a non-jurist (no matter how intelligent) in matters of law? Take your time.
                           
                       I was not patronising you. I challenged the integrity of the sources you cited.”   

                        Actually, it kind of is. It’s an appeal to people like you to actually do some reading. (And here’s a friendly hint: by “reading”, we mean SERIOUS reading, by people with integrity—not the jocular hacks on the Grauniad or the sad state servants at the BBC.>

                      Yeah, that’s patronising, especially when I have repeatedly cited the actual court judgements or their summaries. Those were a bit more serious than even an opinion piece by Chomsky or Ellsberg. 

    • Morrissey 11.2

      You clearly haven’t kept up with Human Rights Watch, and its tattered reputation.

      Something else you need to read up on, my friend.

      • McFlock 11.2.1

        Thankyou, sensei.
        I will give that (in no particular order) vague, unsourced, arrogant and delusional comment all the deep contemplation it deserves.
             
        And I think you’ve single-handedly invented “flake propaganda”. 

        • Morrissey 11.2.1.1

          …vague, unsourced, arrogant and delusional comment

          I have directed you, and anyone else who wants to learn something, to several scholarly, analytical sites. Your labeling my comments as “vague” and “unsourced” is nothing other than the most desperate kind of mud-slinging.

          The “arrogant and delusional” charge is interesting; could you explain exactly why you chose those descriptors? There seems to be no basis for them, other than your frustration and your evident dislike of me.

          And I think you’ve single-handedly invented “flake propaganda”.

          Really? By quoting and citing heavyweights like Chomsky and Ellsberg? Should I go for intellectual and moral giants like William Hague, like you do?

          • McFlock 11.2.1.1.1

             vague: not even a subject area as a hint, just an implication that HRW are in some way imperfect (isn’t every organisation?)
               
            unsourced: Self expanatory. Had you addressed the shortcomings of HRW before? Sorry I missed it.
                
            arrogant: The concept that you speak from a position of knowledge, rather than realising that “agreeing with something” does not necessarily mean “supporting evidence on a mildly tangential topic”
               
            delusional: where to start? delusions of adequacy, as well as delusions of friendship and delusions of knowing basic english 

          • McFlock 11.2.1.1.2

            by the way, did I quote Hague or link to him? Where?

            • Morrissey 11.2.1.1.2.1

              did I quote Hague or link to him?

              Every time you repeat the wild allegations against Assange, you are amplifying and repeating William Hague’s talking points. Whether you take them straight from the Grauniad or British state media, or through one of their mirror sites (NewstalkZB, National Radio, grim-faced Rachel Smalley on TV3) you are repeating his lies.

              Where?

              Circumspice.

              • McFlock

                So the Swedish prosecutor’s office is a front for Hague? Good to know.
                         
                Frankly, that’s your problem right there: you assume that because A is adjacent to B, then because B is  adjacent to C, A must also be  adjacent to C. And because C is adjacent to D, A, is also adjacent to D, and so on through to Z.
                       
                That’s why you think a Chomsky piece on the US hate Assange and would love to torture him = Assange did not commit rape that night = relevant to whether defending Wikileaks means continuing rape culture and denial by immediately assuming that complainants lie.      
                     
                Most of your immediate connections aren’t to bad, but your extrapolations suck shit.

                • Morrissey

                  So the Swedish prosecutor’s office is a front for Hague? Good to know.

                  No, William Hague is far too stupid to manage such an operation. But, almost certainly, someone in the Swedish government —not “the Swedish prosecutor’s office”—is certainly a major player in this bizarre, Soviet-style attack on Assange. As we saw in the equally bizarre case against Peter Ellis, all that’s needed is for a few key figures to believe, or pretend to believe, the charges and the others in the hierarchy will simply fall into line and do their jobs, no matter how unsavoury and dishonest those jobs might be.

                  Frankly, that’s your problem right there: you assume that because A is adjacent to B, then because B is adjacent to C, A must also be adjacent to C. And because C is adjacent to D, A, is also adjacent to D, and so on through to Z.

