3rd time today – when will they learn?

Written By: - Date published: 10:20 pm, January 8th, 2010 - 98 comments
Categories: activism, police - Tags:

As lprent has already posted: I was arrested today for chanting on a megaphone. This is the third time I have been arrested for the same thing.

As I mentioned yesterday, there was the broiler conference protests in 2005 which led to a precedent being set in the High Court that it is valid to use a megaphone at a protest. In 2007 I was arrested for chanting on a megaphone outside a shop selling fur as part of Auckland Animal Action’s Fur-Free Auckland Campaign. In that case I explained to the officers that I had the right to use a megaphone, and ignored warnings to cease and desist. At the police station, the more senior police officer spoke to me about it and realized that I was right. They then amended the charge to obstructing police, which was apparently because I refused to engage (after a certain point) with the officers about the use of the megaphone. I went through the usual preliminary hearing and status hearing, and a few months later turned up to my defended hearing all ready to argue the case. The police decided to withdraw the charge at the last minute, so I never got the chance to argue the case in front of a judge. I suspect they dropped the charges because they had been told the basis of my planned defense by my ex, the spy.

Today, the police clearly also came to the same conclusion – that my behavior was not disorderly. I have again been charged with obstruction, and while I won’t find out what is alleged against me until court next Thursday, I suspect it will be similar to that in my fur-protest case in 2007. I look forward to winning in court.

After the usual couple of hours in a cell (fortunately with my friend Ruth, rather than on my own) and being fingerprinted etc, it came time to sign my bail form and be released. I looked at the bail form, and saw that like the others I was going to be banned from within 500 meters of the protest location. I informed the Constable that I wasn’t going to be signing the form, and he said I’d be locked up for the weekend. I still refused to sign the form, quite prepared to stay in a cell for the weekend if it meant not having to comply with an unlawful bail condition.

Bradford v Police [1995] is a very clear precedent from the High Court on the matter of bail conditions relating to protests. Sue Bradford was arrested in 1995 for protesting at the Commonwealth Heads of State meeting for obstructing a public road. She was given a bail condition not to protest at all anywhere. The condition was appealed to the High Court, and two important legal clarifications came out of that. The first, that the bail condition has to be related to the offense alleged. This meant that the bail condition was firstly amended to say she couldn’t protest at the Commonwealth Heads of State meeting, rather than a general protest ban. The second clarification was that bail conditions cannot unreasonably limit the rights affirmed under the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990. This led to the bail condition being amended further to say she couldn’t protest unlawfully at the Commonwealth Heads of State meeting.

So following Bradford v Police, if the police want to put conditions like that on, they should say something along the lines of “Not to protest unlawfully at the tennis stadium”. Aside from the general issues that I couldn’t attend university next week, go to the hospital if I got sick, or possibly even stay at my house (while another condition says I have to reside at my address), the general principle is flawed and I would never agree to such an unreasonable restriction of my civil liberties.

I was moved into an overnight cell and fully expected to be locked up for the weekend. Not long after that the Constable (who BTW was quite nice) came back to my cell and asked me if it made a difference that Shahar Peer had lost the tennis, and therefore wouldn’t be playing in the next few days. I said it made no difference at all and that I had no real plans to keep protesting but objected to the condition on principle. The Constable went away and came back a few minutes to say his Sergeant had decided to be nice and drop the condition. I was very relieved not to have to stay in a cell all weekend!

Finally, I thought I’d address a couple of points that keep coming up in the comments threads on this issue.

While I totally support the objectives of the protests at the tennis, it’s not something I would usually attend myself. I have enough of my own pet causes keeping me busy. The reason I decided to attend was because of the police reaction to the protests – police reaction or overreaction to legitimate protests is a pet cause of mine. I wanted to attend to help those protesting reaffirm their right to do so.

Unlike many people have portrayed, we are not protesting against the “poor Israeli tennis player”. I would have no problem with Shahar Peer coming to New Zealand for a visit or even to play tennis. I do have a problem with New Zealand having sporting connections with Israel, and in this case Shahar Peer is essentially representing the Israel state. Further, even though the Israeli embassy would actually be a more appropriate place to protest, the fact is protests are conducted to draw attention to a cause, and there would be very little attention at an embassy. Unfortunately to get the corporate media interested, it is necessary to be controversial. My hope is that by drawing attention to the cause, however controversial the tactics used to do so, we will generate some debate on the issues within the public. Change only occurs with discourse.

I also want to make it very clear that this is not a racist protest. It is a political protest against the Israeli government, not the individual Israeli people. There are many Israeli’s who disagree with what their government is doing. A great example of that is Marek Edelman, the last surviving leader of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Before his death in October, Edelman was denied an award by Israel due to his frequent criticisms of the Israeli state.

As Shahar Peer has herself said, she is not phased by the protests. Unlike the New Zealand Police, she recognises our right to protest, despite disagreeing with us and supporting the policies of the Israel state. She has been quoted as saying:

They’re doing what they want. Everyone can do whatever they want, as long as I’m winning I don’t care.

