The Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill

Written By: - Date published: 8:16 am, December 2nd, 2014 - 34 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, john key, national, national/act government - Tags: ,

John Key has had a horrendous few weeks.  That smart cockiness that he has shown in the past when providing political comment on Labour’s latest woes has disappeared.  Andrew Little is turning out to be an exceptional opposition leader.  Passionate yet modest, thoughtful yet engaging he is starting to establish a public persona that may prove to be a winning one.

The recent John Key, the one beholden to Cameron Slater, is worlds away from that nice John Key.  This is a huge problem for National.  Nice John is so much more acceptable than chaos and mayhem John.

So yesterday nice John reappeared and promised meaningful changes to the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill.  Even though he has the power to force the bill through thanks to ACT’s vote despite its supposedly libertarian beliefs.

Recent events will no doubt have been factored into Key’s claim yesterday that he wanted a bipartisan approach to the counter terrorism bill.  He sounded very conciliatory.  He has said that National is prepared to make changes to the counter terrorism bill so that bipartisan support for the bill can be achieved.

He has gone back to his pre 2008 election Key when he did a deal with Labour to make sure that the anti smacking bill went through.  This was the John Key the electorate liked and supported, the deal maker, the non ideological Key.

It may be that part of his motivation is that some National MPs are privately expressing concern about the bill.  For the party that prides itself on personal freedom and has railed against mandatory energy efficient light bulb standards and more efficient shower heads they should be.  The provisions are draconian and being rammed through under urgency makes this worse.

The claimed urgency of the measure is dubious.  You wonder why the Bill was introduced so late.  It could have been introduced over a week ago and a week’s select committee hearing held rather than the 24 hours actually allowed.

And you have to question why a full select committee process cannot occur.  There is already power for passports to be cancelled for 12 months, the Bill extends this to three years.  And the most contentious provision, allowing 48 hour warrantless surveillance may be restricted by reducing this power to 24 hours.  But to my view the case for change has not been made out and the current system for issuing warrants can, if properly resourced, work perfectly adequately.

It should not matter if it is 48 hours or 24 hours or 10 minutes, as a matter of principle warrantless searches should not be allowed.  And after the various problems the SIS has suffered from over the past few years such as performing illegal searches and smearing the leader of the opposition during an election campaign the thought of giving them more power is really disturbing.

Key is preserving the red meat for his supporters with a promise of tougher legislation being introduced next year, even though the review of our intelligence services has not been completed.

The disturbing thing about every recent law change affecting the intelligence agencies is that they almost inevitably gives the State more power.  The process is an incremental one.  Power by power the boundaries are pushed out so that the State’s apparatus becomes more and more powerful and individual rights more proscribed.

John Key has in the past expressed libertarian ideals.  In 2007 he said this about the Electoral Finance Bill:

Here in New Zealand we often take our democratic freedoms for granted. We think they will always be there. We have a Bill of Rights which is supposed to protect our right to freedom of expression. What on earth could go wrong?

I have a different view. I believe what Thomas Jefferson said – that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance. There are times when we have to stand up for our rights, and the rights of our neighbours and friends, and indeed the rights of people we totally disagree with, or else these rights will begin to erode away.

The anticipated changes present a dilemma for Labour.  Obviously they will want to claim credit for the changes and be seen to be acting in a conciliatory and responsible way.  From my civil libertarian point of view I would prefer they just said no.  Justification for the increased powers has not been established and the use of extreme urgency means that proper scrutiny of the bill has not occurred.

34 comments on “The Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill”

  1. Murray Simmonds 1

    Its pretty clear that the “counter-terrorism” bill currently before parliament has little to do with counter-terrorism, and a lot to do with potential threats to the money-making endeavours of the 1% – the multinational directors who want unfettered access to our internal markets with no danger of disruption of, or interference with their access by popular protest movements of any kind.