                  I assume none of those things. I can SEE and HEAR people repeating the fantastical and brutally cynical allegations of those who seek the destruction of this truth-teller. Having “liberal” fora like The Standard clogged up by people repeating this black propaganda is perhaps just as important as having the Grauniad‘s management on board with the campaign.

                  That’s why you think a Chomsky piece on the US hate Assange and would love to torture him = Assange did not commit rape that night = relevant to whether defending Wikileaks means continuing rape culture and denial by immediately assuming that complainants lie.

                  Chomsky is only one of many concerned citizens who recognize the real reason the U.S.. and U.K. (along with their meek Scandinavian accomplice) are pursuing these fantastical charges with such indefatigable zeal. I think you recognize it, too; one of these days you’ll come round to what reasonable people think: that if the Swedish prosecutors genuinely want to speak to Assange, but their notoriously weak government refuses to assure his safety, then they can talk to him in the Ecuadorian embassy.

                  Most of your immediate connections aren’t too bad, but your extrapolations suck shit.

                  I have not made those extrapolations.

                  • McFlock

                    Option B is that Assange actually has a case to answer regarding rape and sexual assault, and Chomsky is projecting his experience in outlining and uncovering hegemonistic conspiracies  onto a routine investigation.

                    • Morrissey

                      Option B is that Assange actually has a case to answer regarding rape and sexual assault,

                      The allegations are bizarre, and appear to be a pretext for rendering him to face the vengeance of the U.S. regime, which is notorious for its contempt for the law.

                      …and Chomsky is projecting his experience in outlining and uncovering hegemonistic conspiracies onto a routine investigation.

                      Chomsky does not “project”; he looks at the evidence thoroughly and analyzes it compellingly—in other words, he does the job of, and infuriates, second-rate journalists such as the duds on the Grauniad.

                    • McFlock

                      The allegations are bizarre, and appear to be a pretext for rendering him to face the vengeance of the U.S. regime, which is notorious for its contempt for the law.
                       
                      Two points. The first is that the allegations are by no means bizarre for sexual assault allegations and crimes. The second is actually what I was talking about earlier: you assume that “the allegations are bizarre”, which is close to (but not the same as) “the allegations are not credible”. I don’t have a problem with your apparent logic that “if the allegations are not credible, then the investigation might be a pretext for the US”. I just think that here you are conflating “bizarre” (outside your experience) with “not credible” and its concomitant conspiracy.
                       

                • Morrissey

                  Yeah, that’s patronising, especially when I have repeatedly cited the actual court judgements or their summaries.

                  Actually, looking back on what I wrote, it is a bit condescending and patronising. Please accept my apologies for that.

  12. xtasy 12

    There is a major difference between the history of Latin America and NZ. They had their type of fight for independence and revolution of the former Spanish settlers and bourgeoisie under Bolivar and another leader centuries ago, a bit like the US had their one under George Washington and his mates.

    The dependence on the US corporate power and US and some other leading economies has also created a strong sense of independence in a political sense.

    NZ never had such developments. It was a colony, then a dominion and even after independence was clinging to the Motherland closely, untile the UK decided to join the EU and focus on trading with closer neighbouring countries.

    Although NZ has become more diversified economically, in legal, political, social and “cultural” terms the mindset still nowadays remains quite focused on the UK, also Australia and thus anglo saxon links.

    It will take time to change. So in reality NZ is very far away from anything like what the government of Ecuador had dared to do.

  13. infused 13

    Only reason Ecuador is standing up is because the Prime Minister has an election to win. Also, it’s sweden that wants him.

    I agree about .com though. Although, I can see him winning this one.

    “(I don’t want to start yet another thread on the rights or wrongs of Assange’s actions here, I’m just noting the bravery of Ecuador)”

    Yet you’re asking for one.

    • Morrissey 13.1

      Only reason Ecuador is standing up is because the Prime Minister has an election to win.

      You know, I don’t go on to car sites and start sounding off about carburetor idle speeds and valvetrain adjustments because I know next to nothing about cars.