Further, Shahar Peer in good humour joked that the police arresting Ruth and I early into the match today is what made her lose:

I guess it wasn’t loud enough for me to play good because the other days it was very loud and I won the matches.

While a couple of the protesters were chanting chants directly at Shahar Peer, Ruth and I today leading the chants on the megaphones were sticking to those more focused on the policies of the Israeli state.

Note: Apologies for any American spelling in this post. I’ve been writing this post in the car on the way to Otaki, and Lynn decided to use his stupid American spell-checker on my it when we stopped in Rotorua for dinner. I can’t be bothered fixing it.

Note 2: Just finishing up, and lprent just got pulled over for speeding. Just before the police lights went on behind us, Lprent commented that his speed was a little bit fast after going over the hill. He was just slowing down. How annoying. Like we haven’t had enough of the police for one day! Unfortunately, the police actions here were well within the law 🙁

98 comments on “3rd time today – when will they learn?”

  1. Gooner 1

    there was the broiler conference protests in 2005 which led to a precedent being set in the High Court that it is valid to use a megaphone at a protest.

    Isn’t this too general. What if you chanted into the megaphone “fuck the police, fuck the Israelis, fuck everything you murdering Israeli fuckers?”. Would that be valid?

    I don’t know about the “broiler conference protest” case, but I very much doubt generic use of a megaphone is valid or lawful no matter what.

    I’m not calling you a liar, I’d just like to see that judgment. BTW, I think society needs people like you to test the law so I back you from that perspective. I just doubt your ardent belief of megaphone use is properly held.

    Captcha: “slow” (as in down!)

  2. rocky 2

    Of course yelling obscenities would warrant a charge of disorderly or offensive behaviour. You can read the judgment – look at the link on that to my post yesterday, in that post I link directly to the judgment.

    • Gooner 2.1

      Okay, read it.

      I come back to my original quote “I very much doubt generic use of a megaphone is valid or lawful no matter what.

      I don’t know what you were doing at the Tennis, but considering you were the defendant in the Rees case I guess you know the boundaries fairly well. And I don’t know, and maybe you don’t as well, if any complaints were made from spectators or members of the public. That’ll be the key, as Asher J said:

      There being no evidence from the Police that serious annoyance had been caused to any member of the community from the actions of Ms Rees. the threshold beyond which the criminal law intervenes was not crossed. This was not disorderly behaviour.

      But I see you weren’t charged with disorderly behaviour, only obstruction. I’d like to see the evidence on that. All in all, interesting stuff.

  3. Hilary 3

    Thanks for this report from the frontline.

  4. Gooner 4

    Rocky, you might not want to do this, but perhaps you could give some thought to publishing the summary of facts on this site when it is supplied to you – the first version that is!

    • rocky 4.1

      Sure – as long as people realise that the summary of facts is always drummed up to make the defendant sound as awful as possible. I guess as long as I post it with commentary 😉 Many a time I’ve had summary of facts say a whole bunch of unrelated stuff, and many a time I’ve had summary of facts outright lie!

  5. Jenny 5

    Salutations to you rocky, and to all you others who put your personal comfort and freedom on the line.

    You make us all proud.

    What you do does count.
    Everyone knows this.

    I clicked on the sports photos of the ASB classic at the New Herald website.

    The Herald sports photographers know this

    Several of the images captured by them were of Peer bitterly remonstrating with the organisers about the chanting from the picketers.

    Obviously she is not used to this sort of protest, as it would not occur in Israel without being brutally repressed by the Israeli security forces.

    The whole world knows the importance of your stand in this place, in this country.

    Why?

    Because of the history.

    Just ask the leaders of present day South Africa, how important the anti-racist protests in New Zealand were to their struggle.

    Peer is the pretty face of the Israeli apartheid state, not once has she distanced herself from the racist activities and policies of her government.

    If she did I am sure she would earn the respect of the world and be left alone by the protesters.

    Kiwis have a proud history of protest against injustice.

    Everyone knows this, including Shahar Peer.

    P.S. All my best wishes for you Rocky in court on Thursday.

  6. Jenny 6

    Salutations to you rocky, and to all you others who put your personal comfort and freedom on the line.

    You make us all proud.

    What you do does count.
    Everyone knows this.

    I clicked on the sports photos of the ASB classic at the New Herald website.

    The Herald sports photographers know this

    Several of the images captured by them were of Peer bitterly remonstrating with the organisers about the chanting from the picketers.

    Obviously she is not used to this sort of protest, as it would not occur in Israel without being brutally repressed by the Israeli security forces.

    The whole world knows the importance of your stand in this place, in this country.

    Why?

    Because of the history.

    Just ask the leaders of present day South Africa, how important the anti-racist protests in New Zealand were to their struggle.

    Peer is the pretty face of the Israeli apartheid state. Not once has she distanced herself from the racist activities and policies of her government.

    If she did I am sure she would earn the respect of the world and be left alone by the protesters.

    Kiwis have a proud history of protest against injustice.

    Everyone knows this, including Shahar Peer.