    More than half of the chapters in the current version of the PPTA have nothing to do with free trade, and everything to do with with protecting the money-making rights of American and European multinationals and corporations. They aim to achieve this by, among other things, granting these multinationals the right to sue any government that intentionally or unintentionally interferes with their money-making endeavours.

    Unintentional interference by governments, of course, would include the failure of those governments to clamp down on popular protest and dissent in the streets. The “Occupy” movements for example (especially the “Occupy Wall Street” faction) must have frightened the goonies out of the big corporations. Their response was to push for greater State control over any and all protest movements that might happen to interfere with the money-making endeavours of the top 1%.

    The Obama administration quickly forgot its promise of “Yes we can” and became instead what will go down in history as America’s “Greater-State-Surveillance” administration. This has been achieved of course by disguising the increased capacity for state surveillance of the organizers and instigators of radical protest movements as increased “counter-terrorism” surveillance. But make no mistake, its real aim is to give the State greater power to hit back at popular protest movements like “Occupy Wall Street” and anything else that might interfere with the bottom lines of the big corporations (including the fight for increased minimum wages, and unionism, for example).

    The setting up of “Five eyes” was just the beginning. Australia, Great Britain and now NZ are all falling into line with the wishes the big multinational corporations by expanding their internal state surveillance in order to enable the governments of these countries keep a lid on popular protest movements.

    Regardless of what the multinational corporations may or may not get in the Pan Pacific “Trade” Agreement they will get regardless, through the availability of increased state surveillance measures. That is because our rapidly-eroding democratic rights are steadily being usurped by Authoritarian Governments with increasingly greater powers to spy on you, me or anyone else who might not be a part of the top 1%. In short, the multinationals aim to clamp down on anyone who might want to argue, for example for a fairer economic system that benefits all, rather than an economic system to looks after the 1%.

    Key and his crony government are hell-bent on aiding the 1% in this endeavour. And the Labour party, to the extent that it agrees to jump on this particular bandwaggon, will be aiding and abetting them in that!

    • Chooky 1.1

      +100..”the Labour party, to the extent that it agrees to jump on this particular bandwaggon, will be aiding and abetting them in that!”

      i am very disappointed the Labour Party has not taken the same stance as Winston Peters and the Greens… i wont be voting Labour …imo Andrew Little is naive on this matter

      …unwarranted surveillance = surveillance without accountability” ( Orwellian …and not about terrorists but everything about eroding NZers democratic rights and economic sovereignty )

      ….no doubt Key will try and whip up some sort of threat …and he will do this by inviting enmity by sending off NZ troops to the Middle East in support of USA and friends, who created the problem the first place by economic imperialism and destabilisation

      ….and who trusts John Key and his shadow side- kick Slater ?…who trusts the SIS after Goff being setup ?…just before a General Election…and when hard questions needed to be asked by the NZ Parliament about Israelis with multiple passports in Christchurch…the issue was swept under the carpet and Goff was kept in ignorance and then made out to be a liar when he told the truth

  2. Anne 2

    Love the John Key quote. He never wrote it of course. He’s too much of an ignoramus to even know what Jefferson said let alone understand it.

    Someone should quote that Key line in the House – preferably this afternoon!

    • BassGuy 2.1

      He’s right – the price of freedom is eternal vigilance, but Jefferson wasn’t talking about the evil terrorist threat to my employer’s right to pay minimum wage.

      He was talking about the responsibility of the population to prevent tyrants extending their control.

      Jefferson was speaking about our responsibility to stop those like Key from becoming our tyrants.

      That time is now.

      • Anne 2.1.1

        He was talking about the responsibility of the population to prevent tyrants extending their control.

        Jefferson was speaking about our responsibility to stop those like Key from becoming our tyrants.

        It’s true, I know, but what this global corporate tyranny has thrown up is an extremely dangerous situation whereby innocent people around the world do have something to fear from the likes of ISIS and similar terrorist groupings. No, I haven’t fallen for the fear tactics of the Key government, but there is a threat to NZ – as elsewhere- and I think Labour has an obligation to take it into account when deliberating on how they approach this piece of legislation.