      So why are you posting up opinions on something about which you clearly know nothing?

      Also, it’s sweden that wants him.

      Are you really THAT ignorant? Or simply dishonest?

    • Populuxe1 13.2

      Also you will recall that Ecuador’s mineral exploration, oil sales and loan servicing are increasingly dominated by China, and Assange is a bit of a darling in China – you will recall the official Beijing Daily touted him for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010, mostly because it gets up the nose of the Americans. So it wouldn’t hurt Ecuador all that much.

  14. Morrissey 14

    I don’t want to start yet another thread on the rights or wrongs of Assange’s actions here,

    Well, you just have started another one. What was WRONG, exactly, about Assange choosing to publish the evidence of U.S. war crimes?

    I’m just noting the bravery of Ecuador.

    And what about the bravery of Julian Assange?

    • Polish Pride 14.1

      +1…

    • Daveosaurus 14.2

      What was RIGHT, exactly, about Assange choosing to rape those women in Sweden?

      • Morrissey 14.2.1

        What was RIGHT, exactly, about Assange choosing to rape those women in Sweden?

        Unlike the overwhelming evidence of U.S. war crimes in Iraq that Assange released to the public, there is no evidence to support your sleazy allegation.

        • Populuxe1 14.2.1.1

          Are you saying those two women lied about what happened to them?

          • Colonial Viper 14.2.1.1.1

            That’s for a court to decide. And before a court can decide charges have to be laid. And before charges can be laid, Assange needs to be questioned again. Which Swedish authorities could do today, they also could have done yesterday, a week ago, a month ago, 3 months ago, 6 months ago, 12 months ago,…

            • McFlock 14.2.1.1.1.1

              Or a couple of years ago if he hadn’t skipped the country.

              • Colonial Viper

                Wow, back to using the pejorative “skipped”?

                The Swedes knew he was going. Swedish airport security and immigration OK’d him to leave the country. They stamped his passport authorising his departure. They didn’t even bother to ask him to stay, as a favour, on a voluntary basis.

                • McFlock

                  ooo sorry. You’re right.
                  He coincidentally left the country shortly after his lawyer, who was not in contact with him at all, was told by the prosecutors that charges were likely going to be filed after the second interview.
                           
                  On a separate note, the Eiffel Tower is unsafe due to rust and is going to be sold for scrap. Interested in buying it cheap? 

                  • Colonial Viper

                    who was not in contact with him at all, was told by the prosecutors that charges were likely going to be filed after the second interview.

                    So have the second interview and file the charges. Do it today. The ball is in the Swedish prosecutor’s court. Don’t know why they are delaying the process of justice for the two women complainants.

                    • McFlock

                      Oh bullshit. They had arranged to do it two years ago but he skipped left the country. And then fought extradition all the way. Then decided to couch surf in an embassy.

            • Populuxe1 14.2.1.1.1.2

              Then it is wrong and offensive not to believe them in the first instance

              • Colonial Viper

                Complainants and their complaints get treated seriously and they are afforded every courtesy during investigations; suspects (and even charged accused) get the presumption of innocence and other legal rights.

                Alternatively just summarily try and convict Assange in absentia and be done with due process.

                • Populuxe1

                  The point being that the revictimisation of victims it a cheap and low thing to do, but Assange’s hootin’ and hollerin’ supporters seem to have no compunction about doing exactly that. It is fair to say that the Assange fanboys don’t care whether he has a fair trial or not – they don’t want him to go to trial at all and will continue to call these women liars and worse.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    As has been said on The Standard previously..by weka perhaps (although in different words)…that it is quite possible that Assange is guilty as sin, and that the women are being used as international political pawns, all at the same time.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Well that would be business as usual, but I could never stand to see shits being made over as martyrs.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      True, true. IMO Assange can’t make himself a martyr. Only Sweden and the USA can accomplish that. And they’ve gone a long way down that road already.

                    • McFlock

                      So if he did do it, how many women should he be allowed to rape before you decide he should take the risk of facing a court of law?    
                               
                      How many women are expendable because he chose to be the face of Wikileaks? 