    P.S. All my best wishes for you Rocky LOL J.

  7. Jenny 7

    Salutations to you rocky, and to all you others who put your personal comfort and freedom on the line.

    You make us all proud.

    What you do does count.
    Everyone knows this.

    I clicked on the sports photos of the ASB classic at the New Zealand Herald website.

    The Herald sports photographers know this.

    Several of the images captured by them were of Peer bitterly remonstrating with the organisers about the chanting from the picketers.

    Obviously she is not used to this sort of protest, as it would not occur in Israel without being brutally repressed by the Israeli security forces.

    The whole world knows the importance of your stand in this place, in this country.

    Why?

    Because of the history.

    Just ask the leaders of present day South Africa, how important the anti-racist protests in New Zealand were to their struggle.

    Peer is the pretty face of the Israeli apartheid state. Not once has she distanced herself from the racist activities and policies of her government.

    If she did I am sure she would earn the respect of the world and be left alone by the protesters.

    Kiwis have a proud history of protest against injustice.

    Everyone knows this, including Shahar Peer.

    P.S. All my best wishes for you Rocky. lol J.

    • gitmo 7.1

      “You make us all proud.”

      No I think this action annoyed/bored most people.

      “What you do does count.
      Everyone knows this.”

      Counts ? How and why ?

      “Several of the images captured by them were of Peer bitterly remonstrating with the organisers about the chanting from the picketers.

      Obviously she is not used to this sort of protest, as it would not occur in Israel without being brutally repressed by the Israeli security forces.”

      Rocky has stated that Peer didn’t really give a crap about the protestors…… and I think you’ll find peaceful protesters in Israel are probably given more leeway to protest than in neighbouring countries – although it is a strange part of the world.

      “Peer is the pretty face of the Israeli apartheid state.”

      Are you coming on to her ?

      “Not once has she distanced herself from the racist activities and policies of her government.”

      No apparently she’s here to play tennis and earn a living not to make political statements

  8. Anthony Karinski 8

    If the police clearly is in breach of the intent of the courts surely there must be a way of holding them accountable. Wouldn’t it be possible to hold individual officers to account through civil law suits? I’m sure they would be much more weary of rounding up protesters if they’re in danger of getting hefty fines and/or loosing their jobs.

    • Ag 8.1

      Probably not. The legal community is pretty incestuous in New Zealand. My guess is that they would close ranks and spew the usual bull. But they aren’t viciously bent, so perhaps they may do the right thing.

      If the police won’t enforce the law, then at some point things will end up like they do in South Korea, where protesters come to rallies tooled up and have it out with the riot squads. I don’t think we want that in New Zealand, and at least they don’t “kettle” people here as far as I know.

  9. Eclipse 9

    “Shahar Peer is essentially representing the Israel state.”

    Is she receiving and accepting backing from the Israeli government towards her career, or assistance from them to be here?

    • zelda 9.1

      She works part time for the IDF, the Israeli Military. So in a sense she is sponsored by them, with time off for travel, and able to fit her work around her professional sport activites.

      • Ag 9.1.1

        IIRC they have military service there, so it’s not something that people can get away from easily.

        Besides, tennis players represent themselves, not countries. If it was the Israeli Davis Cup team, then fine. This protest was counterproductive and pointless in my view, and I say that as someone who wants to see an end to Israel and its replacement by a new nation.

  10. Seti 10

    Rocky, you claim to have been the victim of unlawful arrest on a number of occasions (and prima facie your claims seem justified). So if they are, or should be, aware of case law and previous judgements pertaining to protests, and specifically in your case the use of megaphones, why haven’t you sued the police?

    • rocky 10.1

      Sorry for taking so long to reply – I’ve been away for a couple of days.

      I haven’t sued the police because I wouldn’t know what I was doing. The reason I can now happily represent myself in court when charged with criminal charges is because I had a lawyer do my first couple of cases and got a feel for it from that. My current lawyer has agreed to do one of these suing the police for unlawful arrest cases. That will teach me how I can do it in future myself. I’m still trying to decide which case to sue them over – perhaps this one.

  11. Tim Ellis 11

    Spending all this time on pointless protests must be hard on your studies rocky. Obviously students are being given too much support by the government if they can afford to go off protesting every other week.

    Shahar Peer is younger than you, rocky. She is trying to make a living in the world, doing something she does best. It’s sad that you have to use her and attack her livelihood just to make a stupid and senseless political point. There really wasn’t a political point to be made. It seems you ran out of useful things to protest about, so decided to be disruptive.

    As for shahar peer “representing the Israeli state”, what a load of twaddle. You don’t represent the New Zealand state when you go overseas. Why don’t you protest every Arab sportsperson, who on the same grounds must represent “every Arab state”? After all, Israel is the only democracy in the middle east. Why not target the sportspeople representing non democratic states?

    • Armchair Critic 11.1

      What a pile of shit, Tim. I would comment further but what you have said is beneath contempt. Undoubtedly others will give it the response it deserves.