        It hard to believe Andrew Little has only been leader for two weeks – it feels like he’s been there forever. I, already, have absolute faith in his judgement.

  3. Tautoko Mangō Mata 3

    TPPA (not PPTA- Post Primary Teachers Assn although they have nothing to do with free trade either.)
    I say NO to unwarranted surveillance.

  4. Ashoka's Hell 4

    Funny, I wonder if you compared the Risk analysis of dying from Terrorism with the risk of dying at work in NZ.

    Yup, ya more likely to die at work in NZ.

    51 deaths /4,471,000 NZ population = 0.001% Chance of death

    51 deaths 2013 = http://www.business.govt.nz/worksafe/research/health-and-safety-data/summary-of-fatalities-2007-2013

    The statistics do not include: Fatalities ffrom maritime, aviation sectors or
    from long latency diseases caused by exposure to hazardous substances (say asbestos).

    They did’nt rush legislation through for that. Keep in fear slaves, keep working. Now see how the news does not report risk

    Great article from Big Think on Know your Risk:
    http://bigthink.com/risk-reason-and-reality/how-to-read-risk-numbers-to-know-what-the-real-risk-is

    1. Relative risk of terrorism death globally, 2013 – 61% increase from 2012

    2. Absolute risk of terrorism deaths globally, 2014 – 17,958

    3. Risk rate for terrorism deaths globally, 2014 – 0.000003 percent

    All three numbers matter. All help put the risk in perspective.

    The New York Times headline, “Deaths Linked to Terrorism Are Up 60 Percent, Study Finds” is accurate. But rarely does one single number tell the whole story for any risk. 61% increase is the relative risk, the new numbers compared to the old ones. That’s one way to look at the risk. But to put the risk in perspective you also have to know the absolute risk…the actual number of victims. The total number of terrorism victims in 2013 was 17,958. And then to put that in perspective you have to compare the number of actual victims to the total number of possible victims to get the risk rate, another important statistic. Here’s what those three calculations would look like for these new findings.

    • mickysavage 4.1

      Good analysis. The prospects of dying from terrorist activity are very small. Maybe we should concentrate on the more likely areas first.

  5. cogito 5

    Key is NZ’s #1 terrorist. Frightening.

  6. Bill 6

    Obviously they (Labour) will want to claim credit for the changes and be seen to be acting in a conciliatory and responsible way.

    Why would Labour want to claim credit for fighting a rear guard action? And why would that be viewed as being conciliatory? As for being responsible, wouldn’t it actually be irresponsible to follow your advice and ‘just say no’ when they could at least reduce the potential increase in powers in the short term, with a stated view to roll them back when they assume the role of government?

    • mickysavage 6.1

      You have summed up the dilemma of a progressive politician in opposition. Should they improve things and get credit or oppose because it is a bad idea, no matter what. Most of the time I can live with the first idea …

      • Enough is Enough 6.1.1

        I am not convinced they did improve things though.

        24 hours is as much of a breach of fundamental rights as 48 hours.

  7. shorts 7

    Would have been nice for Mr Little and party to have opposed this bill…

    • cogito 7.1

      There could well be some genuine security reasons for **parts** of this bill.

      However, as the person pushing it is Key, and he is a compulsive liar, manipulator and deceiver, anything he says, does or wants is tainted.

      • shorts 7.1.1

        I can’t see any reason for increased security at all. Not a single piece of evidence or opinion has been presented that even suggests as much

        • cogito 7.1.1.1

          I agree, but one has to accept that there can be hidden threats, and that’s why we have the Intelligence services. The problem is that Key’s management has been so utterly corrupt and inept that it is virtually impossible for people to have any faith in them.

          In that context, the fact that Labour may support the bill in an amended form does provide a little reassurance that there are actually some real reasons for it, not just ones fabricated by liar Key for his own despotic purposes.