                    • Colonial Viper

                      A hypothetical? As in how many rapes Assange might get away with while he is holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy for the foreseeable future?

                      I would’ve thought none, but perhaps your opinion differs.

                      As I’ve said to you before, I think Assange needs to be questioned by Swedish investigators asap. And IF he is charged, he should front up to a Swedish court asap. At the same time, Sweden and the US should give reassurances that they will not begin extradition proceedings against him on wholly unrelated matters.

                      The women complainants get their full measure of justice without Assange getting whisked off to gawds knows where, Gitmo or wherever.

                    • McFlock

                      Oh, so no hypotheticals then?
                            
                      It’s okay when you said “that it is quite possible that Assange is guilty as sin, and that the women are being used as international political pawns, all at the same time”.
                           
                      Do the ramifications of that hypothetical theory disturb you? 
                         
                      Maybe you’re beginning to get the point. 

                • McFlock

                  As a human being, give the complainants the respect of not assuming they’re making it up.  Just as you (like me) have avoided the assumption that he definitely did it.
                               
                  As you say, the courts are the correct place to decide between the two parties, if applicable. 
                             
                  A pity he’s avoiding due process.
                   

                  • Colonial Viper

                    As a human being, give the complainants the respect of not assuming they’re making it up.

                    Assuming that they are making up their complaints is neither treating them seriously or with courtesy.

                    And as I said, the justice system should treat their complaints seriously and with courtesy. Whether or not they are making up the complaints is up for a judge/jury to decide.

                    Just as you (like me) have avoided the assumption that he definitely did it.

                    Sure. But in your heart you know that Assange is a devious lying prick.

                    • McFlock

                      Nah.
                           
                      I just know that he’s avoiding a rape investigation.
                               

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Investigators are welcome to see him today. He can’t avoid that.

                    • McFlock

                      He avoided it before.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Given that Assange is holed up in a small building completely surrounded by armed UK police, he ain’t avoiding the investigators this time.

                      In fact, it appears to me that it is the Swedish investigators who are assiduously avoiding him.

                    • McFlock

                      Nah.
                           
                      My guess is that they don’t see any point to continuing the process when they can’t do anything about it. Given what they apparently told his lawyer (on the day he coincidentally left the country), and the UK courts’ comments about the case against him.
                             
                      Nice accident of jurisdiction that they lay formal charges and detention so late in the process, eh. That boy just has oodles of luck when it comes to sexual assault investigations, don’t he?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      My guess is that they don’t see any point to continuing the process when they can’t do anything about it.

                      In international negotiations, formal charges would be significant leverage to effect pressure on the parties involved. That, along with removing doubt that no practical charges can be laid, would bring advantage to the Swedish side.

                      Your argument comes short in merit in comparison.

                      The Swedish investigators are avoiding Assange; there is no other obvious reason why they would forego those political advantages.

                      Nice accident of jurisdiction that they lay formal charges and detention so late in the process, eh. That boy just has oodles of luck when it comes to sexual assault investigations, don’t he?

                      Continue with the tabloid quality innuendo by all means. But happenchance is not admissable as evidence.

                    • McFlock

                      You’ve already said that if charge were laid you don’t think Assange would surrender himself.
                           
                      Are you now suggesting that if charges were laid Ecuador would hand him over? 

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I’m suggesting that Sweden could remove doubt and gain leverage by questioning, then charging Assange. Who knows what change in the diplomatic and judicial landscape might result from that.

                      IMO the US is certainly preparing (or has already finalised) charges against Assange, on unrelated matters.

                    • McFlock

                      So the best reason you can come up for a complete waste of time is “who knows”?
                         
                      I have another prediction: even if the Swedes did interview him and subsequently charge him:
                      not only would he not voluntarily come out,
                      not only would Ecuador not kick him out,
                      you’d still be defending justifying why he was evading sexual assault charges.
                                     
                      And the US is irrelevant to extradition to Sweden on non-political matters. From the UK.
                         