    • Morgs 11.2

      Tim, I think it was made clear that the protesters were not attacking Shahar rather using her presence as a platform to draw attention to the racist, murderous and hypocritical Israeli State.

      • gitmo 11.2.1

        “While a couple of the protesters were chanting chants directly at Shahar Peer, Ruth and I today leading the chants on the megaphones were sticking to those more focused on the policies of the Israeli state.”

        And on a separate note do you think Israel is more/the same/less “racist, murderous and hypocritical” than they other states in the same region ?

      • Tim Ellis 11.2.2

        Not true Morgs. John Minto was shouting: “Shame on Shahar” into the megaphone. He was attacking her personally. What a disgusting old man he is.

      • Chris 11.2.3

        And also shouldn’t the protesters be targetting the racist, murderous and hypocritical ‘non-democratic’ Palestine State?

    • lprent 11.3

      TE: Are you trying to look like a pompous dickhead.

      Rocky had been working, well-paid, and well-taxed as a programmer for 5 years prior to going to university. Now she has figured out what she wants to do, she is currently at uni getting qualified for what she wants to do – with excellent marks.

      Who cares about Peer herself? Societies tend to notice their sports people and to identify with them – often more than their political leaders. So protesting against a sports person is far more likely to get the protesters opinions back to the society screwing up than anything else is.

      Effectively you’re mindlessly chanting the old mantra that politics and sport are separate. That is just stupid – look at South Africa.

      Because of the identification of people in society with their sports people is useful. Even in a nominally democratic society like Israel, the people are the state. After all they are the people who vote in and out their governments with the responsibility for validating the policies.

      That is why protesting against representatives of democratic states is far more effective than non-democratic states. This principle also applies to nominal democracies like Israel who have a apartheid society with restricted voting rights and a repressed minority.

      I notice that Peer has a better idea about what the protesters are doing than you.

      • Tim Ellis 11.3.1

        More pompous twaddle from you LP. Protesting against Shahar Peer playing tennis in New Zealand does nothing for Palestine. If you want to get coverage protest outside the real representatives of the Israeli state, like the consulate. I’m sure if you protested against whaling outside the hotel of some Japanese tourists you’d get coverage back in Japan as well, but it doesn’t make it any less objectionable.

        Comparing Israel to apartheid is grasping at straws. Israel is a far more democratic state than any other country in the middle east.

        You might not care about shahar peer, but a lot of new zealanders do and don’t appreciate the rudeness and hostility displayed to her by a dozen layabouts with nothing better to do with their lives.

        • prism 11.3.1.1

          Pity you are so whimsical in who you care about TE. You are such a pompous self-centred ass.

        • lprent 11.3.1.2

          I always find it amazing at the way you project your views as being the views of ‘new zealanders’. That is really really pompous.

          But then you don’t seem to think that any other views apart from yours are valid… There is a name for that which I can’t think of during a presentation on credit expansion issues.

          • Tim Ellis 11.3.1.2.1

            LP, John Minto claimed to represent the majority of New Zealanders when he was shouting “Shame on Shahar” into his loud hailer.

            These protesters including your niece just need to get a life.

            • felix 11.3.1.2.1.1

              What do you mean he was claiming “to represent the majority of New Zealanders”?

              Do you mean he claimed it in his mind?

              Or do you mean that anyone speaking in a public forum is claiming the same?

              Talk me through it.

              • Tim Ellis

                John Minto said at the protest that the majority of New Zealanders agreed with his protest.

                • lprent

                  So – I think he was wrong at this point in time. But most of the ‘public’ aren’t aware of the issue. Just the same as the majority of the ‘public’ were not aware of the issues in South Africa in the 1970s. How did that work out?

                  I guess John Minto was saying what he thought the ‘public’ would think if they were aware.

                  The point of protests is to raise peoples awareness of an issue. You seem to think that people should remain ignorant – just like you.

                  • Tim Ellis

                    So to show your disagreement with John Minto on this issue LP, you have put up several posts about the protest, none of which shows your disagreement with John Minto. To show her disagreement with John Minto on this issue, Rocky went along to the protest and got arrested.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      To show your disagreement with Israeli war crimes Tim, you have put up several comments, none of which even mention those war crimes. Those war crimes are the one thing about these protests that you do not discuss. In fact, to show your utter disagreement with those war crimes, you go so far as to pretend that those crimes are not what these protests are about. When people explain what they protest about, you claim they are protesting about something else, so strong is your desire not to defend Israeli war crimes.

                    • lprent

                      Huh? John Minto doesn’t control my opinions any more than you do. You asked for and got my opinion on what you reported as being his comment. Now you’re saying that me not agreeing fully with John Minto is something important? Don’t be stupid. I’m afraid that I tend to leave the collective thinking to the wingnuts.

                      Now the question is – are you able to read? Read my first and second post. Read rockys first post, and most of the second post.

                      They were all about the Aucklands police reaction to a protest, and how they were ignoring the legal position about protests that will ensure that they are going to be unlikely to gain a conviction. There was virtually nothing in there about what the protest was about.