          • shorts 7.1.1.1.1

            biggest threat I see are our (current) elected officials… then there is the hidden threat of their/our corporate masters… our allies…. extremists in the middle east are a long long way down the list

          • Murray Rawshark 7.1.1.1.2

            If they’re hidden, it won’t be our bloody useless squirrels that find them. They were hopeless with the Rainbow Warrior, they sucked a kumara with Ahmed Zaoui, they illegally bugged Dotcom, and they helped Key win an election. They don’t even deserve to exist.

            Labour’s role in the loss of our rights is contemptible and disgusting. FJK and FAL too.

      • Chooky 7.1.2

        i have to admit i am more scared of Slater and his mate Key than I am of any of any so-called terrorist

    • JonL 7.2

      If they don’t, they’re dead meat to myself and many of my friends and aquaintances. Nice, has nothing to do with it!

  8. Sans Cle 8

    Lest we forget how JK lined up all his ducks, to enable himself to practice an effective autocracy in this supposed democratic NZ.

    http://www.tv3.co.nz/CAMPBELL-LIVE-Tuesday-May-20-2014/tabid/3692/articleID/99951/MCat/2908/Default.aspx

  9. Ashoka's Hell 9

    In an unprecedented move today Security Intelligence Service (SIS) Minister Chris Finlayson Head of said they will be conducting surveillance 24/7 on everyone in NZ.

    Asked why, Finlayson said, the risk of death to each NZer is 100%. We must be vigilant. He mentioned that although the majority of NZers are on shit pay, with shitty houses, shit education and/or shitty student loans with shitty job prospects, why on earth should they get off scot ‘shit’ free by being killed in a terrorist attack and not pay their taxes.

    Finlayson said it’s the FEAR FACTOR (TM) that keeps those little glistening worker sheep noses to the grind stone. I mean it is a privilege after all for them to give up their lives working so we elites can eat at posh restaurants and mince about eating mince pies all day.

    If a terrorist kills any New Zealander before their “natural time” we would miss out on a key revenue stream. Also they may get ideas above their apathetic little minds and think they can protest as well. Shitty little sheep they are.

    To show solidarity with common kiwi workers and to lead from behind, Finlayson said, he has asked SIS to conduct surveillance on himself 24/7, so he could:

    “Watch himself, watching the watch men, watch himself watching other people while watching the watcher watch.”

    Fin mentioned, while watching watches watch him he would need a James Bond 1973 Rolex 5513 watch valued at $450,000 to ensure the watches watching him would watch him wearing his posh watch while he watched them watching the watched. He said it was kinda kinky in Nanny Nat way. We don’t give a shit if you get paid sweet FA, but by God, you start thinking out of turn or being killed by terrorists, we have to do something about that!

    Somehow he wants to get the CIA involved; apparently they have some great mind torture fender bending, bender bad boy techniques he wants to utilise that will stop any opposition from gaining employment in Government or key businesses.

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

    • Chooky 9.1

      lol…still laughing ….but on second thoughts, i hope this was a joke…lol

      ….make a bloody good Mr Bean in the bathroom movie

  10. Bill 10

    So it seems that unwarranted surveillance will likely be for 24 hours and specifically on terrorist matters.

    Meaning that anyone can be spied on for 24 hours for any reason and a warrant then sought to pursue fishing expedition catches on the basis of ‘information received’.

    Not good enough.

  11. sir pat 11

    i like Annes comment….”global corporate tyranny”….but would change the last word to terrorism…..they are worse than the so called Isis threat. i cannot help but think that these new powers will be used to quash anything and anyone who object in anyway to what is the established order.
    As for Shonkey watering down this effort it will be just a way to blindside us come next year with his new improved measures.
    i read many well thought out posSt here and at other blogs but i wonder does having places like this remove the instensity of conviction we used to have which would get us out on the streets and showing/telling the govt “LISTEN UP YOU PRICKS WE DO NOT WANT THIS!!! “….perhaps the electronics age is turning us into “puter protesters”?

    • Chooky 11.1

      ..good points…but I think people are just getting up to speed on the implications of this Bill….and more to come!