                    • weka

                      And as I said, the justice system should treat their complaints seriously and with courtesy. Whether or not they are making up the complaints is up for a judge/jury to decide.
                       

                      CV, I’m pretty sure that in NZ at least (and I assume in Sweden) both the Police and Crown Prosecutor have to be believe the complainants in order for the case to be progressed. This belief is based on assessment of the evidence and knowledge of the law. This of course isn’t proof of guilt on the accused’s part, but we’re not talking about that.
                       
                      The way you have framed your statement neatly encapsulates the problem with trying rape cases – that complainants get put on trial too. Most complainants in rape trials have in fact been raped, and being being put on de facto trial is often further trauma. It’s why so few women lay complaints. This makes rape trials somewhat unique.

                    • Murray Olsen

                      I found this interesting on the Swedish justice system. It’s not exactly what I’d expected:
                      http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/08/20/a-tale-of-two-swedens/

                    • McFlock

                      Interesting, although I do wonder whether Assange fits the demographic of immigrants who are targeted. He seemed to have a bit of a fan club when he was there.
                            
                      And none of the issues raised are particularly relevant to the case at hand as parallel evidence that he’d get an unfair hearing.

    • Populuxe1 14.3

      It was wrong not to filter that information is nuch a way that it didn’t immediately put the lives of a whole bunch of US personell in jeopardy. That was thoughtless, reckless, and tantamount to murder. DO NO HARM.

  15. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 15

    Yes.

    Let’s make ourselves a haven for accused rapists. We could send them all to Whanganui. That will help our international reputation.

    • Morrissey 15.1

      Let’s make ourselves a haven for accused rapists.

      What an unfunny halfwit you are.

  16. With John Key as our leader we have become a lapdog for America.

    Wall Street is the home of the financial terriorists and it is John Keys working environment, being one of the financial terriorists who have caused the greatest crisis since the great depression he is of course eager to protect his mates in the American system.

    Who could ever think John Key is working in the interests of New Zealand

  17. Fortran 17

    If Assange gets to Sweden, for whatever reason, he will be “renditioned” to Guantanamo by the USA in the dead of night, on a US military flight.

    • McFlock 17.1

      If Assange goes to Ecuador, for whatever reason, Wikileaks won’t be leaking anything about extrajudicial killings or punitive slander cases by government officials against journalists in that country.

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.1

        If the US becomes a strong free democracy again, US based journalists will do it.

        Currently though, the recently passed National Defence Authorisation Act allows the US to lock up journalists without charge, indefinitely.

        Their actions in condemning Julian Assange and wikileaks is also inexcusable. Assange leaked nothing. He was a publisher of information provided to him. Just like any newspaper or media outlet.

        So much for the First Amendment.

        • McFlock 17.1.1.1

          No argument that “land of the free and home of the brave” is a sick joke.
                   
          My point was the conflict of interest that means we won’t be seeing any wikileaks that show Ecuador in a bad light. Unless he has a tick sheet of embassies he can jump into and is planning to work through.

          • Colonial Viper 17.1.1.1.1

            Perhaps if we assume Wikileaks = Assange you could be right.

            • McFlock 17.1.1.1.1.1

              Or if Wikileaks admins want to keep Assange safe. 

              • Colonial Viper

                At the end of the day an element of quid pro quo is going to be involved. You want to stay working for your employer, don’t go spreading shit around town about your boss and their spouse.

                • McFlock

                  Lucky Ecuador’s a paradise with no institutional abuses then, eh. 

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Yeah. I guess you got to write off about 170 of the world’s 208 sovereign countries.

                    • McFlock

                      Yep.
                      It’s difficult to dodge a rape investigation when you’re a human rights activist.
                      edit: without appearing hypocritical, of course.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey the Swedish want to delay giving the women justice, its their perogative. Or they could question Assange today if they wanted to and go on to pressing charges by tomorrow.

                    • McFlock

                      So your assertion is that if they interviewed him and filed charges on that basis, he’d say “fair cop, I’m coming out”?
                               
                      Based on his actions so far?
                              
                      Much laughter. 