                      In the absence of any actual visible thinking by you on the subject, I’ll postulate that you disapprove of protest and dissent. Have you never protested anything that you disagreed with? Like the EFA?

                      If you didn’t – then why not? Too gutless to stand up for your opinions?

                      If you did – then why are you being such a hypocrite trying to deny other people a right to peaceably protest within the law.

                    • Tim Ellis []

                      Given the posts according to you have been about the police reaction, LP, then the protest wasn’t actually about Shahar Peer despite the protest leader shouting “Shame on Shahar” until he got arrested, but it was just protesting practice for a group of layabouts with nothing better to do than cause trouble for people who wanted to watch tennis.

                    • lprent []

                      What I’m mainly concerned about is that peaceful protests are able to be had without unlawful harassment by the police – which is what I consider happened in this case. Obviously we will have to wait a year for any cases to come to trial at considerable expense to both the state and the protesters. However I’d anticipate that on the evidence that has been reported and what has been conveyed to me, the judges will not convict. If they do (district court judges being somewhat emotional at times), it will be overturned on appeal.

                      You appear to be saying that should not be the case. As far as I can see you are simply saying that they should not be allowed to protest because you disagree with their cause. The EFA protests used megaphones, caused public nuisance, and offended many people who cosidered that what they were saying was ridiculous. How can you distinguish the behaviour of the police there to this protest.

                      Umm unfortunately you’re banned at present for putting words that weren’t there in my post. Have fun considering this – perhaps you’ll have a clearer view on the nature of protest in democracy when you return.

                    • burt []

                      lprent

                      The banning was unreasonable in my opinion. I suspect you were angry when you decided that, but that’s also just my opinion.

                      I agree with you about the right to peaceful protest 100% but like Tim I can’t equate persistent shouting on megaphones with peaceful protest.

                    • gitmo []

                      Yes if people are being banned for being obnoxious I’m fucked !

                    • gitmo []

                      OHH can I have a troll ?

                      “What I’m mainly concerned about is that peaceful protests are able to be had without unlawful harassment by the police which is what I consider happened in this case.”

                      I think it’s fairly clear that the protest would have been allowed to continue for as lon as the wanted if the screeching and shouting that the public at the tennis complained about repeatedly was toned down.

                      “The EFA protests used megaphones, caused public nuisance, and offended many people who cosidered that what they were saying was ridiculous. How can you distinguish the behaviour of the police there to this protest.”

                      Were there any complaints from the public of repeated disturbance on the same spot day after day ?

                      It’s fairly obvious that peaceful protests can be made in NZ without unlawful harrassment by the police as evidenced by the chap yesterday who mentioned he was protesting outside the japanese consulate, the pro and anti S59 marches and the approval of any and all being able to screech at polticians of every flavour during and between elections. The only protest that I consider was unfairly/unreasonably interfered with in recent times was the pro Tibet protest that was moved on when the Chinese dignitaries were in town.

                      If you honestly believe that NZ isn’t amongst the most free and easy countries in the world in which to protest without fear of the consequences I’d suggest you’ve lost the plot.

                    • Tim Ellis []

                      How many protesters were arrested over the EFA LP?

                      Could it be that the EFA protesters were well behaved and civil, but Minto’s rent a crowd rag-tag bunch of losers were obnoxious and disturbing the peace?

                      Looks like it to me.

                    • Pascal's bookie []

                      Tim, no one has been convicted for disturbing the peace. Your hypocrisy is showing son. Or does that standard only apply to war crimes?

                      I was surprised, (but not really) that there was no civil disobedience from the anti EFA types. They claimed their fundamental rights to speech were being proscribed and compared it to N Korea and such places, but not a one of them had the courage to actually use the right they claimed was being taken from them.

                      I guess they just don’t value it all that highly.

                    • Tim Ellis []

                      Nonsense PB. The EFA protestors didn’t behave unlawfully. That’s why none of them were charged. They didn’t behave obnoxiously or cause a disturbance. Several thousand protesters, not one of them got arrested or charged.

                      John Minto leads a dozen protesters and half of them get arrested. It says it all really.

                    • Pascal's bookie []

                      That makes no sense Tim. I don’t think you understood my comment.

                      I said it was strange that the EFA clowns didn’t engage in civil disobedience. Do you know what that means Tim? It means none of them were prepared to break the law and face the trifling consequences of that, even though they clamed to think NZ’s very democracy was at stake. I’m glad we won’t be relying on your good and civil self to defend our freedoms at any point.

                      No one has been convicted of anything for these recent protests Tim. Many doubt they will be. It looks like the police are overstepping their authority, but that, like war crimes and racism doesn’t exercise you overmuch does it son? Hence your confusion as to what these threads are about.

                      Perhaps you should just go and have a wee lie down mate. Others will defend your freedoms, however much you criticise them for doing so or lack awareness of pretty much anything beyond your nose. Liberals are good like that.