      ..if it does get implemented I think there will be lot of protest! ….and it wont look pretty for the Labour Party if it has supported it

    • Murray Simmonds 11.2

      Absolutely right on those points, Sir Pat. And I too wondered what Key was signalling in “the new improved measures”!

      Betcha there will be a new term bandied about before much longer – something like “Economic Terrorism”. It will apply to anyone who protests against the economic status quo. The State Terrorism Act will apply to them/us just as surely as it applies to the ISIL-inspired murderers and barbarians.

      it will particularly refer to anyone who dares to oppose the relentless march towards world economic domination by the big overseas multinationals/corporates who demand unfettered access to our internal markets. It is them, and their desire for money, more money and still more money via unrestricted access to the NZ market that this bill is all about.

  12. Little’s position is survile.

    It legitimates Key’s spying, not just for 24 hours without warrant.

    It legitimates the ‘warrants’ the SIS will pull out of its 5 eyes arse to retrospectively justify such spying.

    This after Key was on the ropes during the election and forced to admit that we are all being spied on by the NSA.

    We know the premises of the NSA spying for the ‘war on terror’.

    They are that the US defined war on terror is justified, and any critique or opposition to it as a consequence of of its global reign of terror is treason.

    In sucking up to Key Little is saying we accept every justification that the US has thrown at us since 9/11 as legitimating the sacrifice of our rights to criticise and oppose both US imperialism and its NZ lackey NACT regime.

    Little turns the Labour Party into part of US global terror machine.

    • Paul 12.1

      Accommodating the Tories does not work for the left’s principles. The Labour Party should know this by now.

      Did pandering to Thatcher’s legacy help Blair turn the UK into a fairer society and reverse neoliberalism?
      Did pandering to Bush’s legacy help Obama turn the US into a fairer society and reverse neoliberalism?

      Of course not…
      Only by following a new way, like the South Americans have, can we rid ourselves of the plague of neoliberalism.

      If they support this, it looks like Labour will support the TPPA as well.

  13. barry 13

    Little had come close to getting my vote with his recent statements. But then he goes and agrees to increasing the powers of the SIS to spy on him and his supporters (and me). The SIS is NOT Labour’s friend, and they are not good for political freedom in NZ.

    To vote for increased SIS powers (whatever crumbs National offers) is a kick in the guts for any social activists who will end up being spied on.

    Labour now abetting John Key: spying and Lying since 2008.

  14. RedBaronCV 14

    I’d like labour to vote against this. They need to put a stop to the salami slicing tactics of the Nacts. and get them to understand that “no” means “no.”

    There doesn’t look like any justification for it and if Key got out of Iraq instead of sucking up to the Yanks then the ‘no reason to do it’ dives even further. Once it’s in then it will be modified at a later date.
    Look how long Canty has gone without a regional council soon, soon yeah …

  15. philj 15

    Labour missed an opportunity to take a principled position on privacy and human rights. AL could have had JK on the ropes for a bit longer. He gave JK a breather.

  16. Sabine 16

    Hmmmm

    http://www.fas.org/irp/doddir/dod/jp3_63.pdf

    quote: Unprivileged enemy belligerents are belligerents who do not qualify for the
    distinct privileges of combatant status (e.g., combatant immunity). Examples of
    unprivileged belligerents are:

    (a) Individuals who have forfeited the protections of civilian status by joining
    or substantially supporting an enemy non-state armed group in the conduct of hostilities, and

    (b) Combatants who have forfeited the privileges of combatant status by
    engaging in spying, sabotage, or other similar acts behind enemy lines.

    —————————————————————

    “A purely military emergency could give no excuse for disregarding International
    Law. Because victory is endangered, victory must not be pursued by breaking the
    law on the grounds of necessity, because the laws of warfare are supposed to rule
    over this conflict which is always connected with need and want.”
    Trial of German War Criminals, Nuremberg, 1946

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  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    6 days ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    7 days ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    7 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago

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