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Oh no, I expect Assange won’t. What it will rule out is the possibility that no charges will be laid because there is nothing to answer for in a court of law.

                      And the judicial process moves another step forwards.

                    • McFlock

                      The odds of that seem rather slim. Given the facts as outlined in the extradition process, and what the prosecutors told his lawyer on the same day he purely coincidentally left the country. 

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Happenchance isn’t admissable as evidence mate. Tabloid speculation yes, criminal courts no.

                    • McFlock

                      So we’re just left with the UK courts.
                             
                      Although with luck like that he should have paid his own bail out of his lottery winnings. 

      • Morrissey 17.1.2

        Wikileaks won’t be leaking anything about extrajudicial killings or punitive slander cases by government officials against journalists in that country.

        Maybe you’re thinking of Ecuador when it was still a dictatorship, backed by the U.S.

        It’s a democracy now, which seems to upset you no end.

  18. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 18

    Let’s demonstrate our independence by giving Charles Manson asylum.

  19. xtasy 20

    Culture de Ecuador -

    As much as I was horrified, but this rates amongst the first shots on Google and You Tube, I am afraid.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rs1ILU1CHSo

    A small, neglected, traditionally foreign corp controlled (banana fruit co’s from US anyone?) andean country, small and relatively over-populated, but with a fair amount of history, cultura and exotic fauna and flora.

    Fair enough, so human rights are now supposed to be on the agenda, while they were a bit neglected before. An election is looming too, so do not forget that.

    For the interest of Polynesians, this country is where the fabled Con Tiki Huiracotcha sailed off from to “discover” Eastern Polynesia and to establish some trade and population movements between ancient Latin America and the islands in the South Pacific. Some scientists like Thor Heyerdahl made important discoveries, but in NZ it is all about “Lapita” culture, the settlement from west to east, which is only part of the whole story.

    Enlightenment is no strength in most of Aotearoa, I am afraid. I am still waiting for a positive change though.

  20. xtasy 21

    The nicer side of the story (for tourists and sweet talked visitors) -

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xM-o1eesn4M&feature=related

    I have no doubt Ecuador is a very exciting and beautiful place, but we also have an expectation of the whole truth about the country and its people. So the authorities of Ecuador will be most welcomed to deliver.

    Meanwhile Julian appears to be safe, at least.

  21. xtasy 22

    Latin America is a cultural planet of its own, much to discover, beyond “equador” so to say:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wb4RauhteFA

  22. xtasy 23

    Musica de Equador -

    the real stuff, from Europe or Canada -

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yta3iqbUlGc&feature=fvsr

    strange not much comes here.

    Top quality and authentic.

    Viva el pueblo de Ecuador Y America Latina!

  23. xtasy 24

    Musica Latina America de Bolivia

    A bit unusaul an d bizarre perhaps for Kiwis, but worth exploring:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UhSQwsqSIw

    From Lake Titicaca and the Tihuanaco culture comes part of true Polynesian culture too, look and study the statues and symbols from there and compare with Eastern Polynesia, another cultural lie, that all of Polynesia comes from Melanesia, South East Asia and so forth, there is much more to Polynesian culture and history, partly originating in SOUTH AMERICA!

  24. captain hook 25

    113th on the list for freedom of the press.

    • McFlock 25.1

      NZ’s at 13.
      Just behind Sweden.
              
      The US is at 47. 

    • Bill 25.2

      Who compiles the list, who are their backers and or funders and what are their criteria for determining those things that are to be considered press freedoms?

      • McFlock 25.2.1

        Failure to Google?

        Reporters Without Borders do the Press Freedom Index.
               
        I’m sure they’re just lackeys of US imperialists. 

        • Bill 25.2.1.1

          No, I googled the list and saw it was Reporters Without Borders. And although I have just a sneaky suspicion you are being facetious with you “I’m sure they’re just lackeys…” comment, the fact is that they recieve funding from, among others, the International Republican Institute which is an arm of the Republican Party that specialises in meddling in elections in foreign countries They also have close ties to the “Center for a Free Cuba” and are generally regarded as being particularly biased and scathing towards any developing country or state that is left leaning and not ‘a friend’ of Washington.