                    • Tim Ellis []

                      I don’t know why you think people have to break the law and behave obnoxiously to defend their freedoms PB. Thousands of people protested against the EFA within the law. A dozen ratbags with nothing better to do behaved obnoxiously enough to get arrested. That doesn’t make them heroes when they get a free lunch in jail and get all the media coverage they coveted. They aren’t sacrificing or risking anything.

                    • Pascal's bookie []

                      Perhaps you should read some history then Tim. Which of our freedoms and civil liberties did we gain by being polite?

                    • rocky

                      Lynn said he disagreed with John Minto that the public support the protests. I don’t think the public support us, that’s why you protest – to create awareness. That doesn’t mean I disagree with the rest of it. I’m pleased you’re banned – you like to selectively quote people and say they said things they didn’t.

              • felix

                Is that the quote or is that the Timterpretation?

                Because so far I’ve never seen them turn out to be the same thing.

              • Tim Ellis

                Felix I heard John Minto say it. If you had been there you would have heard him say it too. But you weren’t so instead you’re behaving like a troll. Ask any of the protesters who were there if he didn’t say it.

        • The Voice of Reason 11.3.1.3

          “Comparing Israel to apartheid is grasping at straws”.

          By your friends ye shall be known. Apartheid SA, for obvious reasons, had bugger all friends. The All Blacks, Freddie Mercury and Israel. So comparing the Zionist regime with the boers is entirely appropriate, Timmy.

          • Tim Ellis 11.3.1.3.1

            And Hamas’ friends are the worst most corrupt and oppressive and least democratic regimes in the world. Israel’s friends are liberal western democracies.

            • Pascal's bookie 11.3.1.3.1.1

              So? Who is supporting hamas? (Other than Israel back when they were seen as a religious and conservative alternative to the suspected secular commun1sts in the PLO).

              You should also check out who Isreal has supported in Lebanon and northern Iraq. there are no clean hands there Tim. the fact that one side is bad is no apology for the other side being just as bad.

            • Ari 11.3.1.3.1.2

              Israel’s friends?

              You mean like the evangelical american Christians who want Israel to last long enough to be die in the specific way they interpret the bible as saying they will before the rapture?

              Yeah, real smart and democratic folks.

              • Pascal's bookie

                One thing I worry about is that if certain believers do manage to provoke their apocalyptic war in the middle east, who do you think will get the blame when Jebus doesn’t come back?

                (hint: the Jews, that’s who)

    • The Voice of Reason 11.4

      “After all, Israel is the only democracy in the middle east.”

      That’ll come as a surprise to the voters of Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq, Tim. Palestine would be a democracy, too, but the nutters next door won’t let ’em.

  12. Sam 12

    C’mon ‘Rocky’ what are you doing? Protesting outside a tennis arena while an Israeli player is on centre court…..I’ve read through this site and it’s very good, I note where it was stated Phil Goff needed to sort his shit out in reference to his use of a man who was the owner of several properties to highlight how hard it has become for ‘everyday’ New Zealanders. This ability to recognise when your own side has done wrong is something not often seen on far right blogs for example – especially that moron Cameron Slater (who for the record scams 100k a year off his insurance company, because he’s too depressed to work….)

    BUT

    Shahar Peer ‘representing the Israeli state’??? If you have such a problem with Israel, why not travel to Israel? Wouldnt that make more difference? I would imagine this would of gained no exposure in Israeli (let alone New Zealand) and if anything wasted police time. Sure you have the right to protest, but really, it looks abit stupid.

    Hey I know, instead of going to Israel where such protests would at least appear relevant, why not go through the phone book and turn up outside the homes of Israeli immigrants? Chase them down the street!!! because after all, they’re also ‘representatives of the Israeli state’…..

    • zelda 12.1

      If they work for the Israeli military at the same time, could be a good idea. Do you know any recent immigrants who work part time for the IDF

      • Sam 12.1.1

        you’re missing my point. It won’t make a difference to the people that matter. The tennis player herself has brushed it off. If anything it has worked to move people against your cause.

        which is a shame.

    • lprent 12.2

      It did get exposure in Israel. Look on the net.

      Moreover, you misunderstand who in Israel you’re talking to. Amongst the Israeli citizens, it helps to support those who who are working to change policy. Amongst the non-citizens that Israel has been repressing or dispossessing since from 1948 onwards – it helps to show that there is support outside the country.

      It isn’t bad for a small protest in NZ to even show up in the establishment media in Israel.

      • prism 12.2.1

        So true lprent well said.

      • gitmo 12.2.2

        “Amongst the non-citizens that Israel has been repressing or dispossessing since from 1948 onwards it helps to show that there is support outside the country.”

        What would really help would be a good BBC documentary on Israel and the regional conflicts from the time of the Arab revolt in the 30s through to the present day. The continued mantra the Israel are the aggressors or the palestinians are the aggressors masks the confused history the region.

        It’s a bit like those who are railing against people doing their time in the IDF as if somehow the IDF are the font of all evil and should be disbanded and can’t visualise what might happen with no IDF in place. – bizarre.

        • Pascal's bookie 12.2.2.1

          I don’t think the IDF should be disbanded, I just think they should stop committing war crimes. Not too much to ask of a nation that likes to claim it’s a western liberal democracy is it?