          But by all means take ‘Reporters Without Borders’ at face value if you want.

          • McFlock 25.2.1.1.1

            Yeah I had a bit of a laugh when I saw that – but then of course they changed direction after that director left several years ago. Any criticism of their ranking based on current events? None of the other rankings that I know more about the relevant countries seem to be particularly out of whack.

            Nice to know you’re smart enough to use google, and disingeuous enough to ask a question you think you already know the answer to.

            • Bill 25.2.1.1.1.1

              You say they’ve ‘changed direction’. Maybe. Maybe not.

              You ask if I’ve any criticism of their rankings. Well one that jumps out straight away is Mexico where, as an example of press freedoms in Mexico, (was it twenty- odd?) journalists’ bodies were ‘displayed’ from a bridge – as a warning to other journalists. (I believe The Guardian carried the story if your unfamiliar with it)

              And Mexico is ranked 149.

              Meanwhile Cuba is ranked at 167. (Below Saudi Arabia and other such bastions of press (and general) freedoms)

              Now, I don’t know too much about how the press is structured in Cuba. But I very much doubt journalists are in any peril whatsoever. And state run does not de facto mean that it is more given to censoring news than any large corporate press entity.

              So maybe, given that RWB has ‘changed direction’ as you claim, you’d be able to offer a feasible explanation as to why a country that systematically murders journalists and where heads of drug cartels dictate to newspapers what stories they can and cannot cover and then dictates how a story will be covered if it is to be covered is so much more free than Cuba? ‘Cause I just can’t figure it.

              Unless,of course, there really hasn’t been any change of culture worth mentioning at RWB afterall?

              • McFlock

                So you have an issue with the ranking of one country in 200, and that lets you believe that Ecuador is a wonderful paradise.

                There’s a bit of desperation there.

                • Bill

                  Couldn’t reply last night. But.

                  So you have an issue with the ranking of one country in 200…

                  No.

                  and that lets you believe that Ecuador is a wonderful paradise.

                  No.

                  And there’s no desperation. More a resignation to the fact you are incapable of engaging in a worthwhile level of discussion. And I’m resigned to the likelihood that you haven’t much ability with regards critical thought, reading and evaluation. Which would all help explain your apparent general lack of comprehension.

                  Of course, it also crosses my mind (having looked at the nature of your responses through-out this entire thread) that rather than suffering from the simple need to be spoon fed your opinions, the problem is one of simple trolling. And that I should keep an open mind and one eye out for that possibility in future posts.

                  • McFlock

                    Whatever, dude. I’m sure Ecuador’s a free paradise. Shame I only have your word for it.

                    [Bill] – Your on my troll watch as of now. Well done son. I’ll be giving you a single reminder/warning when I (yup, it’s arbitrary)consider you’ve crossed the line and then you’ll be gone on a wee holiday.

        • Matt 25.2.1.2

          By the way, how does Google (Mountain View, CA. with data centers everywhere) manage to index all this subversive truth stuff under the oppressive US regime? 

          • Bill 25.2.1.2.1

            Who said there was any clampdown on information being made available? I don’t think anyone made that claim, did they? There’s a lot of info out there and most has an inbuilt bias. You want to evaluate stuff and arrive at a reasonable understanding or level of comprehension? Then get to know where the info you are reading, or that you’re relying on to evaluate other info, is coming from and what it’s likely bias is.

            I mean, shit. Don’t they teach that basic kind of stuff at school any more? Seriously.

            • Matt 25.2.1.2.1.1

              Hm, America is becoming the new Nazi Germany, Assange is being set up for extradition and possible execution for not having done much of anything, in the US journalists can now be snapped up on a whim, yet somehow the vast majority of what fuels the paranoia brigade comes from behind the star spangled curtain.. Classic. 

              Jesus, if this is what passes for an evil empire these days, sign me up. 

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    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Tribute for Maungaharuru- Tangitu settlement
    Labour Member of Parliament for Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri paid tribute to Maungaharuru-Tangitu today as their Treaty of Waitangi settlement became law. “The Bill acknowledges Treaty breaches that left Maungaharuru-Tangitu virtually landless. Today we were reminded of the history, mamae, loss...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Our government: still no idea
    Happy Easter everyone, bad weather aside. A previous post of mine was called “The Government with no ideas”.  Unsurprisingly, the theme of the piece was of a current government thoroughly absent of any creative ideas or solutions to assist more...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • 12 things Forbes has to say about NZs about to burst economic bubble
    Forbes is not known for their socialist or left wing activism, so when they predict a grim economic failure, we should should collectively poo ourselves a little. National often get given this perception that somehow they are better economic mangers....
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • That Sinking Feeling: Labour’s urgent need for persuasive words and coura...
    THE LATEST ROY MORGAN POLL has Labour on 28.5 percent (down 3.5 percent) and the Greens on 11.5 percent (down 1.5 percent). At 40 percent, the combined vote of the two main centre-left parties has fallen 5 percentage points since...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Why the Labour movement should support a Universal Basic Income
    The Mana movement’s support of the idea of a universal basic income is a welcome development. It could become one of the litmus issues that define the party and prove extremely popular. If Mana are in a position to do...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Legal high and cannabis regulation
    I marched through Henderson last month with my fellow Westies to express our concern about the impact of so called “legal highs” on our community. Some people chanted loudly calling for banning, some expressing anger at the parliamentarians who voted...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney’s Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members’ ballot. “It’s...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Resignation rates among cops soar The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Work visa problems need monitoring The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today. The report...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • A case study of racism by Police at Auckland Airport
    A couple of days ago I returned from Samoa after attending a family matter and some contract work. Spending a few days in the warmth of our homeland was welcome relief from the cold weather starting to make its presence...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • An acute shortage of emergency youth housing
    The housing crisis is effecting everyone in Christchurch but some are more vulnerable than others. Recently I attended a workshop on emergency youth housing hosted by the 298 Youth Health Centre, who I worked for from 2001-2003. Over fifty people...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Manufacturing Matters to New Zealand – 17 April
    The Labour Party announcement today recognises the simple truth that the manufacturing sector really matters to New Zealand’s economy as a whole, based on the part manufacturing plays in the growth of the added value element in the tradable sector,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Young Kiwi to Represent New Zealand at Premier Youth Forum
    Young Kiwi to Represent New Zealand at Premier Youth Forum FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Commonwealth Youth New Zealand Executive Director, Aaron Hape, has been selected to represent New Zealand at 33Fifty, the Commonwealth Youth Leadership Programme,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Lisa Owen interviews Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei
    Greens propose new ministerial disclosure regime based on British rules, requiring quarterly declarations of ministers' meetings, travel and hospitality....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Politicians Should Maintain Workers’ Easter Break
    Family First NZ is rejecting calls for any liberalisation of Easter trading laws and says that workers deserve a break to spend time with their families. “This is not an issue about choice as has been argued. For many workers,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Lisa Owen interviews experts on Antacrtica
    Lisa Owen interviews Chuck Kennicutt and Gary Wilson on Antarctica Headlines: Top Antarctic scientists warns New Zealand "not ready" for worst as ice shelves and sea ice in Antarctica retreat and the climate changes Gary Wilson: "Can...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Beyond the State – NZ State Houses from Modest to Modern
    As part of the our 'Active Hand of Government' series for 2014, we present Bill McKay, Senior Lecturer, School of Architecture and Planning, speaking to his new publication....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress
    Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Families before commerce at Easter The retail workers’ union has hit back at critics of New Zealand's modest Easter trading restrictions. "Some things are more important than going to the mall, and for just three and a half days each...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Easter trading laws archaic, in need of overhaul
    Press release: ACT New Zealand Easter trading laws are outdated and in need of a major overhaul, said ACT leader Jamie Whyte today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • ACC’s Strategy to stop compensation using ACC 167 Form
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  • Workers support plain packaging of tobacco
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