          If it isn’t too much to ask, then why defend them ‘gitmo’.

          • gitmo 12.2.2.1.1

            I agree and I also think Hamas and the other lunatic fringes in the West Bank and Gaza should stop committing acts of terrorism… I don’t think either of us is going to have anything to celebrate on either of these fronts during our lifetimes.

      • Tim Ellis 12.2.3

        John Minto doesn’t speak for me LP, and nor does rocky. By the looks of the comments at Mr Minto’s blog column, protesting a young tennis player isn’t representative of New Zealand either. http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/blogs/frontline/3211294/Where-are-the-Palestinian-tennis-players

        • lprent 12.2.3.1

          Yes – they don’t represent you. But I don’t think that they claimed that they were representing all new zealanders – unlike you.

          They were representing themselves and doing their own actions. It is you that is denying their individual action and responsibility and saying that they should conform to some kind of mythical profile of behaviour. It also appears that you are the sole arbiter of what that standard is.

          By the sound of it you’d prefer the sobriquet of dictator added to your pseudonym?

          • gitmo 12.2.3.1.1

            “They were representing themselves and doing their own actions. It is you that is denying their individual action and responsibility and saying that they should conform to some kind of mythical profile of behaviour. It also appears that you are the sole arbiter of what that standard is.”

            Weren’t the protesters asking the tennis player to “conform to some kind of mythical profile of behaviour.”

            Weren’t the protesters trying to deny the tennis player being able to “take her individual action and responsibility.”…….why should they set themselves up as the sole arbiters of such a standard ?

            Time to go now the weather’s too good for trolling, enjoy your Labour party party…..I think most of us would prefer have our privates attached to the mains but someone’s got to take an interest to save the rest of us the trouble

          • Tim Ellis 12.2.3.1.2

            LP, John Minto said he represented the majority of New Zealanders. You might want to add “ignorant fool” to your pseudonym.

  13. BLiP 13

    All strength to you Rocky.

  14. So you were the guy, who was yelling abuse at a 21 year old woman???

    Some questions for you,The protest group you belong is called Global Peace and Justice, is that right????

    Your group stands up for the rights of people all over the world???

    If this is correct, how come you werent screaming abuse at the North Korea girls soccer team when they were here?, over their government actions???

    Would you ever protest an Iranian tennis player because of their government actions?

    Why not be honest, your protests are about your idealogy, its a anti west and anti capitalist protest, its nothing to do with Apartied, if you were truly against Apartied, you would of stood by the two Iraseli women who were refused service last year at a cafe.

    Instead, your leader Minto said “he couldnt care less”

    That showed me that you have no integrity.

    Oh by the way, thanks for my laugh of the year, who was the Idiot that yelled out “This is was a police state looks like” when one of the protestors got arrested”

    That was freakin funny, did you guys really think that NZ is a police state??

    The second biggest laugh of my year, was when you guys put censored stickers over your mouth.

    I mean come on now, Minto writes for fairfax!!!! he is in every paper and on every channel, you guys arent censored.

    Perhaps I should plan a counter protest outside your house, I will have an Israeli flag and my Toby Keith CD’s, surly you would be for my right to do this, or does Free Speech only apply to you?

    • Ag 14.1

      Simple to beat up on this remark.

      North Korea is not a democracy. North Koreans are not free to leave North Korea, nor are they free to protest against the Kim regime.

      Israelis suffer no such sanctions. That’s the reason that Israel gets flak: its citizens continuously vote for the racist policies of its government. Same as South Africa.

    • rocky 14.2

      So you were the guy, who was yelling abuse at a 21 year old woman???

      I’m a 23 year old woman and I was protesting the Israeli state, not the 22 year old tennis player.

      If this is correct, how come you werent screaming abuse at the North Korea girls soccer team when they were here?, over their government actions???

      Would you ever protest an Iranian tennis player because of their government actions?

      I can’t be everywhere. If you read my post you’ll see I actually say that I wouldn’t normally have turned up to this sort of protest. I have however protested other sporting connections this country have. A couple of years ago I protested against New Zealand having sporting ties with Zimbabwe.

      Why not be honest, your protests are about your idealogy, its a anti west and anti capitalist protest, its nothing to do with Apartied, if you were truly against Apartied, you would of stood by the two Iraseli women who were refused service last year at a cafe.

      Instead, your leader Minto said “he couldnt care less’

      Please post a link to that quote you say is from John Minto.

      I did feel sorry for those Israeli women you mention – I think denying someone service at a cafe based on their race is disgusting.

      Oh by the way, thanks for my laugh of the year, who was the Idiot that yelled out “This is was a police state looks like’ when one of the protestors got arrested’

      That was freakin funny, did you guys really think that NZ is a police state??

      Read the category archive for “police” on this blog. Then tell me if you still think that comment was ridiculous.

      Perhaps I should plan a counter protest outside your house, I will have an Israeli flag and my Toby Keith CD’s, surly you would be for my right to do this, or does Free Speech only apply to you?

      If you like. As long as you keep within the law it wouldn’t bother me.

  15. Tim Ellis 15

    Yes PB when Israel is convicted of war crimes I will condemn that country, but it hasn’t been. John Minto on the other hand certainly acted like a complete idiot, and LP certainly put up posts that appeared to applaud and support the protest. It is a bit difficult for LP to say that he disagrees with John Minto in this case after he’s put up several posts applauding the protest.

    [lprent: Banned for month. There is nothing I wrote in in my posts about the cause that the protesters were drawing attention to. Trying to rewrite what a poster actually says is a darwinian winnowing offense. ]

    • Pascal's bookie 15.2

      So your opinion that minto acted like an idiot is enough for you to condemn him, that’s fair enough. It’s pretty wankerish to then pretend that anyone who supports the same case as he does, also supports every aspect of what Minto does, but wanker is what wanker does I guess.

      Strangely though, you need a conviction to condemn war crimes. War crimes obviously don’t exercise you over much, or at least not enough to bother forming an opinion. Like racism I suppose, where the iwi/kiwi business just didn’t factor into your voting decision to switch from L to N in 05.

      It doesn’t matter Tim, that there have not been convictions. It would matter if you were a judge in the haig or whatever, then you would be obliged to treat people as innocent. But citizens have different responsibilities to things like judges and the state. Where something as political as war crimes are believed to have taken place, particularly by a democratic country with which we share ties, then citizen activism is a necessary part of getting those convictions. Absent that, the likelihood of trials diminishes. But you know, hey. It’s only war crimes right. Dead kids and old people. Flattened infrastructure and so on.

      I guess if the people speaking out about it are also, generally speaking, opposed to something that does concern you, then tactically it might make sense to oppose them on this front as well.

      After all Tim, the only thing I’m aware of you stating you ‘believe in’ is tax cuts.

      And if minto opposes your tax cut, then everything else he opposes, like war crimes, are just a price to be paid.

      • Tim Ellis 15.2.1

        A lot of distraction going on there PB. Grasping at straws.

        Both Israel and Hamas have probably broken international law. On a scale of breaches, in my view Hamas is many times worse than Israel. Funny how Minto doesn’t mention Hamas or protest against Arab sportspeople despite their governments supporting Hamas’ “war crimes”.

        • Pascal's bookie 15.2.1.1

          The citizens of nondemocratic govts are less culpable for their govts actions of course Tim, but in any case none of that would justify Israeli war crimes.

          But if you want to be a war crime apologist, which is what you are doing by saying that Israeli war crimes can’t be condemned, then carry on. One day you might even get your 2-3 points temporarily chopped off your marginal tax rate. I hope you spend it well.

          • Tim Ellis 15.2.1.1.1

            I didn’t say Israeli war crimes can’t be condemned PB, so please stop lying. I said Israel hasn’t been convicted, or even charged with war crimes.

            Hamas was elected PB, which means Palestinians are just as culpable for Hamas actions as Israelis are for Israel’s actions.

            • Pascal's bookie 15.2.1.1.1.1

              Apologies Tim. I should have said that you won’t condemn Israel, and that you criticise those that do and claim that they shouldn’t. Big difference I suppose.

              I’m glad you recognse now that Israel isn’t the only democracy in the region, despite your previous comments to the contrary. I certainly agree that hamas should be condemned for it’s actions. I don’t think those actions limit any criticisms of Israel’s actions however.

              • Tim Ellis

                I’ll take your gracious apology as it was intended, PB.

                Turkey has only become sustainably democratic since it started working towards EU integration. Iraq’s democracy only exists because of the US invasion. Lebanon’s democracy has been brittle at best, with Syria only moving its forces out four years ago.

                Since 1948, Israel has been a free, democratic state.

              • Pascal's bookie

                And yet you said before that Israel was the only democracy. which was somehow a reason to not condemn their war crimes.

                But I guess that suited your rhetorical needs at the time. Personally I don’t have much truck with any of the so called democracies in the ME.

    • yess 15.3

      You should get out a bit more LP and lighten up.

  16. channelingd4j 16

    Pah ?

  17. burt 17

    Didn’t the EFA ban the use of megaphones during the “protect the incumbent” period?

    Or was that amended out in the hundreds of final amendments that were eventually passed without consultation under urgency?

  18. Mark E 18

    Gitmo, it could be worse, at least you arent being arrested simply for being obnoxious, like Rocky and her mates

    • lprent 18.1

      obnoxious is not a legal charge………….

      So I guess that you’re saying the police were acting outside of the law.

  19. Iprent:

    You considered this to be harrasement by police, but the protesters shouting out to a young woman thast she has “Blood on her hands” isnt???

  20. prism 20

    captcha – weird!
    Tim Ellis
    January 10, 2010 at 8:54 am
    I thought that lprent said that the above was to be banned for a month at this time? How does that work when he seems to be running the “debates’?

    • lprent 20.1

      He should be being auto-moderated at present. But there were already messages out after the message that he got banned for.

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